The Rays have acquired catcher Travis d'Arnaud from the Dodgers, per an official announcement on Friday. The Dodgers will receive cash considerations in the deal and are expected to recall a catcher to fill d’Arnaud’s roster spot. The Rays, meanwhile, have yet to announce a corresponding move, though they intend to place d’Arnaud on the 25-man roster sometime prior to Saturday’s game against the Yankees.
The 30-year-old d’Arnaud didn’t last long in Los Angeles. After getting released by the Mets at the beginning of the month, he inked a one-year contract with the Dodgers last Sunday and made just one official appearance for the team, going 0-for-1 in a pinch-hit opportunity during their 6-0 loss to the Nationals on Thursday night. He’s batting a woeful .083/.154/.083 with two hits, two RBI, and two walks in 26 PA so far this year.
Still, the Rays need a warm body behind the plate after losing Michael Pérez to right oblique tightness on Tuesday and Mike Zunino to a left quad strain on Wednesday. Until the club’s catching duo returns to the lineup, d’Arnaud is almost guaranteed to see regular starts ahead of the only other healthy backups on the roster, rookies Nick Ciuffo and Anthony Bemboom.
The Padres fired manager Andy Green on Saturday, per an official team release. Bench coach Rod Barajas will step into the position for the remaining eight games of the 2019 season.
Executive Vice President and GM A.J. Preller gave a statement in the wake of Green’s dismissal:
I want to thank Andy for his tireless work and dedication to the Padres over the last four seasons. This was an incredibly difficult decision, but one we felt was necessary at this time to take our organization to the next level and expedite the process of bringing a championship to San Diego. Our search for a new manager will begin immediately.
In additional comments made to reporters, Preller added that the decision had not been made based on the Padres’ current win-loss record (a fourth-place 69-85 in the NL West), but rather on the lack of response coming from the team.
“Looking at the performance, looking at it from an improvement standing, we haven’t seen the team respond in the last few months,” Preller said. “When you get to the point where you’re questioning where things are headed … we have to make that call.”
Since his hiring in October 2015, Green has faced considerable challenges on the Padres’ long and winding path to postseason contention. He shepherded San Diego through four consecutive losing seasons, drawing a career 274-366 record as the club extended their streak to 13 seasons without a playoff appearance. And, despite some definite strides in the right direction — including an eight-year, $144 million pact with Eric Hosmer, a 10-year, $300 million pact with superstar Manny Machado, and the development of top prospect Fernando Tatís Jr. — lingering injuries and inexplicable slumps from key players stalled the rebuild longer than the Padres would have liked.
For now, they’ll prepare to roll the dice with a new skipper in 2020, though any potential candidates have yet to be identified for the role. It won’t come cheap, either, as Green inked a four-year extension back in 2017 — one that should have seen him through the team’s 2021 campaign.