Now that the Marlins have gotten older and worse by signing Garrett Jones, the smarter teams are coming out of the woodwork in pursuit of Logan Morrison. FOXSports.com’s Jon Morosi says both the Pirates and Rays have had conversations regarding the first baseman.
John Perotto of the Beaver County Times reports that the Pirates and Marlins have talked about a 2-for-1 that would send the versatile Josh Harrison and a second player to Miami for Morrison. Ironically, that would essentially make Morrison the replacement for Jones in Pittsburgh.
What’s going on in the Rays’ talks isn’t as clear, though it was reported last week that the Marlins liked infielder-outfielder Sean Rodriguez. Either Harrison or Rodriguez could serve as a starting third baseman for Miami until 2013 first-round pick Colin Moran is ready.
The interesting sidenote here is that both the Pirates and Rays would likely prefer to sign James Loney to play first base than acquire Morrison. Loney, though, is currently asking for a three-year deal in the $20 million range. If Morrison does get traded to one of the teams, it could actually serve to bring down Loney’s price tag for the other.
The Padres fired manager Andy Green on Saturday, per an official team release. Bench coach Rod Barajas will step into the position for the remaining eight games of the 2019 season.
Executive Vice President and GM A.J. Preller gave a statement in the wake of Green’s dismissal:
I want to thank Andy for his tireless work and dedication to the Padres over the last four seasons. This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one we felt was necessary at this time to take our organization to the next level and expedite the process of bringing a championship to San Diego. Our search for a new manager will begin immediately.
In additional comments made to reporters, Preller added that the decision had not been made based on the Padres’ current win-loss record (a fourth-place 69-85 in the NL West), but rather on the lack of response coming from the team.
“Looking at the performance, looking at it from an improvement standing, we haven’t seen the team respond in the last few months,” Preller said. “When you get to the point where you’re questioning where things are headed … we have to make that call.”
Since his hiring in October 2015, Green has faced considerable challenges on the Padres’ long and winding path to postseason contention. He shepherded San Diego through four consecutive losing seasons, drawing a career 274-366 record as the club extended their streak to 13 seasons without a playoff appearance. And, despite some definite strides in the right direction — including an eight-year, $144 million pact with Eric Hosmer, a 10-year, $300 million pact with superstar Manny Machado, and the development of top prospect Fernando Tatís Jr. — lingering injuries and inexplicable slumps from key players stalled the rebuild longer than the Padres would have liked.
For now, they’ll prepare to roll the dice with a new skipper in 2020, though any potential candidates have yet to be identified for the role. It won’t come cheap, either, as Green inked a four-year extension back in 2017 — one that should have seen him through the team’s 2021 campaign.