UPDATE: I guess I jumped the gun earlier when I said that the Manny-to-the-White Sox thing was a done deal as a straight waiver claim, because it’s only within the last few minutes that all of the reputable reporters are saying it’s confirmed. Maybe I dreamed it all.
Also, Nightengale has now backtracked from his earlier report: Manny was waiting for the deal to be finalized before leaving for Cleveland. He will still join the team sometime tonight, but won’t make it in time to be in the lineup.
11:03 A.M.: Bob Nightengale just tweeted that Manny Ramirez is en route to Cleveland as we speak and thus should be in the lineup for tonight’s White Sox-Indians matchup.
It will be cute to see national writers try to jam in some “Manny-returns-to-Cleveland” angle to this. Indians fans really don’t care much about him anymore. He left there after the 2000 season, for crying out loud. That’s ancient history for Indians fans. Sandy Alomar, Chuck Finley, Charles Nagy and David Justice played on that team. It was, like, 110 Manny-years ago.
By the way, it’s been confirmed that the transaction to send Ramirez to Chicago was a straight waiver claim deal with nothing going back to Los Angeles other than the salary relief Manny’s one month and change away from the team will bring.
Buster Olney of ESPN reports that the Blue Jays have signed Steve Pearce to a two-year deal worth $12.5 million.
Pearce, 33 had some health issues in 2016, but he hit .288/.374/.492 across 302 plate appearances when he was on the field and he mashes lefties in particular. Pearce is versatile as well, logging time at first base, second base, right field, left field, and DH in 2016 while splitting time between the Rays and Orioles.
Last week Pirates infielder Jung Ho Kang was arrested in South Korea for driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of an accident. That’s bad, but it turns out that it’s nothing new. The Yonhapnews Agency reports that Kang has been arrested for DUI three times since 2009:
Gangnam Police Station in southern Seoul confirmed that it was Kang’s third DUI arrest, with the three strikes law resulting in the immediate revocation of his license. According to police, Kang had also been arrested for a DUI in August 2009 and May 2011. No personal injuries were reported in either case, though he’d caused property damage in the latter incident.
The report also notes that a companion of Kang initially claimed that he, and not Kang, was behind the wheel at the time of the accident which led to Kang’s arrest last week. It was later revealed by the car’s black box, however, that Kang was driving. So add in some obstruction of justice, whether it is charged or not, to the scene. Police are investigating that.
Between all of this and the fact that Kang is under investigation for an alleged sexual assault in Chicago this past season, a pretty ugly portrait of the Pirates’ infielder is beginning to reveal itself.