Miguel Cairo is retiring after a 17-year career, but he’s staying with the Reds and moving into the front office as a special assistant to general manager Walt Jocketty.
That makes sense, because Cairo was seemingly beloved by every manager and general manager he ever played for, which is how you play 17 seasons in the majors while hitting .264 with a .675 OPS despite not having the range to even play shortstop.
Cairo had two of his best seasons for the Reds in 2010 and 2011, topping a .725 OPS in back-to-back years for the only time, but he hit just .187 last season at age 38.
Considering his limitations as a player 17 seasons, 4,392 plate appearances, and $10 million in earnings was a helluva career for Cairo.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.