Mark Buehrle admits he threw at a guy

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Paul Konerko got beaned in the face by Carl Pavano in the first inning of last night’s Twins-White Sox game. In the second inning, Mark Buehrle plunked Michael Cuddyer in the shoulder, no doubt because of the Konerko thing. No brawls, no ugliness, end of story and life went on.

But Buehrle’s quote, when asked about it after the game, was interesting:

“When I’m told to do something I try to go out there and do it to the
best of my ability. Obviously you got to protect your
guys.”

I know that Ozzie Guillen told Buehrle told hit Cuddyer. You do too, because that’s just how these things work. But it’s not very often that you hear the pitcher actually admit later that he was told to hit the guy.  Usually, if anyone even bothers to ask the question at all, the answer is something like “well, I was trying to pitch him inside to I could set him up for a pitch on the outside corner and it just got away from me.”

I think the odds of Buehrle being disciplined over this approach zero, but I wonder if anyone else finds it odd to hear him make such an admission.

Rays’ Díaz gets $24 million, three-year deal, avoids arbitration

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Tampa Bay Rays infielder Yandy Díaz agreed to a $24 million, three-year contract on Tuesday that avoided a salary arbitration hearing.

Díaz’s agreement could be worth $36 million over four seasons.

The 31-year old will receive $6 million this season, $8 million in 2024 and $10 million for 2025. The 2026 club is $12 million with no buyout. There is a $1 million assignment bonus that would be payable by receiving team.

Díaz has spent parts of six seasons in the majors with Cleveland (2017-18) and Tampa Bay (2019-22). He has a career average of .278 with 39 home runs and 198 RBIs.

Acquired by the Rays in a three-team trade on Dec. 13, 2018, Díaz hit .296 with nine homers and 57 RBIs in 137 games last season, He career highs with 71 runs, 140 hits, 33 doubles, and 78 walks.

Díaz was the third Rays’ arbitration-eligible player to reach a deal.

Reliever Pete Fairbanks agreed Friday to a $12 million, three-year contract that could be worth up to $24.6 million over four seasons. The 29-year-old right-hander was 0-0 with a 1.13 ERA in 24 appearances last year after beginning the season on the 60-day injured list with a right lat strain.

Left-hander Jeffrey Springs also agreed last week to a $31 million, four-year contract that could be worth $65.75 million over five seasons.

The 30-year-old began last season in the bullpen and transitioned to the starting rotation in May and finished 9-5 with a 2.46 ERA in 33 appearances, including 25 starts.

Tampa Bay remains scheduled for hearings with right-handers Jason Adam and Ryan Thompson, left-hander Colin Poche, and outfielder Harold Ramírez.