With the Cubs introducing righty Yu Darvish yesterday, Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times covers the key takeaways. Other teams dangled six-year offers of similar value, per Wittenmyer, though it seems that interest at a higher price point simply did not develop. Whether that means the Cubs secured a relative bargain or simply reflects the league’s valuation of an excellent but hardly flawless pitcher, the bottom line is that Darvish represents a major addition to one of the game’s best rosters. Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein says the team was pleasantly surprised to be able to land Darvish at a rate that still kept the overall payroll under the luxury tax line. He also noted that the team will now have limited capacity for taking on salary during the course of the season. While Epstein framed the matter as one of managing the team’s short and long-term spending ability, those comments seemingly indicate that the luxury line is functioning as a soft ceiling this year for yet another top MLB organization.
More from the National League:
- The Marlins have settled on an executive to lead their drive to improve on the revenue side. As MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports, the club has hired Chip Bowers as its new president of business operations. CEO Derek Jeter will oversee Bowers, who comes over from a stint as the chief marketing officer of the NBA’s Golden State Warriors. Elsewhere in Fish Land, Dave Hyde of the Sun Sentinel writes that Jeter ought still be given some room to operate before observers reach conclusions about his tenure atop the team’s operational hierarchy.
- Padres skipper Andy Green struck an optimistic tone in an interesting and wide-ranging discussion entering camp, as Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune writes. Those who’d like to get a sense of where the organization stands will want to read the entire chat. Of particular note, Green says the stance entering camp is that Clayton Richard and Bryan Mitchell already have rotation spots, with Dinelson Lamet and Luis Perdomo in the lead but not assured of a starting role. Otherwise, there’s a lengthy list of potential competitors. Likewise, second base and the outfield figure to be open battlegrounds over the coming weeks.
- It’s often said that arbitration hearings can lead to some tension between players and teams, and it seems that’s just what has happened with righty Mike Foltynewicz and the Braves. As David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes, Foltynewicz left the hearing with some frustrations about how things were handled by the organization. The team ended up winning a case that was held over a spread of just $100K. That said, the 26-year-old indicates that the experience won’t change his approach, telling O’Brien that he’s ready to “go to work and try to make this team better.”