Jan 31, 2013, 11:03 AM EST
More for the “Oh, won’t that nasty old A-Rod just go away, please” file. This from the Daily News. Let’s do this in call and response form:
Alex Rodriguez is unlikely to ever wear the pinstripes again, sources familiar with the Yankees’ situation with their troubled third baseman told the Daily News …
Unless someone from the Yankees says “we’re going to release A-Rod” there is no support for this whatsoever.
“I don’t know why he would want to go through the pain of rehabbing and trying to play up to the caliber of player he was, and come back to a game where nobody wants him,” said a baseball official.
I can think of 114 million reasons. Plus the fact that his entire identity is tied up in being a professional athlete and most professional athletes don’t make sober assessments about when their careers are over. They have their careers forcibly taken from them, often hanging on too long and requiring that teams release them.
Even before the latest steroid allegations surfaced, Yankee officials had already privately begun preparing for the likelihood that Rodriguez would never finish out the mega-deal he signed in 2007.
Yet publicly they all said that his rehab would be six months and that, while it could be longer, it was unlikely. And his doctor said that his hip was less damaged than anticipated. Indeed, no one said A-Rod was finished in New York until about ten minutes after the Miami New Times story broke the other day.
Meanwhile, the Rodriguez scenarios include: (1) A-Rod being forced to retire because of the injury, enabling the Yankees to collect 85% of the insurance on the contract, which would leave him with a paid-up deal that comes off the Yankee books and subsequently lessens their luxury-tax burden.
See yesterday’s commentary about the likelihood of the Yankees being able to collect on an insurance claim for A-Rod. In any event, even if his hip ended his ability to play baseball — which no one other than columnists have suggested — he would not retire. He’d sit on the DL for five years, just like Albert Belle did, collecting his money. Also: an insurance scenario would not give the Yankees luxury tax relief.
(2) Rodriguez completes the rehab but continues to play in a diminished role, is unhappy with his level of play and decides to voluntarily retire. In that case, the Yankees would engage him in settlement talks.
Again, there is zero incentive for A-Rod to voluntarily retire. If the Yankees don’t want him, they can cut him and he can go play elsewhere while still collecting all the money he’s owed. If no other team signs him, he gets $114 million from the Yankees for sitting on the beach and doing nothing. There is no reason in the world why he should or would engage the Yankees in “settlement talks.” Unless the writers of this column can come up with one, their suggestion is nonsense.
If Rodriguez is found to have been involved, he could face a 50-game suspension by MLB, or worse: If he was not truthful when baseball officials interviewed him several times over the past years about his involvement with steroids and human growth hormone, commissioner Bud Selig would have the power under the collectively bargained drug agreement to increase the suspension.
The commissioner’s power comes from a paragraph in the joint drug agreement that says anything not covered under the listed penalties can be covered by the discretion of the commissioner.
I have read the Joint Drug Agreement up and down, backwards and forwards, and I cannot find a clause that says this. If I missed it, someone point it out to me. If there is something in there to this effect, someone is going to have to tell me how A-Rod’s alleged acts — taking banned PEDs — is “not covered under the listed penalties.” Like I said earlier today, A-Rod is a player like any other. Just because he makes a lot of money and is hated does not make him eligible for greater discipline than anyone else.
All of this is wishcasting by Yankees sources. Or, more likely, Yankees sources attempting to communicate to A-Rod through the media, telling him that he is unwelcome and hoping he decides to do the highly irrational thing of walking away from $114 million.
Unless and until someone from the Yankees, anonymously or otherwise, suggests that they are going to simply release A-Rod outright, there is every reason to think that he will play for them again. He will do his rehab and get himself in a position to play if he is able, if for no other reason, than to force the Yankees to play him or release him. In no event does it make any sense whatsoever for him to retire or to enter into negotiations with the Yankees for a buyout.
We get it, Yankees. You don’t want to pay A-Rod the silly contract you gave him. But no matter how much you beef about it now, you’re gonna end up paying the guy.
Dec 21, 2013, 8:58 AM EST
Grant Balfour‘s contract with the Orioles was nixed over a disputed issue with his shoulder, but that messy situation isn’t scaring off one of his former teams. According to Jim Bowden of ESPN.com and MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM, the Rays “are in” on the All-Star closer. The Rays are somewhat of a logical…
Dec 20, 2013, 11:01 PM EST
Brian Kenny is not an official Baseball Hall of Fame voter. If he did have a vote, however, it’d go a little something like this: My HOF ballot: Maddux, Thomas, Raines, Biggio, Schilling, Martinez, McGriff, Glavine, Mussina, Trammell. @CHConfidential — Brian Kenny (@MrBrianKenny) December 20, 2013 In the interest of full disclosure: I do not…
Dec 20, 2013, 9:45 PM EST
The quickly souring four-year $50 million deal the Phillies gave Jonathan Papelbon two years ago, and the Orioles’ recent fiasco with Grant Balfour may make the two teams unexpected trade partners. MASN’s Roch Kubatko is reporting that the Phillies and Orioles have discussed a trade involving closer Jonathan Papelbon. Kubatko adds that the Phillies would have…
Dec 20, 2013, 8:50 PM EST
Grant Balfour isn’t going to let this issue go silently into the night. After the Orioles backed out of a two-year, $15 million contract with Balfour, the right-hander said he is considering filing a grievance. He continued to defend himself, saying that he has multiple doctors on his side vouching for his health. He also…
Dec 20, 2013, 8:10 PM EST
If their latest action is any indication, the Indians’ decision to have catcher Carlos Santana work out at third base wasn’t just made on a whim. As Paul Hoynes of The Plain Dealer reports, the Indians have sent infield coach Mike Sarbaugh down to the Dominican Republic to help Santana as he plays in winter…
Dec 20, 2013, 7:25 PM EST
The Phillie Phanatic is good for a laugh a majority of the time, whether he’s cavorting around Citizens Bank Park in his ATV, posing for pictures with fans in the stands, or rifling individually-wrapped hot dogs into the 400-level. The Phanatic, who hails from the Galapagos Islands (of Charles Darwinian fame), will be entering his…
Dec 20, 2013, 6:35 PM EST
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports is reporting that free agent reliever Grant Balfour is considering filing a grievance over the Orioles’ recent decision to back out of a two-year, $15 million contract. Balfour contends he is as healthy as ever, and multiple doctors agree with him. It is very hard to see what the Orioles…
Dec 20, 2013, 6:00 PM EST
[Edit: The title originally included the word &concussion& rather than &collision&, which made Kapler look bad for something he didn't say. It was an unfortunate malapropism on my part. I apologize for the mistake.] Former Major Leaguer Gabe Kapler penned a thoughtful piece about the home plate collision issue over at FOX Sports. It’s nice…
Dec 20, 2013, 5:20 PM EST
Earlier today the Orioles backed out of two-year, $15 million deal with closer Grant Balfour, citing concerns about Balfour’s shoulder. Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle spoke with Balfour today, and he says he’s 100%: Balfour tells me his MRIs, incl R shoulder, are the exact same as they were three years ago. “I’m…
Dec 20, 2013, 4:31 PM EST
Carlos Beltran had his introductory news conference with the Yankees today and said all the things a guy who just signed with the Yankees is expected to say. It’s a great organization, it was his dream to play in pinstripes, etc. etc. But of course, since Beltran spent so much time with the Mets, he…
Dec 20, 2013, 4:09 PM EST
It’s the Friday before Christmas so all of you are having your office Christmas parites. I used to have office Christmas parties. We’d have cocktails and chase women around desks and photocopy our rear ends and everything. Hi, I’m Craig, and I haven’t worked in an office since 1968! Anyway, what I’m saying is, it’s…
Dec 20, 2013, 3:20 PM EST
It has been flatlining since yesterday, but after heroic efforts were undertaken, Roch Kubatko calls it: #orioles wont complete deal with balfour. it’s off — Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) December 20, 2013 Duquette: “The Orioles are moving on from this situation.” — Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) December 20, 2013 The signing was supposed to be announced…
Dec 20, 2013, 2:30 PM EST
Alex Speier of WEEI reports that Kevin Youkilis has reached an agreement to play for the Rakuten Golden Eagles in Japan in 2014. Youkilis’ 2013 season was a lost one. He signed a $12 million deal with the Yankees, but he was racked with injuries, playing in only 28 games and hitting a meager .219/.305/.343 with two…
Dec 20, 2013, 2:14 PM EST
MLB announced that Orioles left-hander Troy Patton has been suspended 25 games following a positive test for amphetamine use. Patton has done nice work out of Baltimore’s bullpen during the past three seasons, throwing a combined 142 innings with a 3.05 ERA and 113/33 K/BB ratio in a middle relief role. He was previously arrested…
Dec 20, 2013, 1:00 PM EST
Mark Grace, who went from the Diamondbacks’ broadcast booth to a prison cell due to multiple drunk driving convictions has a job in baseball once again. The Hillsboro Hops of the single-A Northwest League have announced that Grace will be their hitting instructor for 2014. The Hops are affiliated with the Diamondbacks, a team which…
Dec 20, 2013, 12:52 PM EST
Grant Balfour‘s two-year, $15 million deal with the Orioles is in jeopardy because the team didn’t like what it saw during his pre-signing physical exam and Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that they’re turning their attention to Fernando Rodney. Any pursuit of Rodney would only happen if Balfour’s deal is wiped away, but…
Dec 20, 2013, 12:30 PM EST
Despite yesterday’s reports that the Rakuten Golden Eagles have decided not to post Masahiro Tanaka, the team insists that it is still having internal discussions on the matter and has not made a decision one way or another. There is no timetable for decision, and players can be posted up until February 1. While it’s…
Dec 20, 2013, 11:33 AM EST
Sadly, not a variety show: RHP Todd Coffey has tentative showcase scheduled for 1/17 as he comes off Tommy John surgery. — Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) December 20, 2013 It sounds so festive. I’m picturing this: Mixed with this: If they do that, I’d advocate for signing Coffey to a three-year, $39 million deal.
Dec 20, 2013, 11:03 AM EST
The idea behind tax credits and other tax incentives is to convince businesses to invest in the jurisdiction over which the taxing authority holds sway. When the business is already committed to investing in the area and there is no danger of losing said investment to another jurisdiction, there is little reason to grant that…
Dec 20, 2013, 10:46 AM EST
Minnesota wasted little time finding a new veteran catcher, adding free agent Kurt Suzuki one day after trading Ryan Doumit to Atlanta. Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Suzuki and the Twins have agreed to a one-year deal and the 30-year-old will compete with rookie Josmil Pinto for playing time behind the…
- Grant Balfour may file a grievance over Orioles’ decision to back out of contract 20
- Former Major Leaguer Gabe Kapler wants collisions to remain part of the game 31
- Carlos Beltran introduced by the Yankees, takes a shot at the Mets 35
- The Grant Balfour-Orioles deal is dead 25
- Kevin Youkilis is going to play in Japan 31
- Hall of Fame voting expert: Greg Maddux makes it. No one else does. (105)
- I don’t know what the best baseball song is, but it ain’t John freakin’ Fogerty (101)
- Happy Birthday, Ty Cobb! (89)
- ‘Tis the season for people acting incredibly dumb (74)
- The Yankees agree to a one-year, $2 million deal with Brian Roberts (74)