Reports that the Phillies are strongly pursuing free agent third base Aramis Ramirez apparently have some legs, because according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com they’re “actively trying to move” incumbent third baseman Placido Polanco.
Polanco still has $7.25 million remaining on a three-year, $18 million contract that was widely panned at the time and is coming off a career-worst season in which he missed 40 games with various injuries. He’s also 36 years old, so the Phillies would likely have to eat at least some of his salary and take back a marginal prospect to get a deal done.
From a purely on-field standpoint keeping Polanco around in a utility role would make sense even after signing Ramirez, but obviously a $7.25 million part-time player is a tough fit for even the Phillies’ massive payroll.
Manager Robin Ventura’s contract with the White Sox expires after the season, but the club will offer him a new contract if he wants to stay in Chicago, Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports.
Ventura’s five seasons at the helm of the White Sox haven’t gone well. The club has crossed the 80-win threshold only once, in his first season back in 2012. Entering the final five games of the season, Ventura has a 373-432 record (463) overall.
The White Sox have also had a handful of controversies under Ventura’s watch, including the fiasco concerning Adam LaRoche and his son Drake, as well as Chris Sale‘s displeasure with wearing retro uniforms. Ventura is not exactly a fan favorite, either. It’s interesting that the White Sox want to keep him around, to say the least.
Carrie Muskat of MLB.com just tweeted that the Cubs will soon announce a five-year contract extension for president Theo Epstein. Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that it’s worth in excess of $50 million.
He’s earned it. When he took over the Cubs in October, 2011 the Cubs were a last place team with an aging roster and a front office that was several years behind the state of the art in every conceivable way. Last year the Cubs made the playoffs and this year they are baseball’s best team by a large margin and the franchise looks poised to continue its success for some time.
So, yeah, I’d say locking Theo up is a good idea.