PLOUFFE JOINS THE ATHLETICS
Trevor Plouffe agreed to a one year deal with the Athletics to apparently be their third sacker (pending passing the physical of course). The 30 year old infielder, who had spent his entire career with the Twins, was limited to just 84 games last season because of injuries to his rib cage and oblique. His last two healthy seasons, 2014 and 2015, Plouffe has driven in at least 80 runners. However, he’s nothing more than a compiler with a .247/.308/.420 career slash line, numbers that show him to be nothing more than... just a guy.
One would think that the A’s signed Plouffe to be their third baseman. Seems a bit odd on the surface given that the club has Ryon Healy at third already and it’s not like he didn’t have a rockstar rookie season (.305-13-37 with a .861 OPS in just 72 games). If I had to guess, I would assume that Plouffe and Healy play most days on the corners with Yonder Alonso losing playing time at first base as he becomes the bit player. At least that should be the plan after Alonso had another “Alonso season” with a poor .253/.316/.367 line with seven homers in 482 at-bats. Talk about just a guy.
THIS AND THAT
Carter Capps signed a 1-year, $987,500 deal with the Padres. He didn’t pitch last year, Tommy John surgery, but back in 2015 the guys struck out 58 batters, against seven walks, over 31 innings. Tremendous arm if healthy.
Kole Calhoun had core muscle surgery this offseason and he’s progressed to the point that he’s been cleared to return to baseball activities. He should be good to go for Opening Day. The 29 year old outfielder doesn’t stand out in a meaningful way, but he’s a solid producer who is often underrated in the fantasy game. Note that Calhoun had a .348 OBP last season, a career best, and that the past three seasons he’s averaged 20 homers, 72 RBI and 86 runs a season. Solid is as solid does, and the cost is never exorbitant.
Chris Carter hit 41 homers last season with 94 RBI last season. He’s still looking for a team. Carter had a .346 wOBA last year, five points better than Wil Myers and six points better than Chris Davis. Yet, he still is in search of a team.
Greg Holland wants a two year deal from his new club, whoever that might be. He also wants that deal to include an opt out after one year so he can sign with another team for more money if he kills it in 2017. Hey Greg, I want that too, a contract where I hold all the cards. Neither one of us is getting that Greg. Why would a team give you a chance to reestablish your value only to lose you if you do well? Why not just sign a one year deal then? If you pitch poorly you aren’t going to give the money back for year two, are you? Maybe I’m dense, but why would any team agree to this.
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David Ortiz will not be participating in the WBC according to Dominican Republic manager Moises Alou. Folks, give it up. Ortiz is done. He’s retired. If he were to return he would be the biggest fraud of all-time. Would he give back all the gifts he received on his farewell tour?
Brett Pill signed a minor league deal with the Tigers. The 32 year old had a big season last year with a .317-20-86 in the Korean Baseball Organization. He has no value I would think, but he’s always crushed it in the minors as well (check out his career Triple-A slash line of .301/.340/.511).
Albert Pujols had surgery on his foot in December and he’s begun his physical therapy. He may not be ready for Opening Day, at least is what the reports are suggesting, but it wouldn’t be the first time that Pujols healed quicker than reports suggest. The guy has been a rock of stability, through all the years and all the injuries, only once appearing in fewer than 143 games in his 16-year career (he’s been on the field at least 152 times the last three years while averaging 33 homers and 106 RBI).
Ryan Vogelsong agreed to a minor-league deal with the Twins. The 39 year old righty could spot start or work out of the bullpen if he makes the team. Last season, with the Pirates, he looked like a guy who was pretty much washed up with a 4.81 ERA, 1.46 WHIP and a 1.53 K/BB ratio.
Matt Wieters is still looking for a home. With the state of catching, it’s pretty shocking that he’s still sitting out there given that he’s a potential 20-homer bat who plays decent defense. One issue might be his height and how it seems to affect him when framing pitches.
Ray Flowers can be heard Monday/Tuesday and Thursday/Friday, 8 PM EDT, Wednesday 7 PM EDT on SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio (Sirius 210, XM 87). You can also hear Ray Sunday nights at 9 PM EDT PM on the channel talking fantasy sports. Follow Ray’s work at Fantasy Alarm and on Twitter (@baseballguys).