Cubs rookie Brett Jackson was involved in a scary play last night in Pittsburgh, as he sprinted to rob Andrew McCutchen of extra bases before crashing into the chain-link fence in center field.
It looked pretty bad and Jackson did have to leave the game, but you’ll be happy to know that he ended up with just a bruised right knee. Jackson told Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com after the game that he doesn’t plan on toning down his aggressiveness in center field.
“I’ve always been that way,” Jackson said. “I’ll go through a wall for the team.”
Jackson, who was called up from Triple-A Iowa last month, is hitting .191 with 11 extra-base hits (four homers), eight RBI and a 48/16 K/BB ratio over his first 110 plate appearances in the big leagues. Strikeouts were a big problem for him in the minors too, so many question whether he’ll hit enough to be a quality regular in the big leagues, but he sure knows how to go out and get it in center field.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.