From beat writer Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle comes word that Buster Posey is back in the Giants’ starting lineup on Sunday afternoon against the Diamondbacks after sitting out four consecutive games because of a small fracture at the tip of his right ring finger.
Posey will play first base instead of catcher, and that may be a regular thing down the stretch as the out-of-contention defending World Series champions wrap up their disappointing 2013 regular season.
Posey suffered the fracture on Tuesday night when he was clipped on his right hand by a Madison Bumgarner pitch that bounced off the lip of home plate. The ball also ripped off the nail on his right ring finger — which sounds extremely painful.
Posey, 26, is batting .309/.377/.475 with 14 home runs and 69 RBI in 130 games for the 63-79 Giants.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.