Ned Yost
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Royals extend Ned Yost through 2019

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Royals skipper Ned Yost will return to manage the club again in 2019, per a team announcement. Yost previously signed a two-year extension over the 2016 offseason and would have seen his contract expire following the conclusion of the 2018 season on Sunday.

It’s been a difficult year for the 64-year-old manager, who is coming off of one of the worst Royals seasons in franchise history. The team is poised to finish the year with at least 103 losses, marking their third-worst record since their inception in 1969 and their worst since Yost took over for Trey Hillman in 2010. In 2018, they got off to a poor start right out of the gate and sank to fifth place in the AL Central by the second day of the season, where they remained with little variation throughout the year.

Despite the Royals’ persistent troubles, however, their veteran manager still holds the winningest record in club history. He’ll enter Sunday’s season finale with a 687-735 record, one AL Central title, two American League pennants and one World Series win over nine years in Kansas City. There are other reasons for hope, too, like the team’s core of young, talented players — Adalberto Mondesi, Brett Phillips, and Ryan O'Hearn among them — as well as the fact that they’re only just emerging from the first year of a lengthy rebuild. Yost will see them through another year as they attempt to work their way back to the postseason, though he’s said he looks forward to handing the reins to his successor after helping shape the current roster into a playoff contender. Whether the Royals are capable of undergoing such a drastic transformation over the next year, of course, remains to be seen.

Anthony Rendon explains why he didn’t go to the White House

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Today the Angels introduced their newest big star, Anthony Rendon, who just signed a seven-year, $245 million contract to play in Orange County.

And it is Orange County, not Los Angeles, Rendon stressed at the press conference. When asked about the Dodgers, who had also been reported to be courting him, Rendon said he preferred the Angels because, “the Hollywood lifestyle . . . didn’t seem like it would be a fit for us as a family.”

What “the Hollywood Lifestyle” means in that context could mean a lot of things I suppose. It could be about the greater media scrutiny Dodgers players are under compared to Angels players. It could mean that he’d simply prefer to live in Newport Beach than, I dunno, wherever Dodgers players live. Pasadena? Pasadena is more convenient to Dodger Stadium than the beach. Who knows. They never did let Yasiel Puig get that helicopter he wanted, so traffic could’ve been a consideration.

But maybe it’s a subtle allusion to political/cultural stuff. Orange County has trended to the left in some recent elections but it is, historically speaking, a conservative stronghold in Southern California. And, based on something else he said in his press conference, Rendon seems to be pretty conscious of geographical/political matters:

A shoutout to the notion of Texas being Trump country and an askance glance at “the Hollywood Lifestyle” of Los Angeles all in the same press conference. That’s a lot of culture war ground covered in one press conference. So much so that I can’t decide if I should warn Rendon that both Texas and Orange County are trending leftward or if I should tell him to stick to sports.