Just ask people who like dog races, cockfights and NFL football: a little friendly wagering can turn something totally awful into a lot of fun! That’s how we’re approaching the Home Run Derby, anyway. And it’s less wagering than it is a contest, but at least picking a dog in this race will give you a reason to watch it.
Drew has the details here, which is also where you can make your entry. The winner gets a free post on HBT on any (vaguely baseball-related) topic you want. I mean, sure, we’ll scrub out all of your F-bombs, 9/11 conspiracy theories and Star Trek slash fiction, but otherwise the post is yours if you win it.
So click over and make an entry now, campers. The more of you who enter, the harder it will be for Drew to sift through and find the winners, and that makes it fun for all of us. Except Drew!
Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Orioles “are moving aggressively on Manny Machado trade talks and now believe they can trade him by the end of the week.” There are reportedly “strong offers” for Machado from both the White Sox, per Ken Rosenthal, and the Cardinals, per Nightengale. The Giants, Red Sox, Phillies, and Yankees are also reportedly involved in talks, though it does seem unlikely that the O’s would trade Machado to a division rival.
Machado, 25, is a guy around which a team could build a franchise. The Orioles, however, seem resigned to the notion that they will not be able to sign him to a long term contract once he hits free agency a year from now. If they do deal him, it would not be terribly shocking to see the O’s just go all-in with a full rebuild, putting relievers Brad Brach and Zach Britton and outfielder Adam Jones on the market, given that they too can become free agents following the 2018 season.
Machado had a down 2017, hitting .259/.310/.471, but still hit 33 homers and drove in 95 runs. In the two years prior he posted OPSs of .876 and .861. As such, the price for a team to acquire him will be high, even if he’s entering his walk year.