Kyle Tucker, Astros go to salary arbitration with $2.5M gap

Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – All-Star outfielder Kyle Tucker went to salary arbitration with the World Series champion Houston Astros on Wednesday, asking for $7.5 million rather than the team’s $5 million offer.

The $2.5 million gap matched the largest among 33 players who exchanged proposed salaries with their teams last month. The case was heard by John Stout, Fredric Horowitz and Jules Bloch, who are holding their decision until after additional cases.

Tucker, 26, hit .257 with 30 homers, a career-best 107 RBIs and 25 stolen bases last year after batting .294 with 30 homers and 92 RBIs in 2021. He had a $764,200 salary last year and was eligible for arbitration for the first time.

Astros right-hander Cristian Javier remains scheduled for a hearing. Also eligible for the first time, Javier has asked for a raise from $749,100 to $3.5 million and has been offered $3 million.

Players and teams have split four decisions thus far. All-Star pitcher Max Fried ($13.5 million) lost to Atlanta and reliever Diego Castillo ($2.95 million) was defeated by Seattle, while pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Marlins.

Decisions also are pending for Tampa Bay relievers Colin Poche and Ryan Thompson, and for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Also Wednesday, utilityman Dylan Moore and the Seattle Mariners finalized a three-year contract worth $8,875,000, avoiding a hearing.

Sixteen additional players are eligible for arbitration and hearings are scheduled through Feb. 17.

MLB homer leader Pete Alonso to IL with bone bruise, sprain in wrist

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Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH — The New York Mets will have to dig out of an early-season hole without star first baseman Pete Alonso.

The leading home run hitter in the majors will miss three-to-four weeks with a bone bruise and a sprain in his left wrist.

The Mets placed Alonso on the 10-day injured list Friday, retroactive to June 8. Alonso was hit in the wrist by a 96 mph fastball from Charlie Morton in the first inning of a 7-5 loss to Atlanta on Wednesday.

Alonso traveled to New York for testing on Thursday. X-rays revealed no broken bones, but the Mets will be missing one of the premier power hitters in the game as they try to work their way back into contention in the NL East.

“We got better news than it could have been,” New York manager Buck Showalter said. “So we take that as a positive. It could have been worse.”

New York had lost six straight heading into a three-game series at Pittsburgh that began Friday. Mark Canha started at first for the Mets in the opener. Mark Vientos could also be an option, though Showalter said the coaching staff may have to use its “imagination” in thinking of ways to get by without Alonso.

“I’m not going to say someone has to step up and all that stuff,” Showalter said. “You’ve just got to be who you are.”

Even with Alonso in the lineup, the Mets have struggled to score consistently. New York is 16th in the majors in runs scored.

The team also said Friday that reliever Edwin Uceta had surgery to repair a torn meniscus in his left knee. Uceta initially went on the IL in April with what the team called a sprained left ankle. He is expected to be out for at least an additional eight weeks.

New York recalled infielder Luis Guillorme and left-handed reliever Zach Muckenhirn from Triple-A Syracuse. The Mets sent catcher Tomás Nido to Triple-A and designated reliever Stephen Nogosek for assignment.

Nogosek is 0-1 with a 5.63 ERA in 13 games this season.