Brian Gordon throwing

Report: Yankees sign right-hander Brian Gordon for Thursday start


Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that right-hander Brian Gordon has signed with the Yankees after opting out of his contract with the Phillies.

But that’s not all. Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer passes along word from Brookover that Gordon is expected to start Thursday against the Rangers.

Brian Gordon? Who’s Brian Gordon? Glad you asked.

Gordon, a converted outfielder, made three relief appearances with the Rangers back in 2008, but has otherwise spent 14-plus years in the minor leagues. After putting up respectable numbers over the past two seasons as a reliever, the 32-year-old right-hander had a 1.14 ERA and 56/7 K/BB ratio over his first nine starts and three relief appearances with Triple-A Lehigh Valley this season. He posted a stunning 31/1 K/BB ratio over 19 2/3 innings with the club this month.

While it sounds like the Yankees have settled on Gordon for Thursday, they have also considered David Phelps or Hector Noesi for the assignment.

MLB games were six minutes shorter this year

Pitch Clock
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According to STATS, INC., the average game in 2015 was 2 hours, 56 minutes. That’s six minutes faster than games in 2014.

The gains came in the first half, when games averaged 2:53. Second half games averaged three hours even. One can probably thank the expanded rosters in September for that, as games then see many more pitching changes. Of course, it’s likely that second half games were faster in 2015 than 2014 as well given the rules changes.

Those changes: agreement to enforce the rule requiring a hitter to keep at least one foot in the batter’s box and the installation of clocks timing pitching changes and between-inning breaks in ever ballpark.

It remains to be seen if MLB stays satisfied with that modest improvement or if chooses to go the way Triple-A and Double-A leagues did. They installed 20-second pitch clocks and started penalizing violators with balls and strikes. Triple-A’s two leagues, the International and Pacific Leagues, saw game-time decreases by 13 and 16 minutes, respectively.

Billy Beane promoted to VP, David Forst named A’s general manager

billy beane getty

I’m so old I remember when general managers used to run baseball operations departments. Now they’re basically assistants.

The latest example: the Oakland Athletics have promoted Billy Beane to vice president of baseball operations and have named David Forst general manager. Forst has been with the A’s for 16 years and has been Beane’s assistant for 12 years, so it’s not exactly a situation in which Forst will be making the final calls. The official move came today, though the move has been in the works for some time, it seems.

Someone with a lot of good front office access is going to write a good story this winter about the title inflation going on in Major League Baseball over the past year. And it’s gonna be great when one of his or her sources breaks the pattern of saying “well, baseball transactions are so much more complex these days . . . ” and admits “hey, if Theo gets a fancy title and La Russa gets a fancy title I WANT A FANCY TITLE TOO.”

Not that it’s much of a secret as it is.