According to Nick Piecoro of Arizona Republic, former major league pitcher Charles Nagy “has emerged as the leading candidate” to be the Diamondbacks’ pitching coach.
Nagy pitched 14 seasons in the major leagues, 13 of them with the Indians, but spent the final year of his career with the Padres in 2003. The general manager of that team? New Diamondbacks’ GM Kevin Towers.
Nagy served as the pitching coach with Triple-A Columbus in the Indians’ organization this past season. He was the pitching coach with Triple-A Salt Lake in the Angels’ organization from 2006-07.
Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reported on Sunday that former Athletics pitching coach Curt Young was likely headed to Arizona, but if Piecoro can be believed, it doesn’t look like that is going to happen. FYI: The Red Sox and Yankees are among the teams in the market for a new pitching coach.
In other news, Steve Gilbert of MLB.com reports that former Tigers manager Alan Trammell will be named as D-Backs’ bench coach. Trammel most recently served as Cubs’ bench coach from 2006-10, but wasn’t considered for the managerial job. The interesting part about this hire is that Gibson was Trammell’s bench coach in Detroit.
The Athletics followed Friday’s 3-0 shutout with a rookie-led home run derby on Saturday afternoon, watching not one, not two, but three rookies belt their first major league home runs off of the White Sox’ James Shields.
Right fielder Matt Olson was the first to strike, taking Shields deep on a first-pitch, two-run blast in the first inning for his first home run in 49 major league plate appearances:
Fellow outfielder Jaycob Brugman duplicated his teammate’s results in the second inning with a solo home run, his first extra-base hit of any kind since he made his debut on June 9:
In the third, with a comfortable 4-0 lead backing two scoreless frames from Oakland right-hander Daniel Gossett, Franklin Barreto took his shot at Shields. After getting the call several hours prior to Saturday’s game, he became the fastest of the three rookies to record his first big league homer, going yard on a 2-2 changeup and driving in Bruce Maxwell to give the A’s a six-run advantage.
The Athletics currently lead the White Sox 8-2 in the top of the sixth inning.
The Athletics called up their top prospect on Saturday, inserting shortstop Franklin Barreto into the lineup for their second game against the White Sox. Barreto was originally scheduled to make his major league debut on Sunday, but got a head start after Jed Lowrie sustained a minor knee sprain in Friday’s 3-0 win and was scratched from Saturday’s lineup.
Barreto, 21, has been rapidly climbing the rungs of the A’s minor league system after getting dealt by the Blue Jays in 2014. He got his first taste of Triple-A action late last year, going 6-for-17 with three RBI and getting caught stealing in two attempts. He fared little better this spring, slashing .281/.326/.428 with eight home runs and a .754 OPS through his first 309 PA in Nashville.
While his minor league production has been solid, if underwhelming for a prospect of his caliber, the A’s are expected to give the rookie infielder a long leash with both Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder sitting on the disabled list. Pinder landed on the 10-day DL after suffering a left hamstring strain on Friday. Semien, meanwhile, is still working his way back from the 60-day DL with a right wrist fracture and likely won’t rejoin the team until he completes a rehab assignment with High-A Stockton.