I wasn’t even aware that they let Len Dykstra out of jail, but apparently he’s free on bail because according to this farkakte press release that readers Jonny 5 and Bicepts each brought to my attention, he’s free enough to where he’s going to fight Jose Canseco in one of those ghastly celebrity boxing match things. And when I say “ghastly,” it refers to just how horribly these things mangle the concept of “celebrity.”
Dykstra is a last minute replacement for the guy who got “famous” for crashing the White House party last year with his wife. And then his wife ran off with the guitar player for Journey. And I wish to God that I was (a) making that up; and/or (b) didn’t know it off the top of my head. I need to step away from the Internet.
Anyway, I can’t think of how either Dykstra or Canseco can sink any lower. Don’t get me wrong, they will sink lower, of this I have no doubt. I just can’t think of how they’ll do it.
The Orioles have inked shortstop Alcides Escobar to a minor league contract, MLB.com’s Joe Trezza reported Saturday. The deal comes with an invitation to spring training and will allow Escobar to earn $700,000 in the majors if he breaks camp with the team (via Jon Heyman of MLB Network). The team has yet to formally announce the agreement.
Escobar, 32, completed an eight-year run with the Royals in 2018. No longer the .280-average, 3.0-fWAR player of seasons past, he hit several career lows after batting .231/.279/.313 with four home runs, eight stolen bases (in 10 chances), and a .593 OPS through 531 plate appearances last year. His defensive ratings also took a hit, and FanGraphs pegged him as the fourth-worst shortstop in the majors after he accumulated -12 DRS over the course of the season, only slightly higher than the Orioles/Dodgers’ Manny Machado, Mets’ Amed Rosario, and Red Sox’ Xander Bogaerts.
Still, Heyman holds that Escobar is being considered for the starting gig this spring and could yet prove an upgrade over top prospects and infield candidates Richie Martin and Drew Jackson. At the very least, the veteran shortstop figures to stabilize the position given Martin and Jackson’s relative inexperience, as both infielders played to varying results in Double-A Tulsa last year and have yet to break into the majors. Should either player earn consideration for the position in camp, however, Escobar might still work his way onto the Opening Day roster in a utility role as he saw some time at third base, second base, and center field in 2018.