Rangers veteran Michael Young might not want to talk to general manager Jon Daniels about his request for a trade and the club’s failed attempts to deal him, but he did address the matter in camp Sunday with his teammates.
Rangers manager Ron Washington said Young told the players in the clubhouse that he “wasn’t going to be a distraction” this spring or during the regular season and that he wanted to focus on baseball.
A couple of teams have shown interest in the 34-year-old since he asked to be moved earlier this month after being pushed into a part-time role, but no team has been willing to assume all of — or even most of — the three years and $48 million remaining on his contract. Young hasn’t hit well away from the Rangers’ power-friendly home ballpark and he doesn’t have great range defensively. He’s simply not worth it.
If the Rangers can’t work out a trade, they’ll use him as a sometimes designated hitter and sometimes first baseman in 2011. He has not been completely phased out. Far from it, actually.
Yesterday it was reported that someone stole Jose Fernandez’s high school jersey, which had been hanging in the Alsonso High School dugout in Tampa for a vigil. That was pretty vile stuff indeed.
Thankfully, however, someone’s conscience got the best of them: the jersey has been returned. School officials say that a family found a large envelope outside of the high school with the words “Jose’s jersey” written on it. They took the envelope into to the school this morning and the jersey was found inside.
Bad form taking it, whoever you are, but in most cases it’s never too late to make a better decision and fix your mistakes.
In late August, when everyone started looking at the schedule in an effort to see who had the easiest road ahead of them to the playoffs, the Tigers stood out as particularly blessed. The end of their season featured several games against the lonely Twins and, if things were tight heading into the final weekend, a three-game series against the lowly Braves.
Problem: the Braves have not been very lowly lately, and that could cause the Tigers all kinds of grief.
Atlanta has won 10 of 11 games. They’ve scored 66 runs in those games and their pitching staff has an ERA of 3.28 over that span. Oh, and remember how, earlier in the season, the Braves were hitting like a deadball era team, being outhomered by multiple individual players? Well, they’ve hit ten during this neat little run. Really, though, the run isn’t that little. They’ve won 19 of 30 and have been a solid team, offensively speaking, since late July. They’re hot as heck now and haven’t been pushovers for some time.
So enter the Tigers, who have been seesawing through August and September and who have to play in Atlanta this weekend without their DH, Victor Martinez. Oh, and who stand a halfway decent chance of having to fly out of Atlanta Sunday evening for a makeup game in Detroit that could then cause them to play a tiebreaker game in Toronto or Baltimore which could then have them travel to the other city for a Wild Card game. And that’s if things break decently.
If they break poorly? It’ll be a long, season-closing flight home from Atlanta. A city that was supposed to provide respite for them when it first appeared on the schedule.