Francisco Cervelli has a new helmet

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You may now update all of your old “David Wright looks funny in that big batting helmet” jokes to Francsico Cervelli, who will be donning one in New York this season after suffering his second concussion earlier this week:

Cervelli said he plans to wear the helmet at the plate all season, though he won’t wear it when catching or running the bases.

“To me it just makes sense,” said Girardi, who would make the new
helmets mandatory. “It you have something you’ve had to deal with, if
there’s some way to improve the protection or keep you maybe from being
injured again, it makes sense to use that device… It is much more
padded. It’s really unbelievable. You look at it and think ‘why don’t
more people wear it? Why doesn’t everyone wear it?'”

Yeah, on second thought, let’s just 86 the jokes, OK?  Yes, the helmet looks odd, but we’re only just now starting to realize how serious concussions — especially second and third concussions — really are.  Last night there were a lot of jokes among Yankees writers in the Twitterverse regarding Cervelli’s new headgear — and apparently he’s taking some mocking from his teammates too — but a guy’s health and career are no laughing matter.

If I was standing in against 95 mph heat, I’d wear a propeller hat, a mixing bowl or a church crown on my head if I thought it’d keep me safe.

Josh Johnson retires from baseball

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 21: Josh Johnson #55 of the San Diego Padres poses during Picture Day on February 21, 2014 at the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
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Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.

Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.

Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.

Report: Angels close to a multi-year deal with Luis Valbuena

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 08:  Luis Valbuena #18 of the Houston Astros hits a three run walkoff home run in the ninth inning to defeat the Oakland Athletics 10-9 at Minute Maid Park on July 8, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.

Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.

Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.