Jason Bay says a return this year is now "highly unlikely"


The hits keep coming for this Mets organization.

Outfielder Jason Bay told Adam Rubin of ESPN New York on Wednesday that he is “highly unlikely” to return to the big leagues this season despite showing signs of progress from a concussion.

Bay was placed on the disabled list in late July after suffering a concussion while running head-first into an outfield wall.  He’s no longer having headaches, but concussion victims are limited to only light workouts and he won’t be able to get his timing right before the end of the regular season.

“Given the lack of things that I’ve done at this point to get back on
there, I understand it’s probably highly unlikely, but it’s still a
goal,” Bay said Wednesday.  “Every day that passes and you don’t take these giant leaps forward, you realize you’re that much further behind.”

The 31-year-old Bay had a disappointing .259/.347/.402 batting line, six home runs and 47 RBI in 95 games before going down.  He is owed $48 million over the next three seasons.

Wild Card, Division series umpires announced

Angel Hernandez
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Major League Baseball just released the umpire assignments for the Wild Card Game and the Division Series. As always, the basis for these assignments is a proprietary, scientific calculation undertaken by Major League Baseball, mixing in (a) skill; (b) seniority; and (c) trolling of baseball bloggers who, unlike 99% of the rest of the world actually know the names and track records of various umpires and who are easily riled.

Which is to say that, while we have no Joe West in the early playoff rounds this year — too obvious, perhaps? — we do get an Angel Hernandez.

Here are the assignments. The asterisks represent the crew chief of each unit. Guys with little up arrows next to their names are regular season crew chiefs in their own right. Print this out and keep it near your television so you know who to yell about before the broadcasters tell you who to yell at:

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Which teams improved and declined the most in 2015?

Joe Maddon

I was curious about which MLB teams changed their fortunes the most this season compared to last year, so I crunched the numbers.

First, here are the biggest win total improvements from 2014 to 2015:

+24 Cubs
+21 Rangers
+16 Astros
+15 Diamondbacks
+13 Twins
+11 Mets
+10 Blue Jays
+10 Cardinals
+10 Pirates

The top five teams on the biggest-improvement list all had managers in their first season on the job, led by Joe Maddon joining the Cubs after tons of success with the Rays. Also worth noting: Of the nine teams with the biggest win total improvement, seven made the playoffs. Only the Twins and Diamondbacks improved to double-digit games and still failed to make the playoffs.

Now, here are the biggest win total declines from 2014 to 2015:

-20 Athletics
-16 Tigers
-15 Orioles
-14 Brewers
-13 Nationals
-13 Angels
-12 Braves
-12 Reds
-11 Mariners

Not surprisingly, a whole lot of those teams have changed managers, general managers, or both. And a couple more may still do so before the offseason gets underway. Oakland retained manager Bob Melvin despite an MLB-high 20-win dropoff and just promoted Billy Beane from general manager to vice president of baseball operations.