Sunday, January 23, 2011

Butler, Royals agree to four-year extension

The Kansas City Royals and first baseman Billy Butler have agreed yesterday to a four-year extension worth $30 million with a club option for a fifth season (2015), per Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star.

With the extension, the Royals avoided arbitration with Butler and keep him from becoming a free agent after the 2013 season.

“It’s personable here, man,” Butler said. “You can’t go anywhere and have fans (act) like the fans here. They love the Royals.”

Butler, who is only 24 years old, has hit over .300 in each of his past two seasons. Although he has only 36 home runs in 1203 at bats over those two seasons, he has 96 doubles during the same span.

“We have a lot of young players that you’re going to start seeing this year,” he said. “You don’t get ranked the No. 1 minor-league system for nothing.”

That said, Bodog has the Royals in their typical spot as the biggest underdog (tied with the Pirates) to win the 2011 World Series at 150-1.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Gordon Beckham to bat second

The White Sox will bat Gordon Beckham second in their lineup to start the season, per Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.

Beckham, who was the eighth overall pick in 2008, struggled mightily in the first half of 2010.

Before the All-Star break, Beckham hit only .216 and three home runs in 273 at bats. His batting average in the first three months: .235, .159 and .233.

After the break, however, Beckham hit .310 with six home runs in 171 at bats.

In early mock drafts, Beckham is the 16th second baseman and 200th player selected, according to Mock Draft Central.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

CarGo, Rockies agree to seven-year, $80 million extension

The Colorado Rockies are about to sign outfielder Carlos Gonzalez to an extension for seven years and $80 million, provided he passes a physical on Thursday.

"It's not at all finalized. But everything is practically concluded. All that's left are the physical evaluations," Gonzalez told Meridiano Television in Venezuela.

Last year, CarGo won a Gold Glove and the N.L. batting title (.344) while hitting 34 home runs while driving in 117 runs.

Gonzalez has been part of two large trades: (1) went to Oakland in deal for Dan Haren to Arizona and (2) went to Colorado with Huston Street and Greg Smith for Matt Holliday.