Pedro Martinez to open school, unsure if he’ll play

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Future Hall of Fame pitcher Pedro Martinez is keeping quite busy as he decides whether or not to return to play in 2011 (don’t bet on it).

The 39-year-old, who compiled a 219-100 record with a 2.93 ERA in 18 seasons, is launching a new school on Monday in his native Dominican Republic.

It will be called the Pedro Martinez Youth Academy and Baseball Park, and it sounds pretty cool, according to a report from Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald.

With a charter school, health services, arts and music programs, plus recreational facilities including basketball and volleyball courts and a baseball park to be called “Little Fenway,’’ the project will be built on land acquired in and around the former site of the very modest house he grew up in the village of Manoguayabo in the hills outside Santo Domingo.

Martinez said his dream is to develop players to the point where they can play exhibition games against U.S. schools like Boston College or Boston University.

As far as his own playing days go, Martinez didn’t sound like a man eager to return. “I don’t know really,” he told Silverman. “I could probably play if I wanted to, I just haven’t decided yet.”

Sounds like he has a noble cause to focus his time on. I imagine the school will keep him plenty busy, and he can just relax and let the clock tick toward a Cooperstown enshrinement in 2015.

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DOJ settles antirust lawsuit against cable companies who don’t carry Dodgers games

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Last November, the U.S. Department of Justice sued AT&T, accusing its subsidiary, DirecTV, of being the ringleader in a plot in which it conspired with Cox Communications, Charter Communications and AT&T cable (then a separate company), to refuse to carry SportsNet LA, the Dodger-owned TV channel in violation of antitrust laws.

Now that lawsuit is over. The DOJ settled with AT&T last night.

The bad news: no part of the settlement obligates DirecTV or any of the other alleged co-conspirators to carry Dodgers games or to even negotiate to that end. There is likewise no fine or truly substantive penalty. It’s basically a “do not do this again!” agreement with some antitrust training requirements for executives and some orders to monitor their communications about these things.

“We are pleased to have resolved this matter to the satisfaction of all parties,” an AT&T spokesman said yesterday, likely in the tone of a guy who is pretty happy to have had a major antitrust suit against him settled so quickly.

When the suit was filed, I anticipated a settlement, as most antitrust suits brought by the DOJ are settled. Such a settlement could’ve featured a cash penalty or, more significantly, a brokered agreement between the parties in question in lieu of a cash settlement that could’ve led to Dodgers games being carried on more channels. After all, more competition is the end game of the Antirust Division.

As it is, however, it’s hard to see this as anything other than a surrender by the DOJ and a victory for the those carriers who coordinated their efforts to not carry the Dodgers.

An open question, unanswered in anyone’s statements yesterday, is whether this settlement is 100% about the merits of the case — keeping in mind that the DOJ tends not to file antitrust suits unless they think they can win, instead preferring to negotiate first — or whether it represents a new set of laxer priorities when it comes to antitrust enforcement from the Trump Administration and AG Jeff Sessions.

Video: Jake Arrieta hits a 465-foot home run off of Zack Greinke

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Jake Arrieta‘s bat is in midseason form already. The Cubs’ ace swatted a solo home run to center field off of Zack Greinke in Thursday afternoon’s Grapefruit League exhibition game, his first homer of the spring.

The blast went 465 feet, according to MLB.com’s Daren Willman.

Arrieta has hit two home runs in each of the past two seasons. Madison Bumgarner (eight) and Noah Syndergaard (four) are the only other pitchers to match or exceed his output in that department.

Greinke, meanwhile, is hoping to bounce back after a miserable 2016 season. He finished with an uncharacteristic 4.37 ERA in 26 starts in his first year with the Diamondbacks.