The Mets are hesitant to trade Marlon Byrd

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After a lost year, Marlon Byrd has exceeded all expectations this season by batting .263 with 15 home runs, 49 RBI, and an .804 OPS through 77 games  With the Mets unlikely to make a run at things, many have logically speculated that the club will attempt to sell high by the trade deadline later this month. Then again, maybe not.

During an appearance on MLB Network Radio this morning, Mets special assistant to the GM J.P. Ricciardi indicated that the team won’t move Byrd unless they are overwhelmed.

Byrd is unlikely to be a contributor on the 2014 team, so it would be silly to dismiss the possibility of a trade entirely. And teams often say things like this in order to drive up prices. But the Mets had a similar situation last year with Scott Hairston and ended up keeping him. It ultimately comes down to whether the team prefers the chance to win another couple of games with Byrd over the possibility of receiving a lower level prospect in return. Recent history suggests they may stand pat.

Anthony Rendon explains why he didn’t go to the White House

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Today the Angels introduced their newest big star, Anthony Rendon, who just signed a seven-year, $245 million contract to play in Orange County.

And it is Orange County, not Los Angeles, Rendon stressed at the press conference. When asked about the Dodgers, who had also been reported to be courting him, Rendon said he preferred the Angels because, “the Hollywood lifestyle . . . didn’t seem like it would be a fit for us as a family.”

What “the Hollywood Lifestyle” means in that context could mean a lot of things I suppose. It could be about the greater media scrutiny Dodgers players are under compared to Angels players. It could mean that he’d simply prefer to live in Newport Beach than, I dunno, wherever Dodgers players live. Pasadena? Pasadena is more convenient to Dodger Stadium than the beach. Who knows. They never did let Yasiel Puig get that helicopter he wanted, so traffic could’ve been a consideration.

But maybe it’s a subtle allusion to political/cultural stuff. Orange County has trended to the left in some recent elections but it is, historically speaking, a conservative stronghold in Southern California. And, based on something else he said in his press conference, Rendon seems to be pretty conscious of geographical/political matters:

A shoutout to the notion of Texas being Trump country and an askance glance at “the Hollywood Lifestyle” of Los Angeles all in the same press conference. That’s a lot of culture war ground covered in one press conference. So much so that I can’t decide if I should warn Rendon that both Texas and Orange County are trending leftward or if I should tell him to stick to sports.