According to Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the Pirates have agreed to terms with first-round pick Reese McGuire.
McGuire, a high school catcher out of Washington, was selected 14th overall in this month’s First-Year Player Draft. Sawchik reports that he’s slated to receive a bonus around $2.56 million, which is the slot value for the pick.
While McGuire is in the fold, the Pirates have yet to sign No. 9 overall pick Austin Meadows. The 18-year-old outfielder was a compensation pick for failing to sign right-hander Mark Appel when they selected him No. 8 overall in last year’s draft. Appel, who went No. 1 overall this year, is reportedly close to an agreement with the Astros.
Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.
The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.
Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.
Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.
Angels first baseman Luis Valbuena will miss the next four to six weeks with a strained right hamstring, Pedro Moura of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Valbuena, 31, signed a two-year, $15 million contract with the Angels in January and was on track to get the lion’s share of the playing time at first base. While he’s out, however, C.J. Cron will handle first base on a regular basis. When Valbeuna returns, the two will likely form a platoon.
Last year with the Astros, Valbuena hit a solid .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances.