Arbitrator rules for Brees in franchise tag matter
NEW ORLEANS — Drew Brees gained additional leverage in his protracted contract talks with the New Orleans Saints on Tuesday when an arbitrator in Philadelphia ruled in Brees’ favor in a dispute over how much the Saints would have to pay the star quarterback if they applied the franchise tag to him again in 2013.
The Saints have already used the tag on Brees for 2012, meaning he can’t negotiate with another team and could be forced to settle for a one-year, $16.3 million deal if he cannot reach a new long-term deal by a July 16 deadline specified in the league’s collective bargaining agreement.
System arbitrator Stephen Burbank’s ruling Tuesday said if New Orleans tries to tag Brees a second year in a row, he would be entitled to a 44 percent raise to about $23.5 million because it would be his third-career franchise tag. The NFL had argued Brees would be due a 20 percent raise because it would have been only his second franchise tag with one team.
Burbank, however, ruled that while the NFL’s CBA has some ambiguity on the matter, it is clear that the overarching purpose of the language regarding multiple franchise tags is meant to protect players from being denied their rights to free agency for an undue length of their careers.
Cardinals’ Carpenter out for season with surgery
ST. LOUIS — St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter will undergo season-ending surgery to repair a nerve issue in his shoulder that has sidelined him since spring training.
The 37-year-old Carpenter wants to continue pitching. He’s been told the surgery to relieve compressed nerves in the shoulder could allow him to resume his career, although there are no guarantees. The procedure involves removing the first rib.
Carpenter said Tuesday that he’s dealt with the injury since 2008. He doesn’t believe his heavy workload last year for the World Series champions plays a significant role.
“We’ve tried since spring training to get this going, and every time I try to come back unfortunately it just doesn’t allow me to do that,” Carpenter said Tuesday before the Cardinals played the Rockies. “To be honest with you, I wish I thought about this surgery a while back.
“If we did it in March or April, I’d be close to coming back now.”
Until recently, the Cardinals had been optimistic Carpenter would respond to therapy and be able to pitch after the All-Star break. Carpenter was optimistic after meeting a specialist in Dallas last week, but strength did not return to the shoulder after a bullpen session on Friday.
Braves’ Chipper Jones added to NL All-Star roster
ATLANTA — Braves third baseman Chipper Jones on Tuesday was named to replace Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp on the NL All-Star roster.
Jones had been a candidate to be voted onto the team by fans in baseball’s Final Vote campaign. Instead, Jones, 40, is replacing Kemp, who is on the disabled list with a hamstring injury but plans to participate in the All-Star home run derby.
Jones said he immediately thought about his children when he was told by general manager Frank Wren of the honor after batting practice on Tuesday.
“I’m gonna be a kid in a candy store carrying four other kids in a candy store,” Jones said.
He said his spot on the All-Star team “was a complete surprise.”
The All-Star game will be played at Kansas City’s Kauffman Stadium. Jones said it is the only current stadium in the major leagues in which he has not played.
Jones will be making his eighth All-Star appearance in his final season. He has announced plans to retire after the season.
He is hitting .313 with six homers and 33 RBIs. He said he will tell NL manager Tony La Russa he would be happy just to watch if he is not needed in next Tuesday’s game.
Red Sox place Dice-K on DL, release Jenks
OAKLAND, Calif. — Red Sox starter Daisuke Matsuzaka is going to get more time for his recurring stiff neck to settle down and heal — manager Bobby Valentine hopes for good this time.
Dice-K was placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday, a day after the right-hander allowed five runs in one-plus inning and failed to retire a batter in the second inning of a 6-1 loss to the Oakland Athletics. The injury is along the trapezius muscle on the right side of his neck.
“Dice-K, that neck thing, we’re going to try to give it some more time and see if it goes away for good this time,” Valentine said. “It’s always serious when you have an injury, but it wasn’t so serious that he didn’t think he could pitch yesterday. It’s hard to lift up, it kind of grabs. Sometimes it loosens up.”
The pitcher is scheduled to resume rehab upon returning to Boston this week. Valentine wasn’t sure if he would need another injection to aid healing and calm down any inflammation.
In hindsight, Valentine said he might have pulled Matsuzaka sooner rather than having him start the second inning if he had known the neck was bothering him.
“That was my fault,” the skipper said. “I should have trusted what I was seeing.”
Boston recalled infielder Mauro Gomez from Triple-A Pawtucket for a second big league stint this season to fill Dice-K’s roster spot and give the Red Sox an extra bat as third baseman Will Middlebrooks nurses a hurt left hamstring. The DL remains a possibility if Middlebrooks doesn’t improve in the coming days.
Pirates demote Tabata, recall Hernandez
PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Pirates optioned outfielder Jose Tabata to Triple-A Indianapolis on Tuesday and recalled outfielder Gorkys Hernandez to take his place on the active roster.
Tabata has been a starter for the Pirates when healthy since his majors debut in June 2010. He signed a contract extension last August that will run through 2016 but struggled this season. Tabata was batting .230 with three home runs and 11 RBIs in 72 games.
Tabata also made some mental gaffes defensively and while baserunning, and manager Clint Hurdle hinted last month of a possible demotion. Tuesday, Hurdle said the team wanted to let Tabata play out of his slump in the minors.
Hernandez is in his second stint with the Pirates, having gone 2-for-10 with two RBIs in nine games from late May through early June.
Stars sign Jagr to $4.55 million, 1-year deal
DALLAS — Jaromir Jagr has a new NHL home.
The Dallas Stars signed the five-time scoring champion and former league MVP to a $4.55 million, one-year contract Tuesday.
Dallas general manager Joe Nieuwendyk said the 40-year-old Czech forward still has plenty to offer the franchise.
Jagr had 19 goals and 54 points — both career lows —to rank third among Flyers in scoring and had eight points in 11 playoff games. He played in 73 games during the regular season in his return to the NHL after playing in Russia for three years, helping a young team that had dramatically changed its roster with his veteran leadership and his talent.
By wire sources