Dylan Hernandez of the L.A. Times reports that Michael Young is still deciding whether to continue his career or retire. The infielder said that if he does decide to keep playing, it’s “a safe bet” that he will do so with the Dodgers. He will make his decision prior to the start of spring training.
Young joined the Dodgers at the end of August last year after being traded by the Phillies for pitcher Rob Rasmussen. Young made a few starts at various positions around the infield for the Dodgers in the final month while also serving as a pinch-hitter in games he didn’t start. Between the Phillies and Dodgers, Young posted a .279/.335/.395 line in 565 plate appearances. That’s hardly a poor line, but his defense has been sinking his value for a long time. (Baseball Reference has him with -74 fielding runs over the last five seasons, for example.) Young, now 37, would still be serviceable in a strict pinch-hitting role.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.