Jair Jurrjens leaves start with strained hamstring

1 Comment

Jair Jurrjens left this afternoon’s start against the Cardinals after just one inning because of a strained hamstring.
Jurrjens allowed three runs in the opening frame, at which point reliever Kris Medlen got loose in a hurry out in the bullpen and replaced him to begin the second inning.
Off to a rough start even before the injury, Jurrjens came into today’s game at 0-2 with a 5.48 ERA and 15/11 K/BB ratio in four outings after ranking third in the NL with a 2.60 ERA last season.
Unless they stage a comeback against Adam Wainwright, the Braves are in line for their ninth straight loss after beginning the season 8-5.

Yasmani Grandal signs a four-year, $73 million deal with the White Sox

Getty Images
7 Comments

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.