When the Diamondbacks traded top prospect Trevor Bauer to the Indians two offseasons ago in large part due to perceived attitude problems Arizona catcher Miguel Montero had some very harsh words:
When you get a guy like that and he thinks he’s got everything figured out, it’s just tough to commence and try to get on the same page with you … He never wanted to listen … Good luck to [Indians catcher] Carlos Santana.
Six months later the Diamondbacks are a mess and Bauer has a 4.35 ERA with 101 strikeouts in 108 innings for the Indians as a 23-year-old, including eight innings of two-run ball against Montero and company last night.
To his credit, after the Diamondbacks loss Montero took the high road when asked about Bauer, telling Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic:
That’s the best I’ve ever seen him. I hope he continues to do that. It was really impressive. I tip my hat. He did a great job. I’m honestly happy for him. I hope he’s figured it out because he has an opportunity to be a really good pitcher in the big leagues.
He’s a good guy. He has a different personality, but not everybody has the same personality. But once again, I’m happy to see the way he threw the ball today. If he throws the ball like that every five days, he’s got a pretty good future.
Piecoro notes that Montero and Bauer ran into each other before the game and “exchanged pleasantries.”
It was assumed already, but Mike Scioscia made it official during Monday’s press conference for new general manager Billy Eppler that he will return as Angels manager in 2016.
Scioscia, the longest-tenured manager in the majors, has been at the helm with the Angels since 2000. There was a clause in his contract which allowed him to opt out after the 2015 season, but he has decided to stay put. He still has three years and $15 million on his contract, which runs through 2018.
Jerry Dipoto resigned as Angels general manager in July amid tension with Scioscia, so there were naturally questions today about what to expect with first-time GM Eppler in the fold. According to David Adler of MLB.com, Scioscia isn’t concerned.
“I think we’re going to mesh very well,” Scioscia said. “If we adjust, or maybe he adjusts to some of the things, there’s going to be collaboration that’s going to make us better.”
Eppler is the fourth general manager during Scioscia’s tenure with the team.
After winning the AL West last season, the Angels finished 85-77 this season and narrowly missed the playoffs. The team hasn’t won a postseason game since 2009.
Astros center fielder Carlos Gomez sat out the final series of the regular season in order to rest a strained left intercostal muscle, but there was good news coming out of a workout today in advance of Tuesday’s Wild Card game vs. the Yankees.
This has been a lingering issue for Gomez, who missed 13 straight games with the injury last month. He aggravated the strain on a throw to home plate last Wednesday and was forced to sit while the Astros fought to keep their season alive. Astros manager A.J. Hinch told reporters last week that Gomez’s injury would typically take 45-50 days to recover from, so it’s fair to wonder how productive he can be during the postseason.
Gomez mostly struggled after coming over from the Brewers at the trade deadline, batting .242 with four home runs and a .670 OPS over 41 games.