Managerial chaos! Ok, maybe not, but it's fun to consider

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FanHouse’s Ed Price has a profile of Cito Gaston today that’s interesting in and of itself, but he ends the piece with a fun little musing about an unlikely but delicious series of managerial moves this winter:

  • Joe Torre leaves the Dodgers as they look for ways to cut costs;
  • Dusty Baker, dissatisfied with the contract extension offered by the Reds, going to L.A., where he played eight seasons;
  • Tony La Russa, his contract up with the Cardinals, goes to Cincinnati in a reunion with general manager Walt Jocketty (they were together in Oakland and St. Louis); and
  • Torre goes to the Cards, where he played (1969-74) and managed (1990-95).

Setting aside the fact that the Cardinals, Dodgers and Reds would all likely be worse off with their new iconic manager than they were with their old one, such a scenario would certainly make blogging a hell of a lot easier over the winter and spring. Storylines, baby! Storylines!

Jon Gray will start Opening Day for the Rockies

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Manager Bud Black has tabbed Jon Gray to start on Opening Day for the Rockies. That will be Monday, April 3 in Milwaukee against the Brewers in an afternoon contest.

Gray, 25, is starting Opening Day for the first time in his career. He’ll be the sixth different Rockies pitcher to start Opening Day in as many years.

The Rockies and Gray had a bit of a scare on Friday as he left his spring training start with discomfort in his left foot, but everything came up clean in an MRI. He pitched again on Wednesday with no issue.

Last season, Gray went 10-10 with a 4.61 ERA and a 185/59 K/BB ratio in 168 innings. A consensus top prospect entering each of the previous three seasons, Gray surprisingly put up better numbers at Coors Field — the most hitter-friendly park in baseball — than away.

Blake Treinen named Nationals closer

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Today Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker named Blake Treinen as his closer. Treinen has saved exactly one big league game.

There wasn’t necessarily an obvious choice, however. Last year Washington had Mark Melancon, but with him gone and GM Mike Rizzo’s failure to land a high-profile closer in the offseason, it became a contest between Treinen Shawn Kelley and Koda Glover.

Treinen posted a 2.28 ERA with 31 walks and 63 Ks in 67 innings in 2016. His big improvement last year came against lefties, who had tattooed him in the past. He pitched well this spring as well, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything.

The Nats are our favorites to win the NL East, but we do have some questions about the pen. Blake Treinen will take the first crack at answering them.