I hope Papelbon is happy. Rosenthal:
Billy Wagner is staying with the Mets. He will invoke his no-trade clause rather than accept a deal to the Red Sox, according to a major-league source.
The Sox said that they wouldn’t exercise his option, but would make no guarantees regarding offering him arbitration, which would make him a somewhat less desirable free agent. This part is understandable on some level, it kind of sits with me wrong:
Wagner, coming off Tommy John surgery, also was concerned about his health, a second source said. “It’s not about the option or arbitration. It’s about his desire to end the year healthy for the future,” the source said. “He
feels he has a better chance lasting a month in a less competitive
environment than perhaps two months in a pennant race and playoffs.”
Given how recent his surgery was this is understandable on some level. But there aren’t any guarantees in life, especially for a 38 year-old pitcher. You think he’d want another shot at the postseason.
And really, is staying with the Mets the best thing for someone who cares about his health? The way they’re going, I got even odds on them losing someone to the DL for dengue fever before the year is out.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo reports that the Kansas City Royals are trying to package Ian Kennedy in a potential Wade Davis deal. I’m not sure why they would do that.
Davis has had a relatively disappointing 2016 season. He strikeouts are down, his walks are up as is his ERA. Relative is the key word, though. After his transcendent 2015 season he had nowhere to go but down. He’s still a solid closer at worst and a dominant game-changer if/when he’s on and healthy. He’s also under team control through next season for a mere $10 million, making him one of the better superstar bargains in the game. The Royals were said to be asking a LOT for Davis, possibly more than the nice haul the Yankees got for Aroldis Chapman given that extra year of control. Maybe they can’t get what they’re shooting for with him, but they could probably get a lot.
Throwing Kennedy into a potential deal, however, obviously radically changes the potential deal. Kennedy has a 4.41 ERA and has allowed 26 homers this year, more than anyone in the game. He’s also on the first year of a five-year $70MM contract that includes an opt-out clause after 2017. It was a bad contract when he signed it and seems worse after four months of the 2016 season. If you want a team to take Kennedy along with Davis, you’re basically asking them to give you little if anything in the way of prospects for Davis. You’re asking them to give you Kennedy-salary relief in exchange for Davis.
Which is a good way to get rid of salary, I suppose, but sure seems like the squandering of historically overheated relief pitcher market which the Royals could take advantage of better than a lot of clubs.
The Miami Marlins have reinstated second baseman Dee Gordon from his suspension.
Gordon, of course, has missed the last 80 games while serving his drug suspension. He’s coming off a minor league rehab assignment and will be the everyday second baseman for the contending Marlins. He was hitting .266/.289/.340 with three doubles, two triples, five RBI, 13 runs scored, and six stolen bases in 97 plate appearances when he was popped. He was replaced by Derek Dietrich, who hit a nice .275/.366/.398 with 22 extra-base hits, 30 RBI, and 26 runs scored in 314 PA in Gordon’s absence, so don’t expect a tremendous upgrade at second down the stretch, even if they get a nice upgrade in the utility and depth department.
To make room for Gordon, the Marlins designated utilityman and sometimes hero Don Kelly for assignment. Sad jams.
UPDATE: Gordon issued a video apology on the eve of his reinstatement: