The Kansas City Royals agreed one-year deal with Martin Maldonado

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20 апр 2019 Сб
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SURPRISE , Ariz. (AP) —  giving them a veteran catcher after losing Salvador Perez to a season-ending injury.The deal includes up to $1.4 million in incentives for games caught, according to a person familiar with the terms, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because Maldonado still must pass a physical for the contract to become official.Maldonado spent last season with the Angels and Astros, hitting .225 with nine homers and 44 RBIs in 119 games. But his biggest strength has been his ability to frame pitches and play defense, and his experience should help what is expected to be a young Royals team this season.In fact, Maldonado’s Gold Glove in 2017 broke Perez’s streak of four straight.Perez underwent Tommy John surgery last week after tearing a ligament in his throwing arm during a spring training workout. Perez is expected to remain with the club while rehabbing this season, and the hope is that the six-time All-Star will be ready by next spring.“We move on. That’s the way it is,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “Salvy is going to be with us all year long, he’s going to be there doing his rehab — the rehab is a difficult process. But we have to continue to move forward.”Perez’s injury meant the Royals were poised to enter the season with Cam Gallagher, a defensive-minded career backup Shelby Miller Jersey , and 22-year-old Meibrys Viloria, who has had just 22 big league at-bats.They had also been mulling the use of Frank Schwindel, a college catcher now at first base.But general manager Dayton Moore said he would seek a veteran backstop, whether it was through free agency or a trade. And speculation quickly settled upon the 32-year-old Maldonado, mainly because he was the only veteran that wasn’t already in a major league camp.He broke into the majors with Milwaukee in 2011 and spent his first six years there, before a season-plus with the Angeles. Los Angeles traded him to the Astros last July, and Maldonado helped the club reach the AL Championship Series before losing to the Boston Red Sox.He will have a quick turnaround before opening day.The Royals played the Diamondbacks on Saturday and face the Padres on Sunday, then have split-squad games against the Mariners and Rangers on Monday. But after that, they have just 14 more games before the start of the regular season, including split-squad games next weekend.Kansas City opens the regular season March 28 against the White Sox. The Philadelphia Phillies and New York Mets start their final series of the season Monday night at Citizens Bank Park with the Phillies are still clinging to slim playoff hopes and the Mets playing their best baseball since April.Jake Arrieta (10-9, 3.66 ERA) for the Phillies and Zack Wheeler (11-7, 3.23) for the Mets will be on the mound in the series opener.Despite two consecutive losses Chris Owings Jersey , the Mets are 10-5 in September, and they have taken 10 of the first 16 games against the Phillies this season.Article continues below ...The Phillies, meanwhile, are 30-36 against the National League East this season, even after winning a weekend series against the Miami Marlins. Philadelphia is 6 1/2 games back of the Atlanta Braves in the National League East and five games back in the wild-card race.Arrieta has 18 strikeouts in his last two starts (12 1/3 innings). The veteran right-hander had seven strikeouts in his last start against the Washington Nationals on Tuesday, and Arrieta gave up three runs and three hits in five innings.Arrieta got a no-decision in the game, as the Phillies coughed up a three-run lead in the ninth inning of a 7-6 loss.“It’s obviously not great, especially when we’re trying to catch the team ahead of us,” Arrieta told reporters afterward. “We got to pick it up, and if we don’t, we’re not going to be making the playoffs.”The Phillies are 2-2 since Arrieta’s last start.Arrieta has a 1.94 ERA and a 0.961 WHIP in nine career starts against the Mets. In two starts against them this year, he has allowed one earned run in 13 1/3 innings.Wheeler , who is 3-1 with a 3.10 ERA in nine starts against the Phillies, has faced the Mets’ divisional opponent just once this season. He gave up three runs in 4 2/3 innings on July 9, but the right-hander has been one of the best starters in the NL since then.Wheeler is 9-1 with a 1.67 ERA in his last 11 starts. Opponents are hitting just .192 against him in that span, and he has 76 strikeouts in 75 2/3 innings.He had his best start of the season last Wednesday. Wheeler threw eight scoreless innings against the Marlins. He gave up only four hits, did not walk a batter and had seven strikeouts in the 89-pitch outing.“The competitor in me wants to go out there and throw nine every game,” Wheeler told after the start. ” … We aren’t going anywhere right now, so I want to be ready for next year and I just want to play it smart, especially with my history. If we’re contending, I’m going back out there for sure.”Phillies second baseman Cesar Hernandez has homered in each of his last two games and is historically successful against Wheeler. Hernandez is 7-for-11 with seven singles in his career against Wheeler.
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