The Red Sox hire Chili Davis as a minor league hitting coach; fundamentally shift the balance of power in the AL East

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The Red Sox hired Chili Davis to be the hitting coach for the AAA Pawsox today. That’s swell. Nice guy. Good hitter. But probably not worth this tweet from Heyman:

red sox announce hiring of chili davis as pawsox hitting coach. 1 of best/smartest guys in game. yankees still hibernating.

You know, there’s a lot to be desired about the Yankees’ offseason, but I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that the identity of a team’s minor league hitting coach has had absolutely no bearing on any major league pennant race in the history of forever nor will it even if they’re still playing baseball in the year 2525. I think it’s OK to give the Yankees a pass here for “hibernating.”

Indeed, the notion that anything the Red Sox do that the Yankees don’t immediately counter represents some sort of victory in a never-ending war is one of the more tiresome memes in all of baseball.

It reminds me of this.

Ian Kinsler lists the five toughest pitchers in the AL Central

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Every now and then, The Players’ Tribune runs a “five toughest” feature. In 2015, David Ortiz listed the five toughest pitchers he ever faced. Last month, Christian Yelich wrote up the five toughest pitchers in the NL East. Now, it’s Ian Kinsler‘s turn with the five toughest pitchers in the AL Central.

Kinsler goes into detail explaining why each pitcher is difficult to face, so hop over to The Players’ Tribune for his reasoning. His list

Presumably, Kinsler intentionally omitted his Tiger teammates from the list. He has faced Justin Verlander a fair amount earlier in his career, and he has only a .176/.333/.235 batting line in 42 plate appearances against the right-hander. Verlander’s stuff is often described as tough to hit in one phrase or another. Kinsler has also struggled against Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (.590 OPS), but one can understand why he would be omitted from a list of five given who was already listed.

Angels demote C.J. Cron to Triple-A

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Angels first baseman C.J. Cron hit a grand slam against the Mets on Sunday, but it wasn’t enough to keep his spot on the major league roster as the club announced his demotion to Triple-A Salt Lake on Monday. Infielder Nolan Fantana has been promoted from Salt Lake.

Cron, 27, was hitting a disappointing .232/.281/.305 with one home run and RBI in 90 plate appearances. I guess you can say that wasn’t the kind of Cron job the Angels were expecting. Cron was an above-average hitter in each of his first three seasons, finishing with an OPS+, or adjusted OPS, of 111, 106, and 115 (100 is average).

While Cron is figuring things out in the minors, Luis Valbuena, Jefry Marte, and Albert Pujols could each see some time at first base.