The Cubs had miserable centerfield defense last year. Lou Piniella loves Mike Cameron. Mike Cameron loves Lou Piniella. Gordon Wittenmeyer of the Sun-Times says that these two love birds are about to stop pretending and get on with it already:
Center fielder Mike Cameron could take center stage for the Cubs by
the time the winter meetings begin Monday in Indianapolis, depending on
how quickly they can slam the door on Milton Bradley’s tail and how
much room is left in the payroll.
What’s clear is the Cubs’ interest and the strength of manager Lou
Piniella’s relationship with Cameron, who spent the past two seasons
Cameron makes just about any team he plays for better, and the Cubs certainly have a need. Makes all kinds of sense. The only hitch is that, according to Wittenmeyer, Chicago wants to move Milton Bradley first. There are a couple of teams waiting for the Cubs to get desperate on that front and throw in some more money. I would guess that if it means signing a guy they like and finally cutting bait with Bradley, they’ll just bite the bullet, pay up and be done with it.
Red Sox lefty Drew Pomeranz was of limited utility during the postseason as he began experiencing soreness in his left forearm near the end of the 2016 season. There was some thought that he might need offseason surgery but Pomeranz was examined by doctors who determined that he does not need any surgery, Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald reports. President of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski said:
He has seen the doctor, the doctor looked at him. I can’t really disclose totally everything that was done, but the doctor said no surgical procedure and the doctor feels he will be ready for next spring training for us.
Pomeranz, 27, finished the 2016 regular season with an aggregate 3.32 ERA and a 186/65 K/BB ratio in 170 2/3 innings between the Padres and Red Sox. He operated out of the bullpen during the playoffs, allowing two runs on four hits and two walks with seven strikeouts over 3 2/3 innings.
The Red Sox acquired Pomeranz in a trade with the Padres in July. It was a trade that earned Padres GM A.J. Preller a 30-day suspension from Major League Baseball, as he reportedly kept two sets of medical records in order to deceive trade partners.
After managing the Pirates’ Double-A affiliate to a 76-64 record this past season, the organization has promoted Joey Cora to third base coach for the major league club, Cory Giger of the Altoona Mirror reports. The Pirates fired previous third base coach Rick Sofield over the weekend.
Cora, 51, has plenty of coaching experience since retiring as a player in 1998. In the majors, he coached for the White Sox from 2004-11 and for the Marlins in 2012.
Cora briefly served as interim manager for the Marlins in 2012 when Ozzie Guillen was suspended, but has otherwise not been given a managerial position yet. He interviewed with the Brewers after the 2010 season and was a finalist but the organization ultimately chose Ron Roenicke. It’s easy to see Cora being a manager in the very near future, however.