ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Yankees and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki have agreed to a contract, pending a physical. The Blue Jays, who released Tulowitzki on December 11, will pay his $20 million salary minus the major league minimum. The Blue Jays will also be on the hook for Tulowitzki’s $14 million salary in 2020 and $15 million in 2021 (with a $4 million buy out), both minus the major league minimum.
Tulowitzki, 34, missed the entire 2018 season recovering from surgery to remove bone spurs in both heels. He posted a weak .678 OPS in 66 games in 2017 and his best years are almost certainly behind him.
The Yankees, however, will be without Didi Gregorius, who underwent Tommy John surgery in October and isn’t expected to return until around the All-Star break. Tulowitzki will serve as a stopgap as the roster is presently constructed. The Yankees, of course, could still sign Manny Machado, as Passan notes that the Tulowitzki signing doesn’t preclude them from such a deal.
Yesterday’s news about the arrest of Pirates closer Felipe Vázquez was pretty disturbing. Today’s update from Jeff Passan of ESPN is even worse.
Vázquez has been charged with solicitation of a child and providing obscene material to minors, and yesterday’s report said that he texted a 15-year-old girl that he would meet up with her after the season for sex. According to police, however, Vázquez had already met with a minor in an attempt to have sex. When she was 13:
Yesterday Vázquez’s attorney, Jay Reisinger, issued a statement saying “We are in the process of reviewing both the Pennsylvania and Florida charging documents, as well as the underlying facts of the matter. At this time, any comment would be premature.”
The Pennsylvania charges referenced involve an alleged statutory sexual assault of a victim who is at least 16 years old by a person who is at least 11 years older than the victim; unlawful contact with a minor; corruption of a minor by a defendant who is 18 years old or older; and indecent assault of a person less than 16 years old. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported last night that the offenses allegedly occurred on Aug. 1, 2018.
Vázquez is still in Pennsylvania, where he was arrested, and is awaiting extradition to Florida. He was denied bail and was characterized by the arraigning judge as a flight risk. Likely because he is a native and citizen of a foreign country with substantial financial resources.
UPDATE: I had missed this previously, but the Pirates issued a statement about all of this yesterday afternoon: