Red Sox minor leaguer Drake Britton is in his first major league camp. Or, I should say, he was. Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston reports:
Boston Red Sox pitcher Drake Britton, a 23-year-old in his first big-league camp, was arrested on misdemeanor charges of reckless driving, driving under the influence, and property damage, according to the Lee County Sheriff’s office.
Britton earned that arrest: he was clocked at 111 miles per hour in a 45 zone. Then he hopped a curb, went off the road, broke down a barbed wire fence and tried to drive into the woods. When he was finally stopped he was asked for his license and handed the officer his debit card.
In addition to threatening the lives of others and risking his own, Britton screwed himself royal. He was supposed to stay in big league camp for a few more appearances and was slated to be in the Triple-A rotation. Now he’s been optioned to Double-A Portland.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Orioles “are moving aggressively on Manny Machado trade talks and now believe they can trade him by the end of the week.” There are reportedly “strong offers” for Machado from both the White Sox, per Ken Rosenthal, and the Cardinals, per Nightengale. The Giants, Red Sox, Phillies, and Yankees are also reportedly involved in talks, though it does seem unlikely that the O’s would trade Machado to a division rival.
Machado, 25, is a guy around which a team could build a franchise. The Orioles, however, seem resigned to the notion that they will not be able to sign him to a long term contract once he hits free agency a year from now. If they do deal him, it would not be terribly shocking to see the O’s just go all-in with a full rebuild, putting relievers Brad Brach and Zach Britton and outfielder Adam Jones on the market, given that they too can become free agents following the 2018 season.
Machado had a down 2017, hitting .259/.310/.471, but still hit 33 homers and drove in 95 runs. In the two years prior he posted OPSs of .876 and .861. As such, the price for a team to acquire him will be high, even if he’s entering his walk year.