Jim Tracy is in the best shape of his life

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Well, maybe of his managerial life. Because, it seems, that his collapse at the Winter Meetings that threw a scare into everyone wasn’t the first time that’s happened to him.  According to Jannie McCauley of the Associated Press, Tracy has been having issues with dizziness and fatigue for several years, and the fainting down in Florida was merely the capper to it all.  However, he’s feeling much better now:

After his December episode, Denver cardiologist Dr. Barry Molk decided to drastically decrease Tracy’s meds – and it turned out to be the right move. He has more energy than he has in some time. He no longer is on the diuretic.

“I’m doing better than I was doing physically at any point during the course of the 2010 season,” Tracy said in a phone interview. “I just didn’t need as much medicine. And I needed that little tap on the shoulder from upstairs that I needed to go in for a little tuneup.”

I think the scariest part of all of this are Tracy’s comments that he kept his health issues — including several previous fainting spells and high blood pressure — secret because he “didn’t want them to think I was losing my edge.” With the “them” clearly meaning his bosses in Los Angeles, Pittsburgh and Colorado. Which, on some level I understand. But man, we only get one life. If you have a job where attention to your health is a weakness, find something else to do.

Glad to hear that Tracy has changed his mind about all of that. Even more glad that he’s gotten on a program that helps him out and has him feeling better.  And while one’s health isn’t anyone else’s business,* I’m glad Tracy has gone public with this, because there’s no doubt others in and around baseball who are hiding their own health problems who may decide to take better care of themselves in light of Tracy’s example.

That is, unless you’ve been dead for 70 years and your family doesn’t object.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.