Various reports are swirling that the Diamondbacks will remove the interim tag and make Kirk Gibson their full-time manager with a multi-year contract.
However, new general manager Kevin Towers downplayed that speculation yesterday and said he’s still just “getting to know Gibby.”
This is really still a getting-to-know-each-other session. When we start negotiations, nobody is going to know. To me I don’t like discussing contract negotiations. Nothing good comes of that. Nothing is going to happen until the season is completed, because to me this is an important time for me to evaluate the talent we have as well as get to know the coaches we have and Gibby. If there’s a comfort level with me and Gibby, I’ll probably just hire Gibby and not talk to anyone else. If I’m still a little bit unsure then it doesn’t mean that he’s out, but there might be other people I call and ask permission.
Nick Piecero of the Arizona Republic notes that Towers and Gibson had never even met prior to last week, which makes all the “Gibby” stuff sort of amusing.
Also amusing? When someone says “when we start negotiations, nobody is going to know” and then proceeds to downplay talk of contract negotiations taking place. Towers is basically saying, “We haven’t talked contract yet, but even if we did I wouldn’t tell you anyway.”
The Cubs had a scare on Wednesday night when third baseman Kris Bryant left with an apparent ankle injury. In the bottom of the fifth inning, Nationals catcher Matt Wieters hit a pop up that veered just into foul territory near the third base bag. Bryant caught it but his momentum took him back into fair territory. In doing so, he stepped awkwardly on the third base bag and appeared to twist his ankle. Bryant needed the assistance of manager Joe Maddon and the team trainer to get off the field.
Bryant was diagnosed with a mild ankle sprain, CSN Chicago’s Patrick Mooney reports.
Bryant was 2-for-3 on the night before departing and being replaced by Jeimer Candelario. He’s now hitting .264/.395/.520 with 16 home runs and 32 RBI in 329 plate appearances. Needless to say, the 39-39 Cubs would see their playoff odds hurt immensely if Bryant were to miss a significant amount of time.
Hector Gomez reports Twins third baseman Miguel Sano will participate in the 2017 Home Run Derby, to be held in two weeks at Marlins Park in Miami. So far, Marlins outfielder Giancarlo Stanton is the only other confirmed participant.
Sano, 24, is having an outstanding season, batting .274/.375/.548 with 18 home runs and 53 RBI in 293 plate appearances. According to MLB’s Statcast, only Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge (96.7 MPH) has a higher average exit velocity than Sano (96.4 MPH).
Brian Dozier was the last member of the Twins to participate in the Home Run Derby. In 2014 at Target Field, Dozier failed to make it into the second round after hitting only two home runs. Justin Morneau is the only Twin to have ever won the Home Run Derby, as he beat Josh Hamilton 5-3 in the finals of the 2008 Derby at Yankee Stadium — although Hamilton out-homered him in total 35 to 22.