Real live baseball was played in Florida and Arizona today, even though it was nothing more than a handful of exhibition games. That's better than nothing in my book. Here's some links for Saturday…
- Bob Dutton of The Kansas City Star breaks down the Royals' roster issues, explaining why some of their top prospects won't break camp with the team even though they may be MLB ready.
- Examiner.com's Stephen Goff hears that the Astros are looking at UConn RHP Matt Barnes, Kentucky RHP Alex Meyer, Hawaii 2B Kolten Wong, and Indiana OF Alex Dickerson for their first round pick in this summer's draft, #11 overall (all Twitter links).
- Jon Heyman of SI.com (via Twitter) spoke to a scout who believes that the three prospects the Phillies received for Cliff Lee may never be heard from again. The club recieved J.C. Ramirez, Phillippe Aumont, and Tyson Gillies in the trade that sent Lee to the M's.
- The Athletics' bullpen has improved a great deal this winter, writes Jeff Fletcher of AOL Fanhouse.
- More on Dennys Reyes from Rob Bradford of WEEI.com, who writes that Reyes' deal with the Phillies fell through when the two sides could not agree on "two clauses" in the proposed contract.
- Dennys Reyes can opt out of his minor league contract with the Red Sox on March 26th, reports WEEI.com's Rob Bradford (on Twitter). Reyes is competing with fellow lefties Andrew Miller, Rich Hill, and Randy Williams for a spot in Boston's bullpen.
- In today's blog post at ESPN (Insider req'd), Buster Olney says that Michael Young is no longer talking about his trade demand, "but he seemingly hasn't taken it off the table, either." It appears that Young was bothered by the team's pursuit of Jim Thome and acquisition of Mike Napoli after he agreed to a DH/utility role.
- Joel Sherman of The New York Post updates everyone on Mark Prior, who he believes was on the path to becoming baseball's first $150MM pitcher. Prior is in camp with the Yankees on a minor league pact and knows he'll have to prove himself against Triple-A competition before returning to the big leagues. "It is not the career path I envisioned, but it is the career path I am on," said Prior. "So be it. No regrets."
- Dylan Hernandez of The Los Angeles Times looks at the Dodgers' economical approach to left-field. Marcus Thames and Jay Gibbons are expected to platoon at the position, and are guaranteed just $1.4MM combined in 2011. Tony Gwynn Jr., Gabe Kapler, and the out-of-options Xavier Paul also figure into that mix.