Martín Prado, a 14-year veteran has announced his retirement. It was reported last fall that he was strongly considering hanging it up, but he was presumably waiting out the offseason to make sure no one gave him a call.
Prado hit a mere .233/.265/.294 with two home runs and 15 RBI over 104 games and a -1.3 WAR with the Marlins in 2019. He’s 36 and that was his third straight year of decline. It was probably time for him to say goodbye to life as an active player and hello to coaching or front office work or whatever else he feels like doing.
Which is not to take away from what was a pretty spiffy career.
Prado broke into the bigs with Atlanta in 2006 and was a full-time player from 2009 through 2016 for the Braves, Diamondbacks, Yankees and Marlins. In his best season, 2012, he posted a 5.4 WAR while hitting .301/.359/.438 while stealing 17 bases and playing excellent defense at third base. He had another 5 WAR season in 2010, the year of his only All-Star selection. He finishes his career with a line of .287/.335/.412 and over 1,500 hits. Not too shabby.
Happy trails, Martín. At least until the Braves or Marlins or someone hires you as a coach.
Matt Spiegel of 670 The Score Chicago heard from a source that Major League Baseball executives have been discussing a 100-game season that would begin on July 1 and conclude on October 15. It would essentially pick up the second half schedule, eliminating the All-Star Game while hosting the World Series at a neutral warm-weather stadium — ideally Dodger Stadium.
In the event the Dodgers, who won 106 games last year, made it all the way through the playoffs, the World Series would be hosted in Anaheim or San Diego. The earlier rounds of the playoffs would be played in the cities of the teams involved, which might be tough since the postseason would extend into November.
Spiegel went on to describe this vision as “an absolute best case scenario,” and that’s accurate. In order for the regular season to begin on July 1, the players would need to have several weeks if not a full month prior to get back into playing shape — more or less an abbreviated second spring training. And that would mean the U.S. having made significant progress against the virus by way of herd immunity or a vaccine, which would allow for nonessential businesses to resume operations. The U.S., sadly, is faring not so well compared to other nations around the world for a variety of reasons, but all of which point to a return to normalcy by the summer seeming rather unlikely.
Regardless, the league does have to plan for the potential of being able to start the regular season this summer just in case things really do break right and offer that opportunity. Commissioner Rob Manfred has stated multiple times about the league’s need to be creative, referring to ideas like playing deep into the fall, changing up the location of games, playing without fans in attendance, etc. This rumor certainly fits the “creative” mold.