For now Magglio Ordonez remains with the Tigers during the ALCS, watching the games from the dugout after re-fracturing the same ankle he injured last year, but Jason Beck of MLB.com reports that he “almost certainly” will undergo another surgery.
Ordonez is scheduled to be examined by a foot specialist back in Detroit and is expected to seek a second opinion as well, but eventually going under the knife will be necessary.
Tigers trainer Kevin Rand explained that the first fracture was vertical while the second fracture is horizontal, noting that the pressure and stress of everyday activities combined with the screws already holding together his ankle caused a gradual split that Ordonez initially thought was simply soreness.
Jim Leyland told Beck that Ordonez was planning to play next season at age 38, but those plans may change with a lengthy rehab process in front of him. If he does come back and put off retirement Ordonez will likely have to settle for an incentive-laden one-year contract or perhaps even a minor-league deal. He earned $10 million this season while hitting just .255 with five homers and a .634 OPS in 92 games for the worst production of his underrated career.
Last night Robinson Cano hit a solo homer in the ninth inning of the Mariners’ loss to the Texas Rangers. It was his 22nd on the season. Though it was insignificant to the outcome of that game, it was significant to Cano: it was his 300th career homer.
While we’ve become accustomed to not caring much about home run milestones south of, say, 500, 300 homers for Cano is a big deal, as he’s only the third second baseman to cross that threshold in baseball history. The other two: Jeff Kent, at 377, and Rogers Hornsby at 301.
Cano, who turns 35 next month, has a career line of .305/.354/.495 and 1,179 RBI, 512 doubles and 33 triples to go with those bombs. He’s in his 13th big league season and still has six more years left on his deal with the Mariners. He’s averaged 24 homers a year since coming to the Mariners. While he’ll obviously trail off at some point — and while great second baseman’s have this weird habit of just suddenly falling off a cliff — it’s highly likely that he’ll finish his career as the all-time home run leader among second baseman. If he remains healthy he should also get over 3,000 hits in his career.
Cooperstown, here he comes.
Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports that the Reds have signed catcher Tucker Barnhart to a four-year contract extension. The terms: $16 million total, with a $7.5 million club option for the 2022 season that has a $500,000 buyout. He also received a $1.75 million signing bonus.
The deal buys out all three of his arbitration years — he was going to be eligible for the first time this offseason — and the first year of his potential free agency. The club option buys a second. Barnhart made $575,000 this season.
Barnhart, 26, is finishing his second season as the Reds primary catcher. This year he’s hitting .272/.349/.399 with six homers and 42 RBI in 113 games. For his career he has a line of .257/.328/.366 in 330 major league games. His real value is defensive, however. He leads the National League in caught stealing percentage and number of base stealers caught (31-for-70, 44%) and leads all players at any position in the league in defensive WAR according to Baseball-Reference.com.