Quick Hits: Maddon, Molina, Hernandez, Gilbert

After being fired as the Angels manager in June, Joe Maddon would like to return to baseball, but “right now I need to get tired of what I’m doing in order to want to do something else,” Maddon told Marc Topkin of The Tampa Bay Times.  The veteran skipper is enjoying a rare “summer vacation” of sorts, and would only be interested in a managerial or advisory job with a team that had a “strong balance between the old and the new” approaches to the game, and not too tilted in favor of analytics.

It seems clear that Maddon didn’t feel this balance existed in Anaheim.  In general, Maddon felt the Angels’ “infrastructure needs to be improved….It’s the non-sexy stuff that has to get better. It’s not just bright, shiny objects — they have that.  They need to do the infrastructure better in order to get to where we had been in the past.”  Maddon also implied that the front office tried to have too much of an influence on baseball decisions, thus trying to turn the manager into a “middle man” rather than an actual leader in the clubhouse.

It’s at the point where some GM should really just put a uniform on and go down to the dugout, or their main analytical membrane, he should go down to the dugout….And what happens is when the performance isn’t what they think it should be, it’s never about the acquisitional process,” Maddon said.  “It’s always about the inability of coaches and managers to get the best out of a player.  And that’s where this tremendous disconnect is formed.”

More from around the baseball world…

  • The Cardinals placed Yadier Molina on the restricted list today, and called up catcher Ivan Herrera from Triple-A to take Molina’s place on the active roster.  Molina is away for “business reasons” in Puerto Rico, Cards president of baseball operations John Mozeliak told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and other reporters, and the longtime catcher is expected to return to the Cardinals on Monday.  Goold notes that the pro basketball team Molina owns is playing in the finals of the Baloncesto Superior Nacional championship, Puerto Rico’s top league.  While seemingly an unusual reason to take time off during the season, Molina’s absence probably amounts to one game at most, as the catcher played on Friday and wouldn’t have played in both weekend games against the Diamondbacks.
  • X-rays were negative on Teoscar Hernandez’s left foot after the Blue Jays outfielder fouled a ball off his foot in the eighth inning of today’s 5-2 win over the Yankees.  Hernandez was replaced in right field for the bottom half of the eighth inning.  While it appears as though Hernandez has avoided any serious injury, it seems likely that he’ll miss Sunday’s game, thus leaving the Jays even more shorthanded in the outfield.  George Springer has been limited to DH duty since returning from the injured list, and Springer has also missed the last two games due to a sore right knee after a wayward foul ball of his own on Thursday.  While Toronto has outfield depth on the bench, the lineup would be hurt if both Hernandez and Springer each have to miss more time.
  • Drew Gilbert’s first pro season is already over due to a dislocation in his right elbow, the Astros announced.  (Hat tip to Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle.)  Gilbert hasn’t played since August 13, when he suffered a forearm contusion after a collision with the outfield wall in a game for the Astros’ A-ball affiliate.  However, according to the team, a further medical exam revealed that Gilbert “had sustained a dislocated right elbow that spontaneously went back into place before he was examined.”  The 21-year-old Gilbert was the 28th overall pick of the 2022 draft, and MLB Pipeline already ranks the University of Tennessee product as the second-best prospect in the Astros’ farm system.

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