It’s been over a year since he last wore a major league baseball uniform so we’re probably at the point where a story about Elijah Dukes getting arrested is less about a ballplayer in trouble with the law than it is about a criminal who happened to once play ball. Still, for old times sake:
Troubled former Tampa Bay Rays player Elijah Dukes has been charged in Florida with driving with a suspended or revoked driver’s license. Officials say the 26-year-old Dukes was arrested Sunday afternoon on an exit ramp of Interstate 75 near Tampa. Hillsborough County Jail records show he was released Sunday on a $250 bond.
Suspended license? It’s like he’s not even trying anymore. Dukes’ crimes used to be so much more ugly and require so much more criminal intent than this. A suspended license is just plain laziness. He’s become a shell of his former self.
If Dukes wants to be relevant in his chosen field again, he’s really going to have to raise the stakes. Elijah: have you considered light treason?
Fox 26’s Mark Berman reports that the Astros and third baseman Alex Bregman have agreed to $100 million contract extension. MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart confirms a deal has been reached and adds that the deal is actually for five years, beginning after the 2019 season. The contract will cover all three of Bregman’s arbitration years and two years of would-be free agency.
Bregman, who turns 25 years old later this month, has quickly become one of the best third basemen in baseball. Across parts of three seasons, he has hit .282/.366/.500 with 58 home runs, 208 RBI, 224 runs scored, and 29 stolen bases. FanGraphs credited him with 7.6 Wins Above Replacement, tied with Francisco Lindor and Christian Yelich for the fourth-best mark among position players in baseball, trailing only Mookie Betts (10.4), Mike Trout (9.8), and José Ramírez (8.0).
This is obviously a smart move for the Astros, as this contract extension will secure Bregman’s age 25-30 seasons. With second baseman José Altuve also locked up through 2024, and presumed extensions to come for Carlos Correa and possibly Gerrit Cole and George Springer, the Astros have a core that they can build around for years to come.