Had a fun week in Boston, but it's nice to be back somewhere that you can go outside without looking like you are re-enacting Shackleton's last voyage. We now return to your regularly-scheduled program of laughing at TV footage of people digging through snow. Here in Arizona, we get one more player signed for 2012, but otherwise the slow crawl toward spring training continues...
- [AZCentral] Arizona Diamondbacks, Brad Ziegler agree to 1-year deal - One down, three to go. A slight win for Ziegler, in that the $1.795m deal is closer to the $1.945m he wanted than the team's $1.46m offer.
- [FoxSportsArizona] D-backs break budget, go all in for 2012 - "It's a gamble, it's a risk. But it's one we were willing to take, because we, like a lot of our fans, were excited about the way we finished last year and want to build on it."
- [rgj.com] Diamondbacks: 'Humility' is byword for '12 - "Gibson is aware the club also pressed its luck, leading the majors with 48 come-from-behind wins. It's rare for a team to repeat that kind of performance, so he's looking for more efficient baserunning and defense, which he believes will help his pitchers by either adding to Arizona's scoring or limiting the opposition's."
- [dbacks.com] D-backs could have next great power duo - "D-backs outfielder Justin Upton and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, both of whom are just 24, should give Arizona one of the elite power duos in the game for years to come."
- [CBSSports.com] 2012 Fantasy outlooks: Arizona Diamondbacks - Interesting picks to "Bust" and as "Sleeper". Might not be too popular round here though.
- [tallahassee.com] Shooting for your hopes and dreams - Another great piece from prospect Bryan Henry, being very open about being a 12th-round pick. "I know it's fun to read about the million-dollar deals the top selections receive — and that's great for those guys — but I knew I didn't need a deposit slip ready when Luke arrived at my parent's home... He said, "Bryan, the Diamondbacks sent me here with one thousand dollars to get you signed.""
- [Joliet Herald News] Brandon Sing anticipating last ‘go-round’ - Also at the not-so glamorous end of pro-baseball, a player who'll get a shot at perhaps making a D-backs minor-league team this year.
- [MLB.com] 2012 Top 100 Prospects - MLB.com unveiled it's top prospects lists. Plenty of D-backs present - 5 in all, led by Trevor Bauer, with Archie Bradley and Tyler Skaggs in the top 21.
- [dbacks.com] D-backs trio among top 100 prospects Steve Gilbert takes a look at that trio in more detail.
- [MLB.com] Jonathan Mayo breaks down MLB.com's Top 100 Prospects list - "MLB.com's first Top 100 prospect list is now, as they said in "Mission: Impossible," out in the open. Now the fun is just beginning."
- [AZCentral] Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall is cancer free - Good, good news - Hall discusses life post-cancer.
- [Examiner.com] Astros ink LHP Zach Duke to minor league deal - Good luck, Zach. Unlike certain starters I could mention, you accepted the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune with good grace.
- [Yahoo!] Daryle Ward suspended 50 games for amphetamine The veteran hit .318 with two HR and 18 RBIs in 28 games with Double-A Mobile for us last year. Won't be doing that again...
- Tuesday night on MLB Network, their Baseball IQ game-show includes the D-backs representative, Josh DeFamio, so we'll be pulling for him. Random factoid: assuming it's the same guy, think he was running a comedy show at MADCAP in Tempe, the same day we had our horror film festival there in January 2010. Who knew? Anyway, he faces the Astros rep in the first round, should be 7:30pm.