April 2020 - Baseball Wiretap

CC Sabathia: Shohei Ohtani Is 'Best Player I've Ever Seen'

Apr 30, 2020 8:38 AM

CC Sabathia had high praise for Shohei Ohtani recently on the Uninterrupted's R2C2 podcast.

"He's the best baseball player I've ever seen in my life," Sabathia said of the Los Angeles Angels' two-way star.

"Are you kidding me? [He] can hit the ball 900 feet and throw the ball 99 mph off the mound," Sabathia continued. "Who else is doing that? Who else is doing that, bro? There's nobody else doing that at the big league level."

Manny Randhawa/MLB

Tags: Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Misc Rumor

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Baseball Hall Of Fame Postpones Induction Ceremony Until 2021

Apr 30, 2020 8:34 AM

This year's Baseball Hall of Fame class will have to wait another year for their moment in Cooperstown.

The Hall of Fame announced Wednesday that it has canceled the July 26 induction ceremony because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The 2020 class will be included at next year'sfestivities -- along with any additional new choices -- on July 25, 2021.

Derek Jeter and Larry Walker were to be inducted with catcher Ted Simmons and the late Marvin Miller.

Next year's group of first-time eligible players has no odds-on favorites. Torii Hunter and Mark Buehrle are among the players who will be on the BBWAA ballot for the first time.

Associated Press

Tags: Misc Rumor

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Rays Reportedly Plan Furloughs For Some Full-Time Staffers

Apr 30, 2020 8:30 AM

The Tampa Bay Rays are reportedly the first Major League Baseball team known to plan furloughs of some full-time employees because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The club's temporary cost-cutting measures will take effect on Saturday.

Staff was informed of the plan by principal owners Stuart Sternberg and team presidents Matt Silverman and Brian Auld earlier this week. The Tampa Bay Times reported the furloughs are believed to involve less than half the club's 400-to-500 full-time employees.

Associated Press

Tags: Tampa Bay Rays, Misc Rumor

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Yadier Molina Open To New Team If Cardinals Aren't Option

Apr 30, 2020 8:26 AM

Yadier Molina wants to play beyond this year, but his three-year, $60 million contract with the St. Louis Cardinals expires after the 2020 season.

Molina, 38, said before the coronavirus pandemic that he only wanted to continue his career if it was with the Cardinals. That has now changed.

"I previously said that if it wasn't with St. Louis, that I would go home. If we were unable to come to an extension agreement, that I would retire. But the situation with this pandemic has changed everything. Right now, I'm thinking of playing two more years," Molina said.

"Obviously, St. Louis is my first option. But if they don't sign me, then I'm willing to go into free agency. This situation has changed my mentality, and all I want to do is play."

Molina wants to continue exploring an extension with the Cardinals that reaches through 2022, but he is open to options elsewhere if no agreement is reached.

"Before this terrible situation happened, I thought there was a 50/50 chance that the 2020 campaign would be my last. Not now," the catcher said. "The most important thing right now is people's health and getting past this pandemic. It's a very difficult situation. After we accomplish that, after we're able to start the 2020 season, then I'd like to have that conversation."

Marly Rivera/ESPN

Tags: St. Louis Cardinals, Free Agent Rumor, Misc Rumor

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MLB Could Start Season By July 4th

Apr 29, 2020 9:51 AM

Major League Baseball is searching for ways to start the 2020 season and a report indicates that July 4th could be a key date.

"The most realistic time range for Opening Day — somewhere between mid-June and July 4, in the view of most officials — would allow for an 80- to 100-game regular season, with the schedule running through October," Ken Rosenthal reports. "An expanded postseason at neutral sites might follow, with the World Series ending in late November or early December."

MLB's owners and players both have the goal of maximizing the number of games in the season and thus maximize revenues.

Ken Rosenthal/The Athletic

Tags: Misc Rumor

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Pirates Temporarily Suspend Retirement Benefits

Apr 29, 2020 9:48 AM

The Pittsburgh Pirates are suspending retirement benefits for members of the club's baseball operations staff amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Ben Cherington says the team has been searching for ways to find savings with the 2020 season on hold. The temporary suspension of retirement benefits is part of an effort to avoid any potential personnel cutbacks.

"We did identify the retirement contributions at least temporarily as an area where we might find some savings without too much impact on people, in terms of their every-day lives," the general manager said. "Our full expectation is that the contribution will go back into effect as soon as possible."

Associated Press

Tags: Pittsburgh Pirates, Misc Rumor

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Manny Ramirez Hoping For Return To Baseball In Taiwan

Apr 29, 2020 9:46 AM

Manny Ramirez misses baseball and hopes to return to the game in Taiwan at age 48.

Ramirez, 48, briefly played in the Chinese Professional Baseball League in 2013.

In an interview published Wednesday by the Taiwan Times, Ramirez told the newspaper that he hopes to land a roster spot this year in the CPBL.

The league has attracted worldwide attention in recent months as the first major professional baseball league to start its 2020 season amid the coronavirus pandemic.

ESPN

Tags: Misc Rumor

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Trey Mancini Reveals Stage 3 Colon Cancer, Faces Six Months Of Chemo

Apr 29, 2020 9:43 AM

Trey Mancini doubts he will play this season if Major League Baseball does return.

The Baltimore Orioles outfielder revealed he is recovering from stage 3 colon cancer and is facing six months of chemotherapy.

Mancini had a port put into his chest on April 6 and began chemotherapy on April 13 to treat stage 3 colon cancer. He'll have chemo every two weeks.

"I'm getting chemo at a hospital in Baltimore, and I have to drive up there alone," he wrote on The Players' Tribune. "Nobody is allowed to come in with me, and that's completely fine by me. I don't want anybody else being put at risk -- people that are close to me and that I love, and other people in the hospital. You just never know. COVID-19 has spread so quickly. I'm definitely trying to follow all the protocols, not only because it's the right thing to do, but also because I don't want to expose myself to anything, especially before going into chemotherapy."

ESPN

Tags: Baltimore Orioles, Misc Rumor

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Andrew Cuomo Views MLB In NYC In 2020 As Viable

Apr 28, 2020 8:27 AM

New York governor Andrew Cuomo says he can envision a scenario where there are baseball games played in Yankee Stadium and Citi Field this season.

"If players could get paid more than staying home and owners would get some revenue versus total shutdown, why not? I'd love to watch." Cuomo said during a Sunday press briefing, noting he has spoken with owners of professional sports teams, but he did not identify which ones.

"It would have to be up to them, that they do an economic analysis that says, yeah, some revenue is better than no revenue, and my players are willing to negotiate a contract reduction," Cuomo added. "Everybody has to think outside the box, right? Because there is no box."

ABC 7/New York City

Tags: Misc Rumor

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Longtime Reds Scout, Mariners Executive George Zuraw Dies At 89

Apr 28, 2020 8:21 AM

Longtime Major League Baseball scout and executive George Zurow has died in Florida at 89.

Zurow was a longtime scout for the Cincinnati Reds and executive for the Seattle Mariners.

He started his scouting career with the Pittsburgh Pirates and worked for Cincinnati from 1968 to 1988 during the glory years of the Big Red Machine. Zurow went from Cincinnati to Seattle, where he was an assistant vice president. He also worked for the Pittsburgh Pirates and Tampa Bay Rays before retiring in 2007.

Associated Press

Tags: Cincinnati Reds, Seattle Mariners, Misc Rumor

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Rangers New Ballpark Could Be MLB Neutral Site

Associated Press

Mike Rizzo Optimistic MLB Will Play 2020 Season

Associated Press

Cape Cod Baseball League Cancels 2020 Season

ESPN

Vin Scully Home From Hospital After Fall

Associated Press

Indians To Pay Full-Time Employees Through June 30

Associated Press

Vin Scully Hospitalized After Falling At Home

ESPN

MLB The Show Players League Playoffs Will Be Broadcast

Joon Lee/ESPN

Nationals Won't Raise World Series Banner Until Fans Can Attend Games

Matt Snyder/CBS Sports

Red Sox Remove Interim Tag From Ron Roenicke's Title

ESPN

MLB Suspends Staffer, Alex Cora; Strips Red Sox Of Draft Pick

ESPN

Michael Jordan Had Offer From 1994 Oakland A's

Anthony Castrovince/MLB

MiLB To Accept Proposal That Would Cut More Than 40 Teams

J.J. Cooper/Baseball America

Rob Manfred 'Fully' Expects Baseball To Return In 2020

Jeff Passan/ESPN

A-Rod, J-Lo Eye Possible Bid For Mets

ESPN

MLB Discussing Three-State Plan To Start 2020 Season

R.J. Anderson/CBS Sports

Derek Jeter Forgoing $5M Salary During Shutdown

Craig Mish

South Korean Baseball League To Open On May 5

ESPN

Most MLB Teams Will Pay Baseball Ops Staff Through May

Jeff Passan/ESPN

Grant Helps Angels Pay More Than 1,800 Stadium Employees

Alden Gonzalez/ESPN

Yasiel Puig Confirms Marlins, Others Made Him Offers

R.J. Anderson/CBS Sports