Report: Orioles place ex-closer Mike Gonzalez on waivers

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They’re revocable waivers, so it’s far from a given that Mike Gonzalez is on the move. Nonetheless, one wonders if the Orioles would simply let him go if he’s claimed.
Gonzalez was given a two-year, $12 million contract last winter to step in as the Orioles’ closer. However, he went on to struggle in spring training and then blow two of his first three save chances before landing on the DL with a shoulder injury. He missed nearly 3 1/2 months.
Since returning in late July, Gonzalez has allowed two runs and six hits over nine innings. He’s struck out five and walked three. His fastball velocity, which was down in March and April, is back in its usual 91-94 mph range.
So, it certainly seems now that Gonzalez is back to being a valuable reliever. Still, if the Orioles could get out from the approx. $1.7 million he’s owed over the rest of this year and the $6 million he’s make next year, they might be willing to let him go for nothing.
The Yankees and Red Sox are among the teams that could potentially be willing to take on that kind of obligation for a setup man. Though if the Red Sox went that route, it’d seem to rule out any chance they’d have of escaping a luxury-tax payment at season’s end.

Yankee Stadium losing 2,100 seats, gaining party decks and stuff in offseason renovation

Yankee Stadium
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The Yankees just released a statement saying that Yankee Stadium will be undergoing “enhancements” this offseason. The enhancements include:

  • The Sunrun Kids Clubhouse, which is basically one of those “kids run around and climb on crap play areas” not unlike those you see in the middle of shopping malls. Except, of course, it’s baseball-themed. Parents of little ones will likely appreciate that. People without kids will likely watch from afar, horrified, and will check their bags for hand sanitizer before getting anywhere near it. As someone who has been on both sides of that interaction, it’s all good. It’s how it should be for all involved;
  • The MasterCard Batter’s Eye Deck which is, not surprisingly, an outdoor gathering space/bar in center field near the batter’s eye;
  • Bullpen landings which are gathering spaces/bars near the bullpens;
  • The AT&T Sports Lounge at Section 134 on the Field Level. It’s a bar with big screen TVs showing the game that is going on just outside the bar; and
  • Budweiser Party Decks at Sections 311 and 328. Which are hopefully explanatory.

Artist’s renderings here.

The park will lose around 2,000 seats to make space for these additions, but will likely make up for that and then some with added revenue from all of the Yankees fans partying on. In decks.

Jon Lester to start Game 1 for the Cubs

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - OCTOBER 07:  Jon Lester #34 of the Chicago Cubs pitches in the sixth inning against the San Francisco Giants at Wrigley Field on October 7, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
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No surprise here: the Cubs have just named Jon Lester their Game 1 World Series starter.

Lester has allowed two earned runs in 21 innings over three starts this postseason and was the co-MVP in the NLCS. Lester will face off against Indians ace Corey Kluber.

On the season Lester went 19-5 with a 2.44 ERA and notched 197 Ks against 52 walks in 202.2 innings.