The worst part of being a baseball blogger is that I never get a chance to pile on media frenzies that go down in the other sports. Man, I would have loved to add (virtually nothing) to the Dwight Howard stuff. To the Peyton Manning stuff. To, well, whatever the hell people get all animated about in hockey. But it’s out of my bailiwick, so I really can’t.
But once in a while, a small opportunity emerges. Like, say, the single-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres issuing a press release stating their desire to trade two mascots for the suddenly out-of-work Tim Tebow:
“We know that Tim was the cause for late-game comebacks in Denver and we have our own leader of rallies, the Rally Cop. We would like to offer the Broncos the Rally Cop as well as the Grounds Crew Gorilla, winner of an MiLB Golden Bobble head last season, in exchange for Tebow,” Storm vice president and general manager Chris Jones said in the announcement.
I’m assuming he’d be a pretty good hitter. He has lots of experience in sending balls to big, open grassy parts of the field where no one can catch it.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.