While Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com reported yesterday that White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper was pushing Terry Francona for the team’s managerial vacancy, it doesn’t sound like he’ll be joining the South Siders.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, Francona’s sudden availability has not changed the focus of the White Sox, as general manager Ken Williams continues to work off his original short list. David Kaplan of CSNChicago.com goes a bit further, writing the White Sox “have no interest” in hiring Francona.
The identities of the names on the White Sox short list aren’t known, but Indians bench coach Sandy Alomar Jr. and Rays bench coach Dave Martinez are believed to be among them. As first time managers, they would likely make a fraction of what two-time World Series champion Francona would command in annual salary.
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.
Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.
The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.