AL Notes: Zunino, Rangers, Apostel, Cole, Boras
By Dylan A. Pursue | November 30, 2019 at 8:45pm CDTThe Rays settled on the gutsy choice to wager on a bounceback from catcher Mike Zunino in 2020, picking to maintain a strategic distance from arb with the previous Gator by means of a $4.5MM bargain while Travis d’Arnaud set out toward more extravagant fields in Atlanta. Zunino has never been what one would call a total hitter, however 2019 spoke to an individual low from a presentation outlook, with the previous top draftee overseeing just a .165/.232/.312 (45 wRC+) yield through 289 plate appearances. Presently, the probability of a Zunino bounce back at the plate may lay on crafted by hitting mentor Chad Mottola, proposes Josh Tolentino of The Athletic (connect).
As Tolentino notes, Mottola was instrumental in helping d’Arnaud discover hostile consistency and furthermore helped haul shortstop Willy Adames out of an early-season funk in 2019. Zunino’s genuine worth will probably consistently lie with the glove (he recorded 8.3 Fielding Runs Above Average in constrained work in 2019, per Baseball Prospectus), yet an arrival to his 2017 levels (126 wRC+ and 25 homers in 124 games) would absolutely be an invite improvement. The Rays additionally hold a $4.5MM choice on Zunino for the 2021 season.
More notes from around the American League…
The Rangers’ choice to draft two third basemen, Josh Jung and Davis Wendzel, with their main two picks in the 2019 draft persuaded that the fate of that position was well close by, yet the toolsy Sherten Apostel ought not be considered out a long haul answer, opines Levi Weaver of The Athletic. Initially gained nearby Taylor Hearn in a 2018 cutoff time bargain that sent Keone Kela to Pittsburgh, Apostel is probably going to begin 2020 at High-A Down East close by Jung. In spite of his 6’4 edge, authoritative eyewitnesses are bullish about his capacity to stick at the hot corner, and his immense crude power provoked Single-A Hickory supervisor Matt Hagen to credit the 20- year-old Curacao local with “man-kid” quality. Apostel dealt with a .251/.339/.440 slice line and 19 grand slams crosswise over 478 plate appearances between two levels a year ago. Obviously, the position could be tended to by means of a long haul marking this offseason, with our essayists choosing Texas as a reasonable goal with the expectation of complimentary operator Josh Donaldson toward the beginning of November.
While much has been made of Gerrit Cole’s expert association with specialist Scott Boras this offseason, eyewitnesses should observe that Cole recently demonstrated a propensity to coordinate his own fortunes, helps Tracy Ringolsby to remember Baseball America. At the point when Cole was a first-round draftee of the Yankees back in 2008, it was Cole and his dad, as indicated by Ringolsby, who settled on a definitive choice to seek after a university profession at UCLA. Cole’s first-round marking reward that year was relied upon to arrive around $4MM, however the Cole family obviously accepted that the immaterial estimation of instruction to avoid anything related to another opportunity of entering the draft at a higher opening exceeded the advantages of an early payday. Clearly, it doesn’t enroll as news to be reminded that specialists are depended to work for the eventual benefits of their customers, however it might merit considering, given their working history, that the previous Astros expert and his delegates likely have more as a top priority this offseason than unadulterated dollar esteem alone.
Gerrit Cole Houston Astros Mike Zunino Notes Scott Boras Sherten Apostel Tampa Bay Rays Texas Rangers21 remarks