Buck Showalter may stop managing to replace Andy MacPhail in Orioles front office

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Reports surfaced last month that Andy MacPhail plans to step down as Baltimore’s president of baseball operations after this season is over and Dan Connelly of the Baltimore Sun speculates that manager Buck Showalter may be the Orioles’ choice to replace him.

Showalter previously told Bob Nightengale of USA Today that he’s not interested in being a general manager, but Connelly writes that “it could be his job if he wants it” and “if he’s convinced he can make more of an impact in the front office he’ll take his bad knees and turned ankle and hobble upstairs.”

Connelly writes that serving as manager and president of baseball operations simultaneously is not something Showalter would do, so it likely depends on how much longer the 55-year-old wants to manage. Showalter guided the Orioles to a big second-half turnaround last season, but has gone just 68-92 as the full-time manager this season after also finishing his stint as Rangers manager with back-to-back losing seasons.

Matt Shoemaker to undergo MRI on sprained left knee

Matt Shoemaker
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Blue Jays starter Matt Shoemaker has been diagnosed with a left knee sprain following his early departure from Saturday’s game. He’s scheduled to undergo an MRI on Sunday, after which the club will be able to determine the extent of his injury and draw up a more definite timeline for his return to the mound.

The right-hander held the A’s scoreless through three innings of three-hit, one-strikeout ball on Saturday. In the bottom of the third, with two outs and Matt Chapman on first, Shoemaker helped complete an inning-ending putout after Chapman tried to steal second. He tagged Chapman between first and second base, but appeared to twist his leg in the process and immediately started limping away.

Shoemaker was helped off the field after the play and was swiftly replaced by righty Sam Gaviglio in the bottom of the fourth. This is the first serious injury the 32-year-old has sustained since he underwent forearm surgery and missed nearly all of his 2018 campaign with the Angels. While he’s not expected to be sidelined for quite as long this time around, it’s still a concerning setback for the Blue Jays’ no. 2 starter, who currently boasts a sterling 1.57 ERA, 2.8 BB/9, and 7.5 SO/9 through his first 28 2/3 innings of 2019.

The Blue Jays will undoubtedly feel the lack of Shoemaker’s presence over the next few days, but they managed deliver a blowout win on Saturday even without his help. Behind six innings of one-run ball from Gaviglio and Elvis Luciano, the offense mustered up 10 runs — the most they’ve collected in a single game all season — and kept the A’s hardest hits at bay with impressive catches from Billy McKinney and Freddy Galvis.