Cameron Maybin
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Indians sign Cameron Maybin

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The Indians broke spring training with an outfield that one could, charitably, describe as “suspect.” Yesterday, on Opening Day, they got punched in the mouth, with the outfield combining to go 1-for-10 on the afternoon. Today they went out and signed free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin to a minor league deal.

I’m guessing there is not a cause and effect relationship here — the Indians might’ve had the ball rolling on Maybin days ago — but that did happen and now this has happened, so we at least have some fun correlation.

Maybin went to spring training with the Giants, got arrested for a DUI, hit .163 with no power in 48 spring plate appearances and then got cut. Cut by a Giants team, mind you, that opened yesterday with an outfield which, I am fairly certain, consisted of conscripts drawn from the left field bleachers five minutes before first pitch.

Which is to say that this transaction is awash with promise and speaks well of everyone’s skills and everyone’s roster.

God bless you, Cleveland Indians.

 

Madison Bumgarner is reportedly asking for a nine-figure deal

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Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that free agent pitcher Madison Bumgarner is asking for a nine-figure deal.

Your first impression of that may be “what? how?” A lot of that, however, is probably bound up in your understandable feeling that Bumgarner is too old to get that kind of scratch. But then you remember that, oh wait, he’s somehow still only 30 years-old. Indeed, he’s only ten months older than Zack Wheeler, who just nabbed a five-year, $118 million deal from Philly.

Bumgarner, obviously, has much more mileage on the odometer than Wheeler does, and he’s not the ace he was a few years ago, but he’s coming off a fine year, having put up a solid 3.90 ERA and 203/43 K/BB ratio over 207.2 innings in 2019. He would be a fine addition to the top — or at last near the top — of a contender’s rotation.

The White Sox, Twins, Cardinals, Reds, Braves, Padres, and Yankees have all been mentioned among possible landing spots. Figure his market to heat up a good bit once Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg sign and some of those contenders start looking for fallback options.