The Reds signed Pete Rose as an amateur free agent on this date in 1960 and it's safe to say their investment paid off. Rose collected 3,358 hits in 19 seasons with the Reds en route to becoming MLB's all-time hits leader with 4,256. Here are today's links...
- Phillies starter Cole Hamels is heading into his final season of arbitration eligibility and as David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News shows in a pair of pieces, starters with Hamels-like production have been extremely well-paid in recent years. Hamels is earning $9.5MM this year in his third season of arbitration eligibility.
- Paul Hagen of the Philadelphia Daily News explains that the Phillies might want to acquire a right-handed hitter for their lineup to avoid becoming a regular season success that fails in the playoffs, like the 2001 Mariners.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports explains that being selected to play in the All-Star Game has made a difference for players like Jose Bautista and Joe Nathan, who have obtained more endorsement offers and had more leverage in contract discussions since becoming All-Stars for the first time.
- The teams on Joakim Soria's no-trade list have changed since last season, according to Morosi (on Twitter). The Yankees, Red Sox and Phillies are on the list, just as they were last year. The Tigers, Cardinals and Cubs were previously on Soria's list, which is designed to provide the reliever with leverage.
- Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles are communicating semi-regularly with J.J. Hardy about a possible extension. The Orioles began extension talks with the shortstop last week.
- Atlanta GM Frank Wren told Mark Bowman of MLB.com that the pieces the Braves are looking for may already be on their roster.