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MLB Today: Dontrelle Willis Signs with Philly

December 16, 2011 | By RotoRob | comment on this post
Dontrelle Willis has been signed by the Philadelphia Phillies.
Dontrelle Willis brings his crazy-ass leg kick to Philly.

Lefty Dontrelle Willis has signed a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Phillies worth nearly $1 million. He’ll act as the left-handed specialist for a team that’s lacked one since releasing J.C. Romero in late-June. The D-Train joins a very young bullpen in Philly; really the only veterans are new closer Jonathan Papelbon and Jose Contreras, who started the season as the Phillies’ closer before suffering a couple of forearm injuries that cost him most of the season and ultimately required elbow surgery.

The Twins recently inked outfielder Josh Willingham to a three-year, $21 million deal and there’s talk that the Braves missed the boat on trying to land him. Atlanta has apparently been interested in him in the past, and it could have used his right-handed power bat to add to Dan Uggla’s. Instead, Atlanta will again entrust left field to a platoon of Martin Prado and Matt Diaz. Truth be told, power is always welcome, but the Braves need a high average, high on-base percentage player more than Willingham and his high homer, high-strikeout profile.

On June 12, when the Angels visit the Dodgers as part of beloved interleague play, the Dodgers will hand out bobbleheads depicting former great Mike Scioscia, who just happens to now be the manager of the Angels. The Dodgers will hand out bobbleheads of former great all season long, so there’s nothing unusual there, but choosing to give out Scioscia’s on the same day his club visits is a bizarre choice. What happens if the massively improved Halos hammer the Dodgers that game? Will Dodger fans make it rain with Scioscia bobbleheads? That could be an ugly scene and it could have – and should have — been avoided.

So Barry Bonds was finally sentenced Friday. The verdict? two years of probation and 30 days of house arrest. Yup, another slap on the wrist. Better yet, the sentence has been stayed pending an appeal, which will probably take a least a year, so even this cushy house arrest may not take place until at least 2013. The wheels of justice.

With MLB owners ratifying the new labour agreement (taking us through the 2016 season), we are assured of 21 straight seasons with no labour fights. Baseball set the pace for labour disputes, but that’s a pretty good run considering what happened in the NHL, and more recently, the NFL and NBA.

The Rockies signed Michael Cuddyer to a three-year, $30-million deal, massively upping his own Fantasy value, while probably smacking down Seth Smith’s value in one fell swoop.

It’s a good thing the Tigers signed reliever Octavio Dotel because youngster Al Albuquerque just had elbow surgery and will miss the first half of the 2012 season. Let’s hope Albuquerque isn’t becoming Joel Zumaya, Part Deux.

New Cubs Manager Dale Sveum has brought Chris Bosio along from the Milwaukee organization to be his new pitching coach. Man, now that’s one tough job. Like being Lady Gaga’s fashion consultant. Of course, Bosio’s job may be a it easier if the Cubs — who reportedly did bid — win the rights to sign Japanese standout Yu Darvish.

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