“If the Boss was still alive!” watch

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BSOHL is our favorite beat-like-a-dead-horse meme around these parts. Our third favorite one is the stuff about how Don Drysdale and Bob Gibson would’ve decapitated someone for, well, whatever somebody did in yesterday’s ballgame that an old sportswriter didn’t like.

But our second favorite one is “If the Boss was still alive!” columns. You know how those work: when a New York columnist lacks an angle and decides to channel the glory days of George Steinbrenner. And, of course, it’s almost always writers whose own glory days happen to correspond with those of George Steinbrenner.

Bill Madden of the Daily News is good for a couple of these a year. Here he is this morning, noting that George Steinbrenner often got upset when, as the 2015 Yankees just did, his Yankees dropped spring training games to the Mets. He sets up with an old (but good!) Steinbrenner anecdote, notes that people don’t take spring training games seriously like he did anymore and how, as such, no one with the 2015 Yankees had an outburst about the losses to the Mets like Big Stein would’ve. Then closes with, of course, a question to Joe Girardi about how The Boss would’ve reacted if he were still alive.

Which, hey, it’s New York and they’re gonna do this until every single person with a living memory of Steinbrenner has died or retired. I’d only wish that when they do do this they’d note for the record that, when it came to stuff like this, Steinbrenner was a certified crazy person who completely lacked perspective about certain things. And that, as such, wondering what he might do in the current situation is akin to asking what David Berkowitz might do if the next door neighbor’s dog won’t stop barking.

Carlos Martínez to pitch out of bullpen upon return from injured list

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Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said pitcher Carlos Martínez will work out of the bullpen when he returns from the injured list, The Athletic’s Mark Saxon reports. Shildt noted that the decision is based on Martínez’s needs rather than the team’s needs, which suggests he may not yet have the strength to pitch as a starter.

Martínez, 27, opened the season on the injured list due to a right rotator cuff strain. The right-hander was also injured last year, battling lat and oblique injuries. He will go to extended spring training and likely begin a minor league rehab assignment next week. Based on that time frame, Martínez should be activated around mid-May.

Last year, Martínez made 18 starts and 15 relief appearances, posting a 3.11 ERA with five saves and a 117/60 K/BB ratio across 118 2/3 innings. It is unclear what role(s) Martínez will have in the bullpen, but he could eventually help set up for closer Jordan Hicks.