Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com spoke to David Ortiz about a number of topics yesterday. One of them was the Biogenesis thing. Ortiz didn’t get into any specifics, obviously, but this was fun:
“When I first heard about [players being linked to the clinic],” he said. “I started saying that us, as baseball players, we pretty much might be the dumbest athletes of all the sports because there’s a history of players doing things like that and later on getting caught. We’re talking about six or seven years. So how come in 2011 or 2012, there are players still being caught in the same situation?
Maybe. But that NBA player just got busted and some people say you gotta be a special kind of stupid to get busted for PEDs in the NBA.
Maybe they should put Ortiz in charge of the investigation. I’m sure he’ll get to the bottom of this.
Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports that the Phillies are close to signing free agent reliever Joaquin Benoit. An announcement is expected before the winter meetings end on Thursday.
Benoit, 39, has quietly been among the better relievers in baseball over the past seven years. This past season with the Mariners and Blue Jays, the right-hander put up an aggregate 2.81 ERA with a 52/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings. That included a 0.38 ERA in 23 2/3 innings after the Jays acquired him from the Mariners.
Benoit suffered a torn calf muscle during a benches-clearing brawl with the Yankees near the end of the regular season. He’s expected to be healthy for spring training.
The Phillies have now added three relievers this offseason with Benoit, Pat Neshek, and David Rollins.
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez provides a previously unreported detail of the new collective bargaining agreement, agreed to by the owners and the players’ union last week. Players’ meal money for road games is being reduced from $105 to $30 per day. Teams are providing pre- and post-game meals in the visitors’ clubhouse to offset some of the decrease in meal money.
Gomez quotes an unnamed player who said, “I doubt many guys know about the money going down, nor would they have agreed to it.” All of the players Gomez contacted said they were unaware of and unhappy about the change.
Clubhouse attendants are certainly unhappy about this change, too. As Gomez notes, the attendants previously provided food for visiting teams which earned them tips from the players.
EDIT: It’s worth clarifying that chefs are required in clubhouses now as part of the new CBA, so it’s not a complete loss for the players.