Mariners first baseman Danny Valencia entered Sunday’s game against the Rays with a hit in each of his previous seven plate appearances. He went 4-for-4 on Saturday with four singles. On Friday, he walked, hit a three-run home run, doubled, and hit an RBI single.
Valencia made it to nine consecutive plate appearances with a hit, as he singled in his first two trips to the plate on Sunday. He tied the Mariners’ record, joining Raul Ibanez. Valencia couldn’t make it to double-digits as he popped out in his next attempt.
Valencia, 32, came into play Sunday batting a productive .276/.338/.431 with five home runs and 26 RBI in 201 plate appearances this season. The Mariners acquired him from the Athletics early in the offseason. It’s worked out well for the Mariners and for Valencia, who’s a free agent after the season.
Yasiel Puig, unexpectedly, remained unemployed for the entire offseason. But now, a week or so into spring training, it’s appearing as though he may soon have a job. That’s the word from Hector Gomez of Z101, who reports that the Rockies and White Sox have emerged as “frontrunners” to sign the guy.
Puig hit a .252/.302/.475 (92 OPS+) for the Reds before being traded to the Indians. Once in Cleveland his performance improved, however, as he hit .297/.377/.423 (109 OPS+). Definitely a down year overall, and a far cry from the sort of superstar performance he showcased when he first broke into the league, but he’s just 29 and still profiles as an above average big league outfielder, on defense and at the plate.
He’d certainly benefit from playing in the thin air of Colorado. He’d also look pretty spiffy in the White Sox’ lineup, though he’d likely have to assume a platoon role there. Which, given that he as better in that role toward the end of his tenure in Los Angeles, would not be the worst idea. He didn’t like it all that much, but at the moment, he needs to find a job.
Anyway, look for Puig to be off the market soon.