Carlos Beltran told Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News that he “would consider” re-signing with the Giants this offseason “because the pitching is unbelievable” and he’s enjoyed his time in San Francisco, but added that he’d want assurances the team would work to improve the offense around him.
San Francisco ranks dead last among NL teams with 514 runs, which is 41 runs fewer than the next-to-last Padres and 184 runs fewer than the league-leading Reds.
Beltran was acquired at midseason specifically to address the lineup’s lack of punch and has certainly done his part by hitting .320 with a .905 OPS, but he’s also missed 14 of 45 games since the trade with injuries.
It may be a moot point, of course, as Baggarly notes that the Giants’ payroll situation makes re-signing Beltran “a remote possibility” in large part because they’re still on the hook for big salaries to Aaron Rowand and Barry Zito. All of which is why the decision to trade top prospect Zack Wheeler for two months of the impending free agent was such a risky move for the Giants.
The Kansas City Star has covered the death of Yordano Ventura and its aftermath in a thorough, thoughtful, respectful and admirable fashion and it has all been compelling to read, even if it’s often been difficult to read. Their latest story may be the most difficult, though it is nonetheless essential.
It covers the final year of Ventura’s life which, sadly, was tumultuous. He had become estranged from his family. He was married to a woman who, at the time of the ceremony, was still married to her first husband and whose family, allegedly, later made threats against Ventura that we’re only now learning about. This includes allegations of armed men accosting Ventura at his home near the Royals spring training facility a year ago. An incident which led to him missing time due to “flulike symptoms,” but which, in reality, caused him considerable mental distress. He was again threatened, it is claimed, in Kansas City during the season. There is also an allegation that Ventura attempted suicide via an overdose of Benadryl, though that is disputed.
Beyond that, there is an arc to the end of Ventura’s life which sounds unfortunately familiar. It’s a story of a young man whose life changed dramatically in a very, very short period of time and who struggled at times to process the changes. Were it not for a fateful drive on a dark and winding road one night in late January, they all could’ve been things that, as his career matured, he could look back on as learning experiences. Now that he’s gone, however, they form the final, tragic chapter.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.