Davey Johnson refuses to shave until the National offense wakes up

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Nationals manager Davey Johnson isn’t happy with his team’s offense, which enters tonight’s series opener against the Phillies having averaged 3.38 runs per game, the second-worst rate in the league. Looking for a quirky way to motivate his team, Johnson says he will not shave until the offense makes an appearance:

The Nationals manager apologized for his scraggly appearance before Friday’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies, but he added: “I figured I couldn’t get any uglier, so what the heck.”

[…]

The 70-year-old Johnson says it’ll be hard to notice his facial growth because it’s gray and doesn’t grow fast.

Said Johnson: “Maybe I can change the luck.”

With the news of Danny Espinosa’s broken wrist, Bryce Harper getting banged up, and Jayson Werth on the DL until June, the Nationals are going to leaning even harder on Ryan Zimmerman and Ian Desmond, two of their only sources of offense this year.

Pirates release Francisco Cervelli

Francisco Cervelli
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The Pittsburgh Pirates just announced that they have released catcher Francisco Cervelli. No waivers, no DFA. Just his unconditional release.

Cervelli had been on a rehab assignment in the minors in his efforts to come back from a concussion. He had been sidelined since May, and there had been no timeline for his return, but he played in a minor league game as recently as Monday.

Over the summer, however, Cervelli voiced doubts about his ability to continue catching in light of the six concussions he’s weathered over the last decade. At one point he said he could not catch again but then walked it back. Whether his release was requested and whether Cervelli plans to end his big league career is not yet known.

I’m sure we’ll hear more about this soon.

UPDATE: Um, OK. Based on this I guess it’s more of a matter of the Pirates simply not wanting him anymore: