According to the Associated Press, six-time All-Star Curt Schilling has been hired as a baseball analyst for ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight” and will make his debut during pregame coverage of tonight’s season opening game between the Yankees and Red Sox.
He will also carry a few other responsibilities, including appearances on ESPN Radio and ESPNBoston.com. The outspoken Schilling will no doubt bring some much-needed energy to the BBTN set, but you have to wonder if the image-conscious network is in over its head with this one. Schilling speaks his mind, sometimes to a fault, and even runs his own blog at 38pitches.com. To censor him would almost defeat the purpose of the hire, wouldn’t it?
Schilling, now 43, spent 20 seasons in the major leagues, playing for the Orioles, Astros, Phillies, Diamondbacks and Red Sox. He boasts a 216-146 career record, a 3.46 career ERA and a 1.14 career WHIP. He was the runner-up in Cy Young Award voting three times. Not a bad resume.
The Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Angels have completed a minor trade: Atlanta is sending righty reliever David Hernandez to the Angels in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations.
Hernandez hasn’t pitched in the big leagues this year. He’s pitched in seven games at Triple-A, allowing one earned run in eight innings of work. In seven years of big league work he’s got an ERA of 4.10 in 379 games. Last year he put up a 3.84 ERA in 70 games for the Phillies.
I’m assuming the PTBNL is not Mike Trout.
The Nationals began the year with Blake Treinen as their closer. That didn’t last long, and now Koda Glover seems to be Dusty Baker’s man in the ninth inning. He earned a save for the second consecutive game yesterday. Glover has been pretty darn good in the early going, posting a 2.35 ERA and striking out six batters and walking only one in seven and two-thirds. That obviously a small sample size, and anything can happen. If it does, Baker has Shawn Kelley as an option.
Not many household names there, which is probably why the Nationals are reported to be interested in the White Sox’ David Robertson and Alex Colome of the Rays. That report comes from Jim Bowden of ESPN, who also notes that the A’s have a number of guys with closing experience on staff and are likely to be sellers too. The David Robertson thing may have more legs, though, given that Mike Rizzo and Rick Hahn pulled off a pretty major trade in the offseason. If you know a guy well, you call that guy first, right?
As far as problems go this isn’t a huge one. The Nats sit at 13-5 and, as expected by most prognosticators, are in first place in the National League East. The Cubs had some questions in the pen this time last year too. They had the luxury of trying to figure it out before making a massive trade for a closer. The Nats do too, and likely will. But expect them to be a part of any trade rumor conversation for the next couple of months.