The New York Post is known for stirring the pot with its screaming headlines and creative uses of photo shop (Pedro’s head on a baby’s body?) But they can push the envelope just as well with word-play. This from Angela Montefinise:
Big Apple women may soon be able to take a ride on Derek Jeter — the bridge, that is. Bronx leaders have proposed naming the soon-to-be-built East 153rd Street bridge for the Yankee shortstop.
Maybe it’s just me, but it seems kind of sexist that only women will be allowed to use the bridge. I’m sure there are plenty of male Yankee fans who have man-crushes on their beloved shortstop — and could also use an easier commute.
OK, OK I get it. She’s being edgy. And at least Ms. Montefinise waits until the bottom of her story to mention the length of “The Jeter” (512 feet!!).
But there are two things I’m wondering about.
1) The bridge costs only $87 million. Jeter himself will make $21 million next season, the final year of his 10-year $189-million deal. This doesn’t seem like a match to me, almost like the city is being a little cheap. In fact, maybe they should just rename the whole town “Derek Jeter City.”
2) As the first commenter in the story points out, “What happens when he retires, then decides to un-retire and play for boston?” Well at that point, Minka Kelly would dump him wouldn’t she? After all, it’s not like Boston will rename it the “Derek Jeter Freedom Trail.”
Follow me on Twitter at @bharks. For more baseball news, go to NBCSports.com.
According to Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post, Nationals infielder Danny Espinosa declined to attend the team’s annual Winterfest because of his dissatisfaction with management following their trade for outfielder Adam Eaton.
A source told Castillo that Espinosa’s unhappiness stemmed from a belief that the acquisition would jeopardize his starting role in 2017. With Eaton in center field, Trea Turner will likely return to his post at shortstop, leaving Espinosa out in the cold — or, as the case may be, on the bench. The move shouldn’t come as a big surprise to Espinosa, however, as Nationals’ GM Mike Rizzo spoke to the possibility of trading the infielder or reassigning him to a utility role back in early November.
Offensively, the 29-year-old had a down year in 2016, slashing just .209/.306/.378 with 24 home runs in 601 PA. Defensively, he still profiles among the top shortstops in the National League, with eight DRS (Defensive Runs Saved) and 8.3 Def (Defensive Runs Above Average) in his seventh year with the club.
Espinosa will reach free agency after the 2017 season.
The Red Sox might be trying to move the wrong pitcher, according to the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo. Cafardo revealed that while the Sox have been trying to market right-hander Clay Buchholz, more teams would be interested in trades involving southpaw Drew Pomeranz.
The club appears reluctant to deal Pomeranz, especially because his price tag comes in at a cool $4.7 million to Buchholz’s $13.5 million in 2017. Those who have already expressed interest in the veteran hurlers, including the Twins, Mariners and Royals, also seem put off by Buchholz’s salary requirements as he enters his 32nd year.
Health could be another factor preventing teams from jumping to make trade offers, as Cafardo quotes an AL executive who believes the “medicals on both Pomeranz and Buchholz probably aren’t that great.” Neither pitcher suffered any major injuries during the 2016 season, though Pomeranz missed just over a week of play due to forearm soreness.
Pomeranz outperformed his fellow starter in 2016, pitching to a 3.32 ERA and career-best 9.8 K/9 through 170 2/3 innings with the Padres and Red Sox. He got off to an exceptionally strong start in San Diego, where his ERA dropped to 2.47 through the first half of the year before the Padres dealt him to Boston for minor league right-hander Anderson Espinoza. Buchholz, on the other hand, struggled with a 4.78 ERA and saw a decline in both his BB/9 and K/9 rates as he worked out a career-low 1.69 K/BB through 139 1/3 innings with the Sox.