On this date in 1997, the Yankees signed a 17-year-old named Yhency Brazoban as an amateur free agent. Over the next 14 years, Brazoban was traded for Kevin Brown, closed games for the Dodgers, signed minor league contracts with four different teams, and, most recently, allowed yesterday's game-tying homer to Albert Pujols. Here are this afternoon's links, as Brazoban and the Diamondbacks look to recover from last night's loss in St. Louis....
- Athletics minor leaguer Ian Krol was suspended indefinitely for a derogatory tweet, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter link). Krol, a left-hander who was selected in the seventh round of the 2009 draft, was ranked ninth among the A's prospects by Baseball America pre-season.
- Even contenders who are eyeing Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez as an eighth-inning guy have to worry about his vesting option, says ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Insider only). As one GM points out, if your team acquires Rodriguez as a setup man and your closer gets hurt, it would be hard to justify not inserting K-Rod into the role.
- Jim Bowden of ESPN.com examines five prospects taking part in today's Futures Game who trade deadline sellers might target.
- There are eight teams who should definitely be sellers at this point, argues Joel Sherman of the New York Post (via Twitter): the Blue Jays, Orioles, Royals, Athletics, Marlins, Cubs, Dodgers, and Padres.
- Despite being big spenders in Major League free agency, the Phillies are once again exercising restraint when it comes to international free agents, writes Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
- MLB.com's Bill Ladson (via Twitter) reiterates that the Nationals need to acquire a leadoff man, citing the team's .203/.270/.306 slash line from the top of the order.