Via the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Hank Schulman:
The Giants and Pablo Sandoval’s representatives have not had any discussions about a contract extension for the third baseman, and general manager Brian Sabean said the club will hold off “as of now.”
Schulman adds on Twitter that Sandoval and his reps want at least five years and $90 million — which is what Giants outfielder Hunter Pence signed for in late September. San Francisco’s front office isn’t ready to commit that kind of money or contract length to a player like Sandoval, whose numbers (and weight) have been so up and down in recent years.
Sandoval entered camp this spring in improved physical shape and has every reason in the world to keep his weight in check. He’s currently scheduled to hit the free agent market five days after the World Series.
The Giants aren’t ruling out an in-season contract extension for the 27-year-old third baseman.
The Blue Jays have released right-handed reliever John Axford from his minor league contract, per an announcement on Saturday. Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi speculates that the move could provide an avenue for the club to rework Axford’s contract, but the Blue Jays have yet to confirm or deny the report.
Axford, 35, was dealt a blow on Thursday after getting diagnosed with a stress reaction in the olecranon bone of his right elbow. Elbow soreness dogged the right-hander through much of his time in camp, and although he was scheduled for a follow-up examination later this spring, a definite return date had not been established.
Prior to the diagnosis, Axford was tabbed for a setup role with the team in 2019. He pitched to mixed results in 2018 (thanks in part to a late-season fracture of his right fibula) with a 5.27 ERA, 4.9 BB/9, and 9.8 SO/9 through 54 2/3 innings with the Blue Jays and Dodgers. Now, however, it’s not certain that he’ll return to the mound this season in any capacity.
Axford isn’t the only reliever the Blue Jays have lost to injury lately, either, as right-handers Ryan Tepera and Bud Norris have been sidelined with right elbow inflammation and forearm fatigue, respectively. Per Davidi, the Blue Jays offered Norris a $100,000 retention bonus to prevent him from opting out of the minor league contract he signed in February.