Greg Colbrunn, who spent time away from the Red Sox in June and July after being hospitalized for a brain hemorrhage, has “has elected not to return” as hitting coach for 2015.
Colbrunn indicated that he wants to spend more time with his family and no doubt the serious health scare–and the six-week absence from the team that followed–made the 45-year-old reconsider a lot of things.
Last season Boston led the majors in scoring, but this year the offense dropped to 11th in the American League.
Orioles first baseman Steve Pearce thought he hit a homer off Tigers right-hander Max Scherzer, so he took his time trotting to first base. Except it wasn’t a homer, and when the ball bounced off the wall Tigers left fielder J.D. Martinez threw him out at second base.
Not a great slide, either.
Orioles designated hitter Nelson Cruz, who led the American League with 40 homers, kicked off the scoring in Game 1 of the ALDS with a two-run homer off Tigers right-hander Max Scherzer.
This is the 35th playoff game of Cruz’s career and he’s hit 15 homers with a .709 slugging percentage.
Detroit tied things up the next half-inning with a pair of solo homers from Victor Martinez and J.D. Martinez.
Here are the lineups for Game 1 of the Royals-Angels series in Anaheim:
SS Alcides Escobar
RF Norichika Aoki
CF Lorenzo Cain
1B Eric Hosmer
DH Billy Butler
LF Alex Gordon
C Salvador Perez
2B Omar Infante
3B Mike Moustakas
SP Jason Vargas
Exact same lineup the Royals used in the Wild Card Game, even though they were facing a left-hander then and are facing a right-hander tonight. It’s the standard batting order they went with down the stretch.
RF Kole Calhoun
CF Mike Trout
1B Albert Pujols
2B Howie Kendrick
3B David Freese
SS Erick Aybar
LF Josh Hamilton
DH C.J. Cron
C Chris Iannetta
SP Jered Weaver
Josh Hamilton missed most of September with a shoulder injury, so manager Mike Scioscia is understandably skeptical about what he’ll bring to the table against a left-hander and has him batting seventh. Chris Iannetta gets the nod at catcher over Hank Conger and C.J. Cron’s right-handed bat is in the lineup at designated hitter.
Most of manager Terry Collins’ coaching staff will remain intact for 2015, but apparently not the hitting coach and assistant hitting coach.
Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reports that the Mets will part ways with both Lamar Johnson and Luis Natera following a season in which the team ranked near the middle of the pack in most categories, including eighth in runs scored.
Johnson had been the Mets’ minor-league hitting coordinator, but took over as hitting coach in May when Dave Hudgens was fired. Nutera joined the staff in spring training when the assistant hitting coach role was added to the mix.
Cue the usual speculation about Wally Backman joining the staff in some capacity.