Jack McKeon

Marlins manager Jack McKeon announces retirement

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Jack McKeon’s return to managing at age 80 didn’t go quite as well as hoped, and he announced Monday that he’ll retire after Wednesday’s Marlins season finale.

McKeon is 39-48 since taking over the job in June, giving him a very similar record to the man he replaced.  The Marlins were 32-39 under Edwin Rodriguez and 0-1 in Brandon Hyde’s one game as interim manager.

No one was really expecting McKeon to remain the Marlins’ manager when they opened their new stadium in 2012, but the ride in his three-plus months at the helm has been bumpier than the team would have liked.  Not always pleased with his team’s effort, he was most vocal last month, saying, among other things, that “some of these guys had better wake up.”

It’s safe to assume that McKeon, who hadn’t managed since 2005 before joining the Marlins this year, is done for good this time.  With three games left to go, his record stands at 1,050-988.  He managed the Marlins to a World Series victory as a 72-year-old in 2003 and also won 96 games with the Reds back in 1999.

Stephen Strasburg unlikely to pitch in the NLDS

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 07:  Stephen Strasburg #37 of the Washington Nationals walks off the field after an injury in the third inning against the Atlanta Braves at Nationals Park on September 7, 2016 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)
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Nationals GM Mike Rizzo said on Tuesday that starter Stephen Strasburg is unlikely to pitch in the NLDS against the Dodgers, Chase Hughes of CSN Mid-Atlantic reports. Strasburg hasn’t pitched since September 7 due to a strained flexor mass.

Strasburg was pitching well before a few poor starts prior to being shut down in August. He currently holds a 3.60 ERA with a 183/44 K/BB ratio in 147 2/3 innings.

The Nationals signed Strasburg to a seven-year, $175 million contract extension in May. This was obviously not how they invisioned his 2016 campaign going.

A.J. Cole fined, suspended five games for throwing at Jung Ho Kang

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Home plate umpire Jordan Baker ejects A.J. Cole #22 of the Washington Nationals in the third inning during the game at PNC Park on September 25, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
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Nationals starter A.J. Cole has been fined an undisclosed amount and suspended five games by Major League Baseball for intentionally throwing at Pirates third baseman Jung Ho Kang on Sunday, Chelsea Janes of The Washington Post reports. Cole is appealing his suspension.

Kang faked a tag on Bryce Harper, who was coming into third base on a triple. The fake-out caused Harper to slide awkwardly, injuring his left thumb. The Nationals took exception to this and Cole threw a fastball that ended sailing behind Kang’s back during his next at-bat. Cole was ejected and both benches emptied. There was some yelling and some light pushing and shoving, but nothing beyond that.

Cole will remain active until his appeal is heard, which may allow him to make one more start before the end of the regular season. He’s carrying a 5.09 ERA with a 37/14 K/BB ratio in 35 1/3 innings over seven starts this season.