Red Sox to interview Rick Peterson for pitching coach job tomorrow

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Confirming a report from last week, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun passes along word that Rick Peterson will interview for the pitching coach job with the Red Sox tomorrow. He was supposed to interview earlier this week, but it was postponed due to Hurricane Sandy. Peterson’s home is in Belmar, New Jersey.

Peterson was the Orioles’ organizational director of pitching development this season, working with minor leaguers while instilling his use of biomechanics. He previously served as pitching coach with the Athletics, Mets and most recently with the Brewers.

New Red Sox manager John Farrell is a former pitching coach himself and figures to work closely with his pitchers, so it’s safe to say he’ll be very involved in the decision. There is a link between the two, as Peterson was a coach when Farrell was a minor leaguer with the Indians. The Orioles have given Peterson permission to seek an opportunity in the majors, but he will likely return if he doesn’t land a gig as a pitching coach this offseason.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.