MASN’s Roch Kubatko is reporting that the Orioles have signed outfielder Dexter Fowler to a three-year deal. ESPN’s Buster Olney hears that it’s for “about $35 million”.
Having already forfeited their first round draft pick to sign Yovani Gallardo — which is still not yet official — the Orioles will now forfeit their next-highest pick (#28 overall) for signing Fowler, who turned down a $15.8 million qualifying offer from the Cubs in November.
Fowler, 30 years old in March, hit .250/.346/.411 with 17 home runs (a career-high), 46 RBI, 102 runs scored, and 20 stolen bases with the Cubs this past season. Fowler is expected to handle right field at Camden Yards and will likely be the club’s leadoff hitter.
[graphiq id=”3NQeMnPojyd” title=”Dexter Fowler 2015 Home/Away Batting Splits” width=”640″ height=”523″ url=”https://w.graphiq.com/w/3NQeMnPojyd” link=”http://baseball-players.pointafter.com/l/5355/Dexter-Fowler” link_text=”Dexter Fowler 2015 Home/Away Batting Splits | PointAfter”]
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.