I wrote this morning about Ricky Romero pointing to a lack of run support after last night’s loss dropped him to 6-7 despite a 2.98 ERA and this afternoon Romero tweeted that he wasn’t calling out the Blue Jays’ lineup:
Wanna clear up that I did NOT call out any of my teammates. Never been that guy. I go about my business and that’s it. I respect everyone on my team. And my team knows what I’m all about. Some people try and make something outta nothing. My team is my Family.
I guess I’m “some people” in that scenario and Romero’s postgame quotes certainly didn’t qualify as harsh criticism or fighting words, but at the very least he was clearly letting off some steam about repeatedly taking tough losses. Longtime columnist Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star wrote about Romero’s comments under the headline: “Frustrated Ricky Romero speaks out on Jays’ lack of offence.”
Romero is absolutely right about the lack of run support he’s received, but he’s wrong about Toronto’s lineup struggling in general and has now learned the hard way that there’s really nothing to gain by pointing out teammates’ struggles whether you intended to “call them out” or simply discuss facts. Sad but true.
Free agent right-hander Tim Lincecum isn’t ready to hang up his cleats just yet. At least, that’s the word from Lincecum’s agent, Rick Thurman, who says the 32-year-old is still “throwing and getting ready for the season” (via Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News).
Lincecum may not be ready to enter retirement, but another quote from Thurman suggests that he’ll be picky about where he pitches next. He doesn’t appear open to pitching overseas, and despite not having a contract for 2017 (or even any serious suitors), the right-hander is set on pitching in the big leagues this year. Whether or not he’s willing to take a bullpen role to do so remains to be seen.
While Baggarly predicts some interest in the veteran righty, there’s not much in Lincecum’s recent history to inspire faith in him as a starter, or even a reliever. He picked up a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Angels following his hip surgery in 2015, and went 2-6 in 2016 with a 9.16 ERA, 5.4 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 over 38 1/3 innings. At this point, a minor league contract seems like the surest path back to major league success, though he’s unlikely to find an open spot on the Giants’ or Angels’ rosters anytime soon.
Free agent right-hander Jeff Manship has reportedly signed with the NC Dinos of the Korea Baseball Organization, according to FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman. The righty was non-tendered by the Indians in December.
Manship, 32, completed his second season with Cleveland in 2016. He delivered a 3.12 ERA, 4.6 BB/9 and 7.5 SO/9 rate over 43 1/3 innings, a slight decline after posting an 0.92 ERA with the club the year before. During eight years in the major leagues, Manship carries a 4.82 career ERA, 3.6 BB/9 and 6.4 SO/9 in multiple stints with the Twins, Rockies, Phillies and Indians.
The right-hander will be joined by fellow MLB transplants Eric Hacker and Xavier Scruggs, each of whom took one-year deals with the Dinos last month. Steve Adams of MLB Trade Rumors notes that each KBO team is allowed up to three foreign players, so Manship will round out the trio when he joins the roster. Any salary terms have yet to be disclosed.