The Mets could use a pitcher — they could use a lot of things actually — and according to Adam Rubin of the Daily News, they are seriously interested in free agent Joel Piniero.
Piniero doesn’t walk anyone. Indeed, he was the least walkinest pitcher in baseball, allowing a mere 1.14 per nine innings last year. Such stinginess would be a nice addition to a Mets staff that walks guys like crazy.
So go for it, New York. And why not take a chance on the Mets, Piniero? They have a huge park, they’ll give you a lot of money, and given how bad things were in Queens last year, you’ll be a hero if you do anything other than blow out both hamstrings while running in the outfield on Opening Day.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.