Craig Calcaterra

Barry Bonds just beat all the Marlins hitters in a home run contest

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There is no context for this yet apart from this tweet. I’m sure the story will come. But for now let the record reflect, courtesy of Craig Mish, that Barry Bonds just beat the Marlins players on a back field batting practice home run contest. All players. “Including Stanton.”

I don’t know if the players had a handicap. I don’t care if Giancarlo Stanton was batting left-handed. I don’t care if Bonds was hitting golf balls with a driver while the players were facing full-speed BP from Jose Fernandez. I’m just gonna let my 1990s-2000s self enjoy this bit of news about the greatest hitter I ever saw in my lifetime beating a bunch of major leaguers in a home run hitting contest at age 51.

Then I’m gonna imagine that he rode off into the sunset on the back of a bear with some whistling Spaghetti western theme music playing as he disappeared, too weird too live, too rare to die.

The A-Rod vs. Big Papi feud is over

Alex Rodriguez
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One of the many bridges Alex Rodrigues burned during his unsuccessful scorched-Earth legal and p.r. offensive in response to the Biogenesis scandal was the one between him and David Ortiz.

The two had been friends back in the day but in 2014 A-Rod’s legal team pointed a finger at Big Papi as a player with PED associations who did not get the kind of scrutiny A-Rod received. The comment, from Rodriguez lawyer Joe Tacopina, was “I’m not going to start naming all the other players, but some of them are God-like in Boston right now.” It led to some bad blood between Ortiz and the Yankees’ DH.

Now, however, the hatchet appears to have been buried. Scott Lauber of ESPN Boston reports that the two met briefly at Jet Blue Park in Fort Myers before the Yankees-Red Sox game last night. Rodriguez says it’s all good. Lauber notes that in another interview, Ortiz said that they’re “at peace.”

Rodriguez will never be anywhere close to the most popular figure in baseball, but he’s doing his best to mend fences, it seems. Or, um, un-burn bridges. Or whatever.

Lance McCullers to start the year on the disabled list

Lance McCullers
Associated Press
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Jose de Jesus Ortiz of the Houston Chronicle reports that Astros righty Lance McCullers will start the season on the disabled list.

McCullers has an MRI on his pitching shoulder last week after experiencing some soreness. He said the MRI came back “clean,” but did not have a timetable for his return to action. The DL move certainly suggests that, even if there is no serious issue there, the Astros are going to take their time easing McCullers back into action.

McCullers made 22 starts as a rookie last year, posting a 6-7 record with a 3.22 ERA and 129 strikeouts over 125 and two-thirds innings. He’s an important part of Houston’s plans, but it’s certainly more important for him to be sure to be available in the summer than it is in the spring.