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Justin Bour signs with Japan’s Hanshin Tigers


Free agent first baseman Justin Bour has a new team: the Hanshin Tigers of NPB.

Bour, who will turn 32 in May, spent 2019 with the Angels, playing in only 52 games and posting a line of .172/.259/.364 and hitting 8 homers in 170 plate appearances. He was better before that, of course, spending the 2018 season with the Marlins and Phillies, hitting an aggregate .227/.341/.404 with 20 home runs and 59 RBI in 501 plate appearances. His 2017 was even better, as he smacked 25 homers and posted a .902 OPS (143 OPS+) in 108 games for Miami.

As a corner platoon guy over 30 who is exposed against lefties who is coming off a bad year, it wouldn’t been a tall order for him to land a guaranteed deal for 2020 this winter. However it wouldn’t be hard to see him snapping back into form in Japan, so this is probably a good move for him.

Josh Reddick says he and his Astros teammates have received death threats

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Yesterday Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle spoke to Athletics pitcher Mike Fiers. In the course of the interview, Fiers revealed that he has received death threats for blowing the whistle on the Astros’ cheating. Rob Manfred said last week, before the interview came out, that Major League Baseball would do everything in its power to protect Fiers and his family both when the A’s play in Houston and when they play anyplace else.

Manfred’s pledge of protection is going to need to be expanded, because today the guys on whom Fiers blew the whistle are saying they’ve received death threats as well.

At least Josh Reddick is saying it:

It’s obviously disgraceful for anyone to have to endure this sort of crap. People need to get a grip.