The Miami New Times has realized that Major League Baseball is a business, not an arm of the government, and has decided not to hand over the records of the Biogenesis clinic to the league. But the best part of it all is one of the reasons: Jeff Loria.
The New Times — perhaps a little self-servingly, given that they have ripped Loria often in the past — details Loria’s history of mismanagement and bad deeds, notes that Bud Selig is supposed to act in the best interests of baseball, and that he has nonetheless enabled Loria for over a decade. They go on:
So this is the guy who wants our records? Isn’t he the same commissioner who in 2002 approved the complicated deal that gave Loria the Marlins, betrayed the City of Montreal, and caused Loria’s partners to accuse the artful merchant of racketeering? … he represents an organization with a long history of getting things wrong …
The New Times goes on to cite every transgression in baseball history — from the Black Sox on down — and says Major League Baseball is responsible. Then notes, specifically, that Selig was on watch while steroids flourished in baseball and guys like Mark McGwire continue to allowed to be part of the game, and worries that Selig may misuse the records to hand out uneven discipline or the like.
It’s all rather amusing, actually, even if the justifications for not handing them over which are attributable to baseball’s misdeeds are all over the map (really? Selig has to pay for the Black Sox scandal and segregation now?). And even if later in the editorial the New Times notes that the real reasons were journalistic ethics, worry about future leakers having their info and identity disseminated against their will and — this seems like the biggest reason — there is an ongoing state investigation into Anthony Bosch that the New Times feel will be imperiled if they hand over records to anyone else.
The important thing here, I think, is the result. It’s just bad form for a newspaper to hand over its investigative records to some private business. One which clearly has a conflict of interest to boot. So even if the New Times’ reasoning here is all rather, well, odd and funny, the right decision was reached.
Dodgers’ left fielder Andrew Toles crushed his first spring training home run on Saturday afternoon. With the bases loaded and a two-run deficit hanging over their heads in the fourth inning, Toles stepped up to the plate against Oakland right-hander Jesse Hahn and unloaded a grand slam on the second pitch he saw.
Third baseman Justin Turner was quick to follow up with a solo jack of his own, bringing the score to a comfortable 7-4 lead by the end of the fourth. Another three-run outburst in the fifth and an eighth-inning RBI single by Austin Barnes raised the final score to 11-6… which, coincidentally, was the same score the Reds used to defeat the Athletics’ second split-squad lineup on Saturday (albeit with a few more RBI walks than grand slams).
Toles, 24, is approaching his sophomore season with the Dodgers in 2017. He slashed .314/.365/.505 with three home runs and an .870 OPS in his first major league season in 2016 and is expected to platoon with the right-handed Franklin Gutierrez in left field this year.
David Price showed “strength improvements” in his elbow on Saturday, but Red Sox’ manager John Farrell still doesn’t think the left-hander will be ready to throw by the start of the season — or for a few weeks afterward. According to ESPN’s Scott Lauber, the 31-year-old might not be ready to debut until May at the earliest.
Price hasn’t thrown off of a mound this spring after experiencing soreness in his left elbow on March 1. Surgery doesn’t appear to be necessary, but the Red Sox are playing it extra safe with their No. 3 starter in hopes that rest and rehabilitation will return him to full health sometime during the 2017 season. For now, Price has been restricted to short games of catch until he’s cleared to resume a more rigorous throwing program. Via MLB.com’s Ian Browne:
[There were] strength improvements to the point of putting the ball back in his hand a little more consistently,” said manager John Farrell. “Today’s the first step for that. A short game of catch. That’s what he’s going through. Not off a mound but just to get the arm moving with a ball in flight, and he will continue in this phase for a period of time. There’s no set distance and volume yet to the throws.
The lefty is coming off of a lackluster 2016 season, during which he delivered a 3.99 ERA, 2.0 BB/9 and 8.9 SO/9 over 230 innings for the Red Sox.