At least Dan Shaughnessy is honest

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Unlike Heyman, Dan Shaughnessy admits that he just goes with his gut when it comes to the Hall of Fame:

Each Hall voter applies his own standards, and mine often references the famous line that Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart applied to pornography. Stewart argued that he might not be able to
define what was pornographic, “but I know it when I see it.”

Which is why Shaughnessy says, regarding Edgar Martinez, “I just can’t bring myself to put him in Cooperstown alongside Ted Williams, Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig.” That’s well and good if you’re a small-Hall kind of guy.

Of course, given how much time he spent over the past decade arguing in favor of Jim Rice, I’m guessing that Shaughnessy is not a small hall guy. Or at least not when it comes to Red Sox.

Thinking more deeply about it, if his whole pornography/Hall of Fame analogy holds up, Shaughnessy’s yes on Rice, no on Edgar Martinez thing might give us some scary insight into what kind of kinky stuff turns that curly-haired rascal on.

Now try to get that image out of your head.

Robinson Cano hit his 300th home run last night

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Last night Robinson Cano hit a solo homer in the ninth inning of the Mariners’ loss to the Texas Rangers. It was his 22nd on the season. Though it was insignificant to the outcome of that game, it was significant to Cano: it was his 300th career homer.

While we’ve become accustomed to not caring much about home run milestones south of, say, 500, 300 homers for Cano is a big deal, as he’s only the third second baseman to cross that threshold in baseball history. The other two: Jeff Kent, at 377, and Rogers Hornsby at 301.

Cano, who turns 35 next month, has a career line of .305/.354/.495 and 1,179 RBI, 512 doubles and 33 triples to go with those bombs. He’s in his 13th big league season and still has six more years left on his deal with the Mariners. He’s averaged 24 homers a year since coming to the Mariners. While he’ll obviously trail off at some point — and while great second baseman’s have this weird habit of just suddenly falling off a cliff — it’s highly likely that he’ll finish his career as the all-time home run leader among second baseman. If he remains healthy he should also get over 3,000 hits in his career.

Cooperstown, here he comes.

Reds sign catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year deal

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Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports that the Reds have signed catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year contract extension. The terms: $16 million total, with a $7.5 million club option for the 2022 season that has a $500,000 buyout. He also received a $1.75 million signing bonus.

The deal buys out all three of his arbitration years — he was going to be eligible for the first time this offseason — and the first year of his potential free agency. The club option buys a second. Barnhart made $575,000 this season.

Barnhart, 26, is finishing his second season as the Reds primary catcher. This year he’s hitting .272/.349/.399 with six homers and 42 RBI in 113 games. For his career he has a line of .257/.328/.366 in 330 major league games. His real value is defensive, however. He leads the National League in caught stealing percentage and number of base stealers caught (31-for-70, 44%) and leads all players at any position in the league in defensive WAR according to Baseball-Reference.com.