Caught this post on the Huffington Post this morning, written by historian and basbeall fan Warren Goldstein. He’s been writing a lot about steroids and the Mitchell Report lately, and today talks about — well, I’m not sure what he’s talking about. I can’t tell if the inclusion of many Yankees and few Red Sox means poetic justice to Goldstein, but that was my first thought.

Anyway, he blames the Yankees for a lot of things:

During that time it’s been New York, and the Yankees, who’ve led the U.S. economic powerhouse, and built the most successful and lucrative franchise in the history of American sports. Whose screw-up opened the door to free agency? Who built the most gigantic payroll in the game, all the while complaining about “high-priced free agents”? And which sports town trains the most scrutiny on its teams, from all kinds of media? In which city do athletes most worry about the “pressure” of the hometown media and fans? In which city team is winning a pennant and losing the World Series considered a deep failure? And on which team do we have the most evidence of widespread steroid use–and I love this, given the economic parallels–and distribution?

Yeah, well, you’re going to have more evidence when the only two people to testify for the report were in New York. Had they nabbed a Boston trainer, you can be sure more Red Sox would have been on this list. But for a Yankee hater, that’s neither here nor there. Someone implicated some Yankees, and that’s good enough for them.

Notice the line I bolded, though. Uh, how did a Yankees screw-up lead to free agency? Anyone with a knowledge of baseball history knows that Dave McNally and Andy Messersmith opened the door to free agency when they didn’t sign their contracts for the 1975 season. An arbiter ruled that because they hadn’t signed contracts, they were not subject to the reserve clause, and thus granted free agency. McNally moved from Baltimore to Montreal, and Messersmith went from Los Angeles to Atlanta. Notice that the Yankees aren’t involved here.

Perhaps he’s referring to Catfish Hunter, whose incident occurred a year prior to McNally and Messersmith. The story is that A’s owner Charles Finley didn’t make an insurance payment on time, and Catfish had his contract voided. He then signed with the Yankees. So it was Finley’s screw-up there. The Yankees just took advantage of the situation.

Going back even further, we can tie the destruction of the reserve clause to Curt Flood’s Supreme Court case, which he ultimately lost. Thing is, Flood never played for the Yankees.

You’d think a historian would know all this, though…

Categories : Days of Yore
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Justin Snyder | UTIL

Snyder was born and raised in Lakeside, CA, a relatively small suburb north of San Diego. He attended El Capitan High School, where he starred as a three sport athlete. He lettered in baseball, football and soccer, and helped turn a mediocre baseball program into a Southern California powerhouse alongside future college teammates Jordan Abruzzo and Dustin Church. Snyder batted .407, was named First Team All-State, and helped the Vaqueros win their first California Interscholastic Federation Championship his junior season. He followed that up by hitting .470 as a senior, bringing El Capitan it’s second consecutive CIF Championship title. He again received All-State honors, but added All-American honors as well. Snyder went undrafted in 2004, and chose to attend The University of San Diego over San Diego State because of academics, even though Tony Gwynn’s alma mater recruited him more heavily.

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Categories : Prospect Profiles
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  • Let’s Go Gi-ants!!!

    Baseball news has slowed to a crawl these days, but you my have heard a little something about a football game being played tonight. I’m a Jets fan by trade, but I’m waiving my allegiance tonight so I can cheer on the G-Men as they attempt to foil the Patriots’ run at perfection. I can’t stand that no-talent ass clown known as Tom Brady, and in general I just hate all Boston area sports teams. The game is being broadcast simultaneously on CBS, NBC, MY9 and the NFL Network; discuss it here if you wish.

    Go Giants! (Don’t fuck it up, Eli.)
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On Friday, I dropped in a short post about the current exhibit on New York baseball history at the Museum of the City of New York. The exhibit runs through Monday, and if you’re looking for something to do over the next few days, I strongly recommend it.

But for those of you in not in the New York area or with no free time this weekend, worry not: I snapped a whole bunch of pictures at the exhibit of some of what I thought to be the more interesting sights. At left is a photo from the 1950s of a group of kids posed outside of Yankee Stadium. It’s a great shot of the exterior of the stadium before the renovations in the 1970s robbed the Stadium of that history. The new stadium — I’ll post photos of that next week — restores an entryway reminiscent of the original Yankee Stadium.

But what else can you see at the exhibit? Take a look. All links open the images in new windows:

If you can make it up to 103rd and Fifth for an hour or two tomorrow or Monday, check it out. The Glory Days of New York Baseball will be gone soon.

Categories : Days of Yore
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  • Yanks sign Juan Gonzalez?

    Tim from MLBTR found a report saying that the Yanks forked over a 2-yr, $2M deal to the now 38-yr old, Mitchell Report named ex-slugger. Juan Gone may have made the biggest blunder in the history of the universe when he rejected the Tigers’ 8-yr, $140M contract offer in 2001, a deal that would still have 2 years remaining. I don’t believe the report for a second – the Yanks have zero use for another DH, let alone a DH that hasn’t seen a Major League pitch in over 2 years. Chalk this one up to a slow news time.

    Update: Nevermind, turns out December 28th is “el Día de los Santos Inocentes” in Puerto Rico, or “The Day of Holy Innocents.” It’s their April Fools Day. Oh those clever Puerto Ricans.
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  • Predicting the Future

    PeteAbe has a humorous little post up predicting how the Yanks’ 2008 season will play out. My favorite part “Nov. 15: Hughes named Cy Young winner. ‘I owe it all to the faith an insomniac blogger had in me,’ he says.” Phil, you have no idea… · (3) ·

leyrtizmugshot.jpg Jim Leyritz was reportedly arrested on suspicion of DUI and vehicular homicide early Friday morning. Miami’s Local 10 has more:

Police said Jim Leyritz was behind the wheel of a Ford SUV that collided with another vehicle at the intersection of Southwest Seventh Avenue and Second Street in the Himmarshee area of downtown Fort Lauderdale.

The impact caused the other car to roll over and the female driver of that vehicle was ejected and she died after being taken to Broward General Medical Center, police said.

Leyritz, a fan favorite when he played in the Bronx, currently works for Things do not look good for the King right now.

Categories : News
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Twins rookie GM has some case of cold feet. According to’s Jayson Stark, White is sitting on offers from the Yankees, Red Sox and Mets but doesn’t plan to move on them for several weeks.

Stark writes:

The Twins continue to stay in contact with the Red Sox, Yankees, Mets and Mariners about a Johan Santana deal. But those talks have moved so slowly it’s now possible a Santana trade may not get done “for several weeks,” according to one source with knowledge of the discussions…

The Twins are now telling other teams that they may hold Santana until spring training to get the package they want. But it’s also possible at some point that Santana and his agents may step in and say that if a deal isn’t completed sooner, he may no longer be willing to waive his no-trade clause.

So for now, the biggest prospective deal of the offseason remains stuck in quicksand. And that won’t change until one of these teams flinches.

Interestingly, the Mets seem very much in these trade talks. This is exactly the kind of move Omar Minaya needs to make after the 2007 collapse and subsequent failure to do much of anything this season.

So for now, nothing doing. Again.

Categories : Hot Stove League
Comments (19)