Ned Colletti called out Matt Kemp the other day. Yesterday Dave Stewart, who (a) is Matt Kemp’s agent; and (b) is one of the more intimidating dudes to have played the game in recent
history, fired back:
“This kind of thing in all the years I’ve been in baseball has never
happened with any general manager on any team I’ve ever played on where
you single out a player and you hold him accountable for the outcome of
what 24 other players are doing as well. There are 25
players on a team.”
Stewart also made a point to mention that Kemp is up for arbitration in the near future and within a couple of years of free agency. Which, given the context, strikes me as a warning to Colletti that if things keep up the way they are and his client keeps getting called out, Stewart and Kemp may not be in a dealing mood.
Which is a problem. Not as big a problem as the lousy signal it sends to every other player currently on or ever considering joining the Dodgers while Ned Colletti is on the job (i.e. we’ll throw you under the bus is we have to) but a problem all the same.
The Associated Press is reporting that the spring training schedule will be shortened by two days starting in 2018. That change comes as part of the new collective bargaining agreement, which was agreed to last month.
Specifically, the voluntary reporting date for pitchers, catchers, and injured players has been changed to 43 days before the start of the regular season, down from 45. For the rest of the players, the reporting date is 38 days before the start of the regular season, down from 40.
The change goes hand-in-hand with allowing teams 187 days, rather than 183, to complete their 162-game regular season schedule.
While just about everyone seems to be in agreement that the spring training exhibition schedule is too long, team owners are likely very hesitant to shorten that part of the spring schedule because it would cost them money. So they’re just allowing players to arrive to camp a couple of days later.
Update (7:05 PM EST): The Rays and Dodgers have both announced the trade.
Update (6:57 PM EST): That was fast. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports the two sides have agreed to the trade. Forsythe for De Leon. An announcement is expected shortly.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that the Dodgers and Rays are “deep into discussions” on a trade involving second baseman Logan Forsythe. Passan adds that the two sides have discussed pitcher Jose De Leon — the Dodgers’ top pitching prospect — as part of the return for Forsythe, but it’s unclear if he’s in the deal currently being discussed.
Forsythe, 30, hit a productive .264/.333/.444 with 20 home runs and 52 RBI in 567 plate appearances in 2016. He was even better the year before, finishing with an .804 OPS. Forsythe can fill the Dodgers’ obvious need at second base, but he also has experience playing third base, first base, shortstop, and corner outfield.
Forsythe is entering the second year of his two-year, $10.25 million contract extension with the Rays. He’ll earn $5.75 million in 2017 and his controlling team has an $8.5 million club option with a $1 million buyout for the 2018 season.