I Wish All Off Days Were This Interesting

You know, I really didn’t plan on posting today, but there’s been so much random interesting stuff which has popped up today, that I can’t help but all dump it in here.

Let’s first get out of the way the Dodger news you no doubt already have read on everyone else’s site:  Manny Ramirez‘ MRI showed some inflammation in his hamstring, but Dylan Hernandez thinks that he’s likely to avoid the DL. And in the “stuff I’m linking from MOKM” section, Chad has his updated top 30 Dodger prospect list up, and notes that Kenley Jansen struck out all six batters he faced tonight.

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But it’s the non-Dodger related news that came down tonight which really blew my mind. In Arizona, the disaster that is the Diamondbacks got even uglier as a total housecleaning has begun. It wasn’t really a huge surprise to me that manager A.J. Hinch got fired (though as Jon notes, he had just 212 games to prove himself – and not one with Brandon Webb), as his hiring was somewhat questionable in the first place. Honestly, I thought he did a decent job with the team he was handled, though it’s hard to ignore the regression that all of the touted young talented, other than Justin Upton, have displayed.

What did surprise me was seeing GM Josh Byrnes get dismissed as well, and only partially because he still has five years left on his contract. Byrnes has had his share of iffy choices (the Eric Byrnes extension comes to mind), but he’s still a well-regarded executive who surely won’t be unemployed for long. If you’re asking me if I’d rather have Ned Colletti or Josh Byrnes as my GM… well, I wouldn’t have to think too long about it.

Buster Olney’s been tweeting up a storm about it:

Nothing less than stunning: The D-Backs have fired GM Josh Byrnes and manager A.J. Hinch. Byrnes will be unemployed for about 0.2 seconds. First, the Diamondbacks have him under contract for the next five years, and secondly, he is very, very, very highly regarded — and now some team can hire him as a consultant until he gets his next GM job, and it will be on the D-Backs’ dime.

From a rival high-ranking executive, about the D-Backs’ changes: “That is a brutal decision. They just tore apart one of the best front offices in baseball.”

Another GM on the D-Backs’ change at GM: “Absolutely crazy.”

Dodger hero Kirk Gibson takes over as the interim manager, and former big leaguer Jerry DiPoto is the interim general manager.  Jim Bowden tries to terrify us all by saying that Kim Ng and Logan White should be candidates for the job, and though he’s not wrong, his hilarious misuse of Twitter and the fact that he’s Jim Bowden means I won’t worry about it until I see from a more reliable source. And hey, all of a sudden the Dodger series in Phoenix starting tomorrow just got a little more interesting.

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The other interesting story developing tonight is that Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek broke his foot and will be out for 4-6 weeks. This is interesting only because Victor Martinez was already placed on the DL this week with a broken finger, meaning the Boston catchers are now Kevin Cash (acquired from Houston about six hours ago) and someone named Gustavo Molina, who’s played parts of three seasons with four teams.

Part of me wonders if the Red Sox are so desperate for catching that they’d be willing to give up something worthwhile for the overpaid, underperforming Russell Martin. I know they won’t, of course, and even if they did the Dodgers would have a catching shortage of their own, but I’ve soured so much on Martin that I’d be happy to see him just about anywhere else before seeing another arbitration raise. A man can dream, I suppose.

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