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Curt Schilling would like to manage the Phillies

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Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that “friends close to Curt Schilling” say he wants to interview for the Phillies managerial opening and/or the RedSox pitching coach job. They say he’d “love to get back in the game.”

I don’t know how much weight to give this report because it’s based on the premise that Schilling has friends and, frankly, I have a hard time seeing that.

That aside, I have a hard time seeing how, based on his post playing career track record, Schilling could be hired for any forward-facing job like manager or coach, regardless of his baseball knowledge and experience. You have to deal with the media in those jobs and Schilling, as part of his right wing talking head schtick, has demonized the media over the past couple of years, going so far as to endorse the sentiment that journalists should be killed.

Was he joking? Does he do such things simply to get attention? Who cares? We are what we do, and no matter what his intent is, he has seriously and quite understandably alienated the working press. In light of that there is no one in their right mind who would give Schilling the job of being, basically, the face and defacto spokesman of their franchise. And that’s assuming you had any faith that he wouldn’t create more controversies with his mouth and conspiracy-addled brain going forward. Which I would not bet a lot of money on, frankly.

Schilling is one of the best pitchers of the past 30 years. He, in my estimate anyway, is of Hall of Fame caliber or is something very close to it. He was, at one time, the lead analyst for the game’s marquee broadcast each week. But he has totally, intentionally, driven all of that into the ditch based on his irresponsible and inflammatory public persona. If indeed it is just a persona.

Dude made his bed. He’s gonna have to lay in it. And it’s not gonna be in a hotel suite down the hall from the rest of a major league ballclub on road trips.

Rays’ Erik Neander named Executive of the Year

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At the GM meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona on Monday, Rays GM Erik Neander was named the recipient of Major League Baseball’s Executive of the Year Award for the 2019 season. The Yankees’ Brian Cashman was the runner-up while the Athletics’ Billy Beane and the Twins’ Derek Falvey tied for third place.

Neander has worked for the Rays since 2017 but has operated in his current role since November 2016, taking over for Matthew Silverman who was promoted to president of the Rays alongside Brian Auld.

The Rays had, by far, the lowest payroll in baseball at $53.5 million, according to USA TODAY. Neander’s peers voting him Executive of the Year on the same today the league had to curtail its awarding of a prize belt to the team that suppressed salaries the most in arbitration is… certainly interesting timing.

At any rate, Neander’s Rays went 96-66 in 2019, finishing in second place in the AL East behind the 103-59 Yankees. The Rays claimed the second AL Wild Card and defeated the A’s to earn entry into the ALDS where they lost in five games to the Astros. It was the Rays’ first playoff appearance since 2013 and their regular season win total was second-most in franchise history behind the 2008 team (97).