Well, it appears the good vibes that Pedro Alvarez sent into the Pittsburgh air on Saturday night have quickly made their way out of the stratosphere. The Bucs decided to cut ties with pitching coach Joe Kerrigan and bench coach Gary Varsho early Sunday morning, according to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Kerrigan was hired by the Pirates in October of 2008 and has watched a low-on-talent staff post a 5.07 collective ERA this season, which ranks 28th in the majors. The 55-year-old has coached for the Expos, the Red Sox, the Phillies and the Yankees, and he also pitched for four-plus seasons. Now he’ll look for a job elsewhere.
Varsho, 49, was hired to be the Pirates’ bench coach in November of 2007. He also played in the majors at one point, racking up 204 hits and 84 RBI as an outfielder for the Pirates, Cubs, Reds and Phillies.
The White Sox won’t make a bid for free agent outfielder Bryce Harper, Bruce Levine of 670 The Score reports. Believed to be the favorites to land shortstop Manny Machado in free agency, the White Sox watched him ink a 10-year, $300 million contract with the Padres. The club is apparently content with its roster otherwise.
Harper would certainly be an upgrade in the outfield, which currently features Adam Engel, Nicky Delmonico, and Jon Jay. It will soon feature prospects Eloy Jiménez and Luis Robert.
Last season, Harper hit .249/.393/.496 with 34 hom eruns, 100 RBI, 103 runs scored, and 13 stolen bases in 695 plate appearances. He led all of baseball, drawing 130 walks. Harper is also a six-time All-Star who won the 2012 NL Rookie of the Year Award and the 2015 NL Most Valuable Player Award.
The Phillies are still believed to be the favorites to sign Harper and the club is confident it will land him, Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Daily News reports.