ESPN analyst and former major league skipper Bobby Valentine has interviewed for a variety of managerial openings this offseason and has expressed interest in a few different gigs. He is highly respected and has enjoyed success at nearly every level of baseball, and yet he hasn’t been offered a position by any club.
Maybe his contract demands are too high, or maybe he doesn’t want to step into a rebuilding role. Either way, it looks as though Bobby V won’t be coaching in 2011.
Ken Davidoff of New York’s Newsday thinks that Valentine will wind up back at ESPN in an analyst role when all is said and done, and the 60-year-old hinted as much when speaking with Chris Russo on Sirius XM’s Mad Dog Radio this weekend.
“If it was just a job, I think I could already have it, and probably have it a few places, and I really am flattered by the people who have had me in and have talked to me and even offered me a chance,” Valentine said Friday. “But I’m looking for that perfect situation, and it hasn’t presented itself yet.”
Valentine has been courted by the Marlins, Mariners and even Blue Jays this offseason. The Mets have not yet begun their search for a new skipper, opting instead to focus on finding a new general manager. Maybe they’ll consider giving Bobby V another try once their front office is settled.
The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.
Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.
While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.