Eric Hinske isn’t wasting any time going from playing to coaching, joining new Cubs manager Rick Renteria’s staff as first base coach.
Hinske played for the Diamondbacks this year, hitting .173 in 52 games to finish up a 12-season career in which he won a Rookie of the Year award and then went on to play for seven different teams. He was released by Arizona in July.
Hinske was originally drafted by the Cubs in 1998, but never played for Chicago because he was traded to the A’s for Miguel Cairo in 2001 (and then later traded to the Blue Jays for Billy Koch that same year).
Red Sox outfielder Shane Victorino moved into a tie with Alex Rodriguez for the most post-season HBP’s in the bottom of the first inning of NLCS Game 2. Tigers starter Max Scherzer drilled Victorino in the left shoulder with a 91 MPH fastball, his ninth career in the post-season. The errant pitch put a runner on first base with one out. Scherzer, however, was able to strike out Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz to end the inning.
Victorino was hit twice in Game 4 of the ALDS against the Rays, as well as once each in Game 1 and Game 3. He led the league with 18 HBP’s during the regular season, 15 of them occurring in his last 44 games of the regular season after he became a full-time right-handed hitter.
Not many retiring ballplayers get special recognition by Major League Baseball. I didn’t see Carlos Lee and Scott Proctor getting this treatment. But Mariano Rivera is a special case. Here’s the ad which will run in Thursday’s USA Today, New York Daily News, New York Post andMetro NY:
And here’s a video tribute produced by MLB Video.
OK, maybe Miguel Cairo got this treatment. I seem to remember something like that for Miguel Cairo. I’m too busy to check, though.
The Miami Marlins just announced that they signed Casey Kotchman. Not gonna say Casey Kotchman doesn’t streak across my radar very often, but I had no idea that he wasn’t on a team. This time next year I imagine he’ll replace Miguel Cairo as that guy I am shocked to learn is still in baseball once or twice a year.
Kotchman hit .229/.280/.333 with 12 home runs, 55 RBI and a .612 OPS in 142 games with the Indians last season. Presumably he’d back up Logan Morrison. Or cover first in the unlikely event Morrison plays some in left.
Or right if Jeff Loria trades Giancarlo Stanton for some magic beans two days after suggesting he purchase property in south Florida.
Miguel Cairo is retiring after a 17-year career, but he’s staying with the Reds and moving into the front office as a special assistant to general manager Walt Jocketty.
That makes sense, because Cairo was seemingly beloved by every manager and general manager he ever played for, which is how you play 17 seasons in the majors while hitting .264 with a .675 OPS despite not having the range to even play shortstop.
Cairo had two of his best seasons for the Reds in 2010 and 2011, topping a .725 OPS in back-to-back years for the only time, but he hit just .187 last season at age 38.
Considering his limitations as a player 17 seasons, 4,392 plate appearances, and $10 million in earnings was a helluva career for Cairo.