I'll begin this Sunday morning with a health update. DayQuil and NyQuil don't work. At least, not for my cold, which hasn't gotten any better.
I'm attempting to limit my coughing to once every 14 seconds as I type this entry. Wish me luck.
As I scroll through the comments on my Twitter account (@MASNroch), I'm frequently asked for updates on outfielder Nate McLouth. There's nothing new to report, unfortunately. He's still a free agent and the Orioles are still interested in re-signing him.
McLouth just returned from a nine-day vacation with his wife that took him out of the country. He's back in the U.S. - and still on the market.
The Orioles made him an offer, though I don't have any details. I never see his name linked to other clubs, which is interesting, since everyone is rumored at some point to be drawing interest.
Executive vice president Dan Duquette traded for Trayvon Robinson, but he still regarded McLouth as a "possibility" to stay with the Orioles. And yes, there's room for McLouth, Robinson and Nolan Reimold on the roster, depending on how the rest of it is constructed.
The Orioles want him back and he'd like to return at the right price. He's going to explore the market and take his time making a decision.
What would you consider a fair offer for McLouth?
As long as I'm tackling the most frequently asked questions - and it seems appropriate on an NFL Sunday - I don't regard Billy Ripken as a candidate to replace DeMarlo Hale as third base coach. The reason is simple. He's never coached any position at any level, and manager Buck Showalter isn't going to experiment at third base.
Showalter wanted Ripken on his staff at one time, and it looked like it might happen. But it wouldn't have been third base coach.
Ripken has a nice gig now at MLB Network. And again, he's never coached third base.
The same is true of Mike Bordick. Yes, he could work with the infielders. Same with Ripken. That part makes perfect sense. But he didn't get the job last winter because he lacked experience at third.
One alternative was to hire Bordick as first base coach and move Wayne Kirby to third. It was discussed last winter, but it didn't happen. Kirby has limited experience at third.
Again, no experimenting.
Showalter has no ties to former Orioles second baseman Rich Dauer, who was let go as Rockies third base coach. Otherwise, Dauer is a perfect candidate, and not just for nostalgic purposes. Keep his name in mind.
I did a phone interview yesterday on Sportsnet 590, billed as Canada's No. 1 sports radio station. It's the home of the Toronto Blue Jays, who hired Hale as their bench coach over the weekend.
I was asked about Hale and what he brings to the organization. I honestly didn't have much of a relationship with him. His personality is the polar opposite of Kirby's. And Hale didn't make the kind of decisions that warranted a postgame interview. The better you are, the less attention you receive.
Also, you only see the coaches in spring training if they're on the field or happen to walk through the clubhouse. Their lockers are in another part of the building, which is off-limits to the media. In Fort Lauderdale, you could walk right up to them and request an interview or make small talk. The clubhouse was roughly the size of the backseat of my Toyota.
Hale is highly respected in the industry and commonly viewed as a manager-in-waiting. His loss can't be downplayed. He didn't figure to leave the Orioles unless he got an offer to manage.
The Blue Jays got a good man. They've been big winners since the season ended. And they've still got their health, which is more than I can say for me.