Rays catcher Mike Zunino went on the injured list last month so, in need of catching depth, Tampa Bay acquired catcher Erik Kratz from the Giants in exchange for a player to be named later. Today the Rays activated Zunino so they designated Kratz for assignment.
They should send him back to the Giants as the player named later, right? Let us have some fun, OK?
Kratz, who turns 39 in two weeks, only played in six games for the Rays, making 17 plate appearances and getting one hit. So, um, no, losing him will not be a big deal. And to be honest, the hope that the Giants might take him back as his own Player to be Named Later is thus a super long shot. Still, he can catch, so maybe someone will consider it. It’s hard to catch.
Today the Angels introduced their newest big star, Anthony Rendon, who just signed a seven-year, $245 million contract to play in Orange County.
And it is Orange County, not Los Angeles, Rendon stressed at the press conference. When asked about the Dodgers, who had also been reported to be courting him, Rendon said he preferred the Angels because, “the Hollywood lifestyle . . . didn’t seem like it would be a fit for us as a family.”
What “the Hollywood Lifestyle” means in that context could mean a lot of things I suppose. It could be about the greater media scrutiny Dodgers players are under compared to Angels players. It could mean that he’d simply prefer to live in Newport Beach than, I dunno, wherever Dodgers players live. Pasadena? Pasadena is more convenient to Dodger Stadium than the beach. Who knows. They never did let Yasiel Puig get that helicopter he wanted, so traffic could’ve been a consideration.
But maybe it’s a subtle allusion to political/cultural stuff. Orange County has trended to the left in some recent elections but it is, historically speaking, a conservative stronghold in Southern California. And, based on something else he said in his press conference, Rendon seems to be pretty conscious of geographical/political matters:
A shoutout to the notion of Texas being Trump country and an askance glance at “the Hollywood Lifestyle” of Los Angeles all in the same press conference. That’s a lot of culture war ground covered in one press conference. So much so that I can’t decide if I should warn Rendon that both Texas and Orange County are trending leftward or if I should tell him to stick to sports.