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#pounditWednesday, November 25, 2020

Baseball

Steve Cohen has big plans for infamous piece of Mets memorabilia

Steve Cohen Mets

New York Mets owner Steve Cohen has big plans for a piece of team memorabilia.

Cohen, who is worth an estimated $14 billion, recently purchased the Mets. The new team owner revealed that he owns the infamous Bill Buckner ball from the 1986 World Series. And guess what? He’s planning to put it on display at the Mets museum.

Mets fans should enjoy that.

To refresh your memory, the Boston Red Sox were leading the Mets 5-3 in the top of the 10th inning of Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. Calvin Schiraldi got two outs before allowing three straight hits to make it 5-4. The Mets made a pitching change to Bob Stanley, who wild-pitched the tying run in. Then came the infamous Mookie Wilson ground ball to first that Bill Buckner booted, allowing the Mets to score the winning run.

After coming back to win Game 6, the Mets went on to win Game 7 for their second World Series title.

Cohen is hoping to build the Mets into another World Series winner and has been getting fans excited along the way.

Whit Merrifield, Patrick Mahomes had funny exchange over Royals gear

Patrick Mahomes

Whit Merrifield had a funny exchange with Patrick Mahomes over Twitter on Tuesday over some merchandise.

Merrifield took issue with a section of a Scheels sporting goods store being filled with Kansas City Royals gear for Mahomes. Mahomes plays for Kansas City’s NFL team, the Chiefs, which makes the Royals gear somewhat odd.

Mahomes agreed that something needed to be fixed.

Mahomes is such a popular figure, it makes sense to try and sell some gear related to him in any way possible. That appears to be what Scheels is doing. They also are probably selling Royals gear too, but we all know the gear for Super Bowl champs trumps that of teams that finish fourth in the AL Central.

Report: Yasiel Puig receiving interest from three teams

Yasiel Puig

Yasiel Puig announced on Monday that he had signed with a new agent, and he is already receiving interest from some teams.

According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, Puig is receiving interest from the Houston Astros, Baltimore Orioles and Boston Red Sox. Other teams could also be in the mix for the free agent outfielder.

Puig did not play last season. He was picky over the offseason about what team to sign with, and he actually had a deal with the Atlanta Braves. The deal fell through after Puig tested positive for COVID-19, and he didn’t end up signing anywhere.

Puig, who turns 30 in December, batted .267 with 24 home runs and 19 stolen bases in 2019. Last season he wanted to play with a contender. Among those teams, the Astros certainly fit the bill, if that is still a priority for him.

Report: Randy Arozarena detained over alleged incident involving family

Randy ArozarenaRandy Arozarena became a household name with his postseason heroics this year, but the Tampa Bay Rays star has now found his name in the headlines for an extremely troubling reason.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that Arozarena was detained in Mexico recently following an incident in which he allegedly tried to take his daughter from the child’s mother. Arozarena is also accused of assaulting the woman’s father. The prosecutor in Mexico who is handling the case said more information will be made available in the coming days.

Arozarena is coming off one of the best postseasons in MLB history. The 25-year-old propelled the Rays to the World Series with 10 home runs and 14 RBI in the playoffs. The 10 home runs are now the record for the most in a single postseason. Arozarena batted .377 with a 1.273 OPS in 20 postseason games.

Rays manager Kevin Cash recently offered very high praise for Arozarena, whom Tampa Bay acquired in a January trade with the St. Louis Cardinals. The outfielder also made a great impression on some of baseball’s biggest stars during the playoffs.

All eyes were going to be on Arozarena heading into 2021 to see if he is truly one of the game’s biggest superstars, but now people will be keeping tabs on him for a much different reason.

Pirates’ Cole Tucker spotted on date with actress Vanessa Hudgens

Cole Tucker

Pittsburgh Pirates utility man Cole Tucker has long been a fan of “High School Musical,” so it must be surreal to him that he has been cozying up with a member of the original cast.

According to the Daily Mail, Tucker and actress Vanessa Hudgens were spotted sharing a romantic evening together on Saturday night at the Canyon Country Store in Los Angeles. Hudgens is said to have looked “simply smitten” while having no problem publicly displaying her affection for Tucker.

Back when Cole was in high school, he tweeted an awful lot about “High School Musical.” Now, he’s dating one of the stars.

Tucker was the 24th overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft, and he has not quite lived up to the hype. He has hit just .215 in 93 career MLB games, though he is still just 24.

Fortunately, Tucker’s disappointing performance at the plate doesn’t appear to be impacting his dating life.

H/T Egotastic Sports

Yasiel Puig signs with Trevor Bauer’s agent

Yasiel Puig

Yasiel Puig has a new agent as he seeks a job for the 2021 season.

Rachel Luba announced via Twitter Monday that she is now representing Puig. Luba is known for being the agent for Trevor Bauer.

Puig and Bauer were actually part of the same trade in 2019 that sent the outfielder to Cleveland and the pitcher to Cincinnati.

Puig was supposed to sign with the Braves last season, but a positive COVID-19 test scuttled those plans. He did not end up playing last season.

Puig turns 30 in December and batted .267 with 24 home runs and 19 stolen bases in 2019. He comes with somewhat of a warning for Luba, as he was dropped by his agency in 2018. He later signed with Beverly Hills Sports Council.

Report: Rays open to Blake Snell trade

Blake Snell

The Tampa Bay Rays may be making a former Cy Young winner available on the trade market this offseason.

According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the Rays have told other teams they are open to trading Blake Snell this offseason. The Rays are not actively trying to move Snell, but have made clear that they will entertain offers.

Snell has three years and $42 million remaining on his current contract. The Rays are notorious for maintaining a low payroll, and with Snell’s salary poised to increase in each of the next three seasons, they may see this as the right time to move their ace.

The Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Angels are said to be among the teams with preliminary interest in the left-hander. While Snell would prefer to stay with the Rays, a trade to the Seattle Mariners, his hometown team, would interest him.

If Snell is traded this offseason, his Rays career will have ended with this infamous move by manager Kevin Cash. Ultimately, though, this is likely more about finances than it is about Snell being disgruntled.

Sandy Alderson wants NL to immediately adopt universal DH

Sandy Alderson

It’s not clear whether or not the National League will adopt a universal DH in 2021, but one prominent front office figure wants to see it happen immediately.

New York Mets president Sandy Alderson urged the NL to adopt the designated hitter rule permanently, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today. Alderson added that “pitchers can’t even bunt anymore.”

Alderson’s position is a popular one. Reports indicate that pretty much everyone at every level of MLB, from the league itself to front offices to players, would like to see the DH become a permanent fixture in both leagues. That was the case in 2020 on an impermanent basis, but there is definitely momentum to make it stick.

The move will be disappointing to pitchers like this who really like hitting. However, they’re the exception, not the rule. That’s one of a number of reasons the universal DH appears inevitable.

Steve Cohen roasts J-Lo over failed Mets bid

Steve Cohen Mets

Alex Rodriguez and his fiancée were said to be furious over the way the sale of the New York Mets was handled, but new team owner Steve Cohen clearly has no sympathy for those he outbid.

Cohen has been very active on social media since he officially became the majority owner of the Mets. He answered some questions for fans on Twitter Monday, and one follower shared a tweet from Entertainment Weekly that said “Is there anything @JLo can’t do?” Cohen had a savage response.

Cohen is quickly gaining popularity among Mets fans, and these are the reasons why. He seems like a relatable guy who has already offered some great quotes about why he wanted to own the team.

A-Rod and J-Lo reportedly felt they were unfairly treated while trying to buy the Mets, though Rodriguez has denied being angry over the way things went. Perhaps he will change his tune after seeing the way Cohen trolled J-Lo.

Report: Nationals considering Kris Bryant trade

Kris Bryant

After a disappointing 2020 season, the Washington Nationals may be ready to make significant moves to get back into contention.

According to Jon Morosi of MLB.com, the Nationals are considering an effort to trade for Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant. The team is also monitoring a number of other hitters as they look to improve offensively.

There is certainly some reason to believe Bryant may be traded this offseason. After making $18.6 million last season, that figure is likely to top $20 million in his final season of arbitration. The Cubs don’t seem committed to him long-term, so it would make sense for the team to move him now before they lose him for nothing.

Bryant hit just .206 in 34 games in 2020. The 28-year-old is said to be one of a number of big names the Cubs could try to offload this winter.