Monday morning the Twins’ official website began offering a “limited edition set” of 25 bobblehead dolls representing every player from the 1991 World Series team. Even Terry Leach, thankfully.
There were 1,000 sets available for $391 each … and they sold out almost immediately, which means (math!) the Twins generated $391,000, the “net proceeds” of which will be donated to their community fund. As opposed to, say, going toward Matt Tolbert’s $425,000 salary or something.
Of course, some of those 1,000 sets were sold to people who’re already looking make a profit of their own via EBay, which is sort of sad but mostly just predictable. My involvement was much classier, as I refused to actually spend $391 and instead simply begged for someone to give me a set for free. It didn’t work (so far!).
The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.
Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.
The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.
The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.