Bill Baer

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The Binghamton Mets are rebranding and taking votes on their new team name

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The Mets’ Double-A in Binghamton is rebranding and is taking votes to come up with their new team name. There are six options and they’re all great.

Craig wrote about SB Nation’s minor league team name generator last month, and the six options sound like they came from that. The six options are:

  • Bullheads
  • Gobblers
  • Rocking Horses
  • Rumble Ponies
  • Stud Muffins
  • Timber Jockeys

Stud Muffins is hilarious, but I feel like the novelty would wear off quickly. My vote is for Rumble Ponies. C’mon, America, do what’s right.

Fredi Gonzalez found out he was fired because of a flight notification email

ATLANTA, GA - MAY 06: Fredi Gonzalez #33 of the Atlanta Braves stands in the dugout prior to the game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Turner Field on May 6, 2016 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)
Daniel Shirey/Getty Images
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The Braves planned to tell Fredi Gonzalez he was fired on Tuesday, when president of baseball operations John Hart could join GM John Coppolella in Pittsburgh. However, Gonzalez received a flight notification email informing him of a flight back to Atlanta on Tuesday afternoon. The Braves are in Pittsburgh through Thursday, so Gonzalez was able to put two and two together, David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Gonzalez was zen about the situation, however. From O’Brien’s column:

“What would have sucked is if you’d dragged it all the way out to the weekend before the season ended, and then got whacked,” he said. “There’s no perfect timing, but in this situation I think sooner than later was better.”

He added, “I think I’ll be OK. I’ve already talked to a bunch of baseball people, they texted me, offering support. Maybe I’ll take a week or two off, a month off, ride the motorcycle around before it gets too hot.”

Brian Snitker, formerly the manager at Triple-A Gwinnett, will manage the Braves in the interim. He’s overseeing the Braves tonight for the first time as they take on the Pirates.

Brad Ausmus suspended one game for Monday’s meltdown

HOUSTON, TX - APRIL 17:  Manager Brad Ausmus #7 waits on the field before the start of their game against the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park on April 17, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Scott Halleran/Getty Images
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The Blue Jays and Rangers weren’t the only ones receiving suspension news on Tuesday. Per MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus has been suspended one game for his meltdown after being ejected from Monday night’s game against the Twins. Ausmus will serve his suspension tonight.

Ausmus didn’t like a called strike three on Nick Castellanos, so he barked at home plate umpire Doug Eddings, who immediately ejected him. Ausmus came out to give Eddings his two cents, which included yelling in his face and then removing his sweater to drape it across home plate.

With Fredi Gonzalez having been fired by the Braves, Ausmus is now the most likely manager to get the pink slip next. His 17-21 Tigers are in fourth place in the AL Central, a far cry from where they thought they’d be after a busy offseason that brought in Jordan Zimmermann, Justin Upton, and Francisco Rodriguez.

Wanna see how Mike Matheny figures out each night’s lineup?

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 26: Manager Mike Matheny #26 of the St Louis Cardinals looks on from the dugout during the first inning of a MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 26, 2015 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Cardinals defeated the Diamondbacks 3-1. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
Ralph Freso/Getty Images
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MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch provided some interesting reporting on Monday, investigating how Cardinals manager Mike Matheny decides on his lineup for each game. It’s really rather fascinating.

To sum up the process: Matheny created a rough draft of Sunday’s lineup against the Dodgers before the series began on Friday. He watches video of Sunday’s starter Alex Wood, then decides if anyone would have a particularly favorable match-up. Matheny then asks for freedback from the Cardinals’ baseball operations staff. He’ll create his first real iteration of the lineup before sending it to his coaching staff for input. Individual performances in the first two games of the series on Friday and Saturday led to some alterations of Sunday’s lineup. By the time he leaves the stadium on Saturday, Matheny had three potential lineups, but he finally decided on one and texted it to his team.

Over the course of a season, optimal lineup construction only amounts to a handful more runs than a sub-optimal lineup, so Matheny is, in reality, spending a lot of time on something that matters little on paper. However, there is something to be said for having a process that doesn’t just favor seniority, which is typically how lineups have been constructed. Matheny’s willingness to solicit outside opinions from both his coaching staff and the baseball operations department shows open-mindedness, another trait that hasn’t been typical of managers in the past.

Video: Check out this catch this Phillies fan made on Monday night

phillies fan
MLB.com
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A fan made a great reactive catch on a foul ball hit by Phillies shortstop Freddy Galvis during the fourth inning of Monday night’s game against the Marlins. Galvis fouled a 1-1 Adam Conley pitch to the right side and the ball was about to hit the fan’s wife, but he stuck his hands out and caught it just in time.

In the word of Tom McCarthy… excellent.