Andrew Bailey is expected to take a big step in his recovery from a strained forearm when he faces live hitters for the first time tomorrow.
Jane Lee of MLB.com reports that the A’s closer has completed “a large handful of successful bullpen sessions” and will be asked to face live hitters twice before potentially being cleared for a minor-league rehab assignment.
Incidentally, does “a large handful” of something imply more than five? Or does it just mean four or five while “a small handful” means two or three?
And if “a large handful” means more than five, then could “a giant handful” mean, like, 50? After all, we’re talking about bullpen sessions rather than something that can physically be held in a hand, so in theory there could be “an infinitely massive handful” that fits billions of bullpen sessions. That pitcher would probably need Tommy John surgery after like the first 10 million bullpen sessions, though.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.