Francisco Liriano was terrible for the Twins and White Sox last season and then lost out on a ton of guaranteed money with the Pirates when he broke his right arm trying to prank his kids on Christmas morning.
That all led to a whole lot of jokes at his expense and caused Liriano to miss the first month of the season, but now he’s healthy and looking extremely good.
Liriano shut out the Cubs for seven innings last night and is now 3-0 with a 1.00 ERA and 25/6 K/BB ratio in 18 innings for the Pirates.
He hasn’t faced any strong lineups yet through three starts, but it’s hard to argue with 25 strikeouts in 18 innings and as usual if Liriano shows any semblance of decent control he has the raw stuff to dominate.
Fancred’s Jon Heyman reports that former Yankees manager Joe Girardi took himself out of the running for the Reds’ and Rangers’ managerial openings. The “industry speculation” is that Girardi is waiting a year for a potential opening to manage the Cubs.
Current Cubs manager Joe Maddon has one more year left on his contract. While the Cubs have played quite well under his tenure, the front office and Maddon haven’t had any discussions about an extension, which means 2019 might be his final year with the club. Under Maddon’s leadership since 2015, the Cubs won the championship in 2016 and compiled a 387-261 (.597) record during the regular season.
Girardi, 54, spent his first four seasons in the majors with the Cubs and another three towards the end of his career. He managed the Marlins for one year in 2006, then managed the Yankees from 2008-17, leading them to a World Series in ’09 and an overall regular season record of 910-710 (.562).