MLB Scoreboard

Auto Update: On

Now

Arash Markazi ESPN Senior Writer 

Harold Baines and Lee Smith have been elected into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Coley Harvey ESPN Staff Writer 

In a session with Yankees reporters here in Las Vegas, Yankees GM Brian Cashman reiterated his top personnel concerns of the offseason: looking for starters and a way to address the loss of Didi Gregorius. BUT "At no time all winter have I said I'm looking for an outfielder. The (Bryce) Harper stuff ... I'm surprised you're still asking."

Charles Moynihan ESPN Producer 

Meet Harold Baines and Lee Smith, the newest members elected to the Hall of Fame.

Dan Mullen ESPN.com 

Raise your hand if you had the Tigers as the first team to add a pitcher at the winter meetings. Anyone? Detroit is making a mild bet on Tyson Ross picking up where he left off after a strong finish to 2018 with St. Louis.

Alden Gonzalez ESPN Staff Writer 

Nathan Eovaldi, on hand in Vegas to talk about his $68 million contract with the Red Sox, said "there were a lot of teams that reached out that wanted me to be a closer. A lot of teams wanted me to come out of the bullpen and others wanted me to do part time to save my arm." Eovaldi wanted to remain a starter.

Alden Gonzalez ESPN Staff Writer 

The Mariners announced Kaleb Cowart as an infielder and a pitcher. Looks like they're going to try him as a two-way player. Cowart was a really good pitcher in high school and has always had a big arm.

Alden Gonzalez ESPN Staff Writer 

Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto really has a knack for acquiring former players. Today, he claimed Kaleb Cowart off waivers from the Angels, the team that made him the 18th pick in 2010. Cowart has evolved into a switch-hitting utility guy who can play 3B, 1B, 2B and LF.

Alden Gonzalez ESPN Staff Writer 

Phillies manager Gabe Kapler was impressed with how Bryce Harper didn't seem to give away at-bats while he struggled. "I love the way he plays," Kapler said. "There's so much to like about what Bryce Harper brings to the table."

Alden Gonzalez ESPN Staff Writer 

New Rangers manager Chris Woodward will now have to face Shohei Ohtani often. He knew he could pitch, but didn't think he would become such a good hitter. "I wasn't convinced to start the year," Woodward said. "He proved me and a lot of people wrong."

David Schoenfield ESPN Senior Writer 

One of the more interesting things that new Rangers manager Chris Woodward said is that Jose Leclerc won't necessarily be locked into the closer role. He believes Leclerc is capable of pitching two or three innings at a time if needed and could be used in certain high-leverage situations as dictated and not just the ninth inning. Leclerc emerged as one of the game's most dominant relievers in 2018 with 85 K's in 57.2 innings with just one home run and a .126 average allowed.

Dan Mullen ESPN.com 

Phillies manager Gabe Kapler spoke glowingly about Bryce Harper when asked if he still thinks the free agent ranks among the very best players in the game: "Bryce Harper does a number of things well, but one of the things I found most fascinating about him last year was even through the times of his struggles, he still worked an incredible at-bat. So it wasn't like rolling over to the second baseman on the first pitch when he was struggling, although that happened from time to time. But when he struggled he still put together a quality at-bat. He still worked the pitcher. He still made the opposition uncomfortable. And sometimes he'd end that at-bat with a walk, which I think there's a lot of value in that. Now, when he's going good, he's one of the more difficult players to get out in the game. And I love the way he plays. I think there's so much to like about what Bryce Harper brings to the table. His play on the field and then also what he brings to a clubhouse environment."

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Phillies manager Gabe Kapler thinks he can be even more outspoken, as unlikely as that notion sounds, "I think I have demonstrated that I hold our players accountable behind closed doors. I think our fans would like to see me hold our players to that high bar publicly. I'm committed to doing that."

David Schoenfield ESPN Senior Writer 

The Royals churned through nine different center fielders in 2018, with nobody starting more than 31 games, so at the minimum Billy Hamilton should provide some stability to the position. He's unlikely to improve on the team's collective .246/.302/.357 batting line, but he'll provide plus defense and could become a potential trade chip as well in July.

Bradford Doolittle ESPN Staff Writer 

Don Mattingly echoes the thoughts of many who don't want baseball to codify a policy against defensive shifts: "I don't worry about the shift so much as finding guys who can use the whole field. You can use the whole field, they're not going to shift."