A not-so Old Timer

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As Matt mentioned over the weekend, it was Old Timers Day in Yankee Stadium yesterday. One of the timers was not so old:

At the new Yankee Stadium on Sunday, the former pitcher Mike Mussina
was the newest Yankee old-timer and probably the most physically fit.
He started the nostalgia game, allowing hits to the first four batters
. . . When someone asked Mussina if he could come back for a partial
season the way Roger Clemens did, Mussina smiled and shook his head.

“There’s less than half a year left and it would take me a month,
easy, to be even close to ready, and I don’t know what ready would be
for me,” Mussina said. “Full speed might be 78 miles per hour . . . I
can still play. It’s just that there’s a lot of other stuff involved,
and sometimes that stuff wears you down. All the other old-timers are
older than I am. But it’s O.K. I’ll be an old-timer the rest of my
life.”

Noted, but I can’t help but think that he’d make about 20 rotations
better than they currently are. Still, nice to see someone happy in
retirement. It’s rare that anyone leaves big time sports on their own
terms, and rarer still that someone who does so sticks with it, and
happily.

It’s like he’s the Anti-Favre.

Clayton Kershaw could return on September 1

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Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw has been out since July 24 with a lower back strain. He’s slated to throw a three-inning simulated game in Pittsburgh on Monday, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register. Plunkett adds that if all goes well, the earliest Kershaw could return is August 31 against the Diamondbacks, but September 1 is more likely against the Padres.

Kershaw, 29, hit the disabled list on a pace to win his fourth Cy Young Award. He’s 15-2 with a 2.04 ERA and a 168/24 K/BB ratio in 141 1/3 innings.

The Dodgers have managed just fine without Kershaw. The club is 19-4 since July 24. At 87-35, the Dodgers own baseball’s best record, well ahead of the second-best Astros at 76-48.

Ian Kinsler was fined for ripping umpires publicly. Brad Ausmus says it’s the largest fine he’s seen in 25 years.

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Last week, Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler was ejected from a game against the Rangers after giving home plate umpire Angel Hernandez a look after a pitch was thrown outside for a ball. Kinsler was apparently unhappy with calls Hernandez had made earlier. Manager Brad Ausmus, too, was ejected.

After the game, Kinsler said that Hernandez “needs to find another job.” He added, “…he needs to stop ruining baseball games.”

Kinsler was fined by Major League Baseball for his remarks, Mlive’s Evan Woodbery reports. According to Ausmus, the fine levied on Kinsler was the largest one he’s seen in nearly 25 years in baseball. Kinsler said, “I said what I felt and what I thought. If they take offense to that, then that’s their problem.” Ausmus said, “To single out one player as a union is completely uncalled for.”

As Ashley noted on Saturday, the umpires wore white wristbands to protest “escalating attacks on umpires.” The umpires agreed to drop their protest on Sunday after commissioner Rob Manfred agreed to meet with the umpire union’s governing board, Gabe Lacques of USA TODAY Sports reports.