Remember back in the spring how Alex Rodriguez said that it was his cousin, Yuri Sucart, who was the one that supplied him with his PEDs? Well, he’s had a worse go of it since then than A-Rod has:
began foreclosure proceedings on Yuri Sucart’s Miami home and three
South Florida rental properties in the months after Rodriguez’s Feb. 17
news conference . . . US Bank initiated foreclosure proceedings on
Sucart’s two-bedroom home on Aug. 12 . . . Deutsche Bank
began foreclosure proceedings on April 3 on a four-bedroom apartment
Sucart purchased in February of 2005. Wachovia Mortgage initiated
foreclosure proceedings against two other rental properties owned by
Sucart and his wife in July.
The Daily News article does
its best to paint A-Rod as responsible for all of this, essentially
saying that he treated Sucart like a drug mule and then cast him aside
when the drug revelations hit. That whole narrative is broken,
however, by a quote buried sixteen paragraphs into the story: “A friend
of A-Rod’s who spoke on condition of anonymity says Sucart
still works for the Yankee superstar. ‘Alex takes care of his family,’
the friend says.”
It’s entirely possible that, like any other number of property owners
who are upside down on their mortgage in depressed markets like South
Florida, Sucart and/or Rodriguez made the judgment that it’s preferable to simply walk away and let the bank have property that is worth way less than its outstanding indebtedness rather than continue to throw good money after bad.
Such a strategy comes with its own set of moral and ethical issues, of course, but
it’s something that’s done all the time, and is even counseled by a lot
of legitimate financial advisers under such circumstances.
Moreover, such a strategy fits into the “Alex takes care of his family” narrative
in ways that the “A-Rod is a heartless man who threw his cousin under
the bus” does not. But since the Daily News has spent the past several
years demonizing every PED-connected player in baseball, there’s no way
that they’d ever take that angle.
Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury News reports that the Giants have signed catcher Nick Hundley. It’s a major league deal worth $2 million.
Hundley, who is 33, but who seems like he’s been in the bigs for about 27 years, hit .260/.320/.439 with 10 homers in 83 games for the Rockies last season. Obviously he will be the backup given the presence of Buster Posey.
Major League Baseball has experienced inconsistent progress in its efforts at promoting diversity and social responsibility in recent years despite making it a league priority. Today it has announced several changes in its leadership structure in these areas, with Commissioner Manfred saying, “As the sport of Jackie Robinson and Roberto Clemente, we have a responsibility to uphold and honor their legacies, especially in ensuring that our sport and business practices are as inclusive, diverse and socially-conscious as possible.”
To that end:
- Billy Bean has been promoted to Vice President and Special Assistant to the Commissioner. This is a newly-created and elevated position in which Bean will continue his efforts at promoting human rights issues important to Major League Baseball, with a particular focus on LGBT and anti-bullying efforts. He has done such work since 2014 as its Ambassador for Inclusion, but putting him at the vice presidential level and having him answer directly to Commissioner Manfred increases his profile and that of his mission;
- Renée Tirado, has been promoted to Vice President of Talent Acquisition and Diversity & Inclusion. Tirado had previously served as Senior Director of Recruitment. She will direct the implementation of recruitment plans and procedures to support MLB’s staffing objectives and will oversee MLB’s Diversity Pipeline Program. As you may recall, Major League Baseball has struggled mightily in these effort in recent years, and has admitted as much; and
- Melanie LeGrande has been promoted to Vice President of Social Responsibility. She previously served as MLB’s Director of Community Affairs. Her job will be to develop and enhance the initiatives that support MLB’s position in the community and oversee MLB’s community investments, nonprofit/non-governmental organization partnerships, large-scale disaster relief efforts and employee volunteer engagement.
Manfred said, “the promotions of Billy, Renée and Melanie reflect our commitment to have strong, innovative leadership in place that aligns our industry objectives with a desire to be effective corporate citizens.”
While all of these are current employees who have served in roughly similar roles. A business’ organizational chart says much about how much that business values various functions and initiatives. In keeping with Manfred’s comments, that all three of these people have been promoted to the vice presidential level is a strong signal from MLB about what it wants.
Now all it has to do is follow through and get what it wants.