Clint Barmes is a Padres hipster

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Clint Barmes signed a one-year, $1.5 million contract with the Padres on December 3, just before Padres GM A.J. Preller completely overhauled the roster. Here’s a look at what happened in San Diego after he signed, per MLB.com’s transactions page:

  • December 18: Padres acquire outfielder Matt Kemp in a trade with the Dodgers, and catcher Derek Norris in a trade with the Athletics
  • December 19: Padres acquire outfielder Justin Upton in a trade with the Braves, outfielder Wil Myers in a trade with the Rays, and sign free agent pitcher Brandon Morrow
  • December 20: Padres acquire third baseman Will Middlebrooks in a trade with the Red Sox
  • December 29: Padres acquire pitcher Shawn Kelley in a trade with the Yankees
  • December 30: Padres acquire pitcher Brandon Maurer in a trade with the Mariners
  • January 7: Padres sign free agent pitcher Josh Johnson

Barmes was aware the Padres were looking to improve, but not like that. Via MLB.com’s Thomas Harding:

“Being one of the earlier guys to sign over there, you hear from the GM that they’re going to try to make these trades and sign these guys,” Barmes said Saturday before working with a large group of boys and girls from Colorado, Wyoming and Nebraska at the Clint Barmes Top of the Nation Baseball Clinic in Greeley, Colo. “It happens every year. You hear a lot of that. But to have a guy do what he’s done has been pretty impressive.

“My agent said they were focusing on making some changes and bringing guys in. It’s definitely going to be exciting.”

As Harding says, Barmes joined the Padres before it was cool.

Barmes, 36 in March, will serve in a back-up role for the Padres. He hit a meager .245/.328/.294 in 116 plate appearances last season with the Pirates, but provides versatility with his ability to play any position in the infield.

Mets invite Tim Tebow to spring training

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Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.

Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.

Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.