Quick Hits: Braves, Mariners, Balfour, Posting System

Today the Diamondbacks purchased the contract of Wily Mo Pena with the aim of employing him in the middle of their order as a designated hitter during the AL leg of their interleague schedule.  The D'Backs had open spots on the 40-man roster for Pena, who hasn't played in the bigs since '08 but has a .363/.439/.726 line with 21 home runs in 271 Triple-A plate appearances.  Today's links…

  • Braves GM Frank Wren spoke to Dave O'Brien of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution about the state of the trade market, saying teams are "starting to reach out and talk to each other." He added that they "talked to a number of clubs about where they think they’re going to be going at the trade deadline, but that’s even somewhat nebulous on a lot of clubs."
  • Geoff Baker of The Seattle Times explored the idea of the Mariners trading either Jason Vargas or Doug Fister for offensive help and tried to figure out what a realistic return would be.
  • In today's Insider-only blog post, ESPN's Buster Olney mentions that Grant Balfour of the Athletics is among the relievers expected to be available this summer. He speculates that the Rangers could be a fit.
  • Brian MacPherson of The Providence Journal looked at how the Red Sox were about to snag Anthony Rizzo in the sixth round three years before he was a key piece in the Adrian Gonzalez trade.
  • NPB has decided against pursuing changes to the posting system according to a Japanese report passed along by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker. Reasons include the difficulty of changing things on MLB's side, as well as the potential for large posting fees offered by the current system.
  • In the wake of Andrew Miller's return to the big leagues, WEEI.com's Alex Speier listed the seven pitchers in the last 15 years that reached the Majors the year they were drafted. It's not a pretty list.

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