The Reds have re-signed catcher Ramon Hernandez to a one-year contract, according to the team’s Twitter feed. Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that the contract is “thought to be worth” around $3 million.
Hernandez, 34, batted .297/.364/.428 with seven homers, 48 RBI and a 792 OPS this past season, while throwing out 34 percent (18-for-53) of would-be basestealers. He batted .311 with an 825 OPS in 132 at-bats after the All-Star break.
Along with Ryan Hanigan, Reds’ catchers led the National League this past season in batting average (.296) and hits (168) while finishing second in RBI (91) and third in on-base percentage (.375) and OPS (804).
Hanigan has rightly surpassed Hernandez as the everyday catcher at this point, so he’ll probably have the larger responsibility of a time share, but there’s plenty of reason to believe they’ll continue to be one of the best catching tandems in baseball next season.
What is modern postseason baseball without controversy involving replay review? In the bottom of the first inning of ALCS Game 4, with the Astros trailing the Red Sox 2-0, José Altuve slapped a Rick Porcello fastball to deep right field. Deep enough for a game-tying two-run home run, in fact. Right fielder Mookie Betts tracked the ball and leaped at the last minute to try to snag the ball, but came up a little short. The ball at first glance appeared to bounce off of a fan’s hand and back onto the field. Right field umpire Joe West initially ruled fan interference, meaning Altuve was out. The Astros challenged and the ruling was upheld, controversially.
Major League Baseball offered clarification on the ruling. Per Joel Sherman of the New York Post:
That was a huge swing for both teams as the game would have been tied otherwise. The Astros did push across a run later, in the bottom of the second, and the Red Sox added a run in the third, so the game is 3-1 as of this writing.