Jimmy Rollins: Mets’ future “looks pretty bright”

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Jimmy Rollins made a name for himself with his play on the field helping the Phillies overcome the Mets in the NL East in 2007 and ’08 and also trash talking the division rivals. Prior to the 2007 season, he declared the Phillies “the team to beat” in the division, and he was eventually proven right when the Phillies toppled the Mets in historic fashion in the final three weeks of the season. As a result, Rollins became a villain in the eyes of the Mets and their fans.

So it came as a bit of a surprise to hear what he said Saturday about the Mets. Via ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick:

“This was my No. 1 landing spot,” Rollins said from Los Angeles’ spring training camp, “and I considered the Mets to be No. 2. They have some arms over there — oh my gosh.”

Rollins said about playing the Mets last season, “that team wasn’t that bad”. He added, “when you look to the future there, it looks pretty bright.”

Rollins saying the Mets were his “No.2 ” is interesting as the Mets had interest in trading for Rollins but backed off after it was believed he wouldn’t waive his 10-and-5 rights for them.

The Dodgers acquired the 36-year-old Rollins in a trade with the Phillies in December, sending away pitchers Zach Eflin (acquired from the Padres in the Matt Kemp trade) and Tom Windle. Rollins finished the 2014 season with a respectable .243/.323/.394 slash line along with 17 home runs, 55 RBI, and 28 stolen bases.

Marlins give Don Mattingly two-year extension

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The Marlins have announced that they have inked manager Don Mattingly to a two-year contract extensions. There’s a third year in the form of a mutual option.

Mattingly is finishing up the final year of the four-year contract he signed with the Marlins prior to the 2016 season. He’s 272-364 in that period and the club has lost 99 games already this season. The current bad run, however, obviously corresponds with a massive rebuild the team began undertaking following the 2017 season and the team’s change in ownership. Mattingly has not had much to work with over the past two seasons but he has likewise, largely, kept the team on as even a keel as one could hope under the circumstances. He has certainly impressed the Marlins’ brass enough to take the unusual step of keeping on a manager they inherited from a previous ownership and front office group.

In other news, the Marlins also announced a two-year contract extension for shortstop Miguel Rojas valued at $10.25 million. There’s a vesting option for a third year. The deal buys out Rojas’ final year of arbitration eligibility and one year of free agency, plus that option.

Rojas, 30, is hitting .285/.335/.383 (OPS+ 92) this year.