Frank White is still estranged from the Royals

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As a young man, Frank White actually worked on the construction crew that built Kauffman Stadium. A local product, White signed with the Royals in 1970 after a tryout of all things and made it through their local baseball academy. And, of course he went on to enjoy an 18-year career in Kansas City, winning eight gold gloves, a World Series ring and eventually being inducted into the Royals Hall of Fame.

All of which makes this story from Jeff Passan unfortunate. Several years ago the Royals had a falling out with the man who, arguably, is the franchise’s most popular player. As a Royals minor league manager he was passed over for the major league job a couple of times. Later, the team slashed his salary for a community relations/P.R. gig he, like a lot of former players, enjoy in retirement. Finally, he was fired as a Royals broadcaster in part, many suspect, because he was critical of the team. As if being critical of the Royals before this year was unreasonable or something.

As Passan notes, there has been no rapprochement between White and the Royals, not even with the current baseball renaissance in Kansas City.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year, $58.5M deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year, $58.5 million contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, gets $19.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

He spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu was scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.

He would get a $200,000 for winning an MVP award, $175,000 for finishing second in the voting, $150,000 for third, $125,000 for fourth and $100,000 for fifth. Abreu also would get $100,000 for earning World Series MVP and $75,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $75,000 for making the All-Star team and $75,000 for winning a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger.

Abreu gets a hotel suite on road trips and the right to buy a luxury suite for all Astros home games.