Great Moments in Health Insurance Claims for Injured Players

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From 2006, regarding Jeff Bagwell:

Attorneys for the Houston Astros filed a lawsuit in state district court here Monday afternoon against Connecticut General Life Insurance Co., claiming breach of contract because the insurer denied the Astros’ claim to recoup $15.6 million of injured first baseman Jeff Bagwell’s $17 million contract … The Astros filed the insurance claim late in January, a few days prior to the Jan. 31 deadline. On March 28, Connecticut General rejected the claim, contending Bagwell had not become more disabled since he played in the World Series in October 2005.

From 2003, regarding Randy Myers:

The club contended the famous insurance carrier acted in bad faith when it denied a claim by the Padres over whether the club was due $8 million compensation for the two seasons (1999-2000) that Myers was unable to play because of arm injuries … After filing a claim, the Padres heard nothing from the carrier for 16 months, according to court papers. Lloyd’s balked at paying the claim and, according to court papers, argued two apparently conflicting points. The insurer said that Myers’ disabling injury occurred in April 1999, after the insurance policy expired. Lloyd’s also contended that Myers’ health problems could have been diagnosed as early as 1993 before the policy was enacted.

But sure, even though insurance companies fight $8 million and $17 million claims for years, there is every reason to think that one wouldn’t fight a $114 million claim for A-Rod.  They’d clearly understand that paying up was in the best interest of the Yankees and their fans and do their duty, right?

(thanks to readers @GrandCards and Chris Garber for the links)

Marlins, Giants get into heated beanball war

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You may have heard that Giants closer Hunter Strickland broke his hand punching a door in frustration after Monday night’s subpar performance. He’ll miss six to eight weeks as a result. Strickland came in to protect a 4-2 lead but ended up giving up three runs. The tying run was knocked in by Lewis Brinson on a single to right field. Brinson moved to third base on a go-ahead single by Miguel Rojas, which prompted manager Bruce Bochy to take Strickland out of the game.

On his way to the dugout, Strickland started chirping at Brinson. Much like Bryce Harper and Strickland, Brinson and Strickland have a bit of a history. Last Thursday, Brinson handed Strickland a blown save with a sacrifice fly to deep center field. Brinson was happy to help his team tie the game, pumping his fast and saying, “Let’s go” at no one in particular. That rubbed Strickland the wrong way. Everything seems to rub Strickland the wrong way.

During Tuesday night’s game, Giants starter Dereck Rodriguez threw at Brinson with the first pitch, a 92 MPH fastball. Home plate umpire Andy Fletcher issued warnings to both benches. Manager Don Mattingly came out to argue, suggesting that his team hadn’t done anything wrong so it was unfair to essentially take the inside part of the plate away from his pitchers. On his way back to the dugout, Mattingly could be seen saying, “You’re next” to catcher Buster Posey.

The Giants scored twice in the bottom of the second against Dan Straily to extend their lead to 3-0. Posey came to the plate with a runner on first base and one out. Straily hit Posey with a 91 MPH fastball on the first pitch, prompting ejections of both Straily and Mattingly. Posey was hit on the arm. If the pitch had come in a bit lower and hit Posey on the wrist or hand, Posey might have had to go on the disabled list for a couple months. Or if the pitch had hit Posey a couple of inches higher, in the head, then who knows what would have happened.

Things calmed down from there, thankfully. The two clubs have one more game against each other in San Francisco on Wednesday and that will be the final time they meet this season. If anything further is going to happen — and hopefully, nothing happens — then it will come tomorrow.

Straily will almost certainly be facing a suspension and a fine, as will Mattingly. It’s less clear if Rodriguez and/or Bochy will be reprimanded for throwing at Brinson, even though it was fairly obvious the pitch was intentional. Regardless, the punishments amount to just one missed start for the pitchers, which isn’t nearly enough of a detriment to deter beanball wars.