UPDATE: Holy schnikes! Jim Riggleman resigned right after the game.
Washington just beat Seattle 1-0, with a walkoff sac fly — the most exciting walkoff in all of baseball! — to win it. That’s a sweep of the Mariners. The most mind-boggling thing about it is that the sweep comes even though Mariners’ starters allowed a mere one earned run in 21 innings of work in the series. Talk about tough luck. Or being opportunistic. Or simply strange crap happening. Pick one, because they all apply.
Today’s win was the Nats’ 11th in their last 12 games. They’re a game over .500 and are easily playing their best baseball in years. Possibly their best baseball since coming down from Montreal.
Nats fever: catch it!
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.