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Avisail Garcia benched for not running out a ground ball during a spring training game

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White Sox manager Rick Renteria benched Avisail Garcia after the outfielder failed to run out a ground ball in the top of the first inning of Wednesday’s Cactus League game against the Brewers, Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times reports.

After the game, Garcia took full responsibility. He said, “One hundred percent. I always understand Ricky. I didn’t run, it’s my fault.” He added context, saying, “I didn’t see the ball. And then I saw it and was surprised, and I was like ‘damn.’ That’s when I run. Everyone makes mistakes. You have to be honest with yourself. You can’t lie to yourself. I didn’t run, they take me out, that’s it.”

Van Schouwen mentions in his article that Renteria is a stickler for running out ground balls. Cody Asche was pulled from a game last season in Kansas City when he didn’t run out a dropped third strike.

Garcia, 26, had a breakout season for the White Sox last year, batting .330/.380/.506 with 18 home runs, 80 RBI, and 75 runs scored in 561 plate appearances. It would be a shame if Garcia were to suffer an injury like a pulled hamstring running out a batted ball that is an out 99 percent of the time, especially in a meaningless spring training game. Players who don’t hustle are smart. Work smarter, not harder.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.