If you’re wondering why the Bullets are later today, it’s because BA’s top 100 prospect list was revealed last night, and got the morning billing.
- Those reports about Emilio Bonifacio having turned down big league offers to take a minor league deal with the Cubs? He tells Cubs.com that’s bogus. Instead, it was simply a matter of the Cubs telling Bonifacio that he had a very good chance of making the team, and him deciding that the other options out there looked a little tougher to make the squad. Obviously you’d love it if Bonifacio was just so ga-ga about joining the Cubs that he turned down dozens of big league offers in favor of a minor league deal with the Cubs, but let’s be reasonable. He was suddenly a free agent at a crossroads in his career, and his number one focus had to be finding a place where he could keep playing in the big leagues. Mission accomplished.
- In discussing his hope this year that he’ll get a chance to face more lefties, rather than be in a strict platoon, Nate Schierholtz points out that the Cubs didn’t have many lefties in camp last year to help get the lefty batters ready (Cubs.com). That’s one of those subtle things you don’t think about – if you want to take live BP against a lefty, you’ve got to have a quality lefty to face. And they’re trying to get ready for the season/make the team/whatever, too, so it can’t just be all about the batter. The lefty situation is a little better this year, I suppose.
- Rick Renteria and Starlin Castro on Starlin Castro. Most of it was touched on yesterday, but there’s your longer-form version if you want it.
- Carrie Muskat says Mike Olt did some work at first base yesterday, with Kris Bryant and Christian Villanueva handling third base. Don’t read too much into it, as there isn’t an obvious back-up at first base in camp, Olt has played a little first before, and versatility never hurts. If Olt doesn’t make the big league team, and heads down to AAA, it’s likely he’ll have to get some of his at bats at first base anyway. The goal remains seeing what he can do at third base, though.
- The Phillies may have pulled a seriously petty dick move on a couple of their draft picks in 2013 who didn’t sign with the team. According to a report from Aaron Fitt, the Phillies notified the NCAA that fifth round pick Ben Wetzler and sixth round pick Jason Monda had violated the “no agent” rule. Amateur players aren’t allowed to have agents, obviously. But, let’s be real: every player who is drafted and is negotiating with a team on a contract uses an “advisor,” who is effectively an agent. It’s understood, and it’s in the best interests of the players. So, to tattle on guys who didn’t sign with you for doing what every other player does … well, if the report is true, the Phillies look pretty shitty.
- The Cubs are the third-worst team in baseball right now, according to Jonah Keri.
- The shortstop position continues to change, as there are fewer and fewer chances in the infield, and more reasons to let guys with decent bats stick at the position.