Thursday, January 26, 2017

Rounding the Bases

Lots of news with passings and the inbox has seemingly filled up overnight.
I likely will have a few extra posts over the next day or so on various things,so hopefully those will interesting to some of you.

Two podcasts have been listed already this week and I have another one finished and likely to go up either Friday or the weekend,so keep an eye out for that...

A few baseball moves for the Indians and Giants on tap,but first a few words on the death of Yordano Ventura and Andy Marte in separate accidents in the Dominican Republic.

Ventura was known for his hard throwing and being part of the World Series champion Royals in 2015 and often hit the magic 100 MPH target,while Marte was at one time considered one of the games future stars as a highly touted 3rd base prospect as he rose through the Atlanta system,but never was able to hit as well as projected and wound up as one of those "4A" players that was excellent in AAA,but unable to post similar major league numbers.

As tragic as the loss of these players are,the bigger story is how it has opened my eyes to just how dangerous the roads are in the Dominican Republic.
I mentioned the deaths to Cherie in passing and I was surprised that the first thing that she said was about the horrible driving conditions there.
I looked it up shortly thereafter and this ESPN article by Jerry Crasnick described the situation there perfectly.
It seems like an awful situation and one with no solution in sight....

The Indians added a player that I hoped (In hindsight,I might have hyped that far more than it proved to be worth) that they would add last year to a minor league contract and I have a feeling that this player is going to make the team in outfielder Austin Jackson.
The 30 year old Jackson missed much of last season with an injury (54 games,.254 0 Hr and 18 RBI) with the White Sox,but I suspect Jackson should take up the spot vacated by Rajai Davis and could challenge for the center field position with Tyler Naquin and Abraham Almonte.
The deal pays Jackson 1.5 million if he makes the roster and a maximum of four million,if Jackson hits all incentives.
As some one that has never been an Abraham Almonte fan and having watched the late season stick struggles of Tyler Naquin (The book on him is out),this might be (IF Jackson can stay healthy) a very valuable move for the Wahoos....

Meanwhile in San Francisco,the Giants added two players,one very intriguing and the Baysiders designated another for assignment.
Versatile infielder Ehire Adrianza was designated for assignment after these moves,but would be offered a spring training invite should he clear waivers...

The interesting signing was of Korean third baseman Jae-Gyun Hwang to a minor league deal that would pay him a million and a half,should Hwang make the roster.
Hwang is 29,but this is a very inexpensive chance to take,if Hwang proves to be productive as he could allow Eduardo Nunez to play the super utility "Zobrist" position,if he (and Conor Gillespie) could hold down third base.
Hwang hit .335 with 29 homers in a hitters league with 25 stolen bases and despite being a far from sure thing is an interesting flyer to take for a team that still needs help with the bats...

The Giants also signed veteran Nick Hundley to likely be the backup catcher to Buster Posey.
Hundley hit ten homers in just over eighty games with the Rockies last season,so he does provide some power for the Posey off days and isn't a negative to the point of being afraid to move Posey to first base here and there to keep him from wearing down too much.
Hundley likely has the edge for the job,but the Giants do have last years backup Trevor Brown returning with Tim Federowicz and Josmil Pinto signed to minor league deal to challenge....

So much more to write about we have the passing of Mary Tyler Moore among others,a filled up inbox,new TRS boxing ratings for the year and more!
Stay tuned!!

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