There hasn’t been any indication that the Mets plan to bring back free agent outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, but starter Noah Syndergaard is really hoping his team can bring the slugger back into the fold, NJ.com’s Randy Miller reports.
Syndergaard said, “Of course we’re hoping. We all saw the tear he went on from July through the end of the season. We’d love to have that bat back in the lineup, so as long as he’s out there, we’re hoping for that.”
The Mets are believed to be in the mix for lower-tier outfielders like Denard Span. They are expected to meet with him in January.
Cespedes, 30, completed a four-year, $36 million contract originally signed with the Athletics in February 2012. In 2015, Cespedes hit .293/.323/.506 with 18 home runs and 61 RBI before being sent to the Mets, prompting an offensive tear. In 249 PA as a Met, he hit .287/.337/.604 with 17 home runs and 44 RBI.
Joe Stichlich of CSN Bay Area is reporting that the Athletics are still pursuing free agent starter Scott Kazmir. The club has already added Rich Hill this offseason and also brought aboard reclamation project Henderson Alvarez. The Dodgers, Royals, Orioles, and Astros have also been reported to have interest in the lefty.
Kazmir started the 2015 season with the A’s but was traded to the Astros on July 23 in exchange for minor leaguers Daniel Mengden and Jacob Nottingham. In 183 combined innings between the two teams, Kazmir finished with a career-low 3.10 ERA and a 155/59 K/BB ratio.
Kazmir, who turns 32 years old in January, has reinvented himself in the last few years after spending the 2012 season in the independent league with the Sugar Land Skeeters. He is believed to be pursuing a four-year deal. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported on Friday that Kazmir already has multiple three-year offers in hand.
New Giants starter Johnny Cueto battled a flexor strain during the 2015 season but his MRI “looked great” according to Giants GM Bobby Evans, per a report from CSN Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic. That certainly helps them feel better about their six-year, $130 million commitment to the right-hander.
Cueto missed only one start with the Reds despite the injury, but finished with a combined 3.44 ERA between the Reds and Royals — his highest mark since 2010. Most of the poor outings came with the Royals, as he compiled a 4.76 ERA across 13 starts.
Cueto is now part of a rotation that includes Madison Bumgarner, Jeff Samardzija, Jake Peavy, and Matt Cain. That will certainly help keep pace with the Diamondbacks with their additions of Zack Greinke and Shelby Miller.
On Friday, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports suggested that Cardinals outfielder Matt Holliday was working out at first base in Florida ahead of a potential position change, which would allow the club to bolster its outfield. GM John Mozeliak tamped down that buzz on Saturday, saying, “We’ve kind of thrown some things out there in the past to a number of players, Matt being one of them, and we believe where he is, is probably the best spot for him,” per a report from Brian Stull of St. Louis Baseball Weekly.
Holliday, who turns 36 in January, played in only 73 games during the 2015 season due to a quadriceps injury. Ostensibly, his consideration at first base would be an attempt to limit the wear-and-tear on his body as he enters the last year of his seven-year, $120 million contract. The Cardinals will pay Holliday $17 million in 2016 plus $1 million to buy him out next season.
Holliday hit .279/.394/.410 with four home runs and 35 RBI in 277 plate appearances this past season. He has never finished a season with an OPS below .800, but his .804 in 2015 was a career-low.
Legendary TV game show Jeopardy! may have reached peak nerdiness on Friday as one of their $1,600 questions pertained to Sabermetrics. None of the three contestants even mustered a guess.
Clue: This word for the science of baseball analytics comes from the name of a research society.
Five Thirty Eight’s Ben Lindbergh provided video on Twitter:
It’s hard to fault the trio for whiffing, though. If one is not a baseball devotee, Sabermetrics simply isn’t something that pops up in everyday conversations.