MLB Notes: Brewer to put on the blades

Milwaukee Brewers batter Nyjer Morgan. (REUTERS/Jim Young)

Milwaukee Brewers batter Nyjer Morgan. (REUTERS/Jim Young)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:17 PM ET

Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Nyjer Morgan, who grew up playing hockey in the Bay Area, will practise with the San Jose Sharks Wednesday afternoon.

"I'm really excited to get on the ice with the team," Morgan told the Sharks website. "I've been a die-hard fan since the team came to San Jose in 1991. I will never forget the George Kingston and Patty Falloon days. I'm not sure the guys are ready for me!"

Morgan, 31, played seven games for the Regina Pats of the WHL in the 1999-2000 season but soon after turned his focus to baseball.

"We're excited to see what he can do out here," Sharks captain Joe Thornton said.

DIAMONDBACKS DEAL AT THE BUZZER

Just minutes before an arbitration hearing, the Arizona Diamondbacks and all-star catcher agreed Tuesday to a one-year contract worth $5.9 million.

"I was sitting in the (hearing) room," Montero told MLB.com by phone from Tampa, Fla. "I was getting a bottle of water right before it was supposed to start and they told me to step outside to talk."

Montero was asking for $6.8 million through arbitration while the Diamondbacks had offered $5.4 million.

The Diamondbacks also avoided arbitration with infielder Ryan Roberts, who reportedly will make $2 million on a one-year deal.

Montero, 28, led NL catchers in doubles (36) and RBI (84) last season and was second in home runs (18) while hitting .282.

Roberts, 31, hit .249 with 19 home runs and 65 RBI.

INDIANS GET TRIPLE-A STAR

The Cleveland Indians have acquired Russ Canzler, last season's International League MVP, from the Tampa Bay Rays for cash.

Canzler played left field, right field, third base and first base at triple-A Durham, batting .314 with 18 homers and 83 RBI. He made his major league debut for the Rays Sept. 11.

The 25-year-old led the International League in doubles (40) and slugging percentage (.530), finished second in runs (78) and third in hits (149).

Drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 2004, he signed with Tampa Bay as a minor-league free agent before last season.

CALL 'EM THE ASTROS

The Houston Astros will switch leagues but not names.

Owner Jim Crane had pondered a new moniker for the franchise but, after getting feedback from season-ticket holders, decided to stick with Astros.

The team began play in 1962 as the Colt .45s and became the Astros in 1965, coinciding with a move to the Astrodome, the world's first domed stadium.

The Astros will move to the AL West from the NL Central in 2013.

PHILS CALL ON QUALLS

The Philadelphia Phillies signed reliever Chad Qualls to a one-year, $1.15-million contract Tuesday -- moving quickly to replace Brad Lidge in the bullpen.

Qualls' deal includes performance and award bonuses, the team said. He provides manager Charlie Manuel with a setup option to get to closer Jonathan Papelbon.

Qualls, 33, made a team-high 77 appearances for the San Diego Padres in 2011. He posted a 6-8 record with a 3.51 earned-run average.

Lidge, 35, signed a one-year contract last week with the Washington Nationals.

BRIEFLY

The New York Yankees have hired former Chicago Cubs general manager Jim Hendry as a special assignment scout, reports said ... The Detroit Tigers' insurance policy will pick up only about half of Victor Martinez's contract for 2012, ESPN.com reports. Martinez, who will miss the entire season because of a left knee injury, will make $13 million nonetheless, with the Tigers paying $6 million to $7 million.


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