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Posts Tagged ‘Oakland.’

Astros improved by 19 games in 2014 under Bo Porter but ownership turns to Hinch to win championships

A.J. Hinch

The Houston Astros stunned the baseball world when they fired manager Bo Porter on September 1 in only his second season on the job and turned to Tom Lawless as the interim manager.

The team was very competitive in 2014. They made a 19-game improvement in wins over 2013 and they had the American League batting champion in Jose Altuve.

By finishing at 70-92, the Astros ended up fourth in the tough AL West and ended their streak of three straight 100-plus seasons.

On Monday, one day after the MLB regular season ended, the Astros became the first team to name a new manager.

They have hired A.J. Hinch,  a member of the bronze medal-winning 1996 U.S. Olympic Team, a former catcher, former manager and front office executive. As the manager of the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2009 & 2010 encompassing 212 games, his record was 89-123.

The 40-year-old Hinch, brings more than 20 years of playing, managing and front office experience in Major League Baseball to the Astros organization. This is his second managerial post, as he served as Arizona’s manager for parts of two seasons from 2009-10. Hinch also played parts of seven Major League seasons with Oakland (1998-2000), Kansas City (2001-02), Detroit (2003) and Philadelphia (2004). A former catcher, Hinch played in 338 career Major League games after being selected in the third round of the 1996 draft. His career totals include a .219 average with 32 homers and 112 RBI’s.

Hinch joins the Astros after coming from the San Diego Padres, where he most recently served as the club’s Vice President and Assistant General Manager for three years (2011-14). In that role, Hinch oversaw all aspects of the club’s professional scouting and medical departments, while assisting with the club’s roster composition, player acquisitions, talent evaluations and contract negotiations.

Hinch, who retired as a player in 2005, joined Arizona’s front office in 2006 and was eventually named the team’s Director of Player Development later that season. He held that role until being named the Diamondbacks manager in 2009.

Astros GM Jeff Luhnow believes that Hinch is the man to lead Houston back to the success it had in the 90′s and early to mid 2000′s. “I feel A.J. Hinch will be the manager that is going to be here when we win the World Series.”

Says Hinch, “The goal is always to win championships. It is easier said than done. We have alot of work to do to get back to the success that the organization has had in the past.”

 

PORTIONS OF THIS ARTICLE TAKEN FROM HOUSTON ASTROS PRESS RELEASE; COURTESY MLBpressbox.com

 

2012 MLB Highlight: Adam Dunn became sixth player to hit 40 HR’s in both leagues

Adam Dunn at 1B (photo by Keith Allison via wikipedia commons)

Chicago White Sox 1B/DH Adam Dunn’s 40-homer season during the 2012 season, allowed him to become just the sixth player in major league history to belt 40 or more homers in a season in the National League and the American League.

In the N.L., the 33-year-old hit 40-plus homers in a season four times for the Cincinnati Reds (2004-2007) and 40 homers playing for the Reds and Arizona in 2008.

The five players who accomplished the feat before Dunn includes: Darrell Evans with Atlanta and Detroit, Shawn Green with Toronto and the Los Angeles Dodgers, Ken Griffey, Jr. with Seattle and the Reds, Mark McGwire with Oakland and St. Louis and Jim Thome with Cleveland, Philadelphia and the Chicago White Sox.

Dunn is a 2-time All-Star, 2002 with the Reds and 2012 with the White Sox. He has 406 career homers and 1,018 RBI’s.

Dunn has also played for the Washington Nationals.

 

Info compiled from MLB, Chicago White Sox, Radio & TV news

Indians try to sign Ohio native Nick Swisher who visits Progressive Field today

 

There have been reports on radio talks and in news reports that Free Agent outfielder Nick Swisher will be touring the Cleveland Indians and Progressive Field today.

The Cleveland Indians need a starting right fielder after trading Shin Soo Choo last week to Cincinnati in exchange for Drew Stubbs who’ll play center field.

Swisher, a native of Columbus, Ohio and the son of former MLB catcher Steve Swisher, played for the New York Yankees last season where he hit 24 homers.

Nick Swisher (photo by Keith Allison via wikipedia commons)

The 32-year-old switch-hitter, who can also play first base, has played for Oakland and the White Sox.

Swisher’s career totals include: a .256 batting average with 209 homers, 673 RBI’s with 1,085 base hits.

White Sox Peavy named AL Pitcher of the Month for April

 

Jake Peavy, right-handed pitcher of the Chicago White Sox has been named American League Pitcher of the Month for April.  It is the fifth career monthly award for Peavy and first for a White Sox pitcher since Gavin Floyd won in June 2010.

The 30-year-old Peavy, went 3-1 with a 1.67 ERA (7 ER/37.2 IP), 33 strikeouts, two complete games and one shutout in five starts during the month.  He led the AL in ERA, opponents average (.162) and complete games and tied for the lead in shutouts and quality starts (5).

Jake Peavy with Padres (2006 photo by SD Dirk via wikipedia commons)

Peavy has allowed two runs in 25.0 IP over his last three starts, including a streak of 17.0 consecutive scoreless IP from April 18-28.  He has thrown back-to-back complete games for the first time in his career, becoming the first White Sox pitcher since Mark Buehrle on July 17-23, 2010 to accomplish the feat, including his sixth career shutout on April 23 at Oakland.

It is the third AL honor received by a White Sox player in 2012.  Philip Humber was named AL Player of the Week for April 16-22 after throwing the 21st perfect game in major-league history on April 21 at Seattle, and Paul Konerko received the honor for April 23-29.

The Mobile, Alabama native has a career-record of 112-82, with an ERA of 3.43, 1,587 strikeouts, 6 shutouts, 11 complete games.

The three-time All-Star played for the San Diego Padres from 2002-2009 before being traded to the White Sox.

 

Info compiled from Chicago White Sox, Major League Baseball & MLBpressbox.com

Reds sign veteran reliever Wuertz to minor-league deal

 

The Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday signed right-handed reliever Michael Wuertz to a Minor League contract. Wuertz has reported to the organization’s complex for extended spring training in Goodyear, Arizona.

 

The 33-year-old Wuertz spent 2011 with the A’s and had a 6.68 ERA 33 2/3 innings over 39 games. He missed a large part of the season due to hand and wrist injuries and was released in October.

Michael Wuertz (file photo)

Once considered a quality setup man, Wuertz has a 21-11 lifetime record with a 3.71 ERA and 444 strikeouts in 426 games  with the Chicago Cubs and Oakland A’s from 2004-11.

 

Info compiled from Cincinnati Reds, MLB, Radio & TV news

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