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Snake Bytes, 10/17: Ice-cream with Collmenter!

The Championship Series start, one of our minor-league managers may be on the move, and... yeah, ice-cream with Collmenter.

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Team news

[Global Post] Arizona Diamondbacks - TeamReport - The Arizona Diamondbacks made great strides in the first full season under the direction of Tony La Russa, Dave Stewart, De Jon Watson and Chip Hale, and they believe better execution will lead to more improvement in 2016. "Obviously it's work in progress," manager Hale said. "I think we made some progress this year. We learned a lot about our club."

Reno Aces' manager Phil Nevin appears to be a man in demand this winter, and one wonders how long he will remain with our triple-A affiliate. The first round of the playoffs is barely completed, and Nevin has already talked to the Nationals, spoken to his long-time team in San Diego, and been to two interviews for the manager's post with the Marlins. He is also reported to be on the radar for the open Seattle spot, and Tony La Russa recently called Nevin "major-league ready" as a manager. Seems the major-leagues concur.

[Chicago Tribune] Tim Wilken departs Cubs - Tim Wilken is leaving the Chicago Cubs to join the front office of the Arizona Diamondbacks, a source confirmed late Friday night. Wilken, a special assistant to the president and general manager with the Cubs since August of 2012, was a finalist for the Diamondbacks' amateur scouting director's position last fall. Wilken joined the Cubs in December of 2005 as the director of amateur and professional scouting and was responsible in the signing of Andrew Cashner, Darwin Barney, Jeff Samardzija, Josh Donaldson, Josh Harrison, D.J. LeMahieu and Javier Baez.

[Cronkite News] Arizona Diamondbacks executive battles low attendance at Chase Field through marketing efforts, concourse changes - Rossini has embraced the tough task of converting young fans whose parents may have grown up elsewhere and worked to cultivate new (and ideally lifelong) Diamondbacks fans. Many Valley residents grew up rooting for teams in Chicago, Los Angeles or San Francisco. That’s a reality that we’re still dealing with," Rossini said. "We’re starting to have that generation turn where people are being born in Phoenix, and we’re going to be the baseball team that they know and love."

[East Valley Tribune] D-backs pitcher Collmenter to appear at Mesa Culver’s restaurant - Josh Collmenter, is scheduled to be at the Culver’s, at 1841 S. Greenfield Road in Mesa, on Wednesday, Oct. 21. Collmenter will be at the restaurant from 6-8 p.m. as part of a fundraiser for the Phoenix Children’s Hospital. A sundae he created will be sold for $2 all day Wednesday at the Greenfield Road Culver’s and the Culver’s at 1909 S. Country Club Drive. All the money from those sundaes goes to the hospital. Mm-mmm.... Ice-cream...

Around baseball

Conflicting reports from our sibling sites on last night's game, kicking off the Championship Series. Bluebird Banter says, "The offensive powerhouse Blue Jays must have left their bats in Toronto. Marco Estrada had a decent performance, but it is tough to win when your team gets shutout. On the bright side, David Price starts tomorrow." Unsurprisingly, Royals Review was much happier: "Edinson Volquez, pitching in the biggest game of his career, was splendid in the American League Championship Series opener. His offense backed him for enough run support in a 5-0 win for the defending league champion Royals."

[AP] Baseball playoffs' TV viewership up 22 percent - The baseball playoffs' television viewership is up 22 percent from last year so far in the U.S. Major League Baseball said Friday that the average audience of more than 4.2 million is the highest since 2010. With the large markets of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, the two NL Division Series averaged 5.4 million viewers on TBS, up 52 percent from the ALDS last year on the network when the four teams were the Royals, Angels, Orioles and Tigers.

[] Zack Greinke to opt out of Dodgers contract, command a big deal - "Zack Greinke will opt out of a contract that has $71 million over three years remaining, according to sources, and one GM suggested he should get multiple offers for $125 million over five years, at a minimum, with the likely winning bid at about $150 million over five years, or perhaps even more." Good. Either the Dodgers' rotation will become Kershaw and the four dwarfs, or they'll overpay for a pitcher on the wrong side of 30.

[Stadium Journey]  2015 MLB Ballpark Experience Rankings - "We've reevaluated every single ballpark in MLB during the 2015 season and come up with our rankings of the best overall fan experience. We rate each stadium using our FANFARE scale which includes assessing the food and beverage in the ballpark, the overall atmosphere, the neighborhood where the stadium is located, the fans, the access (which includes parking, traffic, restrooms, and handicap accessibility), the overall return on investment, and any special or unique features." Chase Field came in at a thoroughly respectable sixth of 30.

[Baseball America] Spencer Trygg: My Year Without Baseball - After pitching at Cal Lutheran, righthander Spencer Trygg signed with the Angels as a nondrafted free agent in 2013 and pitched two seasons in the organization and compiled a 5.69 ERA before being released in December, 2014. Trygg did not pitch in organized ball in 2015 and he shares his story out being out of the game this year.

[Golf Digest] The Padres opt for smaller balls - "The San Diego Padres and Callaway are setting up a nine-hole golf course at Petco Park next month. Dubbed "The Links at Petco Park," the course will be open from Nov. 6-8 with tee times starting at $100 for a twosome and $200 for a foursome." Oh, the jokes just write themselves, don't they? I'll start: The good thing will be, it's gonna be almost impossible to hit the ball out of bounds...