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The real reason Janice had an iconic voice on Friends California governor emphasizes wildfires show reality of climate change Canadiens sign Joel Edmundson to four-year deal

The Montreal Canadiens took a chance when they traded a fifth-round pick for the negotiating rights of Joel Edmundson, but it has worked out the way they hoped.

The Canadiens have signed Edmundson to a four-year contract that will carry a $3.5M average annual value. Edmunson will also receive a 10-team no-trade clause in the deal, according to Chris Johnston of Sportsnet.

© James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports The Habs acquired the negotiating rights to Joel Edmundson just a few days ago.

Edmundson, 27, is coming off the best offensive season of his career, scoring 20 points in 68 games with the Carolina Hurricanes. That followed his arrival from the St. Louis Blues as part of the package that landed Justin Faulk, just a few months after Edmundson won the Stanley Cup. While he certainly should not be considered an offensive defenseman, he has logged a lot of minutes in the past and was a big contributor to Carolina’s penalty kill. That defensive acumen was obviously coveted enough by Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin for him to go out and use an asset to acquire Edmundson before he hit the open market, while also handing out a long-term contract.

Montreal, of course, has star defensemen Shea Weber and Jeff Petry manning the blue line, but the latter is heading into his final year under contract. The team has now shored up the group with another capable defender, but it’s unclear exactly how the playing time will now shake out. Alexander Romanov was expected to challenge for a spot on the NHL roster immediately, but Edmundson’s addition actually gives the Canadiens a glut of left-handed options. Still, having defensive depth was always going to be required for the Canadiens to compete in the Eastern Conference, and the team had plenty of cap space to work with this offseason.

For Edmundson, this contract represents the first real long-term stability he has had in his NHL career. He’d previously been playing on short-term deals, including just a one-year $3.1M contract awarded through arbitration in 2019-20. While this doesn’t represent much of a salary increase on his last two contracts, he does get some financial security and is now locked in through the 2023-24 season.

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Bryce Harper demands Phillies re-sign J.T. Realmuto as Mets loom

Bryce Harper is calling on Phillies brass to re-sign J.T. Realmuto.

Speaking with reporters following an ugly 5-0 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays Sunday that officially put an end to another disappointing Phillies season, Harper gave his two cents regarding pending free-agent catcher Realmuto.

“J.T. Realmuto needs to be our catcher next year — plain and simple,” Bryce Harper declared.

Harper has been pushing for the Phillies to re-sign Realmuto since spring training and throughout the summer. In the early days of summer camp, Harper sported a Realmuto T-shirt and shouted “Sign him!” after the 29-year-old catcher blasted a home run in an intrasquad game during camp at Citizens Bank Park.

And no one could forget when cameras caught Harper making a signing motion as he crossed home plate ahead of Realmuto after one of his early-season home runs.

Harper continued his campaign for Realmuto Sunday.

Bryce Harper (r.) wants the Phillies to re-sign All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto.Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

“He’s the best catcher in baseball,” Harper said. “He’s the best hitting catcher in baseball. Our guys love to throw to him if that’s [Zack] Wheeler, if that’s [Aaron] Nola, if that’s anybody.

“Anybody that’s the best at their position — hitting and fielding — needs to be signed and that is J.T. Realmuto. I don’t think that should even be a question. There’s going to be two teams or three teams in the NL East who are going to go after that guy and if that happens, I mean, that’s going to be tough to swallow for us.”

The Mets, whose wallets just got a little deeper with new owner Steven Cohen waiting for approval to take majority control, are expected to be one of those teams gunning for Realmuto.

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The Phillies came out on top in a salary arbitration hearing with Realmuto in February, with the arbitration panel siding with Philadelphia and their $10 million offer. The organization was reportedly getting started on negotiations with Realmuto for a long-term extension that would keep him from hitting free agency this winter, but they were stalled when the coronavirus pandemic hit.

In June, Phillies general manager Matt Klentak mentioned that the “landscape” had changed as it related to the team’s plan to retain Realmuto. However, the organization is still expected to try to work out a deal with Realmuto, who is reportedly aiming to become the highest-paid catcher in MLB history.

In the shortened 2020 season, Realmuto posted a .266 batting average with 32 RBIs and 11 homers.

Philadelphia acquired Realmuto from the Miami Marlins in February 2019 in exchange for Jorge Alfaro, Sixto Sanchez, Will Stewart and $250,000 in international bonus slot money. Realmuto earned his second All-Star appearance in 2019 after he slashed .275/.328/.493 in 538 at bats with career-highs in home runs (25), RBIs (83) and runs (92).

At the end of last season, Realmuto won his second career Silver Slugger award and his first Gold Glove Award.

With Sunday’s loss, the Phillies failed to qualify for the playoffs for the ninth straight year.

Filed under bryce harper ,  j.t. realmuto ,  new york mets ,  philadelphia phillies ,  9/28/20

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