Noteworthy day (updated twice)

Today is the date that players and teams exchange arbitration figures, a process that makes my eyes glaze over.

These players aren't going anywhere. They can't become free agents. They just need to have their contracts finalized.

Here's the drill: The players' agents will submit a figure, the Orioles will make a counter offer and they'll end up settling near the middle.

I would care a lot more if half of it was being deposited in my checking account. Otherwise, they can make $500,000 or $5 million. It doesn't matter to me and it doesn't affect anything that happens between the white lines.

A long-term deal is another matter.

Anyway, Adam Jones and Jim Johnson agreed to one-year deals over the past few days - $3.25 million for Jones and $975,000 for Johnson, according to The Sun - so they're removed from the arbitration-eligible list. The Orioles still need to sign Jeremy Guthrie, Luke Scott, Felix Pie and J.J. Hardy.

As of late last night, the Orioles still hadn't contacted Scott's agent.

Update: It appears that the agents for Scott and Guthrie will be exchanging figures with the Orioles later this afternoon, rather than getting a deal done in advance. The Sun has reported that Pie reached agreement on a one-year deal worth $985,000.

Update II: Ken Rosenthal has tweeted this afternoon that the Orioles have come to an agreement with Hardy on a $5.85 million deal for 2011, meaning they've avoided arbitration with their starting shortstop.

In other news...

The ballistics test still hasn't come back that will determine whether the bullet that killed a 25-year-old man on New Year's Eve came from the gun that reliever Alfredo Simon turned into law enforcement officials in the Dominican. We were told when the process began that it could take days or months. I'm leaning more toward months.

Francisco de la Rosa, who pitched in two games for the Orioles in 1991, died earlier this month in Baltimore. He was 44.

Here's the translation of a wire story about de la Rosa's passing.

When I spoke to Johnson last week, he mentioned that he played catch at Ed Smith Stadium, where renovations continue leading up to spring training.

"It looks like most of the seats are up," he said. "They've still got a lot of exterior work left and they're really busting it out on the bullpens. I don't know if they're going to be done. I'm hoping. They've still got some work ahead of them, but it looks great."

Besides playing catch and getting ready for his first bullpen session, which should take place next week, Johnson has been organizing a charity golf tournament in Sarasota and moving into his new house.

"And I'm trying to be a good dad at the same time," Johnson said, after putting his 17-month-old daughter to bed.

Here's more on the golf tournament. Just scroll down.

The Babe Ruth Museum will host its annual Babe's Birthday Bash on Friday, Feb. 11 from 5:30-9:00 p.m. at Sports Legends Museum at Camden Yards. The event will celebrate the 116th anniversary of Ruth's birth in Baltimore on Feb. 6, 1895.

The museum also will present the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation with the 2011 Babe Ruth Museum Community Service Award, created to honor Ruth's memory by recognizing an active or former professional athlete or individual with ties to the Maryland sports community who has demonstrated a strong devotion to Baltimore and the state of Maryland by giving back to the community.

Previous recipients include Christina and Nick Markakis, Edwin Mulitalo, Brian Roberts and Melvin Mora.

Tickets are $45 each for members of the Babe Ruth Museum, $55 apiece for the general public when purchased in advance and $60 each at the door on the night of the event. Ten or more tickets purchased together are discounted at $40 each.

The evening will include admission to Sports Legends Museum's galleries, unlimited food and beverages, a silent auction, appearances by local professional and amateur athletes and free parking at Camden Yards. Tickets are available by contacting 410-727-1539 or visiting www.BabeRuthMuseum.com.


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