Inside Baseball MLB Notes: Showalter very likely to be replaced in Baltimore

Taking our weekly trip around the majors ...

 
Arizona Diamondbacks
— Patrick Corbin is setting up his free agency nicely with a big year. Look for the Yankees to be involved …
— The struggles in the pen continue …
— Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic had a terrific story with Astros MVP candidate Alex Bregman, who says he was “pissed” he wasn’t the D-Backs’ No. 1 pick. That honor went to Dansby Swanson, who they traded soon after. One thing to note: Bregman is from Albuquerque, N.M., which would make the D-Backs his (sorta) hometown team …
— Piecoro also has the story of the D-Backs players insisting they aren’t giving up.

RELATED: Braves sign Tyler Flowers to 2019 extension with 2019 option
 
Atlanta Braves
— The Braves have gotten a surprising season from Johan Camargo at third base and an improved one from Dansby Swanson at short (though one or two folks still have some reservations about whether he’s the long-term answer). But Manny Machado could be a fit for them. Machado presumably wouldn’t mind Atlanta which is as realistically close to his Miami home as he can get (the Marlins and Rays won’t be spending $300 million, we can assume). The big question of course is whether the Braves would spend that kind of money, either …
— Charlie Culberson, who came in that trade with much bigger names for Matt Kemp, wound up being a key player in the Braves’ run, and he has 12 home runs (six against the rival Nats) …
— As mentioned here last week, banned former GM John Coppolella made a big contribution to this team. That is evident every single week …
— A Braves person suggested they didn’t give up much in the way of prospects for Kevin Gausman, and that may turn out to be the case. But the Orioles made them take the $12 million on Darren O’Day’s contract and received more international money …
— Braves pitchers walked 26 in a recent 27-inning period, as Mark Bowman of MLB.com pointed out (that sounds like a seasonal total for Greg Maddux) …
— The Braves’ bullpen ERA is 5.67 in September (via David Schoenfield, ESPN), with 49 walks and 46 strikeouts …
— They could become the first team since the 2001 Braves to make the playoffs while posting a losing mark at home. That Braves team was 40-42 at Turner Field. This one is 39-38 at SunTrust …
— The reason they may get in is their dominance over the second division teams in their division; they are 26-9 vs. the Mets and Marlins.


 
Baltimore Orioles
— There’s no evidence that either GM Dan Duquette or manager Buck Showalter has been told their fate. But word around the game is that Showalter is very likely to be replaced, while the Duquette call could go either way. Overall, both did a nice job, though this is not the finish they envisioned (if it’s a finish) …
— The Orioles, in a twist, have the most international money to spend. They are seemingly a favorite for Cuban star Victor Victor Mesa. It was reported awhile back they were signing him, but all concerned said that report was not true. It may turn out to be true, however …
— Victor Victor has a brother who’s coming, too: Victor Jr. Word is Victor Victor is twice the player …
— Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic is correct. Word is Cal Ripken Jr. isn’t interested in managing but might be interested in a front office role. While he did once interview for a Nats managerial job (the one that went to Matt Williams, which seemed like a fait accompli at the time) he’d prefer executive work. The Orioles haven’t said what jobs will be open …
— The Orioles tied their franchise record with their 107th defeat. Is the 1988 team spared by the 2018 club's new loss record, wonders Eduardo Encina of the Baltimore Sun.
 
Boston Red Sox
— Steven Wright looks like a candidate for a key bullpen role. His agent Steve Rath joked to him after his first save that he “only needs 599 more for 600.” …
— The guess here is that their bullpen may not be the problem spot folks are envisioning. Nathan Eovaldi gives them another relief option. And manager Alex Cora said he could use closer Craig Kimbrel before the ninth inning (though that hasn't always worked out in Boston) …
— Of course David Price wants to stay with the Red Sox. And of course he won’t opt out, not with $127 million and four years to go …
— There’s been speculation Christian Vazquez could hit the trading block after a rough offensive season followed his $13.5-million, three-year extension. The guess here is that the market wouldn’t be great due to the big offensive drop off …
— Dany Knobler of Bleacher Report has a good, in-depth look at the problem of pitchers been struck in the head by line drives. The lead of the story is about ex-Red Sox pitcher Bryce Florie whose career was curtailed by a liner to the head. (Coincidentally, I was covering that day at Fenway. Was horrific even to watch it)
 
Chicago Cubs
— The loss of Brandon Morrow is a major blow to the Cubs, especially with Pedro Strop also out …
— Joe Maddon takes a lot of hits. But he shouldn’t be hit for Pedro Strop batting (and injuring his hamstring). That would have been tough to predict …
— Willson Contreras was contrite after standing and watching a drive to center field that wound up hitting the wall rather than going over it. Maddon said there’d be a talk, and there obviously was one …
— Kyle Schwarber and Tommy LaStella are battling back issues. This is a very deep team — though Schwarber is a proven playoff performer and LaStella is an excellent pinch hitter (and practical joker par excellence) …
— The Cubs are showing fortitude again by hanging on in one of baseball’s stronger divisions. The NL Central may have three playoff teams (as of today they do), and no one is terrible.
 
Chicago White Sox
— The White Sox have struck out 1,448 times which is not only the most in baseball but also a franchise record, as Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times writes …
— They are 0-7 at Progressive Field, which isn’t exactly progress (sorry about the bad pun) …
— Jose Abreu is hospitalized with an infection in his thigh. He had missed time with a groin injury earlier …
— Daniel Palka is still hitting long balls.

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Cincinnati Reds
— While the Reds are looking around, there are folks that believe that interim manager Jim Riggleman has a good chance to keep the manager’s job. He has fans in the Reds front office, and one in the owner's box in Bob Castellini. John Farrell, currently working as a Reds scout, is expected to be among those under consideration …
— Nick Senzel is working out as an outfielder, so it appears the Reds plan to use him in that capacity next year. That makes sense since they have Eugenio Suarez at third base and Scooter Gennett at second base …
— Gennett, meanwhile, is battling for the batting title. He’s made it clear he wants to stay in Cincinnati long-term, but the price would appear to be rising …
— They love what they saw from Jesse Winker before he went down with injury, so that might be two-thirds of their outfield ….
— Billy Hamilton’s continuing on-base issues could mean he’s a non-tender candidate. Though Castellini does love him …
— The Reds do love Matt Harvey, not just Castellini, and they are expected to make a real effort to sign him back …
— Luis Castillo is coming on now. He’s very talented, and the Reds need to be able to count on him …
— Reds people seem to love the 98-mph-throwing Sal Romano in the bullpen.
 
Cleveland Indians
— Trevor Bauer could join the bullpen for the playoffs, Indians people say. That would give them quite a powerful bullpen at least on paper, with also Cody Allen, Andrew Miller and Brad Hand. Meanwhile, the Indians’ regular season has been quite a disappointment. While they are 17 games over, their four division rivals are well more than 100 games under .500, meaning they had the easiest schedule in baseball (you know that without even looking) …
— Hard to believe, but the Indians haven’t won a series of three or more games against a winning team all year. (Of course, they mostly play losers) …
— The Indians are the fourth team with three 200-strikeout pitchers. Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer and Carlos Carrasco helped Cleveland join the 1967 Twins (Dean Chance, Jim Kaat, Dave Boswell), the 1969 Astros (Larry Dierker, Ty Griffin, Don Wilson) and 2013 Tigers (Anibal Sanchez, Justin Verlander, Max Scherzer (via Christopher Kamka). If anyone else knew that, go to the head of the class.


 
Colorado Rockies
— Nice story on a day in the life of Bud Black, NL Manager of the Year candidate, who has the Rockies in decent position despite a run differential that’s about break even. Nice job, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post
— Black has done a great job keeping the Rockies in it despite being out-manned. With their run differential of negative five (-6) it’s hard to believe they are right up there with the Dodgers (they're currently 2.5 games back). That's in part because Wade Davis has 40 saves, so that looks like a very good signing …
— Black has moved away from Bryan Shaw and Jake McGee and more toward kids like Scott Oberg lately (also via Saunders). But the biggest break in their playoff push is likely the one that wasn't; Trevor Story was found to have no structural damage. He is one of the best speed/power combos in the game. They need him if they are going to catch the Dodgers.

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Detroit Tigers
— Shane Greene has turned into a pretty good reliever, posting 30 saves for a team that didn’t win very many games …
— Michael Fulmer had knee surgery, as injuries continue to hamper the very fine young pitcher (the same could be said for the man he was traded for, Yoenis Cespedes) …
— Matthew Boyd and his wife donated $100,000 to girls rescued from sex trafficking, via Lynn Henning of the Detroit News. Bravo.
 
Houston Astros
— Dallas Keuchel is back pitching like an ace, which makes the Astros even tough. Over his last 14 starts, he’s 7-2 with a 2.82 ERA ….
— As much as we didn’t like the Roberto Osuna signing, he is now up to 18 saves. It’s an unfortunate storyline …
— Tough call for the Astros to pare their pitching ranks for the playoffs. They have 15 great or good pitchers, as MLB Network pointed out (the four starters plus Lance McCullers, Hector Rondon, Chris Devenski, Josh James, Will Harris, Ryan Pressly, Brad Peacock, Collin McHugh, Roberto Osuna, Tony Sipp, Joe Smith). Tough calls there.
   
Kansas City Royals
— The Royals are expected to cut their payroll by $30 million to $35 million, from $120 million to $85 million to $90 …
— They know they need to improve their bullpen, though they could do some of that from within. They once turned so-so starter Wade Davis plus two smallish guys — Greg Holland and Kelvin Herrera — into the best bullpen in the game …
— They are hoping Ned Yost agrees to come back for one more year but they haven’t had that conversation yet (at least not as of Tuesday) …
— Ryan O’Hearn continues to show big power …
— Draftee Daniel Lynch a lefty from the University of Virginia, is off to a huge start. Keith Law of ESPN named him one of the most impressive from the June draft so far …
— They are in decent shape in terms of young pitchers after making their top four draftees pitchers (Jackson Kowar, Brady Singer and Kris Bubic are the others). They got some good ones too …
— They are as deep as anyone with catching depth in the minors. M.J. Melendez looks like a potential star.


 
Los Angeles Angels
— Stat seen: How great has Mike Trout been this season? He has a 199 OPS plus and has a chance to become the first American League player since Frank Thomas in 1994 to post an OPS plus of 200 or better (Thomas was 212) …
— Trout has a 63.5 WAR in his age 26 season Ty Cobb had a 63.4 WAR through his age-26 season (though I’m not sure how they figured out his defensive numbers) and Mickey Mantle 61.4. (ditto on the defense) In any case, that shows how big a star Trout is …
— Congratulations to Halley Dawson, who threw out the first ball in all 30 ballparks, completing her tour at Angels stadium. The little girl has robotic hands but she managed to do it. Fantastic! …
— Shohei Ohtani has the best slugging percentage since Aug. 1 at .743 (via Keith Costas, MLB Network) …
— Kole Calhoun broke a 0-for-25 streak with a big home run. He’s a great defender, but he’s had some bad slumps this year.
 
Los Angeles Dodgers
— The Dodgers are up to plus-150 in run differential, yet they are still fighting for one of the last few playoff spots …
— Clayton Kershaw is still seen as likely to opt out, with $65 million and two years to go, barring another setback with his back. “As long as he’s healthy, 100 percent he’ll opt out,” one rival agent predicts. And another suggests that the best way to work things out, assuming Kershaw prefers to stay (that’s the general and sensible assumption), is to extend Kershaw for a year or two at his sport-best salary …
— The playoff rotation is expected to be Kershaw, Rich Hill ,Walker Buehler and perhaps Hyun-Jin Ryu …
— Manager Dave Roberts has a tough job keeping so many accomplished position players happy, and it’s an accomplishment that nothing negative has hit the press yet …
— Brian Dozier, one of the best power-hitting second baseman ever, is among those stars mostly on the Dodgers bench. Dozier may have to alter his expectations following a rough year. Going into the year, he was looking at a contract that could have paid him as much as $20 million a year. Anyway, someone may get a bargain this winter …
— Justin Turner (.389, .483) leads in batting average and on-base percentage since Aug. 1 …
— Turner suffered a scare when he was hit in the left hand …
— Yasiel Puig is on fire, which could be a big thing (if they make the postseason) …
— Minor leaguer Tim Locastro has been hit by pitch 154 times. “I’m a reincarnated Hughie Jennings,” Locastro told Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register …
— The Dodgers probably should have run away in the NL West. But a .192 batting average with runners in scoring position and two outs and other evidence of “unclutch” performances conspired to keep the race close …
— Former No. 1 pick Gavin Lux looks like he’s going to be a star.

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Miami Marlins
— Great story with Marlins reporter Jessica Blaylock about manager Don Mattingly meeting with a fan who got to meet him as a sick child 30 years ago at Fenway Park. The fellow now has a family of his own, and even named his daughter Matttingly. Beautiful story. Andre Fernandez of The Athletic wrote on this wonderful subject
— Mattingly spoke out against September rules after the Marlins and Phillies used 15 pitchers in a recent game. It was reported to have been the only non-DH game since 1900 in which no one both pitched and hit (that’s how fast the pitchers went out). Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald has the details
— Peter O’Brien is showing the big power folks always knew he had …
— The Marlins continued their dispute with Andy Slater, the excellent South Florida radio person who lost his job after he says the Marlins complained about his coverage of the team (including flying down to the British Virgin Islands to investigate their alleged office down there). Marlins spokesman Jason Latimer says he didn’t ask for Slater to be fired (but they obviously don’t want him around, as he was denied a credential to cover even one game).


 
Milwaukee Brewers
— Christian Yelich looks a lot better on a better team and in a better hitters park. But most folks suspected he’d be a star. All three of the ex-Marlins outfield stars may be in the playoffs, with also Giancarlo Stanton and Marcell Ozuna. And Yelich looks a lot like a former Brewers outfield MVP. Take a look at these numbers: Ryan Braun (’11): 33 HR, 111 RBI, 109 runs, 33 SB, .332/.397/.597/.994 OPS/166 OPS+ / Christian Yelich (’18 ): 31 HR, 93 RBI, 102 runs, 20 SB, .317/.384/.568/.952 OPS/151 OPS +
— Yelich became the third Brewer to join the 30-20 club, as Mike Vassallo, stat guru of the Brewers p.r. department relayed. The others were Ryan Braun (three times) and Tommy Harper (1970). Robert Murray of The Athletic has more on the greatness of "Mr. Everything."
— Lorenzo Cain (intercostal) and Travis Shaw (knee) have injury concerns …
— Josh Hader recorded 13 straight outs via strikeout …
— Chase Anderson has a 4.92 ERA at home, 2.74 on the road, via Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel …
— Wade Miley has had a big second half, which should help his free agency prospects.

RELATED: Forget the injuries, Joe Mauer has been worth it
 
Minnesota Twins
— Joe Mauer told Lavelle Neal of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune he may retire after the year, and it sounded like he’s leaning that way(link). But people around the team believe Mauer may want to consider the decision into the offseason, to give himself some distance and perspective. But a couple factors may weigh on him: 1) he had another concussion this year, one that kept him out 25 games, and 2) it takes him longer to prepare for games now, at 35 …
— Mauer, however was 28-for-75, as Dustin Morse, p.r. person extraordinaire for the Twins, pointed out …
— The biggest order of business will be sorting out a nucleus that had a rough year. Jose Berrios had a nice year, as did Eddie Rosario, and Byron Buxton will certainly remain in the exalted group despite a wasted year. But the Twins may have something to think about with the rest of the nucleus, which includes Miguel Sano, Max Kepler and Jorge Polanco …
— Buxton’s camp wasn’t happy that the Twins didn’t give him a September call up, which winds up saving the team a year by pushing back his free agency, as agent B.B. Abbott told Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic
— Willians Astudillo has become a nice story. He sees a league-low 2.2 pitches per plate appearance …
— The Twins’ system is moving up fast. Alex Kiriloff and Royce Lewis were particularly impressive for Class-A Fort Myers. They are future stars.


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 New York Mets
— David Wright was on a Hall of Fame track when he started to suffer debilitating injuries that eventually curtailed his career. But none of this bad luck diminishes him in the eyes of Mets fans, who quickly bought up every ticket for his finale. That is only fitting; Wright is as good a person as he was a player …
— The injuries killed a brilliant career. But the Mets will recover 80 percent of the pay via insurance, which is an unusual call for a position player (but it turns out, a wise one). They also are the beneficiary of his popularity by virtue of the last-game sellout …
— Some Mets people don’t mind the idea of taking a look at free agent center fielder A.J. Pollock. But with his injury history he might be a tough sell for a team that’s been so hampered by injuries over the past few years (though it should be noted that they have been healthier than ever in the second half) …
— Michael Conforto’s second half performance indicates he missed spring training and probably wasn’t completely ready early this season. His OPS is 200 points higher in the second half …
— Travis d’Arnaud sounds like a candidate to be non-tendered …
— A high-ranking Mets person expressed some regret about failing to sign one particular free agent over the past few years, and it’d be hard to guess who it is? Ben Zobrist …
— Some Mets people wouldn’t be opposed to a change in the shift rule after watching it kill Jay Bruce this year. How many times can someone ground out to right field? Meanwhile, despite some doubts around here and elsewhere, the Mets may have made the right all to keep all four of their great pitchers. They are playing much better in the second half …
— While Jays president Mark Shapiro is on the Mets’ list, as pointed out here, he probably isn’t a perfect fit since 1) he’s already a president, 2) he allegedly makes close to $4M a year 3) Mets owner Fred Wilpon is said to be more inclined to favor a less analytically-oriented person generally. Add to that the fact that the Mets not only have a three-headed GM (John Ricco, Omar Minaya and J.P. Ricciardi), they have a three-headed ownership group (also Jeff Wilpon and Saul Katz). Word is last time Fred made the call for Sandy Alderson. So it’s possible he may have the tie-breaking call.


New York Yankees
— There’s a controversy over whether the Yankees should play Gary Sanchez in the Wild Card game. He won’t say it but word is that generally speaking Aaron Boone has some concerns. That shouldn’t be a shock since his father is Bob Boone, one of the better defensive catchers over the past few decades …
— The return of Aaron Judge is obviously a huge positive, and he said he felt comfortable right away … 
— The Yankees needed Andrew McCutchen, which explains the overpay. And at this point, it’s uncertain how strong Aaron Judge will be upon his return. Meanwhile, if you thought Luke Voit was a trade throw-in, he's been some throw-in: he's had a 1.164 OPS over his last 22 games …
— Justus Sheffield is up for the Yankees as they are having more bullpen issues than one might have predicted. Conor Foley of the Scranton Times-Tribune first reported the call up …
— Marc Carig of The Athletic had a nice story about Rookie of the Year candidate Miguel Andujar …
— Molly O’Neill, the New York Times’ great food writer and sister of Paul, has a GoFundme page. Best wishes to her.
 
Oakland Athletics
— Mike Fiers seems like the likely Wild Card starter, which set him up against Giancarlo Stanton, with whom he’s had bad blood. We previously wrote about how Stanton didn’t want him to come in trade to the Marlins …
— Julian McWilliam of The Athletic had a nice story in the rise of multi-talented Ramon Laureano.

RELATED: Execs think Phillies could land Machado AND Harper
 
Philadelphia Phillies
— GM Matt Klentak didn’t completely dismiss the idea that the Phillies may have a chemistry issue following their awful last five weeks (via Jim Salisbury, Comcast Philly) …
— Another explanation is that their hitting and fielding weren’t good enough …
— Among the team's four deadline pickups, Wilson Ramos has done the best, with a 1.024 OPS for Philly …
— Phillies people are frustrated. One said to me: “The only team the Mets can beat is us.” …
— Rhys Hoskins has hired Scott Boras to represent him, as Jim Salisbury first reported …
— Jake Arrieta offered a rather harsh assessment of his own first-year performance in Philly
— Class act: Ex-Phillies manager Charlie Manuel presented retiring David Wright with the “NYM” from the Phillies scoreboard.


 
Pittsburgh Pirates
— Trevor Williams is showing signs of becoming a star. Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic wrote a story on him and the other Trevor Williams, too. Yes, there are two ...
— Chad Kuhl just had elbow surgery, which is a disappointing setback…
— Biertempfel also has a story on how Jordy Mercer is dealing with his demotion
— Kyle Crick is this year’s set-up man, last year it was Tony Watson. If you know the reference, you passed 11th grade science.

RELATED: Interim Shildt may be the right man to manage Cardinals full-time | Friends say Joe Girardi wanted Cardinals job badly
 
St. Louis Cardinals
— Nolan Gorman, their first round choice, is a off to a nice start in the minors. Keith Law of ESPN cited Gorman as one of the two most impressive draftees to this point) …
— Memphis once again won the Pacific Coast League. Great job again by Stubby Clapp. It feels a bit like Clapp was passed over (though it’s hard to argue with the results of Mike Shildt, who got a three-year extension). One quibble: Memphis really isn’t on the Pacific coast …
— Kolten Wong is unhappy the Rays haven’t called up his brother Keon. He says the Rays are a “bad organization,” that “doesn’t give deserving young players a chance.” Players aren’t too thrilled with the Rays’ emphasis on money saving, I’ve found, but it’s hard to argue with their success at the moment …
— How great has Jack Flaherty look? So good the Cardinals are lining things up so he can start a Wild Card game, Mark Saxon of The Athletic reports
— The Cardinals are the only NL team that hasn’t lost at SunTrust.


 
San Diego Padres
— Francisco Mejia was the fifth youngest with a walk-off grand slam, A.J. Cassavell of MLB.com reported. The top four: Jeff Francoeur, Giancarlo Stanton, Ryan Zimmerman and Everth Cabrera …
— Cassavell can’t believe 29 teams passed on Franmil Reyes when they had a chance to acquire him for “peanuts.”
 
San Francisco Giants
— There are rumors of possible front office changes, and they may include GM Bobby Evans, as Bob Nightengale of USA Today reported …
— Hunter Pence hasn’t said whether he plans to play again next year. But Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle suggests that Pence is hinting that he does, behind the scenes at least. It doesn’t appear that it will be with the Giants, though they have a tradition of keeping their championship stars. Pence, incidentally, has shown some positive signs lately through his play …
— Jon Taylor of Sports Illustrated had a story on the Giants exiting their championship phase
— Chris Shaw is showing some positive signs since his call up.
 
Seattle Mariners
— GM Jerry Dipoto suggested he was likely to try to re-sign accomplished DH Nelson Cruz, who has hit as many home runs as anyone in recent years.


 
Tampa Bay Rays
— C.J. Cron has 27 home runs as less than a full-time player, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times points out …
— Kolten Wong isn’t happy his brother Kean didn’t get the promotion he believes he deserved (see more in our Cardinals notes just above). Kean hit .282 with nine homers and 50 RBI …
— The Rays are 21-5 since Aug. 19. …
— Unbelievably, they are still alive. So hat’s off to them …
— And if they were in the AL Central, they would have won it.


Texas Rangers
—Is Jeff Banister on the hot seat? And should he be? Kevin Sherrington of the Dallas Morning News asks these questions
— With one more year of rebuild, the lean seems to be to keep Banister. Here was our managers in question story from a few weeks back
— Jurickson Profar is finally showing that potential that once made him the No. 1 overall prospect in the game …
— By all accounts, Adrian Beltre is still undecided about next year, as Evan Grant wrote …
— Joey Gallo is closing in on 200 strikeouts again.

RELATED: Blue Jays, Gibbons ready to part ways | Donaldson's agent contradicts client in 'fake' release
 
Toronto Blue Jays
— John Gibbons, very likely in his last days as Jays manager, declared that the Jays are “aren't dead yet,” (via Hazel Mae) …
— The Jays are having a scouting overhaul, and let got Dan Evans and Bryan Lambe, who should have little trouble getting jobs (though it’s hard to tell these days, when cameras and computers are taking the place of people and know how) … 

— Thomas Pannone drew a big crowd of home friends when he pitched at Yankee Stadium. “Definitely over 50,” the Rhode Island product said. And he pitched the Jays to a 3-2 win over the Yankees. Nice.

RELATED: Which superstar will win the offseason? Execs predict
 
Washington Nationals
— It would be a shocker if the Nats don’t have a legit shot at re-signing Bryce Harper. Even though there were reservations expressed here by some execs who don’t know Harper, he is beloved by his own organization …
— Harper is coming on, and before it’s over could actually wind up with better numbers than Manny Machado …
— Harper has an .895 OPS and the competition with Manny Machado (.908) will be very interesting. Here was how our polled execs predicted that would go last week
— Juan Soto has a .933 OPS, which would put him near the top of NL leaderboard …
— The Nats have not quit, so give them credit for that … 
— Great job by assistant GM Bob Miller, who as Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic writes, put his 2001 Diamondbacks World Series ring up for auction to help pay for colleague Doug Harris’ leukemia treatments. Doug’s wife Lisa Harris started a GoFundMe page. The last bid on the auction was $10,500. The GoFundMe page was almost hallway to the $400,000 needed.

Jon Heyman is Fancred's baseball insider. He publishes his weekly Inside Baseball column each Thursday on the App and FancredSports.com. You can download the App here and interact with Jon by following him right here.

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