Corey Hart will head into free agency having missed the entire season following knee surgeries and numerous setbacks. Meanwhile, the Brewers have gotten horrendous production at first base in his absence. So will Milwaukee try to bring back Hart to fill the position next season?
“We haven’t even begun to consider it yet,” assistant general manager Gord Ash told Adam McCalvy of MLB.com. “As we all know, there’s plenty of time.”
For now Hart is expected to be ready for spring training, but then again no one thought he’d miss the whole first half of this year, let alone the entire season. Hart topped an .840 OPS in each of the previous three seasons, including last year when he hit .270 with 30 homers while playing 149 games. He’s finishing up a three-year, $26.5 million deal.
Under normal circumstances the Brewers could make a qualifying offer to Hart and receive draft pick compensation if he signed elsewhere, but as McCalvy notes he’d likely just accept the one-year, $14 million contract that comes attached and stick Milwaukee with a too-big bill considering the health uncertainty.
Rick Morissey of the Chicago Sun-Times published an article on Sunday giving a bit of insight into Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein. When Epsten was younger, he dabbled in sportswriting, but quickly realized the trade wasn’t for him.
As Morissey details, when Epstein was 19 years old writing for Yale’s student newspaper, he wrote an article suggesting the school’s football coach should be fired during what would become a 3-7 season. Epstein was told during the meeting that one writer would defend the coach and one would call for his job. “It was a lesson in the way that the world of journalism sometimes works. It was an eye-opener for me. I regret it, and I’ve happily moved on.”
Epstein continued, “I realized I didn’t want to be a sportswriter when I was interning with the Orioles back in ’92, ’93, ’94. I did do a lot of media-relations stuff, and I saw that the life of a sportswriter is pretty lonely. You kind of work by yourself, sit there by yourself in the press box, go back to the hotel bar. Not to generalize.” He added, “But I really respect writing and respect sportswriters.”
He’s not wrong, and he seems to have found his calling as a front office executive. His Cubs are back in the World Series for the first time since 1945.
Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis tweeted on Sunday, “Got a little too close to [Francisco Lindor] during the celebration!! Freak accident but should be good to go by Tuesday! #cantkeepmeoutofthisgame!”
Per MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian, manager Terry Francona said Kipnis is dealing with a low ankle sprain, but he’s expected to be ready to go when the World Series begins on Tuesday. Kipnis went through fielding drills on Sunday.
Kipnis is hitting .167/.219/.367 with a pair of homers and four RBI in eight games this postseason.