• Olbermann Questions Torre On Juice Hunt

    Posted by on March 31st, 2006 · Comments (3)

    Click here to read the interview.

    I have to say, this is Torre at his best – when he acts like a Human Sheild for his club. Let the media bother him, and leave the players alone.

    Mo’s Commandments

    Posted by on March 31st, 2006 · Comments (0)

    From the Bergen Record -

    With the young, Latin Yankees, Rivera stresses two things.

    “Learn the language,” Rivera said. “That’s major.” And, “Don’t get caught up with New York City. Because New York City will stand and you will go.”

    He’s a wise man, indeed.

    Pain In The Butt Pavano

    Posted by on March 31st, 2006 · Comments (3)

    From the Post:

    After Pavano threw one inning in a Double-A game yesterday, Joe Torre said he wasn’t sure when the $40 million investment would pitch again due to a bruised rear end the pitcher suffered when he fell covering first base Tuesday night.

    “I don’t think we can schedule him until the soreness gets out,” Torre said of Pavano, who will open the season on the DL while he builds arm strength lost due to a balky back. “It’s not related to why he is behind everybody.”

    Pavano was gone from the Legends Field clubhouse by the time Torre described Pavano’s latest physical problem.

    Today’s pop quiz:

    “Carl Pavano” is to “reliable pitcher” as “Brittle” is to:

    a. Adamantium
    b. Kevlar
    c. Gabbro
    d. All of the Above

    George Mitchell Selection Issue

    Posted by on March 31st, 2006 · Comments (4)

    The Inquisition (what a show)
    The Inquistion (here we go)
    We know you’re wishin’ that we’d go away.
    But the Inquisition’s here and it’s here to stay!

    From the AP:

    Announcing the investigation was the easy part for baseball. Now George Mitchell must try to find out how widespread steroid use really was.

    In the wake of a searing book about Barry Bonds, commissioner Bud Selig appointed the former Senate Majority Leader _ and currently a director of the Boston Red Sox _ to lead the investigation.

    Mitchell, meanwhile, said he will not resign from his position with the Red Sox. He also is chairman of The Walt Disney Co., the parent of ESPN, a national broadcast partner of baseball.

    “I don’t think there’s any conflict,” he said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. “I’m going to be independent, have complete independent authority and will act.”

    ESPN is airing a weekly behind-the-scenes look at Bonds _ with the Giants star’s cooperation _ starting next week.

    Along with working for the Red Sox, Mitchell is a former director of the Florida Marlins and served on an economic study committee Selig appointed in 1999. He said he previously announced he would leave the Disney board by the end of the year.

    “I’ve assured the Red Sox owners that should any matter arise, anybody affiliated with the Red Sox will be treated exactly as will anyone else,” he said.

    John Dowd, the Washington lawyer who headed baseball’s investigation of Pete Rose’s gambling in 1989, did not like the choice.

    “Mitchell doesn’t have a great track record with me. It doesn’t look like he’s independent,” Dowd said.

    Sen. Jim Bunning, a Kentucky Republican and baseball Hall of Famer, also criticized Mitchell.

    “While George Mitchell is certainly a man of great integrity, I believe that baseball would have been wiser to pick someone who is not as close to the game and may be able to take a more objective look into the facts,” Bunning said.

    DuPuy said baseball considered Mitchell’s potential conflicts of interest.

    “Given Sen. Mitchell’s integrity, given his background, he was absolutely considered to be the perfect choice for this job,” he said.

    When I hear that Trot Nixon is called in to be questioned, then I will believe that Mitchell is on the up-and-up with his research.

    Check the increase in HR% (and body type) for Nixon from 2002 to 2003. Note the way his body broke down in 2004. Further, look at how his HR% dropped (back) to pre-2003 levels in 2005.

    Fair is fair.

    It’s Like A Combination Of……..

    Posted by on March 30th, 2006 · Comments (7)

    ….Christmas morning, the last day of school, finding forgotten money in the pocket of an old coat, and waking up from an afternoon nap thinking it’s Monday morning and then learning that it’s really Saturday afternoon, every year when these puppies show up each season……..

    2006tkts2.jpg

    Bud, BALCO, and Bad News?

    Posted by on March 30th, 2006 · Comments (7)

    From mlb.com -

    Commissioner Bud Selig has named former Sen. George Mitchell to head a full-scale investigation into the past use of performance-enhancing drugs in Major League Baseball.

    The announcement came at a press conference at the Commissioner’s office on Thursday.

    The probe was spurred by recent allegations made in a book that targets San Francisco Giants slugger Barry Bonds and Gary Sheffield and Jason Giambi of the New York Yankees, among a number of other former Major Leaguers.

    All the players involved will be allowed to play while the probe is under way.

    What discipline Selig can hand out after the investigation is complete is a matter of conjecture. The union has a representational obligation to any of the players involved, Fehr said.

    “I hope nobody is making judgments about the inquiry before it’s done,” said Fehr, who met with Bonds at his Scottsdale Stadium locker for 20 minutes on Monday after the union’s annual spring session with the Giants players. “Bud will make whatever decision Bud makes and we’ll go from there.”

    The authors say Sheffield and Giambi were also extensive steroid users and link the pair to Bonds and his personal trainer, Greg Anderson, who was indicted in the BALCO case, pled guilty to reduced charges, and was sentenced to jail time. Victor Conte, the president of the now-defunct company, also pled to lesser charges and served a four-month prison sentence.

    If you ask me, Bud wants to get Bonds. But, to do that, he needs to ensure that Bonds is not the only one who goes down. So, if Bud does go after Bonds, I expect him to go after Giambi (for sure) and (maybe) Sheffield.

    If you take Giambi and/or Sheffeild out of the Yankees line-up for a while, it’s going to impact their won-loss record (considering who the Yankees have as present back-ups).

    This could be a mess. I don’t feel terrible for the Yankees – they knew the Giambi deal when they signed him. There’s no way that they could have not known he was using something. It was pretty obvious. But, they (Team Stein) chose to look the other way on that. (I’m not certain that the Yankees could have known about Sheffield.)

    Hey, on the bright side, this could be a chance for Kevin Thompson and Eric Duncan to show their stuff in New York. By the time the “investigation” is done, both Thompson and Duncan would have had a chance to get some Triple-A ABs under their belt. That could just be the additional seasoning that’s needed before helping out in the Bronx.

    If Giambi and/or Sheffield get suspended for a while as a result of all this stuff, the Yankees are going to need that help.

    The Roster Is Set

    Posted by on March 30th, 2006 · Comments (9)

    I sort of called it. From the Times:

    The Yankees’ 25-man roster is set for Monday’s opener at Oakland, with Scott Proctor winning the final spot on the pitching staff and Wil Nieves earning a spot as a third-string catcher. “It’s a little boring right now,” Manager Joe Torre said. “Everybody is ready to start the season.” …

    The call to keep Nieves is sofa-king-we-todd-ed. He’s not going to help in any way. They might as well play with twenty-four.

    The Two Idiots Agreed

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    From Yahoo Sports today:

    Top to bottom, their 2002 team was arguably the most talented since Jeter’s arrival in 1996. It certainly was their best pitching staff: Mussina, Roger Clemens, David Wells, Andy Pettitte, Jeff Weaver and Orlando Hernandez all were in the rotation at one juncture. Rivera, Mike Stanton, Steve Karsay and Ramiro Mendoza were tremendous out of the bullpen.

    And they lost in the first round to Anaheim.

    “The best team doesn’t always win,” Damon said. “The year we won in Boston, I thought the Angels were the best team. The year the Marlins won, I thought [Boston was] the best team. In 2001, I thought the A’s were the best team and the Diamondbacks won. You just have to get hot.”

    So, in 2004, Johnny Damon thought that the Angels should have won the ring. Funny, on October 1, 2004, I wrote the same thing at NetShrine.com:

    In summary, looking at the last nine World Series champions, the scrawling on this scorecard reads that recent champs were teams who:

    - Created and Saved Runs greater than average.

    - Did not rely mainly on homeruns, slugging, or walks on offense. More so, they were teams that made contact at the plate and hit for above average batting averages.

    - Had pitching staffs who controlled the strike zone (by striking out more than they walked) and limited base runners (and therefore runs).

    - Were able to call upon a closer who was at least league average.

    Now, if you look at all the teams (as of this morning) who are still eligible for post-season slots, the Anaheim Angels are the team that best fits the description detailed in the above four bullets. Therefore, should they make the post-season, the Angels should be the favorite to win the World Series in 2004 – according to the scrawling on this scorecard.

    Of course, Damon and I were both wrong – as wrong as a Tony Clark ground rule double! Oh, well, what can you do?

    ATM Reports Blog

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (1)

    Lee Sinins has started a blog. It’s at: www.atm-reports.com

    Knowing Lee, I would bet that it will have all the baseball news that you’ll ever want/need – and will not be short for opinions. I’m bookmarking it.

    Why I Would Bat Jason Giambi 3rd This Year

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (8)

    I’ve noticed that Torre has been batting Jason Giambi 6th, a lot, this spring. Thinking about it, I would bat him 3rd.

    If Damon and Jeter both reach, it makes it hard for teams to “shift” on Giambi. If they do shift, it makes turning the DP hard – and, if 3B is left open with the shift, Damon can just take off and swipe the bag.

    Also, Giambi is a high OBA-guy. So, you want him in front of Sheffield and A-Rod in case they go deep.

    Now, some might be concerned with Giambi being a DP machine – given his lack of speed. But, in 70% of his PAs last year, Jason either hit a fly ball or whiffed. (Further, last year, his GIDP% was 2.0.)

    So, it just seems to make sense to go:

    1. Damon
    2. Jeter
    3. Giambi
    4. A-Rod
    5. Sheffield
    6. Matsui

    Yes, I know that’s L-R-L-R-R-L. But, when you’re talking A-Rod and Sheffield, it’s not like they have issues with RHP.

    Time To Hug The UPS Man!

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (5)

    Looks like the season tickets are arriving today!

    00000tickets.jpg

    Now, that’s what Brown can do for me!

    Jeter: 2006 AL Batting Champ?

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (2)

    Tom Verducci of SI thinks so:

    AL Batting Champion
    ………
    2006: Derek Jeter, Yankees. Can it really be that he turns 32 in June? The career .314 hitter could get a boost with Johnny Damon in front of him.

    It’s not a huge reach. Jeter was 2nd in 1999 and 3rd in 2003. So, he’s been close before.

    It will probably come down to Derek, Manny, Ichiro, Vlad and Michael Young. Maybe A-Rod too.

    Jeter has just as good of a shot at it as anyone in the A.L.

    Last Week Of Hat Passing……..

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (2)

    Twenty four days into the donation drive, we’ve had 31 folks help out so far. Thanks to all involved, again, for that!

    But, this is much less than what I had hoped for on this effort (considering how many read this blog).

    So, I’m asking directly again – if you like this blog, please consider making a donation towards it – even if it’s just $1. It all helps. Thanks!

    Third Time The Choi-arm?

    Posted by on March 29th, 2006 · Comments (2)

    From the Boston Globe:

    Hee Seop Choi, who has a minor league option remaining, stands to be the [Red Sox roster] last cut. Because he debuted in the majors more than three years ago, Choi will have to clear revocable waivers to be optioned. He’s expected to clear, given that the Sox were able to claim him last week, after all 16 NL teams passed on him and the AL teams with a better 2005 record than the Sox passed on him. His eventual demotion will get the club to 25.

    Given the Yankees projected Opening Day roster, why not grab him? Choi can help the Yankees – and, it’s a chance to be a pest to the Red Sox.

    Nah, the Yankees would rather keep Wil Nieves, right?

    OK, enough for now. I’m going to find a wall to bang my head against. Maybe then I will understand the Yankees Choi-avoidance?

    YES Network Messing With My Screen

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (7)

    For the first time, tonight, I noticed on YES that they’ve moved from the “box in the upper corner” to the “bar across the top of the screen” to display the inning, score, count, outs, runners on, pitch speed, etc., while the game is in progress.

    Gosh, I hate it.

    It’s like someone is holding a piece of paper, over my head, and just dropping it down in front of my face, far enough, so that it gets in the way of the top of my eye-balls.

    Just give the guys in the booth an hourglass egg timer and tell them to cite the score and the inning each time it runs out (and then flip it over again) – and spare us all the Nintendo-like graphics.

    Classic “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” material – if ever there was one.

    Oh, How It Could Have Been Different!

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (1)

    In the April Edition of Esquire, is a feature on Bill James entitled “Abstract No More” which mentions:

    (When James stopped writing the Abstract nearly twenty years ago, he intended to turn his attention to something else, but he’s never been able to outrun baseball’s countless riddles.) The Red Sox are waiting for one of the four reports—some of which have stretched to two hundred pages—he’s contracted to write for them each year, with rankings of free agents and minor league talent and prospective objects of affection. He refuses to reveal the contents of his latest batch of recommendations, but one of his earliest studies for them, following the 2002 season, suggested that Boston consider either David Ortiz or Brad Fullmer, who, by his calculations, were virtually identical: aggressive pull hitters who picked up a lot of doubles and a few home runs and were liabilities in the field. For reasons James has never been privy to, the front office decided to nab Ortiz, perhaps because Fullmer once fractured a coach’s cheekbone with his bat. Backslaps all ’round, even though James admits that he “couldn’t see much of anything between them. Sometimes, all it comes down to is luck.”

    Why, oh why, didn’t the Red Sox take Fullmer instead of Ortiz? What a difference that would have made over the last three years….for New York.

    Yankees Need Defensive Efficiency

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    Scott Barzilla has a new post at AtHomePlate.com entitled Someone Forget Their Glove?

    While it tends to give off a Yankees-hater vibe, there’s one point in there that I tend to agree with:

    Defensive efficiency is defined as the rate of which balls in play are converted into outs. That seems simple enough don’t you think? If my suspicions are right then I would expect us to see these numbers begin to dip after 2001 when the Yankees stopped advancing to the World Series regularly.

    DEF EFF Rank
    1996 .683 22
    1997 .685 18
    1998 .713 1
    1999 .699 7
    2000 .693 13
    2001 .684 26
    2002 .690 21
    2003 .681 28
    2004 .688 19
    2005 .689 22

    Data is rarely ever clear cut, but if we divide this data into two halves we can see a significant difference. The club won four World Series crowns in the first five years and averaged a 12.1 big league rank in the period. Even when you remove 1998 (after all, a lot has to go right for you to win 114 games) you can see that they were above average in three out of five seasons. The average rank in the final five seasons was 23.1. None of those seasons were above the big league average.

    Defensive Efficiency Record is important. As I just shared the other day:

    “In all seven of the postseason series in 2005, the team in each series with the better regular DER [Defensive Efficiency Record] won that postseason series.”

    I’m not sure how the Yankees improve in DER this year, but, it’s something that they must do, if they hope to win a ring.

    Maybe the key is getting guys like Crosby and Phillips in the field (in RF and at 1B) as soon as they have a decent lead and it’s after the 7th inning? Maybe it’s Damon doing better than Bernie in CF?

    Then again, maybe it’s doing better with balls in the hole at short and up the middle?

    Of course, there is a perfect answer to this – just don’t let the batters on the other team hit the ball. But, since the Yankees are pretty much a contact staff at this point, that’s not going to happen.

    Predicting The 2006 O.D. Roster

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (1)

    Knowing who is still in the big league camp, and who is hurt, this is how I see the Opening Day roster shaping up:

    00000OD2006.jpg

    Now, the Wil Nieves thing could mess with this – and then there would be no 12th pitcher. Then, Proctor, Mendoza and Erickson fight it out for the 11th and last spot on the pitching side. (And, the winner there is probably just holding the seat warm for Small’s return.)

    As I don’t see Pavano or Dotel showing up until May (if that), this could be the team that we’re looking at for a while.

    So, to all my Yankees fans friends out there, looking at this roster, how do you feel? About one-third of the pitching looks somewhat suspect, no? (And, maybe that’s being generous.)

    Scott Proctor As The 5th Starter?

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    Has Proctor pitched himself into the 5th starter picture? (Say that 5 times, fast.)

    See the spring stats to date:

    0000proctor.jpg

    Yeah, it’s just spring training. But, who else is even available?

    16-Year-Old Randy Johnson News

    Posted by on March 28th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    I noticed a link over at BaseballThinkFactory.org today that had a story on Randy Johnson’s “love child.”

    There’s probably more of these types of stories out there than we are aware. Years ago, I heard stories about Bernie Williams having a baby with some girl in the Bronx. Is it true? Who knows? But, it was a story that I heard whispered in more than one place.

    Back to Unit, I hope that the New York media doesn’t turn this into something bigger than it should be – because so many players do have this type of stuff out there (and not everyone one of these stories ends up on the front page).

    The Yankees need to have a very good Randy Johnson this season. And, anything that could upset that (like a media circus/witch hunt) will not be in the best interests of Yankees fans.

    When A Man’s Thoughts Turn To “Spring”

    Posted by on March 27th, 2006 · Comments (10)

    0000steinpills.jpg

    Cashman to the Big Stein: Don’t worry. I know a guy who knows a guy who can get those blue pills on the low down and cheap.

    To which, Yogi, on the far right (with his back to the camera) adds: Yeah, George. Your Yoo-hoo isn’t even carbonated.
    __________

    Note to self: Steve, just one week until the real games start. Hang in there bunky. Pretty soon you won’t have to make stuff up…….

    The View From Above

    Posted by on March 27th, 2006 · Comments (2)

    OnNYTurf.com has some interesting photos/plans on the new Yankee Stadium – click here for more. I had fun playing with the different buttons/views.

    If they do tilt the new park a little, like in this picture:

    00000newstad.jpg

    I wonder if CF would join LF as the sun field(s) during day games. Could make for some wacky weekends in the Bronx.

    Jerry Narron On Munson

    Posted by on March 27th, 2006 · Comments (0)

    From HeraldTribune.com -

    But to those fans who recall the predecessor to Lou Gehrig for the Yankees (Wally Pipp), and the first baseman who followed (Babe Dahlgren), Narron might best be remembered as the Yankees’ catcher the game after the death of Thurman Munson.

    New York’s captain and grass-stained heartbeat died on Aug. 2, 1979, when his Cessna Citation jet crashed 1,000 feet short of the runway at Canton-Akron Airport in Ohio.

    At the time, Narron was 23-year-old rookie catcher with the Yankees. Munson proved an enviable role model. He joined the Yankees in 1969 after fewer than 100 games in the minors and won Rookie of the Year honors in 1970, hitting .302.

    “I learned a great deal from him,” said Narron.

    Munson’s death, as he practiced landings and take-offs, happened on a Thursday, a Yankee off-day.

    Narron, who roomed with reliever Ron Davis at the time, remembered Davis answering the phone in their apartment, “and, to be honest, I can’t even remember who called us (with the news),’” said Narron.

    “I think everybody who played with (Munson) still misses him,” Narron said, “and thinks about him at times.”

    If Narron ever makes it to a Yankees Old-Timer’s Game, the fans should give him a good hand. He deserves it.

    Review: Behind-The-Scenes Baseball

    Posted by on March 26th, 2006 · Comments (2)

    decatur.jpg

    I’ve just finished reading Behind-The-Scenes Baseball: Real-Life Applications of Statistical Analysis Actually Used by Major League Teams…and Other Stories by Doug Decatur.

    Decatur has been a statistical consultant to big league teams for 15 years – mostly for the Brewers, Reds, Cubs and Astros.

    Behind-The-Scenes Baseball is broken into three parts. The first section is a collection of “insider” stories from his days as a consultant. The second section is a “G.M. IQ Test” of 100 questions. And, the third and last section is a focus/case study on the 2004 & 2005 Phil Garner Astros. (Decatur has worked with Garner for a while and they have a strong relationship.)

    This book is a quick read – you can get through it in a day.

    While I didn’t find the insider stories in the first section to be very juicy, they were not boring.

    I did enjoy the “G.M. IQ Test” very much. Basically, it’s a quiz on the findings of Bill James, Baseball Prospectus, John Dewan, STATS Inc., and Decatur himself.

    From a Yankees fan perspective, I found these questions most interesting:

    1. Assuming the 2004 Yankees and Red Sox were equal teams, what was the mathematical chance that the Red Sox would come back from 0-3 in the ALCS?

    2. True or False – For a manager, there is a positive correlation between the number of young players developed into full-time starters and the number of championships won.

    [The answers will follow at the close of this review.]

    The third section of the book was also interesting – to see the work behind the curtain on the 2004 Astros comeback and the Astros play in the 2005 postseason. One item in there was extremely interesting to me:

    “In all seven of the postseason series in 2005, the team in each series with the better regular DER [Defensive Efficiency Record] won that postseason series.”

    See, when I wrote about the Yankees 2005 ALDS issues back in October, and said:

    Defense. Like just about every game this series, the Angels turn hits into outs while the Yankees turn outs into base runners. That Crosby-Sheffield crash reminded me of Blair-Reggie collision back on May 12,1978 (when A.O. went inside the park). Sad part is, even without the crash, I don’t think Sheffield makes the grab there.

    ….I was not just kidding.

    On the whole, I recommend reading Behind-The-Scenes Baseball. The “G.M. IQ Test” alone makes it worth it.
    ________________

    Answers to the above questions:

    1. 6.25% [From John Dewan's Stat of the Week, 10/20/04.]
    2. True. [This is taken from a study on managers in the Baseball Report Card.]

    The Flash Unit Connection

    Posted by on March 26th, 2006 · Comments (3)

    From the Times -

    Flaherty worked most closely with Johnson last season, but he never really got to know him. They were business partners, but that was all.

    “He doesn’t let too many people in,” Flaherty said. “We have the same agent, so I had a little heads-up on that and an understanding of what maybe makes him tick. But he’s a tough guy to get to know. I don’t think there will be too many people who say, `I knew Randy Johnson’ when it’s all said and done.”

    Am I the only person who is bothered by this “we have the same agent” disclosure (made now)?

    When I hear this, it makes me think that the agent was responsible for Unit’s request to have Flaherty catch his games – and, then, in reality, we have an agent impacting the Yankees line-up card.

    Maybe it’s just me being cranky? But, then, why did we not hear about this “connection” last year – when it was “live”? Why does it come out now, when Flash is retired?

    Something smells stinky here. Granted, it’s not an olfactory nightmare, but, it’s not exactly a Sunday morning walk into the bakery moment (hearing this now) in my mind.

    Matt Childers

    Posted by on March 25th, 2006 · Comments (3)

    I only saw him throw a bit today. But, he looked like he had a clue on the mound – and has a good move to 1B for a RHP. He just might be the Aaron Small of 2006.

    The Last Nine Innings

    Posted by on March 25th, 2006 · Comments (0)

    FYI, you might enjoy the review of The Last Nine Innings that I just did for NetShrine.com. Click here to read it.

    With all the Yankees-stuff in there, I think this a must read for Yankees fans.

    Cash Vs. Joe On Phillips

    Posted by on March 25th, 2006 · Comments (3)

    From the Asbury Park Press -

    Phillips has caused some healthy debate within the organization. General manager Brian Cashman believes he is worthy of regular at-bats as the designated hitter. Joe Torre will start the season with Bernie Williams in that spot. He sees Phillips as a late-inning defensive replacement for Jason Giambi.

    But Phillips could see more action than Torre anticipates. Giambi doesn’t like to DH but his chronically sore knees and frequents sprains and strains often force him into that role.

    “We’ll have to wait and see how it plays out,” Torre said. “But Philly has shown us he can be a good and productive player.”

    Also, let’s not forget, since he’s turned 30, on average, Bernie Williams misses about 20 games a year. That’s just about a month of play. Somehow, I think we will see a lot of Andy this season. It’s up to him to take advantage of his chances.

    Are They Smarter, Or Luckier?

    Posted by on March 24th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    From the AP, via a tip from WasWatching.com reader JeremyM -

    Boston claimed Hee-Seop Choi off waivers from the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday, giving the Red Sox another first basemen to back up starter Kevin Youkilis.

    “We have liked Choi for a long time and view this as an opportunity to acquire him when his value is down a bit,” Boston general manager Theo Epstein said. “We like his power, his patience and his hands at first base. Choi provides depth for us at first base and in a way third base as well, considering Kevin Youkilis’ ability to play both positions.”

    Mike Lowell, who won a Gold Glove at third base last year with Florida, is Boston’s starter but is coming off a poor season at the plate.

    “We’ll see how our roster shakes out, but Choi does have minor league options if we want him to get every day at-bats in Triple-A for a period of time,” Epstein said.

    I’ve been saying for a while that the Yankees should have went after Choi.

    So, the question is – did the Yankees try, or, did the Red Sox get lucky because they have dibs before the Yankees in the picking order?

    If it’s the latter, then I have to ask Bud “Why the hell are they co-champs if it means that the Yankees then don’t get to pick Choi at the same time?”

    Then again, if it’s just a matter of the Sox being smarter here – and the Yankees had no interest – then it’s a moot point.

    Still, either way, it would be nice to know why this went down the way that it did.

    Thanks Looie!

    Posted by on March 24th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    I see that Ron Blomberg has a new book out.

    I wonder how different life would be for Ronnie if Luis Tiant did not have some early game wildness back in 1973?

    Baseball, quite often, is like real estate – it’s all about location.

    In any event, the Blomberg story is an interesting one – as he could hit, without question. It’s a shame that he could not stay healthy.

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