Let’s all just stare at Kris Bryant’s numbers for a while

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In preparation for 23-year-old Cubs uber-prospect Kris Bryant’s long-awaited MLB debut this afternoon let’s all just stare at his final minor-league numbers, which were compiled in 181 total games spent mostly at Double-A and Triple-A:

– .327 batting average
– .426 on-base percentage
– .667 slugging percentage
– 55 home runs
– 49 doubles
– 107 extra-base hits
– 152 RBIs
– 147 runs scored
– 18 stolen bases
– 99 walks
– 206 strikeouts

For those curious, here are the highest OPS totals by a 23-year-old third baseman since 1960:

1.008 – Troy Glaus, 2000
1.004 – Ryan Braun, 2007
.998 – Miguel Cabrera, 2006
.965 – Gary Sheffield, 1992
.923 – Scott Rolen, 1998
.912 – David Wright, 2006
.889 – Evan Longoria, 2009
.885 – Aramis Ramirez, 2001
.878 – Eric Chavez, 2001
.870 – Dick Allen, 1965

Based on the incredible hype attached to Bryant a lot of people will probably be disappointed if he turns into, say, the next Troy Glaus instead of the next Mike Schmidt, but either way I’m just glad to have all the hot takes about service time manipulation put away until the next great prospect is ready for a call-up.

My gut-feel prediction for Bryant’s career is that he’ll hit for crazy power, post good but not great batting averages because of high strikeout rates, and make 10 or so All-Star teams.

Japanese Baseball to begin June 19

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Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.

The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.

The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.

In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.