Dioner Navarro only has a bruise after his collision with Chase Utley

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It looked scary and he had to go to the hospital for X-rays, but Dioner can consider himself lucky:

 

Following up on all of that, Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com asked Cubs players and manager Dale Sveum what they thought of the play. They’re pretty much of the opinion that “it’s baseball” and don’t think Chase Utley’s hit on Navarro was dirty.

These plays suck for everyone involved. Ideally catchers don’t block the plate before they have the ball. They’re technically not allowed to anyway, but that rule is ignored 100% of the time. But there’s a reason for that rule beyond mere fair play for the runner. Blocking the plate without the ball, by necessity, means you’re not looking at the runner and are probably not bracing for any kind of collision. You’re a sitting duck, basically, by your own design.

A.J. Pollock may be the Dodgers’ next free agent target

A.J. Pollock
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Free agent outfielder A.J. Pollock has landed on the Dodgers’ radar, and The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal says the two appear to be in discussions regarding a deal for 2019. Terms of any prospective deal have not been released, but interest is presumed to be fairly high as he checks two boxes on their wish list: that of a right-handed hitter and an experienced centerfielder.

Pollock, 31, rounded out a seven-year career with the Diamondbacks in 2018. While he was sidelined for nearly seven weeks after fracturing his left thumb on a dive gone wrong, he finished the season batting a hearty .257/.316/.484 with a career-best 21 home runs, 13 steals (in 15 chances), and 2.5 fWAR across 460 plate appearances. He received a $17.9 million qualifying offer from the club at the end of the year and elected to enter free agency in hopes of a better deal, which some have estimated at five years and $80 million.

So far, it’s not clear whether teams are willing to meet those terms. Pollock profiles as both a solid hitter and defender, but he hasn’t played a season in full health since 2015, which may be a deal-breaker for those in search of long-term talent. Even with that caveat, however, the Dodgers are far from the only club willing to enter negotiations with the outfielder this winter. The Braves have been linked to Pollock since December, and the Mets and Reds have expressed varying levels of interest as well.