Free agent Cody Decker reportedly signed a deal with the Brewers on Saturday, per a report by FanRag Sports’ Tommy Stokke. Decker posted a cryptic tweet to that effect earlier in the day, but declined to disclose the name of his new team. The Brewers have yet to confirm the deal.
FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal speculated on Decker’s landing spot first, pointing out that the 29-year-old had been developing his skills behind the plate with former Padres coach Pat Murphy when the two worked together in San Diego. The rookie infielder had also been in talks with the Brewers earlier in the offseason, so the deal didn’t come as a total surprise.
Decker broke into the majors with the Padres in 2015, logging three appearances at first base and recording a single RBI in 12 PA as a mid-September call-up. He ran in the minor league circuits in 2016, batting .232/.284/.481 for the Red Sox’ Double-A affiliate and signing on for back-to-back stints with the Rockies’ and Royals’ Triple-A clubs. Per Stokke’s report, Decker will be expected to compete with Andrew Susac, Jett Bandy and Manny Pina for time behind the plate next season.
As you get ready for Memorial Day weekend and whatever it entails for you and yours, take some time to read an excellent article from Mike Bates over at The Hardball Times.
The article is about Eddie Grant. You probably never heard of him. He was a journeyman infielder — often a backup — from 1905 through 1915. If you have heard of him, it was likely not for his baseball exploits, however: it was because he was the first active baseball player to die in combat, killed in the Battle of the Argonne Forest in October 1915.
Michael tells us about more than Grant’s death, however. He provides a great overview of his life and career. And notes that Grant didn’t even have to go to war if he didn’t want to. He was 34, had the chance to coach or manage and had a law degree and the potential to make a lot of money following his baseball career. He volunteered, however, for both patriotic and personal reasons. And it cost him his life.
Must-read stuff indeed. Especially this weekend.
The Cleveland Indians will unveil a Frank Robinson statue at Progressive Field on Saturday.
Robinson’s tenure in Cleveland was not long, but it was historic. On April 8, 1975, he became the first African-American manager in Major League history. He was a player-manager. One of the last ones, in fact. He spent two years in that role and then a third year — a partial year anyway — as a manager only. Robinson would go on to manage the Giants, Orioles and the Expos/Nationals, compiling a career record of 1065-1176 in 16 seasons. He is now a top MLB executive.
Robinson was, of course, a Hall of Fame player as well, lodging 21 seasons for the Reds, Orioles, Dodgers, Angels and Indians. He won two MVP awards and hit for the Triple Crown in 1966. Overall he hit 586 home runs – 10th all time – and was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1982. For an inner-circle Hall of Famer with that kind of resume he is still, strangely enough, underrated. I guess that happens when your contemporaries are Willie Mays, Hank Aaron and Mickey Mantle.
Anyway, congrats to Frank Robinson for yet another well-deserved honor in a career full of them.