The Yankees’ lineup is about to get a boost, as George A. King of the New York Post reports that Jacoby Ellsbury is set to be activated from the disabled list for Wednesday’s game against the Athletics.
Ellsbury has been out since May 19 with a sprained right knee. The 31-year-old has gone 2-for-13 (.154) with a run scored over four minor league rehab games with High-A Tampa. He was scheduled to play in another rehab game today, but Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said he was scratched due to poor field conditions.
“We scratched him because the fields were wet,’’ the GM said of the playing surface Monday in Tampa, where Ellsbury was on a rehab assignment with the Single-A club. “He did some simulated stuff [Monday] and will do it again Tuesday and be activated Wednesday.’’
Ellsbury was batting .324/.412/.372 with one home run, six RBI, and 14 stolen bases over 37 games prior to the injury. Brett Gardner caught fire out of the leadoff spot in June, but he’s expected to slide down to the No. 2 spot upon Ellsbury’s return.
The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.
Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.
Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.
The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.