UPDATE: Angelos says Ripken has not offered himself to the team as a prospective employee, reports Buster Olney of ESPN.com.
“Quite simply, Cal Ripken did not offer to become part of the Oriole
organization in any secondary position, such as manager or as an
assistant to [team president] Andy MacPhail, or in some kind of support
role of MacPhail,” Angelos said. “If he wants to make such a proposal,
I’d like to hear about it.”
8:41 AM: Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that that Cal Ripken Jr. met with team president Andy MacPhail about rejoining the Orioles in a front office capacity, however the idea was eventually shot down by owner Peter Angelos.
Angelos, however, nixed the idea in a separate conversation with Ripken,
telling him, according to three sources, that he did not want Ripken to
receive credit once the team returned to prominence.
Rosenthal also writes that Angelos did not want to create the perception that MacPhail was not in complete control, a view that shows how out of touch he is with the fanbase already.
Listen, this sounds like pure ego stuff to me, but if Angelos is so worried about perception, he should have been prepared for the very real possibility that if he declined Ripken’s overtures, it would eventually leak out to the press. He should also recognize that if he wants to get in a battle with Ripken — the most beloved player in franchise history — for the hearts and minds of Orioles fans, he will lose every time.
SAN DIEGO — Willson Contreras is going to St. Louis to replace Yadier Molina at catcher, agreeing to an $87.5 million, five-year contract with the Cardinals on Wednesday.
A person familiar with the negotiations confirmed the move to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal was pending a physical.
The addition of Contreras fills a major void for St. Louis, which won the NL Central this season with a 93-69 record. Molina retired after spending his entire 19-year career with the Cardinals, making 10 All-Star teams and winning nine Gold Gloves.
Contreras was one of the Chicago Cubs’ last holdovers from their 2016 World Series championship. He made his big league debt that year and helped the franchise to its first title since 1908.
The fiery, strong-armed catcher hit .243 with 22 homers and 55 RBIs in 113 games in his last season with his first major league team. He was on the market this summer — leading to an emotional day at Wrigley Field for what looked like his final home game with Chicago — but he remained with the team after the trade deadline.
Contreras was the best option in a thin market for free agent catchers that also included Christian Vázquez and Gary Sánchez.
Contreras also has played first base, third base and the corner outfield spots in the majors. The three-time All-Star made 39 starts at designated hitter this year.
The Venezuela native is a .256 hitter with 117 homers and 365 RBIs in 734 career games over seven seasons. He hit a career-best 24 homers in 2019 and drove in a career-high 74 runs in 2017.