- The Bucs, as expected (and hoped) re-signed Jung Ho Kang for one year, reportedly for $3M base + $2.5M in incentives, redistributing but still equalling the original $5.5M option. The Bucs see him as a 3B and a potential platoon partner with Colin Moran, but not an option at SS, so that hole has yet to be addressed.
- Corey Dickerson, who arrived in Pittsburgh with a rep as a meh gloveman only to be thrown into PNC Park’s massive left field, accepted the challenge and took home his first Golden Glove award. He ranked first among NL left fielders with a .996 fielding % while making one error in 263 chances and setting career highs with seven assists in 122 starts in left. Corey saved 16 defensive runs this year.
|Oneil Cruz 2018 Go Sports|
- MLB.com picked each team's best minor league power prospect. A little surprisingly, the site gave the nod to 20-year-old West Virginia Power SS Oneil Cruz rather than Altoona 1B Will Craig.
- Bill Mitchell of Baseball America has a piece about the standouts in the Arizona Fall Stars game. The emphasis is on the pitching prospects, but he dedicates quite a few lines to Altoona SS Cole Tucker at the end of the article, who picked up some outside knowledge and self-confidence during the event.
- Good news on the injury front: Nicholas Caporoso of Rumbunter reports that RHP Gage Hinsz, one of the Bucs young gun arms, will pitch winter league ball, a quick rebound after losing the season to heart valve replacement surgery.
- Will Leitch of MLB.com selected each team's best FA signing of the 21st century. His Bucco choice: Russ Martin.
- C Jin-de Jhang, who was buried in the organizational depth charts and opted for free agency, reportedly signed with the Giants.
- MLB housekeeping w/a Pittsburgh touch: 2B Dilson Herrera was removed from Cincy's 40-man roster, 3B Andy LaRoche was released by KC (he hasn't stuck with an MLB organization since 2014, so it's mostly a paper move), and OF Alex Dickerson declared for free agency from San Diego, along with IF Chase d'Arnaud of the Giants.
- The Reds and new skipper David Bell have hired Turner Ward, 53, as their hitting coach. You might remember Turner, an ex-Bucco whose engine never stopped running, for crashing through the fence at TRS against the Dodgers in 1998. And yes, he held on to the ball.