Orioles likely to look internally to fill openings
Kubatko says Tommy Hunter is the "clear favorite" to win the closer role. After years of struggles as a starter, Hunter moved to the bullpen full-time in 2013 and was one of the best relievers in Baltimore. He pitched in 68 games and posted a 2.81 ERA and 0.99 WHIP while striking out 68 batters.
Darren O'Day is likely to be the other top option to finish games in Baltimore. He has a 2.23 ERA combined over the past two seasons while averaging nearly a strikeout per inning. Whichever of Hunter and O'Day doesn't close will certainly be a top set-up option.
Meanwhile, Ryan Flaherty appears to be the likely starter at second base to open the season. He has been used as a utility player each of the last two seasons, hitting .221/.279/.378 overall. Despite a lackluster bat, he plays good defense. Flaherty would also only be a temporary stop-gap until top prospect Jonathan Schoop is ready for the majors.
Phillies will pay to move Papelbon
Taking on a good portion of the contract is likely the only way the Phillies would be able to move Papelbon. How much they offer to pay may help dictate what kind of return they would receive. However, they would have to eat nearly the entire deal to bring in anything worthwhile from a trade partner.
The Phillies signed Papelbon to a four-year contract worth $50 million prior to the 2012 season. He also has an option for 2016 worth another $13 million that vests if he finishes 55 games in 2015 or 100 between 2014-15. He has finished more than 50 games each of the last seven seasons, and has finished at least 55 games three times since 2008.
Papelbon, 33, posted a 2.92 ERA with a 1.14 WHIP over 61 games in 2013. He has maintained an ERA under 3.00 each of the last three seasons.
Padres hire Kotsay
Kotsay retired as a player following the 2013 season having played 17 seasons with seven different franchises, including two stints with the Padres. The first came from 2001-03, when he patrolled center field full-time in San Diego. He also finished his career with the Padres, spending the last two seasons as a veteran bench player.
It has been a recent trend for newly retired players to join a front office in a special advisor role. It allows the players to stay involved in the game without needing to be involved 24/7.
Grandal may open season on DL
Grandal had ACL surgery in August, but had said previously that he hoped to be ready in time for spring training. While that goal was optimistic, there was a small chance that he could be back in action sometime before April. With such a severe injury, it's more likely that he will need more time.
He played in just 28 games in 2013, having served a 50 game suspension at the beginning of the year and missing the second half due to the ACL injury. He hit .216/.352/.341 when in the lineup and figures to be a long-time starter in San Diego when healthy.
Colabello turns down Korean offer
The Twins had an agreement in place to ship Colabello off, but any deal made must be ratified by the player. Instead, Colabello says he would like to remain focused on helping the Twins any way he can on the field.
Colabello, 30, reached the majors for the first time in 2013, hitting .194/.287/.344 over 55 games. He has been an outstanding hitter in the minors, however, hitting .352 with a 1.066 OPS and 24 home runs in just 89 games playing for Triple-A last year.