1) Minor League managerial moves
The Indians announced some managerial movement within the organization, prompted by Edwin Rodriguez (who managed Double-A Akron in 2013) being promoted to a special assistant role that will have him helping the Indians staff. Dave Wallace will move from High-A Carolina to the Akron job, while Scooter Tucker will move from Low-A Lake County to Carolina. The Indians hired former Tribe minor leaguer Mark Budzinski to be the new manager at Lake County.
The athletic trainer position with short-season Mahoning Valley is listed as "TBD," so dust off your resume!
2) Antonetti on Carlos Santana at 3B
Says Indians GM Chris Antonetti of Carlos Santana's efforts to become a viable third-base option for the Tribe in 2014:
"It's still very early in the process... He's made a couple of errors, but so far the reports have been encouraging. He made two errors in one game, but he also made a nice diving play."
Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer also reports that Indians infield coach Mike Sarbaugh has spent the last few days in the Dominican Republic, in order to aid Santana and provide some feedback to the front office. If Santana does end up proving capable of filling in for Chisenhall against lefties from time to time, I look forward to Carlos' detractors saying he doesn't hit well enough for a third baseman, and me having to point out that Santana's offense in 2013 would have placed him in the top five third baseman in baseball.
3) Corey Kluber learns French
If you're not already familiar with Carson Cistulli's affinity for Tribe pitcher Corey Kluber, there's no way for me to explain this brief post from Cistulli at FanGraphs. Frankly, even if you are familiar with Cistulli's affinity for Kluber, I'm not sure how to explain that post.
4) The Tigers are still really good, in case you'd forgotten
Also at FanGraphs, Jeff Sullivan looks at the Tigers' offseason (so far), arguing they're not as good as they were last year, but that it doesn't really matter, because they've still got far more talent than the Indians or Royals (to say nothing of the Twins and White Sox), and are a better bet to make the playoffs than any team in baseball.
5) Transactions news from around MLB
Grant Balfour agreed to a 2-year, $15 million deal with the Orioles a few days ago, but Baltimore backed out after his physical. That happens from time to time, including with Mike Napoli and the Red Sox last offseason. What's somewhat strange is that other doctors have looked at Balfour this week, and have all given him a clean bill of health, according to Ken Rosenthal, who adds that Balfour will consider filing a grievance against the O's. Baltimore may turn its attention to Fernando Rodney instead.
Catcher Kurt Suzuki has agreed to 1-year deal with the Twins worth $2.75 million. This probably isn't the move that puts MInnesota over the top though.
Kevin Youkilis is heading to Japan in 2014, to play for the Rakuten Golden Eagles (the same team that controls the rights to Masahiro Tanaka).
6) This week's off-topic topic
This week's wide releases at the box office include 'American Hustle,' set largely in the late 1970s, and 'Anchorman 2,' a sequel to the 2004 cult-hit comedy also set in the 1970s. I thought I'd take a look at my favorite films set (at least primarily) in the decade before I was born, but released since that decade ended.
My favorite films set (but not made) in the 1970s:
6) City of God (2002)
5) Apollo 13 (1995)
4) Goodfellas (1990)
3) Boogie Nights (1997)
2) Zodiac (2007)
1) Almost Famous (2000)