Over the weekend, Joe Torre played the “sure, I’d listen if the Mets called” card, saying that the
Mets “are certainly an inviting situation.” The only problem: Jerry Manuel is still the manager of the Mets. Andy Martino the Daily News just spoke with Manuel about it, and this is what he said:
“I find it curious when someone comments about a job somebody already has . . .that’s not integrity
Look, you know that Jerry Manuel won’t be managing the Mets in 2011, and I know it too. I’m willing to bet that both Manuel and Torre know it as well. But while the papers and the fans and the bloggers can scream for a manager’s head, there has to be a certain etiquette, it seems, about managers talking about other jobs when those jobs aren’t open. In this I’m in agreement with Manuel. The comments by Torre were not good form.
And Torre can’t reasonably claim that he was speaking hypothetically or taken out of context on this. He’s been around this league for about 50 years, and he’s been managing for over 30 of those years. He has to know by now that when you’re talking to a reporter from the New York Post about the Mets that you’re being asked if you want that job.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.