Orioles shortstop J.J. Hardy cleared for rehab assignment

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It’s taken much longer than initially expected, but the Orioles have cleared shortstop J.J. Hardy to begin a minor-league rehab assignment as he comes back from a left shoulder injury that’s sidelined him all season.

Nearly a month ago Hardy was said to be “close” to starting a rehab stint, but instead he continued to rest before receiving a cortisone injection in late April. Now he’s set to play Monday night at Double-A and will likely play at least 3-4 games there before potentially coming off the disabled list, according to Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com.

Hardy’s return would provide a much-needed boost to the Orioles’ injury wrecked middle infield, which of late has consisted of Everth Cabrera at shortstop and 32-year-old Steve Pearce seeing his first career action at second base.

Ned Yost to retire as Royals manager

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The Kansas City Royals just announced that Ned Yost will retire following the final game of the season. Mike Matheny will take over as the Royals manager for the 2020 season.

Yost, 65, led the Royals to victory in the 2015 World Series and to back-to-back American League pennants in 2014 and 2015. He will retire as the winningest manager in Royals history. In ten years at the helm in Kansas City he is 744-836 with five games remaining. Before he managed the Royals he managed the Milwaukee Brewers for six seasons, compiling a 457-502 record. In all, he is 1,201-1,338. When he’s done on Sunday he will finish 32nd all-time in games managed with 2,544.

The Royals now will look for the man who will, hopefully, see the current rebuild through. Multiple reporters have cited former St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny as Yost’s likely replacement. He currently serves as a special advisor in the club’s player development department. He managed the Cards from 2012-18, winning the NL pennant in 2013 and finishing with a record of 591-474 in St. Louis.

Here is the Royals official statement on Yost’s retirement: