A.J. Pollock open to the idea of signing an extension with the Diamondbacks

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Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports that outfielder A.J. Pollock would be willing to listen if the Diamondbacks approached him about signing a contract extension. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported on Friday that GM Dave Stewart considers Pollock “a big, big piece of what we’re trying to do.”

Pollock, 27, has put up terrific numbers while manning center field for the Diamondbacks this season. He’s hitting .312/.365/.474 with 12 home runs, 50 RBI, 77 runs scored, and 28 stolen bases while playing above-average defense in the outfield.

Pollock is earning $519,500 this season and will become eligible for arbitration for the first time after the season. He’ll be due a significant pay raise. The Diamondbacks are likely hoping a contract extension gives them a discount over what they would be expected to pay Pollock over three years of arbitration eligibility, and they may try to cover at least one potential post-free agency season as well, which would start in 2019.

Heyman also reported on Friday that Stewart wants to make first baseman Paul Goldschmidt “a lifetime Diamondback”, so they may be working on more than one contract extension.

Anthony Rizzo to wear walking boot for five to seven days

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Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo suffered what appeared to be an awful injury during Sunday’s game against the Pirates, twisting his ankle while attempting to field a bunt. An MRI revealed that he has a lateral sprain of his right ankle, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Rizzo will wear a walking boot for five to seven days before being reevaluated.

Given that there are only two weeks left in the regular season, it seems doubtful Rizzo would be able to return to aid the Cubs’ NL Wild Card chase. The club entered Monday leading the second Wild Card by a game over the Brewers.

Rizzo, 30, is batting .289/.404/.516 with 26 home runs, 93 RBI, and 88 runs scored in 592 plate appearances on the year. Victor Caratini started at first base for Monday’s game against the Reds. The Cubs may also use Ian Happ, Willson Contreras, and Jonathan Lucroy at first base while Rizzo is out.