Kevin Correia said last night that he expects to be non-tendered by the Padres if the two sides can’t agree on a contract for 2010 by the end of the week. Correia is arbitration eligible for the first time after going 12-11 with a 3.91 ERA in 33 starts and the Padres are worried about actually having to, you know, pay him.
I don’t think they are going to allow me to get to arbitration. From what I understand, they’re not going to offer me a contract if arbitration is involved. They made an offer to me, but it was obviously below the arbitration value. I could still end up playing here. And this is where I want to play. The door is not closed. I want to stay here, but they have a lot of new people making decisions. The direction has been kind of clear the last few days.
The amazing thing is that Correia stands to make something like $2.5 million via arbitration after earning $750,000 in 2009, so the Padres either simply don’t want him or have some serious payroll issues. Getting released by San Diego might actually be the best thing for Correia, who seemingly wouldn’t have much trouble finding a deal that guarantees him at least $2.5 million on the open market.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.