Fifteen years ago today David Wells threw a perfect game against the Twins at Yankee Stadium. And then just to add to the drama Wells claimed afterward that he was “half-drunk” for the day game after partying with the cast of Saturday Night Live the night before.
Minnesota’s starter that day was LaTroy Hawkins, who’s amazingly still pitching in the majors for the Mets. And the only other still-active player to appear in the game is Derek Jeter.
I was 15 years old at the time and my beloved Twins were in the midst of their sixth consecutive losing season, so after initially rooting for them to beat the mighty Yankees by the end of the game I recall actually rooting for Wells to make history.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.