And to the MLBPA, too, for signing away draftees rights in the last CBA.
There’s a good chance this is all just posturing ahead of the Friday 5 p.m. deadline, but several sources are reporting that the Marlins have ended negotiations with No. 9 overall pick Andrew Heaney out of Oklahoma State. The reasoning; Heaney appears to be holding out for the MLB produced slot value of his pick, $2.8 million, while the Marlins are offering less.
So, Heaney is left with the choice of taking less money than MLB decided he was worth where he was picked or going back to school or pitching in indy ball and risking losing a couple of million dollars if he gets hurt.
And this is where major league teams have way too much leverage right now; the Marlins can lowball Heaney knowing that they’ll be compensated with the 10th (or 11th or 12th) pick in next year’s draft if they don’t sign him.
The Marlins aren’t lacking for funds, and what they’re doing now is probably all part of the negotiating process. But if the reports are true, Heaney isn’t asking for anything excessive. This isn’t a Mark Appel situation, where the pitcher wants more than the team can offer. It’s simply a team wielding more power than it should have been given in the first place.
Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies agreed to a $200 million, 30-year lease with the Metropolitan Baseball Stadium District, which is the state division that owns Coors Field. As part of the deal, the Rockies will lease and develop a plot of land south of the stadium, which will cost the team $125 million for 99 years.
As Groke points out, had the Rockies not reached a deal by Thursday, March 30, the lease would have rolled over for five more years.
Rockies owner Dick Monfort issued a statement, saying, “We are proud that Coors Field will continue to be a vital part of a vibrant city, drawing fans from near and far and making our Colorado residents proud.”
The Rockies moved into Coors Field in 1995. It is the National League’s third oldest stadium. In that span of time, the Rockies have made the playoffs three times, the last coming in 2009 when they lost in the NLDS to the Phillies. The Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox.
Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki is entering his 25th season as a professional baseball player and his 17th in the major leagues. The 43-year-old is potentially under contract through the 2018 season if the Marlins choose to pick up his club option.
Few players are able to continue their careers into their mid-40’s. No surprise, Suzuki is the oldest position player in baseball. Only Braves pitcher Bartolo Colon, is older, and only by 51 days. Suzuki, however, wants to play until he’s 50 years old, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports.
“I’m not joking when I say it,” Suzuki said. He continued, “Nobody knows what the future holds. But the way I feel, how I’m thinking, I feel like nothing can stop me from doing it. When you retire from baseball, you have until the day you die to rest.”
When asked about what will happen when Suzuki finally does decide to retire, Suzuki responded, “I think I’ll just die.”
Last season, Suzuki showed he still has plenty left in the tank. He hit .291/.354/.376 with 21 extra-base hits, 48 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 365 plate appearances. If the Marlins’ outfielders stay healthy, Suzuki won’t be starting many games in 2017. He started in right field frequently during the second half last year, filling in for the injured Giancarlo Stanton.