A rousing World Series hasn’t come without its controversies. On the field, questions have arisen about the baseballs themselves, as SI.com’s Tom Verducci discusses. The balls being used for the series are slicker than regular season ball, some players and coaches say, with some even feeling there have been differences through the postseason. This follows on a long-running debate over “juiced” balls in the regular season. It’ll be interesting to see whether and how the league addresses the subject over the winter.
Here are some notes from out west:
- The Athletics may be putting out trade feelers on young power hitter Ryon Healy, per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. As she notes, he mostly fits in a DH capacity on the current roster, but the team may prefer to bump Khris Davis into that slot. The 25-year-old Healy isn’t considered much of a defender, and only posted a .302 OBP last year, but has already blasted 38 home runs in 888 MLB plate appearances. Slusser suggests that the A’s might attempt to draw back some relief pitching in a hypothetical trade.
- Slusser also has the latest on Athletics catcher Bruce Maxwell. He was arrested for “allegedly waving a gun at a food delivery person” in a troubling incident that Slusser details. It’s not yet clear how the matter will impact Maxwell’s status with the team, but it seems he will be referred to MLB’s Joint Treatment Program, as Slusser notes. Maxwell, 26, is expected to play a significant role for the A’s next year as part of the club’s youth movement, but it seems he’ll have to address some other matters before the spring.
- Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News takes a good look at the Rangers’ possibilities in left field, a position in quite some flux for the team. It may be that it ends up featuring a “cast of characters,” as Grant puts it. Slugger Joey Gallo and speedster Delino DeShields could see time in left if they aren’t used as primary options elsewhere. And top prospect Willie Calhoun, the main piece acquired in the Yu Darvish deal, could run with the position but may first need to iron out his glovework at Triple-A. What’s most interesting here, perhaps, is that the range of options seemingly leaves the club with some flexibility as it enters the offseason.