When the Cardinals named Mark McGwire as their hitting coach last offseason it was first met with shock. Then criticism. Then questions. Then McGwire apologized, the season started and all of the media hype sort of just … went away.
Would we see the same reaction if Rafael Palmeiro was suddenly named the Orioles’ hitting coach? Or if a major league team hired Jose Canseco?
How about Barry Bonds?
The former Giants slugger told the Associated Press before Wednesday’s World Series Game 1 that he would love to enter the coaching side of the baseball world and that San Francisco would be an ideal place for his debut.
“I have a gift and sooner or later I have to give it away,” Bonds said. “I have to share it. Hopefully I’ll get the opportunity here.”
The post-PED baseball world is filled with a lot of unknowns. McGwire was embraced because he apologized — live, on MLB Network with Bob Costas — and because he opened himself to all questions when reporters came crawling during spring training. Can Bonds do that? He has battled the media since the early days of his playing career and he’s yet to hint at any sort of remorse for cheating the game back in the early 2000s.
Until he apologizes, and until he is able to handle a serious line of questioning, it’s highly doubtful that Bonds will be hired as an instructor anywhere.
This is happening, people.
Earlier we heard Joe Maddon being non-committal about Kyle Schwarber joining the Cubs for the World Series. Now it seems pretty clear that the Cubs are committal indeed: Jon Morosi reports that Schwarber is en route to Cleveland from Arizona on a private jet and that he’s expected to DH in Game 1 tomorrow night.
Schwarber hasn’t played in a game that counted since April 7. His potent bat is could be a windfall for a Cubs team that didn’t have a game-changing option at DH in the American League park.
Schwarber lost the whole season due to a knee injury, but he hit .246/.355/.487 with 16 homers and 43 RBI in 69 games as a rookie in 2015. His big coming out party was in the playoffs, however, when he hit three homers in five postseason games while going 7-for-13 with two walks in five games.
Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that Indians First Baseman/DH Carlos Santana shagged some flyballs in left field during the Indians’ workout today.
Sure, why not? Santana has played one game in the outfield in his major league career and that was over four years ago, but the Indians will have to play in Chicago without the DH, meaning either losing Santana’s bat or that of Mike Napoli.
It would be up to Terry Francona to decide if that happens, but ultimately I don’t think he’ll make it real and, rather, will just forget about it, because Santana’s defense out there would in no way be smooth.
I’m sorry. I’m sick today and I’m on a lot of cold medicine.