Ozzie Guillen, on Ron Washington testing positive for cocaine:
One thing about it, it ain’t going to happen to me, I guarantee you that. I grew up in some bad stuff, I know how that stuff is so bad. I support him. He made a mistake. I’m not saying he did the right thing, but in the meanwhile, we can’t turn our back against him. They know Major League Baseball isn’t playing around. They’re serious about it. As long as they don’t check for Vodka and Corona I’ll be fine.
In addition to being amusing that quote also brings up an interesting point. Washington tested positive for cocaine after what he claims was his first use in 57 years, and now has to go through counseling, treatment, and thrice-weekly drug tests. However, a manager is free to, as Ozzie put it, drink as much Vodka and Corona as they want and unless they have an alcohol-related incident no one knows or, punishment-wise, cares.
One thing is illegal and the other isn’t, which is obviously a very important distinction, but I’d certainly rather have my manager use cocaine once every 57 years rather than drink heavily on a regular basis. Of course, if you don’t buy that Washington tried cocaine for the first and only time in his entire life at age 57 … well, then it’s probably a moot point.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.