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Some things to read while finding your seat. (h/t Pocket Doppler)

The news is a couple of days old now, but we have a new Brewer to discuss: The team signed outfielder Brandon Boggs to a major league deal on Wednesday (FanShot). Boggs has only appeared in 13 games as a Ranger over the last two seasons, but hit .290/.406/.470 for AAA Oklahoma City in 2010. He'll turn 28 in January and can play all three outfield spots.

Signing Boggs means the Brewers will have a pretty interesting competition in the outfield when they report to Maryvale in February: Ryan Braun and Corey Hart are locks to make the team, of course, but after that the team will have Lorenzo Cain, Carlos Gomez, Boggs, Chris Dickerson and perhaps Joe Inglett battling for three spots. Jaymes Langrehr of The Brewers Bar says that this signing isn't the end of the road for Carlos Gomez, but it does increase the odds he'll start 2011 in AAA. Cain, Gomez and Dickerson all have options remaining, but Boggs does not.

The organization waited until the last minute to do it, but did eventually decide to offer arbitration to Type B free agent Trevor Hoffman, who reportedly agreed to decline the offer (FanShot). Offering Hoffman arbitration means the Brewers will receive draft pick compensation if he signs a major league deal with another team this offseason. Aaron Gleeman of Hardball Talk thinks baseball should do something about "gentleman's agreements" like this, which allow teams to game the system with no real repercussions.

Now that the Brewers have positioned themselves to profit from it, we'll have to sit back and hope Trevor Hoffman finds a new home this offseason. Gaslamp Ball has a somewhat innovative idea for his potential return to San Diego.

Elsewhere in free agency: I don't know if this would change the Brewers' level of interest or not, but Javier Vazquez is reportedly seeking a one year deal, and has turned down multi-year offers.

Here's today's Prince Fielder update: Tom Haudricourt noted that Paul White of USA Today said the market for Fielder has been pretty slow and doesn't expect the slugger to move until after Opening Day, at the earliest.

In the minors:

Bernie's Crew named Wisconsin outfielder Khris Davis their minor league player of the year.

I mentioned it earlier this week, but in case you've forgotten I'll mention it again: Bob Uecker is scheduled to appear on Studio 42 with Bob Costas tonight on MLB Network. I've got my DVR set, and yours should be too.

Earlier this week I mentioned that LaTroy Hawkins and his family distributed turkeys to families in Gary, Indiana. It's worth nothing that he wasn't the only Brewer helping out in the community this week: Bullpen catcher Marcus Hanel helped out local kids with a coat drive. The Brewers Charity Foundation also announced that they raised over $3 million for local organizations in 2010.

Around baseball:

Astros: Removed relievers Tim Byrdak and Gustavo Chacin from their 40 man roster, making both free agents, and signed catcher Carlos Corporan to a minor league deal.
Diamondbacks: Acquired pitcher Zach Duke from the Pirates for a PTBNL.
Dodgers: Signed reliever Oscar Villareal to a minor league deal.
Mariners: Signed pitchers Charlie Haegar, Chris Smith, Yusmeiro Petit, Chris Seddon and outfielder Mike Wilson to minor league deals.
Red Sox: Claimed outfielder Jordan Parraz off waivers from the Royals.

Meanwhile, here's another transaction on the horizon: Japan's Chiba Lotte Marines have accepted a posting bid for infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka, so the winning team now has the right to negotiate with him.

Today in former Brewers:

We're still a couple of weeks away from the Rule 5 Draft, but previews continue to trickle in: Minor League Baseball Prospects has ten players to watch, and The Crawfish Boxes has eleven more.

One of minor league baseball's more interesting stories might be drawing to a close: Dinesh Patel, one of the first Indian players to play professionally in the United States, was cut by the Pirates this week. The organization still has fellow Indian Rinku Singh, though.

I'm not sure there's ever been a really good time to visit Cleveland, but if you're already there this might be something cool to check out: The Indians' winter theme park at Progressive Field opens today.

If you're still looking for something else to read today, I'd highly recommend True Blue LA's Blue Dahlia Series. I'm not sure how to describe it, but it might be the most fascinating and addictive thing I've read this week.

Happy birthday to:

  • AZL Brewer Cody Adams, who turns 24 today.
  • Hall of Famer and 1901 Brewer Hugh Duffy, who would have turned 144 today.
  • 1991-99 Brewer Cal Eldred, who turned 43 Wednesday.
  • 1996-97 Brewer Ben McDonald, who also turned 43 Wednesday.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm becoming what I think about.

Drink up.