Derek Jeter is making his farewell tour around the majors this season and one fan wanted to make sure he got his chance to say goodbye last night. It didn’t go so well.
In the bottom of the sixth inning of last night’s Yankees-Brewers game at Miller Park in Milwaukee, a young male fan jumped out of the seats behind the third base dugout and onto the field to where Jeter was standing at shortstop. The fan, who was wearing a Ryan Braun jersey, requested a hug from the Yankee Captain and was quickly taken down by security.
Jeter told Brandon Kuty of NJ.com that he wasn’t alarmed by the fan and even warned him that he was going to get in trouble. They don’t call him classy for nothing, folks.
“He was saying he wanted a hug,” the Yankees’ captain said. “I was thinking, I wasn’t gonna hug him. That was pretty much it.”
Jeter said teammates were asking if he was scared.
“If you saw his face, he wasn’t coming out there with anger,” Jeter said. “You know what I mean? So, no, I wasn’t scared.”
Jeter just stood there for a moment before walking away, seeing the rush of security guards, dressed in red coats and khaki pants.
“I told him,” Jeter said. “I said, ‘You’re going to get in trouble.’ Then he repeated that he wanted a hug. And then I said, ‘Look out.'”
I can only assume this is what happens when your friend tells you that it’s “Hug a Derek Jeter Night” at the stadium.
The Cardinals have officially signed outfielder Dexter Fowler to a five-year, $82.5 million contract. Fowler will also get a full no-trade clause.
The Cardinals gave Fowler a bigger deal than many speculated he’d get, as some reports predicted he’d get something in the $52-72 million range. His skills, however — he’s a fantastic leadoff hitter who plays a premium defensive position — definitely earned him some major dough. Fowler hit .276/.393/.447 with 13 homers, 48 RBI and 13 steals over 125 games in 2016 for the World Series champion Cubs.
For the Cardinals, this will allow Matt Carpenter to move down to the middle of the batting order and will shift Randal Grichuk to left field. It also takes a prime piece from the Cardinals’ biggest rival. For their part, earlier this offseason the Cubs signed former Cardinal center fielder Jon Jay. So that’s fun.
The Cardinals have always emphasized building from within. In the 2016-17 offseason, however, they may end up being one of the bigger free agent buyers. At least according to some informed speculation.
St. Louis is already in agreement with Dexter Fowler. But Derrick Goold and Ben Frederickson of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch write today that the Cardinals “could become more aggressive than previously believed,” with Mark Trumbo and Edwin Encarnacion as “possible pursuits.” Worth noting that separate reports alleged some interest on the part of the Cards front office in free agent third baseman Justin Turner.
The Cardinals are already losing their first round pick due to the Fowler signing, so any other top free agent won’t cost them more than the money he’s owed. And as far as money goes, the Cardinals have a great deal of it, despite being a small market team. They have a billion dollar TV deal coming online and Matt Holliday and Jaime Garcia are off the payroll now. Spending big on a free agent or three would not cripple them or anything.
Encarnacion or Trumbo would be first baseman, which wold fly in the face of the Cards’ move of Matt Carpenter to first base (and, at least as far as Encarnacion goes, would fly in the face of good defense). Getting either of them would push Carpenter back to second, displacing Kolten Wong, or over to third, displacing Jhonny Peralta. If you’re going to do that, I’d say that Turner would make more sense, but what do I know?
Either way, the Cardinals may be entering a pretty interesting phase of their offseason now. And an unfamiliar one as, quite possibly, the top free agent buyer on the market.