MLBPA head Michael Weiner being treated for a brain tumor

6 Comments

Awful news from a press release from the players’ union today:

The Major League Baseball Players Association today announced that Executive Director Michael Weiner began treatment for a brain tumor on Monday, August 20. Michael’s treatments are expected to last about one month, and it is anticipated that he will continue to work out of the Union’s New York office on a daily basis during this time.

Michael would like to thank in advance all those who join the Union staff and player membership in wishing him well as he undergoes his treatment, and he looks forward to making a full recovery.

Best wishes to a good man for a full recovery.

UPDATE: Bud Selig has issued a statement:

“On behalf of Major League Baseball and the 30 Major League Clubs, I send my best wishes to Michael Weiner and his family.  I have great respect and admiration for Michael, with whom we have had a very constructive relationship both professionally and personally.  This relationship has been a great benefit to Baseball and has led to the tremendous success the game now enjoys.  All of us look forward to Michael’s full recovery and to his continued contributions to our game.”

Yankees to hire Josh Bard as their new bench coach

Getty Images
Leave a comment

Aaron Boone has no experience as a coach or a manager at any level. As such, some have speculated that he’d hire a more seasoned hand as his bench coach as he begins his first season as Yankees manager. Someone like, say, Eric Wedge, who was a candidate for the job Boone got and who once managed Boone in Cleveland.

Nope. According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, he’s going with Josh Bard.

Bard, 39, was a teammate of Boone’s with the Indians in 2005. He’s not without coaching experience, having spent the last two seasons as the Dodgers’ bullpen coach, but he’s not that Gene Lamont/Don Zimmer-type we often see in the bench coach role.

Which is fine because different managers want different things from their bench coach. Some are strategy guys, helping with in-game decision making. Others are relationship guys who help managers understand all of the dynamics of the clubhouse while they’re worrying more about lineups and stuff. Others are trust guys, who can serve as the manager’s sounding board, among other things. Some are combinations of all of these things. As Feinsand notes in his story, Boone said at his introductory press conference that he’s looking for this:

“I want smart sitting next to me. I want confidence sitting next to me. I want a guy who can walk out into that room and as I talk about relationships I expect to have with my players, I expect that even to be more so with my coaching staff. Whether that is a guy with all kinds of experience or little experience. I am not concerned about that.”