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Astros demote Jake Marisnick and his 41/1 K/BB ratio

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Despite some significant strikeout issues and a career .228 average, Jake Marisnick was a valuable role player for the Astros the previous few years and was seemingly in line to take on a bigger role this year with left field up for grabs in the spring. He even homered in the team’s first and third games of the season. That really is all he’s contributed to date, though, and the Astros finally sent him down Tuesday night after he posted a 41/1 K/BB ratio and a .141/.151/.282 line in 85 at-bats.

The 41/1 K/BB ratio is along the lines of what one might expect to see from a particularly inept pitcher. Of players with at least 80 plate appearances this year, only the Rangers’ Drew Robinson has a higher strikeout rate than Marisnick’s 47.1%. No one has a lower walk rate than Marisnick’s 1.1%. It’s a pretty incredible combination.

Of the other 40/1 K/BB ratios in baseball history, only one was achieved by a non-pitcher. The Dodgers’ Andy Kosco struck out 40 times and walked once in 228 plate appearances in 1970. A journeyman outfielder, he was an average hitter for much of his career, but he had a miserable season at age 28 and wasn’t invited back by the Dodgers afterwards.

Marisnick, though, will surely get a chance to improve on his current mark if he can put together a few good weeks in Triple-A. The Astros love his defense, and he’s been a strong outfield option against lefties in the past. In the meantime, they’ll probably want to take a look at J.D. Davis, who could be an upgrade over Evan Gattis in the DH spot after hitting .407/.460/.610 in 123 at-bats in Triple-A.

Fox, MLB sign broadcast rights extension through 2028

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FOX Sports and Major League Baseball announced a few minutes ago that they have agreed to a multi-year broadcast rights extension. The deal keeps Fox as the lead MLB rights holder, and home of the World Series, All-Star Game and a good chunk of the playoffs through at least 2028.

While the press release does not announce the financial terms, Bob Nightengale of USA Today is reporting that it will pay Major League Baseball about 30-40% more than the previous contract. While ratings are not what they used to be, it would seem that the eyeballs Fox is getting are more valuable to it.

UPDATE: That bump is actually even bigger:

For the time being, things will look very much like they do now. Starting in 2022, there will be more games broadcast. There are no specifics about how many more. The release says “FOX Sports will also expand its digital rights,” but again, no specifics on what that means, exactly.

FOX Sports has been a baseball rights-holder since 1996 and has been the exclusive national non-cable rights holder since 2001. That’s gonna continue for at least another decade.