Chicago Cubs v Philadelphia Phillies

Jose Contreras has setback during bullpen session Monday

2 Comments

The odds of seeing Jose Contreras pitch for the Phillies again this season just took a real hit.

Phillies pitching coach Rich Dubee told Todd Zolecki of MLB.com that Contreras had his bullpen session cut short earlier today because his elbow was “barking.” He was originally scheduled to throw a bullpen session over the weekend, but the Phillies pushed him back after Dubee determined that “he wasn’t ready.”

Contreras hasn’t pitched since June 19 due to a strained right forearm. The veteran right-hander has a 3.86 ERA, five saves and a 13/8 K/BB ratio over 14 innings prior to the injury.

While Contreras is now scheduled to see a doctor for further evaluation, the news is more encouraging for Joe Blanton. He threw off a mound earlier today with no issues and could still return in September as a reliever. The 30-year-old right-hander hasn’t pitched since May 14 due to elbow inflammation.

Sammy Sosa compares himself to Jesus Christ

Sammy Sosa
6 Comments

I’m on record saying that Sammy Sosa has been rather hosed by baseball history.

The guy did amazing things. Unheard-of things. He was truly astounding at this peak and was incredibly important to both his franchise and Major League Baseball as a whole. His repayment: he’s a pariah. His club won’t claim him and his greatness, by any measure, has not just been overlooked but denied by most who even bother to consider him.

Yes, he had PED associations, but they were extraordinarily vague ones. He’s in the same boat as David Ortiz as far as documented PED evidence against him, but Ortiz will be a first ballot Hall of Famer while Sosa barely clings to the ballot. He hit homers at the same cartoonish rate as Mark McGwire, but while Big Mac has been embraced by baseball and has coached for years, Sosa can’t get into Wrigley Field unless he buys a ticket and even then the Cubs might try to hustle him out of sight. The man has been treated poorly by any measure.

Yet, it’s still possible to overstate the case. Like Sosa did in this interview with Chuck Wasserstrom:

It’s like Jesus Christ when he came to Jerusalem,” Sosa told chuckbloggerstrom.com. “Everybody thought Jesus Christ was a witch (laughing) — and he was our savior. So if they talk (bleep) about Jesus Christ, what about me? Are you kidding me?”

At least he was basically joking about it. Still, it’s a totally unfair and almost offensive comparison.

I mean, anyone who watched Sosa’s career knows that he had trouble laying off breaking stuff low and away. In contrast . . .

Magic Johnson to take over the Lakers, but will still be part of Dodgers ownership

CHICAGO, IL - OCTOBER 15:  Earvin 'Magic' Johnson attends game one of the National League Championship Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Wrigley Field on October 15, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Getty Images
2 Comments

This is more significant for basketball fans than baseball fans, but Magic Johnson is taking over basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. Dan Feldman over at PBT has the full story on that.

For our purposes, you probably know that Johnson is part of the Dodgers ownership group. Anthony McCullough of the L.A. Times got comment from the Dodgers, saying that despite his new full-time job, his status with the Dodgers will be unchanged:

Maybe I’m alone in this, but I’m not entirely certain what Magic does with the Lakers, so the first clause in Kasten’s comment may be doing most of the heavy lifting here.