Suicide bombers hit three hotels frequented by westerners in Baghdad yesterday. When I read about it, I’ll admit, my first thought wasn’t “Oh God, I hope Chris Coghlan is safe!” Indeed, I had actually forgot all about the Marlins’ Iraq trip. Still, it’s good to hear this from Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald:
Just got off the phone with Marlins communications vice president
P.J. Loyello, who said a contingent of Marlins bound for
Iraq landed in Kuwait this morning, not long after suicide bombers
blasted three Baghdad hotels in neighboring Iraq.
“They’re safe,” said Loyello, who has been in contact with the
traveling party. “They’re not in Iraq at the moment. They have
landed (in Kuwait) and they’re in good hands.”
The trip includes manager Fredi Gonzalez, team president Larry
Beinfest, Coghlan, catcher
John Baker, and four Mermaids cheerleaders.
No worries, Mrs. Beinfest: I’m sure the gender balance of the delegation is a purely political consideration.
Extension season continues. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Cardinals and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt are close to an agreement on a five-year extension. The value is believed to be around $130 million, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Goldschmidt was set to become a free agent after the season.
The Cardinals acquired Goldschmidt, 31, from the Diamondbacks in December in exchange for Luke Weaver, Carson Kelly, Andy Young, and a 2019 competitive balance round B pick. The slugger is a six-time All-Star, a three-time Gold Glove Award winner, and a four-time Silver Slugger Award winner. Goldschmidt owns a career .297/.398/.532 triple-slash line along with 209 home runs, 710 RBI, 709 runs scored, and 124 stolen bases. He is also well-regarded for his defense at first base. As a result, he has accumulated 40.3 Wins Above Replacement over eight seasons, according to Baseball Reference.
With Goldschmidt in place, the Cardinals are set at first base for the foreseeable future. Though Goldschmidt got off to a slow start last season, carrying an OPS barely above .700 into June, he recovered and finished with a .922 OPS. That two-month blip aside, there’s no reason to think Goldschmidt’s production is about to fall off anytime soon.