West Notes: Thome, McCourt, Hairston, Angels

The Situation and The Bachelor might soon be joined by The Freak and The Panda in the reality TV world.  MLB Productions and Showtime plan to air an all-access reality series about the Giants next summer, though Matt Cain says the deal hasn't been completely finalized yet.

As we ponder the concept of learning way more than we ever wanted to know about Aubrey Huff's rally thong, here are some other items from the western divisions…

  • The Rangers offered Jim Thome a more lucrative contract than his $3MM deal with Minnesota, but Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports Thome preferred the Twins due to their closer proximity to his family's home in Chicago.  Thome called his choice "difficult" and praised the Texas organization.
  • Fox has advanced Frank McCourt money from the Dodgers' current TV contract so the club can cover operating expenses, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.  Shaikin speaks to former Athletics executive Andy Dolich, who says such a move is "a bit odd," particularly during the offseason.  Another Shaikin source, USC Sports Business Institute Director Bill Carter, says the payment doesn't help the existing perception that McCourt doesn't have the finances to run the club.
  • Shaikin also reports that a Los Angeles judge has finalized his earlier ruling, throwing out a martial property agreement between Frank and Jamie McCourt that would have made Frank the Dodgers' sole owner.  Jamie McCourt is arguing that this ruling gives her co-ownership of the team, while Frank McCourt and his legal team are expected to pursue a new trial.
  • The Padres "have essentially moved on from" Jerry Hairston Jr., says MLB.com's Corey Brock as part of a San Diego-related reader mailbag.  The Yankees and Dodgers were connected to Hairston earlier this winter, but the Nationals have shown the most recent interest.
  • The Angels are still looking for a leadoff man, but Mark Saxon of ESPNLosAngeles.com notes that the Halos only need such a player for the short-term, given top prospect Mike Trout's ability to play at the top of the order.
  • ESPNDallas.com's Richard Durrett catches up with right-hander Eric Hurley, who is healthy and looking to make the Texas roster in the spring.  Hurley, the Rangers' first-round pick in the 2004 draft, was ranked by Baseball America as the 68th best prospect in baseball before the 2007 season, but hasn't pitched outside of the Arizona Fall League over the last two years due to injuries.

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