Peter Gammons made some headlines in Chicago over the weekend by saying during a local radio interview that Wrigley Field is “a dump” that needs renovating like “what the Boston owners did with Fenway Park.”
Ozzie Guillen, who has been a vocal critic of Wrigley Field in the past, was asked what he thought of Gammons’ comments and the White Sox manager jokingly made it clear that he agrees:
He did? Good for you, Peter. Finally, somebody else out-tagged me. Why do you say that, Peter? You have only been to Wrigley Field for a few days. You’re not at Wrigley Field all of the time. That’s why Peter is one of the brightest men in baseball.
Wrigley Field is like a monument, and we have to respect that and we have to love that. A lot of people come to Chicago and want to take the tourist buses. They want to go by Wrigley Field. That’s the reason why. The owners would rather spend $200 million in players than [renovate]. People will show up to Wrigley Field. They like going there and all the things they can do there before and after the games
That qualifies as about as diplomatic as Guillen is ever going to get and he even called it “beautiful Wrigley Field” and “a historic ballpark” when discussing Derek Jeter’s chances of reaching 3,000 hits while in Chicago.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.