* With his next save
Mariano Rivera will join Trevor Hoffman as the only members of the
500-save club. And it’ll be a while before there’s a third member,
because the active leaders after Rivera are Billy Wagner (385), Troy
Percival (358), Jason Isringhausen (293), and Armando Benitez (289).
The next guy to reach 500? Francisco Rodriguez is eighth on the active list with 228 and he’s the only guy in the top 10 who’s under 34 years old.
* Alex Rodriguez’s homer last night
tied him with Reggie Jackson for 11th place on the all-time list at
563. Next up for Rodriguez is Rafael Palmeiro with 569 and and Harmon
Killebrew with 573, but he’ll likely have to wait until next season to
pass Mark McGwire at 583.
* And just to show how different milestones are in New York compared to Tampa Bay, Jason Bartlett set a Rays franchise record last night by extending his hitting streak to … 19 games. Quinton McCracken held the previous record at 18. Of course he did.
Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun had three more years of arbitration eligibility left, but he and the Angels decided to settle that future business at once on Wednesday, agreeing to a three-year extension worth $26 million, per SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. The contract also includes a $14 million club option for the 2020 season.
Calhoun, 29, has been a dependable right fielder for the Angels over the last three seasons, batting an aggregate .266/.327/.436 with 61 home runs and 216 RBI in 1,895 plate appearances. According to FanGraphs, Calhoun has been the ninth-most valuable right fielder in baseball since the start of the 2014 season with 11.4 Wins Above Replacement. He ranks slightly behind Giancarlo Stanton (11.9) and just ahead of J.D. Martinez (10.9).
The Angels only have a handful of players signed beyond the 2017 season — just Albert Pujols, Mike Trout, Andrelton Simmons, and Calhoun. The club has options on Ricky Nolasco and Huston Street, while many others will be eligible for arbitration.
Nothing is happening as the baseball world waits four more hours for the Hall of Fame announcement. Question: why do it at 6pm? For MLB Network ratings? Let’s be real, there are “Golden Girls” reruns on third-tier basic cable that are gonna draw a bigger audience. Why not announce it now so people can get on with their lives? Oh well.
As we wait, let’s take a look in at Twitter, where Jim Bowden of ESPN passes along the rumor that the Washington Nationals are still interested in signing Matt Wieters and Greg Holland:
Great to know that the Nats’ baseball operations budget is dictated by its capital expenditures. Maybe they shoulda been smart like the Braves and suckered — er, I mean negotiated the local government to pay more for it? GO BRAVES!
Anyway, Bryce Harper had a response to that:
I take that to mean that he’d take the money used to construct the team store and give to Wieters and Holland. I haven’t seen the budget breakdown for the new spring training facility, but that would probably mean a major pay cut for Wieters and Holland. And where would we buy our “Make Baseball Great Again” caps? Think ahead, Bryce. Play the long game here.