A lot of news and rumors around baseball today. Let's get to them.
- The owners and players have reached a verbal agreement on a new 5-year collective bargaining agreement three weeks ahead of schedule. Among the new inclusions are: "soft slotting" of draft picks and international free agents, where if a club goes over the allotted amount of money, they'll be taxed on it; fewer Type-A free agents, meaning it'll be tougher for players to truly earn that rating; penalties for clubs that don't spend enough on payroll; and of course, an extra wild card team in each league and a one-game playoff to determine the which club advances to the (real) postseason.
- Brian Cashman isn't confident that the Bros. Stein will OK another lucrative, long-term expenditure, specifically for Yu Darvish.
- I made my MVP predictions over at the YES Network.
- Bobby Valentine seems to be garnering serious consideration for the vacant Red Sox managerial job. Yes, please.
- Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes will probably be declared a free agent in early December. His price has gone up to an estimated $35-50M.
- The Blue Jays unveiled their new/old logos and uniforms today.
- Tom Verducci examined how Houston's move to the AL will affect the future of MLB.
- The Yankees added five minor leaguers to the 40-man roster: RHP David Phelps, RHP D.J. Mitchell, OF Zoilo Almonte, 2B Corban Joseph and 2B David Adams. Trenton Thunder's beat writer, Mike Ashmore, shared his thoughts.
- MVP candidate Matt Kemp and the Dodgers finalized his 8-year, $160 million extension, making it the richest in NL history.