Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado smacked a first-inning double off Rangers right-hander Colby Lewis on Wednesday evening in Arlington, Texas, extending his hitting streak to 27 games and tying Michael Cuddyer for the longest hitting streak in the 21-year history of the Rockies franchise.
(Cuddyer set his 27-game mark in 2013).
Arenado, a budding star at age 23, is now batting .329 with an .894 OPS in 36 games this season while offering elite-level defense at third base. According to MLB.com’s Thomas Harding, the last time someone 23 or younger had a hitting streak this long was in 2003, when Albert Pujols hit in 30 straight games for the Cardinals. Here is Arenado’s record-tying double from Wednesday …
Joe DiMaggio has the longest hitting streak in major league history at 56 games. He set that in 1941.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.