The latest from the majors’ East divisions:
- The Nationals ended their managerial search Sunday when they agreed to hire Cubs bench coach Dave Martinez. While former Yankees skipper Joe Girardi did not interview for the job before it went to Martinez, the Nationals “at least made a cursory inquiry about” him, Barry Svrluga of the Washington Post tweets.
- Martinez received a three-year contract, which demonstrates that Nationals ownership has learned a lesson, Eddie Matz of ESPN.com opines. Between taking over the franchise in 2006 and hiring Martinez, the Lerner family hadn’t given any of Davey Johnson, Matt Williams or Dusty Baker a contract longer than two years. Bud Black backed out of a deal to become the Nationals’ manager in 2015 thanks to their unwillingness to hand him a three-year deal, but the team avoided a repeat this time by committing to the respected Martinez.
- Yankees third base coach Joe Espada interviewed for the same position with the Red Sox and the bench coach job with the Astros, according to George A. King III of the New York Post. King first reported the interviews Saturday, but it was unclear then which roles Espada discussed with those teams. Espada’s contract with the Yankees is set to expire Tuesday.
- The fact that next year’s free agent class is far more star-studded than this winter’s will complicate the Red Sox’s offseason plans, Chad Jennings of the Boston Herald writes. With the likes of Bryce Harper, Clayton Kershaw, Manny Machado and Josh Donaldson among those who could reach the market in a year, the Red Sox and other teams will have to weigh whether to spend significant money on anyone in the coming months. Although, there are still plenty of impending free agents and trade candidates who could pique Boston’s interest, notes Jennings, who runs down a variety of potential targets for the club.