Ravens

Selig reviewing pending Marlins-Blue Jays deal

201211151331487177624-p2.jpeg

Selig reviewing pending Marlins-Blue Jays deal

ROSEMONT, Ill. (AP) Bud Selig was on hand when the Miami Marlins played their first regular-season game in their swanky new ballpark in April. The commissioner provided a glowing review of the $634 million project and boldly declared that opposition to the facility would fade away within five years.

So far, it's not looking so good for that last prediction.

Selig said Thursday he is examining the pending blockbuster trade that sends at least three of Miami's best players to Toronto for a package of prospects just seven months after the Marlins moved into their new home, which was financed primarily with tax money.

Speaking at the conclusion of the owners' meetings, Selig said he also is aware of fan anger in South Florida but is going to do what's in the best interests of the sport.

``People have different views of that as to what you should do and how you should do it, but I think I've been able to come through all these situations and the sport's been stronger and better as a result,'' he said, pointing to his recent experience with the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Dodgers going through bankruptcy proceedings.

``So when I say I have this matter under review and I've talked to a lot of our people and I've spent a lot of time here in between all the other meetings - this is a tough place to do it - that's exactly what I mean. It is under review. I am aware of the anger, I am. I'm also aware that in Toronto they're very happy.''

The Blue Jays, who finished fourth in the loaded AL East last season, are bringing in All-Star shortstop Jose Reyes, left-hander Mark Buehrle and right-hander Josh Johnson under the deal, which is contingent on physicals for the players. Selig also said there is money going from Miami to Toronto, but did not offer any details and said the trade hadn't been officially presented to his office yet.

Reyes and Buehrle signed lucrative free-agent contracts with the Marlins last offseason, and Johnson has been Miami's best pitcher when healthy.

The Marlins get infielders Yunel Escobar and Adeiny Hechavarria, right-hander Henderson Alvarez and several top prospects, a nice haul but certainly not enough to satisfy a fan base that went through similar rebuilding after the franchise won the World Series in 1997 and 2003.

``I've talked to two baseball people - I have a lot of people that I check with and talk to - who have, actually, an interesting view on the trade.'' Selig said at an airport hotel just outside of Chicago. ``They think that (Miami), in terms of young players, did very well. These are two independent baseball people. These are not chefs in these kitchens here.

``So I want to think about all of it and I want to review everything. I want to be my usual painstaking, cautious, slow, conservative self in analyzing it. ... There's a lot of variables here.''

Paul Beeston, the president and CEO of the Blue Jays, rushed by a group of reporters as he left the owners' meetings. Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria was seen in the lobby at the hotel but did not make himself available to media.

Loria went on a spending spree last offseason, also signing free-agent closer Heath Bell. The Marlins thought they would contend for the NL East title and draw 3 million fans in the first year of their ballpark.

But they flopped, finishing last in the division. Bell was traded to Arizona in October, with the Marlins agreeing to pay $8 million of the remaining $21 million owed to the reliever.

Asked Thursday if it's in the best interests of baseball for Loria to continue to own a franchise, Selig said he wasn't going to comment any further other than saying the trade is under review.

``I know what the commissioner can do, can't do, what his legal responsibilities are,'' he said. ``I understand the feeling and in the end I'll do what I've done in the other past situations. People always ask me, `Boy, don't you wish it didn't happen?' Well, there are a lot of situations I wish hadn't happened, but they have, and then I have to try to do what I have to do.''

Also Thursday:

-Owners approved new television deals with ESPN, Turner Sports and Fox worth about $12.4 billion from 2014-21, according to Selig.

-Joe Torre, MLB's executive vice president for baseball operations, said the league still is looking into expanded use of instant replay.

``Whether we do something for next season or not, I think by the time we start next season I'm confident we'll have a plan,'' he said.

-There was no update on the situation in Northern California, where Oakland wants to build a ballpark in San Jose - an area that is part of the San Francisco Giants' territory.

``I know people say `Gee, it should be easy to do,''' Selig said. ``Well, the more they've gotten into it, the more complicated it's gotten. But we're headed for resolution.''

-Selig is planning to travel to next month's winter meetings to speak to team doctors and trainers about drug testing, and he reiterated his support for baseball's drug program and its penalties.

---

Jay Cohen can be reached athttp://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

Quick Links

Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Michael Pierce responds to last week's dismissal from practice

michael-pierce-usat.jpg
USA TODAY Sports Images

Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Michael Pierce responds to last week's dismissal from practice

Kick off your Monday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news.

1. Last week, defensive tackle Michael Pierce was dismissed from practice after showing up in "less than ideal shape" according to The Athletic's Jeff Zrebiec. Pierce joined WSNP-FM 105.5 Friday where he responded to being dismissed from practice. “Throughout the offseason, I tend to lift more than run,” Pierce said. “Being a nose guard, I want to be strong or what not. I, honestly, just mismanaged my running a little bit.”

2. On the other hand, tight end Mark Andrews looks "bigger, faster and stronger" Zrebiec said. Andrews had a standout year last season as a rookie with three touchdowns and 34 catches for 552 yards. Zrebiec said Andrews has not slowed down and will be an even bigger asset to the Ravens offense this season.


Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Baltimore Ravens and Rotoworld for news points.

MORE RAVENS NEWS:

Quick Links

Free Agency Bracket: Noel Acciari vs. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare

Free Agency Bracket: Noel Acciari vs. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare

It is almost time for NHL free agency to begin, and the Capitals certainly have needs to fill and a limited budget. Who would be the best fit? Who would be the best free agent target for Washington to pursue? That’s what NBC Sports Washington wants to find out!

Our experts got together and made a bracket of the 16 best free agent fits. The bracket is divided into four regions: Third line forward, fourth line forward, depth defenseman and Caps’ free agent. Now we want you to tell us who you want to see rocking the red next year!

Every weekday we will match two free agents up against one another and present a case for each player. Then you get to vote and decide who advances!

Check out today’s matchup:

Region: Fourth line forwards

Noel Acciari vs. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare

2018-19 stats

Noel Acciari (27 years old): 72 games played with the Boston Bruins, 6 goals, 8 assists, 14 points, 12:59 TOI

Playoffs: 19 games played with the Boston Bruins, 2 goals, 2 assists, 4 points, 13:10 TOI

Pierre-Edouard Bellemare (34 years old): 76 games played with the Vegas Golden Knights, 6 goals, 9 assists, 15 points, 12:26 TOI

Playoffs: 6 games played with the Vegas Golden Knights, 0 goals, 0 assists, 11:44 TOI

Hockey-Graph contract projections

Noel Acciari: 2 years, $1,180,934 cap hit

Pierre-Edouard Bellemare: 2 years, $1,450,996 cap hit

The case for Noel Acciari

Plays a lot bigger than his 5-foot-10, 205-pound frame. A perfect fit at right wing on the fourth line for Washington. The native New Englander, who played at Providence, is a home-grown Bruin and might not want to leave home, but Boston also might not have the cap space to double the salary of an obvious fourth-line player. 

Acciari is renowned for his character and toughness. He was a college captain for Providence and helped the Friars win an NCAA title in 2015. There’s never been a shot he’s unwilling to block. Acciari sustained a broken sternum in the second round against Columbus and a blocked shot with his right foot in Game 7 of the Cup Final left him in a walking boot. 

Acciari’s offensive upside is limited, but he did have 10 goals in 2017-18. He was a key player for the Bruins in the past two Stanley Cup playoffs and chipped in two goals in this year’s playoff run that came within a game of a championship. Acciari would help on Washington’s penalty kill, too. In 111:52 he was only on the ice for 11 power-play goals against. Only two Boston forwards were on the ice more short-handed.   

The case for Pierre-Edouard Bellemare

A late bloomer who grew into a bottom-six role for the Philadelphia Flyers and, the past two seasons, the Vegas Golden Knights. Bellemare held his own as an above-water possession player on a team that dominated in that area. But even when taking into account his usage and that he ranked lower than most of his teammates in that area, he was still about break even. 

No other forward logged as much time on the penalty kill for Vegas (147:54) and it wasn’t close. The Knights gave up just 18 power-play goals with Bellemare on the ice and scored three short-handed goals. He had two shortys in his time with the Flyers.

Bellemare won’t give you much offensively. He’s never reached double digits in goals or 20 points in a season. He’ll also turn 35 late next season. But he’s played in the Stanley Cup playoffs three of his four NHL seasons (31 games) and the Capitals remember him from the Cup Final in 2018. Bellemare had two assists in that series. He’s difficult to play against, would provide a veteran presence missing on the fourth line and was primarily a center for the Knights so he has positional versatility. 

Who’s your pick? Vote here. 

MORE CAPITALS NEWS