Chuck Tanner, manager of Pittsburgh's last World Series championship team, passed away today at age 81. Tanner played eight seasons in the majors but gained more fame as a manager, compiling a 401-414 record manning the benches of the White Sox, Athletics, Pirates and Braves from 1970 to 1988. Tanner's lone postseason appearance came in 1979 when he led the "We Are Family" Bucs to victory over the Orioles in a tight, seven-game World Series. The MLBTR team sends its condolences to Tanner's friends and family.
Some news to wrap up the week…
- Arizona CEO Derrick Hall tells Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic that the Diamondbacks' payroll for next season will be "in the low $60s, approaching $65MM." Hall says the team has lost money in each of the last three years but is still open to potential new spending if the Snakes are in contention, since the club will only draw more fans if they put a winning product on the field. The article also notes the D'Backs "are budgeting for significant costs in this year's draft," given that Arizona holds the third and seventh overall picks.
- The Pirates have both received and sent out some "feelers" about Ryan Doumit, writes Colin Dunlap of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette as part of a chat with fans. Dunlap thinks teams want to make sure Doumit is healthy during Spring Training before seriously pursuing the catcher/first baseman. I recently looked at how Doumit's 2011 season is a make-or-break campaign.
- Billy Wagner is taking his time filing retirement papers, but David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes that Wagner's continued presence on the Braves' 40-man roster isn't preventing the club from making any moves.
- The Marlins are comfortable with their young rotation and have no need for a veteran innings-eater like Kevin Millwood or Jarrod Washburn, writes MLB.com's Joe Frisaro.
- Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com thinks that labeling either Albert Pujols or Michael Young as "greedy" is misguided.
- The Irving Picard lawsuit filed against the Mets' ownership group could result in the financial records of several, if not all, other Major League teams being examined in court, reports Jon Paul Morosi and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
- Jayson Stark of ESPN.com recaps the offseason and lists which teams he thought made the best and worst winter moves.