The Brewers are planning an announcement Monday regarding reports that they have rehired former front-office official Ray Montgomery to lead Milwaukee’s amateur scouting department, general manager Doug Melvin said late Friday.
A third World Series championship parade in five seasons only adds to general manager Brian Sabean’s resume.
The Dodgers have declined their option on starting pitcher Chad Billingsley, Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times tweets. Given the cost of the option ($14MM minus a $3MM buyout) and Billingsley’s struggles to stay healthy, the move comes as no surprise. Billingsley was once among baseball’s more promising young arms, but he’s pitched only 12 big league innings since September 2012 after a series of elbow injuries and setbacks. He had Tommy John surgery in April 2013. For his career, Billingsley has a 3.65 ERA with 7.9 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in parts of eight seasons, but he’s now very far removed from his last productive season. The Dodgers took Billingsley in the first round in 2003, and he’s spent his entire career with Los Angeles, but now, at age 30, he’s a free agent.
Here are today’s minor moves from around baseball. The Mets have outrighted relievers Scott Rice, Dana Eveland and Buddy Carlyle, Marc Carig of Newsday tweets. The moves leave 34 players on the Mets’ 40-man roster. Rice struck out 13 batters but walked 12 in an extreme specialist role in New York this season, pitching just 13 2/3 innings over 32 appearances. Eveland, also a lefty, had a strong year, posting a 2.63 ERA with 8.9 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in 27 1/3 innings. The righty Carlyle also had some success, posting a 1.45 ERA with 8.1 K/9 and 1.5 BB/9 in 31 innings.
The Cubs have announced the firing of manager Rick Renteria. The move doesn’t come as a large surprise, given recent reports that the team has agreed to terms with Joe Maddon to become their new manager.
The Blue Jays announced that they have signed veteran left-hander Jeff Francis to a minor league contract with an invitation to big league Spring Training.
What’s the obvious need for the 2015 Royals, fresh from their first World Series experience in 29 years? Right off the bat, you’d have to say more bats. Productive bats. Maybe even some that could get Kansas City off the bottom of the American League home run list. Yet, playing in spacious Kauffman Stadium means that the Royals will stay with their emphasis on pitching, defense and speed.
The A’s announced that they’ve claimed outfielder Andrew Brown off waivers from the Mets. Additionally, minor league shortstop Tyler Ladendorf has been added to the club’s 40-man roster to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft in December. Brown, 30, received 49 plate appearances for the Mets this season and batted .182/.245/.341 with a pair of homers. He’s seen action in parts of four big league seasons between the Mets, Rockies and Cardinals, compiling a batting line of .220/.281/.390. As indicated by that .170 ISO (slugging minus average), Brown does possess some pop that likely appealed to the A’s. His Triple-A numbers are indicative of that power as well, as he owns a lifetime .298/.380/.555 slash at that level. Ladendorf was acquired from the Twins in 2009 in exchange for shortstop Orlando Cabrera. The Howard College product, Minnesota’s second-round pick in 2008, had never hit at the Triple-A level before this, his age-26 season. However, he slashed a strong .297/.376/.407 in 318 plate appearances with Triple-A this season, and Oakland has a clear need for middle infield options following the trade of Addison Russell and the free agency of Jed Lowrie
Over the past six weeks, the Mets hired a hitting coach, moved in their fences and extended the contract of general manager Sandy Alderson, checking three boxes off their offseason to-do list. But the most pressing issue still remains for a Mets club on the precipice of playoff contention — a legitimate corner-outfield bat.
With the World Series in the books, the Hot Stove season officially begins, with nine Orioles becoming free agents. The biggest name to hit the market is Nelson Cruz.