Quote of the Day: Ryan Howard

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Ryan Howard hit a homer yesterday, breaking an 0 for 14 skid. More importantly, he hit the walkoff RBI single in the 15th inning of the game, giving the Phillies the win. Afterward, he started workshopping lyrics to his own personal version of “Forgot about Dre”:

“I think you guys forget what I’ve done. You guys look at what’s going on right now. People forget what I’ve done.”

I don’t think people forget. They’re just sad it doesn’t happen that much anymore. Philly fans can be a lot of things, but I haven’t seen many who hold any personal animosity toward Ryan Howard. They blame Amaro for his contract, not Howard. They wish Howard was a 58-homer hitting guy again, they don’t hate him for not being that.

But whatever Howard is now, it’s nice to see him be defiant like this. The man still has a ton of pride, despite the quasi-benching and the heaps of people pointing out his deficiencies these days.

I never root for the Phillies, but I sorta root for Ryan Howard sometimes. He’s hard not to like and it’s hard not to feel happy for him when he comes through.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.