Outgoing Diamondbacks executive Tony La Russa discussed his decision to depart with MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert. He says that the club’s baseball decisionmaking is in “great hands” both at the front office and field level, which would be difficult to dispute after a strong season. It’s not yet clear what’s next for the legendary former skipper, though he says he has already been in contact with a few other teams.
Here’s more from out west:
- Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post breaks down the Rockies bullpen options entering the offseason. With Greg Holland, Jake McGee, and mid-season acquisition Pat Neshek all set to hit the open market, there are plenty of questions despite the generally promising performance of the unit in 2017. So long as Colorado is willing to spend near last year’s level (around $130MM), there ought to be some space to fit some reasonably significant salaries to fill out and improve the pen.
- The Rangers dealt away veterans at the 2017 trade deadline, but still don’t appear interested in a full-blown sell-off. Most notably, the team held veteran third baseman Adrian Beltre, who is entering the final season of his contract. GM Jon Daniels says that the club “will be designed with Adrian as our third baseman,” as Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News was among those to tweet. The Rangers’ head baseball decisionmaker suggested that Beltre and the organization have come to an understanding about the immediate direction, though he also noted that it’s at least theoretically possible the path could change. Beltre again battled through health problems to post an outstanding .312/.383/.532 slash. While he’s owed a hefty $18MM, the contract would still hold quite a lot of appeal to other organizations given Beltre’s sustained excellence. Still, it seems the Rangers will be looking to build around him rather than making a deal, though it remains unclear what kind of capacity the team has for veteran acquisitions.