Mike Scioscia’s job is safe. Probably.

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I said on HBT Extra today that the Angels performance — poor, despite all of the new talent there this year — is the sort of thing that gets managers fired.  Which it is. Just not Mike Scioscia, says Arte Moreno.

Or at least he sorta says it. He was asked by Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com about Mike Scioscia’s status, and he said:

I signed Mike long-term, and I’m invested in Mike long-term … We try not to make impulsive decisions. … Let’s put it this way: Right now, that is not in our thought process.

In between the first part of that passage and the first ellipsis was a ramble about how things change and the team will make changes when needed.  Take from that what you will.  My take is that while that is something less than a full-throated vote of confidence,  Moreno hasn’t really thought about Mike Scioscia’s job status yet and is going to wait until the end of the season to do so.

Jon Gray will start Opening Day for the Rockies

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Manager Bud Black has tabbed Jon Gray to start on Opening Day for the Rockies. That will be Monday, April 3 in Milwaukee against the Brewers in an afternoon contest.

Gray, 25, is starting Opening Day for the first time in his career. He’ll be the sixth different Rockies pitcher to start Opening Day in as many years.

The Rockies and Gray had a bit of a scare on Friday as he left his spring training start with discomfort in his left foot, but everything came up clean in an MRI. He pitched again on Wednesday with no issue.

Last season, Gray went 10-10 with a 4.61 ERA and a 185/59 K/BB ratio in 168 innings. A consensus top prospect entering each of the previous three seasons, Gray surprisingly put up better numbers at Coors Field — the most hitter-friendly park in baseball — than away.

Blake Treinen named Nationals closer

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Today Washington Nationals manager Dusty Baker named Blake Treinen as his closer. Treinen has saved exactly one big league game.

There wasn’t necessarily an obvious choice, however. Last year Washington had Mark Melancon, but with him gone and GM Mike Rizzo’s failure to land a high-profile closer in the offseason, it became a contest between Treinen Shawn Kelley and Koda Glover.

Treinen posted a 2.28 ERA with 31 walks and 63 Ks in 67 innings in 2016. His big improvement last year came against lefties, who had tattooed him in the past. He pitched well this spring as well, but that doesn’t necessarily mean anything.

The Nats are our favorites to win the NL East, but we do have some questions about the pen. Blake Treinen will take the first crack at answering them.