Link-O-Rama: At least Cleveland leads the league in something

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* Yesterday manager Eric Wedge and the Indians held a team meeting for the second time in a week … and then lost their 11th straight game. Cleveland is now 3-19 this month and the 11-game losing streak is the team’s longest since 1931.
At this point I’ll be very surprised if Wedge is back for an eighth season at the helm in 2010, if only because general manager Mark Shapiro probably needs to make someone the fall guy before all of the attention turns to him.
* Derrek Lee has the second-highest OPS in baseball during the past four months, but left yesterday’s game after aggravating the back injury that has lingered for much of the season. He’s considered day-to-day.
* In the process of winning his fourth straight game last night Brett Anderson set the A’s record for strikeouts by a rookie with 145. Oakland has had a ton of impressive young pitching in recent years, but because guys like Barry Zito, Mark Mulder, Tim Hudson, and Rich Harden didn’t play full seasons as rookies the record belonged to Rick Langford, who had 141 strikeouts while going 8-19 in 1977.
* Fernando Martinez is in the Dominican Republic recovering from July knee surgery and recently had his wallet “stolen while he was in a party with some relatives in an amusement center.” He’s out $2,000 and the Mets’ season gets just a little more absurd.

The Rangers release Josh Hamilton

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 4: Josh Hamilton #32 of the Texas Rangers reacts after scoring a run on a Elvis Andrus RBI double during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels at Globe Life Park on October 4, 2015 in Arlington, Texas. Texas won 9-2 and won the AL West Title. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
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Welp, it was probably worth the gamble given that the Angels were paying most of his salary. But the Rangers’ gamble on Josh Hamilton failed and now Josh Hamilton is a free agent. The club has given him unconditional release waivers.

Hamilton underwent surgery to repair lateral and meniscus cartilage in his left knee back in June. During surgery it was discovered that he had an ACL injury as well, which required reconstruction. This whole season was lost and, while Hamilton has one year remaining on his contract, the Rangers are clearly able to compete without him and could use the roster spot over the small chance that he could be an everyday player again.

Hamilton will earn $30 million next season, $26.41 million of which is being paid for by the Angels. Last year in 182 plate appearances with the Rangers, Hamilton hit .253/.291/.441 with eight home runs and 25 RBI. At age 35, it’s not hard to imagine that his major league career is effectively over.

 

The Yankees offer to pay for Doc Gooden’s rehab

FLUSHING, NY - UNDATED:  Dwight Gooden #16 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch during a game at Shea Stadium circa 1984-1994 in Flushing, New York.  (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
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With the continuing caveat that it is really weird and likely as uncomfortable as hell for all of those involved for this to be playing out so publicly, here is the latest news on the Doc Gooden/Daryl Strawberry/possible cocaine relapse story. From the Daily News:

Dwight (Doc) Gooden is insisting publicly that he doesn’t have a drug problem, yet more and more people want to help him — none more significant than the Yankees, who have reached out to say they’ll pay for any treatment he would consider getting.

That’s admirable of the Yankees, as is their refusal to comment on it further (the Daily News got this info from Strawberry). The Yankees, of course, gave both Strawberry and Gooden second chances in the 1990s when their addiction problems threatened their careers.