This comes as a bit of surprise. But not really.
Tim Kurkjian of ESPN.com is reporting that Bobby Valentine has pulled himself out of the running for the Marlins’ managerial vacancy.
Valentine gave no reason for his decision, only saying that he has “decided to go in another direction,” but it’s safe to assume that he felt disrespected by the organization when he was not named Fredi Gonzalez’s replacement in June. The Marlins engaged in serious talks with Bobby V at that time and a deal seemed close, but Edwin Rodriguez was named interim skipper instead.
Valentine will be courted by the Mariners and Blue Jays this winter and maybe the Mets, once they figure out a new general manager. He has options, in other words, and would rather head to a club that really wants him than one that operates in an indecisive manner.
Former Phillies skipper Jim Fregosi, former D’Backs bench coach Po Porter and Yankees bench coach Tony Pena are believed to be candidates for the job in south Florida. Padres bench coach Ted Simmons and Dodgers minor league manager Tim Wallach have also been linked to the Fish.
Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen gave up three runs in the top of the ninth inning during Sunday’s game against the Braves, blowing his first save since August 26 last season. He had converted 34 consecutive saves.
Jansen yielded back-to-back singles to lead off the ninth inning, staked to a 4-1 lead. After getting two outs, Matt Adams hit a three-run home run down the right field line to knot the game at four apiece.
After Sunday’s lackluster performance, Jansen is now 24-for-25 in save chances this season with a 1.49 ERA and a 62/2 K/BB ratio in 42 1/3 innings.
Orioles closer Zach Britton finished Sunday’s 9-7 victory over the Astros with a scoreless ninth inning, earning his sixth save of the season. He has now earned the save in 55 consecutive opportunities dating back to September 2015, setting a new American League record. Tom Gordon previously held the record with 54 consecutive saves. Eric Gagne holds the major league record at 84.
Britton’s last blown save came on September 20, 2015, then converted two more saves before the end of the regular season. He went 47-for-47 in save chances last season and is six-for-six so far this year.
Along with his six saves, Britton has a 2.65 ERA and a 13/8 K/BB ratio in 17 innings this season. The lefty came off the disabled list earlier this month after missing two months with a strained left forearm.