The Marlins are looking for a place to play the Mariners next year

26 Comments

The Marlins and Mariners are set to play an interleague series next year, and Florida is supposed to the home team. But thanks to U2’s tour — man, Bono ruins everything, at least since “All That You Can’t Leave Behind” — Pro Player Robbie Sun Life Stadipark will be occupied.  Options:

  • Play in Puerto Rico: Pro: there will still be plenty of humidty! Con: Hiram Bithorn stadium isn’t exactly ideal as a major league facility anymore — one Mets writer said that parts of the clubhouse ceiling were falling in during the Mets-Marlins series there this year.
  • Play in Vancouver: Pro: Sure, it’s closer to home for the Mariners than the Marlins, but both teams are set to head back west after their series anyway, so maybe this makes travel easier. Con: the dome in Vancouver — which I had not realized was built to attract a major league team until I read the linked article — is undergoing renovations and the existing minor league ballpark only holds 7,000. The Marlins are used to that, but the Mariners may not like it.
  • Play in Seattle: Pro: It’s a major league ballpark. Con: This takes a home series away from the Marlins. Pro: it was good enough for the Blue Jays and Phillies this season, so it’s not unprecedented.

My guess is that they just play in Seattle. Because really: if you cut Loria a check of sufficient size he’d sign off on anything

Giants hire Gabe Kapler as new manager

9 Comments

The Giants announced on Tuesday the hiring of Gabe Kapler as manager. Kapler, filling the extremely large shoes of future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy, inked a three-year deal, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Kapler was one of three finalists for the job, beating out Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Rays bench coach Matt Quataro.

Following his 12-year playing career, Kapler was a coach for Israel’s team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier. He then became an analyst for FS1 before joining the Dodgers’ front office as the director of player development in November 2014. He was involved in three scandals there: one in which he tried to handle a sexual assault incident involving two Dodgers minor league players without telling police, one in which he allegedly discriminated against Nick Francona, a veteran and former baseball operations employee, and an incident that implicated most of the Dodgers’ front office concerning the recruiting of international free agents. The Dodgers reportedly kept a spreadsheet of employees and their level of criminality.

Despite Kapler’s background, the Phillies hired him as their manager ahead of the 2018 season. He would lead the Phillies to an 80-82 record that year and then helped them improve by one game in 2019, finishing at exactly .500 before being fired. Kapler’s tenure in Philly was tumultuous, often drawing ire from the local media and subsequently the fan base for not being tough enough on his players. The Phillies also reportedly had a clubhouse issue in 2018 in which players were playing video games in the clubhouse during games, prompting Carlos Santana to smash a TV with a bat.

Kapler has a history with Farhan Zaidi, the Giants’ president of baseball operations. They worked together in the Dodgers’ front office as Zaidi served as GM from November 2014-18.