Boston Red Sox Photo Day

The cop who yelled the racist stuff at Carl Crawford is probably gonna get fired

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But not just because he yelled racist stuff at Carl Crawford. Rather, because — in addition to the Crawford thing — he allegedly exhibited a pattern of racist baloney:

A five-page handwritten statement from a patron at Classics Pub on Route 12, submitted as evidence, said Officer Perrault repeatedly used the “n word” to describe African-Americans while watching a televised NBA game.

Also, Chief Healey said his officers told him of an incident on St. Patrick’s Day at a bar in Faneuil Hall in Boston. Officer Perrault, after seeing a black man wearing a Guinness beer T-shirt, allegedly said to the man “I didn’t know they served Guinness in Africa.” The chief said the remark provoked a scuffle with the man, which was broken up by fellow Leominster officers, including Officer Perrault’s superiors, who were with him.

The Chief of Police wants him fired. The Mayor is going to decide it later this week.  And none of this ever would have come to light, I reckon, if this dude hadn’t decided to yell garbage at a ballplayer who doesn’t care a lick about him or what he thinks.

Still, there is a lot of nonsense afoot here from the folks looking to oust the police officer. If you’ll recall, there was a lot of argument in this case about the term “Monday” — the slur the officer used — and its definition, which the Chief took from the Urban Dictionary.  I have little doubt that this cop was actually hurling a slur at Crawford, but I’d like to think our civil servants aren’t making hiring and firing determinations based on what appears to be way too great a reliance on one of the biggest disaster area websites on the Internet.

This is somewhat more concerning: After the officer’s lawyer argued about the potential uncertainty regarding whether the word in question was a slur …

Chief Healey said what matters is that Mr. Crawford took it as a racial slur.

Sorry, that can’t be the standard. We can infer intent by the speaker from a number of sources — as the hearing here seems to have done — but we can’t rely solely on how the target of an alleged slur took it.  Remember the fun little debate about “niggardly?” Boy, that was an exercise in stupidity. Again, I don’t think it’s the case here, but if we’re going with what the target assumed, we’re going to run into situations in which someone’s ignorance determines whether someone else loses their job or gets kicked out of school or something.

Oh well. Enough of that today.

(thanks to Big Leagues, who is helping us see this story through to the end)

Joe Panik says he’s “100 percent” recovered from back injury

San Francisco Giants second baseman Joe Panik follows through on a single off Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Scott Oberg in the eighth inning of Game 1 of a baseball doubleheader Saturday, May 23, 2015, in Denver. The Giants won 10-8. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
AP Photo/David Zalubowski
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Giants second baseman Joe Panik missed nearly all of August and September last season due to a nagging back injury, but he told Alex Pavlovic of CSNBayArea.com on Friday that he’s feeling “100 percent.”

Panik, who earned his first All-Star selection last season, originally landed on the disabled list in early August due to what was described as lower back inflammation. He made his return in September, but appeared in just three games before being shut down. The good news is that he was cleared by doctors in mid-December and considers himself “back to normal.”

“It was right around the time of all the signings,” he said, smiling. “I was able to fly under the radar. I got tested and everything had healed up. I got cleared and was able to have my full offseason workouts. I’m good to go. I’m happy to be feeling good and going back out on the field to show that I’m healthy. My swing feels strong.”

Panik altered his offseason workout routine and plans to spend less time in his spikes in the early part of spring training. The hope is that these changes will prevent future issues.

After a strong showing as a rookie in 2014, the 25-year-old Panik proved to be one of the best second baseman in the majors last season by batting .312/.378/.455 with eight home runs and 37 RBI over 100 games while playing solid defense.

Baseball America names Corey Seager as baseball’s top prospect

Los Angeles Dodgers' Corey Seager follows through a single that scored Austin Barnes, in front of Colorado Rockies' Wilin Rosario during the sixth inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)
AP Photo/Danny Moloshok
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Baseball America unveiled their top 100 prospect list Friday night during a special on MLB Network. It should come as no surprise that Dodgers infielder Corey Seager came in at No. 1.

This makes Seager the consensus top prospect in the game. He was also ranked first by MLB.com, Baseball Prospectus, and ESPN’s Keith Law. Twins outfielder Byron Buxton was ranked second on all four lists.

Baseball America has the most aggressive ranking of Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada from the Red Sox, who checked in at No. 3. He was followed by pitching prospects Lucas Giolito from the Nationals and Julio Urias from the Dodgers to round out the top five.

You can see Baseball America’s full top 100 list here.

Jenrry Mejia: “It is not like they say. I am sure that I did not use anything.”

New York Mets' Jenrry Mejia reacts after getting the last out against the Milwaukee Brewers during the ninth inning of a baseball game Friday, July 25, 2014, in Milwaukee. The Mets won 3-2. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)
AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps
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Mets reliever Jenrry Mejia was permanently suspended on Friday after testing positive for a third time for a performance-enhancing drug. The right-hander is maintaining his innocence, as ESPN’s Adam Rubin notes in quoting Dominican sports journalist Hector Gomez. Mejia said, “It is not like they say. I am sure that I did not use anything.”

Mejia has the opportunity to petition commissioner Rob Manfred in one year for reinstatement to Major League Baseball. However, he must sit out at least two years before becoming eligible to pitch in the majors again, which would mean Mejia would be 28 years old.

Over parts of five seasons, Mejia has a career 3.68 ERA with 162 strikeouts and 76 walks over 183 1/3 innings. He was once a top prospect in the Mets’ minor league system and a top-100 overall prospect heading into the 2010 and ’11 seasons.

Bryce Harper on potential $400 million contract: “Don’t sell me short.”

Bryce Harper
AP Photo/Nick Wass
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Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper is at least three years away from free agency, but people are already contemplating just how large a contract the phenom will be able to negotiate, especially after taking home the National League Most Valuable Player Award for his performance this past season.

When the likes of David Price and Zack Greinke are signing for over $200 million at the age of 30 or older, it stands to reason that Harper could draw more as a 26-year-old if he can maintain MVP-esque levels of production over the next several seasons. $400 million might not be enough for Harper, though, as MLB.com’s Jamal Collier reports. He said, “Don’t sell me short,” which is a fantastic response.

During the 2015 season, Harper led the majors with a .460 on-base percentage and a .649 slugging percentage while leading the National League with 42 home runs and 118 runs scored. He also knocked in 99 runs for good measure. Harper and Ted Williams are the only hitters in baseball history to put up an adjusted OPS of 195 or better (100 is average) at the age of 22 or younger.