A couple days after the Ryne Sandberg-Jimmy Rollins foofaraw broke, Ryne Sandberg is still insisting that benching Rollins for a couple of days is not a disciplinary thing or about him sending a message. People in the know aren’t buying that.
Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com is one. He wrote last night that the timing was too perfect to accept that it was merely about wanting to give Freddy Galvis reps:
Sandberg’s there’s-nothing-to-see-here story became a little tough to believe when it became clear he was bothered by a recent comment that Rollins made in the Philadelphia Daily News.
On Monday, with the losses and the 0-fers piling up, Rollins said something to the effect that he wasn’t concerned about the way things were going because it was just spring training.
“Who cares?” he said.
The comment hit the paper Tuesday morning, the same day that Rollins was abruptly scratched from the lineup.
And then there is this tweet from Jayson Stark this morning:
Apparently Rollins and Sandberg spoke yesterday. For everyone’s sake apart from the reporters, you hope they resolved things. Because this sort of drama is no way to start off a season.
The Yankees appear to have moved on from free agent Manny Machado this winter, but could they be turning their attention to Rockies superstar Nolan Arenado? That’s the idea floated by Andy Martino of SNY, who hears that GM Brian Cashman has been involved in recent discussions concerning the third baseman. No official comments have been made to the press yet, though, and it’s not clear whether the Yankees would prefer to pursue Arenado prior to the 2019 season or partway through it.
The 27-year-old infielder earned his fourth consecutive All-Star nomination, Silver Slugger, and Gold Glove award in 2018 after slashing .297/.374/.561 with 38 home runs, a .935 OPS, and 5.7 fWAR across 673 plate appearances. There’s no question he’s provided immense value to Colorado’s lineup over the last half-decade, and his consistency and incredible power at the plate helped form the basis of the record $30 million arbitration figure he presented to the team last week. The Rockies countered at $24 million, however, and in doing so may have jeopardized their chances of convincing the infielder to forego free agency in 2020 and take a long-term deal instead.
Assuming he declines to negotiate an extension with the Rockies, Arenado’s decorated résumé and career-best 2018 numbers should attract plenty of interest around the league — a reality that could put considerable pressure on the Yankees (or any other interested party) to finesse a deal sooner rather than later. For now, the club is prepared to enter the 2019 season with hot-hitting third baseman Miguel Andújar, whom Martino speculates would be the “centerpiece” of any trade with Colorado.