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Sleep apnea almost caused Red Sox's Mike Napoli to retire


by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1/26/2015) Dealing with sleep apnea almost caused Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli to retire prematurely from baseball, reports the Boston Globe.

"I couldn't do it anymore, feeling the way I was feeling," Napoli said. "I was like, 'I need to have the surgery or I'm not going play anymore.' That's how bad it was."

During the offseason, Napoli underwent facial reconstruction surgery to correct the condition, which was preventing him from getting a proper night of rest.

"It was a brutal process," Napoli said. "It was probably one of the worse things I've ever done."

With the surgery a success and Napoli recovered from losing weight due to a six-week liquid diet, Napoli is now sleeping better than he ever has.

Before the surgery, Napoli turned to medication, mouthpieces and a CPAP mask, but said those problems are now behind him.

"I wake up now and I'm ready to start my day," he said. "It's great."


Tigers' Miguel Cabrera not expected to miss much time with injury


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/25/2015) Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera is not expected to miss much time with his ankle injury, according to the Detroit Free Press

Cabrera had ankle surgery to remove bone spurs shortly after the season, and has been recovering during the offseason. He was recently cleared to ditch his walking boot, and will be re-evaluated by team doctors on Feb. 15. General manager Dave Dombrowski told reporters Cabrera shouldn't miss much time due to the injury. "We're hopeful at that point he gets turned loose," Dombrowski said. "If he's not ready for Opening Day, it's going to be very, very close."

The 31-year-old Cabrera hit .313/.371/.524 over 611 at-bats last year. 


Twins' Joe Mauer says his legs feel strong heading into 2015


by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(1/25/2015) Twins first baseman Joe Mauer said his legs feel strong heading into 2015, according to the Star Tribune.

Mauer was able to fully participate in an offseason training program after injuries prevented him from doing so last year. Mauer said his left knee, which has given him trouble in the past, feels strong now. :It’s tough to hit when the knee I’ve had problems with isn’t right," Mauer said. "That’s where you get your power from and the ball jumps. I feel good. I’m excited to get out there."

The 31-year-old Mauer is coming off a season in which he hit .277/.361/.371 over 455 at-bats.


Twins' Joe Mauer says he is in 'good place' heading into spring


by Sean d'Oliveira | CBSSports.com
(1/24/2015) Twins first baseman Joe Mauer said he feels great physically after being able to spend the entire offseason working out and not recovering from an injury, reports the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Mauer spent last offseason recovering from a concussion, but it appears spending the entire the offseason working out has paid off for Mauer.

"I haven't had an offseason like this in a long time," Mauer said. "Made some great strides in the gym."

In 2014, Mauer hit .277 with four home runs and 55 RBI in 455 at-bats.


Tigers GM: Avila could see 1B time if Cabrera isn't ready for opener


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/24/2015) Tigers president and general manager Dave Dombrowski said Saturday that if Miguel Cabrera is unable to play when the season opens, the team will look to Alex Avila as a possible short-term replacement at first base, per MLB.com.

"If he's not ready by opening day, it's gonna be very, very close. We'll know more Feb. 15," Dombrowski said.

Cabrera underwent right ankle surgery to remove bone spurs and to repair a stress fracture in a bone at the top of his foot on Oct. 22. He was cleared to remove his walking boot earlier in January and is expected to be reexamined on Feb. 15, right before Detroit's first full-squad workouts.


White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu could see more days off in 2015


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/24/2015) White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu might see a dip in playing time at first with the addition of Adam LaRoche, but he is preparing to be ready all season long.

"I'm excited about the depth we have right now," Abreu said. "That is something good and will put us in the position to compete and I'm very excited about that. 

"I've been working the same way on my defense. It doesn't matter if I'm playing more or less games because that is part of my game. I have to be a complete player and I can't work less and still be that. I have the same mentality, it doesn't matter who will be on the team. I just prepare myself to be successful and 100 percent on the field."

Abreu hit .317 in 2014 with 36 home runs and 107 RBI. He was also unanimously voted the AL Rookie of the Year.


Indians' Brandon Moss hoping to be in starting lineup Opening Day


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/23/2015) Newly acquired outfielder Brandon Moss is hoping to be in the starting lineup for the Indians Opening Day, but knows he needs to be healthy for the duration of the season.

"It's important to be healthy throughout the season," Moss said. "At the same time, my goal is to be ready for Opening Day. That should be everyone's goal, and be there for 162 games. I'm not afraid to say that. At the same time, what is best for the team and myself is to be 100 percent."

Moss is coming off of hip surgery in October after playing through pain for much of the 2014 season. He hit .234 with 25 home runs with 81 RBI with the Athletics last season.

I want to be healthy and do the things I do," Moss said. "And hopefully do what I can do with a full year of at-bats and health. Last year, before everything started to go south, I was figuring out my approach to all pitchers. Now, it's just a game of adjustments. I'm not going to put numbers on it, but I can have a special year, especially coming to this park."


Nick Swisher finds himself, ready for new season in Cleveland


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/23/2015) Indians outfielder Nick Swisher knew Cleveland was shopping him during the offseason. While recovering from a knee injury that forced him to miss 65 games, Swisher was beached on the couch, reading the Internet, filled with rumors about him.

"When you're going through those tough times," Swisher said Thursday to cleveland.com, "the love and passion for the game start to go away a little bit and you have to find something inside yourself to bring all that back. Whatever it was, I found it and I have it again and I could not be more happy for that."

Swisher found the motivation he needed to get back in shape and lost 15 pounds. After trying to play through the knee injury, Swisher admitted he should have had the surgery much sooner.

"I tried to battle through and be a tough guy," Swisher said. "To go out and not perform the way that you want to is obviously very stressful."

He hit a career low in 2014, going for a .208 average with eight home runs and 42 RBI.

"This organization paid me a lot of money for me to come over here and be on the field," Swisher said. "Whether I was healthy, I wanted to be out there every single day. Maybe that was the right call. Maybe it wasn't."


Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder says he's at 100 percent


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/23/2015) Rangers first baseman and designated hitter Prince Fielder told reporters Friday he's back to 100 percent and he could play in a pick up game and "I'm in there," according to ESPNDallas.com

"I'm just going to try to be healthy, that's my main goal," Fielder said. "I know I always said that before. But this was the first time I wasn't healthy, so it really means a lot to me now to try to stay healthy. That's just my goal -- to stay healthy and make sure I'm doing everything I can to be ready to play."

Fielder played in just 42 games in 2014 after having to have neck surgery. He hit .247 with three home runs and 16 RBI in 150 plate appearances.

"It was real difficult because I wasn't used to missing games," Fielder said. "So to miss a lot of the season, it was difficult at first, but I had to be an adult about it, kind of try to just get back healthy to be ready this year. I'm good, I'm 100 percent -- whatever it was before is back."


A's catcher Vogt (foot) expects to be ready for spring training


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/21/2015) Athletics catcher Stephen Vogt, who had surgery on his right foot in mid-October, was cleared to start running last week and expects to be ready when spring training opens in February, according to the Bay Area News Group.

“There is soreness, but there is no pain, so that’s a huge improvement for me,’’ Vogt said. “I played in pain for the last three months of the year, and that’s gone. So even with the soreness, I’m feeling good physically."

Last season, Vogt was part of a three-man rotation at catcher with John Jaso and Derek Norris. However, both players have been traded, so now Vogt will share playing time behind the plate with Josh Phegley.

“In losing Norris and Jaso, those are two friends of mine,’’ Vogt said. “We all fed off each other. So it will affect the team. On a personal level, I’m excited to get a chance to catch.’’

Vogt hit .279 with two triples, nine home runs, 10 doubles and 35 RBI in 84 games last season.


Gattis to play at 1B, DH for Astros; Bad news for Singleton, Carter?


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/21/2015) With the signing of Colby Rasmus, the Astros have an even more crowded outfield, but it also means Houston won't have to lean on Evan Gattis to play primarly in left field.

In fact, Astros general manager Jeff Lunhow expects Gattis to occasionally play in left field, but to primarily play at first base and DH. Although, that doesn't bode well for playing time for Jon Singleton and Chris Carter.

“We don’t know what Gattis is going to look like in left field,” Luhnow said, per the Houston Chronicle. “If he’s good out there or adequate, I’m sure he’ll get some at-bats out there. Is he going to be our everyday left fielder? I can’t imagine that happening with the guys that we have, but we want to have that bat in the lineup.

“Guys that have options are going to have to prove to us that they belong in the big leagues. I don’t think it’s just Singleton. Like I said, we’ve got multiple options at every position on the diamond now. So, you know, players may not be playing their preferred position -- that puzzle will come together in spring training. We’re only guessing to try to figure it out right now.”


Indians' Francona: Right now, David Murphy is our right fielder


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/20/2015) Indians manager Terry Francona said Tuesday outfielder David Murphy is penciled in as the starting right fielder since there are too many unknowns with Nick Swisher (knee) and Brandon Moss (hip) coming off surgeries.

"Right now, Murph's our right fielder," Francona said, per MLB.com.

Murphy started a team-high 109 games in right field for Cleveland in 2014. He hit .262 with eight home runs, 25 doubles and 58 RBI in 129 games.


Report: Orioles 1B Chris Davis to earn $12 million in 2015


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) Orioles first baseman Chris Davis will earn $12 million in 2015 after agreeing to a one-year deal with the team and avoiding arbitration, the Baltimore Sun reports.

Davis' contract also includes incentives for reaching 550 and 575 plate appearances as well as bonuses for All Star, Gold Golve and Silver Slugger awards. Eligible for arbitration for the final time this offseason, the first baseman hit .196/.300/.404 with 26 home runs and 72 RBI in 450 at-bats in 2014.


Report: Mariners, Austin Jackson agree to $7.7-million deal


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) The Mariners have avoided arbitration with outfielder Austin Jackson by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $7.7 million, the Seattle Times reports.

The team was able to avoid arbitration with five players in all Friday by agreeing to the terms of one-year contracts for each player. First basman Logan Morrison is scheduled to make $2.725 million with incentives for reaching 500 and 600 plate appearances. Outfielder Dustin Ackley will take in $2.6 million as well as another $50,000 bonus for reaching 500 plate appearances.

Outfielder Justin Ruggiano, who was acquired from the Cubs earlier this offseason, will make $2.5 million and can earn another $20,000 if he reaches 375 plate appearances. Pitcher Charlie Furbush will earn $1.3 million.


Report: First baseman Steve Pearce files for $5.4 million in arbitration


by Brandon Wise | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) The Orioles and first baseman Steve Pearce have begun the process for arbitration with Pearce asking for $5.4 million and Baltimore offering $2 million, according to the Baltimore Sun.

Pearce earned $850K in 2014, when he hit .293 with 21 home runs and 49 RBI.


Royals swap arbitration figures with Eric Hosmer, Greg Holland


by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer has filed for $6.7 million in arbitration, while closer Greg Holland has filed for $9 million, CBSSports.com baseball insider Jon Heyman reports.

The Royals offered $4.6 million to Hosmer, who hit .270/.318/.398 with nine home runs and 58 RBI in 503 at-bats in 2014. He's in his first year of arbitration eligibility.

Holland, who is in his second year of arbitration eligibility, was offered $6.65 million by the team. He tallied 46 saves while posting a 1.44 ERA and 90:20 K:BB ratio in 62 1/3 innings.


Mariners avoid arbitration with five players


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) The Mariners reached agreements with five players Friday, avoiding arbitration with reliever Charlie Furbush, first baseman Logan Morrison and outfielders Dustin Ackley, Austin Jackson and Justin Ruggiano, according to The New Tribune.

Indians' Brandon Moss agrees to $6.5 million in 2015


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) The Indians have agreed to terms with first baseman/outfielder Brandon Moss on Friday, avoiding arbitration, CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman confirms. He's expected to make $6.5 million in 2015.

Moss was traded from the A's to the Indians in December. He was a first-time All-Star in 2014. He has 20-plus homers in three straight seasons. Last season he hit .234/.334/.438 with 25 home runs and 81 RBI in 500 at-bats in 2014.


O's avoid arbitration with Wieters, Tillman, Davis, Matusz


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/16/2015) The Orioles have locked up catcher Matt Wieters, starter Chris Tillman, first baseman Chris Davis and reliever Brian Matusz on Friday, avoiding arbitration, according to MASN Sports, the Baltimore Sun and CBSSports.com Baseball Insider Jon Heyman.

Wieters will make $8.3 million and Matusz will make $3.2 million. Meanwhile, Tillman reached a $4.315 million settlement for 2015. He earned $546,000 last year.


Tigers 1B Miguel Cabrera (ankle) ditches walking boot


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/15/2015) Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera was cleared to remove his walking boot, per his social media account on Thursday.

Cabrera underwent right ankle surgery to remove bone spurs and to repair a stress fracture in a bone at the top of his foot on Oct. 22.. He had the boot removed by his surgeon, Dr. Robert Anderson, and will be wearing arched shoes for during "daily living" for the next month before his CT scan in February, team trainer Kevin Rand told MLive.com. His CT scan appointment will come a week before Detroit's first full-squad workouts.

"He's cleared to walk with that during activities of daily living here for the next month before he's reexamined in February," Rand said. "Hopefully at that time in February it'll come back clean and he'll be cleared to start conditioning activities, running and such."

Cabrera remains without a timetable to start a full conditioning program. His status for the season opener will likely depend on the results of his exam.


Red Sox's Napoli back up to 230 pounds, to resume hitting Friday


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/15/2015) Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli, who underwent surgery in November to address sleep apnea, is expected to resume hitting Friday, agent Brian Greiper told The Boston Globe. Grieper added Napoli is back up to 230 pounds after losing weight following the surgery because he was unable to eat.

Aside from dealing with sleep apnea, Napoli also dealt with injuries to his finger, toe, knee and back in 2014. He was limited to 119 games last season, batting .248 with 17 home runs, 20 doubles and 55 RBI. Napoli hit .259 with 23 home runs, 38 doubles and 82 RBI in 2013.


Orioles' Coolbaugh: Chris Davis is 'going to have a great year'


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/13/2015) New Orioles hitting coach Scott Coolbaugh said Tuesday he has supervised a couple of slugger Chris Davis' workouts in Dallas, according to MASNsports.com. 

Prior to joining the Orioles' coaching staff, Coolbaugh worked in the Rangers' organization and worked with Davis in the minors leagues, when Davis was with Texas. Davis has welcomed Coolbaugh's addition as he is coming off a disappointing season in 2014.

"It's like anything else," Coolbaugh said. "I think it's getting back to the mental focus of where you want to be, where you come from, get back to that Chris Davis that we know. I think he's going to have a great year and I'm looking forward to spending time with him this year."

Coolbaugh hinted Davis might have put a little too much pressure on himself last season after he belted 53 home runs in 2013.

"Sometimes it's more of the mental thing, that you try to do too much, try to live up to what he did in 2013," he said. "You try to chase what you're doing and those things happen because of a process, not based on chasing results. I think he just got away from that probably a little bit and lost himself."


Mark Appel, Carlos Correa among Astros' non-roster invites


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/13/2015) The Astros announced Tuesday they will have 17 non-roster invites for spring training, including starting pitcher prospect Mark Appel and shortstop prospect Carlos Correa. Appel was the No. 1 pick in the 2013 MLB draft, while Correa was the No. 1 pick in 2012.

The other non-roster invitees are outfielder Andrew Aplin, pitcher Darin Downs, infielder Matt Duffy, catcher Luis Flores, infielder Nolan Fontana, catcher Tyler Heineman, pitcher Jordan Jankowski, infielder Dan Johnson, infielder Colin Moran, catcher Roberto Pena, infielder Gregorio Petit, pitcher Brady Rodgers, infielder Joe Sclafani, pitcher Jason Stoffel and outfielder Preston Tucker.

Correa (No. 1) and Appel (No. 2) are considered the team's top two prospects, according to Baseball America. Moran (No. 7) is also considered a top-10 prospect.


Tigers 1B Miguel Cabrera likely won't be full go at start of camp


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1/12/2015) The Tigers aren't expecting first baseman Miguel Cabrera, who is recovering from ankle surgery, to be full go at the start of spring training, trainer Kevin Rand said Monday.

Cabrera is scheduled to wear a walking boot until a mid-February follow-up exam with Dr. Robert Anderson, who performed the surgery in October. If all goes well, Cabrera will be cleared for baseball activities. The Tigers begin full-squad workouts Feb. 24.

"Obviously, he isn’t a position from a conditioning standpoint at that point," Rand said, per MLB.com.

The Tigers still aren't certain about Cabrera's opening-day status. Detroit opens the season April 6 against the Twins.

"That’s too far out right now," Rand said. "First of all, we have to get him cleared to do the activities."

Cabrera is currently doing partial weight-bearing activities.


Tigers' Miguel Cabrera (ankle) to have CT scan in February


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(1/10/2015) Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera is currently in a partial weight-bearing stage of his recovery from offseason ankle surgery. He'll need to pass a CT scan in February when he consults with Robert Anderson, a Charlotte, N.C., orthopedic surgeon in order to move into a full weight-bearing program, reports the Detroit News.

"His rehab has gone well," Tigers head athletic trainer Kevin Rand said on Friday. "He's in a partial weight-bearing stage, six weeks in a boot, which began just before Christmas. He'll get back and see Dr. Anderson next month and hope the CT scan will show that everything's well and that he can move into a full weight-bearing program."

It remains to be seen if Cabrera will be at 100 percent in time for opening day.


 
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Fan Poll

Which of these third basemen would you want on your teams for the second half?

Nolan Arenado, Rockies
17%
Manny Machado, Orioles
25%
Todd Frazier, Reds
33%
Martin Prado, Diamondbacks
4%
Kyle Seager, Mariners
17%
Pedro Alvarez, Pirates
4%

Total Votes: 3,689