The upcoming election is certain to fuel the most polarizing Hall discussion since career hits leader Pete Rose's betting troubles put him on baseball's permanently ineligible list, barring him from the BBWAA ballot.
RED SOX: In Boston, the Red Sox traded right-handers Zach Stewart and Sandy Rosario and third baseman Danny Valencia.
In a flurry of moves Wednesday, they dealt Stewart to the Pittsburgh Pirates and Rosario to the Oakland Athletics for players to be named and sent Valencia to the Baltimore Orioles for cash considerations.
All three players had been designated for assignment on Nov. 20.
Stewart was 0-2 with a 22.24 ERA in two starts after being obtained from the Chicago White Sox on June 24 for Kevin Youkilis. The Red Sox had claimed Rosario from the Miami Marlins on Oct. 17. Valencia was 4-for-28 for Boston last season, batting .143 with one homer and four RBIs. The Red Sox obtained him from the Minnesota Twins on Aug. 5.
Also Wednesday, the Sox named Greg Colbrunn as their hitting coach. Colbrunn replaces Dave Magadan, who was hired as hitting coach for the Texas Rangers on Oct. 19 after six years in that position with the Red Sox.
Colbrunn, 43, will be coaching in the majors for the first time. He played in 992 major-league games for seven teams, mostly as a first baseman, batting .289 with 98 homers and 422 RBIs.
YANKEES: In New York, Andy Pettitte signed a one-year deal with the Yankees worth $12 million on Wednesday, putting baseball's biggest postseason winner back in pinstripes.
Pettitte turns 41 in June. He retired after the 2010 season, then decided to come back this year and signed a contract guaranteeing $2.5 million.
Pettitte went 5-4 with a 2.87 ERA in 12 starts. He missed almost three months because of a broken lower left leg, sustained when he was hit by a line drive off the bat of Cleveland's Casey Kotchman on June 27.
Pettitte is 245-142 lifetime with the Yankees and Houston in 17 seasons. He is 19-11 in the postseason.
REDS: In Cincinnati, the Reds signed Jonathan Broxton to a three-year, $21 million contract, giving the NL Central champions a potential closer.
Broxton came to the Reds last July in a trade with Kansas City and was part of their push toward the playoffs. He filled in as the closer when Aroldis Chapman came down with a tired shoulder and had four saves in six chances overall with a 2.82 ERA, impressing the Reds.
Ganong Posts Fastest Time in 2nd Training Run; Bode Sitting Out Downhill
BEAVER CREEK, Colo. -- Travis Ganong of the United States turned in the fastest time in the downhill training run Wednesday on the Birds of Prey course.
The first racer out of the starting gate, Ganong flew through the course in 1 minute, 41.38 seconds, a time that held up for the rest of the afternoon. He edged Siegmar Klotz of Italy by 0.29 seconds. Joachim Puchner of Austria was third.
The downhill race is scheduled for Friday. Bode Miller is the defending champion, but won't compete to give his left knee more time to heal after undergoing microfracture surgery nine months ago.
Long Putters To Go Belly Up
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Golf is proposing to ban the putting stroke used by three of the last five major champions.
The sport's ruling bodies announced a new rule Wednesday that would make it illegal to anchor the club in making a stroke. The proposed rule is aimed at belly putters and long putters that are pressed against the body. Keegan Bradley was the first player to win a major with the belly putter at the 2011 PGA Championship. Webb Simpson and Ernie Els used belly putters to win majors this year.
Officials say the golf stroke should be a free swing, and anchoring a club eliminates part of the skill.
The rule would apply to golfers at every level. It would not take effect until 2016.