Mike Napoli may have struggled this season, but he left his mark on the Red Sox organization, writes Rob Bradford of WEEI.com. The slugger hit .242/.350/.436 during his Red Sox tenure with 53 regular season home runs. He also popped two home runs in the 2013 ALCS. In addition to his on-field contributions, Napoli was known for his character. I’ll leave the story telling to Bradford.
Here’s more from the AL East:
- The acquisition of Cliff Pennington by the Blue Jays is all about making final tweaks, writes Mike Wilner of Sportsnet.ca. The club could have survived with Munenori Kawasaki, but Pennington offers a modest upgrade. Not only is he a better defender with more utility, he also has solid splits against left-handed pitching. He’ll also provide insurance for second baseman Devon Travis. The rookie is currently on the disabled list with recurring a shoulder injury.
- The Blue Jays are on a seven game winning streak and just 2.5 games behind the Yankees in the NL East. New acquisition David Price figures to pay “big dividends,” according to Mike Mazzeo of ESPN New York. Price is 2-0 with a 0.60 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 15 innings since the trade including a victory against the Yankees today. The Bronx Bombers may regret passing on Price and other aces. Instead, New York remained committed to their youth movement, refusing to part with Luis Severino or Aaron Judge.