Verlander had his worst season in five years in 2013, posting a 3.46 ERA in 218⅓ innings. His walk rate was the highest it had been since 2008, and the 30-year-old right-hander struck out batters at his second-worst rate since that season. Still, he managed to be selected to the American League all-star squad for the fifth consecutive year and led the league in games started for the third time in five seasons.
Tony La Russa has sent a resume to the Seattle Mariners as a means of expressing his interest in their vacant team president position, according to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal. That goes along with the news that the Mariners have La Russa on their short list of candidates to fill the opening, as reported by USA Today's Bob Nightengale.
The Mariners prefer to fill the spot with an internal candidate, notes Nightengale, but aren't opposed to looking at an outside presence in the case that the in-house options prove to be unqualified.
Conlin passes away
Longtime Philadephia sports writer Bill Conlin passed away on Thursday in Largo, Fla., according to CSNPhilly.com. Conlin was 79.
Conlin was best-known for his coverage of baseball during a five-decade stint with the Philadelphia Bulletin and Philadelphia Daily News. He was the recipient of the Baseball Writers Association of America's J.G. Taylor Spink Award in 2011, just months before retiring amid allegations of child molestation.
Suzuki, Twins contract details
Kurt Suzuki, who signed a one-year, $2.75 million contract with the Minnesota Twins on Dec. 23, can make an additional $500,000 in playing time incentives, according to Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. The 30-year-old backstop, whose presence on the roster allows Joe Mauer to move to first base, can earn $100,000 for reaching the 85- and 95-start markers, and an additional $150,000 for his 105th and 115th starts.
Puig gives up driving
Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig has turned his keys over to a cousin after being cited for reckless driving twice in an eight-month span, team president Stan Kasten said in a radio interview on Thursday (via ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon).
Puig was busted going 97 mph in a 50 mph zone in Tennessee in April. He was once again caught driving at excessive speeds in December, being clocked at 110 in an area with a speed limit of 70 in Florida.
The Marlins added right-handed pitcher Jesus Sanchez, left-handed pitcher Josh Spence, infielder Juan Diaz and outfielder Matt Angle, in addition to the previously announced signings of Kevin Slowey and Joe Benson.