Dodgers’ reliever Jonathan Broxton hasn’t pitched since early May due to a bum elbow, but until now there had always been some lingering hope that he’d be back this season. Hope to what end I have no idea because there hasn’t been a truly meaningful Dodgers game for months, but trainers don’t really concern themselves with that sort of thing.
Anyway, Broxton never got right enough to get into rehab appearances and get on a track back to the bigs, and the Dodgers have finally acknowledged the inevitable: that a little over two weeks from now the whole shebang is over until everyone meets up at Camelback Ranch next February and thus there is not enough time to get him back into fighting shape. Well, Jonathan Broxton fighting shape. Which is sort of like a distorted rhombus.
Where Broxton will be then is unclear, because he’s a free agent this winter and not even the Dodgers are in the business of signing faltering closers with bad elbows to contract extensions. Maybe the Yankees will do that, but not the Dodgers.
Athletics president Dave Kaval is ready to take full advantage of the interleague series between the Giants and A’s this season. While the two teams customarily play a few preseason “Battle of the Bay” games each year, they’re also scheduled to meet each other six times during the regular season; once for a three-game set in San Francisco, then for a three-game set in Oakland. On Saturday, Kaval announced that any Giants fans looking to park at the Coliseum this year will be charged $50 instead of the standard, general admission $30 — an additional “rivalry fee” that can be easily waived by shouting, “Go A’s!” at the gate.
This isn’t the first time that a major-league team has tried to keep rival fans at bay, though Kaval doesn’t seem all that intent on actually driving fans away from the ballpark. Back in 2012, the Nationals staged a “Take Back the Park” campaign after people began complaining that Phillies fans were overtaking Nationals Park during rivalry games. They limited a single-series presale of Nats-Phillies tickets to buyers within Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia in hopes of filling the stands with a few more friendly faces. Washington COO Andy Feffer told the press that while he would treat all guests with “respect and courtesy,” he wanted Phillies fans to feel irked enough to pay attention to the Nationals. In the end, things went… well, a little south for all involved.
Whether the Giants are planning any retaliatory measures has yet to be seen, but it’s not as if this is going to be an enforceable rule. The real travesty here, if you’re an A’s fan or just pretending to be one, is that the parking fees have increased from $20 to $30 this season. Unless you’re a season ticket holder with a prepaid $10 parking permit, it’s far better to brave the crowds and take advantage of local public transportation. There are bound to be far fewer irate Giants fans on BART than at the gates — even if the gag only lasts a few days out of the year.