Rickie Weeks told Adam McCalvy of MLB.com last month that he’s “open to listening” about a contract extension and during an appearance on WSSP in Milwaukee earlier today, Brewers general manager Doug Melvin confirmed that the club is trying to get something done.
“We’re working on getting Rickie signed. He’s got a new agent, Greg Genske, who is CC Sabathia’s agent, so it’s going to be a lot tougher than his previous agent, [Lon Babby].”
“[Genske] doesn’t respond as quick. But we’ll be working on it.”
Taking a shot at Genske, eh? Off to a nice start, I see.
Weeks has struggled to stay healthy during his career, but managed to appear in a career-high 160 games this past season while batting .269/.366/.464 with 29 homers, 83 RBI and an 830 OPS. The 29-year-old second baseman is arbitration-eligible for the final time this winter before he becomes a free agent after the 2011 season. He earned $2.75 million in 2010.
Melvin has assigned assistant general manager Gord Ash with the responsibility of getting in touch with Genske and gauging his client’s asking price. The Brewers GM hopes to meet with Genske face-to-face at the winter meetings in Orlando next week. While Prince Fielder is still a near lock to test free agency after next season, they have have a much better chance of keeping Weeks for the long haul.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes will opt out of his contract shortly after the World Series concludes. Cespedes, who earned $17.5 million for the 2016 season, has two years and $47.5 million remaining on his deal which includes an opt-out clause.
That Cespedes plans to opt out isn’t surprising as he’s almost certain to get a better contract entering a weak free agent market. He hit a terrific .280/.354/.530 with 31 home runs and 86 RBI in 543 plate appearances for the Mets this past season.
It remains to be seen how the Mets will deal with potentially losing Cespedes. They can pick up a $13 million club option for Jay Bruce, but he performed terribly after joining the Mets in a trade from the Reds. The Mets could also go after free agents Jose Bautista or Mark Trumbo. Curtis Granderson and Michael Conforto will handle the other two outfield positions.
Major League Baseball announced on Wednesday that former Red Sox DH David Ortiz and Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant won the 2016 Hank Aaron Award in their respective leagues.
Ortiz, 40, flourished in his final season, batting .315/.401/.620 with 38 home runs and 127 RBI in 626 plate appearances during the regular season. His .620 slugging percentage, 1.021 OPS, and 48 doubles led the majors while his 127 RBI led the American League. Ortiz also won the Hank Aaron Award back in 2005.
Bryant, 24, is the likely winner of the National League Most Valuable Player Award as well. He hit .292/.385/.554 with 39 home runs and 102 RBI over 699 plate appearances. He also led the league by scoring 121 runs. Bryant is the first Cub to win the Hank Aaron Award since Aramis Ramirez in 2008.
Last year’s winners in the AL and NL, respectively, were Josh Donaldson and Bryce Harper.