In Boston, Alex Speier writes the Red Sox have a "significant strategic decision to make regarding how much they plan to spend on payroll in the coming years, and whether they plan to get under the luxury tax threshold in the next year or two." That decision, in turn, will "frame the strengths they seek in a new head of baseball operations." The team "wants someone with a well-rounded skill set, but the question of payroll looms as enormous given how it will shape the roster expectations and requirements of a new head of the department" (BOSTON GLOBE, 9/17).
FANS COME FIRST: In Milwaukee, Tom Haudricourt noted netting at Miller Park "will be extended again before the start" of the '20 season. An additional 105 feet will be in place on the first-base side and 145 feet on the third-base side, "past the area where the tarp is located." The height will be the "same as existing netting that goes to the end of the dugouts" (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 9/14).
COMING ON BOARD: In Austin, Chris Bils noted Toby Neugebauer and David Kahn are "set to join" MLS expansion club Austin FC's ownership group Two Oak Ventures. Neugebauer is a co-Founder of Houston-based private equity firm Quantum Energy Partners, and Kahn is an Austin-based real estate developer. Their investments are "smaller than the four minority partners previously announced." Details on how much funding the team has received "have not been released" (AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN, 9/14).