Ryne Sandberg may not be an option to replace Mike Quade as Cubs manager, but Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Cardinals have asked the Phillies for permission to interview Sandberg as a potential Tony La Russa replacement.
Sandberg managed at Triple-A in the Phillies’ system this season and according to Rosenthal they’ll grant the Cubs permission.
Sandberg was passed over for the Cubs’ opening when then-general manager Jim Hendry decided to give Quade the full-time job and new team president Theo Epstein said today that Quade’s replacement must have significant big-league coaching experience, which seemingly rules out the Hall of Fame second baseman.
Chicago passing on Sandberg multiple times is plenty interesting, but his ending up in St. Louis would crank up the drama even further.
The story of the Indians postseason cannot be told without talking about injuries to starting pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar. They have forced Terry Francona to lean even harder on his bullpen than he otherwise may have and have cause the Indians to press rookie Ryan Merritt into service.
But Cleveland will be getting at least one of their starters back: Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway that Danny Salazar will be part of the World Series roster.
Salazar has not pitched since early September due to a strained right flexor muscle, but according to Callaway, Salazar is ready to throw 65-70 pitches in a game. That could mean a start, probably in Game 4 after Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin. Merritt was a possible Game 4 starter, but he could either pair up with Salazar in a tandem start or serve in long relief.
Cubs’ left fielder Kyle Schwarber missed virtually the entire 2016 season due to torn knee ligaments, but he has been working his way back to health more quickly than initially expected. Indeed, he has been playing for the Cubs in the Arizona Fall League, serving as a DH. Many have speculated that the Cubs will activate him for the World Series.
Today, at his World Series media session, Cubs manager Joe Maddon said that reports from Arizona are good on Schwarber and that the he will fly to Cleveland to join the team after tonight’s game in Arizona. Maddon says the team will make a decision on activating him once he arrives. The Cubs have until tomorrow morning to set their World Series roster.
Our guess is that Schwarber will get the call and will serve as the DH for the Cubs in Games 1, 2 and, if necessary, 6 and 7 in Cleveland. If so, a lost season could very quickly turn into a storybook season for the Cubs’ young slugger.