Link-O-Rama: Gonzalez 'praying' steroids list comes out

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* Recently retired Luis Gonzalez said yesterday that he’s “hoping and praying” the full list of players who tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs in 2003 is revealed because “I’m hoping I get a lot of apologies when that list comes out.”
“I’m really one of those other 500 guys in the league that hopes that list comes out so I can walk around and nobody whispers behind my back, saying that he did it that year.” By “that year” he means 2001, when Gonzalez hit 57 homers at the age of 33 after never topping 31 before or after.
* Last night at Dodger Stadium a remote-control airplane flew above the field before crashing into a fence next to the Diamondbacks’ dugout. Amusingly, players had vastly different reactions to the odd situation.
Matt Kemp said: “That was tight, I liked that. That stayed in the air for a cool two or three minutes.” On the other hand, Augie Ojeda picked up the crashed airplane and then ripped it into two pieces as the crowd booed. Bully.
* Dallas Braden has been one of the few bright spots in Oakland this season, posting a 3.89 ERA in 22 starts, but he’s reportedly “extremely unlikely to be back this year” because of lingering foot problems.
* X-rays came back negative after Adam Jones injured his ankle last night, but Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com notes that “he’s in a lot of pain at the moment and he figures to be out of the lineup for a while.”
* Back problems may relegate Gary Sheffield to pinch-hitting duties down the stretch.
* Jorge Posada: Great at hitting, not so great at counting.

Yoenis Cespedes blames a lack of golf for his early season slump

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Back during the 2015 playoffs the sorts of New York media types who love to find reasons to criticize players for petty reasons decided to criticize Yoenis Cespedes for playing golf the day of a playoff game. The Mets won the series with the Cubs during which the controversy, such as it was, occurred and it was soon dropped.

It was picked back up again in 2016 when Cespedes, while on the disabled list with a strained quad, was seen playing golf. Despite the fact that everyone involved said that golf did not contribute to his injury and that golf would have no impact on his injured quad, it was deemed “a bad look” by a columnist looking to get some mileage out of bashing Cespedes for having a hobby that probably half of all ballplayers share. They did it when he showed off his fancy cars too, by the way, even though just about every ballplayer has a fancy car or three. When you’re a superstar in New York — especially when you’re one with whom the media is not particularly close for various reasons — you’re going to catch hell for seemingly nothing.

Now there’s a new twist to the Cespedes golf saga. Yoenis himself says that his poor start — he’s hitting .195/.258/.354 and leads the league in strikeouts — is due to . . . not enough golf! From the New York Times:

He gave a possible reason for the poor start this weekend: not playing enough golf, a hobby beloved by many baseball players. And, yes, he is serious.

“In previous seasons, one of the things I did when I wasn’t going well was to play golf,” he said after a game on Friday in which he struck out four times but still drove in the go-ahead run in the 12th inning. “This year, I’m not playing golf.”

The story says Cespedes quit golf last summer because he worried that it was contributing to hamstring problems. He’s thinking about going back to it soon, as he thinks it’ll help his swing. Given that he’ll catch hell either way, he may as well do what he wants.