Earl Weaver is auctioning off a ton of memorabilia

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Whenever I hear about a baseball figure auctioning off stuff I worry that they’re broke or something, but in this day and age it’s more likely that they’re merely trying to simplify their estate plan.  That seems to be the case with longtime Orioles’ manager Earl Weaver, who is auctioning off all kinds of things:

Hall of Fame manager Earl Weaver is auctioning off 47 of his treasured keepsakes, including his 1966 World Series ring and jerseys received as gifts from Cal Ripken Jr. and Eddie Murray.The former Baltimore Orioles skipper will earn tens of thousands of dollars from the sale, but Weaver says he doesn’t need the money and isn’t keeping any of it.

“I have four children. They have children, and their children have children,” said Weaver, who turns 81 in August. “I don’t know how to divide whatever memorabilia there is among them.”

The article lists a lot of the things he’s selling and Weaver talks about how, when you have a ton of grandchildren and great grandchildren, most of whom don’t love baseball as much as you do, it’s way easier to simply liquidate the collectibles.

He also says something briefly about remembering the stuff that led to his acquisition of said collectibles, and that resonates with me. I’m not a pack rat. Aside from some baseball cards in the basement I don’t keep much. I don’t begrudge those who are fond of keepsakes, but the memories of people and places in my life are far more valuable to me than the keepsakes themselves.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering: there is no word if Weaver’s auction items include any Terry Crowley cards, books on tomato plants or treatises on team speed.  And if you don’t know why I mention that, I suggest that you use Google to find out.  And if you do, dear God, make sure the volume is down on your computer and that there are no minors within 1000 yards of you when you find what you’re looking for.

Must-read: A profile on former Rays prospect Brandon Martin, currently in jail for alleged murders of three men

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Nathan Fenno of the Los Angeles Times has an outstanding profile of former Rays prospect Brandon Martin, who is currently in jail for allegedly murdering three men nearly two years ago.

Fenno describes Martin’s erratic personality as he became a highly-touted baseball prospect who then descends into drug use. Friends described Martin has having completely changed into an unrecognizable person. Martin had repeated conflicts with friends and family such that police reports became common and he was placed in a psychiatric facility. Sadly, the facility only held him for less than 48 hours. He would allegedly murder three people upon returning home: his father, his brother-in-law, and a home security system contractor. Martin fled from police, who eventually caught up to him and subdued him with the help of a police dog.

Fenno’s profile is really worth a read, so click here to check it out.

Martin, 23, was selected by the Rays in the first round (38th overall) of the 2011 draft. He spent three years in the Rays’ system, reaching as high as Single-A Bowling Green.

Pedro Martinez: “If I was pitching, I was going to drill Machado, as much as I love him.”

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On Sunday, Red Sox reliever Matt Barnes was ejected for throwing at Orioles third baseman Manny Machado‘s head. It was revenge for a slide of Machado’s which ended up injuring Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia. Barnes was suspended four games.

Hall of Famer and former Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez said that if he were in Barnes’ shoes, he would have also thrown at Machado, although not necessarily at his head. Via ESPN’s Scott Lauber:

If I was pitching, I was going to drill Machado, as much as I love him. The only thing I would’ve done differently is probably bring the ball a little bit lower.

Martinez added that Machado “did not intend to hurt Pedroia. And I know that because I know Machado.” And he doesn’t think Barnes meant to throw at Machado’s head.

Martinez, of course, was certainly a pitcher who wasn’t afraid to pitch inside to batters and even hit a few of them when he felt he or his teammates had been wronged. This is an unfortunate part of baseball’s culture and the fact that it continues means that it will eventually result in someone being seriously hurt. It’s disappointing that Martinez isn’t willing to be a better role model now that his playing days are over. Martinez could have set an example for today’s pitchers by saying what Barnes did crossed a line. Getting a Hall of Famer’s seal of approval will only embolden players now when they feel they must defend their teammates’ honor.

The “tradition” of beaning batters to defend one’s teammates is anachronistic in today’s game, especially when Major League Baseball has made strides in so many other ways recently to protect players’ safety.