A series of very sad tweets by Jose Canseco

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Jose Canseco has taken to Twitter the past few days, talking about his desire to play baseball again. Among the more notable tweets:

  • I can dh for any major league team and lead the league in home runs,just give me the chance
  • I will show everyone that steroids are completely overrated once I get the chance to play aqgain.all I need is the chance
  • If a team would give me the chance I would not let them down.baseball is my life,I miss the game its part of me,its my addiction
  • I will not give up the dream of playing in the majors again,I just cant
  • If you love something and it defines you ,never give it up
  • I dream about playing almost every night.when I wake up and realize I am not anymore that’s when the nightmare begins
  • I am and will always be just simply a basball player,my tomb stone will just say. Baseball.
  • Why is everyone so negative,I will play again
  • Life is about beleivinging in something

Those last two came after many began to mock him in reply.

I won’t mock Jose Canseco. Not for this anyway.  He’s being honest about how he feels and there’s no crime in that.

But it’s hard not to pity him.  Because even if he had never become the poster child for PEDs in baseball and even if he had not exposed his former teammates and colleagues in his books, Canseco would not have a chance to play baseball again.  He’s 46-years-old. He hasn’t played truly competitive baseball for a decade. It’s not happening, and wouldn’t happen even if Canseco’s wasn’t blackballed from the game as he frequently claims.  He’s too old. He may be in physical shape, but he’s no longer in baseball shape. Baseball, even at its most meritocratic, is unforgiving in that way.

Canseco’s post-baseball life and career shows how extreme a gulf there is between that at which he excelled — putting a hurt on a baseball — and that to which he is left. Celebrity. Infamy. Based on some of his late night tweets I even imagine loneliness.  All players have adjustment problems to some degree or another, but Canseco’s seem quite extreme.

I hope that I’m just reading too much into some random tweets.  But if not, I hope Canseco gets some help. Because he sounds like he’s crying out for it.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.