Jim Leyritz gets a job in baseball

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In December 2007 Jim Leyritz was involved in a drunk driving accident that resulted in someone’s death. Last November he was acquitted of the most serious charges against.  Now he has been given a chance to get back into baseball:

The Newark Bears of the independent Can-Am League have agreed in principle to hire Leyritz as the team’s new hitting and pitching coach, owner and CEO Tom Cetnar said last night.

For Leyritz, the job will be his first foray into professional baseball since the legal troubles following his involvement in a fatal 2007 car crash.

“It’s a league of second chances,” Cetnar said. “Jimmy’s getting one, too.”

I believe in second chances. I also think that the structure of baseball — even non-affiliated baseball — is probably the best thing for Leyritz.  If he has any hope of making amends for his misdeeds and making something of his life, baseball is almost certainly going to be a part of it.  Here’s hoping he makes the best of it.

Will Middlebrooks carted off field with injury

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Phillies third baseman Will Middlebrooks suffered a serious injury during Saturday’s Grapefruit League contest against the Orioles. The infielder was chasing down a pop fly in the eighth inning when he ran into left fielder Andrew Pullin, who inadvertently trapped Middlebrooks’ ankle under his leg. Middlebrooks was unable to put weight on his leg following the collision and was carted off the field and taken to a local hospital for X-rays.

Per MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki, not much is known yet about the severity of the ankle injury or the recovery time it will require, though it appears serious enough to set Middlebrooks back considerably as he seeks a backup/bench role with the team this spring.

The 29-year-old is currently seeking another opportunity to extend his six-year major-league career in 2018. He’s coming off of two down years with the Brewers and Rangers, during which he slashed a cumulative .169/.229/.262 with four extra bases through 70 plate appearances.