This, from the Miami Herald, is not terribly surprising:
The Marlins, under orders from owner Jeffrey Loria, are making sweeping changes to the team’s baseball operations, from player development and scouting, all the way up to the front office.
Whether any of those changes involve [Manager Dan] Jennings, who stepped aside as general manager to assume the manager’s job in May after Mike Redmond was fired, remains to be seen.
Jennings will no doubt be gone. He has been no better than Mike Redmond and, I presume anyway, even he would tell you he’s not the best long-term guy to run the team on the field.
The rest of it just makes me roll my eyes. The Marlins have had a lot of problems over the years, but they’ve actually done a good job developing talent. At least top-end talent like Giancarlo Stanton and Jose Fernandez. Christian Yellich is a nice player any number of teams would like to have come up with. Injuries hurt them a lot this year and last and they haven’t built the sort of depth a team with top star power needs to complement it, but despite payroll limitations and the lack of a desire for a lot of guys to go to Miami, they’ve built an at least credible core.
Loria is a clear problem, dictating roster moves and coaching shakeups from his owner’s box. And perhaps Jennings, who was the GM tasked with putting complementary pieces around Stanton and didn’t do the greatest job around. Jennings will maybe go, but maybe not. Loria is going nowhere of course.
But based on this story, it sounds like they’re going to can a bunch of scouts and cross checkers who, for the most part, have done a fine job for the Marlins over the past few years. Which would be a shame.
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.