Former Brewers GM Doug Melvin says he’s sleeping better in the six months since he ceded the team’s GM job to David Stearns, MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy writes. Now a senior advisor, Melvin has continued to work in player development with the Brewers, but he’s also taken more time for himself. “It’s like the difference between a coach and a manager. When you’re a coach, you have your certain responsibilities. You’re available. But when you’re the manager, you feel responsible to 25 players, plus the coaches and the trainers and everybody,” says Melvin. As a GM, he says, “[you feel a total responsibility. Pro scouting, amateur scouting, international scouting, player development, the Major League team — there’s always something to think about.” Here’s more from the Central divisions.
- Tigers owner Mike Ilitch is the closest thing the game has to a modern-day George Steinbrenner, writes Joel Sherman of the New York Post. After adding Justin Upton and Jordan Zimmermann this offseason, the Tigers have four players signed to nine-figure contracts. Of course, the ends of those kinds of contracts can create roster flexibility issues of the sort the Yankees have dealt with in recent years, and Sherman notes that the Tigers already have $122MM committed for the 2018 season for Upton, Zimmermann, Miguel Cabrera, Justin Verlander and Victor Martinez.
- Twins star Joe Mauer says lingering concussion symptoms caused him to have blurred vision while hitting the past two seasons, Brian Murphy of the Pioneer Press writes. The vision issues were caused by sunlight, Mauer says he will try hitting with sunglasses in an effort to improve his ability to pick up pitches. “If you’re just a little off, you’re fouling off pitches you should be driving into the gap,” says Mauer. “In the big leagues, you don’t get too many more opportunities to see good ones to hit.” Mauer adds that he does not want his concussion issues to be an “excuse” for his performance the last two seasons, in which he’s seen a dramatic decline in offense. (He’s hit .270/348/.376 the last two years, compared to a previous career average of .323/.405/.468.) Mauer is still signed for the next three years at $23MM per season, so he could provide a big long-term boost to the Twins if he were to get back on track.