Bobby Valentine rumored to be a finalist for Brewers manager

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Bobby Valentine may not end up with a managerial job at all this winter, but he’s darn sure going to be rumored for all of them.

Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com “keeps hearing” that Bobby V is a finalist to be the Brewers’ next manager.

Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported on Saturday that the Brewers were considering four candidates for the job, but he was only able to confirm former Diamondbacks and Mariners manager Bob Melvin and White Sox bench coach Joey Cora. So far, Brewers general manager Doug Melvin has tried to keep the whole process under wraps. Haudricourt guessed that Angels bench coach Ron Roenicke was the third candidate for the job, so perhaps Valentine is the fourth.

Milwaukee obviously presents a better chance of winning than Seattle, for example, at least in the short-term, but Rosenthal appears skeptical about whether the Brewers will be able to afford Valentine and/or if he would even be willing to accept the position. According to Jon Heyman of SI.com, Valentine enjoyed meeting with the Brewers’ people, but said that he didn’t expect to get the job.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.