The Orioles are going to sign Miguel Tejada

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Earlier this evening I saw someone tweeting about Miguel Tejada and the Orioles signing a deal. I followed it back to the source and found some sketchy looking Spanish language report that claimed to be based on Tejada’s Twitter account. Except, as Enrique Rojas of ESPN noted, Tejada doesn’t have a Twitter account.

Hahaha, I said to myself, how silly for someone to fake a Miguel Tejada to the Orioles report. I mean, what’s the point of faking something so minor and, really, so unnecessary and doomed to failure?

Joke’s on me, though:

The Orioles are closing in on signing veteran infielder Miguel Tejada and he will report to the team’s Spring Training facility in Sarasota, Fla. on Monday to take a physical.

Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said the team received favorable reports about Tejada, who is 37, and he will work out for the foreseeable future in extended spring.  The two sides have not reached an exact contract agreement, but that’s expected as long as Monday’s workout and physical go smoothly.

Or, maybe, the joke’s on anyone in the Oriole’s organization who thinks that Tejada has anything left in the tank. He hit .239/.270/.326 with the Giants last year, who cut him. THE GIANTS. They were combing the high schools last year, looking for assistant JV coaches who may have played semi-pro ball in the 90s to see if they could help the offense, for cryin’ out loud.

Oh well. Good luck to all involved. Just don’t pin any hopes on this translating to any major league value whatsoever.

Hunter Pence is mashing for the Rangers

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Hunter Pence was thought to be on his way to retirement after a lackluster 2018 season with the Giants. As he entered his mid-30’s, Pence spent a considerable amount of time on the injured list, playing in 389 out of 648 possible regular season games with the Giants from 2015-18.

Pence, however, kept his career going, inking a minor league deal with the Rangers in February. He performed very well in spring training, earning a spot on the Opening Day roster. Pence hasn’t stopped hitting.

Entering Monday night’s game against the Mariners, Pence was batting .299/.358/.619 with eight home runs and 28 RBI in 109 plate appearances, mostly as a DH. Statcast agrees that Pence has been mashing the ball. He has an average exit velocity of 93.3 MPH this season, which would obliterate his marks in each of the previous four seasons since Statcast became a thing. His career average exit velocity is 89.8 MPH. He has “barreled” the ball 10.4 percent of the time, well above his 6.2 percent average.

What Pence did to a baseball in the seventh inning of Monday’s game, then, shouldn’t come as a surprise.

That’s No. 9 on the year for Pence. Statcast measured it at 449 feet and 108.3 MPH off the bat. Not only is Pence not retired, he may be a lucrative trade chip for the Rangers leading up to the trade deadline at the end of July.