Redskins

Royals reach 1-year deal with RHP Luke Hochevar

Royals reach 1-year deal with RHP Luke Hochevar

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) The Kansas City Royals had already decided to give Luke Hochevar another chance.

Now they know exactly how much it's going to cost.

The Royals agreed to a one-year, $4.56 million deal with the right-hander on Friday to avoid arbitration. The deal includes up to $100,000 in performance bonuses.

Hochevar made 29 starts last season, going 8-16 with a 5.73 ERA. The former No. 1 overall pick showed flashes in some starts of the kind of pitcher the Royals hoped he would become, but he also had plenty of erratic outings that left team officials scratching their heads.

Royals manager Ned Yost has been among the most ardent supporters of Hochevar, saying just last month that he still believes the 29-year-old right-hander can turn the corner.

``We'll just see how it plays out, get to spring training and let him go,'' Yost said.

Spring training is where Hochevar will have to define his role, too.

The Royals were aggressive this offseason in rebuilding their starting rotation, trading with the Los Angeles Angels for Ervin Santana and his $13 million contract, and then making a blockbuster deal with the Tampa Bay Rays to acquire James Shields and Wade Davis. Kansas City gave up top prospect Wil Myers and several other pieces to get that deal done.

The Royals also signed Jeremy Guthrie to a $25 million, three-year deal. Guthrie was acquired in a mid-season trade from Colorado and pitched well down the stretch.

That means four of the five spots in the rotation are solidified, and Hochevar will compete with right-hander Luis Mendoza and left-handers Bruce Chen and Will smith for the final job.

The Royals already had one of the best bullpens in the American League last season, anchored by hard-throwing right-hander Greg Holland in the closer role. But should Hochevar lose out on a rotation spot, it's possible that he could become the Royals' long reliever.

Of course, he'd be carrying a hefty price tag for the job.

Hochevar's contract for next season represents a substantial increase over the $3.51 million he made last season, and came in part thanks to a career-best 144 strikeouts in 185.1 innings.

Still, his career over parts of six seasons is 38-59 with a 5.39 ERA, and many believe he regressed last season after going 11-11 with a 4.68 ERA in 2011.

``If you're going to win consistently in the major leagues, you're going to need a rotation that gives you innings, competes, helps you win,'' general manager Dayton Moore said recently. ``That's what our goal is, to put together a very good rotation. We feel we've done that.''

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One crazy stat that connects Dwayne Haskins with Cam Newton, but also Mark Sanchez

One crazy stat that connects Dwayne Haskins with Cam Newton, but also Mark Sanchez

The Redskins selected Dwayne Haskins with the 15th overall pick of the 2019 NFL Draft. While his record at Ohio State was impressive, Haskins didn't log many starts. 

Washington head coach Jay Gruden talked about Haskins back in March during the league meetings, before the Burgundy and Gold drafted the quarterback, and said that because he played just one year in college he would need significant time to learn the NFL game. 

"You would like a guy to play more than a year to see how he’s developed over the years. Haskins has a unique skillset. He’s big, strong and can really throw it," Gruden said. Then, "Is he going to be ready for the first year?"

After OTAs and minicamp, it's obvious Haskins has all the talent needed to play quarterback in the NFL. He's made touch throws and he's rifled balls into tight windows. At the same time, he seemed confused in spots about play calls and struggled with the speed of the pass rush. 

All of that is normal for a player with just 14 starts. But it's that number, the one year of starting experience in college, that makes one statistic stand out about Haskins. 

That's some serious company, both good, bad and ugly. 

As a rookie in 2011, Cam Newton went 6-10 with 35 total TDs and 17 interceptions, not to mention a Rookie of the Year trophy. His running prowess made up for average numbers in the pass game. The more important comparison for Redskins fans is that Newton eventually developed into an NFL MVP and got the Panthers to the Super Bowl. 

For Mark Sanchez, the rookie numbers and the career comparison aren't as kind. Sanchez threw 12 TDs and 20 INTs in 15 games as a rookie, though he was at the helm as the Jets got to two straight AFC title games. Still, for his career, Sanchez threw more INTs than TDs and could not keep a starting job after his rookie contract. 

Trubisky is a different deal. He's only started 26 games since being the second overall pick in the 2017 draft with a record of 15-11. He's thrown 31 touchdowns against 19 interceptions, and run for another five scores. It's hard to describe Trubisky's game. At times he's terribly inaccurate, but in other spots, he looks like a future Pro Bowler. 

Newton is the sure thing, Sanchez is the poor outcome. Trubisky is still to be determined. 

For Haskins, it's not good company or bad company. With only 14 starts at Ohio State before the Redskins drafted Haskins, it's just the company he's in.

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Tomas Satoransky set to enter unpredictable free agent market for point guards

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Tomas Satoransky set to enter unpredictable free agent market for point guards

Of the Wizards' players set to hit free agency on June 30, one who has a good chance to return is point guard Tomas Satoransky. He and center Thomas Bryant are atop the team's priority list with Bobby Portis likely too expensive and Jabari Parker set to enter the market unrestricted.

Satoransky will be a restricted free agent, meaning the Wizards can match any offers made by other teams. And in talking to members of the Wizards' coaching staff and front office, they speak of Satoransky like he is part of their future.

Still, nothing can be assumed and especially in a year in which many teams have money to spend. As Kevin O'Connor of the Ringer noted this week, there is more cap room available this summer than the previous two combined. That could lead to 2016-level contracts where role players get paid like starters and average starters get paid like stars.

What will make Satoransky's market interesting, though, is the fact there are some much bigger names available at his position. At point guard, teams with the most money can go after All-Stars like Kemba Walker, Kyrie Irving and D'Angelo Russell. There is then a robust second tier that includes Malcolm Brogdon, Terry Rozier and Ricky Rubio. Then you have Derrick Rose, Elfrid Payton, Patrick Beverley, Darren Collison and Rajon Rondo.

It is a great year to be a free agent, but maybe not the best year to be a free agent point guard. The position class is absolutely loaded.

Satoransky, though, will still draw plenty of interest and among the teams expected to check in on him are the Mavericks, Pacers, Magic and Celtics, NBC Sports Washington has learned.

The Celtics have already been tied to Satoransky by Keith Smith of Yahoo Sports. But they also have their sights set on some of the bigger fish at point guard with rumors linking them to Walker, in particular.

The Utah Jazz were also set to pursue Satoransky, but their trade for Mike Conley Jr. has taken them off the list. The Phoenix Suns could also emerge as a suitor, though they are being linked to higher profile free agents at this point.

Both the Wizards and Satoransky expressed interest in a contract extension midway through the 2018-19 season, as NBC Sports Washington reported, but those talks didn't get much further. The Wizards ended up putting a lot of things on hold once they drifted out of the playoff race and ultimately fired team president Ernie Grunfeld.

With senior vice president Tommy Sheppard serving in the interim, though, Satoransky has a big proponent calling the shots in the Wizards front office. Sheppard scouted Satoransky before the Wizards drafted him and was key in convincing him to leave Europe for the NBA.

Satoransky likes playing in Washington and recognizes an opportunity at point guard with John Wall set to miss most of next season due to Achilles surgery. But he also recognizes this as a chance to earn the biggest payday of his career.

How much money Satoransky will ultimately receive is hard to predict. Those in his camp are apprehensive to throw numbers out there because even they aren't sure.

One potential comparison could be Raptors guard Fred VanVleet, who makes just over $9 million per year. Though VanVleet is arguably better, Satoransky is hitting the market with more money to go around. 

Many have tried to project Satoransky's market in the past few months. Soon we will find out just how valuable he is.

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