A few weeks ago, A Guy I Talked to Who Knows Stuff said that the Cubs players are big, big Mike Quade fans and wanted him to get the job. It was pretty obvious, however, that the players were going to keep quiet about it and let Jim Hendry and Tom Ricketts do their job because, ultimately, it’s their call. Ryan Dempster decided last night that keeping mum is no fun:
Dempster, who notched his 15th win with seven strong innings, became the first Cubs player to outwardly endorse Quade for the job in 2011.
been very upfront, very honest with all of us,” Dempster said. “He’s
been tremendously supportive, he’s given us a lot of confidence to go
out there. What he’s done for the bullpen- those guys have really
stepped up and he’s believed in them.
done a great job and I hope that he’s here longer than just this year. I
hope he’s managing for us next year because he deserves it. He’s done
everything they’ve asked, and everyone in here really likes him.”
If the Cubs make Mike Quade the manager over Ryne Sandberg, there will be a lot of bummed fans. But those will be fans who haven’t been paying attention to the fact that the Cubs have played good baseball for Quade. And ultimately, making a managerial choice based on fan sentiment — especially casual fan sentiment — is madness.
The players like him and want him to stay. He’s done a fine job. The smart play, it seems, would be to give Mike Quade the gig full time.
Dodgers’ left fielder Andrew Toles crushed his first spring training home run on Saturday afternoon. With the bases loaded and a two-run deficit hanging over their heads in the fourth inning, Toles stepped up to the plate against Oakland right-hander Jesse Hahn and unloaded a grand slam on the second pitch he saw.
Third baseman Justin Turner was quick to follow up with a solo jack of his own, bringing the score to a comfortable 7-4 lead by the end of the fourth. Another three-run outburst in the fifth and an eighth-inning RBI single by Austin Barnes raised the final score to 11-6… which, coincidentally, was the same score the Reds used to defeat the Athletics’ second split-squad lineup on Saturday (albeit with a few more RBI walks than grand slams).
Toles, 24, is approaching his sophomore season with the Dodgers in 2017. He slashed .314/.365/.505 with three home runs and an .870 OPS in his first major league season in 2016 and is expected to platoon with the right-handed Franklin Gutierrez in left field this year.
David Price showed “strength improvements” in his elbow on Saturday, but Red Sox’ manager John Farrell still doesn’t think the left-hander will be ready to throw by the start of the season — or for a few weeks afterward. According to ESPN’s Scott Lauber, the 31-year-old might not be ready to debut until May at the earliest.
Price hasn’t thrown off of a mound this spring after experiencing soreness in his left elbow on March 1. Surgery doesn’t appear to be necessary, but the Red Sox are playing it extra safe with their No. 3 starter in hopes that rest and rehabilitation will return him to full health sometime during the 2017 season. For now, Price has been restricted to short games of catch until he’s cleared to resume a more rigorous throwing program. Via MLB.com’s Ian Browne:
[There were] strength improvements to the point of putting the ball back in his hand a little more consistently,” said manager John Farrell. “Today’s the first step for that. A short game of catch. That’s what he’s going through. Not off a mound but just to get the arm moving with a ball in flight, and he will continue in this phase for a period of time. There’s no set distance and volume yet to the throws.
The lefty is coming off of a lackluster 2016 season, during which he delivered a 3.99 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 8.9 SO/9 over 230 innings for the Red Sox.