MLB Roundup: Manny Machado returning to baseball activities, teams interested in Suk-Min Yoon

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Machado is pleased with the progress on his knee and is taking the next steps forward toward a return.

Machado progressing

Following a visit with a doctor Friday, Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado has been cleared to resume some baseball activities, reports Stephania Bell of ESPN.

Dr. Neal ElAttrache says that Machado is able to do some running, hitting and fielding. All will be done on a progressive scale, meaning he is likely to begin doing light exercises and slowly advance until he is at full strength. Machado is working his way back from a late-season knee injury in which he tore his medial patellofemoral ligament. Originally expected to miss 4-6 months, there is still no official timetable for his return.

The injury ended a season in which Machado hit .283/.314/.432 with 14 home runs and a league-leading 51 doubles while earning his first All Star bid, his first Gold Glove, and finishing ninth in AL MVP voting. Still just 21 years old, he is regarded as one of the best defensive players in all of baseball.

Two new teams eyeing Korean pitcher

The San Francisco Giants and Baltimore Orioles both watched South Korean pitcher Suk-Min Yoon at a showing on the campus of UC-Irvine, according to Korean media reports (via MyKBO.net).

Both the Minnesota Twins and Boston Red Sox had been known to have an interest in Yoon. However, the right-hander has received at least four solid contract offers from major league teams and could sign soon. Thus, one could assume that the Orioles and Giants may have enough interest to have offered a deal. While the Twins have been the most oft-mentioned team in pursuit of Yoon, they have yet to meet with him since he arrived in America.

Yoon is coming off a down season in Korea with a 4.00 ERA while splitting the season between starting and relief. A mysterious shoulder injury necessitated a move to the bullpen, though he hopes to be a member of a team's rotation in America. Yoon won the 2011 Korean MVP award when he posted a 2.45 ERA and 178 strikeouts over 173 innings.

Dodgers, Ellis avoid arbitration

The Los Angeles Dodgers and catcher A.J. Ellis have avoided arbitration after agreeing Saturday to a $3.45 million deal for 2014, reports Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

Ellis had filed for $4.6 million while the team made an offer of $3 million. Thus, Ellis settled for $350,000 less than the midpoint of $3.8 million.

Ellis, 33, is in his second year of arbitration and will not be eligible for free agency until after the 2016 season. He has been the Dodgers' starting catcher the past two years, hitting .238/.318/.364 with 10 home runs in 2013.

Padres ink Tony Sipp

The San Diego Padres signed pitcher Tony Sipp to a minor league deal, reports Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish.

Sipp was invited to major league spring training. His contract contains two dates on which he can opt out of his deal: The first is on March 26 and the second on June 1.

Sipp, 30, has spent extensive time in the major leagues over the past five seasons, pitching in 304 games. He spent 2013 with the Diamondbacks, posting a 4.78 ERA over 56 games. His best season came in 2009 when, as a rookie, he notched a 2.93 ERA.

Marlins minor-leaguer suspended

Miami Marlins prospect Ronny Fermin has been suspended 50 games for violating MLBs drug policy, according to a statement released by the league Friday night.

Fermin, 19, just signed a minor league contract out of the Dominican Republic in November and had been assigned to the Gulf Coast League. He tested positive for Metabolites of Stanozolol, a performance enhancing substance. He has yet to pitch professionally in America.

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