Juan Samuel is sticking with the Orioles

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I always wondered what happened to interim managers when they were replaced. You always hear about them being reassigned and stuff, but I had always assumed that was a euphemism for what I suspect really happened to them: getting rolled up in a carpet and dumped in a ravine someplace.  In light of that, I’ve always considered being an interim manager only a slightly more desirable job than being the #2 guy in Al Qaeda: a shaky-at-best gig that lasted only until you heard the drones coming for you.

But not so with Juan Samuel!  He’s sticking with the Orioles after Buck Showalter takes over and, according to MLB.com’s Britt Ghiroli, he’ll be scouting in the Dominican Republic.  Of course he’s from the Dominican Republic so this could very well be a “go home, relax, get paid, and if we hear from you we hear from you” kind of gig.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to write another letter to that nice family in the country my parents sent our dog to live with back in 1981.  I hope Old Ben is still happy chasing rabbits all day!

Cardinals shut down Carlos Martínez for two weeks due to shoulder issue

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MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosh reports that the Cardinals are shutting down pitcher Carlos Martínez from throwing for two weeks because his shoulder strength isn’t where it should have been at this point. Langosch added that an MRI showed no structural damage in Martínez’s right shoulder.

Interestingly, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak didn’t sound too happy with Martínez offseason training regimen. Per Mark Saxon of The Athletic, Mozeliak said, “Obviously, there’s a history with Carlos’ shoulder and it would be probably in everybody’s best interest if he maintained a constant or perpetual approach to that program.”

Martínez, 27, battled oblique and shoulder injuries last year. He accrued just 118 2/3 innings, making just 18 starts. He was moved to the bullpen when he returned from the disabled list in August and finished out the season in that role. Still, Martínez managed a 3.11 ERA with 117 strikeouts and 60 walks.

Langosch reported last week that the Cardinals were considering using Martínez in relief again in 2019. The latest news may push the Cardinals to indeed use Martínez out of the bullpen once again. He will be reevaluated in early March, but there is a chance he won’t be ready for Opening Day.