Ted Williams famously opted against resting to preserve his .400 batting average on the final day of the 1941 season, instead going 6-for-8 in a doubleheader to finish at .406.
Jose Reyes took a different approach today, leading off the Mets’ season finale with a bunt single that raised his batting average to an NL-leading .337 … and then immediately exiting the game as fans in New York booed the decision.
They didn’t even wait for Reyes to run the bases or take his position defensively in the next half-inning. And that may end up being his final moment in a Mets uniform, which is a shame.
By adding a 1-for-1 to his season totals Reyes has made things very difficult on Ryan Braun, who now needs to collect at least three hits tonight to win the batting title.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.