* Chico Harlan of the Washington Post speculates that Nationals manager Manny Acta’s job is in danger after general manager Mike Rizzo tip-toed around the issue yesterday.
I’m an Acta fan because he’s engaging and interested in sabermetrics,
but he’s also 145-227 (.390) as Nationals skipper and the team has lost
15 of 17 games on the way to an MLB-worst 13-36 record.
* Jeremy Bonderman made his third minor-league rehab start last night at Triple-A,
totaling five strikeouts and zero walks over eight shutout innings.
However, his fastball was clocked at 88-90 miles per hour compared to
Bonderman’s pre-injury average of 92-94 mph.
* Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports
that “there is almost zero chance” of the Yankees re-signing impending
free agent Hideki Matsui “even if he were to finish with a strong
season.” Matsui is hitting .263/.347/.487 in 44 games and turns 35
years old next week.
* The poor Gatorade machine that Carlos Zambrano went berserk on last week has been designated for assignment by the Cubs.
Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.
Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.
Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.
Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.
Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.
Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.