Pete Abraham has his Hall of Fame column up. It’s good, as usual.
This year he reconsidered his no-vote for Jeff Bagwell from last year, decided that not voting for him based on PED suspicion is “baseball McCarthyism” and cast his ballot for Bagwell. You may or may not agree with that (I do), but a person’s willingness to rethink past beliefs and change their mind is a damn admirable and damn rare trait. Good on ya, Pete Abe.
Apart from Bagwell he has Trammell, Raines and Larkin, which makes his ballot pretty fantastic in my view.
But that’s not why I’m linking it. I’m linking it for this comment about Jeromy Burnitz, who is also on the Hall of Fame ballot:
Burnitz would have fit in with the cast of “Jackass.” As a practical joke, he would empty out bottles of shampoo in the showers on road trips after the last game of the series and pee in them.
315 homers and an OPS+ of 111 is not good enough to get a corner outfielder into the Hall of Fame. But we have to give him a bit of a kicker for personality, don’t we?
The Angels signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani for a $2.3 million signing bonus last weekend. They may have damaged goods on their hands. Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Ohtani underwent a physical that revealed a first-degree sprain of his ulnar collateral ligament. As a result, he got a platelet-rich plasma injection on October 20. This was made known to teams after Ohtani entered MLB’s posting system, so it wasn’t like the Angels went into this blind.
Ohtani’s report said, “Although partial damage of UCL in deep layer of his right UCL exists, he is able to continue full baseball participation with sufficient elbow care program.” It also said Ohtani “will most likely be available to start his throwing program approximately a month from the PRP.”
Passan notes that the report also mentioned that a “small free body” floats in Ohtani’s elbow near his UCL.
Ohtani isn’t without other injuries. He battled hamstring and ankle issues throughout 2017 and underwent right ankle surgery back in October. Thankfully for the Angels, this diagnosis is about as good as it could be considering the circumstances. However, if Ohtani does exacerbate his UCL issue, he may ultimately need Tommy John surgery at some point, which would take him out of action for at least a year.