Sep 3, 2009, 3:20 PM EST
* Not only can new Red Sox pinch-runner Joey Gathright jump over parked cars, he probably could have snapped Julian Tavarez’s neck like a twig a few years ago and instead restrained himself.
* Mariano Rivera could be unavailable for a few games because of a strained groin, which has apparently bothered him since mid-August. Rivera, of course, hasn’t allowed a run since suffering the injury.
* On the other hand, Brian Bannister may have to shut things down for the season after trying to pitch through shoulder fatigue for the past six weeks. Bannister was once 7-7 with a 3.59 ERA, but has gone 0-5 while allowing 34 runs in 31 innings since.
* Andy Marte is finally showing some signs of what once made him one of the top prospects in baseball, hitting .264/.320/.448 in 25 games with the Indians. That may not look like much, but prior to last month he’d hit just .211/.265/.337 through 174 games as a major leaguer.
* Garrett Jones’ homer yesterday was the 10,000th in Pirates history.
* If the Jon Garland trade doesn’t work out for them, the Dodgers still have a good-looking option for their fifth starter.
- Merry Christmas from HBT! 56
- THE YEAR IN REVIEW: HBT’s most commented-upon stories of the year 85
- The Yankees are treating Alex Rodriguez differently than they treated Derek Jeter. So what? 37
- Braves sign setup man Jason Grilli to two-year contract 14
- My Imaginary Hall of Fame Ballot 120
- Phil Hughes signs a three-year extension with the Twins 27
- The Padres have talked to the Phillies about Cole Hamels 23
- Why is John Smoltz a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame? 63
- Bud Selig will get a $6 million a year pension. Which is obscene. (145)
- My Imaginary Hall of Fame Ballot (120)
- Today’s specious anti-Mike Piazza-for-the-Hall-Fame argument (96)
- Phillies GM told Ryan Howard they’d be better off “not with him but without him” (85)
- THE YEAR IN REVIEW: HBT’s most commented-upon stories of the year (85)