Tim Brown from Yahoo! and Marc Carig from the Star-Ledger both report that Casey Close, the agent for Derek Jeter, is denying that Jeter is asking for $25 million a year over six years. Close:
“The recently rumored terms of our contract extension are simply inaccurate.”
I accept that. But what I want to know — and what isn’t clear from this denial — is whether Jeter was ever asking for that. Because if he was asking for such a thing at the outset, it would go a long way towards explaining why this negotiation has gotten into the mess that it’s in. A denial of current status tells us very little.
If Jeter was never asking for that, then or now, then Bill Madden has quite possibly been taken for a ride by a source. If he was asking that or something close to it, then Casey Close is trying to take us all for a ride.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.