Michael Young has played 10 seasons in the majors, accumulating 6,632 plate appearances in 1,492 games for the Rangers while making six All-Star teams, winning a batting title, and hitting .301/.348/.450 with 1,832 hits.
And next month he’ll play in a postseason game for the first time.
In terms of career games without a playoff appearance Young has the second-longest drought among active players, with his 1,492 games (and counting) trailing only Randy Winn at 1,704. By signing with the Yankees this offseason Winn seemed likely to break his playoff-less streak and even after being released he kept the postseason hopes alive by joining the Cardinals, but St. Louis’ second-half struggleds once again leave him home for October.
Aubrey Huff has the third-longest playoff drought at 1,462 games and has a strong chance to make the postseason with the Giants, while Mike Sweeney will probably snap his 1,450-game drought thanks to joining the Phillies as a bench bat last month. For now, here are the longest active streaks:
Randy Winn 1704
Michael Young 1492
Aubrey Huff 1462
Mike Sweeney 1450
Adam Dunn 1433
Vernon Wells 1377
Jack Wilson 1251
Brian Roberts 1183
Felipe Lopez 1131
Lyle Overbay 1122
Ernie Banks holds the all-time record with 2,528 career games and no playoff appearances.
With the Braves on the cusp of formalizing their one-year deal with Kurt Suzuki, the market for free agent catcher Matt Wieters is dwindling. ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick references an inside source that lists the Angels, Rockies and Reds as potential suitors for the 30-year-old’s services.
Wieters is coming off of an eight-year career with the Orioles. In 2016, he played through his first full year after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2014 and batted .243/.302/.409 with 17 home runs and a .711 OPS in 464 PA. A return to Baltimore in 2017 isn’t out of the question, Crasnick writes, citing some within the team that would be open to Wieters stepping into a DH role and catching platoon with Wellington Castillo. However, he also points out that the front office appears divided on the veteran catcher, and sees the Orioles as a long shot for the foreseeable future.
The Angels have already been tied to Wieters this offseason, while the Rockies and Reds don’t appear to have made any formal inquiries so far. Both could use a veteran presence behind the dish, as the Rockies are planning to platoon rookie catcher Tom Murphy with 24-year-old Tony Wolters in the spring. The Reds, meanwhile, are banking on a quick recovery for 28-year-old Devin Mesoraco, who missed most of the 2016 season after undergoing shoulder and hip surgery and forced the club to rely almost exclusively on back-up backstop Tucker Barnhart.
The Red Sox are expecting to go to an arbitration hearing with left-handed reliever Fernando Abad, per Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe. Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski said there was a “decent chance” a hearing would be necessary after countering Abad’s $2.7 million request with $2 million.
Abad, 31, pitched just 12 2/3 innings for Boston after the club acquired him from Minnesota at the trade deadline last season. The lefty earned a cumulative 3.66 ERA, 4.2 BB/9 and 7.9 SO/9 for the two teams in 2016. He received $1.25 million in 2016 and will remain under club control (through arbitration) in 2017. A $2.7 million salary would be a hefty increase for the veteran reliever, who has seen a significant decline since he put up a 1.57 ERA for the Athletics in 2014 and who has not amassed more than 0.6 fWAR in any single season to date.
While the Red Sox aren’t close to settling with Abad, Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald reports that they may be closing in on a settlement with left-handed starter Drew Pomeranz. Pomeranz filed at $5.7 million, while the Sox felt more comfortable at $3.6 million. The two are expected to meet somewhere in the middle to avoid an arbitration hearing later this winter.