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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Red Sox interested in Marlon Byrd

ESPN's Buster Olney believes that the Red Sox and Nationals could have interest in trading for Marlon Byrd.

The Cubs are in a rebuilding mode, and Byrd is entering the final year of a three-year contract that will guarantee him $6.5 million this season. Olney mentions that Byrd could be used as one piece of the Theo Epstein compensation with the Red Sox, but that is not considered likely to happen. Coming off a disappointing season, he would satisfy a short-term need for the Nationals  stats

Sox sign Hill to Minor League deal

Rich Hill's minor league contract has a prorated salary of $725,000 in the majors.

Hill was non-tendered earlier this month, but Boston decided to bring him back even though he underwent Tommy John surgery in June. He is not expected to be available until the middle of the 2012 season, or later.   stats

Friday, December 30, 2011

Buckner returns to Cubs organization

CHICAGO -- Bill Buckner is back with the Cubs.

Buckner, 62, was officially named the Class A Boise hitting coach on Friday. He returned to coaching last season as the manager of the Brockton Rox, and led the team to a 51-42 record in the independent CanAm League.

Buckner replaces Desi Wilson, who was named the hitting coach for the Cubs' Class A Daytona team.

Buckner rejoins the Cubs for the first time since playing for the big league team from 1977 to 1984. He won the 1980 National League batting crown and earned a spot in the 1981 All-Star Game. A 22-year veteran, he was the White Sox hitting coach in 1996 and 1997, and also was a hitting coach in the Blue Jays' Minor League system.

Buckner played for the Dodgers, Cubs, Red Sox, Angels and Royals, hitting .289 with 174 career home runs and 1,208 RBIs. He played in two World Series: 1974, with the Dodgers, and 1986, with the Red Sox.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Tony LaRussa calls it quits

ST. LOUIS -- Tony La Russa retired as manager of the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday, three days after winning a dramatic, seven-game World Series against the Texas Rangers.
The 67-year-old La Russa announced his retirement at a news conference at Busch Stadium.

The World Series win over Texas was the third of La Russa's 33-year career. The manager guided the Cardinals to the championship despite being 10½ games behind Atlanta on Aug. 25 for the final playoff spot in the National League.

La Russa retires third on the all-time wins list, 35 behind second-place John McGraw. In addition to this season, he won championships in Oakland in 1989 and St. Louis in 2006.
"Other than some of personal attachments, I feel good," La Russa said. "I feel good that this is the right decision."

La Russa said there wasn't a single factor that led to his decision, but he began having doubts about returning for 2012 midway through the season. In late August he told general manager John Mozeliak and other team officials.

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Red Sox pick up option on scutaro

As expected, the Boston Red Sox on Sunday picked up shortstop Marco Scutaro's $6 million team option for 2012.

Scutaro, who had a $3 million player option if the Red Sox had passed, hit a career-best .299 for the season with seven homers and 54 RBIs. He also posted a .358 on-base percentage and a .423 slugging percentage, both career highs.

He was one of the few Red Sox players to step up their game during the team's 7-20 September slide. Scutaro hit .387 in the final month of the season, third best in the American League. Over the last 10 years, only Manny Ramirez (.396 in 2002) and David Ortiz (.396 in 2007) have posted a higher September average for Boston. The strong final month gave Scutaro a .781 OPS that rivaled his final season in Toronto, which is considered to be the best of his career.

"Scutaro had a really good year and we believe he'd be very coveted this offseason if he got into the market," general manager Ben Cherington said at his introductory press conference last week.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pedroia goes for a ride at Disney

The Red Sox are apparently a bunch of beer-guzzlin' goons. But here's wholesome second baseman Dustin Pedroia, enjoying a ride at Disney with his buddy, Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier.
Pedroia and Ethier were college teammates and remain good friends. Their families often vacation together. This does not necessarily mean Andre will play for the Red Sox someday. But it doesn't hurt.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Ben Cherington takes over

New Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington: 'There will be changes'

Three hours after the Cubs introduced former Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein as their new team president, the Red Sox today introduced Ben Cherington as the team's 11th general manager in a press conference at Fenway Park. Cherington takes over during a trying time for the Red Sox organization, but he also takes over for one of the most successful executives in team history.

"We've let our fans down in some important ways recently," said Cherington, who sat on the podium next to Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino. "The last few weeks have been painful and difficult. But what I'm left with is an incredible conviction that the Red Sox will be the best organization in baseball."

Cherington wished Epstein well and said it would be his job to balance what the Red Sox already do well with a need to move forward from a troublesome year.


Lackey to have Tommy John surgery

BOSTON—John Lackey will undergo reconstructive elbow surgery and miss the 2012 season, the latest setback in his rough year with the Boston Red Sox.

General manager Ben Cherington made the announcement Tuesday during a news conference at which he was introduced as the successor to Theo Epstein, who left to become president of baseball operations with the Chicago Cubs.

Lackey, a right-hander, was 12-12 with a 6.41 ERA in the second year of a five-year, $82.5 million contract. The Boston Globe reported after the season that he and fellow starters Josh Beckett and Jon Lester drank beer and ate fried chicken in the clubhouse during games in which they were not pitching.
Cherington said the Tommy John surgery would be performed, probably by noted orthopedist Dr. Lewis Yocum, but he did not know when. Lackey had elbow soreness during the season and had an MRI in May or June, Cherington said. He had another one after the season and was examined recently by Yocum in Los Angeles.
"John Lackey pitched through circumstances this year that I don't think any of us in this room can fully understand," Cherington said, "and he got beat up for it a little bit along the way. This guy was dealing with some stuff both on the field and off the field that were really difficult.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Dwight Gooden too high for parade

While his 1986 New York Mets teammates basked in the glory of millions during a ticker-tape parade to celebrate their World Series title, Dwight Gooden sat in a drug dealer's apartment, too high and paranoid to join them. Talking about his career and life, Gooden told ESPN's E:60 (airing Wednesday, 8 p.m. ET) that that's how his celebration of the World Series went after the star right-hander became hooked on cocaine during that season.

"After that game was over, we're celebrating and everything at the ballpark, in the clubhouse, and me and some of the guys went back out on the pitcher's mound and we had the big bottles of champagne. Then once everybody said we're going to this club in Long Island to hang out for a while, it was like, 'OK.' ...

"Well, my ride to the club I called a guy who I got drugs from, had him meet me there, was drinking, started using drugs. Then when the party started winding down, for myself a lot of times I get to a certain point of using drugs, the paranoia sticks in. So I end up leaving the party with the team, going to these projects, of all places in Long Island. Hang out there.


Padres Praying for Lackey.

Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the Padres have internally discussed the possibility of trading for John Lackey.

There's a connection between Lackey and Padres manager Bud Black, as Black was the right-hander's pitching coach for a number of years in Anaheim. Perhaps Black thinks he can help turn Lackey around after the Red Sox hurler posted a 6.41 ERA over 28 starts this season.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Adrian's two blasts pave the way to 11-4 win

ARLINGTON, Texas -- Adrian Gonzalez homered twice, Jacoby Ellsbury made an immediate impact in his return to the lineup and the Boston Red Sox finally won a game in Texas with an 11-5 victory Tuesday night.

Ellsbury led off the game with a single, stole second base and scored on the first homer by Gonzalez, putting the Red Sox ahead to stay. The All-Star center fielder had missed three straight games after getting hit in the back with a pitch. click here to continue

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Isotope Manny

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. -- Los Angeles Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez was welcomed back to baseball with rousing cheers. In the minor leagues, anyway.

Ramirez, easing back into playing shape after a 50-game drug suspension, suited up for the Albuquerque Isotopes as they beat Nashville 1-0. Ramirez wore No. 99 for the Dodgers' top farm club.

MY TAKE ON THIS. If you are suspended, you shouldn't be allowed to get into shape on a Minor League team. Let's get real, MLB.