Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports that the Marlins have “initiated” talks toward a contract extension with second baseman Dan Uggla.
Sadly, it doesn’t mean much. Jackson says that the Fish are only willing to fork over about $30 million on a three-year pact, which is far less than what Uggla and his agent are seeking in both years and total cash.
The 30-year-old second baseman hit a game-tying home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of Saturday’s 5-4 extra-innings victory over the Cardinals. In fact, he’s hit at least 30 home runs in each of the last three seasons and is cruising right toward that number this year with 25 dingers through 403 at-bats.
While not great, Uggla isn’t as awful defensively as some people think and he consistently posts strong power numbers at a position where such things are scarce. He has one more year of salary arbitration, but then it sounds like he might need to head elsewhere. There will be no shortage of interest if he does reach the free agent market.
The Cubs’ defense — or lack thereof this year — has been a topic of conversation as it could help explain why the team hasn’t played at the elite level it played at last year.
Manager Joe Maddon tried to go into detail about that but ended up channeling his inner Rex Ryan. Via CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney.
If, in the future, Joe Ross ever complains about a lack of run support, point to his first four starts of the 2017 season.
Ross started on April 19 in Atlanta against the Braves, on April 25 in Colorado against the Rockies, on April 30 at home against the Mets, and on May 23 at home against the Mariners. In those games, the Nats’ offense scored 14, 15, 23, and 10 runs respectively for a total of 62 runs, or an average of 15.5 per start. Ross was the pitcher of record for seven, eight, 10, and 10 runs for a total of 35 runs (8.75 runs per start), which would still make him the major league leader in run support by that restrictive standard.
Among qualified starters — Ross did not qualify — entering Tuesday’s action, the Rockies’ Antonio Senzatela led the way according to ESPN, averaging 7.11 runs of support in nine starts. The Rockies scored double-digit runs in only three of those starts, oddly enough.
Per the Nationals, the 62 runs of support for Ross is a major league record in a pitcher’s first four starts of a season.