Luke Scott: “Obama does not represent America … he was not born here”

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Yesterday Orioles’ DH Luke Scott came into the media room here at the Winter Meetings. No real reason, it seemed. He was with Buck Showalter when Showalter was doing his manager availability, and was kind of standing around. I snapped this picture of him because I thought it was pretty sweet that he was walking around with a new beard, a trucker’s cap and an 8×10 glossy of deer that he killed.

After I took the pic Dave Brown of Yahoo! went over to talk to Scott. For those who don’t know, Dave is a fantastic interviewer, with his Answer Man columns easily topping any Q and A out there.  He always manages to elicit fun stuff from his subjects.  I’m not sure what he got out of Scott can be classified as “fun,” however. More like “nutsy, unhinged crapola.”

After a lot of conversation about hunting, Scott made some comments about socialism. Dave asked him what he thought of the job Obama is doing. Scott launched into outer space:

Obama … hmm … Obama does not represent America. Nor does he represent anything what our forefathers stood for … He was not born here. That’s my belief. I was born here. If someone accuses me of not being born here, I can go — within 10 minutes — to my filing cabinet and I can pick up my real birth certificate and I can go, “See? Look! Here it is.

At which point in the column Dave provides a link and an image of Obama’s birth certificate. Because it exists and it is valid and people who argue to the contrary are either idiots or liars or sheep or all three.

So, Luke Scott: excellent hitter. Polite fellow in person. Complete nutjob.

Audio of Scott’s comments is available on this MSNBC report.

Mariners claim Kaleb Cowart off waivers from Angels

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The Mariners announced that the club claimed Kaleb Cowart off waivers from the Angels. Interestingly, the Mariners list Cowart as both an outfielder and a right-handed pitcher. Cowart has never pitched professionally, but the Mariners will try him as a two-way player next season, Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports. Cowart was a highly regarded pitcher in high school.

Cowart, 26, has played all over the field, spending most of his time at third base and second base, but also logging a handful of innings at first base, shortstop, and left field.  He hasn’t hit much at all, owning a career .177/.241/.293 triple-slash line across 380 plate appearances in the big leagues. It makes sense to try another angle.

Shohei Ohtani, of course, is helping to popularize the rebirth of the two-way player. In his first year in the majors after having played in Japan for five years, Ohtani won the AL Rookie of the Year Award by posting a .925 OPS in 367 plate appearances along with a 3.31 ERA over 10 starts. Don’t expect Cowart to hit those lofty numbers, but additional versatility could prolong his life in the majors.