Blue Jays “have established contact” with Hanley Ramirez

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FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi reports that the Blue Jays front office has “established contact” with the reps for free agent infielder Hanley Ramirez, but then adds that the Jays are “not actively pursuing him now.”

This could be a case of due diligence, or the Blue Jays could actually be considering Hanley for third base. Jose Reyes is locked in at shortstop, though he is injury-prone. Brett Lawrie can play second.

Ramirez seems likely to have a slow-developing market this winter because of his lofty contract demands (thought to be near $100 million) and inconsistent health over the past several seasons. He appeared in just 128 games this past year, 86 games in 2013, and 64 games in 2012. The 30-year-old is a .300/.373/.500 career hitter.

The Astros have also checked in on Hanley, but that probably won’t go anywhere.

The Mariners reportedly have strong interest.

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.