Encarnacion to Mariners, Santana to Indians in 3-team trade
By BEN WALKER
AP Baseball Writer
Friday, December 14
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto was in a hospital, making a trade from a bed.
Cleveland counterpart Chris Antonetti was boarding a plane headed back home, trying to finalize the deal before the flight pulled away from the gate.
They managed to complete the swap as the winter meetings came to an end. Carlos Santana was sent back to Cleveland, where he was an Indians fan favorite. Edwin Encarnacion is headed to Seattle — no telling how long he’ll stick there.
The star hitters were dealt for each other Thursday, part of a three-team trade that also involved Tampa Bay.
The Rays got infielder Yandy Diaz and minor league right-hander Cole Sulser from Cleveland. The Indians also acquired first baseman Jake Bauers from Tampa Bay, while the busy Mariners wound up with a draft pick. Tampa Bay will send $5 million to Seattle and the Mariners will pay $6 million to Cleveland.
“I called Edwin earlier this morning before we had final sign-off because again I wanted him to hear from me,” Antonetti said after landing, adding he was in midflight when he finally reached Diaz.
Dipoto made likely the first winter meetings deal from a medical facility since then Jim Hendry’s agreement with pitcher Ted Lilly in 2007 when the then-Chicago Cubs general manager was taken for angioplasty in 2006. Dipoto felt ill a day earlier and was checked “out of an abundance of caution,” the team said. Dipoto was released from the hospital later Thursday.
“We’ll see how it goes with Edwin, whether he stays with us or he moves on to another destination,” Seattle assistant general manager Justin Hollander said.
Coming off their third straight AL Central title, the Indians had been expected to make a move at the meetings, presumably with ace Corey Kluber or pitcher Trevor Bauer.
Instead, they jettisoned Encarnacion — the designated hitter has averaged 108 RBIs over the last seven seasons — and brought back the popular Santana.
“Not sure how to feel,” Indians star Jose Ramirez tweeted.
The 32-year-old Santana, known for his power and ability to draw walks, spent the first eight seasons of his career in Cleveland before signing a $60 million, three-year deal with Philadelphia last winter. He is still owed $35 million.
Philadelphia sent Santana to the rebuilding Mariners this month in a trade that included All-Star shortstop Jean Segura. Seattle quickly parted with Santana, who was appreciated by Indians rooters even more after he left.
“We know what makes him tick. We know all of the things that he brings to a team into a clubhouse, so that does help,” Antonetti said.
Santana hit .229 with 24 home runs and 86 RBIs while walking 110 times as the Phillies’ first baseman. He is owed $17 million next season and $17.5 million in 2020, part of a deal that includes a $17.5 million team option for 2021 with a $500,000 buyout.
Yonder Alonso hit 23 homers with 83 RBIs last season as the Indians’ first baseman. He’s signed for 2019 with an option for 2020 — with the additions of Santana and Bauers, perhaps Alonso could end up in a trade along with one of Cleveland’s star pitchers.
Encarnacion had 107 RBIs while hitting 32 homers and .246. He leads the majors in homers and RBIs since 2012, and could provide the power lost when DH Nelson Cruz became a free agent.
A month before he turns 36, Encarnacion is guaranteed $25 million: $20 million next season and a $5 million buyout of a $25 million club option for 2020.
“Both Carlos and Jake are productive major league players that not only will contribute but enhance the versatility of our roster,” Antonetti said. “And beyond that it adds some payroll flexibility for us in 2019.”
Seattle gets a competitive balance round B draft pick, currently projected at 77th overall. The Mariners, who recently traded star second baseman Robinson Cano and closer Edwin Diaz, said getting that choice was key to them making the deal.
“By adding another draft pick for 2019, we have another opportunity to add to the talent in our minor league system,” Dipoto said in a statement.
Tampa Bay was eager to get Yandy Diaz, who hit .283 with 28 RBIs in 88 games for Cleveland in the last two seasons. Highly regarded at 27, his opportunities were limited with the Indians because they already had a talented infield.
Diaz hit .312 in 39 games for Cleveland this year. The Cuban led the Triple-A International League in on-base percentage.
“The key to this deal for us is how we feel about Yandy Diaz,” said Chaim Bloom, the Rays’ senior vice president of baseball operations. “We really like his bat. He hasn’t gotten an opportunity to show it regularly at the major league level just being blocked by some of the players that the Indians have had.”
“But we think there’s a lot of upside there,” he said. “He’s a third baseman by trade. He can also play first base. He’s kicked around the outfield a little bit. That and the fact that he’s a right-handed hitter is a really good fit for our roster.”
The 23-year-old Bauers made his major league debut last season and hit .201 with 11 homers and 48 RBIs in 96 games for Tampa Bay.
Sulser, 28, spent last season in Triple-A and Double-A, going a combined 8-4 with a 3.86 ERA in 47 relief appearances.
Tampa Bay will send the Mariners $2.5 million in two installments by May 1 and Aug. 1 next year. Seattle will send Cleveland a pair of $1 million payments on or before May 1 and Aug. 1 next year, and $2 million on or before each of those dates in 2020.
More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Patrol Canine Training Facility to open Monday
What: The Ohio State Highway Patrol Canine Training Facility will formally open.
Who: Colonel Paul A. Pride, Superintendent of the Ohio State Highway Patrol
Where: 22600 Northwest Parkway, Marysville
When: Monday, December 17 at 1 p.m.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol will formally open its Canine Training Facility. Located on the grounds of the Patrol’s Marysville Post, the new facility will be a centralized location for the Patrol’s canine operations and training programs.
The 1.4 million dollar training facility was funded by appropriations in the Ohio Department of Public Safety capital budget. This one-of-a-kind facility features classrooms, office space, dormitories, kennels and a practical training building in one site. The Canine Training facility will be used to train new canines and handlers for the Patrol and partner law enforcement agencies, as well as required on-going maintenance training.
The Patrol’s Canine Training Program began in 2015. Since that time, 43 canines have been trained by the Patrol. 31 of those were trained for the Patrol, 12 were trained for police departments and sheriff offices across Ohio. The Patrol offers canine training to our law enforcement partners at no cost.
Paris police bracing for more violent protests
By Associated Press
Friday, December 14
PARIS (AP) — Anticipating a fifth straight weekend of violent protests, Paris’ police chief said Friday that armored vehicles and thousands of officers will be deployed again in the French capital this weekend.
Michel Delpuech told RTL radio that security services intend to deploy the same numbers and strength as last weekend, with about 8,000 officers and 14 armored vehicles again in Paris.
Delpuech said the biggest difference will be the deployment of more groups of patrol officers to catch vandals, who last weekend roamed streets around the Champs Elysees, causing damage and looting. Police arrested more than 1,000 people in Paris last weekend and 135 people were injured, including 17 police officers
A sixth “yellow vest” protester was killed this week, hit by a truck at a protest roadblock. Despite calls from authorities urging protesters — who wear the fluorescent safety vests that France requires drivers to keep in their cars — to stop the protests, the movement rocking the country has showed no signs of abating.
“Last week, we pretty much handled the yellow vests but we also witnessed scenes of breakage and looting by criminals,” Delpuech said. “Our goal will be to better control this aspect.”
In an effort to defuse the tensions sweeping the country, French President Emmanuel Macron has acknowledged he’s partially responsible for the anger behind the anti-government protests. He has announced a series of measures aimed at improving French workers’ spending power but has refused to reinstate a wealth tax.
Many protesters have expressed disappointment at the measures and some trade unions are now calling for rolling strikes across the country.
“The best action is to go on strike,” said Philippe Martinez, the head of leftist trade union CGT. “There are inequalities in this country and we need to make big company bosses pay.”
French Interior minister Christophe Castaner urged protesters to express themselves peacefully in the wake of a two-day manhunt for a man suspected of killing three people in the eastern city of Strasbourg that mobilized hundreds of police.
“I can’t stand the idea that today people applaud police forces and that tomorrow some people will think it makes sense to throw stones at us,” Castaner said from Strasbourg, where the suspect was killed on Thursday.
Among the various calls for demonstrations, one group of yellow vests called for a non-violent protest on the Place de la Republique in Paris under the slogan “Je Suis Strasbourg” (I am Strasbourg), a reference to the “Je Suis Charlie” motto used by supporters of freedom of speech after a 2015 attack in which 12 people were killed at the offices of the French satirical weekly newspaper Charlie Hebdo.
See the AP’s coverage of France’s protests at: https://apnews.com/FranceProtests
Debate: The ‘gilets jaunes’ movement is not a Facebook revolution
Updated December 13, 2018
Author: Jen Schradie, Assistant Professor, Observatoire sociologique du changement, Axa Research Fund Fellow, Sciences Po – USPC
Disclosure statement: Jen Schradie received funds for her research on digital activism by the National Science Foundation, the Jacob K. Javits Fellowship, the Mike Synar Fellowship from the Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies, the Peter Lyman Graduate Fellowship in New Media, the Department of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley, the Berkeley Center for New Media, the Berkeley New Media Summer Research Fellowship, the Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse, and the Observatoire Sociologique du Changement, Sciences Po – Paris. She is currently also a fellow of the Axa Research Fund.
Partners: Université Sorbonne Paris Cité provides funding as a founding partner of The Conversation FR. Sciences Po provides funding as a member of The Conversation FR.
In less than a month, France’s gilets jaunes (yellow vests) have gone from being a celebrated example of Facebook’s ability to power a spontaneous revolution to a cautionary tale of how social networks can be manipulated by outsiders to provoke outrage and sow dissent. But in both of these extreme scenarios, the central actors lie outside France, whether it’s the platforms based in Silicon Valley or the suspected propagandists in Russia.
Because the gilets jaunes phenomenon couldn’t be connected to one particular trade union, political party or any other national organization, many looked to the role of the Internet to explain the emergence and diffusion of the protest movement, symbolized by the yellow safety vests that activists wear.
The French are accustomed to protests that are scheduled well in advance. There’s even an app called “C’est la grève” that announces strikes, be they with the railways, schools or elsewhere.
There’s an orderly fashion to so-called disruptive manifestations (as protests are referred to in French), but the gilets jaunes movement hasn’t followed the rules. So who exactly broke the rules? An easy answer has been the Internet.
Breaking the rules
In many ways, that’s the point of the gilets jaunes: they’re breaking the rules. Not only did they bypass traditional organizations, but they have accused the Parisian establishment, particularly President Emmanuel Macron, of being elitist and out of touch with the economic struggles of working-class people, particularly those in rural areas. They are not anti-tax in principle or even anti-government intervention, but they are against the type of decision-makers who supported an increase in the tax on diesel fuel without understanding how challenging it has been for people in the countryside to survive – they’re struggling because they have to drive farther and farther to get to fewer and fewer jobs, with wages that have not kept up with the costs of living.
And since existing institutions weren’t responding to these everyday needs, the protests that erupted in November have expanded to broader economic and political demands. But how did this movement happen? If it wasn’t existing organizations, many have said, it must be the Internet. A common example of this argument stems from the viral Facebook videos by Jacline Mouraud, a digitally savvy musician who lives in north-western France and early on encouraged people to protest.
The revolutionary power of social media is wishful thinking
Both scholars and journalists have argued that digital technology, rather than organizations, drive modern social movements. A decade ago, commentators dubbed the Iranian Green Movement in 2009 a “Twitter Revolution”. Soon after, many suggested that a “Facebook Revolution” drove protests in Egypt. Scholars also claimed that the Internet was key to the 2011 anti-austerity movement in Spain and the American “Occupy Wall Street” movement.
More recently, with the Women’s March against Trump in 2017 or the gilets jaunes in 2018, the same argument is put forth. As a sociologist who researches social media, social movements and social class, I was not surprised at the overblown credit given to Facebook with these latest movements. Still, le sigh. Again?
Yet over the past two years, this celebration over digital technology’s role in political participation took a dark turn. From Trump’s toxic tweets to Brexit’s online cesspool, the role of far-right outfits like Cambridge Analytica and Facebook itself came to light in fomenting far-right movements. And the French foreign minister recently announced an investigation into fake news and Russian manipulation of the gilets jaunes. What was once a horizontal digital army of white knights out to save the day was all of a sudden a horde of bots and hacks orchestrated by authoritarian institutions. Yet many still want to put faith in the Internet over institutions.
But both of these views, whether digital utopianism or dystopianism, fail to acknowledge people on the ground and their existing networks, as well as the fact that populist movements that seem to arise out of nowhere are not new to the digital era.
Just a tool
Without a doubt, the spread of information during a time of upheaval is certainly faster with the Internet. And the gilets jaunes are no exception. But do we call the French Revolution a “letter” movement? The American civil rights movement a “mimeograph” revolution? The Internet is a communications tool. An efficient one, but it’s still a tool.
Every radical movement has had their communication tools, such as radio with the French Resistance, yet those coded messages in the 1940s needed a network on the ground to make sense of them and respond. Many of the gilets jaunes protests at traffic circles (ronds-points, as they’re called in France) were organized by people who were already connected on Facebook through other ties or who work and live together in the same small towns.
Populist movements like the gilets jaunes often have spikes of initial protest without necessarily having formal organizations that link people together, or what scholars like to call “weak ties”.
Yet existing institutions and networks, from the connections made by France’s Nuit debout movement to traditional unions of teachers and transport workers, were inspired to spread the news of the gilets jaunes during the emergence period of this movement. And the word “inspired” is the operating word here, as the gilets jaunes movement has motivated these organizations to not only participate in the protests but to take bolder stands on their own issues, such as the current teacher strikes and school occupations over the high school reforms.
And what is often forgotten is the still-critical role that traditional mainstream media play in disseminating information, such as the conservative French newspaper Le Figaro, which has run sweeping coverage of the protests since their inception. And French nightly television news has run non-stop footage and analyses of the protests.
Behind the hashtags are community ties and structural inequalities
But how can the gilets jaunes movement sustain itself? From the analysis and research presented in my upcoming book, The Revolution That Wasn’t: How Digital Activism Favors Conservatives (Harvard University Press), I found that over time, movements that have resources and infrastructure are more likely to harness the power of the Internet, and conservatives tend to have an advantage in this regard. Over the long run, it takes focused time and expertise to maintain online participation for social movements. Hierarchical, not horizontal, groups are more likely to be able to do this. Simply, more, not less, organization is required for digital activism to endure in a movement.
Yet I am not arguing that the gilets jaunes was sparked by a conservative organizational bureaucracy. Quite the contrary. It is an organic popular movement that wants the government to be more, not less, involved in improving the lives of the working-class. Yet we can already see how institutions, such as Jean-Luc Melenchon’s left-leaning La France Insoumise movement, have tried to fill the vacuum of this so-called leaderless movement. In the absence of a strong grassroots organization, others will take over, including orchestrated dis-information digital campaigns.
But nor is propaganda new to political movements. The problem with the pendulum swing of “Hooray, the Internet connects!” to “Boo, the Internet deceives!” is that neither explanation for protest takes into account the community ties before the protests began but more importantly, the broader structural crisis that brought people together in the first place.
This is a movement that is linked to power and economic differences – not just people feeling a financial squeeze at the end of the month but also eyeing the growing inequality between the elites and the working class all over France. And they’re not spending valuable time at protests or risking arrest because they are dupes to fake news. They are embedded in a societal context that drives their participation.
When I first moved to France in 2014 after studying populist movements in the United States – from Occupy Wall Street to the Tea Party – I was curious why there hadn’t been a strong left-wing populist movement in France like in Spain, the US or much of the western world in 2011.
I soon began to understand that despite the emergence of movements like Nuit debout and other protests against the “Loi travail” (a law that loosened worker protections), France’s social system was able to weather the storm of the economic recession that had plagued other countries. So even though digital activism was alive and well in 2011, a strong movement against neo-liberal policies had not yet emerged. Simply put, a popular movement drives Internet use. Not the other way around.
Created in 2007, the Axa Research Fund supports more than 500 projects around the world conducted by researchers from 51 countries. To learn more about a current project of Dr. Jen Schradie, visit the dedicated site.
December calendar. (This will be the only time you will see this phenomenon in your life)
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The month of December this year will have 5 Saturdays, 5 Sundays, and 5 Mondays. It only happens once every 823 years. The Chinese call it “BAG FULL OF MONEY”.