May 2008 - Baseball Wiretap
Baldelli Eyeing Return To Rays
Rocco Baldelli is playing baseball again and is hoping to return to the Rays at some point, according to The Associated Press. He played in his second-consecutive extended spring training game on Saturday, going hitless in five at-bats. Baldelli has been sidelined since May 2007 because of lingering hamstring problems and a chronic fatigue issue. Tampa placed him on the 60-day disabled list in spring training. "I'm happy with how things have gone," said Baldelli. "Trying to get some timing at the plate right now and just the fact I can get out there and run around and swing. There's not much more I can ask for at this point." He was selected sixth overall in the 2000 draft.
Phillies Grab NL East Lead With Win Over Marlins
The Phillies grabbed the lead in the NL East with a dominating win over the Marlins on Friday night, according to MLB.com. Philadelphia won 12-3, despite trailing 3-0 after the first inning. The Phillies scored seven runs in the second to grab hold of the game and never let go. Brett Myers struck out eleven batters, settling down despite the rough first inning. Chase Utley blasted a pair of home runs, giving him eighteen for the season. The Phillies, who have now won five-straight, hold a .5 game lead over the Marlins in the division.
Posada May Return Next Week
Yankees' catcher Jorge Posada could return to the team next week, according to The New York Post. Posada has been out since April 26 because of rotator-cuff tendinitis and could be in the lineup as early as Tuesday. "I am not anticipating it, but I am not 100 percent ruling it out of my mind," Manager Joe Girardi said. He has continued to look good during his rehab stint in Tampa.
Joba To Make First Start Tuesday
Pitcher Joba Chamberlain has a spot in the Yankees' rotation and a date for his first start: Tuesday night against the Blue Jays. Manager Joe Girardi said the 22-year-old will be limited to 65 or 70 pitches when he takes the mound at Yankee Stadium, according to an Associated Press report on Friday.
Giants Turn Triple Play, Lose Ball, Lose Game
Somehow, those involved lost track of their triple-play ball. John Bowker entrusted the souvenir ball to bullpen catcher Taira Uematsu, also the translator for Keiichi Yabu. But, as it turns out, Uematsu had no idea that ball was the special one and he played catch with it, thus the ball got mixed up with all the others. ?I tried,? Bowker said with a grin. This one will have to stay in their memories and on the highlight reels. The Giants turned a triple play in the eighth inning of their 7-3, 13-inning loss to the Padres on Friday night, as reported by the Associated Press.
Red Sox Place Dice-K On 15-Day DL
The Red Sox placed pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka on the 15-day disabled list Friday after an MRI exam revealed a mild strain of his right rotator cuff, according to an Associated Press report.
How Much Are Last Year's Free Agents Worth Right Now?
It is not uncommon for free agent classes to immediately appear overpaid, but due to combinations of injuries and under-achievements, last year's class has been dreadful during the first two months of 2008. * Player: Rank, season FIC, Reina Value (current salary, 'deserving' salary) 10. Andruw Jones: 995th, -13, -97% ($14.73 million, deserving $390k) Even beyond his performance, signing Andruw Jones created a situation where either a talented player (Matt Kemp, Andre Ethier) or an expensive player (Juan Pierre, Jones) would become a spare part. Jones is batting .165/.273/.271 with just two homers and has been one of the absolute worst performers in the entire MLB. He will be on the DL for the next four to six weeks following knee surgery and, hopefully for the Dodgers, he will come back rededicated to baseball. 9. Jorge Posada: 616th, 11, -97% ($13.1 million, deserving $406k) Posada's shoulder has forced him to the sidelines for all but 18 games this season. He has hit well when healthy, batting .302/.333/.476. 8. Alex Rodriguez: 296th, 35, -91% ($28 million, deserving $2.55 million) Rodriguez has been battling a hamstring this season and has spent time on the disabled list. In the first year of his 10-year deal, Rodriguez has an OPS of .870; he has had a .900 OPS or better in all but two of his full MLB seasons. 7. Mike Lowell: 374th, 29, -88% ($12.5 million, deserving $1.45 million) Like A-Rod, Lowell already has a trip to the DL on his belt, and his OPS has dropped nearly 100 points from last season. Fortunately, the Red Sox were able to come to terms with Lowell on a short-term contract over the winter. 6. Torii Hunter: 231st, 44, -76% ($16.5 million, deserving $4 million) After a hot start when he finished April with four homers while hitting .317/.367/.545, Hunter has two homers and a .705 OPS in May. 5. Eric Gagne: 270th, 38, -69% ($10 million, deserving $3.125 million) The Brewers very clearly had a better closer last season. Gagne has a 9.45 ERA during the month of May and a 6.98 ERA for the season. His BB/9 rate is at 7.45, inexcusably high and light years away from the 1.75 he had in 2002. 4. Carlos Silva: 183rd, 50, -39% ($8.25 million, deserving $5 million) Silva has a 5.14 ERA and a K/9 of 3.42, proving that he is a glorified number five starter making number three starter money. Opposing batters have an .843 OPS against Silva, but he does have a 3.21 ERA at Safeco Field. 3. Aaron Rowand: 146th, 57, -34% ($9.6 million, deserving $6.383 million) The Giants are certainly content with the initial returns of Aaron Rowand as he's hitting .341/.410/.545; all three are career highs. He also has seven homers, which is a slight drop in his AB/HR rate from 22.7 to 25.1 but less of a drop than expected given the adjustment from Citizens Bank Park to AT&T Park. 2. Mariano Rivera: 67th, 73, -27% ($15 million, deserving $11 million) Rivera is having one of his most perfect seasons in an almost always perfect career. He has a 0.39 ERA (previous low is 1.38 back in 2005) and has walked just one batter in 23 innings, giving him an improbable K/BB rate of 21.00. 1. Francisco Cordero: 119th, 62, -9% ($8.625 million, deserving $7.827 million) Cordero's K/9 has fallen from 12.22 to 10.65, but his ERA has improved from 2.98 down to 2.28. The success is unlikely to be sustained as his .221 BABIP eventually rises towards his career average of .314.
Mulder Will Retire Before Having Another Surgery
Cardinals' pitcher Mark Mulder would rather retire than undergo yet another surgery on his injured left shoulder, according to The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He's already had two surgeries, and team doctor George Paletta doesn't believe a third is necessary. "I told (Paletta) later, 'If you would have said something was torn, I would have got up and I would have walked out,'" Mulder said. "Then I would have left. ... I wouldn't do it. I'll take it to the house before that happens. I'm done. There's no way they're going back in there."
Mets Interested In Millar, Bay And Nady
The New York Mets are reportedly interested in first baseman Kevin Millar and outfielders Jason Bay and Xavier Nady, according to The Philadelphia Daily News. General Manager Omar Minaya is interested in fortifying the team's roster with first baseman, leftfielders and righthanded relieve pitchers.
Cardinals Send Struggling Duncan To Minors
The St. Louis Cardinals optioned Chris Duncan to Triple-A Memphis and recalled outfielder Joe Mather on Friday, according to The Associated Press. Duncan is batting .213 this month and .252 with four home runs for the season. He hit 21 home runs last year and 22 the year before.
Umpire Says Replay Coming To MLB Parks
A liaison between Major League Baseball and its umpires claims that instant replay is coming to MLB parks.
Guillen Says He?s Ready To Lead Team
Just hours after an outburst in the clubhouse, Royals' outfielder Jose Guillen claims he's ready to step up and lead the young team.
Pedro Up For Tuesday Start
Mets' starter Pedro Martinez appears ready to pitch for the team on Tuesday against the Giants.
Beckham Expects To Be In Draft's Top Two
Shortstop Tim Beckham expects to be one of the first two players taken in Major League Baseball's June 5 draft.
Mariners Looking To Add Hatteberg
The Mariners are reportedly looking to add Scott Hatteberg to their roster as Richie Sexson continues to slump at first base.
Is Cuban A Viable Suitor For Cubs?
Mavericks' owner Mark Cuban could be more of a viable suitor than initially believed as the sale of the Cubs heads towards a possible resolution.
Posada Tests Shoulder With Throws
Yankees' catcher Jorge Posada tested his injured shoulder with throws to both second and third base during a pregame workout on Thursday.
Rays Place Percival On DL
The Tampa Bay Rays today placed right-handed pitcher Troy Percival on the 15-day disabled list with a left hamstring strain.
A's Activate Chavez; Place Big Hurt on 15-Day DL
The A's activated Eric Chavez on Thursday and put him in the starting lineup as the DH.
Mets' Alou Expects To Return Next Week
Outfielder Moises Alou expects to return to the lineup for the Mets next week.
Percival Could Be Headed To DL
Rays' reliever Troy Percival could be headed to the disabled list because of a bum left hamstring.
Guillen Snaps After Royals 10th-Straight Loss
Veteran outfielder Jose Guillen snapped on Wednesday night after the Royals lost their tenth-straight game.
Pedro Impressive In Class A Start
Pitching for St. Lucie on Wednesday night, Pedro Martinez gave up two runs and four hits in an impressive rehab start.
Dice-K To Have MRI On Shoulder
Daisuke Matsuzaka will visit with team doctors and undergo an MRI on his "fatigued" shoulder in Boston.
BoSox Will Wait To Extend Young Players
The Boston Red Sox will not follow suit with the current trend of signing young players to long-term deals.
Twins' Hernandez Could Be On Block
Livan Hernandez could be on the trading block as Minnesota doesn't feel his value will be any higher than it is right now.
Rangers Looking To Move Blalock?
The Rangers could look to deal Hank Blalock if things go south this season.
Bret Boone Retires For Good
After fourteen Major League seasons, infielder Bret Boone is calling it quits for good.
Report: Sosa To Retire After 2009 WBC
According to reports on ESPN.com, Sammy Sosa plans to retire after the next World Baseball Classic.