Mat Latos will begin the season on the disabled list

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According to Dan Hayes of the North County Times, Padres general manager Jed Hoyer has confirmed that Mat Latos will begin the season on the disabled list.

Latos, who has a 9.00 ERA and 5/9 K/BB ratio over 10 innings this spring, was scratched from his scheduled start on Saturday due to an inflamed bursa sac in his throwing shoulder. The young right-hander still felt some pain after doing some rehab work on Friday, but said this morning that he felt fine over the past two days.

There’s reason for concern anytime you start talking about a pitcher’s shoulder, but it’s worth noting that the Padres can go with four starters until April 11. Can’t blame the Padres for being cautious here. Hayes writes that the Padres are confident that Latos “has turned a corner” and that he’s still still scheduled to throw Tuesday, so it’s possible that he’s not that far away.

Yankees to hire Josh Bard as their new bench coach

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Aaron Boone has no experience as a coach or a manager at any level. As such, some have speculated that he’d hire a more seasoned hand as his bench coach as he begins his first season as Yankees manager. Someone like, say, Eric Wedge, who was a candidate for the job Boone got and who once managed Boone in Cleveland.

Nope. According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, he’s going with Josh Bard.

Bard, 39, was a teammate of Boone’s with the Indians in 2005. He’s not without coaching experience, having spent the last two seasons as the Dodgers’ bullpen coach, but he’s not that Gene Lamont/Don Zimmer-type we often see in the bench coach role.

Which is fine because different managers want different things from their bench coach. Some are strategy guys, helping with in-game decision making. Others are relationship guys who help managers understand all of the dynamics of the clubhouse while they’re worrying more about lineups and stuff. Others are trust guys, who can serve as the manager’s sounding board, among other things. Some are combinations of all of these things. As Feinsand notes in his story, Boone said at his introductory press conference that he’s looking for this:

“I want smart sitting next to me. I want confidence sitting next to me. I want a guy who can walk out into that room and as I talk about relationships I expect to have with my players, I expect that even to be more so with my coaching staff. Whether that is a guy with all kinds of experience or little experience. I am not concerned about that.”