Minus blockbuster deals and signings, Winter Meetings end with lots of unanswered questions

LAS VEGAS - The symbol for this year's Winter Meetings is the strikingly empty scene at the far end of the media work room at the Madalay Bay Resort and Casino: There's a stage with a backdrop, podium and microphone, risers for TV cameras and a couple of hundred chairs lined neatly into rows. The tableau is baseball's version of a ghost town. Except for ... read more

With an assist from Nationals, Reds begin reworking their starting staff

LAS VEGAS - Nationals pitcher Tanner Roark was traded Wednesday to the Reds, a team that's trying to rebuild its rotation and recover from four consecutive seasons of at least 90 losses. The Reds have had nothing but pitching problems. Last year, their staff gave up 5.06 runs a game, highest in the National League. The staff finished 14th in ERA (4.63) in 2018 and ... read more

Spending spree underway, how deep and full are Phillies' pockets?

LAS VEGAS - The Phillies came into the offseason promising to spend money to add pitching, defense and a power bat for the lineup. On Tuesday, the second day of baseball's Winter Meetings at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, the Phillies agreed to terms with outfielder Andrew McCutchen on a three-year, $50 million deal, pending a physical. But even with that kind of spending, reports ... read more

For openers, Rays expect bullpenning strategy is here to stay

LAS VEGAS - The Rays redefined their pitching strategy last season, and they are getting ready to use the same philosophy in 2019. That is, they will continue to do their bullpenning. "We're going to see it happen," Rays manager Kevin Cash said during a press conference Monday at the Winter Meetings at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. "We're going to do it." Why ... read more

With deals coming fast and furious, Winter Meetings convene in Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS - Why wait until the Winter Meetings? Baseball's Winter Meetings will go on this week at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, even though the deals have been coming fast and furious since the offseason began, especially with teams in the National League East. The Cardinals have traded for first baseman Paul Goldschmidt. The Red Sox have signed Nathan Eovaldi and pitcher Carlos ... read more

In strong first-time class, Mariano Rivera seems like a slam dunk for Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame ballot is out, and the slam dunk among the ballot's first-time players is Yankees closer Mariano Rivera, who had 652 career saves with one pitch, a cut fastball that was deadly. Members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America will start their deliberations and their ballots are due Dec. 31. The Hall of Fame announcement is Jan. 22 and the induction ... read more

Mauer presents complicated case for Hall of Fame

Joe Mauer's Hall of Fame case is complicated. If Mauer, 35, who officially announced his retirement Monday, is judged as one of the game's best-hitting catchers, then he'll be in Cooperstown. If the final five seasons of his 15-year career figure into the case, it could be a different story. It's shaping up to be a long debate. Mauer, playing for the Minnesota Twins, is ... read more

Baseball writers blew it with MVP snub of Martinez

The awards week has arrived with a humdinger of a debate: Did the baseball writers make a mistake by not including Boston's J.D. Martinez in the top three for the American League MVP? The answer is yes. We'll know more about why when the votes are released next week, but this is a whopper of a mistake by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. The ... read more