Bobby Abreu announces his retirement


Bobby Abreu will announce his retirement tonight, according to Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News.

Abreu’s career appeared to be over when the Mets designated him for assignment in early August, but they called up him in September for one last hurrah.

Abreu ceased being a productive regular in 2011, but he had a dozen-year run as one of the best all-around hitters in baseball, consistently posting .300 batting averages and .400 on-base percentages with 20-homer power and 30-steal speed.

Overall for his 18-year, 2,423-game career Abreu has an OPS of .870, which is a higher mark than fellow retirees Paul Konerko (.841) and Derek Jeter (.817).

He was an on-base machine who racked up 2,469 hits with 288 homers and 400 steals. Among all active position players only Jeter and Alex Rodriguez have gotten on base more times than Abreu’s career total of 3,977 and only Rodriguez, Jeter, Albert Pujols, Adrian Beltre, Carlos Beltran, and Chase Utley have a higher Wins Above Replacement total.

Great, underrated player.

Blue Jays sign Danny Espinosa to minors deal

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Free agent middle infielder Danny Espinosa signed a minor-league deal with the Blue Jays, the team announced Saturday. The deal includes an invite to spring training, where Espinosa is scheduled for his first split-squad game against the Orioles this afternoon.

Espinosa, 30, was inked to another minor-league deal with the Yankees in January. The veteran infielder was competing for an infield job until the team picked up second baseman Neil Walker on a one-year, $4 million deal last Monday. Prior to his release, he slashed .160/.276/.320 with one home run through his first 12 games with the Yankees this spring. He didn’t fare much better in the majors last year, either, batting a cumulative .173/.245/.278 with six home runs and a .523 OPS in 295 PA for the Mariners and Rays.

Blue Jays starting shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is still dealing with a bone spur in his heel and has officially been ruled out for Opening Day, which could clear a path for Espinosa to claim a starting role in Toronto. Of course, he won’t be the only candidate under consideration — Yangervis Solarte and Aledmys Diaz are still in the mix as well, though no final decision appears to be made just yet.