Yesterday we learned that baseball is taking a longer look at the background of would-be Astros owner Jim Crane. Today the current owner of the Astros, Drayton McLane, is quoted about that:
“I have great respect for the commissioner, but he doesn’t do anything until he’s finished. He’s the most meticulous man I’ve ever met.”
Seriously. Just ask the Oakland A’s. That said, McLane still believes that the deal will go through. Maybe even in less than three years!
My hope: that the increased scrutiny on Crane isn’t just window dressing designed to placate those who have concerns about civil rights complaints against his company. If there is any meat to those accusations, I would hope that they’d be seriously reviewed. If not, I would hope that baseball not patronize people by pretending to take small things so seriously.
Most of all, I would hope that they’re scrutinizing the financing of the deal just as much as they’re looking at the character stuff. Because as history has shown us, baseball is able to correct aberrant behavior among owners on the civil rights front (just ask the ghost of Marge Schott). But it hasn’t yet gotten its brain around poor financing (just ask the ghost of the Los Angeles Dodgers franchise).
The Giants beat the Cardinals on Saturday night, but there was some grumpiness between a couple of Giants players all the same.
As Hank Shulman reports, late in the 13-inning game Fox TV cameras caught catcher Buster Posey yelling at first baseman Belt after Stephen Piscotty of the Cardinals stole second base. Then, after the final out, there was a brief, cold stare down between the teammates. The issue would appear to be Posey being upset with Belt for not holding Piscotty close at first base and then Belt being upset with Posey for calling him out in front of God and the fans and the TV cameras and everyone.
Neither Posey nor Belt would talk about it to reporters afterwards or on Sunday, saying the matter was between them and that they’d deal with it privately. Which is a smart move.
Of course, if Posey heeded that advice beforehand and took up his dissatisfaction with Belt in private, the reporters wouldn’t have even known about it in the first place.
The Yankees probably have the best minor league system in baseball right now and the best player in that system is, without question, shortstop Gleyber Torres. Now that top prospect is a step closet to the Bronx: he has been promoted to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The Yankees don’t rush their prospects anywhere nearly as fast as a lot of teams do, but Torres, who is only 20, proved himself to be ready for the promotion. In 32 games at Double-A Trenton this year he hit .273/.367/.496 in 139 plate appearances. That OPS is almost 100 points higher than that which he posted in high A-ball in 2016.
Torres came over to the Yankees from the Cubs organization in the Aroldis Chapman trade last summer. At this rate he’ll be playing shortstop behind Chapman in New York before too long.