Much like fellow free agent Mike Napoli, Russell Martin is staying busy on the road as he tries to land his next contract.
Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York was told by Martin’s agent, Matt Colleran, that the free agent catcher recently visited “multiple cities” to see if they would be the right fit. Colleran declined to say where he went, so they are nothing more than “mystery cities” for now, but Marchand was told by a source earlier this month that the Rangers, Mariners, Pirates and Red Sox had expressed interest.
The Yankees remain in the hunt for Martin and appear willing to give him a multi-year contract. Colleran said there’s no timetable on a decision, but that he could sign before the Winter Meetings begin next Monday. The Yankees are considering A.J. Pierzynski as a potential fallback option, but aren’t involved on Napoli.
Martin, who turns 30 in February, batted .211/.311/.403 with 21 home runs, 53 RBI and a .713 OPS this past season.
Perhaps there are a few who still miss the slope of Tal’s Hill rising from center field, but George Springer isn’t one of them. He lassoed a 403-foot fly ball from Todd Frazier in the seventh inning of Game 6, reaching nearly to the top of the wall to prevent the Yankees from gaining on the Astros’ 3-0 lead.
According to Statcast, a fly ball with an exit velocity of 103.6 MPH and a launch angle of 29 degrees lands for a home run 72% of the time. That wasn’t going to fly with the Astros, who were facing runners on first and second with one out and saw Justin Verlander‘s pitch count rapidly approaching 100.
It wasn’t long before the Yankees tried for another home run, however, and this one sailed far above the heads of all of the Astros’ outfielders. Aaron Judge lofted a 425-foot shot to left field in the eighth inning, destroying a first-pitch fastball from Brad Peacock and finally getting New York on the board.
The Yankees currently trail the Astros 4-1 in the bottom of the eighth.