Brewers release Taylor Jungmann, who will go to Japan

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The Milwaukee Brewers announced a bit ago that pitcher Taylor Jungmann has been released in order to allow him to pursue an opportunity in Japan. The Brewers needed to make some sort of 40-man roster move to make way for Boone Logan, who was signed today, and this was it.

It’s not known which club Jungmann will be joining in NPB, but whoever gets him will have a pretty spiffy pitcher on their hands. The 28-year-old Jungmann spent most of 2017 season in the minors, posting a 3.06 ERA and 113/56 K/BB ratio in 123.1 innings between Double-A Biloxi and Triple-A Colorado Springs. While he hasn’t pitched fantastically at the big league level — he holds a 4.54 career ERA in 146.2 innings for Milwaukee and was pummeled in nine games over the past two seasons — he pitched quite well in 21 starts in his rookie season in 2015, suggesting he has some promise.

Now that promise, if it is realized, will be realized in the NPB.

Royals fire manager Mike Matheny after 65-97 end to season

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred were fired by the Kansas Cty Royals on Wednesday night, shortly after the struggling franchise finished the season 65-97 with a listless 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.

The Royals had exercised their option on Matheny’s contract for 2023 during spring training, when the club hoped it was turning the corner from also-ran to contender again. But plagued by poor pitching, struggles from young position players and failed experiments with veterans, the Royals were largely out of playoff contention by the middle of summer.

The disappointing product led owner John Sherman last month to fire longtime front office executive Dayton Moore, the architect of back-to-back American League champions and the 2015 World Series title team. Moore was replaced by one of his longtime understudies, J.J. Picollo, who made the decision to fire Matheny hours after the season ended.

Matheny became the fifth big league manager to be fired this year.

Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was replaced on June 3 by Rob Thomson, who engineered a miraculous turnaround to get the Phillies into the playoffs as a wild-card team. The Angels replaced Joe Maddon with Phil Nevin four days later, Toronto’s Charlie Montoyo was succeeded by John Schneider on July 13 and the Rangers’ Chris Woodward by Tony Beasley on Aug. 15.

In addition, Miami’s Don Mattingly said late last month that he will not return next season.