Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that Orlando Hudson will decline the Twins’ arbitration offer, which is expected following reports that the two sides reached a so-called gentleman’s agreement where Hudson would turn down the offer if the team made it.
That allows the Twins to essentially get a free compensatory draft pick. There’s no real benefit for Hudson, but it also doesn’t cost him anything and his agent gets points for doing the Twins a favor.
Amusingly, Heyman calls Hudson a “fine player who could help any clubhouse.”
In fairness Heyman is also the same guy who calls every signing a good move. However, in this case Hudson is being let go in part because the Twins specifically didn’t like his presence in the clubhouse, as multiple sources affiliated with the team told me throughout the season that his outspoken jokester act grew tiresome even though national media members like Heyman continue to tout it as a positive trait.
Hudson will be playing for a fourth team in four seasons despite consistently solid performances on the field, so you can probably do the math there.
I just saw Jay Jaffe of FanGraphs refer to this as “BryceGhazi” and we’re not gonna top that, so we shouldn’t even try.
The controversy: Bryce Harper, in defeating Kyle Schwarber in the Home Run Derby last night, didn’t follow the rules. Or else his dad, who was pitching to him didn’t. The rule in question is that the pitcher has to wait for the last hit ball to land before delivering the next one. Given that the Derby is a timed event, such a thing matters, of course, because the faster you get pitches the faster you can hit them out of the park. At least if you don’t get too tired first.
Harper’s dad was a bit quick with the final three pitches in the final round, allowing Harper to get to 18, tying Kyle Schwarber before winning it outright with his 30 seconds bonus time. Watch as Harper waves for his dad to deliver the pitch while the last ball is still flying:
I’m not gonna argue that he didn’t do it. I will say, however, that no one should really care. Mostly because it’s the Home Run Derby and it doesn’t matter a bit. Getting mad about this is a half-step removed from getting mad that Blackjack Mulligan used a foreign object to gouge Pedro Morales’ eyes during a house show in 1976. Yes, it’s true, but c’mon, we’re entertaining people here.
I have not seen any suggestion that Kyle Schwarber is upset, but if he later says he is I’ll simultaneously understand yet still roll my eyes. I doubt MLB will do anything here or issue a statement of any kind. If it does, I’ll roll my eyes harder. Because, I repeat: It’s the Home Run Derby.