Cal Ripken tells Bloomberg that the managing itch is getting stronger, and as the years go by he’s more and more likely to scratch it.
The Hall of Famer, who retired in 2001 after 21 years with the Orioles, has said before that he was interested in managing, but wanted to wait until his kids had grown up and left home. Well, that time is coming, as his daughter Rachel is in college and his son Ryan is a sophomore in high school.
“I valued that time frame and I wanted to be there, and I’m starting to think about it a little more now,” Ripken said in an interview with Bloomberg Radio’s “Bloomberg Surveillance.” “When my boy goes off to college, if there’s a time to come back to the game, maybe that’s the time.”
I’m not surprised Ripken would like to get back into the game, and it’s admirable that he is waiting until his kids are grown. It seems like a lot of ballplayers, after giving the “I want to spend more time with my family” speech, last about a year before going stir crazy.
What I’m worried about, however, is what Cal will do the first time one of his players asks to take a day off.
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OXON HILL, MD — Edwin Encarnacion began the offseason as, arguably, the second most desirable free agent on the market. As the Winter Meetings approach their end, however, he is a man without a team. And may not have a team any time soon.
Many teams have been rumored to be checking in on Encarnacion, but the defining trait of his free agency thus far has been clubs taking a pass. The most recent one being the Rangers, who are reported to simply not have the money to sign him, despite him filling a clear offensive need in Texas. Maybe the Rangers would be more competitive on the free agent market if they had a new stadium. Who knows?
The Blue Jays, for whom he most recently played, offered him a four-year, $80 million deal that most figured was a lowball, and when he rejected it, they moved on to Kendrys Morales. The Red Sox acquired Mitch Moreland. The Yankees are reported to be passing. The most recent team linked to Encarnacion is the Indians, who are reported to have an offer out to him, but at this point it’s likely far lower than what most free agent watchers thought he might get a few weeks ago. A four-year, $90 million deal did not seem crazy for him in October. In December, there is speculation that he could be had for $60 million over that same term which, frankly, would be a bargain. That’s less than Mark Melancon, the third best closer on the market, got from the Giants.
There have been a lot of remarkable things that have happened in the past few weeks, but one of the most unexpected things would be one of the top bats in the game getting second-tier closer money.
OXON HILL, MD — Bill King has been selected as the 2017 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, presented annually for excellence in broadcasting by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.
King, one of the iconic voices of Bay Area sports, was known for his handlebar mustache and his signature “Holy Toledo!” exclamation. King broadcast A’s games for 25 seasons, from 1981 through 2005. He likewise broadcast Oakland Raiders and Golden State Warriors games and got his start as an announcer for the Giants in the late 1950s after they moved to San Francisco.
King passed away in October 2005. With the Frick Award, however, he has now been immortalized among baseball broadcasters.