Melky Cabrera wasn’t all that popular in Atlanta after his dismal, one-year stint there. He’s less popular now.
Last night, during the Giants 9-4 win over the Braves, Cabrera did some sort of pelvic thrust choppy taunting thing after Gregor Blanco hit a home run. Earlier in the game he had been making some weird gesture to the fans in left field and acted like he was going to throw balls to them but didn’t. According to Andrew Baggarly of CSN BayArea.com, he also made a hand gesture in the sixth inning when Jason Heyward didn’t try to tag from second base on a fly ball to left field.
After witnessing all of that, Chipper Jones wasn’t exactly happy:
“That’s Melky, and that’s why he’s not here anymore … He got a little happy when I think (Gregor) Blanco hit the home run. That won’t be forgotten.”
Well, he’s also not there anymore because he totally mailed in his one season with the Braves, showing up woefully out of shape and playing lazy, sloppy baseball. He got his head on straight since he went to the Royals last year, getting in good shape and playing hard and effectively ever since.
But I’m sure the Atlanta fans were giving him the business for his play in 2010. That he decided to taunt like that shows that he hasn’t completely matured since 2010. Which is a shame, because his game certainly has and he should probably let it do the talking.
The Marlins are intent on adding one of the three best relievers available on the free agent market, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports. Those three, of course, are Aroldis Chapman, Kenley Jansen, and Mark Melancon.
As Ashley noted earlier, Melancon is reportedly fielding multiple four-year offers in excess of $60 million. The price tags for Chapman and Jansen are likely to match or exceed that. The Marlins haven’t typically been eager to whip out the checkbook for free agents but with the bullpen being the name of the game in baseball these days, GM Michael Hill may feel the need to match his rivals.
The Nationals, Giants, Yankees, Cubs, and Dodgers are the teams most often linked to the “big-three” group of relievers, so it won’t be easy for the Marlins.
A.J. Ramos handled the closer’s role for the Marlins this past season and did an admirable job, saving 40 games with a 2.81 ERA and a 73/35 K/BB ratio in 64 innings. There’s no doubt, though, that Chapman, Jansen, or Melancon would represent a significant upgrade in the ninth inning.
C. Trent Rosecrans of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that Reds manager Bryan Price is likely going to use a trio of pitchers in the closer’s role: Raisel Iglesias, Tony Cingrani, and Michael Lorenzen. At RedsFest on Saturday, Price said:
I’d say right now that we have a series of guys that I’m comfortable with in the ninth inning and that would include (Raisel) Iglesias, (Tony) Cingrani and (Michael Lorenzen). Should we stay with this format – which I intend to do – all three of those guys and maybe more could have opportunities in save situations. At this point in time, there’s no defined closer. There are multiple options and I’d like to stick with the philosophy that we’re going to have our multi-inning guys, so we’re going to need multi-closers.
This seems to be part of the new bullpen zeitgeist in which managers are shying away from strictly-defined roles for their relievers. Indians manager Terry Francona’s postseason success using Andrew Miller likely had some degree of influence on Price’s willingness to go with a three-headed giant.
Iglesias started the 2016 season in the Reds’ rotation but missed two months with an injury, then moved to the bullpen in late June. Price put him in the closer’s role down the stretch in September. The right-hander overall finished the season with a 2.53 ERA and an 83/26 K/BB ratio in 78 1/3 innings.
Cingrani battled control issues in his 63 innings of work this past season, finishing with a 4.14 ERA and a 49/37 K/BB ratio. He’s left-handed, though, and gives Price some matchup flexibility in the late innings.
Lorenzen impressed in his first full season as a reliever, ending the year with a 2.88 ERA and a 48/13 K/BB ratio in 50 innings. The right-hander uses a fastball that sits around 96 MPH on average along with a cutter and slider.