Clearly this is a move borne of his personal disgrace over helping to assemble such a horrible te — oh, wait. It’s the Phillies. I still automatically think “Devil Rays” when I hear his name. But boy, this one is strange. “Shocking” according to Bob Brookover of the Inquirer:
LaMar did not return phone calls or text messages from the Inquirer Tuesday night, but during an extensive review of the 2011 minor-league season last week he gave zero indication that he was about to step down. Instead, the now former assistant general manager in charge of player development raved about the farm system’s vast talent and resources.
I got it: he gave that interview before learning that, contrary to his initial impression, the Phillies future was murky at best. That had to be it. It’s something that certainly rocked the foundations of many of you guys.
Or, rather, he realizes that leaving on top is not a bad thing at all, especially when there are other GM openings in places like Chicago. I mean, I haven’t heard his name mentioned as a potential Cubs GM — and at 55 he isn’t quite the model of a young, analytical type the Cubs are reported to be interested in hiring — but there are opportunities out there for LaMar out there.
Opportunities that he’s not going to get working behind a ninja. A ninja who is considerably younger than he is.
Thursday is September 1, which means rosters expand. As a result, the Nationals plan to promote pitcher Mat Latos to the major league roster, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. Latos had an opt-out clause for Monday, but after discussing the matter with the team, he agreed to stay at Triple-A Syracuse until Thursday.
Latos, 28, put up a 4.62 ERA over 11 starts with the White Sox before being released in mid-June. Nearly two weeks later, he signed a minor league contract with the Nationals.
In the Nationals’ minor league system, Latos has made three starts for the club’s Gulf Coast League team as well as three for Syracuse. In aggregate, the right-hander has yielded six runs (four earned) on 20 hits and 10 walks with 28 strikeouts in 28 innings.
Latos will likely pitch out of a long relief role for the Nationals and can be used as starting rotation insurance as well.
Mark Buehrle hasn’t officially retired, but he hasn’t thrown a pitch in professional baseball since last October. Still, the Blue Jays wouldn’t mind having some insurance, so manager John Gibbons recently texted Buehrle, “You know, rosters expand in September,” Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports.
Buehrle’s response? He texted back a picture of a lake. Sounds like he’s not interested in making a return, at least this year.
Last year, at the age of 36, Buehrle went 15-8 with a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio in 198 2/3 innings while leading the league with four complete games. He fell 1 1/3 innings shy of a 15th consecutive 200-inning season. There are many worse ways to end a career.