Skip Schumaker started two games at second base in the Cardinals’ NLDS defeat of the Phillies, going 6-for-10 in that five-game series.
But Schumaker missed the NLCS due to an oblique strain and is on the bench for Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday night in St. Louis.
According to beat writer Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Cardinals manager Tony La Russa told the media on Wednesday at Busch Stadium that Schumaker is being viewed as more of a fourth outfielder than a second baseman in this seven-game Fall Classic against the Rangers.
He’ll fill the role left vacant by Adron Chambers, who was left off the Cardinals’ World Series roster.
Nick Punto is St. Louis’ best defensive option at second base. And if La Russa wants to switch things up, he’s likely to try Ryan Theriot next. Schumaker, despite his quick recovery, will strictly be a bench guy.
Of course, La Russa could always change his mind mid-series, rendering this entire post moot.
At the end of January, the Nationals signed relievers Joe Nathan and Matt Albers. Today the Nationals have released Joe Nathan and Matt Albers.
Nathan, 42, pitched in just ten games last year, totaling only six and a third innings, between the Giants and the Cubs. He missed the entire 2015 season except for one third of an inning on Opening Day. Albers pitched in 58 games for the White Sox last year, posting an unsightly 6.31 ERA He pitched wonderfully in 30 games in 2015 however.
This spring Nathan and Albers pitched in more games than any other Nats relievers. Twelve for Nathan, ten for Albers. And they pitched well, with Nathan giving up five earned runs and Albers none. Apparently, however, there just isn’t room on the roster for those two.
This could be the end of the line for Nathan, a 16-year veteran with 377 career saves.
The substance of the report is not shocking. Francisco Lindor is one of baseball’s brightest young stars and the Cleveland Indians would, no doubt, wish to lock him up for an extended period of time. The surprising part is the guy who reported that, yes, the Indians are working to get Lindor a seven-year extension.
That guy: six-year-old Brody Chernoff, son of Indians general manager Mike Chernoff. Brody was invited into the team’s broadcast booth during the ninth inning of their game against the Chicago White Sox. Indians announcer Tom Hamilton asked, no doubt jokingly, if his working on anything interesting. Brody:
“He’s trying to get, um, Lindor to play for seven more years,”
Again, not shocking. It would’ve been way worse if Brody had said “Dad’s working on a three-way deal that’ll send Naquin to an NL team in order to affect a three-way trade that’ll land us Verlander without having to deal directly with a divisional rival.” But I imagine Dad still would’ve preferred he not mention that.