Dan Uggla is back from the disabled list 15 days after undergoing Lasik eye surgery to correct vision problems that plagued him all season.
Before the surgery Uggla hit .186 with a league-high 146 strikeouts and was basically helpless after the All-Star break with a .133 batting average and 30 strikeouts in 24 games. He played two minor-league rehab games at Triple-A after the surgery, going 2-for-7 with a homer and four strikeouts. So … who knows.
It’ll be hard for Uggla to hit any worse than he did before the surgery or be less productive than fill-in Elliot Johnson.
Extension season continues. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Cardinals and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt are close to an agreement on a five-year extension. The value is believed to be around $130 million, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Goldschmidt was set to become a free agent after the season.
The Cardinals acquired Goldschmidt, 31, from the Diamondbacks in December in exchange for Luke Weaver, Carson Kelly, Andy Young, and a 2019 competitive balance round B pick. The slugger is a six-time All-Star, a three-time Gold Glove Award winner, and a four-time Silver Slugger Award winner. Goldschmidt owns a career .297/.398/.532 triple-slash line along with 209 home runs, 710 RBI, 709 runs scored, and 124 stolen bases. He is also well-regarded for his defense at first base. As a result, he has accumulated 40.3 Wins Above Replacement over eight seasons, according to Baseball Reference.
With Goldschmidt in place, the Cardinals are set at first base for the foreseeable future. Though Goldschmidt got off to a slow start last season, carrying an OPS barely above .700 into June, he recovered and finished with a .922 OPS. That two-month blip aside, there’s no reason to think Goldschmidt’s production is about to fall off anytime soon.