Miguel Tejada joins 300-homer club

8 Comments

Miguel Tejada took Ted Lilly deep Wednesday night to become the 129th player in major league history to reach 300 homers.
It was Tejada’s eighth homer in 194 at-bats since the Padres picked him up prior to the trade deadline. He hit just seven in 401 at-bats for the Orioles over the first four months of the season.
Tejada ranks third all-time for homers as a shortstop with 289. Only Cal Ripken (345) and Alex Rodriguez (344) have hit more. Ernie Banks is fourth at 277.
Tejada is also third on the all-time list for homers by a player who spent the bulk of his career as a shortstop. A-Rod, of course, tops that one, with 608 homers to date, but he’ll probably finish his career with more games at third than at short. If that’s the case, only Ripken, with 431 homers, would have more than Tejada. Robin Yount is fourth at 251, followed by Jose Valentin (249), Vern Stephens (247), Derek Jeter (234) and Nomar Garciaparra (229).
Those will be interesting facts in building a Cooperstown case for Tejada someday. He’s never really seemed like a Hall of Famer, but by the time he’s eligible, he’ll rank second or third all-time for homers by a shortstop and somewhere between fifth and seventh in RBI (depending on how one wants to rank A-Rod and whether Jeter passes him). He also won an MVP award, and he amassed a very impressive consecutive games streak (he played in 162 games in six straight seasons). I don’t think he belongs, but there’s an argument to be made.

Diamondbacks sign Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $2.75 million deal

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 21:  Fernando Rodney #56 of the Miami Marlins pitches during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on August 21, 2016 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***
Getty Images
Leave a comment

Confirming a report from Tuesday, the Diamondbacks officially signed right-hander Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $2.75 million contract on Friday. The 39-year-old stands to receive up to $4 million in incentives, per Jack MacGruder of FanRag Sports, with $250,000 kicking in when the veteran reaches 40, 50 and 60 appearances and $500,000 if he reaches 70.

Rodney came three games shy of the 70-appearance mark in 2016 during back-to-back stints with the Padres and Marlins. He put up a cumulative 3.44 ERA on the year, which effectively disguised the extreme split during his performances in San Diego and Miami. The Diamondbacks aren’t anywhere close to contending in 2017, but Rodney should stabilize the back end of their bullpen while providing Arizona GM Mike Hazen with a potential trade chip during next year’s deadline.

Hazen issued a statement following the signing:

With Fernando, we’re getting an established Major League closer and a veteran presence in the bullpen. It is helpful to have someone with his experience on the back end to slow the game down and get the final three outs.

Cardinals, Dexter Fowler agree to a five-year, $82 million deal

CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 02:  Dexter Fowler #24 of the Chicago Cubs reacts during the seventh inning against the Cleveland Indians in Game Seven of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field on November 2, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Getty Images
10 Comments

The Cardinals have officially signed outfielder Dexter Fowler to a five-year, $82.5 million contract. Fowler will also get a full no-trade clause.

The Cardinals gave Fowler a bigger deal than many speculated he’d get, as some reports predicted he’d get something in the $52-72 million range. His skills, however — he’s a fantastic leadoff hitter who plays a premium defensive position — definitely earned him some major dough. Fowler hit .276/.393/.447 with 13 homers, 48 RBI and 13 steals over 125 games in 2016 for the World Series champion Cubs.

For the Cardinals, this will allow Matt Carpenter to move down to the middle of the batting order and will shift Randal Grichuk to left field. It also takes a prime piece from the Cardinals’ biggest rival. For their part, earlier this offseason the Cubs signed former Cardinal center fielder Jon Jay. So that’s fun.