Ramon Hernandez probably isn’t very happy with his agent right now.
Yesterday he re-signed with the Reds for one year and $3 million, but now John Buck has reportedly agreed to a three-year, $18 million deal with the Marlins.
Buck parlayed a career-year into $18 million, yet his career-year really wasn’t better than Hernandez’s performance this season. Buck hit .281 with an .802 OPS in 113 games and threw out 28 percent of steal attempts. Hernandez hit .297 with a .792 OPS in 97 games and threw out 34 percent of steal attempts.
And while Buck is four years younger, he’s hardly a good choice for a three-year contract and Hernandez’s pre-2010 track record is vastly superior. Obviously it would have been tough to predict that the Marlins would decide to overpay for a mediocre catcher coming off a career-year, but if the catching market yields an $18 million deal for Buck it sure seems like Hernandez should have done better than $3 million.
The Mariners are in the midst of reconstructing their roster, a process which most recently resulted in the trade of first baseman/DH Edwin Encarnación to the Yankees, per a report from ESPN’s Jeff Passan. While the teams have yet to publicly confirm the deal, the Mariners are expected to receive pitching prospect Juan Then and will likely eat a significant portion of Encarnación’s salary as well.
Encarnación is a sizable get for the Yankees, who could benefit from the veteran’s power and consistency in their ongoing drive toward the postseason. The 36-year-old infielder missed some time with a bout of lower back tightness, dental issues, and soreness in his left hand, but has still maintained a decent .241/.356/.531 batting line with an AL-best 21 home runs, an .888 OPS, and 1.7 fWAR through his first 289 plate appearances of the year. Per Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, Encarnación has another $11-12 million left on his contract in 2019, with a $20 million option for the 2020 season and a $5 million buyout.
Then, 19, was acquired by the Yankees in a three-person trade with the Mariners during the 2017 offseason. The right-hander currently ranks no. 27 in the Yankees’ system and made his last pro ball appearance for New York’s rookie-level affiliate in 2018, pitching to a 2.70 ERA, 2.0 BB/9, and 7.6 SO/9 across 50 innings. It’s not clear if any other players are involved in the trade, though USA Today’s Bob Nightengale notes that no other prospects are thought to be included in the package for Encarnación.