Like the bad calls mentioned earlier, Jeter’s bunt attempt with two strikes on him in the seventh ended up not making a difference, but my mouth was agape when he tried to lay it down all the same. What were you thinking, Derek? Did Girardi actually give you the bunt sign with two strikes and a rally brewing?
“That was me. That was stupid. I had the bunt early on and it was taken off, but I thought I would try to do it. It was dumb for me to try and do it with two strikes.”
I suppose you can go one of two ways with this: believe that Jeter thinks he’s invincible and can get away with risky-to-the-point-of-ridiculous plays, or alternatively, believe that for as easy as they make this game look sometimes, it’s crazy out there, especially in the postseason, and even the greatest of ballplayers lose their gravity once in awhile and make a bad decision.
Given the fun I’ve had with Jeter in this space the past some of you may be surprised to hear that I believe the latter. But the fact is that Jeter doesn’t have a long rap sheet of dumb plays over the course of his career, so he can be excused for the rare brain lock.
Especially considering that A.J. Burnett and Mariano Rivera rendered it harmless.
The Phillies have signed free agent outfielder Michael Saunders.
Saunders was an All-Star in 2016 due to his wonderful start, but he cratered in the second half of the season. Overall is numbers looked good — he hit 24 homers and posted a line of .253/.338/.478, but his second half line was .178/.282/.357 in 58 games. He’s not the best defender around either.
The Phillies could use him, however, and if he has another red hot first half, there’s a decent chance they could flip him if they wanted to.
It was first reported that the Blue Jays and Jose Bautista were close to a deal last night. Now Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is near completion. It will likely a two-year contract in the $35-40 million range.
Bautista had a tough 2016, hitting .234/.366/.452 with 22 home runs and 69 RBI, and some clubs likely considered a long-term deal for the 36-year-old too risky, this leading to the relative lack of reported interest in Bautista by other clubs. But back-to-back ALCS appearances by the Jays and the success and popularity Bautista has experienced in Toronto make his re-signing there a pretty sensible move for all involved.
The Jays, who already lost Edwin Encarnacion to free agency, get their slugger back on a short term deal. Unlike anyone else, they don’t have to give up the draft pick attached to him via the qualifying offer. Bautista, in turn, will make, on average, more than he would’ve made on the qualifying offer if he would’ve accepted it and a raise over the $14 million he made in 2016.