We all have to change our “days since Elijah Dukes was arrested” signs back to zero:
Former Rays outfielder Elijah Dukes was arrested early Thursday after he tried to eat a plastic bag of marijuana and had marijuana blunt tucked behind his ear, police said … He faces charges of tampering with physical evidence, possession of less than 20 grams of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and driving with a cancelled, suspended or revoked license. He was also being held on two Hillsborough County warrants for driving with a suspended knowledge and operating with a suspended or revoked driver’s license.
Such a shame. He almost made it a year since his last arrest.
In other news, Dukes is 27 and, in an alternate universe, he’s anchoring the middle of the order for the two-time defending champion Rays.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.