The pursuit of free agent outfielder Yasmany Tomas took a quick and stunning turn on Wednesday. Expected to become the richest Cuban defector to date, with a $100 million contract seemingly within reason, Tomas agreed on a six-year, $68 million contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks, according to a report from MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez. Though he’ll earn a higher yearly average, Tomas’ deal falls short of Rusney Castillo‘s seven-year, $72.5 million deal with the Boston Red Sox, which ultimately topped deals signed by Yasiel Puig, Yoenis Cespedes and Jose Abreu. Castillo’s deal was viewed by many as a starting point for Tomas in terms of total money, but apparently the market didn’t develop as envisioned. In the other surprising twist, Arizona was only viewed as a periphery player at best in the Tomas sweepstakes as recently as Wednesday afternoon. New D-Backs general manager Dave Stewart discussed his interest with Zach Buchanan of the Arizona Republic earlier in the day, stating that no formal offer had been issued,  though both sides understood what the other was looking for.  Stewart isn’t sure how competitive the Dbacks are in this derby, though. Said he’s unaware of what other offers are. — Zach Buchanan (@azc_zachb) November 26, 2014 How quickly things change. Though all 30 teams have expressed varying degrees of interest and were present at at least one of his workouts, the Philadelphia Phillies, San Diego Padres and San Francisco Giants were the teams most often linked to Tomas. With San Francisco losing Pablo Sandoval this week, they were expected to ramp up efforts to sign the 24-year-old third baseman and outfielder , but instead he ends up with their division rivals from Arizona. While it hasn’t been a great week at the office for Giants general manager Brian Sabean, the Tomas signing solidifies a nice start to the Dave Stewart and Tony La Russa regime in Arizona, which began with a trade to acquire right-hander Jeremy Hellickson from Tampa Bay. In Tomas, they get a young player with position flexibility and exciting raw power that should continue to develop and play very well at Chase Field. Tomas is a potential cornerstone whose prime seasons will be locked up at a surprisingly affordable price. Here’s more on Tomas from Baseball America: Tomas is a big-boned, heavy-framed player, but he moves around surprisingly well for his size, with slightly below-average speed. While he will have to keep his weight in check, Tomas should profile in either corner outfield spot, with a plus arm to play right field. Since Tomas is 24 and played five seasons in Cuba for Industriales of Serie Nacional, he is exempt from the international bonus pools. He was a standout at the 2013 World Baseball Classic, and he excelled in Cuba that season by hitting .289/.364/.538 with 15 home runs, 34 walks and 52 strikeouts in 324 plate appearances. During the 2013-14 season (his last one in Cuba), Tomas had a down year, hitting .290/.346/.450 in 257 plate appearances with six home runs, 21 walks and 46 strikeouts in 257 trips to the plate. For a team that wants to win right away, but still has some rebuilding that needs to be done, Tomas is essentially the perfect fit. He’s young, he should be ready to make a quick impact, and he can be built around without his contract hampering the payroll too much. On day one, this looks like a winner for Stewart, but the next 2,190 days will tell us a lot more.  More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: – - – - – - – Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Townie813

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 26th, 2014
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Seager’s seven-year deal will mark the third consecutive offseason in which Seattle has signed a player to a nine-figure contract.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 26th, 2014
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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 25th, 2014
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By reportedly agreeing to splashy deals with Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval, Boston flexes the financial muscle most teams don’t possess.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 25th, 2014
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Here’s something you don’t expect to hear about the Philadelphia Phillies: There was an infusion of youth in their clubhouse. But we’re not talking about baseball players, rather patients from Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia who attended a special sleepover inside the home team’s clubhouse at Citizens Bank Ballpark. The clubhouse sleepover — a first of its kind for the Phillies — was sold as part of the team’s Phantastic Auction in May . The winner of the auction then anonymously donated it to the local children’s hospital, so four patients and their families had the awesome experience of spending the night where Chase Utley and Cole Hamels get ready for ballgames. Among them, according to WPVI-TV in Philly , was  4-year-old Grayson who just finished 18 months of chemotherapy and 10-year-old Brooke who’s fighting cancer for the second time.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 24th, 2014
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The Braves are re-evaluating their place in the NL East, while the Cardinals are focused on winning it all.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 17th, 2014
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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 15th, 2014
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PITTSBURGH (AP) — A.J. Burnett believes his right arm has one – and only one – season left in it. The pitcher has no intentions of letting it go to waste.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 14th, 2014
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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Former Gold Glove outfielder Jeff Francoeur has agreed to a minor league contract with the Philadelphia Phillies.

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 13th, 2014
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The Detroit Tigers broke the bank again on Wednesday, re-signing free agent Victor Martinez to a four-year, $68 million deal . The new contract will keep Martinez around through the 2018 season. Of course, that will also be Martinez’s age 39 season, which already has people pointing out how they’ve “overpaid” and “over committed” on a deal that will almost assuredly end badly. Here’s the thing: While we’re sure they appreciate everyone’s concern, they honestly don’t care how this contract looks in 2018 or how their other big commitments look in years beyond 2018. Right now, Detroit has $168 million committed to Justin Verlander until 2019, plus a $22 million vesting option for 2020. They also have $262 million committed to Miguel Cabrera until 2023, plus two vesting options valued at $30 million each. With Martinez’s deal included, that’s $488 million guaranteed to three players, and the potential for a lot of dead money down the road. Of course, if the Verlander and Cabrera options did vest, that would mean they’ve managed to hold their value until the end. Both are contingent on finishing high in MVP and Cy Young voting in their final guaranteed seasons. It’s unlikely, but again, it’s far enough down the road that it doesn’t factor into Detroit’s current mindset. For the Tigers, the future remains the present. They have a major league roster that’s built to contend in 2015, and until that roster begins showing cracks, owner Mike Ilitch, who turned 85 in July, and general manager Dave Dombrowski will continue focusing on maximizing their chances to win a World Series on a year-by-year basis. Shelling out yet another big money contract to secure the present is all they’re looking to do. It’s an approach that can blow up quickly, as we’ve seen recently with the Philadelphia Phillies. But if it pays off with a World Series championship, it’ll be worth it in Detroit. The Martinez deal should be worth it, too, at least in the context of their short term goal. In 2014, the 35-year-old posted the most productive season of his 12-year MLB career. Martinez set career highs in home runs 32, hits 188, batting average .335, finishing second only to Jose Altuve (.341), and total bases 317. He essentially replaced the run production one would expect from Prince Fielder, who was traded last winter, while hitting for a higher average and striking out far less (only 42 times).  It was an MVP caliber season, which is why he’s a finalist along with Mike Trout and Michael Brantley. And though he’s relegated almost exclusively to designated hitter duties after suffering a torn ACL in his left knee back in 2012, he’s still an impact bat. Impact bats don’t grow on trees. One thing this contract almost assuredly guarantees is that Max Scherzer won’t be back in Detroit next season. Dombrowski got ahead of that likelihood by acquiring David Price at the trade deadline. Price has one year left on his current deal, which adds more urgency to 2015.  At this point, it’s 2015 or bust. Adding Martinez is a good start. Rebuilding the bullpen, however, remains Dombrowski’s biggest challenge, and could perhaps be their ultimate downfall. If they fall short again, they’ll access the roster again. Assuming no cracks in the foundation develop — namely, Cabrera and Verlander — changes are we’ll be back here next season talking about 2016 or bust for Detroit.  More MLB coverage from Yahoo Sports: – - – - – - – Mark Townsend is a writer for Big League Stew on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at bigleaguestew@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Townie813

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Post info: By PhillyFanatic on November 13th, 2014
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