Richard Justice of MLB.com reports that, unless the Mets are allowed to hold on to their otherwise unprotected 11th pick in the draft, they have “zero interest” in signing Michael Bourn. In addition, Justice makes two good points:
1. Why in the heck would a team in the Mets position want to pay for Bourn anyway; and
2. He details how the new compensation system came about that has the Mets in the current situation they’re in.
As for the first one hey, it’s the Mets’ money so who cares. Bourn would improve them, but probably wouldn’t be worth his contract come the time that they’re legitimately competitive.
The second point is more interesting, inasmuch as the whole idea of qualifying offers and compensation was approved by the players as part of a larger mechanism in which teams were limited in how much money they could spend on the draft. The players freely went along with the plan that, in effect, screws amateur players. Not that’s biting some of them in the butt.
The Reds announced on Thursday that the protective netting at Great American Ball Park will be extended to the end of each dugout in time for Opening Day next season. The press release notes that the current netting meets Major League Baseball’s guidelines and the new netting will go beyond those standards.
The netting “debate” came back on Wednesday when a young fan was struck in the face by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium. The Yankees have done about the bare minimum in installing protective netting, which rightly earned them criticism. Brian Dozier, Todd Frazier, and Didi Gregorius each said yesterday that the netting should be extended. Other teams and Major League Baseball in general received criticism. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports, for example, said the relative lack of action on MLB’s part is “morally repugnant.”
Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer notes that the Reds had already had this idea prior to Wednesday’s incident at Yankee Stadium.
Orioles third baseman Manny Machado will become eligible for free agency after the 2018 season and is likely to get a windfall. The club, however, isn’t expected to pursue trading their star at the hot corner this offseason, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
Machado, 25, has been one of baseball’s best players since debuting in 2012. He had a slow start to the 2017 season, seeing his OPS nearly drop below .700 in early July, but a strong second half has made his overall numbers more than respectable. Machado is batting .264/.318/.484 with 32 home runs and 92 RBI in 651 plate appearances while playing Gold Glove-caliber defense at third base.
Just because the Orioles don’t plan to move Machado this offseason doesn’t mean they won’t try to recoup some value ahead of next year’s non-waiver trade deadline. According to Heyman, a person involved with the Orioles said, “It would take us 35 years to find another player like him.”