A federal jury today acquitted Roger Clemens of perjury, stemming from charges he lied to Congress while denying using steroids.
The News' Mike Harrington takes a look at Clemens' Hall of Fame chances and the damage done to his reputation:
June 18, 2012 - 5:39 PM
A federal jury today acquitted Roger Clemens of perjury, stemming from charges he lied to Congress while denying using steroids.
The News' Mike Harrington takes a look at Clemens' Hall of Fame chances and the damage done to his reputation:
May 30, 2012 - 5:50 PM
Mets pitching prospect Jenrry Mejia will don a Buffalo Bisons uniform for the first time in more than a year tonight as he continues to make his way back from Tommy John surgery.
Mejia's comeback hits the Triple-A level after four comeback starts, two at Class A St. Lucie and two at Double-A Binghamton. He's gone at least five innings but no more than six in four of those startsq.
Mejia left Buffalo's April 29, 2011 game at Rochester after four innings upon experiencing discomfort in his right elbow. He was diagnosed with a tear in the ulnar collateral ligament and underwent surgery three weeks later. The 22-year-old righty from the Dominican Republic entered 2011 as the organization's top-rated prospect by Baseball America.
This is the third game of the four-game set with Columbus, with the Bisons having won the first two. The series concludes at 10:35 tomorrow morning.
Ezequiel Carrera, cf
Jason Donald, ss
Cord Phelps, 2b
Matt LaPorta, lf
Jared Goedert, rf
Russ Canzler, 1b
Beau Mills, dh
Andy LaRoche, 3b
Matt Pagnozzi, c
David Huff, p (3-1, 3.08)
Corey Wimberly, cf
Josh Thole, dh
Valentino Pascucci, rf
Fred Lewis, lf
Matt Tuiasosopo, 3b
Josh Satin, 1b
Brad Emaus, 2b
Lucas May, c
Sean Kazmar, ss
Jenrry Mejia, p (0-0, 0.00)
-- Bob DiCesare
January 25, 2012 - 12:48 PM
No more carping allowed from anybody that no one can compete with the Yankees and Red Sox. Look at the stupid money this offseason: Angels (Albert Pujols), Rangers (Yu Darvish) and now Tigers (Prince Fielder).
I'm still trying to put my arms around Fielder's nine-year, $214-million deal. The Tigers certainly were in panic mode when Victor Martinez went down and owner Mike Illitch isn't getting any younger at 82. He's won a lot with the Red Wings and I was told by several people at the World Series how downcast he was when the Tigers lost the ALCS in Texas last year. Sounds like he's just going for it now and longterm consequences be damned.
It makes the Tigers the runaway favorite in the AL Central and probably the favorite in the entire American League for the World Series. What a lineup with Fielder and Miguel Cabrera and, of course, they already have the MVP in Justin Verlander.
Mitch Albom says the prevailing word is "Big" in his column on Fielder in today's Detroit Free Press. A good read. Be sure to read an Inside Baseball column I'll have in Sunday's paper. By then, I should have my thoughts collected. That's a lotta coin.
September 30, 2011 - 10:02 AM
While the Red Sox are going through the process of not renewing Terry Francona's contract today (e.g. he's getting fired), the real focus of the baseball world is the start of the postseason. The American League division series opens on two fronts with the Rays and Rangers meeting in Texas and the Yankees and Tigers meeting in the Bronx. That's Justin Verlander and CC Sabathia and that's must-see TV.
Right from the top, I'll put this out there: I got the Tigers and the Phillies in the World Series and I'm taking the Phillies in six. Sorry, Yankees fans. If Sabathia doesn't win tonight, I think it's possible the Tigers sweep the Bombers in three. And wouldn't that make for an interesting offseason. Remember, all division series games are on TBS.
So here's some quick analysis off the cuff. Hey, I gotta do Sunday's Inside Baseball column on the collapse of the Sox and Braves and I'm still working hockey previews too. Some multi-tasking. I give you some polls at the bottom too. Be sure and vote!
Tigers vs. Yankees -- I know all about the Bombers' offense but you have to like the Tigers' combination of Verlander, Doug Fister and Max Scherzer. You have to love closer Jose Valverde. Miguel Cabrera should get plenty of MVP looks. As for the Yankees, can you really count on Ivan Nova and Freddy Garcia in this spot? Seriously? And does A-Rod show up in this series or bat eighth like he did in when he was humiliated in Game Four in Detroit in 2006. Tigers in four.
Rays vs. Rangers -- I'm tempted, very/very tempted, to pick the Rays to go to the World Series. Maybe I should. Now that they're actually in the postseason, they have the best starting pitching in the AL. I think they get through this series and avenge last year's division series loss but you wonder how much energy they have left after that crazy September. Rays in five.
Cardinals vs. Phillies -- I don't think a lot of analysis is needed. The Phillies' losing streak near the end of the season was rooted in injuries and boredom after clinching the division title. They're ready. Halladay-Lee-Hamels-Oswalt with Worley in the bullpen. Do they need a bullpen? This is one of Tony LaRussa's better managing jobs but this is a case of thanks for playing and please drive home safely. Phillies in three.
Diamondbacks vs. Brewers -- Who had this matchup in March? Thought so. In Kirk Gibson and Ron Roenicke, you have your two main candidates for NL manager of the year. Think the Yankees wish 20-game winner Ian Kennedy had found his game when he was with them until waiting to getting to Arizona? The Dbacks are a great story but the Brewers have the motivation of Prince Fielder's last season. They have an MVP in Ryan Braun, a great rotation, a supreme closer in former Canisius College pitcher John Axford. I think Brewers-Phillies could be a fabulous NLCS. Can't wait. Brewers in four.
Now you vote.
September 29, 2011 - 9:16 AM
I saw every minute of it, well past midnight, and I still can't believe it. No one has ever seen a baseball season finish like that. The Rays were once down seven runs and still a run short and a strike away from losing, the Red Sox were a strike away from winning, the Braves two outs away from winning. And every result changed.
See you, chokers from Boston and Atlanta. Welcome to the playoffs, Rays and Cardinals. Take your places in home run history, Dan Johnson and Evan Longoria (showering fans at the Trop above).
Dan Shaughnessy of the Boston Globe might have the start on new fodder for more of his Curse of the Bambino books. Wrote Shaughnessy on Page A-1 of today's Globe: "Truly unbelievable. This feels like revenge for 2004 and 2007. It is as if the baseball gods are punishing Red Sox Nation for hubris and arrogance and good times that seemed so good, so good, so good."
I like this Shaughnessy crack too: "They are the first team in baseball history to hold a nine-game lead in September, then fail to make the postseason. This makes them worse than the ’64 Phillies or the ’78 Red Sox. They are the poster boys of the Heimlich maneuver."
Wrote great friend of the blog Jeff Jacobs of the Hartford Courant: "Now we know why 2004 happened. Now we know why 2004 was followed by 2007. Somehow the baseball gods knew Red Sox fans would never have been able to handle September 2011 if two exhilarating world championships hadn't interrupted all those decades of suffering. No, a few verses of Sweet Caroline and a pink hat under the Christmas tree aren't going to cure this hurt."
Another great friend, Mike Vaccaro of the New York Post, was in Baltimore and recaps the chronology of events by calling it "the single most-exciting, most intense, most exhilarating night in baseball history."
In the St. Petersburg Times, John Romano calls it "Miracles 2, logic 0" while recounting the Rays' bizarre finish through the eyes of several team personnel who weren't on the field.
No one, of course, paid much attention to the Braves' collapse given the Red Sox situation. But as Mark Bradley of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution wrote, "But even a choking dog can have his day, or night, and the 2011 Braves tried to give themselves one Wednesday. They failed. They failed in the way this entire month had been a failure."
The Cardinals took until the last night of the season to finally get it together and win their 90th game. And it was shades of the 1964 team that came back on the Phillies.
So there we have it. Yankees-Tigers and Rays-Rangers in the AL. Phillies-Cardinals and Diamondbacks-Brewers in the NL. No Red Sox, no Braves. No way you thought that could happen when September started.
Photos of Evan Longoria (left) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (right)/Associated Press
September 28, 2011 - 9:32 AM
It all comes down to this on the final day of the regular season: The Rays and choking Red Sox are both 90-71 in the AL, the Cardinals and choking Braves are both 89-72 in the NL. Will we decide the wildcards tonight or get one-game playoffs Thursday in Tampa Bay and St. Louis?
The schedule remains the same as the last two days -- Tampa hosting the Yankees and Boston at Baltimore, while the Braves host the Phillies and the Cardinals are in Houston. All night games. Have your remotes ready to be clicking between YES, ESPN and the MLB Network.
The Red Sox are 7-19 in September with a team ERA of 5.90. Once-impenetrable reliever Daniel Bard is 0-4, 11.90 and not trustworthy. Look at the starters' ERAs: Bedard and Wakefield, 5.25; Beckett 5.48, Lester 5.96, Lackey 9.13. The Rays have pulled even by going 16-10 despite a .237 team batting average in September. But that 3.50 team ERA sure helps.
The Braves, meanwhile, have gone 9-17 and hit just .235. Their team ERA of 4.25 isn't ghastly, especially when you consider Derek Lowe fell to 0-5, 8.75 in September when he was booed off the mound last night. The Cardinals are 17-8, batting .293 and have a 3.25 ERA.
See SABRhounds, I don't need a lot of made-up acronym stats to tell me why these races have changed this month.
How is this going to end up? Take the polls.
September 17, 2011 - 5:12 PM
TORONTO -- The celebration was relatively muted today in the Rogers Centre after Mariano Rivera pitched a perfect ninth inning in the Yankees' 7-6 win over the Blue Jays to tie Trevor Hoffman's all-time record with 601 career saves.
There was a big celebration Tuesday in Seattle for No. 600 and there will be a big one for No. 602 when Rivera breaks it, be it here Sunday or if it happens when the Yankees return home.
"Don't get me wrong,  is a great number but you have to hit 601 to get 602," Rivera said. "It's a great number but the most important thing is we won the game. We were down 6-1 and came back, pitched good after that."
"By being a Yankees as a player, manager and coach, you get to see a lot of great accomplishments," said manager Joe Girardi. "This is another one. You feel fortunate. ... What can you say about Mo? 602 is the big one because it just puts the final stamp on it that he's the greatest closer of all time.
"I don't think in this room we have any question. I don't want to take anything away from Trevor Hoffman but when you've been around Mo as long as I have, you've seen a lot of special things."
Click below to hear the audio of Rivera's meeting with reporters:
AP Photo: Catcher Russell Martin congratulates Rivera on No. 601.
September 2, 2011 - 3:49 PM
Perhaps it's a reflection of how completely unforgettable the Buffalo Bisons' season was on the field, but I have been deluged with inquiries about the Washington Nationals' Racing Presidents appearance Thursday night in Coca-Cola Field.
So I poked around YouTube and the folks at Buffalo.com posted a video of the Presidents' race, where Teddy -- who has never won -- got overcome by the aroma of Chicken Wing and forgot to finish a race he was leading and George got the win.
I haven't found any clip of the match race between Teddy and Celery that ended with neither one winning. The Presidents, by the way, visited Toronto, Niagara Falls and the Wilcox Mansion on their trip north and tweeted shots of each. They're also included at that link of the "Let Teddy Win" blog. Hey, the Nationals stink too so the folks in DC have to get some entertainment.
The Wilcox Mansion on Delaware, you ask? Come on, history buffs. That's where the real Teddy got inaugurated after the assassination of Wiliam McKinley here in 1901.
August 20, 2011 - 11:00 AM
I knew about the 5-4-3 triple play the Red Sox pulled against the Rays on Tuesday night (the first around-the-horn job in Sox history), but I completely missed the acrobatic 4-6-3-2 trifecta the Brewers pulled the next day against the Dodgers. That one, which finished with Prince Fielder nailing Matt Kemp at the plate, was simply sensational. The Brewers, in fact, became the first team since the 1953 Yankees to turn a triple play and four double plays in the same game.
Then Elias Sports came up with this nugget: It's the first time since 1981 we've had triple plays on consecutive days in the big leagues. Pretty rare indeed. Let's go to the video.
August 15, 2011 - 1:35 PM
There's the sausage race in Milwaukee and the pierogi race in Pittsburgh. Cleveland has an entertaining hot dog race (ketchup tends to get a little physical) and, of course, the Bisons have trotted out a Chicken Wing race this year that has turned Celery into a forlorn winless character that brings you back to the '62 Mets (or maybe the '09 Bisons).
But no mascot race has gotten as much sudden attention as the Presidents Race the Washington Nationals stage each night in Nationals Park. And George, Tom, Abe, and Teddy are coming to Buffalo for the Sept. 1 home finale as part of Bisons' Fan Appreciation Night ceremonies. The Presidents, who are regulars at the White House for various functions, will race and be available to fans during the game, which will also feature giveaways and a huge fireworks show after the final out.
Teddy has never won a race since it was born in 2006. Just like Celery has been an every-day loser so far this year. The Presidents have a wikipedia page with information on their history of races. The Nationals Web site has their official bios. The team also kept the standings on the site through 2010 with Abe leading with 154 wins and Teddy at 0.
There's even an entertaining blog -- called LetTeddywin -- that chronicles his efforts to finally win a race, complete with lots of video. Its current loss meter stands at 415 straight races.
Here's a look at the July 4 race.
August 13, 2011 - 11:45 PM
As part of Sunday's Inside Baseball column, I mentioned how former Lackawanna Little Leaguer Dave Sappelt made his big-league debut for the Reds last Sunday in Wrigley Field and it was a good first impression in an 8-7 victory.
Batting leadoff, Sappelt crushed the first pitch of the game for a line drive out to left field. But he later got his first big-league hit, a solid single to left, and made a diving catch of his own in left field.
Here's the video evidence of those two plays from MLB.com. Click the arrows in the upper left of the boxes to play.
July 14, 2011 - 1:43 PM
If you missed my look forward to the second half of the MLB season in today's editions, here's the link to the story. It's pretty fascinating to see there is tremendous parity in baseball even when the public perception is otherwise. In the last six years, 11 different teams have made the World Series! Pretty amazing.
My choice for a newcomer this year to that group would be the Brewers, especially now that they've acquired Francisco Rodriguez. That said, my prediction would still remain what I called in March -- the Phillies and the Red Sox. It's going to be really hard to knock either of them off come October.
So based on what you've seen so far and what you think might happen the rest of the way, take our little poll to choose who will be in the Fall Classic.
July 9, 2011 - 2:01 PM
Listing the 3,000-hit club, updated with its newest member:
Pete Rose 4,256
Ty Cobb 4,189
Hank Aaron 3,771
Stan Musial 3,630
Tris Speaker 3,514
Carl Yastrzemski 3,419
Honus Wagner 3,415
Paul Molitor 3,319
Eddie Collins 3,315
Willie Mays 3,283
Eddie Murray 3,255
Nap Lajoie 3,242
Cal Ripken Jr. 3,184
George Brett 3,154
Paul Waner 3,152
Robin Yount 3,142
Tony Gwynn 3,141
Dave Winfield 3,110
Craig Biggio, 3,060
Cap Anson, 3,055
Rickey Henderson 3,055
Rod Carew 3,053
Lou Brock 3,023
Rafael Palmeiro 3,020
Wade Boggs 3,010
Al Kaline 3,007
DEREK JETER 3,003
Roberto Clemente 3,000
Here's the video of the home run. Jeter and Boggs the only men to get 3,000 by going deep.
July 6, 2011 - 6:00 PM
CLEVELAND -- Joe Girardi said after last night's 9-2 Yankees win here that he was seriously considering giving Derek Jeter a rest tonight. That certainly prompted a lot of nervous reaction from ticket holders to the series finale in Progressive Field, many of whom probably were coming from Western New York.
Not to worry. Jeter, like he always does, lobbied to be in the lineup and he'll be in his customary leadoff spot tonight, four hits shy of the magic 3,000 mark for his career. You can watch it tonight at 7 on YES.
Sitting in a leather chair at his locker and surrounded by about two dozen reporters, Jeter said before tonight's game that his injured calf is fine and there would be no reason for him to sit out.
"His thing was how much I'm playing just coming back," Jeter said of Girardi. "I told him I was fine and that's pretty much the extent of it."
Jeter would like to get the milestone watch over with but said that wasn't a major factor in wanting to play tonight, especially since the Yankees are going home for the weekend to meet Tampa Bay in a four-game set starting tomorrow.
"If I had 500 hits, I'd still be wanting to play," he said. "This isn't the first time I've done it. I used to do the same thing with Mr. T [Joe Torre] when he tried to take me out. I want to play."
Girardi said he talked to Jeter after last night's game in his office and they then exchanged texts in the hotel. He slept on the thought of sitting Jeter down and then made up his mind today.
"What I realized is none of us know what it's like to be in pursuit of 3,000 hits," Girardi said. "We don't know what's going through his mind. Maybe it's worse in a sense if you're sitting around thinking about it. He swung the bat good last night. Physically, he feels well. He's healthy, he's rested. So why not get him back in there? He's had success off Masterton [going 5 for 12 in his career off Cleveland starter Justin Masterton]. Get him back in there and let's get this out of the way so can go about his business in a normal way."
July 2, 2011 - 9:36 AM
TORONTO -- I'm on the scene at Rogers Centre for a game I've had circled in my mind for two years. It's the return of Roy Halladay to Toronto to meet the Blue Jays as the Phillies are in town for a 1:07 first pitch. This was, remember, supposed to happen last year but the teams' interleague series had to be moved to Philly because the G-20 Summit was in Toronto and the ballpark was within the security perimeter.
So MLB, in a wise move, granted the Jays' wish of a rematch series against the Phils. To top it off, they gave it to them on a holiday weekend. So more than 45,000 packed the park on Canada Day for yesterday's 7-6 Phillies win and a similar throng should be in the house today.
Halladay got a huge ovation (see the MLB.com video here) and doffed his cap as he took the lineup card to home plate yesterday. There was a video tribute and the whole thing was done at the Blue Jays' request. He should get plenty of rousing cheers again today. While many ex-Jays have heard it here when they returned, Halladay was a beloved figure and almost no one blamed him for asking out in 2009 to try to get on a winner.
Halladay went 21-10 for the Phillies last year and then, of course, threw his playoff no-hitter against the Reds. He's 10-3 with a 2.40 ERA this season.
In the National Post, Jays pitcher Ricky Romero said, "He was the face of this franchise for such a long time,” Romero said. “He deserved a standing ovation. But as of [Saturday] I think he’s our enemy."
In the Toronto Star, veteran columnist Richard Griffin tells fans they should definitely stand and cheer when Halladay takes the mound.
In the Toronto Sun, Hall of Famer-to-be Bob Elliott has a neat read on several folks earliest recollections of Halladay.
June 29, 2011 - 12:01 AM
For all Ryne Sandberg accomplished during his Hall of Fame baseball career, June 23, 1984 stands out as the day he became a household name.
In a nationally televised game against the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field, the Chicago Cubs second baseman had a performance for the ages. He went 5-for-6 with two home runs and seven RBIs in a 12-11 victory in 11 innings. Sandberg hit a solo homer to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth inning and added a game-tying, two-run shot in the 10th. Both homers came off relief pitcher Bruce Sutter, who was the dominant closer of that era.
That game brought a lot of national attention not only to Sandberg but also to the Cubs, who emerged as contenders and advanced to the postseason for the first time in 39 years. Sandberg went on to win his only National League MVP award. He also began an amazing streak of 10 straight All-star game appearances and nine straight Gold Gloves. Not bad for a guy who played his first full season at second base in 1984.
"It was a one-game thing that elevated my thought of what I was as a player, more of an impact-type of a guy, a game-winning type of a player,'' said Sandberg, manager of the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, who beat the host Buffalo Bisons, 6-3, Tuesday in the first game of a four-game series.
"It was my third year in the Major Leagues at the time,'' he said. "I was only 24 years old. It really catapulted me to an MVP season and it also got the Cubs as a national draw. It was a great year. But June 23, which also happens to be my number, it also got me jumped ahead of [L.A. Dodger] Steve Sax as far as me going to the first of my 10 straight All-Star games. I was second place in the voting before that game and within four or five days after that, the game being the Saturday game of the week, I got a lot more votes and started my first All-star game in San Francisco.''
June 15, 2011 - 9:09 AM
There have been plenty of comparisons between this year's crazy Bruins-Canucks Stanley Cup final and the 1960 World Series won by the Pirates over the Yankees on the Bill Mazeroski home run. Gene Collier has an excellent look at the similarities in today's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
The Yankees lost the series despite outscoring Pittsburgh, 55-27, and winning games by scores of 16-3, 10-0 and 12-0. The Pirates' four wins saw two one-run games (including the 10-9 Game Seven clincher courtesy of Mazeroski), as well a game won by two runs and another won by three.
The Stanley Cup, of course, is heading to Game Seven tonight even though Boston has outscored Vancouver, 19-8. Eight goals in six games and the Canucks are still alive? Amazing.
Unlike that World Series, where one of the Yankees' blowouts was in Pittsburgh, this one has stayed completely along home lines. The Bruins have an incredible 17-3 edge in TD Garden with wins by scores of 8-1, 4-0 and 5-2. The Canucks, meanwhile, have won at home, 1-0, 3-2 (in overtime) and 1-0.
(I went with Vancouver in seven before this one ever started and don't feel the need to change now. But it's hard to believe a goalie can go through more ups and downs in the playoffs as Roberto Luongo has and still win a Stanley Cup so we'll see).
When I was in the Steel City over the weekend, I paid a visit to the University of Pittsburgh and the site of old Forbes Field, where Mazeroski's home run was hit.
A portion of ivy-covered brick outfield walls, complete with ivy and distance markings remains standing at its spot (click on pic for a bigger view). In addition, home plate from the ballpark's last game in 1970 is kept under glass at its location on the floor inside an adjacent classroom building. Quite cool.
May 26, 2011 - 5:01 PM
Bisons manager Tim Teufel has got his instructions for tonight from Mets manager Terry Collins: get outfielder Angel Pagan as many at-bats as possible.
That means Pagan will hit leadoff as the Herd opens a four-game set with the Gwinnett Braves at Coca-Cola Field.
Pagan won’t be long for Buffalo; he’s expected to rejoin the Mets prior to their game Friday against Philadelphia.
He will start in center field on his brief one-game rehabilitation assignment as he comes back from a strained left oblique that landed him on the disabled list April 22.
“When they come down here [on rehab], we just get them ready,” Teufel said this afternoon. “In this case with Pagan, it’s a pretty easy thing to do. Stick him in the top of the lineup and let him do his thing.
“That came from TC [Collins]. He said, ‘hey just stick him in the leadoff spot, get him some at-bats and get him ready to come up here.’ ”
Pagan has played six games with the Single-A St. Lucie Mets of the Florida State League as part of his rehab. With St. Lucie, he hit .261 (8-23) with a double, home run and two RBIs.
This will be the second time in his career that Pagan has rehabbed with the Bisons. The outfielder joined the Herd for a three-game stint, May 12-16, 2009, while recovering from offseason elbow surgery. He hit .286 (4-14) with two triples, two RBIs and two runs scored in those three games. In his Bisons debut on May 12, he hit a two-run, walk-off triple in the bottom of the 11th inning of a 4-3 win over Gwinnett.
“He said he’s feeling really good,” Teuefel said of Pagan, who will not speak with the media until after the game. “He wants to be more aggressive with the fastball tonight. He’s able to hit breaking balls pretty good, he said, down in St. Lucie. Tonight is about seeing a little bit tougher competition, a little bit better ball movement. … This is a little bit closer to the big leagues than the Florida State League, so this is a good tune-up.”
The Bisons’ starting lineup looks like this:
Luis Figueroa, SS
Valentino Pascucci, 1B
Bubba Bell, RF
Michael Fisher, 3B
Jason Botts, LF
Luis Hernandez, 2B
Mike Nickeas, C
D.J. Carrasco, P
We’ll update each of Pagan’s at-bats tonight on the blog, as well as any weather information, so check back closer to game time.
May 17, 2011 - 6:26 PM
Harmon Killebrew's death Tuesday morning from esophageal cancer was unexpected only in the speed it took place after the Hall of Fame Twins slugger's announcement on Friday that he was entering into hospice care for his final days. Manager Ron Gardenhire, in fact, said he had hoped to visit Killebrew in Phoenix this weekend while the Twins were in town for an interleague series.
The Minneapolis Star-Tribune has put together the definitive obit on the life of Killebrew, which is definitely worth the read.
For video, audio and more stories, MLB.com has a full package on Killebrew's life.
The Twins' players had previously announced they would be wearing their cream-colored retro jerseys at home the rest of the season in honor of Killebrew. Nice touch.
May 15, 2011 - 10:31 AM
Bottom line first: Jorge Posada asked out Saturday night. Of a Yankees-Red Sox game on national television, no less. And don't believe the pathetic attempt by his wife on Twitter to claim an injury was involved.
Pretty odd coincidence this all comes late Saturday night when my Sunday Inside Baseball column was on Yankees mega catching prospect Jesus Montero. All this talk they have to trade him for pitching but how about using Montero as your catcher?
The New York media, obviously, was unleashed on the Posada story all night and here's some of their work.
---Bergen Record columnist Bob Klapisch said Posada's simmering temper finally bubbled over in what will be remembered as the lowest point of his career.
---Post columnist Joel Sherman says this is another example of how tough it is for Yankee icons to ride into the sunset peacefully and that the catcher set off a five-alarm Bronx Zoo flashback.
---In the Daily News, Bill Madden wonders if Posada forgot Brian Cashman was the guy who put emotion aside in ending the Yankee careers of Bernie Williams and Joe Torre and had the acrimonious contract talks with Derek Jeter.
---ESPNNY's Wally Matthews says the Posada affair is a warning sign on what's to come as the Yankees' stars all age deep into their deals. Andrew Marchand goes one step further and says Posada had a sittin like Pippen moment that is now forever a part of his legacy.
---In the Boston Globe, Dan Shaughnessy says the two AL East rivals have suddenly reversed course this month.
This won't go away for some time of course and tonight's game is on ESPN. Stay tuned.
May 14, 2011 - 3:35 PM
Or in the case of Saturday afternoon at Progressive Field, it comes down like cats, dogs, sea lions, otters and elephants (click pic at left for a bigger view from the press box). We were in the bottom of the first with no score, two Indians on base on Friday night hero Travis Hafner at the plate when the skies opened and never stopped. It was a biblical flood that inundated center field.
They finally banged this one after a wait of about two hours but not before we saw Charlie Brown and Baseball Bugs, another all-time classic, on the jumbotron. Very nice touch.
Bugs Bunny - Baseball bugs
I'll probably make it home in time to see most of Yankees-Red Sox and all of Bruins-Lightning. Here's a cheap plug alert: Sometime in the next couple of weeks, be on the lookout for a big takeout on the resurgence of the Tribe and the hope this group is bringing to Cleveland in the post-LeBron era
May 14, 2011 - 9:00 AM
CLEVELAND -- There's plenty of talk here about empty seats but I don't know what all the fuss is about. I walked into Progressive Field Friday night and it seemed a lot like, oh, 1995 or 1997 or 2007. There wasn't a sellout but there were 33,000+ in the house -- and the walkup crowd was more than 8,500.
And the Indians won again in walkoff fashion, stunning Eric Wedge's Mariners, 5-4, on a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth from Travis Hafner. The place erupted when the ball cleared the center-field fence and so did Hafner's teammates (right). I've been here for many of these kinds of games over the years but this one pushes near the top of the list. Click here to watch the dramatic video.
"We're having a blast," Hafner said. "Winning is obviously a big part of that when you have good chemistry on a team. It makes coming to the park a lot of fun again."
These guys are for real and the AL Central is a weak, weak division. The Tigers might be their only challenger. One more starting pitcher at the trade deadline and the Tribe might turn this into a runaway.
Photo: Associated Press
May 13, 2011 - 2:30 PM
CLEVELAND -- We've made it three hours to the west for tonight's Indians-Mariners game at Progressive Field in what will be ex-Indians and Bisons manager Eric Wedge's first game here since he was fired following the 2009 season. Keep it here for some updates later today on Wedge's pregame chat with the media, set for 5:25 p.m., and perhaps an update on Grady Sizemore's latest knee injury.
It's a busy Friday around the majors as well. Among the highlights:
---The Yankees and Red Sox meet for the first time this year as they open a three-game set in the Bronx. Tonight's game at is 7 on YES and features a pitching matchup of Bartolo Colon and Clay Buchholz. Lots of questions around both teams, with the Yankees coming off Thursday's 11-5 whipping at the hands of the Royals and the Red Sox still reeling below .500
---Jered Weaver goes for his seventh win as the Angels play the Rangers in Texas.
May 13, 2011 - 11:48 AM
Sad news coming this morning out of Minnesota: Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew says he has exhausted all of his treatment options for esophageal cancer and will be entering hospice care to spend the final days with his wife, Nita, by his side.
In a statement Killebrew issued today through the team, Killebrew said, "I have spent the past decade of my life promoting hospice care and educating people on its benefits. I am very comfortable taking this next step and experiencing the compassionate care that hospice provides."
Killebrew, who was diagnosed in December, had a statue of his famous swing unveiled outside Target Field last year. He's 11th on the all-time home run list with 573.
May 12, 2011 - 1:21 PM
---The Bisons announced that infielder Michael Fisher and pitcher Dylan Owen were promoted to the team. Fisher was with Double-A Binghamton while Owen was with Single-A Brooklyn. Also, Bisons outfielder Fernando Martinez was sent up to the Mets and pitcher Tobi Stoner has been taken off the Bisons disabled list and transferred to Single-A St. Lucie.
May 6, 2011 - 12:25 PM
If you're got MLB Extra Innings or the MLB.TV packages, tonight's Rockies-Giants game from AT&T Park in San Francisco looks like a good one. And not just because of the interesting pitching matchup between shockingly winless Ubaldo Jimenez and Matt Cain.
The Giants are throwing a big party for legendary center fielder Willie Mays, who somehow turns 80 today. Wasn't he just patrolling the outfield?
MLB.com has put together a huge birthday package on Mays filled with videos, and retrospective columns. It's definitely worth spending a few minutes checking it out.
In today's San Francisco Chronicle, Mays tells columnist John Shea," I had a good year because the kids had a good year." He's referring, of course, to the 2010 Giants and their run to a World Series title I covered last fall in Texas.
May 5, 2011 - 9:29 AM
Don't look for any info on Wednesday night's Red Sox-Angels game in our paper or any other paper on the East Coast for that matter. It took five hours to play and the Angels won it in 13 innings, 5-3 -- after enduring a 2-hour, 35-minute rain delay in the fifth inning. Bobby Abreu's game-winning single off Dice-K, who was pressed into relief, came at 2:36 a.m. and the last out was at 2:45 to finally wrap up the Angels' first win in seven tries against the Sox this season.
There were plenty more bizarre entries in this one. The Angels had a combined no-hitter going until Jed Lowrie's single in the seventh, which came just before midnight. Boston tied it with two runs in the bottom of the ninth, and Jacoby Ellsbury's down-to-his-last-strike RBI single forced extra innings.
In the 12th, Kevin Youkilis just missed a walkoff home run over the Green Monster. The ball hit the top of the wall and the Angels threw out Marco Scutaro at home. Bobby Jenks, who's been brutal all year, came up with a tight arm and Dice-K had to make his first relief outing in the 13th.
"When I showed up today, I didn't think I'd be talking to you guys at 3 in the morning," Boston manager Terry Francona told reporters afterward.
I feel for my media brethren in the press box. A long night, all the leads to their stories torn up by the Boston rally in the ninth, and then there's this point: The teams have a day game today at 1:30. The clubhouses open at 10 a.m.
April 12, 2011 - 8:25 AM
We're 10 games into the season for plenty of teams, or others will hit game 10 tonight. It's a small sample for sure but here are some early impressions:
Good as expected: The Rangers, Phillies and Reds look poised to play deep into October just as lots of people predicted they would.
Terrible as expected: The Rays and Astros are 2-8. Until exploding for 16 runs Monday in Boston, the Rays were looking like one of the worst offensive teams in history.
Yankees: The pitching is a little uneven and Derek Jeter is again struggling. A-Rod and Mark Teixeira look good. They'll be fine.
Mets: Old friend Terry Collins will have to really work to keep his spirits up with this bunch. Some days there will be no hitting, some days there will be no pitching and some days, like Monday's 7-6 loss to the Rockies, the bullpen won't get the job done. Long year ahead.
Red Sox: They sure miss ex-pitching coach John Farrell, now the manager in Toronto. Their staff sure misses Jason Varitek behind the plate every night too. What a mess. Dice-K got lit up by the Rays Monday and the Fenway natives are very restless. Dice-K has a 12.86 ERA and the Boston starters are at 7.26.
Indians: They were down 14-0 in the fifth inning of the season opener against the White Sox and it looked like a 100-loss disaster was certainly in the making. But they've won eight straight, are 8-2 and are getting fabulous starting pitching, with eight shutout innings from Mitch Talbot last night in Anaheim being the latest entry. Can it last?
Blue Jays: They had looked solid at the plate and on the mound and had a 7-0 lead over the Mariners Monday night after knocking Felix Hernandez from the mound. Then the bullpen collapsed and Seattle rallied for a shocking 8-7 victory. Let's see how they react to that one.
Other surprises: The Orioles have the pitching to take over from the Rays as the AL East team to challenge the Yankees and Red Sox. The Pirates are clearly better under Clint Hurdle, with young players like Jose Tabata and Andrew McCutcheon really starting to make an impact. The Royals are better too even without Zack Greinke but I still don't believe.
April 1, 2011 - 9:50 AM
The season openers continue Friday with a 3:05 first pitch in sold-out Progressive Field for the Indians and White Sox and a 7:05 first pitch in the sold-out Rogers Centre for the Blue Jays and Twins and the managerial debut of ex-Bison John Farrell.
Cleveland.com will be hosting a live chat during the Indians' game. They also have a live Webcam into the Winking Lizard, a great pub on Huron Street by the ballpark that this corner has often frequented over the years. An odd little Opening Day addition (place opened at 9 a.m.!)
The Mets, meanwhile, open the Terry Collins era tonight at Florida (7 p.m. on SNY). The Daily News' Mets section has all kinds of stories on the Amazins' season, both Madoff and non-Madoff variety. I like Andy Martino's look at how Collins and GM Sandy Alderson have quite a mess to fix. In terms of early impact on the Bisons is the fact that Jason Bay's trip to the DL means Lucas Duda has made the big club and won't take his big bat to Buffalo to start the year.
March 31, 2011 - 6:43 PM
I'm not a big fan of ESPN's all-encompassing and self-promoting approach in a lot of areas. But in the credit-where-credit is due department, I would say any fans of the Yankees or Mets should follow the teams' daily blogs on ESPNNY.com.
As for Thursday's Yankees opener in the Bronx, Andrew Marchand & Co. have all kinds of angles at this link from before, during and after the 6-3 win over the Tigers. Jeter stuck on 74 hits shy of 3,000, Jorge Posada's move to DH, the freezing fans, Mike Mussina's first pitch, Jeter and A.J. Burnett turning the page on tough 2010s. Great stuff.
Meanwhile, good friend of the blog Adam Rubin & Co. have every angle of the Mets covered and lots of them, of course, concern the Bisons. It will be even more interesting to follow the coverage this year in the wake of Terry Collins' promotion to manager. The big news from Thursday is that starter Pat Misch and infielder Luis Hernandez have both accepted assignments to the Bisons after clearing waivers. Two solid additions for the Herd.
Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has covered the Buffalo Bisons since 1992 and Major League Baseball since 1995. A member of the Baseball Writers Association of America, Harrington has reported on 15 World Series -- including every pitch of the Fall Classic this century -- and all three of the Bisons' championship runs in their modern era. He is a connoisseur of the famous Stadium Mustard at Cleveland's Progressive Field.
Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered the Bisons for The Buffalo News since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.