Odds & Ends: Dodgers, Wood, D’Backs, A’s

Links for Wednesday, as the Yankees try to prolong their season…

  • Baseball sources tell Ken Gurnick of MLB.com that the Dodgers are likely to bring Trey Hillman aboard as their bench coach.
  • Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald wonders if Kerry Wood could have made a difference for the BoSox.
  • Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic reports that the Diamondbacks are expected to name Ray Montgomery their new scouting director.  Montgomery has spent the last eight years in the Brewers organization.
  • Bryce Harper will bat seventh in his Arizona Fall League debut tonight, according to the Nationals Baseball Media Relations department (via Twitter).
  • The A's have announced several staff changes via press release.  Gerald Perry has been welcomed back as hitting coach in place of Jim Skaalen.  Joel Skinner, a longtime member of the Indians coaching staff, will take over as bench coach.  Former bench coach Tye Waller will be reassigned as the first base coach.  Waller replaces Todd Steverson who has been offered a position in the A's farm system.
  • Mark McGwire is on the fence about returning as the Cards hitting coach, Tony La Russa told Joe Strauss of the Post-Dispatch.
  • Former Angels scouting director Eddie Bane will join the Tigers scouting department, according to ESPN.com's Keith Law (on Twitter).
  • MLB.com's Jason Beck introduces us to Tigers assistant GM Al Avila, the longtime Detroit exec who remains a GM candidate. The Tigers recently declined to let the Mets interview Avila. 
  • If you play fantasy baseball, head over to RotoAuthority, where Tim Dierkes examines the impact of Ted Lilly's new deal on the lefty's fantasy value.
  • It doesn't look like Japanese shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima will become available to MLB teams this year, according to reports passed along by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker (Twitter link).
  • Cubs GM Jim Hendry told MLB.com's Carrie Muskat that he will "absolutely" welcome Ryne Sandberg back to Chicago's minor league system if the Hall of Famer wants to continue working his way to the major leagues. Sandberg, a finalist for the Cubs major league job, was disappointed when the team hired Mike Quade.
  • Brewers managerial candidate Pat Listach was pleased with his interview, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson.


25 Responses to Odds & Ends: Dodgers, Wood, D’Backs, A’s Leave a Reply

  1. Count on Sandberg not staying in that organization. He’s probably wanted that job after Piniella leaves for years.

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      Despite being an heir apparent for the job Sandberg had to be aware he wasn’t a lock for the position. My bet is if he gets an offer to manage a different major league team he’ll take it. If not, he’ll accept whatever the Cubs offer.

      • There has to be someone who will want his serivices tho. I can see the Brewers making Cubs fans riot by signing Sandberg.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        I don’t think it would be smart for Sandberg to abandon his Iowa post unless he gets an offer to be a bench coach (possible) or manager (extremely unlikely) of an MLB club. If he pouts and leaves, he’ll have burnt the one proverbial bridge with the one organization where he’s most likely to get an MLB managing job (esp. even if he’s not the most qualified candidate for it). Plus, you’d have to think that Quade’s hold on the Cubs’ job is rather tenuous. Tim Wallach was in a similar position with the Dodgers, and smartly chose to stick around (at least for now) when he was passed over for the Dodgers’ gig in favor of Mattingly, whom the Los Angeles press already seems ready to run out of town.

        • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

          That’s a big reason why I see Sandberg staying. If he doesn’t get an offer to manage then he’ll pretty much be considered next in line if Quade fails. Simply put, but there’s very little I can see about the Cubs that convinces me they can make a run at the series in a couple of years. Usual move in that case is “blame the manager.”

          • cubfan4life 5 years ago

            Idk if he will stay or not. I could see it being very likely that they could install him as the bench coach for Quade though. Cause idk about you but i kind of see Quade as a Jim Riggleman type. A good baseball man but doesnt have that name that the fans want.
            If Sandberg is smart he will take the bench coach job if its offered or stay for another year at Iowa. Cause Quade wont last. If they have another losing season i wouldnt be surprised if they replaced him next offseason.

        • studio179 5 years ago

          Geez, I thought there was a honeymoon period. What did Mattingly do?

  2. Backup_Slider 5 years ago

    Alas, poor Patrick Newman. All he seems to do is file reports about which players NPB teams will be posting or which NPB would-be free agents wish to come over to MLB, but it seems that of late almost none of those players ever wind up coming stateside. In short, it seems that Newman (Newman!) has hitched his proverbial wagon to a tree that is now bearing very few fruits. Aside from the reluctance of the NPB franchises to surrender their talent (as would be suspected in the case of Nakajima), I continue to suspect that there is a definite decreased level of interest in NPB players within MLB organizational circles that is playing into the recent lack of imports from NPB, with the one notable exception being the never-ending quest for elite pitching arms (Darvish et al.).

    • safari_punch 5 years ago

      You could be right with MLB’s reluctance to go after Japanese players. Kaz Matsui was suppose to be a solid player and he didn’t live up to expectations at all. I would think that some team would want to have taken a chance on Nakajima for the simple fact that any money you spend on him will be a good investment be an additional source of revenue (increased attendance, Japanese advertisers, etc.). Teams that are struggling with attendance (Jays, Pirates, others) could benefit from a player like Nakajima – and if he pans out as a starting player, it’s a real coupe.From a PR perspective, I can see why Japanese league teams don’t want to give up their players unless they absolutely have to; they have their pride and don’t want to be seen a minor/feeder league to MLB.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        I don’t see the MLB vs NPB Ultra-World Series that Selig has discussed lately happening anytime soon, but it’s infinitely interesting to consider how the NPB US-born gaijin and the MLB Japan-born gaijin who played in such a series would be viewed in their native countries. My slightly-higher-than-limited knowledge of Japanese culture makes me suspect that it would be much harder for the Japanese-born MLB players, almost to the point that I could foresee a definite reluctance among Japanese-born players to play in MLB.

    • Patrick Newman 5 years ago

      I appreciate your (tongue-in-cheek) concern, but I don’t really have any personal stake in whether the players come over or not. And I write about plenty of other topics related to Japanese baseball, they just aren’t relevant here.

      • safari_punch 5 years ago

        I don’t know if you’ve written about this on your site or not, but what is the reaction from the Japanese teams and fans when a player is a bust in MLB? Do they look at it like the teams made off like they burnt MLB or does it chip away at their pride when guys like Igawa are busts?

        • Patrick Newman 5 years ago

          I haven’t really written about that. I guess it varies from player to player. Igawa has been the biggest bust to come out of Japan, but Yomiuri still tried to acquire him last offseason. Kazuo Matsui will get a chance in NPB if he wants one. Now that I think of it, I guess things have changed quite a bit. There was a time when Irabu was banished, but even he finished his career in Japan.

      • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

        Yes, my comments were definitely made with tongue in cheek. To me, there’s no such thing as too much baseball coverage, and if you weren’t doing what you’re doing, I suspect we here in North America wouldn’t know much of anything about NPB, which would be a shame. I’m guessing you simply recognized the lack of coverage from there years ago, and took up the assignment as a part-time hobby to get more English-language information about NPB out to the fans here, likely putting some pre-existent Japanese language skills to good use?

    • Patrick Newman 5 years ago

      I appreciate your (tongue-in-cheek) concern, but I don’t really have any personal stake in whether the players come over or not. And I write about plenty of other topics related to Japanese baseball, they just aren’t relevant here.

    • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

      actually, without Patrick Newman, we wouldn’t have any NPB news at all nor would we know who Hiroyuki Nakajima is…Come own man!!!

      • Just play Pro Yakyuu Spirits 2010. Not only do you get to know a lot of NPB teams and players, but it’s one of the greatest baseball games ever made… My new favorite NPB pitcher is Masahiro Tanaka with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles. Just putting that out there lol

        • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

          Seriously? Real teams, players, and ballparks? How much is it?

          • Backup_Slider 5 years ago

            Just think, SPANdemonium_is_back_again. NPB has 12 more farm systems for you to study and evaluate! I’m guessing that within a 6-month time frame inclusive of playing Pro Yakyuu Spirits 2010 you could learn the language in full and be able to list the top 10 prospects of the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks at the drop of a cap.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            I bet your right and that would actually be awesome!

    • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

      actually, without Patrick Newman, we wouldn’t have any NPB news at all nor would we know who Hiroyuki Nakajima is…Come own man!!!

  3. untdrum99 5 years ago

    It was reported weeks ago that the Cubs were looking for someone with managerial experience at the big league level, which does not include Sandberg. They obviously think highly of him to include him in the final rounds of interviews even though he didn’t fit their public criteria for the job.

    It’s very common in the business world when an internal candidate does not get an executive-level job, then they resign look elsewhere for employment. I would think Sandberg will consider options outside of the organization, but if doesn’t get any calls then he still has his job in Iowa. Many people in baseball have been quoted as saying that current day managers are hired to be fired, so maybe Sandberg won’t have to wait long to get his shot.

  4. RedSox2219 5 years ago

    Wood couldn’t have been worse than Okajima and company.

    • Hermie13 5 years ago

      True.

      But no way does he “make a difference” for the Red Sox….at least not as far as the standing go. Wood was not worth 6 wins over the last 2 months of the year. No reliever in the history of baseball is worth that.

      All Wood would have done is “maybe” have closed the gab between the Yanks and Sox by 2 games….and that is being very, very generous.

  5. LUWahooNatFan 5 years ago

    Anywhere that I can follow the game tonight, I’m somewhat interested in how Bryce Harper does

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