Eric Hinske: ownership's secret weapon

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FanGraph’s R.J. Anderson wonders if Eric Hinske won’t work his magic once again and persuade Jason Heyward to sign an uber-team-friendly contract with the Braves.  It was Hinske, you’ll recall who did that with Evan Longoria, famously telling the young stud not to pass up his first shot at money and leading him to sign a six-year, $17.5M extension with the Rays that already makes him the cheapest superstar in the game and will only get more ridiculously team-friendly as time goes on.

As a selfish Braves fan I’d love to see Heyward sign, say, a 15-year, $15 million deal. As a generally pro-player fellow who likes to see guys get paid what they’re worth, I hope that Heyward stays the heck away from Hinske.

Not that there aren’t other reasons to stay away from him . . .

David Phelps to undergo Tommy John surgery

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Pitcher David Phelps has a torn UCL and will undergo Tommy John surgery, ending his 2018 season, the Mariners announced on Wednesday. Phelps was making brief one-inning stints in the Cactus League as he worked his way back from a procedure to remove a bone spur from his elbow last September. He said he felt the ligament tear on his final pitch against the Angels in his March 17 appearance.

Phelps, 31, was expected to set up for closer Edwin Diaz. The right-hander, between the Marlins and Mariners last season, posted a 3.40 ERA with a 62/26 K/BB ratio in 55 2/3 innings. He and the Mariners avoided arbitration in January, agreeing on a $5.55 million salary for the 2018 campaign. Phelps will become eligible to become a free agent at the end of the season.

As the Mariners noted in their statement, the expected recovery period for Tommy John surgery is 12-15 months, so this very likely cuts into Phelps’ 2019 season as well.