This makes me a little sad. Mookie Wilson has a book coming out and in it he slams the Mets for the way they handled his removal as the team’s first base coach and his shift into being a roving instructor/team ambassador. From the New York Post:
It’s sad to admit this, but I have basically become a hood ornament for the Mets,” Wilson writes in “Mookie: Life, Baseball and the ’86 Mets” (Penguin Group USA). “I have no decision-making role at all in my job description. I would have liked an explanation as to why I was moved from first base coach to the ambassadorship, but none was ever given.
Wilson notes that jobs in baseball are temporary at best, but he doesn’t like that he was never given an explanation for the move. Of course, he still works for the team. Which either means that his feelings of being taken for granted aren’t so bad. Or it could mean that Wilson is kind of hard up and has no choice but to accept the $40,000 a year job the Mets have given him.
No matter what the explanation, it suggests an unfortunate set of circumstances.
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.