Buster Posey was involved in a play at the plate last night for the first time since he suffered a broken leg and torn ankle ligaments in a collision with Marlins’ outfielder Scott Cousins last May 25.
Rangers’ shortstop Elvis Andrus singled into center field and center fielder Angel Pagan made a strong throw to the plate. Posey positioned himself a couple feet in front of home plate to receive the throw and made a lunging swipe tag at a sliding Mitch Moreland. The runner was ruled safe, but most importantly, Posey made it through the play unscathed.
While it was an important hurdle to cross, Posey told Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com that he was mostly focused on his technique.
“I was more thinking kind of about the work we’d done this spring and all the practice and stuff,” Posey said. “And I think … I think it was good.”
Reflecting on Posey’s collision with Cousins is inevitable and it will likely be brought up every time a runner is bearing down on him this season and perhaps for longer, but hopefully we’ll get to the day where plays at the plate become routine again.
The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.
Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.
While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.