Can Baseball take advantage of Football?

Earlier this past week, San Francisco 49ers linebacker Chris Borland made waves in the sports world when he announced that he was retiring from the NFL. No big deal. Players retire all the time, you’re probably telling yourself. Except that Borland was 24 years old and led the 49ers defense in tackles last season as a rookie. He threw in a sack and a couple interceptions too.

Borland would go on to tell ESPN’s Outside the Lines that his goal in retiring was to protect himself against the risks of future brain injury as a result of playing football. Many have made an attempt to dismiss Borland and minimize the gravity of the decision he made. Yes, another player will stand up to take his place. Yes, people will continue to play football. Time will tell whether he is an outlier or the tip of an iceberg.

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Will Jon Jay’s wrist open up the door for Tommy Pham?

Last spring I tweeted using the #SpringTrainingOverreactions hashtag a few times on Twitter and perhaps this article should be filed under that category too. For us fans who have had nothing to discuss all winter, except hypertheticals, it’s time to jump in and overreact based on statistics from a week of meaningless games. But why should we let that stop us. No!

Center field has been the target of a lot of discussion this winter. Rebounding from a dismal 2013 season, Jon Jay reclaimed what had been his by providing the Cardinals a quality offensive season and a plus defensive season. After a long contract negotiation, Jay finally agreed to terms on a new two year deal that bought out his two remaining arbitration years, but what exactly we’ll get from Jay this year is open for debate, and has been the subject of much of it.

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Cardinals avoid arbitration with two year deal for Jay

The St. Louis Cardinals and Jon Jay have avoided arbitration, the team announced this afternoon. The 30-year-old center fielder agreed to terms on a 2 year deal worth $10.975 million. The deal includes a $1.25 million signing bonus, $3.5 million salary for 2015 and $6.225 million salary for 2016. The total value was originally reported by Derrick Goold.

Jay and the team had been nearing an arbitration hearing, which would have been the first by the Cardinals since 1999. However, the streak has been kept alive.

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Cardinals add RHP Carlos Villanueva for flexibility

The Cardinals announced that they signed a minor league deal with right handed pitcher Carlos Villanueva yesterday. The former Cub looks to add versatility to the Cardinals’ options in this year’s flier signing.

Villanueva, 31, played for the Cubs in each of the past two seasons and was solid in relief for them both seasons. He posted a 3.03 ERA in 39 innings of relief in 2013 and then followed that up with a 2.64 ERA in 58 innings of relief in 2014, striking out 8.8 batters per 9 innings both years. He wrapped up the 2014 season with a 1.69 ERA in 27 innings after the All Star Break.

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Cardinals acquire catcher Michael Ohlman from Baltimore

The Cardinals announced today that they have acquired catcher Michael Ohlman from the Baltimore Orioles for cold, hard cash. Ohlman was DFA’d by the Orioles after they acquired Travis Snider last week.

An 11th round pick whose whose future looked bright after a stellar 2013 where he won the Carolina League batting title. His slash line was .313/.410/.524 with 13 homers. Except this past season he was promoted to Double-A where he hit a wall, hitting just .236 with 2 homers.

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