Getty Images

Top 25 Stories of 2018

7 Comments

Happy New Year, everyone. Hope you had a pleasant, safe and comfortable New Year’s Eve. Hope you’re enjoying yourself on this fine January 1. Odds suggest most of you are watching football which, hey, is your right, even if I don’t understand why you’d do such a thing. It takes all kinds.

If you’re not watching football, and if you’ve missed some of our countdown of the Top 25 Stories of 2018, here they all are:

25. Matt Harvey’s Weird Year
24. Some International Records Fall
23. Those We Lost
22. Robinson Cano Suspended for PEDs
21. Mound Visits Limited
20. The Baseballs Have Changed
19. Chief Wahoo’s Last Hurrah
18. Albert Pujols Notches His 3,000th Hit
17. Manny Machado Traded Before He Was Traded
16. There Were More Strikeouts Than Hits
15. More Position Players Pitched Than Ever Before
14. Roberto Osuna Shows How Situational Baseball Ethics Can Be
13. A Parade of Stars Retire
12. The Feds Launch an Investigation of International Scouting
11. Baseball Gets Into the Gambling Business
10. Young Stars Land in Hot Water Over Old Tweets
9. A Hall of Fame Class for the Ages
8. Christian Yelich Goes From Unhappy Marlin to MVP
7. Jacob deGrom Wins the Cy Young With Only Ten Wins
6. The A’s Improbable 97-win Year
5. Acuña and Soto Make a Splash in the NL East
4. Shohei Ohtani: Two-Way Threat
3. The Free Agent Freeze 
2. The Rays Give Baseball The Opener
1. Red Sox Win Their Fourth World Series in Fifteen Seasons

 

Hope 2019 treats you well!

Braves sign Marcell Ozuna to one-year, $18 million deal

Marcell Ozuna
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
3 Comments

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.