Here are several links from the past week that will make Opening Day a bit more interesting:
- With season three of Game of Thrones and the 2013 regular season having started within one hour of another, Larry Granillo of Baseball Prospectus proposes 10 sigils for current MLB players.
- The Tigers signed Justin Verlander to a seven-year contract extension totaling $180 million. The average annual value — $25.71 million — is the highest ever for a multi-year deal, topping the one that Felix Hernandez signed in mid-February.
- Buster Posey inked a nine-year extension with the Giants valued at $168 million. According to MLB Trade Rumors’ Zach Links, “Posey’s contract covers his three remaining years of arbitration and five years of free agency, plus an option [worth $22 million] that could take care of a sixth free agency year.” Overall, Grant Brisbee of McCovey Chronicles gives the extension a thumbs-up, but briefly wonders why the Giants needed to do the deal now, considering that he was still three years away from free agency:
There’s a great chance Posey makes a lot of money for a little production by the end of it. But that’s not really the point — they’re paying him a premium to make sure he’s around for his 29-through-32 seasons in addition to the 26-through-28 seasons that he was already locked up for. As happy as this deal makes me, I still would have waited a year. But when you’re complaining about too much Buster Posey, you’re kind of an ass. So I won’t.
- Meanwhile, San Francisco’s ownership group extended the contracts of general manager Brian Sabean and skipper Bruce Bochy through the 2016 season.
- Two other noteworthy contract extensions were signed last week: The Cardinals and Adam Wainwright agreed on a five-year deal worth $97.5 million, while the Diamondbacks and Paul Goldschmidt agreed on one worth five years and $32 million, with a team option for 2019 worth $14.5 million.
- The final free agent of consequence, Kyle Lohse, signed a three-year deal with the Brewers worth $33 million.
- RIP Bob Turley, 82. He may have earned the 1958 Cy Young Award while playing for the world-champion Yankees, but Orioles fans will always remember Turley for starting and earning the win in the franchise’s first ever home game four years earlier.
- RIP Gus Triandos, 82. When Turley and Don Larsen were sent to the Bronx after the 1954 season, Triandos was one of the players Baltimore received in return. The catcher spent eight seasons with the Orioles and slugged 142 home runs and was inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame in 1981.
- The Jays sent Ricky Romero, their Opening Day starter for the past two seasons, to their Single-A affiliate in Dunedin, Florida. Beyond the Boxscore’s Andrew Ball explains what prompted Toronto to take such drastic action and why Romero stands to benefit from the demotion.
- Wendy Thurm of Fangraphs says that confusion reigns on the question of whether MLB intends to allow teams to opt out of the current mandatory defined-benefit pension system for non-union employees.
- A re-tear of his shoulder capsule means that Johan Santana has almost certainly thrown his last pitch for the Mets and may not take the mound again, period. Sports Illustrated’s Jay Jaffe believes that the catatrsophic injury has probaly doomed his chances for entry into Cooperstown.
That’s it. Have a walk-off week!
foolish fearless 2013 predictions may be found here.