Since announcing last week that he planned to shave his head for charity Joe Maddon has talked “more than 20 players” into joining him to raise money for pediatric cancer research, according to Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Included in the bunch are James Shields, Sam Fuld, Matt Moore, and Matt Joyce, and Maddon gave a glimpse into the sales pitch he used to convince them:
It’s like Demi Moore in “GI Jane” – if you’re good-looking, you’re good-looking. Those of us who are not, we have something to be concerned with.
Maddon also said he might stick with the shaved-head look for a while and “just paint the top of my head black or brown or something.” And he might also hold “hat-less workouts” so everyone learns how to properly apply sunblock. Seriously.
Incidentally, when “GI Jane” came out in 1997 … Matt Moore was eight years old.
Free agent first baseman Edwin Espinal has signed a minor league deal with the Tigers, the infielder announced Saturday. The move has yet to be confirmed by the team.
Espinal, 23, capped a seven-year run with the Pirates’ minor league affiliates in 2017. He split his season between Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis, batting a cumulative .294/.327/.447 with 15 home runs and 31 doubles in 532 plate appearances. While he’s raked at nearly every level so far, he also profiles well on defense, and rounded off his 2017 performance with a perfect fielding percentage, 208 putouts and a Gold Glove award.
Espinal is untested at the major league level and it’s not yet clear if he’ll make the jump in 2018. He showed some positional versatility during his time in the minors, however, and could take reps at third base or DH if necessary. The Tigers are reportedly on the lookout for pitching depth and left-handed bats — two bills the right-handed Espinal doesn’t fit — and presumably have a lot of moves left to make this winter.