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Nick Canepa once again demands that the Padres release Yasmani Grandal

Feb 12, 2013, 8:25 AM EDT

Yasmani Grandal AP AP

Back in November Nick Canepa of the San Diego Union Tribune wrote what may have been the worst baseball column I read all year (and I wasn’t the only one to think so).

In it he demanded that the Padres release catcher Yasmani Grandal due to his positive PED test. The idea is stupid enough. One does not simply cut ties with a 24 year-old catcher who is under team control for five more years and who has shown immense promise. But it was Canepa’s overwrought, dramatic prose that really set his column apart.

According to Canepa, Grandal committed “an incredibly stupid and thoughtless act.” He “tore the club’s head off.” He “burned this franchise, his teammates and its fans.” He called the act “unforgivable,” and made a weird cryptic comment about how there is no place in a decent world for sports. It was really out of sight.

Three passing of three months has not brought Canepa back to Earth, it seems. Via the Avenging Jack Murphy blog, we learn that Canepa has struck again. After noting the questions with the Padres’ pitching staff, Canepa fights the real enemy:

But doing most of the damage is Yasmani Grandal, who after coming on strong at the end of the year seemed set to be the team’s starting catcher for years. But he got himself busted for taking PEDs and will miss the first 50 games of the season, and that’s if the organization takes him back at all, which it shouldn’t because he absolutely screwed this team …

… How long had he been on the juice? Are there any guarantees he’s going to be the same player if he comes back? There seems to be a feeling within the organization that Grandal hasn’t come clean on this drug thing, especially now that his name allegedly has surfaced in the Miami anti-aging clinic scandal. The justice department probably is going to get involved now. Do the Padres want to be a part of this?

He acts as if Grandal was the first person to ever test positive for PEDs and that keeping Grandal somehow puts the Padres at some great risk. He acts as if there is no downside to the Padres releasing one of the more talented young players in the game. I refuse to believe that Canepa is stupid. I refuse to believe that he does not know that teams like the Padres can’t simply ship talent off and that Grandal is likely to have a good major league career ahead of him. I refuse to believe it, not because I know that much about Canepa, but because no person on planet Earth could possess so much weapons-grade stupidity without being sanctioned by the U.N. Security Council.

No, Canepa is not stupid. He’s grandstanding and hand-wringing and moralizing. And that’s worse than stupidity, because that’s willful.

  1. skids003 - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:31 AM

    Writers like him give them all a bad name.

    • Old Gator - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:35 AM

      Writers like him give bullshit a bad name.

      (With apologies to John Searle.)

      • thekcubrats - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:47 AM

        (With further apologies to Foucault, whom Searle was quoting.)

      • Old Gator - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:56 AM

        Oh for…back then, everybody was quoting Sweet Foucault. And what difference does it make, anyway? The author was dead, wasn’t he?

        (With even further apologies due to the juxtaposition-correcting replication – not from me, but from the discourse itself.)

      • number42is1 - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:25 AM

        with further apologies to all the HBT commenters that had to read through these comments.

  2. albertmn - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    There has to be more to this on Canepa’s end. Did Grandal snub him for an interview, or tell him what he really thought of sportswriters?

  3. Chris Fiorentino - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Canepa is making the mistake a lot of journalists make no matter which side of whatever argument you are on. He is making it sound so easy to do something without thinking about the people involved. If the Padres got rid of Grandal, they would get killed by a lot of their fanbase. But Canepa doesn’t have to worry about that because he isn’t the GM. It’s so easy for journalists to say “Get rid of this guy” or “Trade for that guy” or even better, I love the journalists(Florio) who grandstand on things like changing the name “Redskins”, and tell RG3 that it is his “duty” to speak out against it, even though more than half the fanbase would be against it.

    It’s so easy for journalists to write what OTHERS should do without putting themselves in their position first.

    • singingfriar - Feb 12, 2013 at 12:52 PM

      Don’t mistake Canepa for a journalist.

  4. Charles Gates - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:53 AM

    Canepa should get a trophy for trying though, because think about the kids– the one’s that suck but still show up for practice and try and fail hard.

  5. randygnyc - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    I guess we know how Canepa will vote on bonds and Clemens. Fortunately, this isn’t an aberration, rather the majority.

  6. Old Gator - Feb 12, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    Oh for…back then, everybody was quoting Sweet Foucault. And what difference does it make, anyway? The author was dead, wasn’t he?

  7. sdelmonte - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:22 AM

    Still waiting for the day when a sportswriter says “everything about this sport is dirty, and I quit!”

    • number42is1 - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:42 AM

      Didn’t the dude with the big white hat just do that yesterday?

  8. jeffbbf - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    “No, Canepa is not stupid. He’s grandstanding and hand-wringing and moralizing. And that’s worse than stupidity, because that’s willful.”

    Craig = pot
    Mr. Canepa = kettle
    Craig to Mr. Canepa: “You are black, sir”

  9. bharr170 - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:29 AM

    I’m really starting to wonder if Jocketty knew this guy was Juiced before sending him over to the Padres for Latos.

    • paperlions - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:24 AM

      Actually, he traded him because he was their second best catching prospect as pretty much everyone expected Mesaroco to be a better catcher than Grandal….so he was dealing from a position of depth.

      I doubt he had any idea of Grandal’s usage, how would he? MiLB players are tested and Grandal didn’t fail a test before.

    • mazblast - Feb 13, 2013 at 12:06 AM

      Sure, Jocketty knows everything. That’s why Mesoraco has turned into such a stud offensive catcher.

  10. dlf9 - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:39 AM

    Read the difference between Caepa’s coverage of Shawne Merriman, the former Charger LB suspended for PED use, and his treatment of baseball players linked above. For example, in this http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2010/aug/02/if-merrimans-serious-about-game-he-belongs-out-at/ the writer criticizes Merriman for holding out for a new contract but writes, “[His declining production] probably was due to injuries, although some say it’s because he no longer is on the juice, a notion I dismiss.”

    • paperlions - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:27 AM

      You know, the difference in attitude toward PEDs between MLB writers and NFL writers is fairly stark….that fact that those same differences manifest within a single writer is 12 kinds of hysterical. It is hard to kill the credibility of one’s own opinions any more thoroughly than Canepa has done.

    • ptfu - Feb 12, 2013 at 11:32 AM

      Heck, read the difference between Canepa today and Canepa 8-10 years ago, writing about Ken Caminiti and steroids (and cocaine and drinking). Caminiti was huge in San Diego, much bigger than Grandal is now. There’s some over-the-top grandstanding, but there’s also some thoughtful reflection.

      http://www.utsandiego.com/sports/canepa/20020529-9999_z1s29kencam.html

      http://www.utsandiego.com/sports/canepa/20041012-9999-1s12canepa.html

      http://www.utsandiego.com/sports/canepa/20050302-9999-1s2canepa.html

      Canepa hasn’t aged well.

  11. joshfrancis50 - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:54 AM

    This is an alias for Jason Whitlock, right?

    • geoknows - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:49 AM

      This would hardly be Whitlock’s response.

  12. shaggylocks - Feb 12, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Hey, I got a good idea! Let’s let the baseball writers vote on who gets into the Hall of Fame!

  13. icanspeel - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:19 AM

    Born and raised in San Diego and have read the UT for many years.. I always wondered how Nick Canepa keeps his job. He rarely has a good article and normally just spews BS over and over.

    • Old Gator - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:33 AM

      Every newspaper has columnists like that. Who are they shtupping, you wonder. The Macondo Feeshwrapper has its share – but oddly enough, our spawrtsrighters aren’t too bad (until they become spawrts torque raydeeo hosts, like Dan LeBatard, at which point they become unbearable). Then again, I think there must be some conventional wisdom that readers assimilating a sports column over breakfast don’t really want plangence, insight or intelligence – it spoils the taste of their coffee.

    • paperlions - Feb 12, 2013 at 12:12 PM

      Maybe they keep him around to make everyone else look better.

  14. unclemosesgreen - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:20 AM

    Another Nick fit!

    Or howzabout – another Canep-tion fit?

  15. flushdownmikebrown - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    The reds trade just looks better and better though………………..

  16. jrobitaille23 - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:42 AM

    PED talk—check
    Craig taking a shot at anyone against PED use—-check

  17. badassleroybrown - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    This just in Canepa is upset because his wife left him for a guy who uses PED’s……His performance was better than Canepa due to the use of PED’s.

  18. lostsok - Feb 12, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    I can name 29 teams that feel strongly they should release Grandal. San Diego isn’t one of them.

  19. 4cornersfan - Feb 12, 2013 at 4:51 PM

    Craig, I didn’t follow the link to his articles so I can’t say whether or not they are willfully stupid, but I would point out that in most jobs that require a drug test if you test positive you don’t get suspended 50 days, you get fired no matter how good you are at your job.

  20. mazblast - Feb 13, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    “I refuse to believe that Canepa is stupid. I refuse to believe that he does not know that teams like the Padres can’t simply ship talent off and that Grandal is likely to have a good major league career ahead of him. I refuse to believe it, not because I know that much about Canepa, but because no person on planet Earth could possess so much weapons-grade stupidity without being sanctioned by the U.N. Security Council.”

    C’mon, Craig, he’s a sportswriter, and a pretty bad one at that, even in his “prime”. I believe he IS that stupid. What I find hard to believe is how many people will actually agree with hacks like this clown.

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