Mets trade Jeff Francoeur to Rangers

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Most of us, including Craig, had a hard time believing that Rangers general manager Jon Daniels actually wanted Jeff Francoeur when reports first surfaced earlier today. Well, the deal just went down.

The Mets traded Francoeur to the Rangers in exchange for infielder Joaquin Arias, according to a team press release. The Rangers are also reportedly receiving some cash as part of the deal. 

Jon Heyman of SI.com was first with the proposed swap earlier tonight, while Francoeur confirmed the trade to reporters after Tuesday’s loss to the Braves.

Arias isn’t really a player of any significance, however he was designated for assignment in order to make room for Alex Cora on the Rangers’ roster last week. That’s right, both Cora and Francoeur are now members of the Texas Rangers.

As a Mets fan, it’s hard to see any redeeming qualities in Francoeur, but he’ll likely be used as part of a tandem with the left-handed hitting David Murphy. His role could be elevated depending upon the condition of Josh Hamilton’s knee, but let’s hope it doesn’t come to that. I’m guessing he’ll be non-tendered in December either way. 

Max Fried loses to Braves in salary arbitration

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Pitcher Max Fried lost to the Atlanta Braves in salary arbitration and will make $13.5 million in the upcoming season instead of his $15 million request.

Mark Burstein, Fredric Horowitz and Jeanne Vonhof issued their decision a day after hearing arguments.

Fried won a $6.85 million salary last year in arbitration instead of the team’s $6.6 million proposal.

He followed former Atlanta teammate Dansby Swanson in going to a hearing in consecutive years. Swanson, a shortstop, lost in 2021 and won last year, then signed a seven-year, $177 million contract with the Chicago Cubs.

The last player to win hearings in consecutive years was pitcher Trevor Bauer against Cleveland in 2018 and 2019.

Fried, a 29-year-old left-hander, went 14-7 for the second straight season and lowered his ERA to 2.48 from 3.04 in 2021. Fried was a first-time All-Star last season, was second to Miami’s Sandy Alcantara in Cy Young Award voting and was third in the National League in ERA behind Alcantara and Julio Urias with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

In 2021, Fried pitched six shutout innings in World Series Game 6 as the Braves won their first title since 1995.