Ken Davidoff has what is hopefully the last we’ll hear of Hank Steinbrenner’s little tantrum yesterday. Guess what: when Hank Steinbrenner said that guys were “too busy building mansions” he didn’t mean anyone specifically. He meant it as a figure of speech. You know, like people have been saying since olden times.
I know that sounds crazy, but I can almost picture Liam Neeson saying — in a period drama — “Aye, he’s too busy buildin’ mansions to know bettur,” and having it make perfect sense.
More interesting to me is this bit:
Meanwhile, Bud Selig already has reached out to Hal Steinbrenner and president Randy Levine to remind them – to remind Hank – that there are to be no management comments about revenue sharing. There’s an MLB-wide gag order as we approach negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement.
That’s the part of Hank’s rant that stuck in my craw the most yesterday. And stuck in my craw previously when Yankees President Randy Levine slammed revenue sharing to take a swipe at the Rangers. I predicted at the time that Selig was going to say something to the Yankees about it, and I’m glad he did.
Like it or not, revenue sharing is a part of the game’s structure at present. If a player were spouting off to the media about how the arbitration system is unfair or about how a team controlling them for six years or more was akin to indentured servitude, you can bet your bottom dollar that the league would freak. Levine and Steinbrenner calling revenue sharing communism is no different and they need to put a sock in it. Don’t like it? Negotiate a better deal next time.
Padres starter Jered Weaver lasted just two-thirds of an inning in Wednesday afternoon’s Cactus League appearance against the Royals. He yielded four runs on three hits, throwing 31 pitches before getting pulled. His spring ERA now sits at an ugly 10.13.
Weaver said he’s been dealing with a “dead arm” since his last bullpen session, but added he’s dealt with the issue in previous springs, Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports.
The Padres signed Weaver to a one-year, $3 million contract last month. The right-hander is coming off of the worst season of his 11-year career. His fastball averaged a career-low 83 MPH and he put up a 5.06 ERA with a 103/51 K/BB ratio in 178 innings.
Earlier, Craig wrote about Dan Duquette’s dogwhistle language in his criticism of Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista. We have some more dogwhistling, this time coming from Tigers (and Team U.S.) second baseman Ian Kinsler. Via Billy Witz of The New York Times:
I hope kids watching the W.B.C. can watch the way we play the game and appreciate the way we play the game as opposed to the way Puerto Rico plays or the Dominican plays. That’s not taking anything away from them. That just wasn’t the way we were raised. They were raised differently and to show emotion and passion when you play. We do show emotion; we do show passion. But we just do it in a different way.
The goal of the World Baseball Classic, created by Major League Baseball, is to promote baseball across the globe. It’s players like Puerto Rico’s Javier Baez who are doing the best job in that regard, not boring white guys from the U.S. Potential baseball fans are not swayed into liking the sport when a player hits a home run and solemnly puts his head down to stroll the bases. They get excited and energized when players show emotion, flip their bats, celebrate. Baez did more to make baseball appeal to new and lapsed audiences with his premature celebration tag than the entire U.S. team has done this tournament.
Furthermore, it is hypocritical to want to diversify the sport’s audience while squelching incoming cultures.
Jim Leyland also got in on the action:
Go Puerto Rico.