The Yankees have signed supplemental first-round pick Dante Bichette Jr., according to Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger. He receives a signing bonus of $750,000 and will join the GCL Yankees when their season begins Monday.
Bichette, 18, was selected 51st overall in this month’s First-Year Player Draft. The Yankees received the pick as compensation after Javier Vazquez signed with the Marlins during the offseason. It was their highest selection in the draft.
Highly regarded for his power potential from the right side of the plate, Baseball America ranked Bichette as the 108th best player in this year’s draft class. Though he was drafted as a third baseman, many expect he will eventually end up in the outfield.
You never know with a guy this young, but at least Bichette has the bloodlines in his favor. His father Dante had a .299 batting average, 1,906 hits and 274 home runs over 14 major league seasons between the Rockies, Angels, Red Sox, Brewers and Reds.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are among the teams that have contacted the Reds about outfielder Jay Bruce. The Mariners enter play Wednesday 51-48, six games out of first place in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot. Adding an impact bat like Bruce could help in their effort to reach the postseason.
Norichika Aoki and Seth Smith have handled the bulk of the playing time in left field. While Smith has hit well, Aoki has not. Bruce came into Wednesday’s game against the Giants batting .271/.324/.567 with 24 home runs and a league-best 78 RBI.
Bruce can become a free agent after the season if his controlling team declines his $13 million club option for the 2017 season by paying him a $1 million buyout. If he’s traded mid-season, his new team won’t be able to make him a qualifying offer, so the club option may be more enticing than it looks at first glance.
A third-inning two-run home run by Adam Rosales off of R.A. Dickey put the Padres up 2-0, but it also helped the Padres tie a National League record. The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, matching the 1998 Braves, the 1994 Tigers, and the 1941 Yankees. The major league record is 27, set by the 2002 Rangers.
The Padres hit three in total on Wednesday in an 8-4 victory against the Blue Jays. One of those dingers was an eighth-inning solo shot by rookie Alex Dickerson, who has now homered in four consecutive games himself. The one he hit on Monday is worth watching, as it got into the upper deck at the Rogers Centre.
As the Padres recently traded Melvin Upton, Jr. to the Jays, Dickerson is likely going to see regular playing time. That’s especially true if he keeps hitting like this.