Magglio Ordonez “almost hung it up” after terrible first half

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Magglio Ordonez told Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com that he considered retiring around midseason after hitting .217 in the first half while struggling through soreness in his surgically repaired ankle.

“I almost hung it up,” Ordonez said. “When I was playing, I didn’t enjoy the game and I play with my heart.”

Ordonez also plays with his bat and he didn’t exactly thrive in the second half, hitting .292 with two homers and a measly .362 slugging percentage. However, he hit very well in September and is now playing every day in the playoffs thanks to Brennan Boesch’s thumb injury.

Ordonez compared himself to a car, saying “when you have a flat tire it’s hard for it to run” but “now the tire has a lot of air in it.” He earned $10 million this season while missing 70 games and hitting just .255 with a .634 OPS, but Ordonez is batting sixth tonight against the Yankees after going 3-for-3 in Game 2.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.