Storylines: Washington discusses resignation from Rangers
In this MLB News and Notes segment, I will be giving occasional reports on the latest news and rumors throughout the MLB. I also will try to tweet news and rumors as I see them, so feel free to follow me on Twitter: @AndrewIBI.
Here are the stories from Thursday, Sept. 18.
- Former Rangers manager Ron Washington stated in a live press conference that he had an extra-marital relationship, which was the basis for his decision to leave his post. He also said that he intends to return to the game at some point in the future, though no specific timeline was given.
- The Indians have shut down utility man Ryan Raburn for the rest of the year after discovering during a recent MRI a meniscus issue in his injured left knee that will require surgery, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reported. Manager Terry Francona said the arthroscopic procedure will be performed in the near future.
News and Notes:
- As Texas looks for its new skipper, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported that there's some mutual interest between the team and former cornerstone Michael Young. Sources told Rosenthal that any past issues between Young and general manager Jon Daniels have been settled. Young, of course, had a tumultuous end to his time with the Rangers and at one point requested a trade, going on the record stating that he had "been misled and manipulated" and was "sick of it."
- Daniels told reporters, including Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, that he expects the managerial search to pick up steam the week after the regular season's conclusion. The Texas GM said that he is considering a wide variety of candidates, including one "just off the field" candidate, which could of course be Young. However, Grant noted that Young may not be ready to jump back into the game. Young turned down multiple offers that would've paid him more than $4 million to play in 2014 to be close to his family, Grant wrote. Grant also speculated that 39-year-old Gabe Kapler could surface as a candidate, though Kapler declined to comment when reached by Grant last week.
- Three clubs in the league's western division may have the greatest trade deadline regrets, in the opinion of MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince (writing for Sports On Earth). The Athletics have seen their fortunes fade since dealing away Yoenis Cespedes for Jon Lester, though of course Lester has been outstanding. The Mariners' three key additions — Austin Jackson, Kendrys Morales, and Chris Denorfia — have generally failed to hit. And the Dodgers passed on a chance to add an impact starter. Of course, it is eminently arguable that the Athletics' underperformance since the deadline is really not a reflection on Cespedes-Lester swap at all, as Tony Blengino of Fangraphs explained. The team has failed to score runs, to be sure, but that is due in large part to the production fall-offs from key first-half contributors like Brandon Moss, Derek Norris, and John Jaso (the latter, in large part, due to injury).
- The one-year extensions signed before the season by Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson and then-GM Kevin Towers contain rollover clauses that provide for automatic re-extensions if they are not dismissed by a certain date, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. (Such an anti-lame duck provision is also a feature of the Blue Jays' contract with manager John Gibbons.) Player support for Gibson is "all but gone," sources told Rosenthal, but he could still be retained by chief baseball officer Tony La Russa. Meanwhile, Rosenthal joined others in reporting that Dave Stewart is the leading candidate to take over as GM. Stewart said he is "very interested" in the position, and his hiring would make it likely that Towers stays on in a senior scouting role, according to Rosenthal.
- While Yasmani Tomas makes a good deal of sense for the Phillies, that does not mean that they are favorites to sign him, David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News wrote. Other clubs in better position to contend will likely place an increased value on adding a bat like Tomas given their spot on the win curve, Murphy suggested. The Rangers will have scouts on hand to watch Cuban slugger Yasmani Tomas' showcase this Sunday in the Dominican Republic, Calvin Watkins of ESPNDallas.com reported. As he noted, the Rangers could be in need of a replacement for Alex Rios if his $13 million club option is not exercised. The Rangers do appear set with their other two outfield spots, however, with Leonys Martin under team control through 2018 and Shin-Soo Choo under contract through the 2020 season.
- Mets starter Dillon Gee is under team control for next year, but as Newsday's Marc Carig wrote, he could find himself squeezed out of the rotation after a tough second half. "I'll have a spot somewhere," said Gee. "It might not be here but it will be somewhere."
- The Mets could be more and more inclined to hold off on adding a shortstop given the recent play of Wilmer Flores, as Mike Puma of the New York Post reported. "We're getting a lot more comfortable," said GM Sandy Alderson. "One of the reasons for giving [Flores] as much playing time as we have is to build up his number of plate appearances to get him more comfortable to try to establish sort of a baseline." Alderson said that Flores has done a solid job defensively at short, noting that Ruben Tejada and Matt Reynolds also remain internal options to take the position next year.
- The Nationals claimed infielder Pedro Florimon off waivers from the Twins, the club announced. This is the move that necessitated the designation of Eury Perez for assignment, which the team also announced.