Cameron Maybin hits the longest homer of 2012

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Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin took Arizona’s Trevor Cahill way out of Chase Field on Monday night, hitting a 485-foot homer to left-center.

ESPN Stats & Info gives it a one-foot edge over Nelson Cruz’s homer on June 3 and four feet on Travis Hafner’s blast on April 15.

The homer was just Maybin’s fourth of the season and first since June 8, but it shows what kind of power he has if he can ever harness it. A big disappointment this year after a promising first season in San Diego, he entered Monday’s game batting .202/.281/.289 in 263 at-bats. In the hopes that simpler mechanics will lead to more contact, the Padres have had him rework his swing by dropping his leg kick.

Yasmani Grandal signs a four-year, $73 million deal with the White Sox

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The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.

Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.

The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.

The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.