Bobby Valentine’s combative comments Wednesday afternoon on Boston sports radio station WEEI did not go unnoticed in the Red Sox front office.
According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, Red Sox GM Ben Cherington had a “brief discussion” with Valentine before Wednesday night’s game against the Mariners. Cherington didn’t describe to Cafardo what was said in the chat, but we’d venture to guess it was the opposite of a pat on the back.
“If I were there right now, I’d punch you right in the mouth,” Bobby V told Glenn Ordway, host of “The Big Show,” earlier today.
The threat was made in a joking manner, and Ordway had just asked Valentine if he was “checked out” for the rest of the season, but baseball teams typically don’t like their managers spouting off on the airwaves.
This is all adds to the growing assumption that Bobby V will be canned sometime near the end of the year.
We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.
McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.
Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.
The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.
Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.
Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.