I ran into a cool guy selling cool things yesterday. The guy: Sean Kane, an artist from Ontario, who takes vintage baseball gloves and paints the most wonderful things on them. He had a couple of models with him, but my favorite was the Jackie Robinson number he had with him:
He does these in acrylics, and it takes him a good while. So, not surprisingly, they’re not cheap — we’re talking over a thousand bucks for some of them. But they are certainly unique, cool and smart too. For example, he painted Ernie Banks on an old-style two-fingered glove for “let’s play two.” Kinda dig that. Go check out Sean’s wares and his FAQ if this sort of thing jazzes you.
The Winter Meetings: everyone comes here for the trades and the signings, but there are cool things like this around every corner.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.