Outfielder Giancarlo Stanton is now a true Yankee after homering in his first at-bat with his new team on Opening Day in Toronto.
As Katie Sharp of River Ave Blues notes, Stanton is the third player since 1961 to homer in his first at-bat as a Yankee on Opening Day, joining Curtis Granderson (2010) and Jimmy Wynn (1977).
And as MLB.com’s David Adler notes, Stanton’s home run went 117.3 MPH off the bat, the hardest-hit opposite field home run in the Statcast era.
You may recall that the Yankees acquired Stanton back in December from the Marlins in exchange for Starlin Castro and minor leaguers Jose Devers and Jorge Guzman.
Update (6:56 PM ET): Stanton homered again, swatting a solo home run to center field off of Tyler Clippard in the top of the ninth inning, boosting the Yankees’ lead to 6-1 over the Blue Jays.
The Braves have announced on Tuesday evening the signing of free agent outfielder Marcell Ozuna. ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that it’s a one-year contract for $18 million.
Ozuna, 29, hit .241/.328/.472 with 29 home runs, 89 RBI, 80 runs scored, and 12 stolen bases in 549 plate appearances for the Cardinals last season. He’s been consistently above-average in each of the past four seasons, which also included a career year in 2017 in which he was worth 6.1 WAR, per Baseball Reference.
It is surprising that Ozuna, a two-time All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner, had to settle for a one-year deal. The Braves are happy he did as he will help make up for some of the offense lost when third baseman Josh Donaldson became a free agent and ultimately signed with the Twins. Ozuna can become a free agent again after the 2020 season but won’t have qualifying offer compensation attached to him, part of the reason why his market may have been slow to develop.
Along with Ozuna, the Braves have signed in free agency this offseason reliever Will Smith, starter Cole Hamels, and catcher Travis d'Arnaud. They re-signed relievers Chris Martin and Darren O'Day, catcher Tyler Flowers, infielder Adeiny Hechavarría, and outfielder Nick Markakis.