Judge smacks Signature Pharmacy prosecutor

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You might recall Signature Pharmacy, the mail order drug store that was portrayed as steroid and HGH central back in 2007. In 2008, the Albany, New York prosecutor’s office brought charges against Signature and its owners. This despite the fact that Signature was in Florida. The charges were subsequently dismissed. While I have no idea what, exactly, Signature was doing, I felt at the time that Albany prosecutors going after a Florida company like this was steroids grandstanding of the worst kind.

Seems the judge handling the Signature owners’ civil rights lawsuit agrees with me, because he just smacked the Albany prosecutors down, and smacked them hard:

In denying Mr. Soares’s motion to dismiss the suit, the judge, Gregory
A. Presnell, used biting language to criticize Mr. Soares, saying he had
led a case riddled with flaws, including arrests that potentially were
illegal, as Mr. Soares sought to attract maximum media attention . . .

. . . He also described the extent to which the Albany district attorney’s
office sought to orchestrate media coverage for the raid, saying that
Mr. Soares and a top deputy on the case, Christopher Baynes, “appear to
have been focused in significant part on ensuring that plaintiffs’
arrests and the raids would be covered by the media.”

Perish the thought.

Now, if we can get this judge to weigh in on Jeff Novitzky and the prosecutors who are continuing to go after Barry Bonds despite a seeming critical lack of evidence, we’ll be getting somewhere.

Steroids are bad, mmm-kay, but the zeal with which their use and distribution has been pursued by law enforcement and the expense that has gone into such a pursuit far, far outweighs the danger they pose.  Here’s hoping this isn’t the last judge who understands this and shoves it up wazoo of overzealous, media-hungry, careerist prosecutors.

Diamondbacks sign Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $2.75 million deal

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 21:  Fernando Rodney #56 of the Miami Marlins pitches during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on August 21, 2016 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***
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Confirming a report from Tuesday, the Diamondbacks officially signed right-hander Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $2.75 million contract on Friday. The 39-year-old stands to receive up to $4 million in incentives, per Jack MacGruder of FanRag Sports, with $250,000 kicking in when the veteran reaches 40, 50 and 60 appearances and $500,000 if he reaches 70.

Rodney came three games shy of the 70-appearance mark in 2016 during back-to-back stints with the Padres and Marlins. He put up a cumulative 3.44 ERA on the year, which effectively disguised the extreme split during his performances in San Diego and Miami. The Diamondbacks aren’t anywhere close to contending in 2017, but Rodney should stabilize the back end of their bullpen while providing Arizona GM Mike Hazen with a potential trade chip during next year’s deadline.

Hazen issued a statement following the signing:

With Fernando, we’re getting an established Major League closer and a veteran presence in the bullpen. It is helpful to have someone with his experience on the back end to slow the game down and get the final three outs.

Cardinals, Dexter Fowler agree to a five-year, $82 million deal

CLEVELAND, OH - NOVEMBER 02:  Dexter Fowler #24 of the Chicago Cubs reacts during the seventh inning against the Cleveland Indians in Game Seven of the 2016 World Series at Progressive Field on November 2, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
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The Cardinals have officially signed outfielder Dexter Fowler to a five-year, $82.5 million contract. Fowler will also get a full no-trade clause.

The Cardinals gave Fowler a bigger deal than many speculated he’d get, as some reports predicted he’d get something in the $52-72 million range. His skills, however — he’s a fantastic leadoff hitter who plays a premium defensive position — definitely earned him some major dough. Fowler hit .276/.393/.447 with 13 homers, 48 RBI and 13 steals over 125 games in 2016 for the World Series champion Cubs.

For the Cardinals, this will allow Matt Carpenter to move down to the middle of the batting order and will shift Randal Grichuk to left field. It also takes a prime piece from the Cardinals’ biggest rival. For their part, earlier this offseason the Cubs signed former Cardinal center fielder Jon Jay. So that’s fun.