Rafael Soriano drew the ire of Yankees beat writers last night after he left the clubhouse without talking to them about his poor outing against the Twins, with several media members taking him to task publicly.
Bryan Hoch of MLB.com tweeted that Soriano apologized to reporters this afternoon:
Soriano apologizes for not speaking to media. Says he was upset for CC. Girardi says not an issue in clubhouse. Soriano said he didn’t feel like he had his balance on the mound. He said his mom called from the DR asking if it was too cold for him.
That qualifies as doing the right thing, but it won’t matter one bit if he does it again and there are still 157 games to go. Beyond that, as Craig wrote this morning the media members are hardly the only people with a reason to be upset at Soriano, as his failing to speak to reporters put his teammates in the position of answering for him.
Soriano is a good enough pitcher that he can make this entire thing largely a moot point by simply making his poor outings few and far between, but he’s already learning that media coverage is a whole lot different in New York than it was in Tampa Bay, especially after signing a $35 million contract.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.