Marlins drop Jarrod Saltalamacchia just 16 months after giving him $21 million


Last offseason Jarrod Saltalamacchia signed a three-year, $21 million deal with the Marlins. Today the veteran catcher was designated for assignment.

Saltalamacchia is owed $7 million this season and $8 million next season, but the Marlins benched him in favor of rookie J.T. Realmuto very quickly this year and haven’t looked back.

How serious was Miami about parting ways with Saltalamacchia just 16 months after signing him? He was designated for assignment on the same day he returned from paternity leave. Ouch.

He’ll go unclaimed on waivers because no team will want to touch that remaining contract for a 30-year-old catcher who’s hit .209 with a .661 OPS in 123 games since the beginning of last season, but if the Marlins are truly finished with Saltalamacchia he’ll almost surely be able to find a part-time role somewhere. For the Red Sox from 2011-2013 he posted a .763 OPS with 20 homers per 500 plate appearances.

Roger Clemens will be an analyst for ESPN on opening day

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Roger Clemens will be an analyst for ESPN when the defending World Series champion Houston Astros host the Chicago White Sox on opening day.

Clemens made four appearances on last year’s KayRod Cast with Michael Kay and Alex Rodriguez. He will be stepping in on March 30 for David Cone, who will be doing the New York Yankees opener against the San Francisco Giants on YES Network.

“Roger has been sort of a friend of ours for the last year, so to speak, he’s in. He’s been engaged, knowledgeable and really present,” said ESPN Vice President of Production Phil Orlins. “You know, whatever past may be, he’s still tremendously engaged and he really brought that every time he was with us.”

Clemens was a seven-time Cy Young winner but his career after baseball has been tainted by allegations of performance-enhancing drug use. He is a Houston native and pitched for the Astros for three seasons.

Orlins said that with the rules changes and pitch clock, it is important to have a pitcher in the booth with Karl Ravech and Eduardo Perez.

“We don’t feel like we have to have the dynamic of Eduardo with a pitcher, but we certainly think that works. Throw in the added factor of rule changes and it is better to have a batter-pitcher perspective,” Orlins said.

Orlins did not say if this would open the door for future opportunities for Clemens as an ESPN analyst.