A.J. Burnett, no stranger to retirement speculation, put a line in the sand. He said, “I got one (season) left,” reports Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Burnett declined a $15 million mutual option for 2015 with the Phillies on November 1, then signed with the Pirates on a one-year, $8.5 million deal two weeks later.
On his decision to return to the Pirates, Burnett said, “I wanted to make sure I went somewhere where I was happy but also had a chance to win.”
The 38-year-old right-hander finished the 2014 season with a disappointing 4.59 ERA, leading the league with 18 losses and 96 walks in 213 2/3 innings.
John Altobelli was the coach of the Orange Coast College baseball team in Califorinia. He was well known in and around Major League Baseball having worked with and mentored several men who went on to big league careers. There was an excellent profile of him recently at The Athletic.
Altobelli was also a friend of Kobe Bryant’s, and his daughter Alyssa, like Bryant’s daughter Gianna, were members of the Mamba Sports Academy. John and Alyssa Altobelli were, unfortunately, traveling with the Bryants and others to a basketball tournament when their helicopter crashed killing all nine on board.
At Bryant’s memorial service in Los Angeles yesterday, Los Angeles Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka said that he was texting with Bryant minutes before Bryant’s death. During the flight, it seems, Bryant reached out Pelinka to see whether he knew “a certain baseball agent in Southern California,” because he wanted help Altobelli’s other daughter, sixteen-year-old Lexi, find an internship with one.
Today the Los Angeles Times reports that that “certain baseball agent” was Scott Boras and that, yes, he has stepped in to offer Lexi Altobelli an internship. Lexi Altobelli will rotate through marketing, baseball operations, sports science and office administration among other areas of Boras Corp.
Nice move, Scott.