UPDATE: Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun is now reporting that the O’s and Betemit have agreed to a two-year deal with an option for a third year. Exact terms aren’t yet available, but it’s a bit of a surprise to see him get a multi-year deal at this point of the offseason. And from a team that isn’t expected to contend, no less.
10:13 PM, Monday: Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles have signed Wilson Betemit to a one-year contract, pending a physical. No word on the salary yet.
Betemit earned $1 million last season while batting .285/.343/.452 with eight home runs, 46 RBI and a .795 OPS over 359 plate appearances between the Royals and Tigers. The 30-year-old switch-hitter has an .817 career OPS against right-handed pitching.
The Orioles had previously committed to using Mark Reynolds at third base and Chris Davis at first base this season, but Betemit offers some experience at both positions. Of course, he’s not regarded as a strong defender, so Buck Showalter could also use him at designated hitter.
Wednesday night’s Phillies-Mets game did not feature any beanballs or benches-clearing brawls, but it did feature Rhys Hoskins getting his revenge against Jacob Rhame. Last night, Rhame threw a fastball up-and-in at Hoskins. Rhame maintained his innocence, though Hoskins was skeptical.
Hoskins got a chance for revenge against Rhame in the ninth inning with the Phillies already ahead 4-0. Bryce Harper drew a leadoff walk. Hoskins then worked a 1-1 count before drilling a 95 MPH fastball over the left field fence for a two-run home run. Hoskins milked his accomplishment, taking a 34-second stroll around the bases. For a point of comparison, MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo notes that noted speedster Bartolo Colón had a 30.5-second trot around the bases after homering in 2016. MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki notes that Hoskins’ longest home run trot prior to this was clocked at 28.88 seconds. Wednesday’s trot was the first this season above 30 seconds across the league.
The dinger is Hoskins’ seventh of the season. He also walked and tripled in Wednesday’s 6-0 win. On the season, Hoskins is now batting .273/.402/.580 with 20 RBI and 18 runs scored in 107 plate appearances.