And yet more fallout from the sign-stealing investigation:
Thanks to what some very creative person on Twitter has dubbed “Bangghazi”, there are three major league teams seeking managers just weeks before their players show up for spring training. Astros, Mets and Red Sox are all trying to fill those positions. Eduardo Perez has interviewed with Houston; Dusty Baker has been linked to the Mets and Astros. Some reports suggest that the Red Sox may go with an internal hire at least on an interim basis, with bench coach Ron Roenicke a likely option.
Evan Drellich, who helped break the sign-stealing story, has a thoughtful essay on what it will take for baseball to regain the trust of players and fans moving forward. MLB and the MLB Players Association need to work together, he says, and consider both technological changes and other innovations. ($)
Tampa Bay Times baseball beat writer Marc Topkin shares his Hall of Fame ballot, and the thinking behind it. ($)
These went live last week and have probably been linked before, but Neil Solondz’s pre-season interviews are well worth a listen. In his most recent podcast he introduces us to newly acquired prospect Xavier Edwards, who sounds very thoughtful and poised, and whose other sport in high school was tennis. Great interviews as well with Vidal Brujan, Chris Betts and others.
Do you want to spend some quality time with Rays players before they report to Port Charlotte? Fanfest will take place at Tropicana Field on February 8th. It’s free, but adults must download tickets. The Rays website has information on activities and players expected to be in attendance. You’ll be able to meet Yoshitomo Tsutsugo and say hello to old friends like Blake Snell, Tyler Glasnow, Austin Meadows, Brandon Lowe and Charlie Morton.
Ryan Sherriff, a 29-year-old lefty pitcher with great ground ball numbers who was signed by the Rays after his late 2018 Tommy John surgery, is throwing again. He’s been sharing some video on Twitter:
I have been working on my hip hinge since yesterday’s bullpen was not ideal with my lower half. So today was the hardest ive thrown all offseason and had the most movement on the two seamer. @PitchingNinja pic.twitter.com/BwoyhYoYo4— Ryan Sherriff (@KingSherriff) January 20, 2020
And Trevor Richards’ changeup is getting some respect: