Today on Real Managers of the National League, Bruce fires back after Clint and Jack get all up in his grill!
Jack McKeon and Clint Hurdle, who manage the Marlins and Pirates, respectively, criticized Bruce Bochy for snubbing players on their teams. On Tuesday, Bochy fired back, saying many managers phoned him before the picks were made to lobby for certain players, but McKeon and Hurdle did not.
“What bothers me are some of the comments made by other managers,” Bochy said. “Now you’re getting personal, disparaging other players. That’s not what this game is about. The two that complained, I’ve known them for over 25 years and didn’t hear from them. That bothered me.”
At this point, if baseball truly were a reality show, another manager — say, Don Mattingly — would go to the little confession room or whatever they call it and say “I guess what Bruce just doesn’t understand is that Clint and Jack were just trying to stick up for their own guys. Which is something Bruce would probably do if the situation were reversed.”
I’d like to think that Mattingly would then offer some version of “Oh no he din’t!” but that’s probably asking too much.
A report from the Baltimore Sun’s Dan Connolly suggests that free agent catcher Welington Castillo currently tops the Orioles’ list of potential backstop targets for the 2017 season. With Matt Wieters on the market, the Orioles lack a suitable platoon partner for Caleb Joseph behind the dish, and Connolly adds that the club has been discussing a multi-year deal with Castillo’s representatives since the Winter Meetings.
Castillo batted .264/.322/.423 with the Diamondbacks in 2016, racking up 14 home runs and driving in a career-high 68 RBI in 457 PA. His bat provides much of his upside, and Connolly quoted an anonymous National League scout who believes that the 29-year-old’s defensive profile has fallen short of his potential in recent years.
For better or worse, both the Orioles and Castillo appear far from locking in a deal for 2017. Both the Rays and Braves have expressed interest in the veteran catcher during the past week, while the Orioles are reportedly considering Wieters, Nick Hundley and Chris Iannetta as alternatives behind the plate.
The Phillies reportedly signed veteran outfielder Daniel Nava to a minor league contract, according to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Nava began the season on a one-year contract with the Angels, during which he slashed .235/.309/.303 through 136 PA in the first half of 2016. He was flipped to the Royals in late August for a player to be named later and saw the remainder of his year go down the drain on an .091 average through 12 PA in Anaheim. After getting the boot from the Angels’ 40-man roster in November, the 33-year-old outfielder elected free agency.
Nava is expected to compete for a bench role on the Phillies’ roster in the spring. As it currently stands, the club’s projected 2017 outfield features Howie Kendrick and Odubel Herrera, with precious little depth behind them. Nava’s bat is underwhelming, but at the very least he offers the Phillies a warm body in left field and a potential platoon partner for one of their younger options, a la Tyler Goeddel or Roman Quinn.