Yoan Moncada isn’t abandoning his post at second base anytime soon, but comments from White Sox GM Rick Hahn on Saturday indicated that a switch to the outfield might not be out of the question:
Echoing Hahn’s comments, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reported that the team is “100 percent committed to keeping Yoan Moncada at second base,” per an anonymous team source. The 21-year-old isn’t a stranger to switching things up on the field, and was stationed at third base with the Red Sox for a short-lived stint in the majors last season. In a best-case scenario, he might do for the White Sox what Mookie Betts did for the Red Sox after successfully making the shift to center field in 2014, though Moncada has no proven experience (in the major leagues or otherwise) in the outfield to date.
No matter where he ends up, however, the White Sox appear to be taking things slowly with their prized prospect. Per Cafardo’s report, he’ll begin the year in Triple-A Columbus and work on refining his defensive skills before the club permits another jump to the big leagues.
At the end of January, the Nationals signed relievers Joe Nathan and Matt Albers. Today the Nationals have released Joe Nathan and Matt Albers.
Nathan, 42, pitched in just ten games last year, totaling only six and a third innings, between the Giants and the Cubs. He missed the entire 2015 season except for one third of an inning on Opening Day. Albers pitched in 58 games for the White Sox last year, posting an unsightly 6.31 ERA He pitched wonderfully in 30 games in 2015 however.
This spring Nathan and Albers pitched in more games than any other Nats relievers. Twelve for Nathan, ten for Albers. And they pitched well, with Nathan giving up five earned runs and Albers none. Apparently, however, there just isn’t room on the roster for those two.
This could be the end of the line for Nathan, a 16-year veteran with 377 career saves.
The substance of the report is not shocking. Francisco Lindor is one of baseball’s brightest young stars and the Cleveland Indians would, no doubt, wish to lock him up for an extended period of time. The surprising part is the guy who reported that, yes, the Indians are working to get Lindor a seven-year extension.
That guy: six-year-old Brody Chernoff, son of Indians general manager Mike Chernoff. Brody was invited into the team’s broadcast booth during the ninth inning of their game against the Chicago White Sox. Indians announcer Tom Hamilton asked, no doubt jokingly, if his working on anything interesting. Brody:
“He’s trying to get, um, Lindor to play for seven more years,”
Again, not shocking. It would’ve been way worse if Brody had said “Dad’s working on a three-way deal that’ll send Naquin to an NL team in order to affect a three-way trade that’ll land us Verlander without having to deal directly with a divisional rival.” But I imagine Dad still would’ve preferred he not mention that.