Team news (more or less)
[MLB.com] Dbacks' David Peralta talks about fatherhood - I've been telling my wife to wait for me to get home so I could feed her. I love doing that. Actually, that's the one thing Goldy taught me. Every night when the game is over, he told me I'd change as fast as I could so I could get home and take care of her, and it's true. I'm always texting my wife, 'Don't feed her, I'm on my way, I want to do it.' I ask my wife all the time, too, if I'm doing a good job and she always tells me that I am. It's really nice to hear that too, because I really want to be the best dad I can to Sofia
[AZ Central] Ex-Arizona Diamondbacks manager A.J. Hinch enjoying Astros success - When he’s been asked about the experience, Hinch has never claimed to have done everything right. After the Astros gave him a second managerial chance in the fall of 2014, Hinch mentioned his communication with players as something he could improve. He also talked about a need to better delegate with his coaching staff. “I wouldn’t give that experience away for anything,” Hinch said in December 2014. “If I hadn’t gone through those trials and things – and we had good things, too, it wasn’t just all bad in Arizona – I might not have got this job. So I went from somebody with no experience to somebody with a wide array of experience."
[MLB.com] Josh Byrnes close to A.J. Hinch, Dave Roberts - A lot has been said and written this week about the relationship between Dodgers manager Dave Roberts and Astros skipper A.J. Hinch, but at the nexus of it all is Josh Byrnes, the Dodgers' senior vice president of baseball operations. Byrnes moved Hinch out of the D-backs' front office to the dugout in 2009 in what turned out to be a highly controversial and unpopular move. When Byrnes went to the Padres as assistant general manager under Jed Hoyer -- later replacing Hoyer -- he took Hinch along with him. And when Astros GM Jeff Luhnow was looking for a manager in 2015, Hinch came with the highest recommendations from his buddy Byrnes.
[KNBR-AM] Baggarly on Matt Williams: ‘I wonder if he could be a fit for hitting coach’ - “On the hitting side, it’ll be really interesting to see what they do,” Baggarly said. “I’ve sort of wondered, this is just me speculating and I don’t have any hard evidence for this, but I’ve seen Matt Williams around the team a lot, especially in the last month or two of the season. Of course, he’s doing stuff for Comcast (NBC Sports Network), but I wonder if he could be a fit for hitting coach or be on the staff in some capacity. That might be an interesting way to go.”
[dbacks.com] D-backs head to offseason with moves to make - The D-backs surprised most of baseball this year, going 93-69 -- a complete 180 from 2016 -- and qualified for the postseason for the first time since '11. But for general manager Mike Hazen and his staff, the challenge to repeat that in '18 will make this offseason an interesting one. Hazen will continue to balance the desire to maximize the team's current window to contend with the desire to have sustainable success going forward. After winning the National League West in 2007 and '11, the team took an all-in approach and wound up bottoming out a few years later. That's something it is looking to avoid this time around.
[New York Times] After Barrage of Home Runs in the World Series, Juicy Theories as to Why - “I think the balls are juiced, 100 percent... Really powerful guys in this league, they’re going to get theirs,” Keuchel said. “Where you can tell the difference is the midrange guy, and he’s hitting 20-plus homers now. That’s not supposed to happen. And it’s happening.” Keuchel continued: “That’s what Major League Baseball wants. They want that exciting, two-home run lead, and then they come back and hit another home run, and everybody’s still watching. That’s what they want. That’s what they’re getting.”
[MLB.com] Chase Anderson, Brewers agree on two-year deal - Chase Anderson's best Major League season produced a pay day on Thursday, when the Brewers announced they'd agreed to a contract extension that could carry the right-hander all the way through his first year of free agency. It is a two-year deal that guarantees $11.75 million through 2019 with a pair of club options that would cover '20 (Anderson's final year of arbitration eligibility) and '21 (his first year of free agency). Including incentives for innings pitched, it could pay Anderson $31.35 million over the next four years.
[ESPN] Joe Girardi not returning as manager of New York Yankees - Joe Girardi will not be back next season as manager of the New York Yankees, the team announced Thursday. Girardi just completed the final season of a four-year, $16 million contract. Sources told ESPN's Buster Olney that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman recommended to owner Hal Steinbrenner that the team change managers. In an email to local media outlets, Girardi said: "With a heavy heart, I come to you because the Yankees have decided not to bring me back."
[SI] About That Prediction ... How the Astros Went From Baseball's Cellar to the 2017 World Series - Many people, including some within our own office, hated the cover, too. Even the club’s own hometown paper, the Houston Chronicle, called it “more of an attention-grabbing, perhaps even tongue-in-cheek projection than a prediction.” It was certainly a long shot, but so is everything in baseball. Vegas usually assigns a given season’s spring favorite less than a 20% chance of winning that fall’s World Series. What it wasn’t was empty clickbait, or a hot take. While we’re never above generating interesting conversations, my editors and I genuinely believed that what I saw down in Houston could result in a ring in three seasons.