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#pounditThursday, October 29, 2020

Articles tagged: Gabe Kapler

Giants manager says Pablo Sandoval is ‘healthy’ despite unflattering viral photo

Pablo Sandoval seems to have fallen back into some old bad habits, but San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler does not sound too worried about him.

An unflattering image of the veteran slugger Sandoval looking seriously hefty went viral this week amid the resumption of team workouts. Have a look:

Speaking with the media on Sunday, Kapler addressed Sandoval’s weight.

“He’s demonstrated he’s healthy,” said Kapler, per Andrew Baggarly of The Athletic. “That’s the most important thing. He’s not going to lead off for us. He slugs. He’s a good DH candidate. He’s got nice soft hands. All those things are present in camp and those are the things we’ll be focusing on.”

Sandoval, the two-time All-Star and former World Series MVP, will turn 34 next month. He is on his second stint with the Giants and hit .268 with 14 homers and 41 RBIs in 108 games last season.

Formally listed at 268 pounds, Sandoval has historically struggled with his weight, and a former trainer once detailed the extent of his eating problem. The 2020 season will feature the use of a universal designated hitter though, so as long as Sandoval’s weight does not impact his ability to produce at the plate, Kapler probably will not be overly concerned.

Gabe Kapler addresses his handling of Dodgers allegations

New San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler had to address a difficult topic in his introductory press conference on Wednesday.

The Washington Post reported last February that in 2015, a 17-year-old girl had reported to Kapler, then the Dodgers’ director of player development, that she had been videotaped by two Dodgers minor leagues while being assaulted by two women in a hotel room. Kapler did not go to the police, instead trying to set up a dinner with the girl and the minor leaguers. The girl later went to police and stated that she had been sexually assaulted by one of the players. Kapler later stated that he had not been aware of that allegation until the Post reported the story, and said his process was in line with the club’s policy.

During Kapler’s press conference Wednesday, both Kapler and Giants president Farhan Zaidi, who was GM of the Dodgers at the time of the allegations, addressed what happened to get ahead of potential questions.

Kapler was 39 at the time of the Dodger incidents, so to essentially say that he would’ve needed to talk to his mother to handle that situation better is fairly ridiculous. It’s easy to see that the Giants knew this would come up and wanted to try to get ahead of it, but it’s unlikely that Kapler’s explanation — and his admission that he was in over his head at the time — is unlikely to silence his critics. This, combined with fan antipathy toward the hire due to his mediocre record and unusual decision-making with the Philadelphia Phillies, probably isn’t how the Giants wanted his tenure to start.

Gabe Kapler hired by Giants to be team’s next manager

Gabe Kapler

The San Francisco Giants were down to some finalists in their search for a new manager and have decided on Gabe Kapler.

The Giants were looking for a replacement for Bruce Bochy, who announced he would retire after the 2019 season (though he still may want to manage in the future). They were down to Joe Espada, Rays bench coach Matt Quatraro, and Kapler in their search, and decided on Kapler.

Kapler, who worked in the Dodgers’ front office at the same time as Farhan Zaidi, was said to be Zaidi’s choice all along.

Here is Zaidi’s statement on hiring Kapler:

Kapler played 12 seasons in the bigs and managed the Phillies the last two seasons. He was fired after going 161-163 in his two seasons.

Astros’ Joe Espada reportedly interviewing with Cubs for manager job

Chicago Cubs logo

The Houston Astros may be locked up with the New York Yankees in a contentious ALCS, but bench coach Joe Espada is already looking ahead — at least a little bit.

Mark Feinsand of MLB Network reports that Espada is in Chicago on Monday and will interview with the Cubs for their vacant manager position.

Although managerial interviews during the playoffs aren’t entirely out of the norm, it’s at least somewhat surprising to see the Astros allowing Espada to interview ahead of a crucial Game 3. However, the Cubs are adamant they’d like to wrap up their search as quickly as possible and were determined to meet with Espada before a decision on their next manager was made.

In addition to Espada, the Cubs will also interview former Philadelphia Phillies skipper Gabe Kapler, according to MLB.com beat writer Jordan Bastian.

Kapler is also high on the list to take over in San Francisco, and is scheduled to meet with the Giants later this week.

Gabe Kapler linked to Giants manager job after being fired by Phillies

Gabe Kapler

Gabe Kapler was fired by the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday after just two seasons with the team, and some think he should have been given a better shot after compiling a .500 record over that span. However, it seems like there is a good chance the 44-year-old will not be unemployed for long.

Several teams are looking for new managers this offseason, and Kapler is hoping to score one of those jobs. The San Francisco Giants may make the most sense, as Kapler has a strong relationship with president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi.

While the Phillies fell short of expectations by missing the playoffs this season after spending a ton of money, Kapler’s time with the team was far from a disaster. He had some miscommunications with players and made his fair share of mistakes, but ultimately guys like Bryce Harper did not earn their paychecks. Philly also dealt with some key injuries early on, most notably when star outfielder Andrew McCutchen tore his ACL in June and was ruled out for the remainder of the year.

Even Kapler’s own boss gave him a huge vote of confidence less than four months ago, so it would not be a surprise to see him get another shot as a manager immediately.

Report: Mike Scioscia, Buck Showalter names to watch after Phillies fire Gabe Kapler

Mike Scioscia Angels

The Philadelphia Phillies announced on Thursday that they have fired manager Gabe Kapler after his two seasons with the team, and they may be searching for an experienced replacement.

Buck Showalter and Mike Scioscia are two candidates to watch for the Phillies job, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports. Joe Maddon would also likely have some interest if things didn’t work out for him with the Los Angeles Angels, but it sounds like Maddon already has a handshake agreement in place.

The Phillies made a series of huge moves last offseason, the most noteworthy of which was signing Bryce Harper to a 13-year, $330 million contract. They then struggled for the majority of the year and finished with a .500 record, and the belief all along is that Kapler would not keep his job unless there were immediate results.

Showalter has already admitted that he would like to be considered for another managerial vacancy, and he would almost certainly be interested in the Phillies job as well. The 63-year-old last managed with the Baltimore Orioles from 2010-2018.

Scioscia stepped down last year after 19 seasons with the Angels and took the 2019 season off. He could also have multiple opportunities now that the Phillies job has opened up.

Gabe Kapler has apparent miscommunication with player over benching

Gabe Kapler

MLB players being benched for a lack of hustle isn’t particularly a new thing. Typically, though, when it happens, the player is at least told why.

There seemed to be some confusion in that department between Philadelphia Phillies manager Gabe Kapler and second baseman Cesar Hernandez. In Sunday’s game, Hernandez hit a fly ball off the wall that he watched, thinking it was a home run. He only reached first, but ultimately scored on a home run by Rhys Hoskins.

Hernandez was not lifted from the game, though Kapler was critical of his lack of hustle after the game. Subsequently, Hernandez was left out of Monday’s lineup, with Kapler citing that lack of hustle as the reason.

Just one problem: that came as news to Hernandez, who claimed Kapler had told him it was unrelated.

Kapler said he would clarify with Hernandez that the benching was in response to Sunday, but it’s still an odd look. Sure, common sense might have dictated to Hernandez that the two things were connected, but that clearly didn’t happen. Maybe the wires simply got crossed. It still doesn’t explain why Hernandez wasn’t simply pulled from Sunday’s game, though.

Interestingly, a similar thing happened to one of Philadelphia’s divison rivals earlier this year. In that instance, it was the player who thought it was disciplinary, while the manager denied it.

Gabe Kapler will not let job speculation change managerial style

Gabe Kapler

The struggling Philadelphia Phillies are in serious danger of missing the playoffs after an offseason of major investment, but manager Gabe Kapler isn’t worrying about what that might mean for his job.

Kapler said Wednesday that he won’t “manage scared” no matter what is said about his job security.

“I’m not going to manage scared,” Kapler told Angelo Cataldi and the Morning Team of 94 WIP. “I didn’t play scared. I fought and gave everything I had every single day. You’re going to manage in the same way. So, if I get fired I do and it’ll be a hard day for me to deal with, but I’m not going to waste a single ounce of my mental or emotional energy thinking about myself when I could be thinking about how I could help us win tonight’s game. The players, those 25 men battling out there, those are the ones that matter.”

Kapler and his coaches got a huge vote of confidence earlier in the season, but as things haven’t turned around, changes were made. It remains to be seen if there are larger ones to come.

Eight MLB managers who could be on the hot seat

Though we’re nearly halfway through the season, we have yet to see an in-season managerial change in Major League Baseball this year. Will that stay the case? It’s hard to say, though there are certainly some who could lose their job tomorrow and few would be surprised.

Even if no changes are imminent, there are a number of managers whose statuses are up in the air beyond the 2019 season, and can’t be feeling all that comfortable in their seats right now. Here are eight managers who are under increasing pressure in 2019 if they want to keep their job going forward.

8. Mike Shildt, Cardinals

Shildt took over as the Cardinals’ interim manager last year and had that tag removed in August. Just shy of a year on, it’s tough to argue that he’s moved the organization forward, as they hover a few games above .500 despite a busy offseason that was meant to put them back in the mix for a World Series. Shildt is probably not in any imminent danger, and will see out the season unless the Cardinals really fall into a tailspin, but the Cardinals, as an organization, typically demand more than he has delivered so far.

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Gabe Kapler ejected by Joe West for arguing after hit-by-pitch

Gabe Kapler

Gabe Kapler went over 230 games in his managerial career without ever being ejected from a game. And now he’s been ejected twice in the span of four days.

Kapler was tossed from Tuesday’s Philadelphia Phillies-New York Mets game by umpire Joe West after protesting a decision.

Wilmer Font had just given up back-to-back home runs to the Phillies, blowing a 5-2 lead in the sixth as Philly took a 7-5 lead. After surrendering the two homers, Font hit Scott Kingery with a pitch high on the shoulder.

Rather than immediately eject Font, West issued warnings to both sides. That left the Phillies in a bad spot; not only was Font spared an ejection, but if Philly tried to exact revenge by hitting a Mets player, their player would have been tossed. Kapler came out to argue and was quickly ejected.

Kapler seemed to have a good case for being upset.

Kapler was also ejected on Saturday against the Marlins, ironically on a play also involving Kingery being hit.