This could be the week in which we get an answer to one of the most important questions for the Braves this offseason: Who will be the manager going forward? According to Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball, the Braves have it down to three candidates. Those three men are Brian Snitker, Bud Black, and Ron Washington (seriously). However, Ken Rosenthal has said that Black has a “legitimate shot” at getting the job, so I’d tab him as the favorite.
In case you may have missed the news last Sunday, Jim Johnson will be staying with the Braves after signing a two-year deal. Brian Grosnick of Baseball Prospectus decided to take a moment to analyze the move for the Braves.
He was very bad in 2014–that 7.09 ERA and nearly six walks per nine innings weren’t excusable–but it was a blip, not the performance level he’s had before or since.
This season was a blip too, but in the other direction. Johnson was always–fairly or not–derided for having a low strikeout rate compared to other high-leverage relievers. In 2016, his age-33 season, he spiked his strikeouts per nine by more thanthree strikeouts over his career mark. His 9.5 strikeouts per nine were well above anything he’d done before, and provided a final complement to his ability to induce ground-ball contact.
Meanwhile, the crew over at Tomahawk Take decided to take a trip to the recent past and take a look at how things shook out for Brooks Conrad. We all remember him for his exploits during the 2010 season, but how did the rest of Conrad’s career pan out? Plus, anytime that we can get an opportunity to post this video, we should take it.
The Toronto Blue Jays are heading to the ALCS for the second consecutive year, and this time they brought out the brooms in order to make it there. Sunday night’s game against the Rangers eventually went to extra innings, with the decisive play coming in the 10th inning. Russell Martin hit a grounder to third that seemed like a likely double play ball for the Rangers. They got the out at second, but Toronto villain Rougned Odor made an errant throw to first, and Josh Donaldson (who was on second base when this play began) hustled around third once the throw went awry and made a mad dash home. He made it home safely and ensured that the Canadians would be having a happy Thanksgiving.
In three separate innings, the Dodgers had the bases loaded in Game 2 against the Nationals. The Dodgers proceeded to go 0-6 with the bases loaded, and that ended up costing them. Instead of having plenty of runs to work with, they only had two. That wouldn’t nearly be enough, because Jose Lobaton’s three-run bomb off of Rich Hill in the fourth inning put the Nationals ahead for good.