Chris Davis led baseball in home runs and RBI last season with 53 and 138, respectively. He earned a $10.35 million salary for 2014 in his second year of arbitration eligibility and will enter his third and final period of arbitration eligibility next winter after which he can become a free agent.
Per MASN’s Steve Melewski, the Orioles haven’t made much of an effort yet to get their first baseman signed to an extension.
Davis said this morning there is not much happening on that front right now.
“Not that I know of and you guys are pretty good about finding things out,” Davis said. “I’m sure if anything is said, we’ll be talking about it, but those are for Scott (Boras) and Dan (Duquette). I have way too much to focus on here.”
The good news is that Davis isn’t particularly concerned about his contract situation, saying that “[the Orioles] took care” of him this off-season. Davis also understands that the Orioles may be reticent to commit to a first baseman who only has two solid seasons under his belt. Davis turns 28 on Monday and a contract extension would likely take him into his mid-30’s.
Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.
Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.
Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.
Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.
The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.
Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.
Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.