How much of this is politeness towards the Cubs upon being asked a question about them and how much of this is Bobby V. actually wanting the job is hard to say, but . . .
The ESPN analyst and former New York Mets and Texas Rangers manager
says he’s interested in taking over for the retiring Lou Piniella after
Valentine, who led the Mets to the pennant in 2000 and managed the
Texas Rangers, calls the Cubs job “one of the most coveted positions in
all of sports” and adds “anybody who thinks of himself as a manager
would love to be considered as one of the people who might take his
place.” Valentine spoke before Sunday’s game between the Cubs and Cardinals.
He returned to ESPN during the 2009 playoffs after his second stint
as manager of the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan’s Pacific League. He says
he won’t leave the network “unless something very special came up,” and
the Cubs job “falls in the category of very special.”
I still can’t see how the Cubs could go in any direction but Ryne Sandberg. He’s a local legend who has clearly stated that he wants the job and, most importantly, he has put his time in down in the minors for the express purpose of getting it. If he isn’t given the job he leaves the organization, right?
Luis Severino will finally get his shot at an Opening Day start this year, the Yankees announced Saturday. According to manager Aaron Boone, he’ll lead a rotation comprised of Masahiro Tanaka, CC Sabathia, Sonny Gray and Jordan Montgomery. It’ll be the first time since 2014 that someone other than Tanaka has taken the ball for Opening Day.
Severino, 24, is fresh off of his best career year to date. The right-hander pitched to a 14-6 record in 31 starts with the Yankees in 2017 and earned an All-Star nomination and Cy Young award consideration with a 2.98 ERA, 2.4 BB/9, 10.7 SO/9 and 5.7 fWAR in 193 1/3 innings. “We feel like it’s his time for it,” Boone told reporters Saturday. “With what he was able to do last year, we feel like he’s in a really good place now. We just felt like now is the time for him to take on that role and we think he’s ready for it. I’m looking forward to seeing him grow in his role as one of the aces of this staff.”
Prior to Saturday, Severino pitched in just one Grapefruit League game this spring. He fired 3 1/3 innings against the Phillies, allowing three hits and one unearned run and striking out three batters.
The Yankees are scheduled to kick off the season on March 29 against the Blue Jays. Jordan Montgomery will start their home opener against the Rays on April 2.