3:49 PM: McGwire just got done answering questions from the media at the team’s Winter Warm-Up event in St. Louis. Dave van Dyck of the Chicago Tribune reports that the event “was cut short after six minutes of a testy give-and-take.”
2:32 PM: Matthew Leach of MLB.com reports that “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns N’ Roses played as Mark McGwire took the stage to a standing ovation at the Cardinals’ “Winter Warm-Up” event on Sunday. See a picture of the scene here.
I think “The Needle And The Damage Done” by Neil Young would have been a more appropriate choice, but that’s just me.
Third baseman Anthony Rendon is reportedly open to a contract extension with the Nationals, Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post said Sunday. Rendon told reporters that he didn’t know if agent Scott Boras would discuss an extension with the club, contrary to previous reports confirming the two had already started that conversation.
Rendon, 27, is coming off of his best career year to date. He finished the 2017 season batting .301/.403/.533 with 25 home runs and 100 RBI through 605 plate appearances, good enough to earn him sixth place in NL MVP voting. He made his third postseason appearance after helping Nationals through the National League Division Series, and contributed a pair of extra-base hits before the team was eliminated by the Cubs in Game 5.
Rendon is still arbitration-eligible through 2019, but stands to receive a hefty payday once he enters free agency in 2020. While it stands to reason that the Nats would want to lock up a player who contributed a whopping 6.9 fWAR last year, making him the most valuable player on their roster, an extension appeals to Rendon as well. “Why not stay with one organization?” he said Sunday. The 2018 season will be his sixth with the team.