Rockies sign Iannetta for three years, $8.3 million

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The Denver Post’s Troy Renck reports that the Rockies and Chris Iannetta have agreed to terms on a three-year, $8.3 million contract that will cover the catcher’s arbitration years.
The deal also includes a $5 million club option for 2013, Iannetta’s first season of free agency.
While indications were that this was coming, it’s still surprising to see the 26-year-old Iannetta sign after a season in which he lost his job down the stretch. He could have earned considerably more during his arbitration years.
Iannetta was regarded as one of the game’s top young catchers after hitting .264/.390/.504 in 333 at-bats during a breakthrough 2008. Jim Tracy, though, didn’t seem to think so much of him after replacing Clint Hurdle as Colorado’s manager. Yorvit Torrealba started over him in September, and Iannetta finished the year with a .228/.344/.460 line in 289 at-bats.
Of course, the 804 OPS is still very good for a catcher, as were the 16 homers and 52 RBI in such a modest number of at-bats. The Rockies were smart to lock him in at such a reasonable salary since he was willing. They very likely just saved themselves at least $4 million for the next three years, plus a few million more from what he would have received in his first year of free agency.

Enrique Hernandez’s performance one for the record books

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Entering Thursday’s NLCS Game 5, Dodgers outfielder Enrique Hernandez had never hit a home run nor even driven in a run in the playoffs in his four-year career. He had homered twice in a regular season game just twice and his career-high for RBI in a game was four.

Hernandez hit three home runs and knocked in seven runs to help power the Dodgers past the Cubs 11-1 to win the National League pennant and punch their ticket to the World Series. His first homer was a solo homer to center field in the second inning off of starter Jose Quintana. He blasted a grand slam to right field off of Hector Rondon in the fourth, then tacked on a two-run blast in the ninth inning off of Mike Montgomery to make it 11-1.

Hernandez is the 10th player to hit three home runs in a postseason game. Jose Altuve, of course, did it two weeks ago in Game 1 of the ALDS against the Red Sox. Before Altuve, Pablo Sandoval (2012), Albert Pujols (2011), and Adrian Beltre (2011) were the last players to accomplish the feat. As Jayson Stark points out, Hernandez joins Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, Adam Kennedy, and Beltre as players to hit three homers in a series clincher.

Hernandez’s seven RBI set a new National League record for a postseason game. Only four other players — Troy O’Leary, John Valentin, Mo Vaughn, and Edgar Martinez — accomplished the feat.

No one has hit three home runs and knocked in seven-plus in a game… until Hernandez. He certainly picked a good time to break out.