Congratulations to Matt Harvey, who capped off a successful comeback from Tommy John surgery by pitching for the National League Champion Mets in the World Series. (Never mind that Terry Collins will probably be answering questions about leaving Harvey in for the ninth inning of Game 7 longer than he’s been asked about letting Johan Santana throw 134 pitches in his 2012 no-hitter.)
The American League award is generating some controversy, mainly because there’s no publicly available criteria for determining who should win it. Alex Rodriguez had an amazing year, especially considering his age and that he’d missed better than a year and a half due to injury and a PED suspension. But I don’t see why a player should be able to win an award for coming back from a PED suspension, no matter how great his season was (or how unjust the PED suspension was.)
Raise your hand if you picked the Detroit Tigers for Prince Fielder‘s eventual landing spot for 2012 and beyond.
Detroit reportedly agreed to a nine-year, $214 million contract with the 27-year-old slugger. The average annual value of the deal is $23.8 million, though I wouldn’t be shocked if it was backloaded. Fielder certainly makes up for the loss of Victor Martinez and should help the Detroit offense for the next few years, but I have to wonder if they committed too many dollars and too many years.
It’s the middle of January, and most of the free agents left on the market at this point are aging stars who might be contemplating retirement and reserves. But there’s still one star slugger available, if you can meet his asking price.
While Fielder was reportedly hoping for an 8- to 10- year contract when he hit the free agent market, it’s beginning to look like he might accept less. ESPN’s Buster Olney reported a rumor that Fielder may have to settle for a six-year deal with an opt-out clause that would let him re-enter the free agent market again after three seasons.
Prince Fielder blasted a three-run homer off of C.J. Wilson to lead the NL to victory in last night’s All-Star Game, then immediately came out of the game (seemingly so he could be interviewed by a FOX sideline reporter.)
I think it would have been more fun to see if Fielder could have hit another homer the next time he came up, but Bruce Bochy wanted to be sure everybody got to play. There was enough lineup-shuffling that 41 of 42 position players and 19 of 26 pitchers got into the game, if I kept accurate count. I understand the sentiment, but I’d rather see a return to the old days when starters played most of the game.
For all the fuss about players skipping out on the All-Star Game, 79 of the 84 that were selected made the trip to Arizona. Chipper Jones and Alex Rodriguez just had surgery, and CC Sabathia was a last-minute replacement who had to be immediately replaced himself because he started on Sunday. That just leaves Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera. I’m sure both players did benefit from a three-day mental and physical break. I’m sure that the 79 players that went to the All-Star Game would have benefited as well. Jeter and Rivera are often looked up to as examples of what baseball players should be like, but in this instance I’m glad more didn’t follow in their footsteps.
If you haven’t had your fill of All-Star Games, MLB Network will be showing the Triple-A All-Star Game tonight. If you just want to see regular baseball, SNY is showing the Brooklyn Cyclones game.