Choo, Korea win Asian Games gold
Indians outfielder earns reprieve from military service
With a .571 batting average, three home runs, 11 RBIs, two stolen bases and five walks in the Asian Games, Shin-Soo Choo did everything in his power to help South Korea win a gold medal in the 2010 Asian Games and to earn a reprieve from military service.
"I am kind of dreaming right now," Choo told Korean sportswriter Hyun Chul Park of OSEN after the victory, the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported. "Honestly, if I didn't think about the military service, I might be lying. But it wasn't the primary reason to join the national team.
"I love baseball, and whenever I put the national flag on my shoulder, I am really proud of my nation and myself. That's why I want to play in this team."
Ackley named Arizona Fall League MVP: Second baseman Dustin Ackley was named Most Valuable Player of the Arizona Fall League. The Mariners prospect led the AFL in batting (.424), on-base percentage (.581), slugging (.758), OPS (1.338) and runs scored (28).
"That's an awesome feeling," Ackley told MLB.com of receiving the award before Saturday's championship game. "In April, I didn't think I could hit any more. As far as I've come, with hitting and defense, it's really special. I watched Grant Desme win it last year, the MVP, and he had put up great numbers during the season and in the Fall League. It's really special to take it in after him."
"I feel really good," said Ackley, who played for the Peoria Javelinas. "My body definitely has been feeling tired lately after a long season, but I feel really good where I'm at defensively and hitting-wise. I feel I've come a long way with second base, with double plays and ground balls. I think it was a big help to come out here."
Getz overcomes concussion symptoms: Second baseman Chris Getz has battled concussion syndrome but believes he's ready to compete for a job with the Royals.
"I was dealing with dizziness caused by rapid head movement along with any sort of busy environment, meaning crowded places," Getz told MLB.com. "I was actually having trouble going to a grocery store or a restaurant with a lot of people because there was so much brain stimulation. It was overwhelming -- I'd get dizzy, and it was just an exhausting experience."
Rodriguez hopes to lure Vazquez to Marlins: Manager Edwin Rodriguez has joined the effort to recruit fellow Puerto Rican Javy Vazquez to the Marlins.
"He's from my hometown in Ponce," Rodriguez told MLB.com. "I've known him well since he was 14, 15 years old. He's very confident about the whole situation. Hopefully, we can get him and put him in that rotation. If we have a chance to sign him, he's gonna be a great acquisition."
Matt Young highly regarded by Braves GM: Matt Young is a candidate for a utility role with the Braves.
"He can play everywhere," general manager Frank Wren told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution of Young. "He's a good baseball player. He's strong. He drives the ball. He can do a lot of things. We saw it in Spring Training -- every time we put him in there, he did something to help our club. And he's down in winter ball and is one of the best players in Mexico right now.
"You've got to give a guy credit who continues to work on his craft and just continues to do everything he can possibly do to get to the big leagues. I think if a lot more players took the approach he did, there'd be more guys in line to make big league teams."
Paulino looking forward to new start with Rockies: Felipe Paulino is looking forward to pitching in the Rockies' system.
"Now it's a time for me to work harder than ever," the former Astros hurler told the The Denver Post. "I'm pretty confident with this decision, I have a lot of things to thank the Astros for, they have been with me throughout my career, but now I'm in a new organization. Baseball is a business and these things tend to happen, they happen for a reason and that's why I have to accept it wholeheartedly."
Paulino is also looking forward to playing with his new teammates.
"I like my new team a lot, they've had exceptional seasons in the past few years, and I've been told they are excellent with their young and experienced players and it's an organization full of respect and they are professional all along the way," he said. "Now it's a turn for me to start over, and I have to prepare myself in the best way I can so I can adapt myself to this new challenge."
Weeks could get contract extension: The Brewers have resumed talks with Rickie Weeks on a multi-year contract extension.
"We still want to talk about it," general manager Doug Melvin told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "It's something we're interested in doing."
Weeks played in 160 games and hit .269 with 29 home runs and 83 RBIs as the team's leadoff hitter in 2010. He was also hit by a pitch 25 times and scored 112 runs.
Hoffpauir to play for Ham Fighters: Unsure of his future in Chicago, Micah Hoffpauir has moved on to Japan to play for the Nippon Ham Fighters.
After discussing things with former Cub Matt Murton, who made the same move a year ago, Hoffpauir determined moving to Japan was the right decision for himself, his wife, Tiffany, and daughter, Addyson.
"It's funny because he was in the same situation I was in and he said, 'From my experience, it's a no-brainer,'" Hoffpauir told MLB.com. "Everybody I've talked to has said, 'You'll have a good time and you'll absolutely love it.'"
Duke thankful for time in Pittsburgh: Zach Duke has been released by the Pirates.
After spending his entire career in Pittsburgh, Zach Duke is no longer a Pirate after he was designated for assignment. As he looks to a new chapter in his career, Duke has only positive things to say about his time in Pittsburgh.
"I am truly thankful for the opportunity the Pirates have given me and genuinely enjoyed my time in Pittsburgh," Duke said in a statement reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "I understand this business decision and wish the Pirates and my friends still on the team the best of luck in the future."
Alburquerque to get shot in Tigers' bullpen: In an effort to strengthen their bullpen, the Tigers have signed Dominican prospect Alberto Alburquerque.
"We are pleased to add a quality arm to the organization like Alberto Alburquerque," Tigers general manager David Dombrowski said in a statement reported by the Detroit Free Press. "He has pitched well in winter ball in the Dominican Republic and, based upon our reports, we feel he will compete for a spot in our bullpen."
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.