Former MLB star Rusty Staub suffered a medical emergency on a recent flight home from Ireland, the Mets have announced (via ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin on Twitter). That emergency was a heart attack, Mike Puma of the New York Post tweets. The flight was diverted back to Ireland, and Staub is currently in a hospital there. His prognosis is good. Staub, an outfielder and first baseman also known as “Le Grand Orange,” was a key figure in the early years of both the Expos and Mets. After spending his first several years in the big leagues with the Houston Colt .45’s / Astros, he was traded to the Expos in time for their first season in 1969, and he became the franchise’s first star, hitting 29 homers in his first season in Montreal. The Expos later traded him to New York, where he was a key figure on the Mets’ early-’70s teams. He then played several seasons in Detroit before heading briefly back to Montreal and on to Texas before returning to the Mets for his last several years in the league. In 23 seasons, Staub won six All-Star berths and hit 292 homers. Here’s more from the East divisions.
- Reliever and impending free agent Darren O’Day says he would like to re-sign with the Orioles, CSNmidatlantic.com’s Rich Dubroff tweets. The team has reportedly expressed interest in a reunion as well. O’Day will be 33 later this month, perhaps somewhat limiting his earnings potential on the open market, but he’s had a string of excellent seasons for the Orioles and is now finishing what’s been arguably his best year in the bigs — he currently has a 1.54 ERA, 11.3 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in 64 1/3 innings. In a recent Free Agent Stock Watch piece on O’Day, MLBTR’s Jeff Todd noted that O’Day could well command a three-year contract this offseason, perhaps similar to Luke Gregerson’s deal with the Astros.
- Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski hopes Hanley Ramirez will return for 2016 as a more “athletic” player, MLB.com’s Ian Browne writes. Ramirez was bigger than usual in 2015 and was trying to hit for more power. “I did hear that he came in bigger just for the simple fact he was thinking, ’I’m going to be a left fielder or maybe a power guy,'” says Dombrowski. “Sometimes that extra weight doesn’t always translate into what you’re trying to accomplish.” Even though Ramirez will play next season at first base, Dombrowski says the Red Sox aren’t concerned about his home run totals. Ramirez’s first year in Boston was, of course, a very poor one — he hit 19 home runs but produced just a .291 OBP, and he struggled horribly with the transition from the infield to left field. He’s been out since August 26 due to shoulder trouble.