Avisail Garcia
White Sox's Avisail Garcia: Sheds 14 pounds in offseason
Avisail Garcia, DH, CHW
2/20/2017
News: Garcia lost 14 pounds while dedicating himself to getting in better shape this offseason, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

Coming off an unremarkable season in which he slashed .245/.307/.382 and posted a 0.5 WAR, Garcia will be hoping to use his slimmed-down figure to improve his agility on defense and on the bases. The 25-year-old outfielder enters the spring with a good chance of earning a starting spot on a White Sox team that is devoid of much outfield depth.

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Nelson Cruz
Mariners' Nelson Cruz: Excited about WBC and coming season
Nelson Cruz, DH, SEA
2/20/2017
News: Cruz, who will try to help the Mariners break their 15-year postseason drought in 2017, is highly optimistic about the coming season, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports. "I think we're more ready," the 36-year-old designated hitter said. "If you go from Kyle [Seager] to all the young guys that were here, guys that haven't been in the playoffs, the last week and a half last year was very exciting. Every at-bat was important, every pitch was important. But we came up short. So we need to make sure this year we're on top and clinch early."

The veteran slugger has a full schedule, considering he'll also be helping Team Dominican Republic defend its World Baseball Classic title alongside Mariners teammate Robinson Cano next month. Cruz's main focus is on his major league squad, however, as he attempts to help Seattle break its dubious streak of missing the postseason. Following an impressive 2016 campaign that saw him post a .287/.360/.555 line with 43 homers and 105 RBI, Cruz didn't rest on his laurels in the offseason, toiling away at the gym and checking in to spring training five pounds lighter than at the end of last season. With Seattle just missing an AL wild-card berth in 2016, Cruz is hopeful that the experience of competing late in the season, along with the flurry of offseason moves by general manager Jerry DiPoto, will be enough to propel the Mariners to the next level. "Now hopefully we can stay healthy. We should be in good shape. We should be at the top of the division."

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Albert Pujols
Angels' Albert Pujols: Progressing well, but won't play Saturday
Albert Pujols, DH, LAA
2/19/2017
News: Pujols (foot) said that he is progressing well, but he will certainly not be ready for the Angels' Cactus League debut and is still questionable for Opening Day, the Orange County Register reports.

Pujols -- who wasn't able to run last week -- said that he has been running on an Ultra G treadmill in an effort to reduce the impact on his lower body. He has also been swinging in the cages and reported no soreness afterwords. These are all promising signs after the slugger underwent foot surgery in December. The Angels will likely play it cautious with Pujols and we may not not see much -- if any -- of him in spring training games.

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Evan Gattis
Astros' Evan Gattis: Does some light throwing
Evan Gattis, DH, HOU
2/19/2017
News: Gattis (shoulder) got in some light throwing Sunday morning, Brian McTaggart of MLB.com reports.

Gattis' progress from his shoulder soreness is certainly a good sign, as it has prevented him from participating in baseball activities early in camp. There's still plenty of time for him to get caught up before the start of the regular season. When healthy, the 30-year-old slugger figures to see time as both the backup catcher behind Brian McCann and as the designated hitter, where Carlos Beltran also figures into the mix.

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Victor Martinez
Tigers' Victor Martinez: Ready to go, takes ground balls
Victor Martinez, DH, DET
2/18/2017
News: Martinez says he is ready to go and took ground balls at first base Saturday, Evan Woodbery of MLive.com reports.

It's positive news for the Tigers after Martinez underwent sports hernia surgery this offseason. The fielding drills are a great sign, but expect the veteran slugger to be eased back into normal baseball activities this spring. Martinez crushed 27 home runs last season, evidence he has not slowed down with age.

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Preston Tucker
Astros' Preston Tucker: Cleared for baseball activities
Preston Tucker, DH, HOU
2/16/2017
News: Tucker (shoulder) was medically cleared for baseball work earlier this month, Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle reports.

He's still recovering from September shoulder surgery. Tucker has been throwing for a couple of weeks and hit off a tee earlier this week. The club expects him to play spring games sometime in March. As long as the starting outfield is healthy, he'll likely to start the year at Triple-A Fresno. He posted a .164/.222/.328 line with four home runs and eight RBI in 134 at-bats with the Astros last season.

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Joey Gallo
Rangers' Joey Gallo: Likely headed to Triple-A
Joey Gallo, DH, TEX
2/16/2017
News: Gallo will have a chance this spring to join the Rangers' left field mix, but will most likely open the year at Triple-A, playing third base, first base and left field, the Dallas Morning News' Evan Grant reports.

The signing of Mike Napoli moves Jurickson Profar from first base to left field, and Ryan Rua is a natural platoon partner for Profar, so Gallo is likely ticketed for Round Rock. Everyone knows Gallo's strengths (elite raw power) and weaknesses (major swing and miss issues) at this point. If he can cut down on the strikeouts, either in spring training or at Triple-A, there should be opportunities for him to see at-bats against righties in the majors at some point this season. He suffered a strained hamstring in late October during winter ball, but the injury was only expected to require six weeks to recover, so he should be fully healthy.

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Carlos Santana
Indians' Carlos Santana: Position status up in air
Carlos Santana, DH, CLE
2/15/2017
News: Indians manager Terry Francona said he is not sure whether Santana or Edwin Encarnacion will be the primary first baseman for Cleveland this season, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports.

Santana played 64 games at first base and 92 as the designated hitter last season, but hit the same amount of home runs (17) at each position. The DH position could be a limiting fantasy value in some leagues, but Francona says he still needs to reassess the situation this spring and talk to the sluggers individually. Either way, both Santana and Encarnacion provide powerful offensive weapons within the Cleveland lineup and will likely receive equal playing time throughout the course of the season.

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Prince Fielder
Rangers' Prince Fielder: Placed on 60-day DL
Prince Fielder, DH, TEX
2/15/2017
News: Fielder (neck) was placed on the 60-day DL on Tuesday.

This was a procedural move removing Fielder from the 40-man roster. Fielder has already announced the end of his playing career after undergoing neck-fusion surgery last summer, but he will remain on the 40-man roster in the offseasons, likely through the end of his contract (2020).

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Byung Ho Park
Twins' Byungho Park: Outrighted to Triple-A
Byung Ho Park, DH, MIN
2/9/2017
News: Park (finger) cleared waivers and was sent outright to Triple-A Rochester on Thursday, LaVelle E. Neal of the Star Tribune reports.

Park was designated for assignment last week as the Twins made room for free agent signing Matt Belisle. The 30-year-old garnered some interest on waivers, but his .191 batting average in 215 at-bats last season, plus the $9 million he is still owed, ultimately deterred teams. He'll return to camp with the Twins in spring and compete for a spot on the big league team.

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