Hanley Ramirez out of the lineup with lingering elbow pain

4 Comments

Following an off day yesterday Hanley Ramirez wanted to be in the Marlins’ lineup tonight despite a sore left elbow, but manager Edwin Rodriguez opted to rest him:

His elbow was sore on Wednesday, so on Wednesday he said he’d try to play and I didn’t like what I saw. He came in today and said he was ready to play but he’s pretty much in the same condition he was on Wednesday. So, I decided not to play him. He said he couldn’t check swing. It was affecting starting to swing and finishing the swing.

Ramirez has been bothered by elbow pain for the past couple weeks now, but has hit .320/.424/.500 this month while missing just one previous start. Emilio Bonifacio is starting at shortstop and leading off in his absence and Ramirez is expected to be back in the lineup tomorrow.

New Jersey legislators call MLB’s request for a cut of gambling proceeds “laughable”

Getty Images
11 Comments

As we’ve noted in multiple posts in recent weeks, the legalization of sports gambling across the country is imminent. Indeed, it could come as early as next week, once the Supreme Court rules on the case brought by New Jersey to overturn the decades-old sports gambling ban.

As we’ve also noted, MLB and the other leagues are pressuring states to get a cut of the proceeds once gambling is legalized. Their argument — which is spurious in the extreme — is that the leagues will have a much harder time maintaining the integrity of their sports once sinful gambling comes out of the dark and into the light. As such, they argue, it’s morally incumbent upon the states to throw some of that money to the leagues so they can, I dunno, hire chaperones or den mothers or something. It’s all very vague, but the leagues are calling their sought-after cut “integrity fees,” and they’re lobbying state legislatures hard to get the new gambling laws written to include them.

Last month I wrote about how in West Virginia, Rob Manfred’s effort to get that cut wasn’t going so well. Today at NJ.com, Brent Johnson writes about how things are going in New Jersey:

[New Jersey] legislative leaders have balked at the leagues’ request for a fee, three sources with knowledge of the situation told NJ Advance Media. One source called the proposal “laughable.”

This is shocking. I mean, what are the odds that a Park Avenue lawyer couldn’t walk into New Jersey and successfully shake down guys for gambling money? Woulda thought that’d go super successfully, actually. I’ve gotta rethink everything TV and movies have taught me about trying to get gambling money out of dudes from Jersey.

Laughs aside, in the end I suspect Manfred’s gambit will pay off in more places that it doesn’t, mostly because public officials have always been sort of star struck and strangely intimidated by professional sports figures. Many states will kick back some of that gambling loot to the leagues and the leagues, in turn, will kick it back to the team owners, because that’s where all of the money goes, always.

But I do hope state legislators continue to at least make it hard and somewhat embarrassing for Manfred and his friends to get their share. In the words of noted gambling expert Bernie Bernbaum,  “I wanna watch you squirm; I wanna see you sweat a little, and when you smart me… it ruins it.”