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The One Area Every MLB Contender Must Still Improve Before 2017 Season

Spring training is on the horizon—squint and you can see it through the winter haze. Still, every MLB contender has weaknesses to address before bats and balls start cracking and the smell of cut grass wafts on the breeze.

For some, it's minor tinkering. For others, it's a glaring hole to be filled. Everyone needs something, however. It's the nature of the offseason.

Jarrod Dyson to Mariners for Nathan Karns: Latest Trade Details, Reaction

The Seattle Mariners made a move to upgrade their outfield Friday when they acquired Jarrod Dyson from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for right-handed pitcher Nathan Karns, according to the News Tribune's Bob Dutton.  

Seth Smith Traded to Orioles for Yovani Gallardo: Latest Details, Reaction

The Baltimore Orioles have agreed to trade right-handed pitcher Yovani Gallardo to the Seattle Mariners for outfielder Seth Smith

The Orioles officially announced the deal on Twitter, also noting they sent cash considerations to the Mariners.  

Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said Gallardo was an ideal fit for what the team needed heading into 2017.

Luis Valbuena: Latest News, Rumors, Speculation Surrounding Free-Agent 3B

Veteran infielder Luis Valbuena is still searching for a landing spot in free agency after slugging 66 home runs over the past four years.

Continue for updates.

Would Bonds, Clemens Entry Open Up Hall of Fame Floodgates?

How much juice can the National Baseball Hall of Fame hold? We're going to find out.

The sea change in the voting for the Hall of Fame can't be ignored. It first became apparent when Mike Piazza, long suspected of needing performance-enhancing drugs to slug more homers than any other catcher, got into Cooperstown with 83 percent of the vote in 2016.

Now the revolution is projected to continue in 2017.

MLB Spring Training 2017: The 10 1st Basemen to Watch

Some of the league's most dynamic offensive players call first base home.

Miguel Cabrera, Paul Goldschmidt, Anthony Rizzo, Joey Votto and Freddie Freeman are all elite-level sluggers and true superstars in the sport.

You won't find any of those players on the following list, though.

Ahead we'll take a look at the 10 first basemen who, for a variety of reasons, will be worth keeping an eye on this spring.

Brandon Phillips Reportedly Blocked a Trade to Braves: Details, Reaction

Brandon Phillips is apparently still not ready to leave the Cincinnati Reds. 

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the second baseman used his no-trade clause to block a potential deal to the Atlanta Braves in November.

Edwin Encarnacion to Indians: Takeaways from DH's Introductory Press Conference

The Cleveland Indians officially introduced prized free-agent signing Edwin Encarnacion on Thursday.

Yankees' Next Big Moves Will Make or Break New Era's Future

It's not easy to do what the New York Yankees have done. It's even tougher to do what they have to do next. 

Ranking the 2016-17 MLB Offseason's 15 Largest Contracts from Worst to Best

OK, so the 2016-2017 MLB offseason hasn't been the wild spending bonanza that last winter's offseason was. But as evidence that it hasn't been all bad, I submit 15 contracts worth at least $20 million.

How about we pass the time by ranking them?

Let's go from the worst to the best. Or, put another way, from the biggest bust to the biggest steal. This is going to require weighing a multitude of factors, but they can be boiled down to a couple basic questions:

Poll

Best of the American League:

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