Steve Soboroff sent a letter of resignation to Dodgers owner Frank McCourt on Saturday barely more than two months after accepting a job as the club’s vice chairman.
The letter, published by the Los Angeles Times, states:
I accepted the position as Vice Chairman of the Los Angeles Dodgers because I love Los Angeles and I love the Dodgers. I felt I could use my previous experience during the past 30+ years with civic and public policy projects like Staples Center, the city’s Recreation and Parks system, Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles, etc., etc. to help the Dodger organization and to help Los Angeles.
On the day my appointment was announced, last April, I received hundreds of messages of support from people throughout Los Angeles. It was a great start!
Unfortunately, the very next day, an unanticipated action by the Commissioner of Major League Baseball resulted (understandably) in elevating the resolution of ‘control and ownership’ issues to top priority, which remains to this day. As a consequence, it is not possible for me to effectively work on the very initiatives and contributions that you had hired me to implement.
My family and I have reflected on this turn of events and have determined that the present environment is not conductive to getting the results I was brought on to achieve for the Dodger organization or for Los Angeles
As a result, I am tendering my resignation as Vice Chairman of the Los Angeles Dodgers, effective immediately.
I remain a lifelong Dodger fan and will now embark on a different path to continue my longstanding efforts to make good things happen in Los Angeles.
Soboroff ran for Mayor of L.A. in 2001. If he can help get McCourt ousted — which would certainly qualify as a good thing — maybe another bid is in the offing.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.