I think we’re going to go with nothing but bench coach news until the game starts tonight. Ya with me? From Arizona:
Former Tigers manager Alan Trammell, who has been the Cubs bench coach the past four seasons, is said to be a leading candidate to become the bench coach.
Trammell had that one shot to manage in Detroit, but was never considered in Chicago where he was Lou Piniella’s bench coach. Which, after my “what do they do?” question, leads to my next bench coach question: is it a stepping-stone job or not? It’s certainly not for Trammell. It was for Don Mattingly. For the most part, though, the thinking is that third base coach is for line officers and pitching and bench coach are where your science officers live.
I’m actually starting to get fascinated by this. I want a 300 page bench coach book to be published by spring training. Someone get on this.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.