francisco cervelli getty

Oh joy, we get to revel in PED names being named again

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I assume there is a long German word that describes the simultaneous disgust at seeing PED users’ names revealed and the joy with which we get to shame them. It’s probably something like GreggDoyelSchenfruede or something like that:

I have a list. So do you, right? If you’re a baseball fan and you’re hearing that more names are about to be connected to Biogenesis, the cheatingest PED factory since BALCO, this is where you dig through your mental rolodex for the names of guys you’re sure are cheating.

Don’t worry, Doyel is no going to do so something as irresponsible as name names with no evidence. But he has promised to tell you later if they were on his list. Which, I assume was constructed with great scientific rigor.

What do I look for? I’ll tell you some day, when the list comes out and if any of my names are on there. I figure one of them will be at least. This stuff is easy, really. It’s simple to look at certain guys and just think, just know, “He’s not doing that legally.” Especially given what we know about the nature of baseball, just like the nature of sprinting and cycling. Certain things have never been possible before, and while breakthroughs and advances do happen, there are some ceilings that get cracked that just don’t seem plausible. Not legally plausible, anyway.

So true. I mean, when I look at the feats of Everth Cabrera, Jhonny Peralta, Antonio Bastardo, Francisco Cervelli, Jordany Valdespin, Jesús Montero, César Puello, Sergio Escalona, Fernando Martínez, Fautino de los Santos and Jordan Norberto my first thought is “It’s so obvious. The things they have done are utterly IMPOSSIBLE! Let me go check my list, ah, yes. There they are.”

But I have spoken with Doyel online before and I do believe his anger and outrage at PED users is genuine. I just also happen to believe that he would do better, as would we all, if instead of channeling that anger and outrage into a parlor game of speculation, name-naming and player shaming, we actually thought about came up with some ideas about how and why guys cheat and whether trotting out lists of names for public ridicule and nothing more is the best way to go about it. George Mitchell did that several years ago. It hasn’t really worked out.

But I truly do hope that your list is correct, Gregg. It will truly mean something then.

Giants sign catcher Nick Hundley

DENVER, CO - JUNE 07:  Nick Hundley #4 of the Colorado Rockies takes an at bat against the Miami Marlins at Coors Field on June 7, 2015 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
Getty Images
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Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury News reports that the Giants have signed catcher Nick Hundley. It’s a major league deal worth $2 million.

Hundley, who is 33, but who seems like he’s been in the bigs for about 27 years, hit .260/.320/.439 with 10 homers in 83 games for the Rockies last season. Obviously he will be the backup given the presence of Buster Posey.

MLB reorganizes its diversity and social responsibility leadership structure

Billy Bean
Associated Press
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Major League Baseball has experienced inconsistent progress in its efforts at promoting diversity and social responsibility in recent years despite making it a league priority.  Today it has announced several changes in its leadership structure in these areas, with Commissioner Manfred saying, “As the sport of Jackie Robinson and Roberto Clemente, we have a responsibility to uphold and honor their legacies, especially in ensuring that our sport and business practices are as inclusive, diverse and socially-conscious as possible.”

To that end:

  • Billy Bean has been promoted to Vice President and Special Assistant to the Commissioner. This is a newly-created and elevated position in which Bean will continue his efforts at promoting human rights issues important to Major League Baseball, with a particular focus on LGBT and anti-bullying efforts. He has done such work since 2014 as its Ambassador for Inclusion, but putting him at the vice presidential level and having him answer directly to Commissioner Manfred increases his profile and that of his mission;
  • Renée Tirado, has been promoted to Vice President of Talent Acquisition and Diversity & Inclusion. Tirado had previously served as Senior Director of Recruitment. She will direct the implementation of recruitment plans and procedures to support MLB’s staffing objectives and will oversee MLB’s Diversity Pipeline Program. As you may recall, Major League Baseball has struggled mightily in these effort in recent years, and has admitted as much; and
  • Melanie LeGrande has been promoted to Vice President of Social Responsibility. She previously served as MLB’s Director of Community Affairs. Her job will be to develop and enhance the initiatives that support MLB’s position in the community and oversee MLB’s community investments, nonprofit/non-governmental organization partnerships, large-scale disaster relief efforts and employee volunteer engagement.

Manfred said, “the promotions of Billy, Renée and Melanie reflect our commitment to have strong, innovative leadership in place that aligns our industry objectives with a desire to be effective corporate citizens.”

While all of these are current employees who have served in roughly similar roles. A business’ organizational chart says much about how much that business values various functions and initiatives. In keeping with Manfred’s comments, that all three of these people have been promoted to the vice presidential level is a strong signal from MLB about what it wants.

Now all it has to do is follow through and get what it wants.