The Nationals name their managerial prospects. At least we think they do.

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Fresh off of snagging some top-notch front office talent, the Nats are setting their sights on their next manager.  From the excellent Federal Baseball Nats blog:

Former DC GM Jim Bowden sent out a tweet yesterday listing the candidates for the Nationals’ job opening on the bench which read simply, “Nats MGR search includes: Mattingly,Duncan,Yost,Riggleman & BValen,” and now this afternoon, Bowden’s back with an updated list which includes a few new names:

“Up-Dated Nationals Managerial Candidates: Mattingly, Valentine, Mills, Melvin, Cora, Yost, Bowa.”

Some interesting names there to be sure. Mattingly is a guy a lot of people would like to see get a shot to manage.  Valentine is fun, of course.  Joey Cora may be fun too, at least if his years under Ozzie Guillen have rubbed off (I love Ozzie Guillen, at least as long as he’s not managing my team).  Melvin and Bowa seem like retreads I wouldn’t want on a young team.  Yost is also a retread, but maybe a good one given that he has experience shepherding a team with prospects to the next level.  I know nothing about Mills aside from the fact that he’s the Red Sox’ bench coach. Perhaps Boston fans can enlighten us as to his qualifications in the comments.

Of course, I do have one question: If this really came from a Jim Bowden tweet, how in the hell is he privy to this kind of information? He was disgraced and subsequently fired last spring, and my sense is that the Nats went on a much-needed de-Bowedenification campaign in the front office after he was shown the door. Does Bowden have a mole deep within Nats’ HQ, or is he just speculating like the rest of us?

If the later, I have to tell you Jim:  I’ve been let go by employers before. The quickest way to recover is to quit thinking about what they’re doing now that you’re gone and look towards the future.

(link via BTF)

Braves ink Blaine Boyer to a minor league deal

DENVER, CO - OCTOBER 2:  Relief pitcher Blaine Boyer #48 of the Milwaukee Brewers delivers to home plate during the seventh inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field on October 2, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
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The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.

Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.

Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.

Report: Rays nearing a deal with Shawn Tolleson

ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 18: Reliever Shawn Tolleson #37 of the Texas Rangers pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals in the eighth inning at Busch Stadium on June 18, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
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Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.

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Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.

Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.