Posey, Pence, Ellsbury among 81 to strike deals

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Posey, Pence, Ellsbury among 81 to strike deals

NEW YORK (AP) NL MVP Buster Posey agreed to an $8 million, one-year contract with the San Francisco Giants, teammate Hunter Pence got a $13.8 million deal and Jacoby Ellsbury settled with the Boston Red Sox for $9 million on a busy Friday as players and teams swapped figures in salary arbitration.

Eighty-one players reached agreements, leaving just 36 headed toward hearings next month in Phoenix from among the 133 who filed for arbitration Tuesday. Most of the cases are expected to settle.

San Diego third baseman Chase Headley had the largest request and the biggest spread, asking for $10.3 million while the Padres offered $7,075,000.

Boston reliever Craig Breslow had the slimmest gap. He sought $2,375,000 - that was $50,000 more than the Red Sox offered.

Teams won five of seven cases decided by three-arbitrator panels last winter, their 14th winning record in 16 years. Overall, owners lead 291-214 since arbitration began in 1974.

Posey was eligible for arbitration for the first time after hitting a National League-leading .336 with 24 homers and 103 RBIs and helping the Giants win their second World Series title in three seasons. Posey, who made $615,000 last year, cannot become a free agent until after the 2016 World Series.

Obtained by San Francisco from Philadelphia on July 31, Pence can become a free agent this fall, as can Ellsbury.

Among those left in arbitration, Cincinnati has a major league-high six players remaining. Outfielder Shin-Soo Choo, acquired from Cleveland last month, asked for a raise from $4.9 million to $8 million, while the Reds offered $6.75 million. Right-hander Homer Bailey asked to be increased from $2.5 million to $5.8 million and was offered $4.75 million.

Mat Latos, eligible for arbitration for the first time, asked for a raise from $550,000 to $4.7 million after going 14-4 in his first season with the Reds. Cincinnati offered $4.15 million. The other Reds still in arbitration are pitchers Mike Leake and Alfredo Simon and outfielder Chris Heisey.

Two interesting settlements involved Los Angeles Angels pitcher Jason Vargas ($8.5 million) and Seattle Mariners first baseman-designated hitter Kendrys Morales ($5.25 million), who were swapped for each other last month.

Also reaching agreements were Baltimore catcher Matt Wieters ($5.5 million), Milwaukee closer John Axford ($5 million) and Atlanta outfielder Jason Heyward ($3.65 million).

Only two players got multiyear deals Friday. Toronto catcher Josh Thole, acquired from the New York Mets in the R.A. Dickey trade, got a $2.5 million, two-year contract, and Washington reliever Craig Stammen agreed to a $2,225,000, two-year deal.

The high-spending Los Angeles Dodgers settled with catcher A.J. Ellis ($2 million) and right-hander Ronald Belisario ($1.45 million). That raised the Dodgers' projected payroll to $214.2 million after an adjustment for cash received this year as part of last summer's trade with the Boston Red Sox for Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford and Josh Beckett.

Five players settled after the exchange of figures, with Boston and reliever Alfredo Aceves agreeing to a deal at the $2.65 million midpoint. Posey, Vargas, Washington reliever Tyler Clippard ($4 million) and Detroit reliever Phil Coke ($1.85 million) submitted the same figures as their teams, an indication they reached agreement shortly before the exchange and didn't finalize them until after the swap.

Machado named American League Player of the Month

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Machado named American League Player of the Month

BALTIMORE --- Manny Machado has been named the American League’s Player of the Month for April. 

Machado, who began the season with a career high 16-game hitting streak, batted .344 in April with seven home runs and 16 RBIs. Machado also had 10 doubles in 23 games. 

He also had 11 multi-hit games, and did not commit an error until the final game of the month. 

Machado helped lead the Orioles to a franchise best 7-0 start. 

It’s Machado’s first Player of the Month award. He was named Player of the Week twice, after his first week in the major leagues in Aug. 2012 and in June 2015.

RELATED: HARDY HEADED TO THE DISABLED LIST WITH FOOT INJURY

Hardy headed to the disabled list with foot injury

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Hardy headed to the disabled list with foot injury

BALTIMORE—J.J. Hardy will be out an estimated four to six weeks with a small fracture in his left foot according to an industry source. The Orioles shortstop suffered the fracture in the fourth inning of Sunday’s game when he fouled a ball off his foot. 

Hardy underwent a CT scan on Monday. 

RELATED: Kim's improved play winning over Showalter

As Hardy goes to the disabled list, the Orioles are planning to recall infielder Ryan Flaherty from Triple-A Norfolk. Flaherty was sent down to the Tides a week ago when the Orioles temporarily decided to go with 13 pitchers. 

For the last week, the Orioles have been playing without an extra infielder, and it’s known that manager Buck Showalter would like to have a four-man bench. 

Paul Janish could also be added to the 40-man roster, but he’s planning to go on paternity leave Wednesday. 

With Hardy out, Manny Machado could play shortstop and Flaherty or Pedro Alvarez could play third base. Chris Davis has also played third. 

If the Orioles would like to keep Machado at third, then Janish could play short when he returns from paternity leave. 

Zach Britton, who was scheduled to undergo an MRI on his left ankle Monday afternoon, is feeling much better, and is expected to avoid the disabled list. He could pitch in the series against the New York Yankees that begins Tuesday. 

Britton injured the ankle on Saturday night.

The organization’s top pitching prospect, Hunter Harvey, will undergo sports hernia surgery this week in Philadelphia. An examination determined that was the source of the groin injury that was bothering him this spring.

Harvey is expected to miss four to six weeks. 

Hardy leaves early, Jimenez doesn't get out of fifth in 7-1 loss

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Hardy leaves early, Jimenez doesn't get out of fifth in 7-1 loss

BALTIMORE— In the past two days, the Orioles may have suffered disabling injuries to two key players. On Saturday, Zach Britton left the game with a sprained left ankle, and Sunday, J.J. Hardy was forced out when he fouled a ball on his left foot, bruising it. 

Britton was optimistic that he would be able to avoid the disabled list, but Hardy who left the ballpark during game, could be a different story. 

Both are scheduled for MRIs on Monday. 

The injuries worsened a depressing day for the Orioles, who left 12 men on base in a 7-1 loss to the Chicago White Sox before 28,803 at Oriole Park. 

Ubaldo Jimenez allowed six runs, five of them in the fifth inning as the Orioles fell behind 6-0. Jimenez walked four, hit two batters and threw a wild pitch, but after the game, it was Hardy everyone wanted to talk about. 

“It’s going to be hard. It’s going to be hard, because he’s one of those guys that’s going to do everything possible in his hands to get an out. He never gives up. It doesn’t matter where the ball is, he’s going to go after it and try to get you out of the inning. It’s hard, but we have a team. That’s what a team is for. You have to find a way for one for the guys to step up and keep doing what he was doing and hopefully he’s not out for a long time,” Jimenez said. 

Hardy was injured during a fourth inning at-bat when he drew a walk. In the top of the fourth, he amazed his teammates by catching a ball that had ricocheted off Manny Machado’s glove at third base and firing it to first to catch Todd Frazier. 

“That’s unbelievable. Just to be here to watch that play. I don’t know if there will be a better play made the whole year,” manager Buck Showalter said. 

Showalter much preferred talking about the play than the possibility his team would have to do without Hardy, who played the first 22 games at shortstop without an error. 

“I’ve got an idea. Right now it’s a contusion. He fouled a ball off his foot and it got real stiff and sore quickly. And so he’s going to get some more detail. I think it’s a scan tomorrow to see the extent of it,” Showalter said. 

The Orioles hope to know Monday afternoon what Hardy’s prognosis will be. If Hardy goes to the DL, it’s likely Ryan Flaherty, who was sent to Norfolk last Monday because the team temporarily wanted to keep 13 pitchers, will return.

Currently, the Orioles have Yovani Gallardo and Jimmy Paredes on the disabled list. They don’t want that number to double.

“We knew it wasn't a matter of if, it was when. You hope it's if. Some teams get real lucky in a year. But it's nothing we can't overcome, and nothing guys won't be back from at some point,” Showalter said. 

Adam Jones, who missed time last month with a rib cage injury, thinks the Orioles won’t be terribly hurt. 

“Everybody’s going through the same thing. It’s unfortunate, but everybody has to go through it and it’s a true test of what a team is all about,” Jones said. 

“It’s part of the game. It’s part of the grind. Things happen.”

In the fourth, The White Sox (18-8) took a 1-0 lead on Brett Lawrie’s fourth home run, three of them hit in the past three games.

Jimenez (1-3) pitched out of trouble in the second inning when he loaded the bases on a single and two walks with none out. He struck out Dioner Navarro and got Austin Jackson to hit into a double play. 

In the fifth, Chicago took a 6-0 lead on five hits, a walk and two hit batsmen. Jerry Sands’ two-run single was the biggest hit and Jimenez’s final batter. 

Chris Sale (6-0) continued his dominance, but for the first time he didn’t make it through seven innings. He didn’t even get through six. 

Sale allowed five hits and walked four in 5 1/3, but only one runner scored.

Chris Davis singled to lead off the sixth, and after Pedro Alvarez bounced out, Jake Petricka gave up a single to Nolan Reimold to score Davis. 

Alvarez came into the game to play third base when Hardy left after five innings. Machado moved to shortstop. 

Monday is a day off, and the New York Yankees arrive Tuesday for a three-game series. The Orioles (14-10) had a good first four weeks of the season.

“It’s been cold a lot of places. We’ve had a lot of fun. I just think when it heats up, we’re going to have a lot more fun,” Jones said.

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