The Brewers and Pirates got involved in a nasty brawl yesterday afternoon in Pittsburgh after outfielder Carlos Gomez flipped his bat on a triple, which ticked off starter Gerrit Cole. Martin Maldonado was right in the middle of the skirmish and landed a punch on Travis Snider, who showed up to the ballpark today with a shiner and a cut under his left eye. MLB will issue punishments in the coming days, but Snider’s teammate, Russell Martin, still wants Maldonado to see his comeuppance.
This, of course, will never happen, but it’s clear that emotions are still running high here. Anyway, here’s what Maldonado had to say about Martin’s challenge:
The Pirates will play the Brewers in Milwaukee for a three-game series beginning on May 13. This likely isn’t the last we have heard of this situation.
The Brewers reportedly signed third baseman Mike Moustakas to a one-year, $10 million contract on Sunday. While the deal is not yet official, MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports that the Brewers plan to give Moustakas a look at second base during spring training. If all goes well, he will be the primary second baseman and Travis Shaw will stay at third base.
The initial thought was that Moustakas would simply take over at third base for the more versatile Shaw. Moustakas has spent 8,035 of his career defensive innings at third base, 35 innings at first base, and none at second. In fact, he has never played second base as a pro player. Shaw, meanwhile, has spent 268 of his 4,073 1/3 defensive innings in the majors at second base and played there as recently as October.
This is certainly an interesting wrinkle to signing Moustakas, who is a decent third baseman. He was victimized by another slow free agent market, not signing until March last year on a $6.5 million deal with a $15 million mutual option for this season. That option was declined, obviously, and he ended up signing for $5 million cheaper here in February as the Brewers waited him out. Notably, Moustakas did not have qualifying offer compensation attached to him this time around.
Last season, between the Royals and Brewers, the 30-year-old Moustakas hit .251/.315/.459 with 28 home runs and 95 RBI in 635 plate appearances.