The Cubs wasted little time getting on the board during Saturday’s matinee against the Pirates. Kris Bryant went deep on a 2-0 pitch against Pittsburgh starter Tyler Glasnow, sending the ball a projected 451 feet to score Kyle Schwarber for an early 2-0 lead.
The ball grazed the video scoreboard in left field before falling into the stands. According to Carrie Muskat of MLB.com, only six home runs have managed to hit Wrigley Field’s monitor — unsurprisingly, Bryant is responsible for four of those shots.
The rest of the inning was no less impressive, as the Cubs followed Bryant’s first home run of the season by boosting the score to 4-0 and hitting for the cycle with a Kyle Schwarber leadoff double, Addison Russell triple and Jason Heyward RBI single.
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.