The Colorado Rockies avoided arbitration with All-Star center fielder Charlie Blackmon, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $14 million, according to a report from FanRag Sports.
Blackmon, 31, who will be eligible for free agency after the 2018 season, earned $7.3M last season.
Blackmon finished fifth in National League MVP voting after winning the NL batting title with a .331 average, leading the majors in hits (213), runs scored (137), triples (14) and total bases (383) on his way to earning a second straight Silver Slugger Award.
Suspensions Handed Out For Padres/Rockies, Yankees/Red Sox Brawls
This past Wednesday featured a couple pretty good basebrawls.
Perdomo threw the glove more accurately than the pitch. pic.twitter.com/sPCeYzXA99
— Mark Suleymanov (@TheMARKOut1) April 11, 2018
Nothing like a good baseball fight. If you’re not a fan of them, you’re not a true fan of baseball.
This tweet has aged well.
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) April 12, 2018
Let’s recap briefly the series of events that led up to both fights. Prior to Rockies third baseman and All-Star Nolan Arenado charging the mound at Padres starting pitcher Luis Perdomo, there had been a total of six players hit by pitches in the two teams’ meetings this season- but only one Rockie.
HBPs in Padres-Rockies this year:
April 2: A.J. Ellis (Chad Bettis)
April 3: Christian Villanueva (Scott Oberg)
April 4: Jose Pirela (Jon Gray)
April 10: Manuel Margot (Oberg)
Today: Trevor Story (Luis Perdomo), Hunter Renfroe (German Marquez)
— Dennis Lin (@dennistlin) April 11, 2018
Perdomo threw behind Arenado leading off the bottom of the third, and Arenado was having none of it. He immediately charged the mound, Perdomo threw his glove, missed, and Arenado nearly connected on a solid right. Arenado and Perdomo were ejected, as well as three other players.
On Friday, suspensions for that brawl were announced:
Obviously, this hurts the Rockies much more than it does the Padres. Arenado is a guy you want in your lineup. He’s one of the best players in the game. Him missing five games is way more significant than Perdomo- who’s honestly not that good- missing essentially what is one start.
Now for the main event. In Wednesday’s game at Fenway which followed a 14-1 spanking by Boston to New York the previous evening, tensions started to boil in the third inning when Yankees first baseman Tyler Austin slid with his spikes up into the heel of Red Sox shortstop Brock Holt:
Here's Tyler Austin's slide from earlier. Spikes come up a bit, but he hardly made contact with Holt. He slides through the base. His job is to break up the play. He did his job and he didn't hurt anyone. No malintent there.#Yankees #RedSoxpic.twitter.com/E5c6FwqpBe
— Gary Phillips (@GaryHPhillips) April 12, 2018
The benches emptied, but it was very brief, and no punches were thrown. Austin wasn’t thrown at in his next at-bat, which appeared to had been the end of it. For Red Sox reliever Joe Kelly, he drilled Austin in the back in the top of the seventh, which Austin didn’t like. Kelly challenged him to come to the mound, Austin obliged, and Fenway became a fighting frenzy.
Austin and Kelly were both ejected, as well as Yankees third base coach Phil Nevin.
One day later, suspensions were handed down, with only Austin and Kelly receiving them:
— Guerin Austin (@guerinaustin) April 12, 2018
With additional fines for players on the disabled list who came onto the field:
Joe Kelly and Tyler Austin are each appealing their suspensions. Also fined in the brawl were Red Sox manager Alex Cora and Yankees third base coach Phil Nevin, Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia and SS Xander Bogaerts, IF Marco Hernandez and 2B Dustin Pedroia of the Red Sox.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) April 12, 2018
Austin and Kelly both plan on appealing their suspensions.
Since Wednesday (five days ago), Austin hasn’t appeared in a game, while Kelly has pitched in two games.
Rockies Lock Up Charlie Blackmon Through Potentially 2023
Charlie “Chuck Nazty” Blackmon is staying put in Colorado for a while.
On Wednesday, the Rockies announced that they had agreed on a six-year deal with their leadoff hitter which could keep him in Colorado until 2023.
All-Star. Silver Slugger. Batting Champion. Leader. Rockie.
We have agreed to terms with Charlie Blackmon on a six-year contract, including two player options, which could keep him with the club through the 2023 season. pic.twitter.com/OYq6ruJhQR
Blackmon, the reigning National League batting champion, signed a $14 million deal this offseason to avoid arbitration, and would’ve been a free agent after the season.
Through 2019-22, Blackmon will make $21 million per year, and $10 million in 2023.
Charlie Blackmon becomes just the 4th position player to sign a multi-year extension that will pay him at least $10 million at the age of 37 or older, joining Yadier Molina, Adrian Beltre, and Ben Zobrist. #Rockies
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) April 4, 2018
The final two years on Blackmon’s new deal are player options. Assuming he exercises both of them, he’ll make a minimum of $108 million through 2023, with incentives that could bump it up to $116 million.
“I’m very proud,” said Blackmon. “It’s really hard to play in the big leagues. It’s very hard. For that reason, I think there are a lot of very talented guys that struggle to get the at-bats or the playing time that they need to reach their potential.
“I’ve been thankful enough to have those at-bats and be able to play enough baseball and keep getting better, and learning more about my body and how to play the game is important. That’s part of what drives me.”
Blackmon, 31, led the majors with 213 hits, 14 triples, 387 total bases, and 137 runs scored last year, while hitting .331/.399/.601 with 37 home runs and 104 RBIs.
Rockies Sign Closer Wade Davis To Record-Setting Contract
The likelihood that free agent Greg Holland will return to the Colorado Rockies in 2018 just got much lower.
On Friday, the Rockies officially signed right-handed closer Wade Davis to a three-year, $52 million deal. At an average annual salary of $17.3 million, this sets a new record for a relief pitcher, breaking the previous mark of $17.2 million after Aroldis Chapman signed a five-year, $86 million deal with the New York Yankees last December.
According to MLB.com’s Thomas Harding, Davis will earn $16 million in 2018, $18 million in 2019, and $17 million in 2020. His deal also includes a $15 million vesting player option for a fourth season, which has a $1 million buyout.
There’s no denying that Davis is one of the most elite relief pitchers in all of baseball; some could argue he’s the most dominant. Since 2014, in 244 games (all relief appearances), he’s posted a 1.45 ERA and 0.95 WHIP. In addition, he failed to allow a home run in the 2014 and 2016 seasons in a combined 115 1/3 innings.
Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich weighed in on his new prized fireballer:
“He’s (Davis) a guy who’s taken very seriously when he comes into the game. If you’re the opposition and you see Wade Davis coming in, just like Greg Holland and other top closers, those guys are taken seriously. The other team knows that they have it in for them to try to win that game that night.
The signing of Davis continues a busy offseason for Colorado as far as their bullpen goes, as they signed right-hander Bryan Shaw and re-signed left-hander Jake McGee to identical three-year deals earlier this month. Once again, with Davis at the helm now, it’s highly unlikely that 2017 National League save leader Greg Holland- who had 41- will return to the Rockies next year.
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