The Trade Deadline in the Social Media Age: Rajai Davis just followed a bunch of Cardinals people

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In the past couple of years, the fun harbinger of trades is to watch players hug their teammates in the dugout during games. That’s a sure sign that they were just informed they were traded and they’re about to leave. We saw this last week with Scott Kazmir. It’s come to be called the “Hug Watch” on Twitter.

Here’s a new angle to it. As many, including our Drew Silva noted a few minutes ago, Tigers outfielder Rajai Davis just followed a crap-ton of Cardinals-related accounts on Twitter, including reporters and players. His most recent follows include the MLB.com reporter for the Cardinals, the Fox Sports Midwest people, Randall Grichuk, and a zillion other Cards players, some current, some former.

So: is the “scoop” on an alleged Rajai Davis trade his follow list, or is Davis just bored today and pulling everyone’s leg? Part of me hopes it’s the latter because that’d be pretty hilarious and subversive. Part of me hopes it’s the former because it further shows the inanity of caring about the “scoop” these days.

Jim Crane thought the heat over sign-stealing would blow over by spring training

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The Astros’ sign-stealing story broke in November, a steady drumbeat of coverage of it lasted through December and into January, when Rob Manfred’s report came out about it. The report was damning and, in its wake, Houston’s manager and general manger were both suspended and then fired.

After that a steady stream of media reports came out which not only made the whole affair seem even worse than Manfred’s report suggested, but which also suggested that, on some level, Major League Baseball had bungled it all and it was even worse than it had first seemed.

Rather than Manfred and the Astros putting this all behind them, the story grew. As it grew, both the Red Sox and Mets fired their managers and, in a few isolated media appearances, Astros’ players seemed ill-prepared for questions on it all. Once spring training began the Astros made even worse public appearances and, for the past week and change, each day has given us a new player or three angrily speaking out about how mad they are at the Astros and how poorly they’ve handled all of this.

Why have they handled it so poorly? As always, look to poor leadership:

Guess not.

In other news, Crane was — and I am not making this up — recently named the Houston Sports Executive of the Year. An award he has totally, totally earned, right?