A.J. Burnett likely to pitch next year


A.J. Burnett just suffered through an awful season during which he dropped many comments suggesting that he’ll retire. But it appears now, however, that he’s having a change of heart: Jon Heyman reports that “people close to” A.J. Burnett believe he’ll pitch in 2015.

It’s not like he doesn’t have a guaranteed paycheck. He has a player option worth $12.75 million with the Phillies, so not pitching would be giving money away, really. And while it was not a good season — he posted a 4.59 ERA and a 190/96 K/BB ratio in 213 and two-thirds innings — he’s still a durable innings eater.



Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.