Milwaukee skipping Zack Greinke’s turn in the rotation last week so he could “recharge his batteries” worked out pretty well, as Greinke returned last night with seven innings of one-run ball in what may be his final Brewers start.
Afterward he declined to discuss the specifics of any contract extension talks, although he did apologize to reporters for doing so and talked pretty openly about his feelings surrounding potentially pitching his last game in a Brewers uniform.
Here’s some of what he said, via Todd Rosiak of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
It’s kind of fun playing here and we’ve got a lot of good players. We’re just not pulling out wins at the moment, which is disappointing. … I really don’t want to think about a different team when I’m on this team. … Obviously something could happen, but I enjoy playing here. I don’t really look forward to being traded from this place, but it could happen. That’s just baseball. I won’t take it personal if it happens. They’ve got to do what they’ve got to do what’s best for the organzation.
Every indication is that the Brewers will trade Greinke by July 31 if they aren’t able to work out a long-term extension and at this point there’s no real indication that extension talks have progressed very far.
Greinke’s next scheduled start is Sunday against the Nationals at Miller Park and the trade deadline is about 48 hours later.
The Phillies have signed free agent outfielder Michael Saunders.
Saunders was an All-Star in 2016 due to his wonderful start, but he cratered in the second half of the season. Overall is numbers looked good — he hit 24 homers and posted a line of .253/.338/.478, but his second half line was .178/.282/.357 in 58 games. He’s not the best defender around either.
The Phillies could use him, however, and if he has another red hot first half, there’s a decent chance they could flip him if they wanted to.
It was first reported that the Blue Jays and Jose Bautista were close to a deal last night. Now Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is near completion. It will likely a two-year contract in the $35-40 million range.
Bautista had a tough 2016, hitting .234/.366/.452 with 22 home runs and 69 RBI, and some clubs likely considered a long-term deal for the 36-year-old too risky, this leading to the relative lack of reported interest in Bautista by other clubs. But back-to-back ALCS appearances by the Jays and the success and popularity Bautista has experienced in Toronto make his re-signing there a pretty sensible move for all involved.
The Jays, who already lost Edwin Encarnacion to free agency, get their slugger back on a short term deal. Unlike anyone else, they don’t have to give up the draft pick attached to him via the qualifying offer. Bautista, in turn, will make, on average, more than he would’ve made on the qualifying offer if he would’ve accepted it and a raise over the $14 million he made in 2016.