Mr. ________

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We all know that Jeff Conine is “Mr. Marlin.”  At least I hope we know that, because that sort of thing is worth knowing. But who is the “Mr.____” of all the other teams? Rob Neyer takes a stab at it today over at Baseball Nation. And it’s a pretty good stab.

There are a few some might take issue with, of course. I bet if you asked 100 Reds fans of a certain age who their “Mr. Red” is 87 of them would say Pete Rose and not Johnny Bench, but since Rose is excluded from everything else I get why he’s excluded here. I tend to think that “Mr. Yankee” should be someone who never wore another team’s uniform, so I’d probably go with Gehrig or DiMaggio over Ruth. After all, this isn’t about the best player, just the one that typifies the franchise in some important way.

Anyway, fun mental exercise.

Royals fire manager Mike Matheny after 65-97 end to season

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred were fired by the Kansas Cty Royals on Wednesday night, shortly after the struggling franchise finished the season 65-97 with a listless 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.

The Royals had exercised their option on Matheny’s contract for 2023 during spring training, when the club hoped it was turning the corner from also-ran to contender again. But plagued by poor pitching, struggles from young position players and failed experiments with veterans, the Royals were largely out of playoff contention by the middle of summer.

The disappointing product led owner John Sherman last month to fire longtime front office executive Dayton Moore, the architect of back-to-back American League champions and the 2015 World Series title team. Moore was replaced by one of his longtime understudies, J.J. Picollo, who made the decision to fire Matheny hours after the season ended.

Matheny became the fifth big league manager to be fired this year.

Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was replaced on June 3 by Rob Thomson, who engineered a miraculous turnaround to get the Phillies into the playoffs as a wild-card team. The Angels replaced Joe Maddon with Phil Nevin four days later, Toronto’s Charlie Montoyo was succeeded by John Schneider on July 13 and the Rangers’ Chris Woodward by Tony Beasley on Aug. 15.

In addition, Miami’s Don Mattingly said late last month that he will not return next season.