Nelson Cruz, Adrian Gonzalez named Players of the Month

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Major League Baseball has announced its players, pitchers and rookies of the month for April. So, as has become custom at HBT, we’ll do a post on it, only to not be as interested in following through on it for May through September. As it is:

Players of the month: Nelson Cruz and Adrian Gonzalez

Cruz batted .322 (28-for-87) with three doubles, one triple, 10 home runs, 22 RBI, and 14 runs scored in 22 games. Gonzalez led the majors in slugging (.790) and was the NL leader in home runs (8). He featured a .383 batting average, hit nine doubles, drove in 19 RBI and had  .432 on-base percentage.

Pitchers of the month: Dallas Keuchel and Gerrit Cole

Keuchel had a 3-0 record with a 0.73 ERA and 22 strikeouts in 37.0 innings. Cole was 4-0 in five starts with a 1.76 ERA and 35 strikeouts in 30.2 innings of work.

Rookies of the month: Devon Travis and Alex Guerrero

Travis batted .325 (26-for-80) with six home runs, 19 RBI, 17 runs scored and six doubles. Guerrero, who doesn’t even really have a regular position, hit .423 (11-for-26) with a 1.077 slugging percentage, hit five homers and drove in 13.

Phillies, J.T. Realmuto working on a long term deal

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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that the Phillies “are quietly trying to hammer out” a contract extension with J.T. Realmuto. He says it may take some time to be done — nothing is imminent — but that the sides are working on it.

Realmuto still has one final year of arbitration, and he’s likely to get $10 million or more for 2020 if nothing is done. It sounds as though he and the Phillies are both eager to cement a long term pact, however, that’ll keep him from hitting the free agent market next winter. Salisbury says the deal, once reached, could be for 4-5 years and $20+ million per season. He says an extension would likely not kick in until 2021. He and the club would agree to a separate one-year deal to cover 2020.

Realmuto, who is considered by most to be the top all-around catcher in the game at the moment, will turn 29 before the beginning of the 2020 season. He hit .275/.328/.493 with 25 homers and 83 driven in this past season, winning the Silver Slugger Award and a Gold Glove.