The Cardinals have announced a news conference for 2PM ET/1PM CT this afternoon. While they have not yet revealed the purpose of the presser, Ken Rosenthal reports that the club will use it to announce a contract extension for right fielder Stephen Piscotty.
Piscotty has played only one full season in the bigs and part of a second, but he has already established himself as the man who will man right in St. Louis for a long time. In 2016 he hit .273/.343/.457 with 22 homers and 85 driven in. In 2015 he hit .305/.359/.494 in 62 games.
Piscotty would not be eligible for arbitration until after the 2019 season and would not be eligible for free agency until after the 2022 season. That means he’ll get some money now without the uncertainty of the next few years. It also means, of course, that he will get a lot less money than if he were to remain healthy and effective and hit those milestones without a long term deal.
But such are the tradeoffs of every young player.
UPDATE: Piscotty will be guaranteed $33.5 million in his extension, which will likely be a six-year deal with a team option.
The Diamondbacks announced on Monday that starter Shelby Miller has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with right elbow inflammation. Miller will get a second opinion on his elbow on Tuesday, per MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert. Pitcher Silvino Bracho has been called up from Triple-A Reno to take Miller’s spot on the roster.
Miller, 26, left Sunday’s start with what was described at the time as forearm tightness. Through his first four starts, Miller is carrying a 4.09 ERA with a 20/12 K/BB ratio in 22 innings.
Bracho, 24, has pitched quite well in 6 2/3 innings of relief at Reno. He’s given up just one unearned run on four hits and a walk (intentional) with 12 strikeouts.
Archie Bradley figures to take Miller’s spot in the starting rotation as Bracho will work middle relief.
And John Lackey is livid.
The Brewers’ first baseman homered in each of his first two plate appearances against Reds starter Amir Garrett on Monday evening, helping his team to a 6-1 lead after two frames. The first was a solo blast in the first inning, and the second was a two-run shot to the opposite field in the second inning.
According to MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, Thames has tied the Brewers’ record for home runs in April with 10. Carlos Lee also hit 10 homers in April 2006.
Seven of Thames’ 10 home runs have come against the Reds. Including his first two at-bats on Monday night, Thames is hitting .379/.474/.924 with 17 RBI along with the 10 dingers. Not too shabby from a guy the Brewers signed to a three-year, $16 million contract during the offseason.
Lackey and Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio both recently implied Thames is using performance-enhancing drugs, but Thames was tested immediately after last Monday’s game against the Cubs.