Given the spike of coronavirus cases in Florida and Arizona, the Mets and Yankees are both planning on moving their spring facilities to New York for the time being, per MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman. Any potential 2020 season is likely to be heavily dependent upon regional play, so it makes a certain amount of sense for both New York franchises to get settled into their home state (especially considering the rash of breakouts that caused all 30 teams to shut down their training facilities for the time being). The Mets and Yankees might not be the only clubs making this move, as USA Today’s Bob Nightengale tweets that all MLB clubs will be moving their spring training to their home cities. Nightengale does add the caveat that the Blue Jays may stay in Florida for the time being, and there were as many as five teams on Friday with thoughts of staying in Florida (Twitter links).
Let’s check in on other news from around the game…
- Former Dodgers first baseman James Loney has been hired by the GEM Agency in an advisory role, tweets Robert Murray. GEM launched in October 2019 based out of Dallas, Texas. They rep current big leaguers Justin Turner, Tommy Pham, and Roberto Osuna – which are all tracked in MLBTR’s Agency Database. Loney played 11 seasons in the big leagues, with his most productive years coming with the Dodgers from 2006 to 2012. He was eventually traded to the Boston Red Sox in the Dodgers’ monster deal for Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Nick Punto. Loney would play just half a season in Boston before going on to post a pair of productive years with the Rays. He finished his playing career in 2016 as a 32-year-old with the New York Mets. For his career, the southpaw first baseman put up a line of .284/.336/.410 with 108 home runs in 5,487 plate appearances.
- Alex Cora will be eligible to return to Major League Baseball in 2021, and the former Red Sox skipper would love to return to the managing ranks, Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe writes. How soon there will be interest in Cora as a manager remains to be seen given his role in the investigations into both the Astros and Red Sox sign-stealing allegations. Still, he has a tremendous track record in his short time as the Red Sox manager. Like many of us, Cora remains in wait-and-see mode for the time being. Said Cora, “If this was a regular time and they were playing games, I would say yes [to managing in 2021]. I would love to be back in 2021 in some capacity. I love managing at the big league level. But right now, I’m still kind of like putting my game plan together. It’s not where I want it to be. But obviously with everything that’s going on, with my daughter going into her senior year of high school, we as a family have to see what we want to do.”