Sammy Sosa: “The Cubs know where to find me”

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Sammy Sosa wasn’t invited to Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday party Wednesday and the former MVP agrees with me that it was a petty move by the Cubs.

Sosa talked to Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes about the situation, saying:

I think there is something that has to be resolved. If there is something to clarify, we will sit down and clear it up. Time has given me the maturity to reflect upon many things, including knowing that one side doesn’t have to be right all the time.

I should have been there; I would have liked to have been there. The Cubs know where to find me, and I hope to have the chance to clear up any misunderstanding.

“Misunderstanding” is an odd way to describe why the Cubs don’t want Sosa around, but then again the notion that the Cubs need him to “apologize” before he’s allowed back into the franchise’s good graces seems similarly silly.

He’s one of the best players in Cubs history and hit nearly 300 home runs at Wrigley Field. Pretending none of that happened is absurd.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.