Major League Baseball conducted its interview with Miguel Sano today as part of its investigation into assault allegations that were brought forth against him back in December, report La Velle E. Neal III and Phil Miller of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune. Sano missed the Twins’ afternoon workouts today as he complied with the investigation and won’t be in the lineup for their evening game. As Neal and Miller note, the interview figures to be one of the league’s final steps in its investigation into the allegations against Sano. Once the investigation is complete, the results will be presented to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred, who will then determine whether any discipline is required for the Minnesota third baseman.
A bit more from the AL Central…
- Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield got his first exposure to center field in roughly a half decade in yesterday’s Cactus League game, writes MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan. The 29-year-old Merrifield played more than 600 innings of center in his first two years of pro ball but has been primarily playing infield in recent years. However, with Alcides Escobar back in the fold, the Royals will give Merrifield some looks in center field. If Merrifield proves capable in the outfield, he could fill that need while also potentially opening second base for prospect Adalberto Mondesi, who, it should be noted, will now be utilizing his middle name rather than his first name. Mondesi, who previously went by his first name, Raul, recently explained the decision to reporters (including Flanagan), noting that he’d long gone by his middle name before moving to pro ball. “Back home, everyone knows me by that,” said Mondesi, the son of former NL Rookie of the Year and All-Star Raul Mondesi.
- While many Indians fans were happy to see Mike Napoli reunited with the organization earlier this morning when he agreed to a minor league deal, manager Terry Francona tempered expectations regarding Napoli’s chances of making the club (link via MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian). “He wanted a chance to be in a Major League camp,” said Francona. “There’s a decent chance we’re going to get him ready to have him go on another team and help beat us. Saying that, I think we all felt like he deserved it. He’s such a pro, so special to us.” Francona added that he was extremely honest and forthcoming with Napoli about the lack of immediate opportunity, although as Bastian notes, the well-respected and well-liked Napoli provides a nice depth option in the case of an injury. And, Josh Tomlin raved to Bastian about the team’s excitement over having Napoli in the clubhouse, even if it’s only for a short time.