Red Sox slugger David Ortiz's tenure in Boston almost ended soon after he signed with the club, writes Alex Speier of WEEI.com. “When I wasn’t playing, I told [Theo Epstein] to release me or trade me, because I was better than the other guys he had here,” Ortiz said, recalling a time in May 2003. “He told me to give it some time, he’d make some moves, then I would play. And then I started playing and here I am still.” One of the moves to help ease the logjam ahead of Ortiz was sending Shea Hillenbrand to the D'Backs for Byung-Hyun Kim. More from around baseball..
- Joel Hanrahan trade rumors have died down somewhat but the Pirates could still deal the closer based on how the season unfolds, write Bob Cohn and Rob Biertempfel of the PIttsburgh Tribune-Review. However, the club would need to receive an offer that they absolutely could not refuse.
- Execs are wondering if the Phillies will go into sell mode in July if they don't get healthy and turn things around quickly, writes Joel Sherman of the New York Post.
- Pitcher Mark Prior is attempting another comeback in the Red Sox system and reliever Clayton Mortensen told Alex Speier of WEEI.com that the veteran is close to being big league ready.