Two random items on a slow news day (non-Mike Leake theft division):
First, Jon Heyman writes that, in the offseason, Alex Rodriguez “begged the Yankees” to re-sign Melky Cabrera. Seems that Melky worked out with A-Rod in the offseason and was convinced that he’d be great.
I’ve seen Melky play a couple of times this year. He does look like he’s in better shape than he was last year for Atlanta. However, he looks like the same Melky we’ve always known at the plate: 70 plate appearances. One walk. Attention A-Rod: please come to the park and hit the snot out of the ball and leave the scouting to the scouting department.
Second, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com notes that with Asdrubal Cabrera playing shortstop for the Indians, Orlando Cabrera playing second and Melky Cabrera playing for the Royals, “we have a realistic shot at a groundout that goes Cabrera to Cabrera to Cabrera.”
I can’t think of anything that would make me happier.
Setting their rotation for the beginning of the ALDS versus the Blue Jays, the Rangers announced that right-hander Yovani Gallardo will start Game 1 and left-hander Cole Hamels will start Game 2.
Gallardo posted a 3.42 ERA in 33 starts this season, but averaged just 5.6 innings per start and hasn’t completed six or more innings in a start since mid-August. Clearly the Rangers will be hoping for five or six innings from him before turning it over to the bullpen.
Hamels, on the other hand, averaged seven innings in his 12 post-trade starts for the Rangers, including tossing a complete-game against the Angels in the regular season finale. He’s obviously the Rangers’ best starting pitcher, but because Hamels was needed to clinch the division title in Game 162 he’s not available to start Game 1 of the playoffs.
In the seemingly never-ending trend of front office officials getting new titles, the Cleveland Indians just announced that General Manager Chris Antonetti has been promoted to President of Baseball Operations and Mike Chernoff is now the GM.
Antonetti has been the Tribe’s GM for the past five years and is moving up in the wake of team president Mark Shapiro moving on to Toronto. Shapiro, however, also held business side responsibilities which Antonetti will not assume. Meaning, as before, he will be the top guy on baseball ops decisions, albeit with a grander title.
Chernoff has been an assistant GM for five years and has been with the organization for the past 12 years. As many new GMs these days he will, functionally speaking, still be an assistant when it comes to baseball decisions.