Remember Mike Bacsik? He was the guy who served up home run number 756 to Barry Bonds back in 2007. Back in January he was accused by former teammate Tim Redding of grooving the pitch to Bonds, which caused a minor dustup. Bacsik came out of that looking OK, though, because it turns out that Redding has often been a jerk to teammates and, hey, Bacsik is just some ex-pitcher trying to make a living on the radio.
Turns out that Bacsik is the bigger jerk, however, as yesterday he tweeted the following after the San Antonio Spurs beat the Dallas Mavericks: “Congrats to all the dirty Mexicans in San Antonio.” The tweet was almost immediately deleted, but nothing ever dies on the Internet.
A lot of people thought Bacsik served up the homer to Bonds in an effort to make a little living for himself out on the memorabilia circuit. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that he’s not going to be invited to sign “Mike Bacsik #756” on worthless baseball cards anytime soon.
The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.
Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.
The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.
The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.