Last night we heard the the Indians have begun to schedule their arbitration hearings, with right-hander Vinnie Pestano's set to come on Friday and Josh Tomlin's set to come on Feb. 14. The team can still work out a deal with either pitcher between now and those dates, but hearings are becoming more likely each day. More AL Central news…
- Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN tweets that the Twins are expected to be among the teams in attendance for Ryan Madson's showcase on Friday. The former Phillies closer hasn't pitched in the Majors since 2011 and has been connected to the Mets and the Phillies in recent weeks.
- Twins third baseman Trevor Plouffe isn't dreading the arrival of top prospect Miguel Sano, even though the 20-year-old Sano could take Plouffe's everyday job at third base, writes Dave Campbell of the Associated Press. Rather, Plouffe has befriended the Dominican slugger and looks forward to his arrival in Minnesota, even if it pushes Plouffe into a utility role: "I want to help the team win. That's all I really care about. Miguel is a great player, and if he comes up and helps our team, we want him. … If Sano's going to come up and help us, let's go."
- Although recently DFA'ed Royals infielder Emilio Bonifacio's $3.5MM salary is "probably an overpay," Mike Petriello of Fangraphs feels that he could be an improvement to nearly half the teams in the Majors. Bonifacio's baserunning has been the eighth most valuable in the game dating back to 2010 despite having 1,000 or so fewer PAs than most ahead of him on the list, and he's able to back up at third base and center field in addition to playing a solid second base, Petriello argues.