Dale Zanine - USA Today Sports
Dale Zanine - USA Today Sports

Cubs News: The Hot Corner: Maddon's Birthday, Universal DH update, Hot Stove, and more

by - Columnist -

Latest news and rumors:

Cubs’ news and notes

Cubs’ Opening Day: 48 days. (March 28 vs. Rangers)

Pitchers/Catchers Report: 5 Days.

First Spring Training game: 15 Days. (Saturday, February 23, Brewers vs. Cubs at Sloan Park)

Baseball abroad: According to the Chicago Tribune, "Two people familiar with the discussions [regarding play in London] tell The Associated Press that Major League Baseball is considering one of two matchups for its 2020 series in London: New York Mets vs. Washington Nationals or Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals."

Birthday Wishes: Happy birthday to Cubs’ skipper, Joe Maddon, who turns 65 today. Also celebrating a birthday today, is Cubs’ PA announcer, Andrew Belleson.

Latest news and rumors from around the league

No DH for now: Although there was speculation that the universal DH could be in play as early as this season, reports now say that MLB is opposed to any “near-term adoption” of the new rule. No reason was cited. However, it would appear that imposing the new rule beginning this spring might impair teams who have not planned for such changes.

“Some of these items need to be part of broader discussions that certainly will continue after opening day, and I hope we can focus on some of the issues that need to get resolved quickly in the interim,” MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said on Friday.

A matter of semantics: MLB, in its sometimes seemingly infinite wisdom, has done away with the DL (Disabled List). It will now be referred to as the “Injured List” although all rules regarding injuries and the list will remain the same.

Arbitration losses: Relievers, Kyle Barraclough (Nationals) and Ryan Tepera (Blue Jays), have lost their arbitration cases. The arbitration record for the winter now stands at 3-3.

Angels: The Halos have signed free-agent reliever, Daniel Hudson to a minor league deal worth up to $3M ($1.5M salary/$1.5M incentives).

Brewers: Milwaukee has signed free-agent RHP Josh Tomlin to a minor-league contract with an invitation to major-league spring training,

D-Backs: Arizona has signed right-hander, Michael Kohn to a minor league deal. Kohn will have a major league salary of $625k.

Giants: SF has agreed to a minor league deal with free-agent catcher, Rene Rivera.

Indians: Cleveland has signed free-agent outfielder, Matt Joyce. Meanwhile, Francisco Lindor could miss all of spring training with a right calf strain. The team expects him to "return to major-league game activity" in 7 to 9 weeks.

Mets: New York has signed infielder, Danny Espinosa to a minor league deal.

Orioles: Baltimore has designated shortstop, Jack Reinheimer, for assignment. Reinheimer is having some trouble finding a team, as the Orioles make the third team to DFA him this winter. Reinheimer was claimed off waivers by the Cubs in December but was designated a short time later.

Phillies: The Phils have signed infielder, Sean Rodriguez, to a minor league deal, and have invited him to spring training.

Rangers: Texas has signed former Giants’ OF, Hunter Pence to a minor league deal.

Royals: Take another reliever off the board, as the Royals have reached a deal with righty, Brad Boxberger.

Twins: Minnesota has signed veteran infielder, Adam Rosales to a minor league deal. Rosales will receive a $1M salary with another $250k available in incentives. Kohn also has the option to opt out of his deal on March 19, if he doesn’t make the major league roster.

White Sox: Chicago has signed outfielder, Brandon Guyer to a minor league deal. His salary will be $1.6M if he makes the big league roster.

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