Vlad Guerrero has been hitting the ball well lately, leading the charge as the Orioles have done a damn fine job of playing spoiler in the American League wild card race. Also, as Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun points out, he’s three hits behind Julio Franco for the record of most hits for a player from the Dominican Republic.
It’s enough to make the guy want to play a couple more years:
“I feel I can play two or three more years,” he said. “And I just need to work a little harder this offseason when I go to the Dominican and see what happens.”
He’s on a one-year deal with Baltimore. Overall he’s hitting .292/.320/.421 with 13 homers. The recent surge notwithstanding, it’s hard for anyone to justify giving a guy like that with no defensive value whatsoever a contract. I’m sure someone will because of the name, the fact that he’s well-liked within the game and the chance, however slight, that he still has a productive year in him. But it’s certainly not a given.
In a mailbag published on Thursday, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post says he has spoken with Arenado and his agent from the Wasserman Media Group. Based on that, he says the Rockies have not broached the subject of a contract extension with the All-Star third baseman.
Arenado will enter his second of four years of arbitration eligibility after earning $5 million for the 2016 season. He’s due to a hefty pay raise and will continue on that track into free agency after the 2019 season. It may behoove the Rockies to get extension talks started sooner rather than later. Saunders, however, thinks that Arenado wants to see if the Rockies become contenders in the next two seasons before signing the dotted line.
Arenado, 25, enters Thursday’s action batting .293/.361/.567 with 40 home runs, 130 RBI, and 112 runs scored in 678 plate appearances. His 40 homers is best in the National League and the 130 RBI are best in the majors. He has an argument for winning the National League Most Valauble Player Award.
Agent Scott Boras eulogized client Jose Fernandez at his funeral on Thursday. Boras couldn’t even get through the first sentence without breaking down in tears. It was difficult to watch without wanting to sob myself, but it was a touching eulogy that spoke for a lot of people who were fond of Fernandez.