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A New Year, A New Ronny Applesauce: Mets Close To Signing Another Ronny From Pittsburgh, Also Bringing Back Scott Hairston, More CRG Reaction

Meet the Mets

The Mets' bench for 2012 is beginning to come together, as the team is rumored to be nearing agreements with a pair of players. Former Cubs/Pirates shortstop Ronny Cedeno is rumored to be closing in on a one year, $1.15 million deal to back up Ruben Tejada and Daniel Murphy. Cedeno isn't much of a hitter (career 68 OPS+, 76 OPS+ in 2011) but the soon to be 29 year old is known for a solid glove and the numbers seem to back that up, as he's been just a tick below average, with a -1.6 UZR/150 in 4500 innings at the position.

The other bench piece nearing a deal with the team is a familiar face. Scott Hairston looks like he'll spend a second year as the Mets' resident lefty masher off the bench. With these two signings, it'll be interesting to see A) who the front office knocks off the 40-man roster in the coming days and B) who will ultimately be on the bench come Opening Day. With Hairston, Cedeno and a backup catcher (Nickeas?) as locks and Justin Turner probably another near lock (barring a trade), that should leave one more spot which would probably go to another outfielder. I'm not sure who that would be, but it looks like it won't be Willie Harris. Willie seems like a good guy but let's just say I'm not exactly disappointed over here.

The hiring of CRG Partners was, not surprisingly, a big story on Friday, as there was plenty of reaction to the news that Amazin' Avenue's own Eno Sarris broke on Thursday evening. The team took to Twitter to reiterate that despite CRG's connection to the Texas Rangers' bankruptcy in 2010, the consulting group was hired by the Mets only to "review and analyze financial statements, projections, budgets and forecasts." Further, the team's beat writers echoed positivity regarding the current ownership's uncertain future.

Around the Majors

Chicago police are investigating claims that Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro sexually assaulted a woman. Charges have not been filed yet but according to the accusations, which have been denied by Castro's representatives, the assault was said to have occurred in September. Yeesh. Meanwhile, the Tigers' Miguel Cabrera avoided jail time by pleading no contest to the charges of DUI in Florida last year.

There was a trade made on Friday, as the Cubs acquired first baseman Anthony Rizzo from the Padres, along with minor league pitcher Zach Cates, in exchange for pitcher Andrew Cashner and minor league outfielder Kyung-Min Na. Rizzo, a top prospect who was a key part of the Padres' return in last year's Adrian Gonzalez trade, became expendable when the Pads acquired Yonder Alonso last month. It looks like the acquisition of Rizzo will effectively remove the Cubs from the Prince Fielder chase.

Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan is taking a leave of absence from the team to be with his wife as she recovers from brain surgery and will be replaced by Derek Lilliquist. Best wishes to the Duncan family for a quick recovery.

The Angels signed infielder Jorge Cantu to a minor league deal. His career has completely fallen off the map over the past two seasons but I still hate that guy from his Marlins' days.

New Marlins' pitcher Mark Buehrle, a dog lover and owner of four dogs, is not able to live anywhere near the Marlins' new stadium because Miami-Dade County apparently has a ban on pitbulls. It's a shame that the county doesn't have a ban on this Pitbull.

Want to support the infamous "mystery team"? Now you can buy their apparel! Alternatively, this team could probably be called the "Nick Evans All-Stars" but come to think of it, I don't even know who that is. Oh well.