There has not been much happening for the Detroit Tigers of late, having missed the playoffs and already securing their managerial staff for the 2020 season. But for many other teams, the hot stove is heating up as they ramp up their search for the missing pieces of their puzzles. On Wednesday, the Los Angeles Angels struck first.
The Angels hired Joe Maddon
The most coveted free agent manager available this offseason is Joe Maddon, who was fired by the Chicago Cubs before the final game of the season. Now having signed a three-year, $12 million contract with the Angels he is no longer unemployed.
By signing with the Los Angeles, he returns to the franchise that he spent his first three decades of professional baseball with. He began in 1975 as a minor league player, which he played four years of. He then transitioned to scouting, coaching and managing in the minors until 1994 when he got his first big league coaching position. He served as a first base and bench coach, with the latter being his role for the 2002 World Series run. He then moved on to manage the Tampa Bay Rays and the Chicago Cubs — where he won the first World Series in 107 years in 2016 — before returning home to Los Angeles.
.@Angels officially name Joe Maddon as manager.— MLB (@MLB) October 16, 2019
He returns to the organization after spending his first 31 seasons with the club. pic.twitter.com/35KK1E6mqe
Maddon’s return brings with it a great deal of excitement for the Angels organization, who have been blessed with a generational talent in Mike Trout but simply cannot seem to put together a quality season. Since Trout’s debut season in 2011, the Halos have only made the playoffs once, when they were swept out of the American League Divisional Series by the Kansas City Royals in 2014. After another failed season with Brad Ausmus at the helm in 2019, it appears that the organization is going all-in on taking advantage of Trout and Japanese phenom Shohei Ohtani.
Whether or not Joe Maddon will make a difference back in L.A. will depend on how receptive the team is to his often unorthodox approaches and whether or not the front office is able to supply him with the pieces he needs to work his magic. If anything, he is a welcome refreshment from the stale styles of former managers Mike Scioscia and Brad Ausmus.
More on managers
Now that Maddon his signed on with the Angels, seven teams now remain with managerial vacancies: San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres, Pittsburgh Pirates, Kansas City Royals, New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies and Cubs. Jim Bowden takes a look at the best fits for each respective team in this article for The Athletic. He starts off on a high note, with Maddon being the best fit for Los Angeles in his opinion, but what about the rest of the teams?
His list mentions a lot of familiar names, including David Ross who fits with the Cubs, Gabe Kapler and the Giants, Joe Girardi with the Mets, Buck Showalter (or Dusty Baker) with the Phillies, and Mike Matheny with the Royals. Another name thrown in the mix is a blast from the past: Hensley Meulens, who might also fit in with the Giants. Additionally, Alex Cora is mentioned along with Mike Bell for the Pittsburgh Pirates position, and Eduardo Pérez is suggested for the San Diego Padres vacancy.
Vote for Niko Goodrum!
Niko Goodrum is up for the 2019 Heart and Hustle Award. You can vote for him here before the poll ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 20, 2019. Fan voting constitutes 5 percent of the total voting for the final award winner.
Can't spell "OK, go vote in the @MLBPAA #HeartAndHustle Award immediately" without Niko Goodrum. ➡️ https://t.co/y7LfW2bdar pic.twitter.com/86P6R11KVs— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) October 16, 2019
Do not forget to vote for the new team name for the Tigers’ New York-Penn League affiliate in Connecticut. You can learn more about the various monikers here.
3 Days left to VOTE for our new team name! Which locally tied & unique name is your favorite? Voting ends Fri, 10/18 at 11:59 pm!— Connecticut Tigers (@thecttigers) October 16, 2019
VOTE HERE https://t.co/fEtwh3NXBU
Norwich Golden Roses
Norwich Mill Mules
Norwich Salty Dogs
Norwich Sea Unicorns pic.twitter.com/d1QZXbrGgV
Rapping with Nick Ramirez
.@N_ram33 may have been drafted as a first baseman, but he transformed himself into one of team's most reliable bullpen pitchers. pic.twitter.com/rOEibJ0t6N— Detroit Tigers (@tigers) October 15, 2019
Comparing some of the greatest
Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer combined:— Max’s Sporting Studio (@MaxSportsStudio) October 17, 2019
5,698 career strikeouts (5,272 IP)
5,714 career strikeouts (5,386 IP)
- 2019 Tigers Review: Gordon Beckham’s season was largely forgettable. How the veteran infielder kept his career alive by playing for the worst team in baseball.
- Detroit Tigers TV ratings dropped another 15 percent in 2019. Ratings have declined over 75 percent in just six years.
Around the horn
Major League Baseball is now allowing investment funds to take minority stakes in multiple clubs, a move that lets the league capitalize on sky-high team valuations. Notes from the Perfect Game amateur World Championship. The big payoff never came for the Pittsburgh Pirates four seasons after their last playoff appearance. “Did MLB de-juice the ball right before the playoffs?” asks FiveThirtyEight. The origins of Mad Max: An oral history of Max Scherzer’s college days. The Padres are giving Ron Washington a second interview.
Baseball is awesome: Kinesiology edition
THREAD: Blessing the timeline today with a couple different views/angles of some pretty ELITE pitching mechanics. A casual 93 mph from an arm that has been up to 98+mph. Lots of things to enjoy about the way this athlete moves.— Anthony Brady MS, CSCS (@BaseballFreak_9) October 16, 2019
lower half/lead leg from this angle pic.twitter.com/nZo8SXd3zt