Federal authorities have opened a wide-ranging investigation into the Miami Marlins’ controversial ballpark deal with Miami-Dade County and the city of Miami, demanding financial information underpinning nearly $500 million in bond sales as well as records of campaign contributions from the Marlins to local and state elected leaders. In a pair of lengthy letters delivered to government attorneys Thursday, the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission gave the city and county until Jan. 6 to deliver everything from minutes of meetings between government leaders and Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria and Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig, to records of Marlins finances dating back to 2007. http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/12/02/v-fullstory/2529191/feds-open-sec-probe-into-miami.html#ixzz1fRS2KcYH
A growing controversy over a new baseball team name and logo in London, Ont. — a menacing-looking man wearing a Victorian top hat carrying a baseball bat — is gathering international attention. Columnists at USA Today, broadcasters at NBC Sports and right wing commentator Rush Limbaugh are all weighing in on the logo’s resemblance to Jack the Ripper. The new baseball team, part of the Frontier League, is to be called the London Rippers. The team’s logo is supposed to depict “Diamond Jack,” a frustrated hockey player who has the ability to “rip” the covers off baseballs and has a mysterious back story.
Allen Wilson, an award-winning sportswriter and columnist for The Buffalo News, died today after a battle with leukemia at Roswell Park Cancer Institute. He was 49. Wilson worked for The News for the past 20 years and was a Buffalo Bills beat reporter since 1999. He was widely respected among journalists and by the teams he covered for his astute knowledge of sports and for his commitment to fairness and accuracy. He was honored five times in the past decade alone by the New York State Associated Press Association for both sports reporting and column writing. He won the AP's distinguished sports reporting award in 2007 for a two-part series he wrote on former prep basketball star Ritchie Campbell. http://www.buffalonews.com/deaths/local-obituaries/article654586.ece
Domonic Brown, OF, Philadelphia Phillies - At times Brown has been considered among the top outfield prospects in the game, but the Phillies have done him no favors by jerking him around at the major-league level and going against the general thought that you don't bring up a top prospect unless you can give him consistent playing time. Brown has stagnated since a poor showing in 2010, and while the Phillies seem to have lost confidence in him, plenty of teams would like to show him some. http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=15614Terry Francona is swapping jobs with Bobby Valentine. In another winter meetings trade, ESPN said Monday that Francona will become an analyst for its Sunday night game telecasts next season, joining Dan Shulman and Orel Hershiser in the broadcast booth. Valentine worked for ESPN in 2003 and rejoined the network in September 2009. He broadcast Sunday night games this year, then was hired last week as manager of the Boston Red Sox, who parted ways with Francona after the season. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/baseball/mlb/12/05/francona.espn.ap/index.html#ixzz1fm7IB1ej