Agreed Left-hander Bruce Chen agreed to a $4.25 million, one-year contract Thursday to return to the Kansas City Royals, where he’s spent the past five seasons. Chen became a free agent after last season, but he made it clear that he wanted to return to the Royals. The deal pays $3.25 million this season with a mutual option at $5.5 million for 2015 with a $1 million buyout. The deal is subject to a physical, likely to take place today.
Chosen NBA executive Mark Tatum will become the NBA’s new deputy commissioner when Adam Silver succeeds David Stern on Saturday. Owners unanimously approved the appointment of Tatum, a 15-year veteran of the league office. He will also have the title of chief operations officer. Tatum is the NBA’s executive vice president of global marketing partnerships. The graduate of Cornell and the Harvard Business School joined the NBA in 1999, having previously worked at the Clorox Company, Procter & Gamble, Pepsi, and Major League Baseball.
Announced Defenseman Kevin Bieksa will miss Vancouver’s five-game road trip leading into the Olympic break. The Canucks also announced center Mike Santorelli is expected to miss the rest of the NHL season after undergoing shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum.
Promoted Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly promoted passing game coordinator Mike Denbrock to offensive coordinator. This will be Denbrock’s second stint as offensive coordinator under Kelly. He also served in that role at Grand Valley State from 1992-95, and was Kelly’s defensive coordinator for the Lakers from 1996-98.
Signed The Colorado Avalanche signed goaltender Semyon Varlamov to a five-year extension that goes through the 2018-19 season. The 25-year-old Varlamov is second in the league in saves (1,199) this season and his 26 wins match a career high.
• Swedish midfielder Stefan Ishikazi signed with MLS’s Los Angeles Galaxy. Ishikazi spent the last eight seasons with Elfsborg in Sweden’s first division, scoring 48 goals in 183 league games while winning two championships.
Retired Six-time Olympic medalist Rebecca Soni retired from swimming. The 26-year-old American plans to launch a new lifestyle company and blog.
• Forward Jay Pandolfo is retiring after 15 seasons in the NHL and two Stanley Cups with the Devils. The 39-year-old also played for the Islanders and Bruins, totaling 100 goals and 126 assists in 899 games.