Major League Baseball has suspended Jim Leyland for tonight’s game against the Rays. There is no appeals process for managers, so he’ll have to sit it out. Which is complete and utter b.s.
You’ll recall what led to this: Leyland’s altercation with umpire Marty Foster. You’ll recall the specifics: Foster blows a call — partially because he really wasn’t in a good position to make it — and Leyland argues. A bit of spittle or a sunflower seed flies from Leyland’s mouth, Harvey baselessly and quite ridiculously accuses Leyland of spitting on him and tosses him. Watch the video and you’ll see just how crazy that claim really is.
Of course I’m sure MLB will say that it wasn’t the altercation, it was Leyland’s critical words after the fact which led to his suspension. Never mind that Leyland was right. Never mind that umpires such as Joe West have routinely ripped teams and players and have instigated ugly incidents on the field this season without getting any discipline whatsoever. But the second a manager or a player dares point out the bleedin’ obvious — that today’s umpiring corps is filled with incompetent, thin-skinned megalomaniacs — he has to take the day off without pay.
Baseball does a lot of things right. Intellectual honesty and a basic sense of justice when it comes to issues relating to umpires is not one of those things.
Ken Rosenthal has found out the ten teams on Yu Darvish‘s no-trade list per his contract. They are the Orioles, Red Sox, Cubs, Indians, Rockies, White Sox, Tigers, A’s, Pirates and Blue Jays. He has no right to veto trades to any other team.
As we’ve noted in recent days, the Dodgers are said to have a “strong interest” in Darvish. It’d not be at all surprising to see other contenders in on him too, at least as long as the Rangers keep listening to offers. In the no-trade category, it would seem that the Cubs and Indians would have a need, but it’s doubtful the Indians would make that kind of deal. The Cubs may, but of course they’d have to sweeten the deal for Darvish in order to get him to agree to waive his no-trade rights (which is often the point of having a no-trade provision).
Beyond the Dodgers, the Yankees and Astros are obvious potential suitors.
Darvish is 6-8 with a 3.44 ERA and has struck out 143 batters to only 43 walks in 133.1 innings.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the Kansas City Royals are in talks with the Toronto Blue Jays about a trade for Francisco Liriano.
Liriano is not having a good year, but an arm is an arm I suppose. Liriano’s arm has posted 5.99 ERA and 70/42 K/BB ratio through 76.2 innings across 17 starts. He’s a free agent to be, so he shouldn’t cost too much, of course.
Earlier this week Kansas City picked up Trevor Cahill, Brandon Maurer, and Ryan Buchter from the Padres. They’ve also won seven in a row and are just a game and a half behind the first place Indians. They’re going for it with whatever help they can find.