Jeff Blair of the Toronto Globe and Mail says that if the Reds are seriously thinking about cutting bait on Brandon Phillips, the Blue Jays would want him to be their third baseman.
You’ll recall, of course, that the Blue Jays shipped their previous third baseman — Scott Rolen — to the Reds just last season, and that his salary is one of the big reasons that the cash-crunched Reds have to give up guys like Brandon Phillips. You’ll also recall that the Jays received the Reds’ third baseman Edwin Encarnacion in the deal.
Given that the trade apparently filled no holes for either team and harmed one financially, I’m tempted to deem the Rolen trade the most pointless trade in recent memory.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.