White Sox prospect Carlos Rodon made his major league debut on April 21, but as a long reliever. In 6 1/3 innings over three relief appearances, he allowed two runs on nine hits and four walks with four strikeouts.
Rodon started the second game of Saturday’s double-header against the Reds, pitching in the place of the suspended Jeff Samardzija. While it wasn’t a permanent move into the rotation — the White Sox will likely move him back into relief duty — it was still an audition of sorts as the club tries to find out what their first-round pick (third overall) in the 2014 draft can do.
Rodon started off shaky, issuing a leadoff walk to Billy Hamilton. Hamilton, as he is wont to do, stole second. He then took third on a passed ball. Rodon walked Marlon Byrd to put runners on first and third with no outs for Joey Votto. Rodon bounced back, striking out Votto, then getting Todd Frazier to pop-up into a double play.
The 22-year-old lefty got into more trouble in the third, allowing back-to-back one-out singles and a walk before Joey Votto knocked in two runs with another single. But those would be the only two runs Rodon would allow in the outing. He finished with the win, having yielded the two runs on four hits and four walks with eight strikeouts in six innings. It wasn’t the best outing, but it wasn’t the worst either, and Rodon was able to miss some bats and work his way out of a very tough situation. Not bad feather to put in one’s cap after debuting in the majors.
The Giants announced on Tuesday the hiring of Gabe Kapler as manager. Kapler, filling the extremely large shoes of future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy, inked a three-year deal, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Kapler was one of three finalists for the job, beating out Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Rays bench coach Matt Quataro.
Following his 12-year playing career, Kapler was a coach for Israel’s team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier. He then became an analyst for FS1 before joining the Dodgers’ front office as the director of player development in November 2014. He was involved in three scandals there: one in which he tried to handle a sexual assault incident involving two Dodgers minor league players without telling police, one in which he allegedly discriminated against Nick Francona, a veteran and former baseball operations employee, and an incident that implicated most of the Dodgers’ front office concerning the recruiting of international free agents. The Dodgers reportedly kept a spreadsheet of employees and their level of criminality.
Despite Kapler’s background, the Phillies hired him as their manager ahead of the 2018 season. He would lead the Phillies to an 80-82 record that year and then helped them improve by one game in 2019, finishing at exactly .500 before being fired. Kapler’s tenure in Philly was tumultuous, often drawing ire from the local media and subsequently the fan base for not being tough enough on his players. The Phillies also reportedly had a clubhouse issue in 2018 in which players were playing video games in the clubhouse during games, prompting Carlos Santana to smash a TV with a bat.
Kapler has a history with Farhan Zaidi, the Giants’ president of baseball operations. They worked together in the Dodgers’ front office as Zaidi served as GM from November 2014-18.