Sometimes I have lottery fantasies. One of the top things I’d do if I suddenly won, like, $50 million, would be to devote my life to driving around. Just driving. After a while, though, you’d have to develop a plan of attack, because otherwise you’re just a drifter, so I think up themed road trips. This is a great themed road trip:
Nearly every baseball season for the past 25 years, he and three buddies from law school and college have taken in a major-league series at an “endangered” ballpark. They call it the Dead Stadium Tour.
The four baseball junkies, of whom Ondrovic is the official archivist and photographer, have visited 18 now-defunct Major League parks. They’ve seen Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Tiger Stadium in Detroit, the Seattle Kingdome and many spots in between.
I’d take a bottle with me to each one and pour one out for those who used to call those parks home.
Here’s their website.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.
Veteran Omar Infante has spent the overwhelming majority of his career as an infielder, but the Tigers plan to give him some playing time in center field this spring. The Tigers’ center field situation is still murky and adding more versatility would increase Infante’s odds of making the roster.
Infante, 35, signed a minor league deal with the Tigers in December. He played 39 games for the Royals last season, batting .239/.279/.321 in 149 plate appearances while playing second base exclusively. Infante last played in the outfield in 2010 with the Braves, and last played center field specifically in ’09 with the Braves.
The Tigers currently have Mikie Mahtook, Tyler Collins, and JaCoby Jones at the top of their center field depth chart. It is not what one would call “optimal.”