Pretty fun family weekend ahead, with a little “Disney on Ice” action tonight, a little Daddy-Daughter Dance tomorrow night, and then a family-style Super Bowl party on Sunday. Not what a weekend would have looked like even just a few years ago, but I’m legitimately excited.
Until then …
- Amidst all the spending on a robust free agent market this year, one large market club has been notably quiet. The only team in baseball not to sign a free agent this offseason is not some small market penny-pincher … it’s the New York Yankees. Although they’ve got a solidly-built club and a huge payroll as it is, I don’t think you could argue that they could have stood to add, at a minimum, a quality starting pitcher this offseason. But, perhaps with an eye toward the luxury tax cap getting a bump up next year when the current CBA is renegotiated, the Yankees could conceivable go under the cap in 2017, resetting their penalty to a much lower rate, and then go spend crazy in 2018, when the free agent market once again projects to be incredible.
- To that end, Jeff Passan writes about the Yankees’ uncharacteristically non-spendthrift offseason and puts it in the context of one specific future free agent target: Bryce Harper. Indeed, Passan hears that the luxury tax cap is expected to jump from $189 million to over $200 million, which could give the Yankees a shot to go under it in 2017. Even if they don’t, Passan seems to think the Yankees are already squirreling money away to take a run at Harper, who’ll be just 26 at the time he reaches free agency before the 2018 season. His contract, assuming he’s healthy and hasn’t fallen off the map, will probably exceed $400 million, leaving the vast majority of teams unable to compete in the bidding. It wouldn’t shock me to see that it’s Yankees versus Dodgers, and every other team just has to sit back. I really can’t wait to watch that all play out.
- The Carribean Series is going on right now (check out this inside-the-park homer from earlier in the week if you’re hankerin’ for baseball clips), and there’s an incredible story coming out of Venezuela’s match-up with Cuba: not just brothers playing against each other, but brothers who haven’t seen each other in five years playing against each other (USA Today). Adonis Garcia is a utility man for the Braves, and Jose Adolis Garcia is a Cuban prospect.
- You may recall that the Cubs lost their minor league hitting coordinator to the Rangers, who hired Anthony Iapoce to be their new hitting coach. It was a heck of a promotion, and all you can do is be happy for the guy, knowing that he was so good that the Rangers wanted to poach him. Hopefully the systems in place that brought him to the Cubs continue to operate well and churn out more talent like that. There’s a great article out of Dallas on Iapoce, with tons of quotes from Jason McLeod. Good for Iapoce to get this shot, but boy does it suck to lose him.
- Over at Baseball Is Fun, the Jose Bautista bat flip is now a baseball card. And Michael looks at the time El Duque tried to throw consecutive eephus pitches to Alex Rodriguez. It … did not work.
- Call me too suspicious, but I don’t think this dog is actually wearing that Cubs bandana. Not just because of how it looks, but also because that dog looks way too chill to have been forced to wear a bandana.
- Soon … (lots of ellipses) …
Ahhh … pic.twitter.com/LvMIdhGXjV
— Brett Taylor (@BleacherNation) February 5, 2016