Unconfirmed Report: Rocco Baldelli misdiagnosed


Via MLBTR, it sounds like doctors may have misdiagnosed Baldelli with a potentially fatal mitochondrial disorder. Ken Bell of ABC6 in New England says the Baldelli family told him doctors at the Cleveland Clinic have diagnosed him with channelopathy, a very treatable and non-progressive condition. I haven’t seen confirmation of this anywhere else, which leaves me skeptical, but for Rocco’s sake I hope it’s true. It would be a major dick move on Bell’s part if the report turned out to be false. It goes without saying that I hope the Yanks go after him if this is the case, but first and foremost let’s all wish Rocco the best. The guy deserves to have something go his way for once.

Update (12:30pm): Baldelli semi-confirmed this report.

Categories : Asides, Hot Stove League
  • jsbrendog

    rocco, rocco’s modern life (rocco’s modern life) shaaaaaaa

    here’s hoping he’s healthy and can get a good paycheck from the Yankees to play CF and be an all star.

  • TurnTwo

    but do we know that the diagnosis of the misdiagnosis was itself properly diagnosed?

  • Brian R

    Yanks should definitely go after him if this report is true. Athletic CF who can play any OF position. He has some power. He is young, and would allow the yanks to not rush Ajax to the majors. He is AL East battle tested. Has been through a lot in his career already. I think he would be a great fit and wouldn’t require the yanks to trade any players to get a CF.

  • Ivan

    Well that’s great news for Rocco.

    Hopefully the yanks look at him as an option.

    • Chris C.

      Listen……..I don’t want to be mean or anything, because I wish the guy the best of luck and a life of great health.

      But why should the Yankees have any interest in Rocco Baldelli?

      • Old Ranger

        Because when healthy, he is a very good player. 27/09.

      • Double-J

        Because, when healthy, he’s much better than any of the other guys we’re currently looking at to play center field next year?

  • Joe

    By treatable do they mean he wont be tired anymore or that he wont be dying as fast. Need to learn more about what that all means before he can seriously become an option.

  • DCR

    How conveinent for his market value.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Heh, good point.

    • mustang

      A bit cold, but good.

      • mustang


  • Ryan S.

    I personally would take a pass on him, though I wish the guy the best of luck and I’d imagine he’ll find job offers from quite a few teams. I just wouldn’t feel confident about his health until I see him in action for another year.

  • UWS

    “Channelopathy” is a very general term, used to describe a whole slew of conditions, including Cystic Fibrosis, for example. Obviously I’m not saying Rocco has CF, but just saying hooray, he’s got channelopathy, everything’s hunky dory is a gross oversimplification. Some channelopathies can be just as deadly as the mitochondrial myopathy he was supposed to have.

    • Andy In Sunny Daytona

      I’m not a doctor, but I play one in bars, but you’re right. I’ve read that it is highly treatable, if caught early. But I have no idea what “early” means in a medical timetable.
      My educated opinion leads me to believe that he is lazy, but then again, I’m not that educated.

  • Mike Pop

    Depends on the $$…. How much is he worth 4, 5 million ?

  • Reggie C.

    This probably means a new course of treatment is necessary. Hopefully it doesn’t hurt Baldelli on his mission of strengthening his body. That said, he’s NOT READY to assume a full-time CF job !!

    In the meanwhile, Baldelli can still swing a mean bat. He’s a good, cheap, high-reward option for DH / 4th OF. In other words, Mats would have to get traded if the Yanks signed Baldelli.

    • DCR

      Its too bad there is no market for Matsui. He is keeping this team from being a juggernaut. If not for his contract then the offer to Teixeira could be more lucrative and the Yankees wouldn’t have to consider Manny (not that I mind this, but I obviously would rather Tex).

      • Ryan S.

        There’s more to Tex than just Matsui being in the way. You’re clogging your 1B position for a long time, with guys like Posada, Jeter, A-Rod, and also prospects Juan Miranda or Jesus Montero (possibly). That’s going to be an important spot for players we’re already committed to.

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          While I disagree with that assessment, sadly it seems to be the line of thought the club is buying into.

        • Chris

          There’s no reason to immediately assume that either Posada or A-Rod would need to move off of their positions. There are plenty of players that stayed at 3B until the ends of their careers. There are also some (though not as many) catchers able to catch through the end of their careers – one example being Carlton Fisk who still caught regularly into his 40s.

          Jeter may need to move off short, but there is the possibility of moving him to the OF instead of 1B. Juan Miranda is a fine backup or platoon player, but that should impact signing a super-star player. And you should never let a prospect in A ball (and still playing a different position) influence your ML decisions.

          • Chris C.

            “There’s no reason to immediately assume that either Posada or A-Rod would need to move off of their positions.”

            Good Lord! Since AROD is here for another 9 years, I sincerely hope he won’t be moving off 3rd base anytime soon. That’s a scary thought.

          • Ryan S.

            I agree that none of the scenarios I’ve brought up are likely, especially for 2009 and yes, prospects should never be that big of a factor on decisions like this. However, you need to have a longer term outlook than just ’09. If Tex is stuck at first for the next 8+ years, you’re losing flexibility you might need in the future. Its a valid long-term consequence that needs to be considered.

            • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              If Tex is stuck at first for the next 8+ years, you’re losing flexibility you might need in the future. Its a valid long-term consequence that needs to be considered.

              You’re taking the flexibility argument too far. Yes, we’d be giving 1B to tex for 8 years, meaning that we can’t put anybody else at 1B for those 8 years. But, the goal is to not sign players to contracts where we will eventually have no room to play them anyway, so all Tex would do is prevent us from signing other players to bad, overly long/expensive contracts in the future, since we’d be losing our “move them to 1B” escape route.

              Therefore, signing Tex to an 8 year deal is not bad, but signing Tex to an 8 year deal and then subsequently signing Adam Dunn to a 5 year deal would be bad… or signing Tex to an 8 year deal and then trading for Paul Konerko or David Ortiz would be bad…

              The flexibility argument is based on the 2006-2009 Yankees, who had a glut of aging, poor defenders who didn’t play any position well (Giambi, Abreu, Matsui, Damon). Most of those players are gone now. As our roster is currently constructed, here’s the players we’re worried about not being able to effectively play their position:

              1) Posada (signed through 2011)
              2) Jeter (signed through 2010, but likely to be resigned for another 4-6 years)
              3) ARod (signed through 2017)

              Now, consider this: After 2009, we have 1 DH spot and 3 OF spots that are utterly open and uncommitted for the foreseeable future. Meaning, you could easily allocate the DH spot as follows, if you so chose:

              2012-ARod (not that he’d need it)
              2013- ARod (not that he’d need it)
              2014- ARod (he turns 39 this season, maybe this is where he can’t handle 3B anymore)
              2015- ARod
              2016- ARod
              2017- ARod

              Which leaves Jeter. Between SS and one of the three OF spots, he’ll be fine for the next 8 years.

              So basically, there’s no scenario where any of our currently under contract players would NEED to move to 1B, at all. The only way Tex becomes a bad signing hampering our ability to have positions for everybody is if we add TWO first basemen in the next few years, and not just one.

              Tex by himself is fine.

          • Bruno

            There’s no reason to immediately assume that either Posada or A-Rod would need to move off of their positions.

            NO reason? Does Posada’s ’08 ring any bells?

        • Chris C.

          Yeah, and soon to become a new cloggee……MANNY RAMIREZ!

          The most clogged position on the Yankees is not 1st base………’s DH!

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        There’s a market for him… it’s just not a GOOD market. We’re not going to get anything of substantial valuefor him. But, we can give him away, if necessary.

        We shouldn’t let his short term deal preclude us from making long-term solutions for this team.

        • Chris

          The problem with Matsui is his no-trade clause, which may (or may not) eliminate any potential market for him.

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            I doubt it’s that serious of a problem if we truly have no room for him to play.

          • DCR

            Reportedly, Matsui would waive his NTC if the Yankees wished to trade him.

        • DCR

          Any scenario I see Matsui being traded in involves the Yankees eating salary, which would be counter productive to what they’re trying to do.

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Eating a portion of a one-year, 13M salary obligation to clear room for a larger acquisition of Manny or Tex is not “counterproductive”.

            We’re primarily interested in freeing up roster space, not salary space.

      • Reggie C.

        Cash could try to trade Mats to Billy Beane for a couple b prospects. The A’s could use Mats and put him in the DH slot. Mats still gets on base at a good clip, and he could hit 40 doubles at that spacious stadium. OF course, we’d have to eat significant salary.

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          I think Seattle and Texas are more natural fits. The A’s still have Jack Cust, and would likely sign Giambi to a cut-rate deal befoew sacrificing prospects (of any value) for Matsui.

          But’ it’s a possibility.

          • Reggie C.

            I’m just trying to make sure that Mats ends up in a city with awesome weather.

          • Chris C.

            And you just know that any prospects that Billy Beane bamboozles Cashman into taking won’t pan out anyway.

            When was the last time Beane dealt a prospect that turned out to be anything decent? Jeremy Bonderman?

            • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              Heh, that Bonderman trade was worst than you remember:

              Oakland loses: Jeremy Bonderman, Carlos Pena, Franklyn German
              Oakland adds: Ted Lilly, John-Ford Griffin, Jason Arnold


              • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside


                June 24, 2004
                As part of a 3-team trade, traded Mike Wood and Mark Teahen to the Kansas City Royals. Received Octavio Dotel from the Houston Astros. In addition, the Houston Astros sent John Buck and cash to the Kansas City Royals and the Kansas City Royals sent Carlos Beltran to the Houston Astros.


                December 13, 2005

                Traded Andre Ethier to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Received Milton Bradley and Antonio Perez.

        • DCR

          In addition, why would anyone want Matsui? He can’t play the field and has two bum knees.

    • Brooklyn Ed

      ….or just platoon him with Gardner.

      • Reggie C.

        I’m assuming that Gardner is starting and that the Cameron deal doesn’t materialize.

        • T-Dizzle

          gardner should start i think he could hit 280 and steal 70 bases and play awesome D so its no brainer

          • Ryan S.

            If only.

  • Ivan

    Just imagine an defensive outfield of Rocco and A-Jax. Talk about about covering some ground.

    • Chris C.

      “Just imagine an defensive outfield of Rocco and A-Jax. Talk about about covering some ground.”

      And an outfield of Gardner and Jackson would cover less ground? Heck, at least they’re already in the organization. Would ANYTHING split the gap between those two guys?

      • Ivan

        Yea but you to take in account that Baldelli is a better player than Gardner and has much more upside. Who would you rather have in CF, Gardner or Rocco?

        • Ryan S.

          If Rocco was 100% and you could play him in CF for 140+ games a year, it’s easily Baldelli. If Rocco continues to have medical issues (its not like they just went away because he was misdiagnosed), than I’d lean pretty heavily towards Gardner.

        • DCR

          What upside does Baldelli have? He isn’t getting any younger and can’t play a full season.

          • Mike A.

            He’s only two years older than Gardner.

            • Chris

              He’s still not getting any younger….

            • DCR

              Hes 27 and can’t stay on the field. There’s a reason there little talk about him.

            • radnom

              And actually knows a thing or two about what to do with those oddly shaped peices of wood everyone keeps swinging around….

          • Bruno

            Have you EVER seen him hit? All-Star bat no doubt.

  • E-ROC

    Why is the article in CAPS?

    Video footage of Ken Bell’s report.

  • J.R.

    Baldelli said the original diagnosis of a mitochondrial disorder was “the best diagnosis at the time.” Now the thinking is that he has channelopathy, and he said he’s reacting well to changes in his medication. “Knowing this is a treatable condition, I feel this is a very positive thing for me and my baseball career,” he said. “With this less-severe diagnosis, I hope to be on the field on a much more regular basis.”

    Does this scream negotiating ploy to anyone else?

  • ABS

    A well-deserved bashing of Michael Kay. I am a die-hard Yankee fan and all but this guy deserves it

    • Ivan

      Even if you are a yankee fan like me, you don’t have to support Michael Kay.

      Kay is a moron and is paid to suck off the yanks.

      • Ryan S.

        I love it when Ken Singleton takes over as the play-by-play guy when Kay has the series off or whatever. How is he not the main guy every day?

        • Ivan

          I like the combo of Singleton and Cone

          • Ryan S.

            Cone was awesome last year once he got used to the camera. I liked the perspective he gave on the Yankee clubhouse and he did a good job talking about pitchers. He knows his shit.

            • Mike Pop

              I like Leiter because he taught me how to throw a curveball

              • Axl

                No love for Flaherty? The only draw back is he sounds exactly like Al Leiter and you can barely ever tell them apart when they’re on together…

                • Mike Pop

                  He is in the Irish-American HOF….???? Why ???

            • Bruno

              I like Cone because he jacked a guy off in the ‘pen!

  • Ivan

    One more thing,

    Could somebody Tell Lombardi to stop with the dumb questions like

    Would you trade A-Rod for Longoria or would you trade A-Rod for BJ Upton.

    We get it, you don’t like A-Rod, but please stop hating on the dude.

    • UWS

      Yeahhh, good luck with that. When Lombardi starts hating on someone (ARod, Cashman, Phil Hughes), his obstinacy is akin to those who insist on putting Joba in the bullpen.

    • Steve S

      easy way is to just ignore his website. the guy has lost any credibility with his agenda against specific people.

  • Relaunch

    I think we all hope that he has the treatable condition, but why should the Yanks go after him? If they do, it should only be with expectations of a player who can play 40 games. It would be foolish to think he will all of a sudden be healthy and a fulltime player again.

    • Ivan

      Might be a better option than Cameron.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Cameron can likely play 150 games in CF. Baldelli likely cannot.

        • Bruno

          Exactly. Gives Gardner more PT

  • Glen L

    Personally, I’d rather sign Baldelli then trade for cameron and let melky/gardner/baldelli play it out

    (this is assuming we don’t sign Tex, Manny, Dunn or any other bat)

    • Bruno

      Rocco AND Dunn.

  • Mike

    I like him more than ManRam or Dunn…

    B/C of years and price and defense!

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Rocco Baldelli’s price and defense >>>>>>> Manny and Dunn’s price and defense

      Manny and Dunn’s total value to a team, including offensive production and health >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Rocco Baldelli’s total value to a team, including offensive production and health

      • Bruno

        Yup yup. I’d love Rocco in CF (and healthy obviously) But if you put a gun to my head and said “Dunn or Rocco?” Dunn it is.

  • Brian R

    And where is Dunn playing?


    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Matsui- Benched or traded


      Nady- traded for value

      And, the same scenarios work for Manny Ramirez.

      Damon, Matsui, and Nady are all leaving this team after 2009. The “there’s no room for everybody!!!!1!!1!!11!!!” argument doesn’t hold much water. Players in the final year of their contract can either be benched or traded fairly easily.

      • J.R.

        Benching a $13 million player is a horrible idea.

        • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          Agreed. Letting a player making 13M for one more year stop you from acquiring a player as good as Manny or Tex is also a horrible idea. Particularly when you’re the Yankees and you make more money than any other team in baseball.

          Pick your poison.

  • http://yahoo jad

    Baldelli is a no brainer. He would be cheap compared to any othe CF solution and when he first came up, I watched him track down fly balls in CF with Number 5 on his back and he was as graceful as Joe D. Granted he is not that player anymore but a helluva lot better option in CF for 130 games a year than what we have. By the way, he can hit and with a name like Baldelli , he belongs in the Bronx. I liked him before the Cleveleand Clinic made their diagnosis I love him today.Channelopathy is completely treatable and will not affect him at all on the field as long as his meds are regulated. Go get him CASH MAN and stop screwing around with Cameron. Worst case, between Gardner/Melky and Rocco, CF will not be an issue. Trade the warrior with dignity–he won’t stand in the way. Matsui is nothing if not a helluva man and baseball player. I hate to see him go, but he just doesn’t fit right now. Get Texiera no matter what the cost. Pull th eoffer to Pettitte thus saving both Matsui and Andy’s salaries to subsidize Tex.
    Damon LF, Jeter SS, Tex 1b, ARod 3b, Jorge C, NAdy, rf,CAno 2b, Baldelli CF and whoever you want at DH. Guaranteed series appearance with pitching defense and hitting. CC<AJJOBA>HUGHES/ACEVES