Baseball-Major League Baseball roundup

Dec 11 (The Sports Xchange) - Home-plate collisions, long the staple of highlight reels, are soon to become a thing of the past in the major leagues. Major League Baseball's playing-rules committee recommended outlawing the collisions Wednesday during the Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. The rule must be approved by both the 30 major league owners and the Major League Baseball Players Association in order for it to be implemented in time for next season. Otherwise, it can be unilaterally imposed by the committee for the start of the 2015 season. - - Milwaukee Brewers manager Ron Roenicke went to bat for outfielder Ryan Braun at baseball's winter meetings, calling the outfielder a good young man who made a mistake. Braun was suspended by Major League Baseball for the final 65 games of the regular season in 2013 because of ties to the Biogenesis anti-aging clinic in south Florida and performance-enhancing drugs. "If you are OK with people making mistakes -- which I certainly am -- you've got to look at what kind of person this guy is," Roenicke said. "This is a good guy." - - Right-hander Charlie Morton agreed to a three-year, $21 million contract extension that includes a team option for 2017, the Pittsburgh Pirates announced. Morton, who was to be eligible for free agency after the 2014 season, will make $4 million in 2014, $8 million in 2015 and 2016, and $9.5 million or a $1 million buyout for 2017, according to a Yahoo! Sports report. - - The Oakland Athletics traded left-hander Jerry Blevins to the Washington Nationals for minor league outfielder Billy Burns. Blevins posted a 5-0 record with a 3.15 ERA in a career-high 67 games in 2013. The reliever has a 13-6 career record with a 3.30 ERA in 281 major league games spanning seven seasons with the Athletics. - - The Seattle Mariners continued to be active during baseball's winter meetings, acquiring first baseman/outfielder Logan Morrison from the Miami Marlins in a deal for right-handed reliever Carter Capps, according to reports. The 25-year-old Morrison has struggled the past two years with injuries. He batted .242 with six home runs in 85 games for the Marlins last season. But he does have some pop in his bat, hitting 23 homers for the Marlins in 2011. - - Jerry Hairston Jr. announced his retirement, following a 16-year major league career, and will apparently join the Los Angeles Dodgers' new television channel. Hairston was a versatile player, spending time at every position except pitcher and catcher. Over 1,442 major league games, he hit .257 with 70 home runs, 420 RBIs and 147 stolen bases. - - The Los Angeles Dodgers plan to keep All-Star outfielder Matt Kemp, his agent Dave Stewart said Wednesday. Stewart said he met with Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti on Wednesday and was told the team plans to keep Kemp rather than trade him. "He said that they're not going to move him," Stewart said, via the Los Angeles Times. The Dodgers have talked to several teams about Kemp during the winter meetings and earlier in this offseason, according to, and had even said they would take on some of the $128 million remaining on the center fielder's contract over the next six seasons. - - The New York Mets and 40-year-old right-hander Bartolo Colon have agreed to a two-year contract worth $20 million, multiple media outlets reported. Ken Rosenthal of first reported the deal, which is still pending a physical. Colon, who turns 41 on May 24, went 18-6 with a 2.65 ERA in 190 1/3 innings for the Oakland Athletics this past season. He was an All-Star and finished sixth in the AL Cy Young voting. (Editing by Frank Pingue)