Michael Bourn might remain with the Astros

1 Comment

Astros center fielder Michael Bourn has posted a cool .303/.363/.403 batting line this season while tallying 39 stolen bases in 46 tries. He’d make an excellent leadoff hitter on a number of contending teams. But the interest simply isn’t there.

According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, “there is little momentum” right now for a Bourn trade.

The Nationals had interest, but they currently remain focused on landing Denard Span from the Twins. The Indians were also known to be intrigued by Bourn, but that was before they unloaded a couple of their top pitching prospects for Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez. Perhaps the Giants or Braves will step forward with a last-minute offer. As Rosenthal notes, news on deadline day is often fluid.

Bourn, 28, is earning $4.4 million this year via arbitration and is under team control in 2012.

Yankees to hire Josh Bard as their new bench coach

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Aaron Boone has no experience as a coach or a manager at any level. As such, some have speculated that he’d hire a more seasoned hand as his bench coach as he begins his first season as Yankees manager. Someone like, say, Eric Wedge, who was a candidate for the job Boone got and who once managed Boone in Cleveland.

Nope. According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, he’s going with Josh Bard.

Bard, 39, was a teammate of Boone’s with the Indians in 2005. He’s not without coaching experience, having spent the last two seasons as the Dodgers’ bullpen coach, but he’s not that Gene Lamont/Don Zimmer-type we often see in the bench coach role.

Which is fine because different managers want different things from their bench coach. Some are strategy guys, helping with in-game decision making. Others are relationship guys who help managers understand all of the dynamics of the clubhouse while they’re worrying more about lineups and stuff. Others are trust guys, who can serve as the manager’s sounding board, among other things. Some are combinations of all of these things. As Feinsand notes in his story, Boone said at his introductory press conference that he’s looking for this:

“I want smart sitting next to me. I want confidence sitting next to me. I want a guy who can walk out into that room and as I talk about relationships I expect to have with my players, I expect that even to be more so with my coaching staff. Whether that is a guy with all kinds of experience or little experience. I am not concerned about that.”