The Orioles continue to not hire Buck Showalter. Is it by design?

3 Comments

Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that, despite some suggestions that Buck Showalter is all but hired as the Orioles manager, the O’s aren’t going to change their skipper any time soon.  At least not through the trade deadline, and possibly longer.  Connolly writes “whether a change will be made in August, September, at the end of the season or at all has not yet been determined.”

For his part, Buck Showalter says he’s fine with the timeline and how it’s all being handled. Which makes me wonder if this delay isn’t being done in conjunction with Showalter’s wishes.

You’ll recall that when Showalter took the Arizona job a couple of years before the Diamondbacks even took the field.  There was a big to-do at the time about how he wanted all that time to prepare and do all of the Buck Showaltery organizational things he’s noted for.  I can’t help but wonder if he has a wink-wink agreement with the O’s in which they’ve told him they’re going to hire him but he doesn’t want to take over in the middle of a lost season.  If that were the case even naming him manager for 2011 right now could work to undermine Juan Samuel as he tries to finish 2010 with a bit of dignity.

This is just speculation on my part, of course, but crazier things have happened.

Report: Phillies want a top-five prospect for Jeremy Hellickson

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 20: Starting pitcher Jeremy Hellickson #58 of the Philadelphia Phillies throws a pitch in the second inning during a game against the Miami Marlins at Citizens Bank Park on July 20, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
Hunter Martin/Getty Images
2 Comments

Starter Jeremy Hellickson has become the Phillies’ most enticing trade chip as he’s put together a solid month of July. After shutting out the Marlins on one hit and one walk over six innings on Monday, the right-hander lowered his July ERA to 1.97 and his overall ERA to 3.65. As a result, the Phillies are telling teams they want a top-five prospect to part with Hellickson, per ESPN’s Jayson Stark.

Obviously, a top-five prospect means something different if you’re the Marlins as opposed to the Rangers. And the Phillies’ price point for Hellickson isn’t likely to stay that high, but GM Matt Klentak is setting a lofty starting point so that the return might end up being higher than market value.

ESPN’s Buster Olney speculates that the Phillies could end up holding onto Hellickson and giving him a qualifying offer after the season. He notes that the Phillies have only $25 million tied up for the 2017 season, so they could afford to pay Hellickson in excess of $16 million if he were to accept.

Video: Matt Cain launches a three-run home run

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JULY 26: Matt Cain #18 of the San Francisco Giants hits a three run home run against the Cincinnati Reds during the second inning at AT&T Park on July 26, 2016 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images
Leave a comment

Madison Bumgarner isn’t the only Giants pitcher who can rake. Matt Cain crushed a three-run home run during Tuesday’s game against the Giants.

Cain stepped to the plate with runners on the corner and one out against Reds starter Cody Reed in the bottom of the second inning. Reed threw a 1-1 fastball down the middle and Cain hit it about 20 rows back in the left field seats.

It’s Cain’s first homer of the season, his first since 2012, and the seventh of his 12-year career. He still has some work to catch up to Bumgarner, who has two homers this year and 13 in his career.

On the pitching side of things, Cain got the win against the Reds on Tuesday night, giving up four runs on six hits and a walk with four strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings. He currently holds an ugly 5.95 ERA.