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MLB Weekly Digest Feb. 26th Edition

The last week in MLB was about a slugger who will be formally announced by a team in the American League, MLB announces pace-of-play rules for 2018 season and a young pitcher may be sidelined for the year.

Boston Red Sox Expected to Announce J.D Martinez Monday Formally

The Boston Red Sox and free agent J.D. Martinez had agreed to the framework on a five-year, $110 million contract early last week, but there was no formal announcement.

The team is expected to have a press conference on Monday introducing Martinez, per Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston.

The contract will still be worth $110 million over five seasons, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.

The reason for the delay is that something came up during the physical for Martinez.

The issue in the physical isn’t expected to hamper Martinez for the 2018 campaign.

The Red Sox had to rework some of the languages in the contract, so it protects them in case their new slugger does suffer an injury during his five years with the team.

The original deal that was reported for Martinez stipulated a pair of opt-out clauses after the second and third seasons, including paying him $50 million over the first two seasons.

Martinez is an incredibly talented hitter, who can make a difference in any lineup, as indicated by him hitting 45 home runs over 119 games with the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks in 2017.

MLB Outlines Pace-of-Play Rules for 2018 Season Including Limited Mound Visits

MLB announced new rules to improve pace of play, per Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area.

They include limiting the number of mound visits to six per game and decreasing the time between innings.

The league said that the six mound visits won’t include pitching changes, according to a statement concerning the new rules. In extra-inning games, clubs will have one additional mound visit per inning.

The time between innings will be 2:05 for breaks in locally televised games…2:25 for breaks in nationally televised championship games, and… 2:55 for the tiebreaker and postseason games.

The other aspect of the break between innings is a pitcher must throw his last warm-up pitch by the time the innings counter reaches 20 seconds, and the batter must go to the batter’s box once the warm-up pitch is thrown.

The idea to reduce the time between innings seems like it could decrease the length of games. However, I’m not sold on limiting mound visits. I’ve grown accustomed to seeing mound visits in prior seasons without there being a limit.

Tampa Bay Rays Pitching Prospect Brent Honeywell Might Need Tommy John Surgery

Tampa Bay Rays pitching prospect Brent Honeywell was expected to compete for a rotation spot this spring but is facing the possibility of needing Tommy John surgery.

Honeywell has a torn UCL and having the operation is recommended, per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.

Honeywell said he’ll get a second opinion but plans to have the surgery and get it done as soon as possible, per Topkin.

Rays manager Kevin Cash mentioned Thursday that Honeywell suffered a strained right forearm after throwing about 10 pitches during a live batting practice session, per Bill Chastain of MLB.com.

It’s a crushing blow for Honeywell as it appeared that a solid showing this spring could have allowed him to make the team’s rotation.

The right-hander posted a 3.64 ERA in 123.2 innings with 152 strikeouts over 24 starts at Triple-A Durham last season.

Author Profile

Chris Lacey
Chris is a 25-year old New Jersey native whose favorite sports team is the Arizona Diamondbacks. He previously attended Western New England College to study Sports Management. Chris has been following the Diamondbacks since he was 12. You can find him on Twitter at@aecanada12.

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