This isn’t exactly major, as Manny Mota has been only sort of a part time coach for several years, but it’s still the end of an era of sorts for the Dodgers. Bill Shaikin reports:
In recent years, Mota has coached on the field before the game, then changed out of his uniform and headed to the press box to scout the opposing team or work on the Spanish TV broadcast. He no longer coaches the major league hitters or travels with the major league team. With the Dodgers on the road this week, Mota traveled to the minor leagues and appeared at the dedication of a youth baseball field.
Mota is 75 and there’s a whole new regime, so it sort of makes sense. There can be only one Don Zimmer, right? Plus: the article suggests that Mota’s role will be expanded on the Spanish speaking broadcasts, which themselves will be expanding in the Dodgers new TV deal.
The Astros have released first baseman Jon Singleton, Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle reports.
Singleton, 26, was suspended for 100 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse for a third time. He has had issues with marijuana in the post and admitted to being a drug addict several years ago. He said, “At this point it’s pretty evident to me that I’m a drug addict. I don’t openly tell everyone that, but it’s pretty apparent to myself. I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can’t block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that.”
Singleton played parts of two seasons in the majors in 2014-15 with the Astros, batting a combined .171/.290/.331 with 14 home runs and 50 RBI in — appropriately — 420 plate appearances. He spent 2016 with Triple-A Fresno and 2017 with Double-A Corpus Christi, putting up middling numbers.
If he can convince teams he’s still actively working to overcome his addiction, Singleton may be able to find an opportunity elsewhere. But his road back to the majors remains long. He was once a top prospect in the Phillies’ system, then was traded to the Astros in the Hunter Pence deal back in July 2011.