After signings, Orioles may look to deal Wigginton

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Last season Ty Wigginton started 38 games at first base, 35 games at third base, and 23 games at designated hitter for the Orioles, but with offseason signings Miguel Tejada and Garrett Atkins now manning the corner infield spots MASNSports.com’s Roch Kubatko speculates that Wigginton could be traded before Opening Day.
Tejada, Atkins, and Wigginton are all right-handed hitters, so there’s no real room for a time-sharing arrangement there, but the Orioles could give him starts platooning with left-handed bat Luke Scott at DH. Paying $3.5 million for a platoon DH probably doesn’t sound great to the Orioles, but that’s actually pretty close to the best possible use of Wigginton.
His glove isn’t much good anywhere and he typically struggles against right-handed pitching, but Wigginton has hit .286/.364/.496 against left-handers over the past three seasons. During that same time Scott batted .247/.319/.474 versus lefties, so by keeping Wigginton around the Orioles could add 50-75 points of OPS to the lineup when a southpaw is on the mound. And he also has some value as a backup 1B/3B/LF/RF/DH.
Of course, if they can get any kind of decent prospect for him they should. But that seems unlikely.

Rafael Devers won’t visit White House with Red Sox

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The World Series champion Red Sox are scheduled to visit President Trump in the White House on February 15. Some have speculated that manager Álex Cora, who is from Puerto Rico and has been critical of Trump and has been a big factor in Hurricane Maria relief efforts, might not go as a form of protest. Thus far, nothing concrete has been reported on that front.

However, third baseman Rafael Devers says he isn’t going to join the Red Sox on their visit to the White House, Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports. Devers would prefer to focus on baseball, as the Red Sox open spring training on February 13 and position players have to report on February 17. Per Chris Mason, Devers also said via a translator, “The opportunity was presented and I just wasn’t compelled to go.”

Devers hails from the Dominican Republic and he, like many of Major League Baseball’s foreign-born player base, might not be happy about Trump’s immigration policies. Understandably, he is being tight-lipped about his motivation, but it wouldn’t be surprising if Devers is making a silent protest by choosing not to attend. He is thus far the only member of the team to bow out.

Devers, 22, hit .240/.298/.433 with 21 home runs, 66 RBI, and 59 runs scored in 490 plate appearances last season.

Last year, when the Astros visited Trump at the White House, they did so without Carlos Correa and Carlos Beltrán. Both are from Puerto Rico. It is certainly not unprecedented for individual players to opt out of the White House visit.

No word yet on what food will be served during Boston’s trip to the nation’s capital, but the smart money is on hamberders.