• 2010 Staff Predictions

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (20)

    Well, the start of the 2010 Major League Baseball regular season is not that far away now. So, what better time than the present to share the WasWatching.com Staff predictions for this year? They follow below. It will be interesting to look back at these in seven months and see how we did with these picks. In the meantime, enjoy going through them now…and feel free to leave questions, observations, etc.. in the comments section of this post.

    Name Corey Italiano Jeff F. Dan LaTorraca MJ Recanati * denotes wild card
    AL East 1st Place Yankees Yankees Yankees Red Sox AL East 1st Place
    AL East 2nd Place Rays * Red Sox* Red Sox* Yankees* AL East 2nd Place
    AL East 3rd Place Red Sox Rays Rays Rays AL East 3rd Place
    AL East 4th Place Orioles Orioles Orioles Orioles AL East 4th Place
    AL East 5th Place Blue Jays Blue Jays Blue Jays Blue Jays AL East 5th Place
    AL Central 1st Place Twins Twins Twins Twins AL Central 1st Place
    AL Central 2nd Place White Sox Tigers White Sox White Sox AL Central 2nd Place
    AL Central 3rd Place Tigers White Sox Tigers Tigers AL Central 3rd Place
    AL Central 4th Place Indians Indians Royals Royals AL Central 4th Place
    AL Central 5th Place Royals Royals Indians Indians AL Central 5th Place
    AL West 1st Place Mariners Mariners Angels Angels AL West 1st Place
    AL West 2nd Place Angels Angels Mariners Mariners AL West 2nd Place
    AL West 3rd Place Rangers Rangers Rangers Rangers AL West 3rd Place
    AL West 4th Place Athletics Athletics Athletics A’s AL West 4th Place
    NL East 1st Place Phillies Phillies Phillies Phillies NL East 1st Place
    NL East 2nd Place Braves* Mets Braves Braves NL East 2nd Place
    NL East 3rd Place Mets Braves Mets Mets NL East 3rd Place
    NL East 4th Place Marlins Marlins Marlins Marlins NL East 4th Place
    NL East 5th Place Nationals Nationals Nationals Nationals NL East 5th Place
    NL Central 1st Place Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals NL Central 1st Place
    NL Central 2nd Place Cubs Cubs Cubs* Cubs NL Central 2nd Place
    NL Central 3rd Place Brewers Reds Brewers Brewers NL Central 3rd Place
    NL Central 4th Place Astros Brewers Astros Reds NL Central 4th Place
    NL Central 5th Place Reds Astros Reds Astros NL Central 5th Place
    NL Central 6th Place Pirates Pirates Pirates Pirates NL Central 6th Place
    NL West 1st Place Dodgers Dodgers Rockies Dodgers NL West 1st Place
    NL West 2nd Place Rockies Rockies* Dodgers Diamondbacks* NL West 2nd Place
    NL West 3rd Place Diamondbacks Diamondbacks Giants Rockies NL West 3rd Place
    NL West 4th Place Giants Giants Diamondbacks Giants NL West 4th Place
    NL West 5th Place Padres Padres Padres Padres NL West 5th Place
    ALCS Winner Yankees Yankees Yankees Red Sox ALCS Winner
    ALCS Loser Mariners Red Sox Red Sox Yankees ALCS Loser
    # of Games in ALCS 5 7 7 5 # of Games in ALCS
    NLCS Winner Phillies Rockies Phillies Phillies NLCS Winner
    NLCS Loser Cardinals Phillies Rockies Cardinals NLCS Loser
    # of Games in NLCS 7 6 6 6 # of Games in NLCS
    WS Winner Yankees Yankees Yankees Red Sox WS Winner
    WS Loser Phillies Rockies Phillies Philles WS Loser
    # of Games in WS 5 6 7 6 # of Games in WS
    AL MVP Evan Longoria Joe Mauer Alex Rodriguez Kevin Youkilis AL MVP
    NL MVP Albert Pujols Matt Kemp Albert Pujols Albert Pujols NL MVP
    AL CY Cliff Lee Felix Hernandez Felix Hernandez Jon Lester AL CY
    NL CY Roy Halladay Josh Johnson Roy Halladay Roy Halladay NL CY
    AL ROY Neftali Feliz Brian Matusz Scott Sizemore Brian Matusz AL ROY
    NL ROY Jason Heyward Jason Heyward Jason Heyward Jason Heyward NL ROY
    AL Comeback Milton Bradley Ben Sheets Ken Griffey Jr. Ben Sheets AL Comeback
    NL Comeback Troy Glaus Aramis Ramirez Troy Glaus Tim Hudson NL Comeback
    AL Manager of the Year Don Wakamatsu Ron Gardenhire Don Wakamatsu Terry Francona AL Manager of the Year
    NL Manager of the Year Bobby Cox Dusty Baker Clint Hurdle Bobby Cox NL Manager of the Year
    AL Batting Robinson Cano Ichiro Suzuki Ichiro Suzuki Ichiro Suzuki AL Batting
    NL Batting Albert Pujols Hanley Ramirez Albert Pujols Pablo Sandoval NL Batting
    AL HR Alex Rodriguez Alex Rodriguez Alex Rodriguez Mark Teixeira AL HR
    NL HR Mark Reynolds Ryan Howard Prince Fielder Ryan Howard NL HR
    AL ERA Felix Hernandez Felix Hernandez Felix Hernandez Jon Lester AL ERA
    NL ERA Roy Halladay Dan Haren Roy Halladay Tim Lincecum NL ERA
    AL K Justin Verlander Jon Lester Justin Verlander Jon Lester AL K
    NL K Tim Lincecum Tim Lincecum Tim Lincecum Tim Lincecum NL K
    AL First Firing Ron Washington Bob Geren Ron Washington Dave Trembley AL First Firing
    NL First Firing Jerry Manuel Bud Black Dusty Baker Dusty Baker NL First Firing
    AL Overrated Team Red Sox Rays Rays Yankees AL Overrated Team
    NL Overrated Team Dodgers None Braves Dodgers NL Overrated Team
    AL Overrated Player Adrian Beltre Adrian Beltre Justin Morneau BJ Upton AL Overrated Player
    NL Overrated Player Stephen Strasburg Mark Reynolds Jason Bay Chipper Jones NL Overrated Player
    AL Underrated Team Orioles None Orioles White Sox AL Underrated Team
    NL Underrated Team Diamondbacks Rockies Astros Diamondbacks NL Underrated Team
    AL Underrated Player Robinson Cano Adam Lind Shin-Soo Choo Shin-Soo Choo AL Underrated Player
    NL Underrated Player Edwin Jackson Brad Hawpe Brian Wilson Jay Bruce NL Underrated Player












    Name Phil Allard Sean McNally Jeteupthemiddle Allie Steve Lombardi * denotes wild card
    AL East 1st Place Yankees Yankees Yankees Rays AL East 1st Place
    AL East 2nd Place Red Sox Red Sox* Red Sox* Yankees* AL East 2nd Place
    AL East 3rd Place Rays Rays Rays Red Sox AL East 3rd Place
    AL East 4th Place Orioles Orioles Blue Jays Orioles AL East 4th Place
    AL East 5th Place Blue Jays Blue Jays Orioles Blue Jays AL East 5th Place
    AL Central 1st Place Twins Tigers Tigers Tigers AL Central 1st Place
    AL Central 2nd Place Tigers Twins White Sox Twins AL Central 2nd Place
    AL Central 3rd Place White Sox White Sox Twins White Sox AL Central 3rd Place
    AL Central 4th Place Royals Royals Royals Royals AL Central 4th Place
    AL Central 5th Place Indians Indians Indians Indians AL Central 5th Place
    AL West 1st Place Angels Mariners Mariners Angels AL West 1st Place
    AL West 2nd Place Mariners Rangers Angels Rangers AL West 2nd Place
    AL West 3rd Place Athletics Angels Rangers Mariners AL West 3rd Place
    AL West 4th Place Rangers A’s A’s A’s AL West 4th Place
    NL East 1st Place Phillies Phillies Phillies Phillies NL East 1st Place
    NL East 2nd Place Braves Braves* Braves Braves NL East 2nd Place
    NL East 3rd Place Marlins Marlins Mets Marlins NL East 3rd Place
    NL East 4th Place Mets Nationals Marlins Mets NL East 4th Place
    NL East 5th Place Nationals Mets Nationals Nationals NL East 5th Place
    NL Central 1st Place Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals Cubs NL Central 1st Place
    NL Central 2nd Place Brewers Cubs Brewers Cardinals NL Central 2nd Place
    NL Central 3rd Place Reds Brewers Reds Brewers NL Central 3rd Place
    NL Central 4th Place Cubs Reds Cubs Reds NL Central 4th Place
    NL Central 5th Place Pirates Astros Astros Astros NL Central 5th Place
    NL Central 6th Place Astros Pirates Pirates Pirates NL Central 6th Place
    NL West 1st Place Giants Dodgers Dodgers Rockies NL West 1st Place
    NL West 2nd Place Rockies Rockies Giants* Giants* NL West 2nd Place
    NL West 3rd Place Dodgers Giants Rockies Dodgers NL West 3rd Place
    NL West 4th Place Diamondbacks Diamondbacks Padres Diamondbacks NL West 4th Place
    NL West 5th Place Padres Padres Diamondbacks Padres NL West 5th Place
    ALCS Winner Yankees Yankees Yankees Rays ALCS Winner
    ALCS Loser Red Sox Mariners Red Sox Angels ALCS Loser
    # of Games in ALCS 7 6 7 6 # of Games in ALCS
    NLCS Winner Cardinals Cardinals Cardinals Giants NLCS Winner
    NLCS Loser Giants Phillies Dodgers Phillies NLCS Loser
    # of Games in NLCS 6 6 6 7 # of Games in NLCS
    WS Winner Yankees Yankees Yankees Rays WS Winner
    WS Loser Cardinals Cardinals Dodgers Giants WS Loser
    # of Games in WS 6 6 6 6 # of Games in WS
    AL MVP Mark Teixeira Joe Mauer Alex Rodriguez Ben Zobrist AL MVP
    NL MVP Matt Holliday Albert Pujols Albert Pujols Joey Votto NL MVP
    AL CY John Lackey CC Sabathia Josh Beckett Jon Lester AL CY
    NL CY Tim Lincecum Roy Halladay Roy Halladay Roy Halladay NL CY
    AL ROY Scott Sizemore Carlos Santana Scott Sizemore Wade Davis AL ROY
    NL ROY Jason Heywood Jason Heyward Stephen Strasburg Alcides Escobar NL ROY
    AL Comeback PASS Ben Sheets PASS Chris Davis AL Comeback
    NL Comeback PASS David Wright PASS Conor Jackson NL Comeback
    AL Manager of the Year Don Wakamatsu Don Wakamatsu Joe Girardi Dave Anderson AL Manager of the Year
    NL Manager of the Year Bruce Bochy Bobby Cox Bruce Bochy Jim Tracy NL Manager of the Year
    AL Batting Robinson Cano Ichiro Suzuki Joe Mauer Derek Jeter AL Batting
    NL Batting Matt Holliday Pablo Sandoval Hanley Ramirez Pablo Sandoval NL Batting
    AL HR Alex Rodriguez Alex Rodriguez Carlos Pena Nelson Cruz AL HR
    NL HR Matt Holliday Albert Pujols Albert Puljols Ryan Howard NL HR
    AL ERA Zack Grienke Zack Grienke Zach Greinke Felix Hernandez AL ERA
    NL ERA Tim Lincecum Roy Halladay Roy Halladay Roy Halladay NL ERA
    AL K Zack Grienke Justin Verlander CC Sabathia Jon Lester AL K
    NL K Tim Lincecum Roy Halladay Tim Lincecum Yovani Gallardo NL K
    AL First Firing Ron Washington Bob Geren Manny Acta Ron Washington AL First Firing
    NL First Firing Jerry Manuel Dusty Baker Jerry Manuel Jerry Manuel NL First Firing
    AL Overrated Team PASS White Sox Twins Yankees AL Overrated Team
    NL Overrated Team PASS Cubs Brewers Mets NL Overrated Team
    AL Overrated Player PASS Josh Beckett Jacoby Ellsbury Ichiro Suzuki AL Overrated Player
    NL Overrated Player PASS Jose Reyes Jimmy Rollins David Wright NL Overrated Player
    AL Underrated Team PASS Orioles Chicago Rays AL Underrated Team
    NL Underrated Team PASS Braves Giants Rockies NL Underrated Team
    AL Underrated Player PASS Brian Roberts Robinson Cano Shin-Soo Choo AL Underrated Player
    NL Underrated Player PASS Ryan Zimmerman Troy Tulowitzki Andre Ethier NL Underrated Player

     

    .

    Old Upper Tank In Need Of LifeCall

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (1)

    Bummer – this is where O.G., the Ratio Man, used to hit them:

    h/t: ‘Duk.

    Greatest/Favorite Yankees Tournament – Div III, Round I

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (0)

    Click here for more on what this is about.

    And, click here to make your picks.

    Have fun – pick your favorites or pick who you thought was a better Yankee. It’s your choice. And, feel free to use the comments section here to discuss and debate the match-ups and your picks.

    Community Projections

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (13)

    I like to do community projections for the upcoming seasons, but I usually only get about 10 people to participate.  I figure here I might get some more.

    Basically, I will ask for specific stats on various players, and you guess how they will do during the season.  At the season’s end, we will compare the results.

    I usually like to this for newly acquired players, or more “fringy” type players, so for the 2010 season, I was considering Hughes, Granderson, Johnson and Vazquez.

    So what I need you to predict:

    Stats for pitchers: games, games started, innings pitched, runs, earned runs, hits, home runs, walks, strike outs, hits by pitch, wins, and losses

    Stats for batters: games, at bats, hits, doubles, triples, home runs, walks, strike outs, hits by pitch

    I would like to post the results for these four by Opening Day next weekend, so hopefully I can get enough projections by then.

    Note: Please clearly indicate which player you are predicting for.

    Note II: My excel prowess is very limited so please, please, please predict each of those stats instead of just saying ERA: 3.89 or whatever.

    Note III: If you want to do a community projection on another player, put it in the comments section and I will start a thread.

    Jobaction, Post Hughes Starter Coronation

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (1)

    Via Chad Jennings -

    For Joba Chamberlain, it’s the same old story, the same old question. Ninety-three games into his major-league career, he’s officially a starter-turned-reliever-turned-starter.

    Turned reliever.

    “I think when they stop talking about me is when I probably should worry,” Chamberlain said.

    “I think he’s a starter pitching out of the pen,” general manager Brian Cashman said. “When you have the exceptional ability like Joba has, they move ahead of their development plan. I’m just proud of the fact that this organization doesn’t forget that there’s still a development plan for the development of this guy. Just because he has the New York on the chest doesn’t mean you throw it out the door.”

    The Joba Rules were meant to protect Chamberlain’s arm for this season, when there would finally be no innings limit to consider. No question to answer.

    “I don’t think it was wasted,” Cashman said. “I think we finished off his development plan, and we have choices with him now. He can start if we need him to start, he can relieve if we need him to relieve. I don’t feel it’s a waste at all. I think we completed the mission on him and what will be, will be.”

    “He could have been in the minor leagues the past two years as a starter, not helping us win a championship,” manager Joe Girardi said. “Would he have been a full-fledged starter right now, none of us really knows.”

    Out of the bullpen, Chamberlain said he will go back to his old two-pitch combination. He might mix in a changeup or a curveball from time to time — “Just in case you need to fool somebody every once in a while,” he said — but he’ll lean on his fastball and slider. And the Yankees trust that his velocity will jump back into the upper-90s like it was when he pitched out of the bullpen in the past.

    “He seems more amped obviously, and you can be coming out of the pen,” Cashman said. “You can just let it fly.”

    “I can’t think about being a starter at this point,” [Joba] said. “For me to help this team right now, it’s being in the bullpen and trying to get guys out there. It’s unfair to my team to think about something else.”

    Chamberlain might not be a part of it, but the debate continues. Should he pitch long outings out of the rotation or short innings out of the bullpen?

    “I can say I’m happy with myself because I gave it everything I’ve got,” Chamberlain said. “Hughes just beat me. That’s it, the long and the short of it.”

    And, via Mark Feinsand -

    Chamberlain plans to return to the fastball-slider combination that made him so successful in the eighth-inning setup role in 2007 and ’08.

    “Those are the pitches we’re going to go to,” Chamberlain said yesterday. “We’re still going to have the other ones in case you have to fool someone every once in a while, but those worked out of the bullpen before so we’ll continue to go to those.”

    Chamberlain acknowledged his disappointment over losing out to Phil Hughes, who gave up one run in three innings Friday night, in the battle to be the No. 5 starter, but now that he’s back in the bullpen, he’s ready to take on that challenge and try to recapture the magic of his rookie season.

    “It could be worse; they could be talking about sending me down,” Chamberlain said. “You have to embrace the fact that they’re talking about me helping the team in some shape or form. It’s really nothing new for me. I’ll just click back into that other mode.”

    “When they stop talking about me, that’s when I should worry,” Chamberlain said. “I don’t know if it’s ever going to end, but we’ll see. I’m going to take this role and embrace it.”

    Chamberlain pitched in 116 innings in 2007, 100 innings in 2008, and in 164 innings in 2009, thereabouts, combining time in the minors, majors, and post-season. That’s his professional career to date. Let’s say he says in the pen all year this season. And, assume he doesn’t miss any time. What’s he going to throw in 2010 – maybe around 70-80 innings pitched?

    If that happens, and then the Yankees want to make him a starter in 2011, at (then) age 25, how many innings can you expect from him? It’s probably not going to be more than 170 innings – unless you want to take risk with his young arm. That’s an OK number of innings from a starting pitcher who makes 27-30 starts in a season. Actually, it’s a nice number.

    But, can you do that – meaning bump a young pitcher from 80 bullpen innings one season to 170 starter innings in the next season?

    Wel, that’s what the Yankees are pretty much asking Phil Hughes to do this season. So, I suppose, pretty soon…we’ll find out.

    Greatest/Favorite Yankees Tournament – Div II, Round I

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (0)

    Click here for more on what this is about.

    And, click here to make your picks.

    Have fun – pick your favorites or pick who you thought was a better Yankee. It’s your choice. And, feel free to use the comments section here to discuss and debate the match-ups and your picks.

    A-Rod’s Meeting With Feds Postponed

    Posted by on March 27th, 2010 · Comments (7)

    Here’s the story…first, via Michael Schmidt -

    Although [Alex Rodriguez] was scheduled to meet there on Friday with authorities who want to question him about his interactions with Anthony Galea, a Canadian-based doctor, the interview was postponed.

    In brief remarks to reporters, Rodriguez said he still planned to meet with federal authorities, although he did not know when or where the session would occur.

    “We’re going to continue to work together and cooperate and talk to the feds and Major League Baseball,” Rodriguez said, referring to himself and his lawyers.

    Federal investigators have been seeking to question Rodriguez about Galea for much of the last month but have yet to do so. They attempted to meet with him earlier this month in Florida, but Rodriguez put it off.

    In this instance, however, Rodriguez’s lawyers and the federal authorities jointly agreed to push back the meeting, according to several people who were briefed on what occurred but did not want to be identified discussing a continuing investigation.

    Those people said there was concern on the part of Rodriguez and his lawyers that the widespread publicity surrounding the Buffalo meeting could create a spectacle of sorts, something they would want to avoid.

    In his comments to reporters, Rodriguez seemed to confirm that sentiment, saying he wanted to keep a meeting with investigators simple “and not make it so much of a big show.” He said he hoped a meeting would take place before the season begins “so we can put this all behind us.”

    However, at one point, Rodriguez went so far as to say there never had been a meeting scheduled for Friday. That statement, in turn, was disputed by the people who spoke on condition of anonymity. Two of those people said that after The New York Times reported Tuesday that Rodriguez was going to have to travel to Buffalo, the Yankees confirmed that there would be a meeting with investigators in that city and gave Rodriguez permission to miss the team’s game on Friday night.

    In addition, Yankees Manager Joe Girardi told reporters on Wednesday that Rodriguez was likely to miss the Friday game. Instead, Rodriguez appeared at Steinbrenner Field at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, dressed in his baseball clothes and stretching.

    But sooner or later, he will meet with federal investigators and when he does it will create significant issues for him, the Yankees and Major League Baseball.

    Baseball’s investigators will be eager to follow up when the federal authorities are finished because they have their own questions for Rodriguez about Galea. All the Yankees and baseball officials know at this point is that last December, Rodriguez’s representatives told the Yankees that he had not been treated by Galea. That assertion has now been contradicted by Galea himself, who told The Associated Press in a recent interview that he had treated Rodriguez’s post-surgical hip last season with anti-inflammatories.

    In general, baseball’s investigators would have less leverage with Rodriguez than federal authorities, who have subpoena power and the implicit understanding that a witness must be truthful with them or risk legal penalties.

    And, next, via Michael Beebe -

    Baseball star Alex Rodriguez’s much-anticipated trip to Buffalo to meet with federal investigators Friday never happened. And the New York Yankees’ third baseman said it wasn’t scheduled anyway.

    Rodriguez, who was at spring training in Tampa, Fla., all day, told the New York Daily News he still doesn’t know when he will meet with authorities to discuss his relationship with Canadian doctor Anthony Galea.

    “Nothing has changed,” the Daily News quoted the player known as “A-Rod” as saying. “We’re going to continue to work together and cooperate, and we’re going to talk to the feds and Major League Baseball shortly.”

    Newsday said neither Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman nor manager Joe Girardi would comment Friday.

    A-Rod’s non-appearance in Buffalo disappointed a posse of photographers and reporters who waited in 20-degree weather outside the U.S. attorney’s office starting at 8 a.m. Friday.

    They waited outside the Delaware Avenue prosecutor’s office until shortly after 10 a.m., when James P. Kennedy Jr., chief of federal prosecutions, came out to tell them they were wasting their time waiting there. Kennedy refused to say more.

    The posse then shuffled over to the nearby law offices of Rodriguez’s local attorney, Patrick J. Brown, at 181 Franklin St.

    They watched as Brown, a short time later, left his office, walked to a parking ramp, got into his car and drove off. He declined to comment.

    There also were reports that A-Rod’s plane flew into Prior Aviation, then was sent on to Niagara Falls, but there were no A-Rod sightings.

    Finally, at day’s end, the media trooped into newly appointed U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr.’s office.

    After waiting out a news conference dealing with indictments of three people for financial frauds, the big question was popped.

    Where was A-Rod? Did prosecutors talk to him?

    “We have no comment,” Hochul replied. “We can’t confirm or deny any investigation.”

    A-Rod says that “nothing was ever scheduled” for a Friday meeting in Buffalo? Well, then, where was he on Friday and why did the Yankees hold up their line-up waiting for him to show up? And, why did Girardi tell the media on Wednesday that Rodriguez was likely to miss the Friday game? Sounds like A-Rod is lying about that one, no?

    So, the parties involved agreed to push this back because they wanted to avoid “a spectacle”? I think it’s a little late for that, right? And, if they’re really that concerned about it, the answer is simple: Have the feds drive (and not fly) down to Florida and meet Alex in a private conference room at Steinbrenner Field (in Tampa) before a game. The media is not going to tail the feds driving all the way down from Buffalo. And, having Alex duck into a private room at the Stein before a game can easily been done without much fuss.

    Is this a little out of the way? Sure. But, if you want to get it done outside of the paparazzi spotlight, it would work.

    In any event, in the meantime, the circus around this matter will continue. I’m sure the Yankees are just thrilled about that. Thanks Alex.

    The Risk Of A-Rod’s Day In Buffalo

    Posted by on March 26th, 2010 · Comments (15)

    A great summary on where A-Rod is at, right now, with this Galea mess, via Dan Herbeck

    The New York Yankees’ power-hitting third baseman, known as A-Rod, is scheduled to be interviewed by federal prosecutors and agents about his dealings with a Toronto physician who is the subject of a grand jury investigation here into performance-enhancing drugs.

    Five sources close to the case said Rodriguez is considered a witness — not a target — of the investigation. They told The Buffalo News that Rodriguez is one of about 10 professional athletes the feds plan to question about treatment they received from Dr. Anthony Galea.

    But the investigation still has the potential of causing problems for the athletes, including Rodriguez, who admitted publicly last year that he used performance-enhancing drugs from 2001 to 2003.

    “Investigations like this put professional athletes between a rock and a hard place,” said Paul Finkelman, a professor at Albany Law School who is an expert on legal issues involving sports and drugs.

    “If players lie, they could be criminally prosecuted for it. But if they tell the truth, and if they admit doing anything that is improper under the rules of baseball, they potentially could get into trouble with Major League Baseball.”

    The law professor was quick to point out that he has no way of knowing whether Rodriguez or any other player ever got substances from Galea that are banned by Major League Baseball.

    Tight secrecy surrounds Rodriguez’s planned visit. The U.S. attorney’s office and federal agents all declined to discuss it Thursday.

    “No comment on an ongoing investigation,” said James H. Robertson, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Buffalo office.

    Two of Rodriguez’s attorneys did not return calls seeking comment.

    A third attorney for Rodriguez, Patrick J. Brown of Buffalo, said he had no comment.

    So far, federal agents and prosecutors have made no allegation that A-Rod or any other athlete received performance-enhancing drugs from Galea.

    One person who was willing to comment on Galea’s dealings with A-Rod was Mark J. Mahoney, Galea’s Buffalo attorney.

    “I can tell you that [Galea] never gave performance-enhancing drugs to A-Rod or any other athlete. And the government knows it,” Mahoney said. “I think the government is trying to scare these athletes into saying what they want to hear.”

    Will federal agents share any of the information they obtain in the Galea case with Major League Baseball officials?

    Earl P. Gould, an FBI spokesman in Buffalo, said he could not comment.

    “We have no comment,” on that question or any aspect of the Galea investigation, Major League Baseball spokesman Pat Courtney said.

    Rodriguez is expected to talk with federal agents and prosecutors, not the grand jury, and if that’s the case, some observers think that it is a mistake.

    “If I represented A-Rod, I would tell him to insist on going right into the grand jury, rather than being interviewed by federal agents,” Finkelman said. “I would tell him to confine his statements to the grand jury room, because it is illegal to leak information that comes out in the grand jury.”

    To me, the biggest two points here are:

    …If players lie, they could be criminally prosecuted for it. But if they tell the truth, and if they admit doing anything that is improper under the rules of baseball, they potentially could get into trouble with Major League Baseball…

    …If I represented A-Rod, I would tell him to insist on going right into the grand jury, rather than being interviewed by federal agents. I would tell him to confine his statements to the grand jury room, because it is illegal to leak information that comes out in the grand jury…

    So, there you have it. If A-Rod lies, and is caught, he’s in trouble. And, if he tells the truth, there’s a great chance that it can be leaked without it being illegal. So, to me, at this point, I’m starting to think that Alex is in some hot water here. And, anyone who thinks this matter is going to be a non-issue for A-Rod and the Yankees is just hanging on to wishful thinking at this junction.

    Looking At The Yankees Opening Day Roster

    Posted by on March 26th, 2010 · Comments (10)

    Picking up from what I wrote back on New Year’s Day, I thought I would take another stab at projecting the Yankees Opening Day roster – based on what we know to date:

    Starting Line-Up:

    1. Derek Jeter SS
    2. Nick Johnson DH
    3. Mark Teixeira 1B
    4. Alex Rodriguez 3B
    5. Robinson Cano 2B
    6. Jorge Posada C
    7. Curtis Granderson CF
    8. Nick Swisher RF
    9. Brett Gardner LF

    Starting Rotation:

    CC Sabathia
    A.J. Burnett
    Andy Pettitte
    Javier Vazquez
    Phil Hughes

    Bullpen:

    Mariano Rivera
    Damaso Marte
    Joba Chamberlain
    David Robertson
    Alfredo Aceves
    Chan Ho Park
    Sergio Mitre

    Bench:

    Francisco Cervelli
    Ramiro Pena
    Randy Winn
    Marcus Thames

    I have to wonder if the seven-man bullpen is the way to go. What happens if Cano and Jeter go down in the same game? Cervelli to third, A-Rod to short and Pena to second? That might work for a game…but, not for a week. Maybe it makes sense to replace a guy like Mitre or Thames with a guy like Jerry Hairston or Willie Harris who can play all over the place? I thought Kevin Russo could be that guy in New York this year…but, the Yankees have already sent him down to Triple-A. Maybe he’ll be back soon…?

    And, of course, there’s only one lefty in this pen…which means the righties out there better be able to deal with lefty-hitters in a big spot…when you can’t call on Marte.

    Report: A-Rod To Claim That Galea Only Provided Platelet Replacement Therapy

    Posted by on March 26th, 2010 · Comments (1)

    Joel Sherman rings in on A-Rod and his meeting with the feds today -

    Alex Rodriguez returns to a danger zone today. He faces the feds in Buffalo, and they are interested in what he knows about Dr. Anthony Galea.

    A-Rod associates say there is nothing to worry about. This is about Galea, who is dealing with drug charges in his native Canada and an FBI investigation in the States involving illegal performance enhancers.

    A-Rod is expected to tell investigators he was directed to Galea by chiropractor Mark Lindsay, who was authorized to work with Rodriguez by Dr. Marc Philippon, who performed hip surgery on A-Rod on March 9, 2009.

    Rodriguez, The Post has learned, will claim he received five sessions of platelet replacement therapy, which he feels greatly accelerated his healing process and enabled him to get back to the majors by early May.

    Rodriguez is planning to insist he had no prior relationship with Galea and never received any illegal drugs such as HGH.

    If this is all true and verifiable, then this will be a minor inconvenience in the most serene, satisfying spring of Rodriguez’s Yankee life. The problem, obviously, is if Rodriguez is proved to be lying.

    Rodriguez, as he has all spring, refused to directly discuss Galea yesterday morning in our 20-minute chat. But he did talk broadly about how issues like this impact his ultimate baseball legacy.

    “In the past I said things, didn’t live up to them and disappointed people,” A-Rod said. “What I notice this time is that when I removed the emphasis from my legacy, from the results, and made it just about winning and enjoying the game, the energy all around me changed for the positive, especially in the clubhouse. And because of that I have never had more fun playing.”

    “I finally figured out to make the game the priority,” Rodriguez said. “Ultimately I am a baseball player. This is what I do best and what I should be concentrating on: Enjoy the moment, enjoy the game. Once I got that, I made it good for me, my team and my teammates.”

    Will this hold? Alex’s history screams to be cautious. He could say something dumb to the feds.

    Here’s more on this platelet replacement therapy procedure via Arthritis Today Magazine -

    The platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, procedure takes a small amount of a patient’s blood and rotates it in a centrifuge to separate red blood cells from platelets. Then the concentrated platelets are re-injected into the damaged area – elbows, knees, shoulders, hips and Achilles tendons. The platelets release growth factors that theoretically help the tissue recover, with the patients ideally improving within a few weeks.

    Physicians report that the demand for PRP has soared after pro golfer Tiger Woods received injections to accelerate healing after knee surgery. And two Pittsburgh Steelers, Troy Polamalu and Hines Ward, had the procedure before the team’s Super Bowl victory in 2009.

    But despite such positive personal stories and high-profile successes, some orthopaedic surgeons remain cautious about the spread of PRP, saying that not enough substantial research has been done on its effects to push it widely.

    A study published in January in the Journal of the American Medical Association, for example, one of the first rigorous tests of this technique, found that PRP injections were no better than placebo shots of salt water for patients with Achilles tendinopathy, a condition that causes pain just above the heel bone.

    “It’s clearly hyped too much,” says Stephen C. Weber, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon in Sacramento, Calif.

    But others have embraced PRP, saying science simply hasn’t caught up to what they are seeing in their patients.

    Platelet-rich plasma therapy represents “the beginning of a seismic change in orthopaedics,” says Rocco Monto, MD, an orthopaedic surgeon in West Tisbury, Mass. “Most of my colleagues have dipped their toes in the water and are finding early success.”

    The Scientific American also has a good feature on this procedure entitled: Is Platelet-Rich Plasma an Effective Healing Therapy?

    Yanks Plan To Distract Beat Writers Today

    Posted by on March 26th, 2010 · Comments (0)

    Joe Girardi, Brian Cashman and Jason Zillo, the Yankees media relations director, will be taking on some Yankees beat writers today in a game of paintball before tonight’s game against the Phillies.

    Pat Borzi and Chad Jennings have more on this event.

    I’ve read, in the past, as recent as the 1960′s, that teams used to cover the travel, food, and hotel costs for their beat writers. And, it was common practice for a beat writer to find a bottle of booze in his hotel room, on the first day in a new (road) city, compliments of the team. But, you can’t do those types of things today…

    So, this move, today, is a sharp one by the Yankees. Alex Rodriguez will be meeting with federal investigators in Buffalo this morning. And, by throwing the beat writers this bone, today, and keeping them busy, and giving them a “fun” story to write about, it takes away from some of the time that might be spent on A-Rod stories today.

    Paintball…it’s the next best thing to a free bottle of Jameson’s Blended Irish Whiskey…in situations like this…as far as the Yankees are probably concerned.

    Two Of A Kind Pitchers In Yankeeland

    Posted by on March 26th, 2010 · Comments (2)

    Check out these stat lines:

    W   L   WL%   ERA    G   GS  GF  IP     H    R   ER   HR  BB   SO  ERA+
    +---+---------------------------+---------+--+---+---+-----+-----+----+
    13  26  .333  5.56   90  61  15  362.3  443  244  224  44  121  220  78
    12  27  .308  5.74   92  70   6  373.0  465  274  238  46  118  153  76
    

    Can you guess who is the red one and who is the blue one? Well, here’s the answer:

    (more…)

    Yanks Hoping Hughes More Like Rags & Less Like Eiland

    Posted by on March 25th, 2010 · Comments (3)

    The story is in the numbers.

    Cashman & Girardi: Joba’s A Starter (But, Just In The Pen)

    Posted by on March 25th, 2010 · Comments (11)

    Via Anthony Rieber with a h/t to J Schil -

    “[Joba Chamberlain is] a starter in the bullpen,” [Brian] Cashman said in a telephone interview. “He can do both. He’s a starter who was just beaten out in the competition. That’s what we honestly believe, but we only had one spot.”

    “I think Joba could do either one, I really do,” [Joe] Girardi said. “But right now we think Phil’s a little bit ahead of him as a starter.”

    Makes me recall what Hank Stein said about Joba two years ago:

    Hank Steinbrenner knows what he wants and knows what’s best for the Yankees.

    That’s to get Joba Chamberlain out of the bullpen and into the starting rotation as quickly as possible. He’s 100 percent correct about that. But Steinbrenner also knows the Yankees have to be careful how they play their Joba hand.

    “There is no time frame, we can’t rush him back to the rotation, he has to be stretched out, you can’t just flip the switch and make him a starter,” Steinbrenner said yesterday from Tampa. “We’re going to play it by ear.”

    Steinbrenner said the Yankees’ brass is on board with the decision; it’s not just his opinion, but the opinion of all the decision makers, including GM Brian Cashman, manager Joe Girardi and pitching coach Dave Eiland.

    “I don’t think that was made clear,” Steinbrenner said of a published report that appeared yesterday. “We’re all on board with this. This isn’t just me.”

    Joba’s development was set back when the Yankees converted him to a reliever last year, Steinbrenner said. “But I wasn’t around then,” he added. He said he understands that decision enabled the Yankees to make the playoffs, but countered that if the plan is getting Chamberlain, Hughes and Kennedy rolling in the rotation as quickly as possible, the Yankees need to stick to the plan.

    Steinbrenner made it clear Chamberlain best suits the Yankees as a starter and every effort will be made to get Chamberlain to that point as quickly as possible, but it could take a while.

    He sees Chamberlain as the Yankees’ Josh Beckett.

    “I saw what Beckett did to us as a young pitcher,” he said, referring to Beckett’s dominance of the Yankees in the 2003 World Series, when Beckett pitched the Marlins to the world championship, posting a 1.10 ERA over 161/3 innings at the age of 23. “I’d rather have Joba be a Beckett-type than have him in the bullpen. We already have Mariano (Rivera) as the closer.”

    You know how “Wally Pipp” became synonymous for a guy losing his job in baseball due to inury? Well, pretty soon “Joba Chamberlain” is going to become synonymous with totally mismanaging a pitching prospect outside of abusing his arm. The Yankees really did a “wonderful” number with this one…allowing the kid to get a big head while not developing him in a manner to have his skills lead to production that would warrant his attitude. Basically, in Joba, now, the Yankees have a kid who thinks his great, and who’s not, and who has been back and forth between the pen and starting too many times in the last four years.

    Joba Chamberlain is not the next Josh Beckett. Instead, the Yankees have turned him into the next Scott Elarton.

    Hughes Takes The Fifth

    Posted by on March 25th, 2010 · Comments (11)

    Via Bryan Hoch:

    Joe Girardi announced the news here in Sarasota:

    “We evaluated the whole spring. I’m very excited with the improvement in his changeup. To me, that made a big difference in who he is. Our decision is for him to be the fifth starter, and all the other guys are competing to be in the bullpen.”

    …all the other guys are competing to be in the bullpen…

    Hmm…

    Gaudin…Gauguin

    Posted by on March 25th, 2010 · Comments (2)

    The Yankees have released pitcher Chad Gaudin, who was one of five candidates for the fifth starter spot.

    A-Rod To Buffalo…Go For The Feds, Stay For The Wings

    Posted by on March 25th, 2010 · Comments (2)

    Via Pat Borzi -

    Knowing the questions were coming about his coming interview with federal investigators in the Anthony Galea investigation, Alex Rodriguez stopped in front of his locker early Wednesday afternoon.

    Predictably, Rodriguez had little to say.

    “If there are no baseball questions, I have nothing to talk about,” Rodriguez said. When someone did ask a baseball question — namely, if he would be playing Thursday in Sarasota against Baltimore — Rodriguez smiled, pointed at his questioner and said yes.

    Rodriguez is expected to fly to Buffalo, possibly Thursday night, to meet Friday with prosecutors from the United States attorney’s office in that city. Investigators are trying to determine if Galea, a Canadian-based doctor, distributed performance-enhancing drugs in the United States.

    “From what I read and understand, we may not have him on Friday,” [Joe] Girardi said. “And that’s it. That’s all I’ve got.”

    So Girardi’s plans to play Rodriguez three consecutive days were dashed for the second time in less than a week. Rodriguez played Friday and Saturday, and he was in the lineup for Sunday’s game, which was canceled because of rain. He started Wednesday night against the Washington Nationals at Steinbrenner Field, and Girardi had planned to use him Thursday and Friday.

    Girardi said he had not thought much about how disruptive Rodriguez’s latest off-field issue might be to Rodriguez or the team.

    “There are no accusations,” Girardi said. “It seems to be about somebody else. It’s disruptive in that he won’t be here Friday, but beyond that, I’m not too concerned.

    “I’ll sit down and talk to him a little bit about it, but I won’t get into a whole lot of details because he’s probably not able to give me a lot of details. That’s the way the system works.”

    Whenever I hear Buffalo, it makes me think of Mark Ruffalo – who I always confuse with Vincent Gallo…probably because he starred in a movie called Buffalo ’66…which, of course, brings us back to…Buffalo.

    And, then, of course, there’s Chief Mean Buffalo…

    Ah, Sunday mornings on WPIX…back in the day.

    Greatest/Favorite Yankees Tournament – Div I, Round I

    Posted by on March 24th, 2010 · Comments (6)

    Click here for more on what this is about.

    And, click here to make your picks.

    Have fun – pick your favorites or pick who you thought was a better Yankee. It’s your choice. And, feel free to use the comments section here to discuss and debate the match-ups and your picks.

    Slacking With The Enemy

    Posted by on March 24th, 2010 · Comments (12)

    Nick Swisher, it’s the new Danny Tartabull.

    Doc Not So Gooden

    Posted by on March 24th, 2010 · Comments (5)

    This just in – Doc Gooden is an idiot.

    Actually, he’s clearly a troubled person. This is so sad.

    And, The 5th Spot In The Yanks Starting Rotation Goes To…

    Posted by on March 24th, 2010 · Comments (23)

    Ah…Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Sergio Mitre and Alfredo Aceves…who will win the coveted last spot in the Yankees 2010 starting rotation?

    Well, I would be shocked if it’s Sergio Mitre…because that means Hughes and Chamberlain, in some combination, go to the bullpen or the minors. Either both go to the pen, or one goes with the other heading to Triple-A, or maybe they both get sent down to Scranton? And, I find any of that unlikely to happen…now.

    Alfredo Aceves? I have little doubt that he can’t be a somewhat useful fifth starter for a big league team. Heck, I’d rather give him 30 starts, at this stage of his career, than guys like Livan Hernandez, Brian Moehler or Kyle Davies. But, I stress useful here so that it’s not confused with “great” or even “very good.” Yet, I just have a hunch that General Joe is more likely to use Aceves as a trusted long man out of the pen (with Mitre being a long-man in mop-up situations) – at least to start the 2010 season.

    Really, this “battle” is all about Chamberlain and Hughes. And, most seem to think that Hughes will be announced as the winner…very soon.

    So, here’s my prediction: If Phil Hughes is selected to be the Yankees 5th starter, to begin this season, one of three things will happen – and two of them are bad. Maybe Hughes will hold his own and make 30 starts in 2010? If he does, that would be good. But, I think the odds are greater that he will get exposed as a starter (due to his lacking a third quality pitch and the abililty to get lefties out) and/or he will get injured and end up on the disabled list – as often seems to be the case when he’s asked to carry the load of starting for a full season.

    Now, Chamberlain, on the other hand, is another story. Is he too confident? Is he delusional? Is he too head-strong? We’ve heard this type of stuff in the past. Also, is he already past his peak – even though he’s just 24-years old? Hey, it’s happened in the past with pitchers. Granted, I’m not saying that he’s going to be terrible now…just never again as great as he was in 2007.

    In the end, factoring all this all in…regarding the fifth spot in the Yankees 2010 rotation…at this junction what I feel most sure about is: Whomever gets the job to start this season probably won’t be the guy who owns it for most of the season. And, the player who will make the most starts for the Yankees following Sabathia, Burnett, Pettitte and Vazquez is “To Be Determined.” And, that goes for now, next week, three weeks from now, and maybe some time after that as well.

    Pardon Me While I Have A Strange Scooteresque Interlude

    Posted by on March 24th, 2010 · Comments (4)

    It was 20 years ago today that the woman who would later become my bride and I went on our first date. Dinner at Lum Chin Inn on Hylan Boulevard followed by drinks at Pennyfeathers on New Dorp Lane – both of which now being long since gone.

    When we went on that first date, I did something that many might find bizarre. But, wanting to be different and being a baseball nut, it made sense to me. I took one of my old baseball magazines from the 1970′s and cut out a picture of Pete Rose. After picking up my beloved to start our evening, as we were in my car, I handed her the picture of Pete Rose and said “Here, I wanted to give you a Rose on this special night.” That should have been a tip-off as to what she was getting herself into with me. But, that didn’t scare her off – and, thirty-one months after that first date, we were married.

    She’s hung in there ever since…having to endure all of my baseball fanaticism. And, trust me, it’s been a lot. A whole heap of “a lot” and then some.

    For that, at the least, today, she’s owed this public “Happy Anniversary!” It’s been a wonderful – and fast! – twenty years…jam-packed with all sort of good stuff and adventures. And, I’m looking forward to another twenty – and then twenty more after that. (I figure by the time I’m 87, she’ll finally have reached her limit and had enough of me. Sixty years of having to listen to me prattle on about baseball is more than enough for anyone to have to deal with, right?)

    Watch Out Kim Jones

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2010 · Comments (5)

    Those are Lester Hayes-like footsteps that you’re hearing…via the Lehigh Valley Express-Times

    Meredith Marakovits got the promotion from Triple-A to the major leagues.

    The Northampton native and former TV 2 Sports reporter and member of the IronPigs TV Network broadcast team, accepted a postition today at ESPN 1050 AM radio as a beat reporter for the New York Yankees. Marakovits served as a co-host of the IronPigs pregame show and as a sideline reporter for the Lehigh Valley franchise’s games.

    Marakovits, who starred in volleyball at Central Catholic High School and La Salle University, is also leaving her position with Sports Radio 950 AM in Philadelphia.

    Would Michael Kay pull some strings, down the line, to get Marakovits into the YES fold? I dunno…but, anything is possible.

    Reachable Yankee Milestones

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2010 · Comments (3)

    Here are some milestones several Yankee players may reach during the 2010 season.  Obviously, some are more reachable than others.

    • Alex Rodriguez–600 home runs (17 away), 300 stolen bases (3 away)
    • Robinson Cano–1000 hits (25 away), 500 runs (94 away), 100 home runs (13 away)
    • Jorge Posada–1500 hits (12 away), 1000 RBIs (36 away)
    • Mark Teixeira–250 home runs (8 away)
    • Brett Gardner–100 hits (4 away), 50 stolen bases (11 away)
    • Curtis Granderson–500 runs (65 away)
    • Nick Swisher–500 runs (63 away), 150 home runs (17 away), 500 RBI (94 away)
    • Derek Jeter–250 home runs (26 away)

     

    • Andy Pettitte–250 wins (21 away)
    • CC Sabathia–150 wins (14 away)
    • Javier Vazquez–150 wins (8 away), 2500 strike outs (247 away)
    • Mariano Rivera–550 saves (24 away)

    I found these by simply looking at the stats page on mlb.com, which means I’m probably missing a couple–especially those All Time Yankee list milestones.

    Gaudin On Waivers

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2010 · Comments (19)

    The Yankees have placed Chad Gaudin on waivers. So, for now, he is a hanging Chad.

    The O’Neill Shadow

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2010 · Comments (2)

    How many men have played right field for the Yankees since Paul O’Neill retired? Here’s the answer – with the stats being those generated when the player appeared in a game as a right fielder:

    Rk Player #Matching   PA HR RBI BA OBP SLG
    1 Bobby Abreu 364 Ind. Games 1601 41 238 .294 .376 .460
    2 Gary Sheffield 288 Ind. Games 1272 61 221 .287 .380 .506
    3 Raul Mondesi 156 Ind. Games 651 25 81 .251 .326 .453
    4 Nick Swisher 130 Ind. Games 549 25 73 .243 .366 .477
    5 Bubba Crosby 79 Ind. Games 106 1 6 .238 .267 .317
    6 Melky Cabrera 66 Ind. Games 211 3 25 .308 .385 .401
    7 Bernie Williams 58 Ind. Games 219 8 29 .289 .321 .485
    8 Shane Spencer 55 Ind. Games 192 3 16 .256 .363 .388
    9 John Vander Wal 49 Ind. Games 159 3 13 .274 .327 .432
    10 Ruben Sierra 43 Ind. Games 154 6 20 .229 .292 .421
    11 Karim Garcia 38 Ind. Games 112 3 15 .260 .304 .385
    12 Juan Rivera 37 Ind. Games 105 6 17 .323 .369 .583
    13 Eric Hinske 22 Ind. Games 64 7 10 .214 .313 .607
    14 Aaron Guiel 21 Ind. Games 49 4 7 .267 .327 .556
    15 Shelley Duncan 20 Ind. Games 40 2 6 .270 .282 .432
    16 Gerald Williams 17 Ind. Games 6 0 0 .000 .167 .000
    17 David Dellucci 16 Ind. Games 50 1 4 .182 .265 .273
    18 Kevin Thompson 15 Ind. Games 39 1 5 .200 .368 .333
    19 Xavier Nady 13 Ind. Games 53 1 6 .255 .283 .412
    20 Matt Lawton 12 Ind. Games 38 2 4 .125 .263 .313
    21 Kenny Lofton 10 Ind. Games 25 0 2 .333 .440 .333
    22 Jerry Hairston 9 Ind. Games 12 0 2 .100 .250 .200
    23 Hideki Matsui 7 Ind. Games 31 1 5 .310 .355 .414
    24 Terrence Long 7 Ind. Games 26 0 1 .125 .192 .167
    25 Justin Christian 5 Ind. Games 7 0 0 .000 .143 .000
    26 Tony Womack 4 Ind. Games 13 0 0 .231 .231 .231
    27 Marcus Thames 4 Ind. Games 12 1 2 .250 .250 .583
    28 Bronson Sardinha 4 Ind. Games 5 0 0 .200 .200 .200
    29 Russ Johnson 3 Ind. Games 1 0 0 .000 .000 .000
    30 Freddy Guzman 3 Ind. Games 3 0 0 .333 .333 .333
    31 Craig Wilson 2 Ind. Games 5 0 0 .000 .000 .000
    32 Mike Vento 2 Ind. Games 2 0 0 .000 .000 .000
    33 Kevin Reese 2 Ind. Games 5 0 0 .500 .600 .500
    34 Curtis Pride 2 Ind. Games 8 1 1 .125 .125 .500
    35 Enrique Wilson 1 Ind. Games 4 0 1 .250 .250 .250
    36 Chris Latham 1 Ind. Games 1 0 0 1.000 1.000 1.000
    37 Johnny Damon 1 Ind. Games 2 0 1 .500 .500 1.000
    Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Play Index Tool Used
    Generated 3/23/2010.

    .

    I wonder if they’ll stop the game this season, and have a ceremony on the field, when Nick Swisher passes Raul Mondesi on this list?

    Friday Is A-Rod’s Day With The Feds

    Posted by on March 23rd, 2010 · Comments (0)

    Well, it took three weeks (or so)…but, finally, this meeting is going to take place. Via Michael Schmidt

    Alex Rodriguez is scheduled to meet on Friday with federal investigators who want to know about his interactions with Anthony Galea, the Canadian-based doctor whose activities are being scrutinized by a number of federal agencies in the United States.

    Those authorities are seeking to establish whether Galea has distributed performance-enhancing drugs in this country. The meeting with Rodriguez is expected to take place in Buffalo, according to two people briefed on the matter who did not want to be publicly identified discussing a continuing investigation.

    Rodriguez, who has postponed at least one previous meeting with investigators, acknowledged three weeks ago that he had been contacted by them and told reporters then that he would cooperate.

    At the time, Rodriguez declined to say whether he had been treated by Galea, saying that he would provide that answer “within time.” However, Galea has since said in an interview with The Associated Press that he treated Rodriguez in 2009 for an inflamed hip, giving him anti-inflammatory drugs.

    Last week, Rodriguez’s lawyers met with prosecutors from the United States attorney’s office in Buffalo, which is leading the Galea investigation, according to the two people briefed on the matter. Typically, lawyers use such meetings to learn what the authorities want to ask their client and if their client is being viewed by investigators as a subject of the inquiry or a witness.

    And, more from George King -

    Should Rodriguez indeed meet with the FBI on Friday, he would miss at least a day of Yankees camp and potentially a scheduled night game against the Phillies. That could constitute at least some level of distraction for the Yankees.

    The Yankees also might believe that Rodriguez has violated his contract since he evidently was at least treated by Galea, who is not a Yankees-affiliated doctor. It’s unlikely, however, that the club will seek to void Rodriguez’s deal or hit him with any serious punishment.

    Jay Reisinger, a partner at Farrell, Reisinger and Stallings law firm in Pittsburgh, confirmed to The Post that he and James B. Sharp are Rodriguez’s representatives. Reisinger declined to comment further.

    It’s good to hear that A-Rod is being viewed as a witness, and not as a subject, of the investigation. Now, Alex should just make sure that he tells the truth, and the whole truth, to the investigators – to make sure it stays that way.

    John Raynor

    Posted by on March 22nd, 2010 · Comments (5)

    When the Yankees traded Brian Bruney for Jamie Hoffmann, they passed on John Raynor (who they could have chosen, instead). And, the Pittsburgh Pirates then quickly took Raynor – who, like Hoffmann, is a right-handed batting outfielder. More on that from back in December:

    The Pittsburgh Pirates today announced they have selected outfielder John Raynor off the Florida Marlins’ Triple-A roster (New Orleans) in the Major League Phase of the Rule Five Draft. The announcement was made by Pirates Senior Vice President, General Manager Neal Huntington.

    In 2009, the 25-year-old Raynor hit .257 (115-for-447) with 24 doubles, two triples, six home runs, 36 RBI, 63 runs scored and 19 stolen bases during his first season with New Orleans.

    “John Raynor is an athletic outfielder, with some threat at the plate,” said Huntington. “He has the speed and defensive capability to play all three outfield positions and has the upside to project as a potential everyday outfielder in the future. He will compete for a bench role in spring training.”

    After being selected by the Marlins in the ninth round of the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, Raynor made his professional debut with Jamestown and was named to the New York-Penn League All-Star team that season after hitting .286 with 21 stolen bases, which ranked third in the league.

    In his first full season of professional baseball in 2007, he was named the South Atlantic League’s Most Valuable Player after hitting .333 with 13 home runs, 57 RBI and 54 stolen bases with Greensboro. He was also named Florida’s Minor League Player-of-the-Year that season while being named to the South Atlantic League All-Star team and to Baseball America’s Low Class-A All-Star team.

    Raynor paced the Marlins minor league system with 104 runs scored and 48 stolen bases in 2008 while also hitting .312 with the Carolina Mudcats. He also ranked fourth among Florida farmhands in hits (141), a .402 slugging percentage and 62 walks while being tabbed by Baseball America as the “Fastest Baserunner” in the Southern League, where he was named to both the mid-season and post-season All-Star teams.

    So, how is Raynor doing this Spring? To date, he’s played in 12 games, come to the plate 27 times, and has a BA/OBP/SLG line of .385/.407/.692 – which ain’t too shabby.

    There’s a very good chance that the Yankees made the wrong call on this one.

    At This Point, He Couldn’t Hit The Side Of A Barn With A Pie

    Posted by on March 22nd, 2010 · Comments (6)

    A week later and things, today, are still bad for A.J. Burnett this Spring.

    In total, his “official” Spring stats are as follows: 8 IP, 14 hits, 8 walks and 8 earned runs allowed. He’s thrown 124 pitches with just 70 of them being strikes.

    He should get one, or maybe two, more turns this Spring. And, after that, he’ll be facing the Red Sox up at Fenway Park (in a real game). Let’s hope he figures it out by that time.

    Go Back West, Jamie Hoffmann

    Posted by on March 22nd, 2010 · Comments (7)

    Via Chad Jennings -

    Just got to Clearwater in time to hear that Rule 5 pick Jamie Hoffmann has cleared waivers and been returned to the Dodgers.

    Here’s what the Yankees had said about Hoffman when they basically traded Brian Bruney to get him -

    “He’s a big, physical outfielder with big league experience,” said Yankees pro scouting director Billy Eppler. “Our scouts saw some good things in him, including good defensive ability and a good arm. He runs well for his size, we’ve got him as a 55 runner [scouts use a 20-to-80 scale to grade each tool; 50 is considered major league average] at 6-foot-3, 235. Kevin Long, our hitting coordinator, looked at him on video and thinks there’s a foundation there hitting-wise.”

    Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said that Hoffmann will compete for the final roster spot for the World Series champions. Hoffmann was also picked in the 2003 NHL draft by the Carolina Hurricanes. “He’s got a hockey mentality, a Minnesota kid,” Cashman said. “A very athletic, hard-nosed outfielder.”

    I guess this is good news for Marcus Thames? So, does this now make the trade, in net, Brian Bruney for Thames?

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