Russell Wilson could soon be getting in on the spring training action.
Yankees general manager Brian Cashman on Tuesday said he’s open to the Seahawks quarterback getting the opportunity to play and take a couple swings in a Grapefruit League game.
Basically, owners decided they were determined to stop soaring free-agent costs, which meant that free agents received either zero interest from other teams or were only offered contracts at or below their previous salaries. Under the rules at the time, if a free agent didn’t re-sign with his previous team by Jan. 8, he couldn’t negotiate with that team again until April ended.
With no options, free agents reacted in a wide variety of ways. Bob Horner, at 29 years old and coming off back-to-back 27-homer seasons, went to play in Japan. Andre Dawson famously gave the Cubs a blank check and let them write in his 1987 salary (the Cubs gave him less than half of his 1986 salary). Lance Parrish took $400,000 less than the Tigers were offering in arbitration to sign with the Phillies. Jack Morris was considered maybe baseball’s best pitcher, but he received zero offers outside of returning to Detroit and re-upped with the Tigers a couple days before Christmas 1986.
In his second MLB season, Gurriel, 33, slashed .299/.332/.486 with 18 home runs and 75 RBIs. Gurriel broke into the majors in 2016 after defecting from Cuba that year, but played in just 36 games. Last season, however, he appeared in 139 games while becoming an integral part of the Astros lineup.
Manager A.J. Hinch told reporters Wednesday that he wasn’t sure how long Gurriel would need to recover.
“I’m not sure, we don’t really know until he gets through the surgery and we get to meet with the doctors to find out what’s next for him, so I don’t have a timeline,” Hinch said (via MLB.com).
In Gurriel’s absence this spring, Tyler White, A.J. Reed and J.D. Davis will get time at first base, Hinch said. Utility player Marwin Gonzalez played 31 games at first last season.