A fresh batch of links for Wednesday afternoon…
- Richard Justice of the Houston Chronicle highlights some of the positives and negatives of the ongoing Drayton McLane era in Houston. "This is his franchise," writes Justice, "and he's certainly no absentee owner. He's front and center for all the good and all the bad."
- According to David Roeder of the Chicago Sun-Times, the IRS may be planning to challenge the Tribune Co.'s sale of the Cubs. The Tribune is attempting to save about $300 million in capital gains taxes with the sale, but is also maintaining a 5 percent stake in the franchise. So it's really more of a partnership.
- Milton Bradley's mother, Charlena Rector, told the Sun-Times' Chris DeLuca Tuesday that her son is open to returning to the Cubs. Of course, GM Jim Hendry and Co. probably don't want him back.
- MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan lays out several facts regarding the sale of the Texas Rangers. For what it's worth, Major League Baseball is hoping the sale price will be over $500MM.
- As Adam Kilgore of the Boston Globe notes, Ramon Ramirez is extremely happy with the trade that brought him to Boston last winter. “I love these guys,’’ the reliever said Tuesday. “It’s been great to be in Boston. I’m enjoying it. It’s been a good time. This is a great team.’’ He's done well for himself, too, posting a 2.67 ERA and a .227 BAA.
- ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick highlights nine players who are, as he puts it, "at a career crossroads." Among the names? Delmon Young, B.J. Upton and Francisco Liriano.