Selig still set to retire after 2012 unless there's "an emergency"

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Bud Selig just got done with his annual All-Star Game news conference. I don’t have a transcript yet, but enough reporters there on the scene are tweeting about it to give us a few gems:

  • Selig said that it is still his plan is to retire after the 2012
    season.  Which he has to reiterate, because he has already blown through a multiple putative retirement dates in the past, only to stay on longer.  He says this one is legit, however, unless there is “an emergency.”  Query: if baseball finds itself in an emergency in 2012, won’t it be because Bud steered the ship in that direction? If things are terrible then, it’s an even bigger reason for Bud to go.

  • Selig wants to tighten up the schedule. He said “I live in fear of November.” I’m assuming he means the weather. I know it will cost some money, but schedule a handful of doubleheaders during the season and cut out postseason days off and we’re in October every year.

  • Selig predicts that baseball’s revenue will be up around $7 billion for 2010, up from $6.5 billion in 2009.  Silly bald bloggers can make all the cracks we, er, I mean they want to at Selig’s expense, but the man has delivered in the one job he is truly tasked with doing: making money for the owners and keeping the game on a sound financial footing.
  • He dodged a question about the 2011 All-Star Game in Arizona. I’m not sure this is really an issue for anyone anymore. Suit has been filed over the immigration law, and an injunction will likely follow. It was a different story before then because people were concerned about the law being active, but now Selig should just say as much, defer to the legal and political process and be done with it.

Overall not much to report from the Commissioner, I guess. Which in the business of baseball is a pretty good thing.

Report: Diamondbacks acquire Steven Souza from Rays; Yankees land Brandon Drury

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Update (6:35 PM ET): This is a three-team deal also involving the Diamondbacks, per Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. The Diamondbacks will receive outfielder Steven Souza from the Rays and second baseman Brandon Drury will head to the Yankees. Lefty reliever Anthony Banda will go to the Rays, Piecoro adds. The Diamondbacks will also receive prospect Taylor Widener from the Yankees, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post. MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert adds that the Rays will get two players to be named later from the D-Backs.

Souza, 28, is earning $3.55 million in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility, so the Rays are presumably saving money in moving him. Last season, Souza hit a productive .239/.351/.459 with 30 home runs, 78 RBI, 78 runs scored, and 16 stolen bases in 617 plate appearances. Souza’s arrival almost certainly pushes Yasmany Tomas out of a starting gig.

Drury, 25, has played a handful of positions in his brief major league career. Last year, he played second base in Arizona, batting .267/.317/.447 with 13 home runs and 63 RBI in 480 PA.

Banda, 24, made his major league debut last season, posting an ugly 5.96 ERA with a 25/10 K/BB ratio in 25 2/3 innings. The peripherals suggest he pitched better than his ERA indicated.

Widener, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the 12th round of the 2016 draft. This past season with High-A Tampa, he pitched 119 1/3 innings and posted a 3.39 ERA with a 129/50 K/BB ratio. MLB Pipeline rated Widener as the 14th-best prospect in the Yankees’ system.

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Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that the Rays will acquire second base prospect Nick Solak from the Yankees. The Yankees’ return is presently not known.

Solak, 23, was selected by the Yankees in the second round of the 2016 draft. He spent last season between High-A Tampa and Double-A Trenton, hitting a combined .297/.384/.452 with 12 home runs, 53 RBI, 72 runs scored, and 14 stolen bases.

MLB Pipeline ranked Solak as the eighth-best prospect in the Yankees’ system and the fifth-best second base prospect in baseball, praising him for his ability to hit line drives as well as his speed.