Despite the fact that there’s a gag order in place on the participants in the Roger Clemens trial, and despite the fact that there is absolutely nothing interesting about a retired baseball player playing golf, the Daily News has sent a reporter to basically stalk Roger Clemens down at that amateur tournament he’s playing in down at Myrtle Beach.
Roger Clemens has a lot of problems, but he seems to have a pretty good handle on where the Daily News is coming from:
After finishing up the par-4 18th hole at True Blue – Clemens began
his round on the 9th hole – he was asked by a Daily News reporter
outside the clubhouse if he’d be open to talking after he finished his
round, as long as the subject was golf related.
When told the reporter was from the Daily News, he said, “The Daily
News? That’s comical. You must know (Brian) McNamee real well.”
He pretty much nailed it there. The Daily News has basically been McNamee’s P.R. firm for the past two years. Which is fine. Everyone can pick a side if they’re into that sort of thing. But when you do so just don’t expect anyone — even Roger Clemens — to believe that you give a hoot about his golf game.
Indeed, based on the headline of that story — “Clemens plays golf while lawyers likely buried with documents” — it’s obvious that they’re trying to portray the guy as a pampered athlete, oblivious to the trouble he’s in.
Hint to the Daily News: after being given a mountain of evidence to sift through, the last thing a legal team in this kind of case wants is their client sitting in the conference room “helping.”
If they need him, they’ll call him. If they have a lot to cover, they’ll set up a meeting sometime. For now, they’re probably more than happy that he’s down on a golf course where he can’t interrupt them.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.