Did Chris Coghlan have a 'historic' rookie year?

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Juan C. Rodriguez covers the Marlins for the Florida Sun Sentinel and apparently believes that Chris Coghlan had an absolutely spectacular rookie season.
Last week Rodriguez criticized the Baseball Bloggers Alliance for ranking Coghlan fourth in their Rookie of the Year balloting despite “the historic nature of Coghlan’s offensive season.” This week Rodriguez criticized the Players Association for choosing J.A. Happ as their Rookie of the Year despite Coghlan’s “multitude of historic achievements.”
In reality the basis for Coghlan’s supposed “historic” rookie season was notching 50 hits in back-to-back months, which while very impressive merely contributed to his batting .321/.390/.460 in 128 games overall. Don’t get me wrong, those are strong numbers for a rookie. However, there’s nothing “historic” about an .850 OPS from a left fielder, nor is there anything “historic” about a poor defensive player totaling nine homers, 47 RBIs, and 84 runs in 565 plate appearances.
Fellow rookie Andrew McCutchen hit .286/.365/.471 in 108 games to nearly match Coghlan with an .836 OPS, and he did so while swiping 22 bases and playing an excellent center field. According to Fan Graphs the sum of Coghlan’s offensive and defensive contributions were worth 23.9 runs above replacement level, which tied for 60th among NL position players. McCutchen was 34.0 runs above replacement level, which ranked 28th. Who had the historic rookie season, again?
And there were some good rookie pitchers too. Happ was 12-4 with a 2.93 ERA in 166 innings. Tommy Hanson went 11-4 with a 2.89 ERA 128 innings. Randy Wells went 12-10 with a 3.05 ERA in 165 innings. McCutchen and all three pitchers have strong arguments for being more valuable than a left fielder with an .850 OPS. Coghlan played very well and deserves consideration for Rookie of the Year awards, but there’s nothing “historic” about his rookie season no matter how much Rodriguez enjoyed covering him.

Rob Manfred says Tampa Bay must pick up pace on new stadium

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred wants Tampa Bay to work a little quicker on getting the Rays a new ballpark.

Rays Principal Owner Stuart Sternberg has been working for nearly a decade to get a new stadium for the club and signed a three-year agreement with the City of St. Petersburg early in 2016 to search for a site in the Tampa Bay area. Manfred wants that search to pick up some steam.

“I think it’s fair to say we want the process to take on a better pace moving forward,” Manfred said Wednesday night at Tropicana Field, home of the Rays since their first season in 1998.

The Rays were averaging 15,815 fans per game before Wednesday night’s contest against the Toronto Blue Jays. That is just over half the major league average of 30,470. Tropicana Field and its location have been almost universally blamed as the reason for the poor attendance.

“I’ve been pretty clear that they need a new facility here, a major league quality facility in an A-plus location,” Manfred said. “It is time to move that decision to the front burner here in Tampa.”

The matter of how a stadium would be financed has been tabled until a site is determined, but Sternberg continued to express confidence in the Tampa Bay market.

“I’ve had the opportunity to bail on it many times over the years,” he said. “I won’t say this is a slam dunk, it’s certainly not. But I think we can do something that’ll at least double our attendance. That’s a lot to ask for.”

Manfred said Major League Baseball “doesn’t have a firm timetable” for what steps to take if the Rays fail to get an agreement to build a new stadium in the Tampa Bay area, but but added that “it is a topic of discussion in the industry, the lack of progress.”

More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball

Robinson Cano leaves game with hamstring tightness

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Bad news for the Mariners this evening: Robinson Cano left Seattle’s game against the Atlanta Braves with tightness in his left hamstring.

Cano walked off the field after legging out a double — his second of the game — in the third inning. He pulled up as he approached second base and walked off the field, accompanied by a trainer. There was no immediate word on the severity of the injury. The Mariners have a day off Thursday before opening a series at the Yankees on Friday night, so they have some time to evaluate him.

Cano is hitting .277/.377/.460 with 19 homers and 78 RBI on the year.