Who said this year’s Winter Meetings were boring?
According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, two unidentified agents got into a fight in the parking lot outside the Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel this afternoon. At issue was that one of the agents apparently tried to take a client from the other.
Read it and let your imagination run wild on who these agents might be. Or more importantly, who the player was they were fighting over:
Stay the [expletive] away from my guy!” one man yelled, according to witnesses who described the chaotic – and amusing – scene to Yahoo Sports in exchange for anonymity.
One of the witnesses had pulled into a parking spot at the Dolphin and exited his car to the sound of words being exchanged. A family member suggested he take out his phone and record the incident, and what came of it is a 22-second snippet of a fight that the other witness believes lasted twice as long.
There was lots of yelling and pushing, including the angrier man upping the ante significantly when he said, according to the witnesses, “I’m gonna burn your [expletive] house down!” One of the men, said the witness recording the video, seemed to be apologizing – and then threw a punch to restart the fracas. The video, with the two men fighting in the distance, shows some scrapping, one man throwing a kick and the other winding up for a punch a la Super Macho Man in Mike Tyson’s Punchout.
The tussle continued until a local sheriff, who happened to be roaming through the parking lot, intervened, the witnesses said. After that, hotel employees – including Dolphin director of security Eric Clay, who did not return a message seeking comment from Yahoo Sports – showed up and ended the fight, which left one of the witnesses disappointed.
“It was pathetic,” he told Yahoo Sports. “It was the worst fight I’ve ever seen.”
Below is the closest thing we have to a video of the incident. Unfortunately, we can only see two figures tussling in the distance. Still, it’s not exactly Ali-Frazier:
Do yourself a favor and read the full story from Passan. It’s quite entertaining. And it’s a nice way to pass the time while we wait for something exciting to actually happen in Orlando.
Yankees starter Luis Severino and Phillies starter Aaron Nola both signed contract extensions within the last week. Severino agreed to a four-year, $40 million contract with a 2023 club option. Nola inked a four-year, $45 million deal with a 2023 club option.
While the deals both represented significant raises and longer-term financial security for the right-handed duo, some feel like the players are selling themselves short. It has become a more common practice for players to agree to these types of deals in part due to how stagnant free agency has become. Get the money while you can.
Mets starter Noah Syndergaard is in a similar situation as Severino and Nola were. He and the Mets avoided arbitration last month, agreeing on a $6 million salary for the 2019 season. He has two more years of arbitration eligibility left. A contract extension with the Mets would presumably cover both of those years plus two or three years of what would be free agent years. As Tim Britton of The Athletic reports, however, Syndergaard plans to test free agency when the time comes.
Syndergaard said, “I trust my ability and the talent that I have. So I feel like I’m going to bet (on) myself in free agency and not do what they did. But if it’s fair for both sides and they approach me on it, then maybe we can talk.” He clarified that he would be open to a conversation about an extension, but the Mets thus far haven’t approached him about it. In his words, “There’s been no traction.”
Syndergaard, 26, has been one of baseball’s better starters since debuting in 2015. He owns a career 2.93 ERA with 573 strikeouts and 116 walks in 518 1/3 innings. Among pitchers to have logged at least 400 innings since 2015 and post a lower ERA are Clayton Kershaw (2.22), Jacob deGrom (2.66) and Max Scherzer (2.71). Syndergaard made only seven starts in 2017 yet still ranks seventh among pitchers in total strikeouts since 2015.
If Sydergaard doesn’t end up signing an extension, he will be entering free agency after the 2021 season. The collective bargaining agreement expires in December 2021 and a new one will likely be agreed upon around that time. Syndergaard will hopefully have better prospects entering free agency then than players do now.