Friday, August 31, 2007
Thursday, August 30, 2007
C Jason Kendall (Cubs)
- Since Jason Kendall joined the Cubs, he has been ripping the ball batting .337 with 1 HR and 14 RBI in his last 30 days. He would be a great guy platooning with a struggling catcher like Ronny Paulino or even Jason Varitek.
1B Ross Gload (Royals)
- Gload has been ripping the cover off the ball lately for KC and would be a great pickup if someone goes down. He is batting .338 with 4 HR and 13 RBI in his last thirty days and although some time might be taken away because of Butler, Sweeney, and Shealy, he can play some outfield.
2B Howie Kendrick (Angels)
- Kendrick is returning from injury and is picking up where he left off. He has been batting .304 with 1 HR and 8 RBI and is getting some great pitches batting in front of Guerrero and Anderson.
3B Edwin Encarnacion (Reds)
- Encarnacion has had some off the field problems but has come back and has been very strong collecting 35 hits with 2 HR in the last 30 days. If you do not have a good third baseman he would be a great pickup to replace him.
SS Ryan Theriot (Cubs)
- Theriot has been consistent all season but is not getting much attention because of certain players on the Cubs. However, he steals bases, scores runs, and hits for solid average, all key attributes that will help your team.
OF Nook Logan (Nationals)
- Nook has struggled a little bit this season but is starting to heat up stealing bases, getting on base, and scoring runs. I wouldn't say a necessity, but if you have someone struggling, he would be a solid pickup.
OF Jason Werth (Phillies)
- He has a had a solid year but is making great contact almost every at-bat. Not to many people know about this Phillies outfielder, but a player like this would definitely change some close games.
OF Johnny Damon (Yankees)
- Damon has struggled a lot this year but is starting to heat up again and would be a good pickup to see if his hot streak continues. He will see some playing time in September and knows how to play the big games. He would be a smart, low risk pick up.
SP Brian Bannister (Royals)
- This rookie has really stepped up in the Royals rotation and put up pretty impressive season numbers. However, some leagues have not taken notice of him and he is left on the market. He is 4-1 with a 2.96 ERA in the last thirty days, but has 11 wins this season.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
ELI: You pitched back to back games successfully Aug. 18th and 17th, what was working for you during those outings?
ROCKY: You know, I was commanding my fastball pretty well, getting ahead of hitters. And when I threw my slider, which is my out pitch, I will speed their bats up with my fastball and then fool them a little bit with the slider that forces a ground ball or a strikeout.
ELI: What do you think was most improved in your game from the end of high school to when you got drafted at
ROCKY: In high school I was still inconsistent. I'd have some games where I'd throw the ball exceptionally well and I'd have games where I wasn't throwing that well. In college, my coach dropped my arm angle down to a three-quarter slot and when that happened, I was able to get a lot of good movement leading to ground balls. And professional scouts, especially Chicago Cubs scouts because balls fly out of Wrigley, like to see a pitcher that can throw a good sinker and I think that was probably the biggest difference.
ELI: In 2005, you had Tommy John Surgery, what do you remember from the game where it happened.
ROCKY: Well, it was in the first inning against the second batter, and my arm was feeling fine. I went back to throw it, right where you are about to whip your arm through the zone, it was like time had stopped, even though it didn't. It seemed like time stopped and I felt a tear in my elbow. I kind of had an out of the body experience like I was looking at arm, but I wasn't looking at my arm. Like I was looking at my arm as it was tearing. It was kind of a weird experience because as soon as I through it, I was like 'Oh man.' The trainers and coaches came running out to ask what was wrong. I tried to throw another pitch and I two hopped it to the plate and I was like 'Oh man.' The funny thing was at the time I was 25, my first year in Double-A, I was like, what am I going to do? Sit out another year and a half, get surgery, I was actually thinking about hanging it up and not pursuing baseball anymore, but I'm glad I didn't.
ELI: After the swelling went down in your elbow, what were the next steps to getting back?
ROCKY: Truly, my surgery went as well as it possibly could. I had the surgery done by Dr. Steven Gryzlo and he did a great job. I remember for about two weeks I couldn't do anything because I had the stitches in. I could move it a little, but it was basically in a cast, one of those Velcro casts. Fortunately, the swelling wasn't that bad, my body acted well to the implant tendon. Also, I came back after nine months, which was exceptionally fast. Everything fell into place, I had one minor setback but it wasn't bad. God really blessed me and gave me a good recovery.
ELI: You worked at Home Depot during the summer of 2005, what was that like? Do a lot of minor leaguers get jobs on the side?
ROCKY: Man that was a great experience, I really enjoyed that. Being around people, helping people. Also, my father has a painting company, so I was familiar with paint and that was where I worked. It was good because when people came in and asked questions, I was able to help them out, tell them shortcuts, little tricks for trade, you know? It was a great experience for me though and I made some money on the side too. But I did it more for me to stay sharp for my fathers company because I know I'll end up working there.
ELI: Do a lot of minor leaguers get jobs on the side?
ROCKY: I think most of your guys will have some income coming in the fall except for your first five round guys, the big money guys. You just can't live off of 1500 dollars a month for five months, just can't do it. A lot of people do lessons because that is a good way to make money. They help out other kids and you get paid well, there are all different kinds of things.
ELI: What was spring training like for you this year? What pitchers, if any, did you work with?
ROCKY: That was my first big league camp and that was pretty exciting for me. I wanted to go in there and just show them that I belong there. That I have good enough stuff to be there and I ended up kind of making a name for myself. This was my first one so I didn't open up too much didn't talk to much, just sort of hung back. Michael Barrett really kind of helped me out, really worked with me a lot. 'What's your best pitch when facing a certain hitter at this count? What would you throw?' He'd have me write them down on a chart. We did a lot of things to help with the mental side of the game. Of course Ryan Dempster was really nice, a joy to be around, and would always make you laugh.
ELI: Can you take me through the night you got called up on? Did you know something was up?
ROCKY: Yeah the day I got called up we were winning a one run [game] in about the ninth inning and I should be getting up to close the game. And he [Manager Buddy Bailey] gave me my signal, which every guy in the ‘pen has a signal and mine is the uppercut, like Rocky Balboa. So he gives me the fist, and then tells me to sit down. And I was like ‘What the world?’ You know I haven’t thrown in a couple days. Someone else got up and started throwing and that’s when I first thought ‘Alright, something is going on.’ So when I got in the locker room, usually the manager will call you in and say ‘Hey Rock you’re going up to the big leagues, you got the call.’ But he didn’t call me in so I was like ‘What in the world is going on?’ So I left and went to the hotel room and I had no idea what was going on. Next thing I knew was I got a call from my pitching coach Mike Harkey and he was like ‘Has Buddy Bailey called you?’ And I was like ‘No. Why?’ And then he was like ‘Oh. Damn. Call me back when he calls you.’ Obviously I knew what was going on and about five minutes later Buddy Bailey calls me up and says [impression of accent] ‘Rock, you’ve been called up to the big leagues.’ That’s how he kind of talks. I kind of expected it, but I still didn’t know how to take it in. It was a good feeling though, words I wanted to hear for a long time.
ELI: What did it mean to you to get called up so early in the season?
ROCKY: It felt like I accomplished something I worked so hard for. And I have had so many set backs and obstacles to overcome. It seems that things hadn’t fallen my way and I feel like my persistence and hard work to make it to this level really paid off. I felt like, in my heart, you know a ‘Yes!” Just wanted to quench my fist and grin my teeth like ‘Yeah baby! You did it, you did it!’ I was overcome with emotion, this was my dream and I finally get to do it. It was kind of indescribable feeling; but it was great to call my parents and my brother.
ELI: Did you get too much sleep that night?
ROCKY: No, by the time I got done calling everybody and finally got into bed where I actually started thinking about it, I just sort of sat back and thought about it and waited until that morning.
ELI: You pitched 2/3 of an inning to get your first win in
ROCKY: Yeah, but after that happened with the rain, I didn’t know what was going to happen. From the previous year, the rule was that you would revert back to the inning before and that that inning would not have counted. So I wasn’t sure what was going to happen until I arrived at the ballpark the next day to finish up the first game and found out I was up for the win. It was one of the easiest wins I’d ever gotten because I threw two pitches, and got two ground ball outs. I’ll take it though. [Laughs].
ELI: The Iowa Cubs have a lot of solid players, what is the clubhouse chemistry like?
ROCKY: We’ve got a lot of talented players, a lot of 40-man guys and everyone has got a great attitude. No one is bitter about being called up or being sent down and everyone is happy if someone else gets the call, you know? It is better than I expected because I had always heard that Triple-A players can be pretty bitter because they feel like someone is in there way or that they deserve it. But I feel that we have a lot of young players and people appreciate them for being where they are now and I think that is why we have had a pretty good year, despite all the transactions.
ELI: When in the Cubs bullpen, what would you was usually the topic of discussion? Was it mostly baseball?
ROCKY: No, I’d say it is talking about the night before or past players on the other team that they played with. He would do something and someone would be like ‘Oh, I remember this guy in ’99, he’s a good dude.’ Just talking about other players, really normal conversation that you would carry on everyday.
ELI: Who’s the biggest jokester?
ROCKY: Oh Dempster is by far. He is entertaining, always got to toughen up his sleeves, and loves doing Borat impressions. He’s always out there quoting movies; he’s got it going on.
ELI: Of the stadiums you’ve played at, who would you say has the best mound?
ROCKY: Hmm, best mound [pause]. You know, they all seem pretty much the same. I don’t know if they have certain measurements or anything, but they are all really good, the clay is great, the footing is good. They are all great and I’d like to pitch on all of them.
ELI: How about the best bullpen setup?
ROCKY: I kind of like Pittsburgh because you are in center field to watch the game, get to see the pitcher throwing in and out, how the hitters are swinging at different pitches, etc. But the bad part was that I had to walk across the field with my pink backpack, which is for the youngest or least experienced bullpen guy to carry out the gum, seeds, and all that stuff.
ELI: Who is the toughest hitter you’ve faced in your time with the Cubs?
ROCKY: I faced Albert Pujols and likely he lined out to second.
ELI: What was that like seeing him walk up though?
ROCKY: Oh, well it was my second outing and the three batters I had to face were
ELI: Oh god.
ROCKY: I know. I was like ‘Whoa.’ But you know how you see him on TV and everything but when I faced him I felt like there was no weakness to exploit. So I just hoped to throw a good pitch that he would hit at somebody.
ELI: If you could pitch to one hitter, in the past or present, who would it be?
ROCKY: I’d like to pitch to Barry Bonds, just to say I faced him. I mean, he is the homerun leader of everybody, [which] would be something to tell your kids. He is the next Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron, you know what I mean? That would probably be the one guy I faced.
UPDATE: THE DODGERS CLAIMED LOAIZA OFF WAIVERS FROM THE A'S. TERMS OF DEAL WERE NOT DISCLOSED.
JASON: Growing up in
ELI: What parts of your game were most improved at Seton Hall?
JASON: My velocity was improved a lot. You know, I was 6'3'' and 160 pounds so once I got some more strength I really had a chance to develop my curveball and changeup. From there, I was getting some attention from scouts who had watched me in high school and with the talent on my team; I was getting attention off of them too. I got to play with Matt Morris who was a junior when I was a freshman. He taught me a lot about what he was going through, and I watched him and what it took so that I could be in the same position my junior year.
ELI: Just two years after being drafted, you were traded in a rather big deal. What were your thoughts on that?
JASON: My initial feelings were upset and shocked. The Giants were the team that drafted me, and being a high pick you get every opportunity, but now I was with a team that I was unfamiliar with and all those 'extras' were taken away. But from the trade I learned that baseball is a business and a lot of things are out of your control. I was excited though about going back to the East Coast because I wasn't really a West Coast guy. And I would also get to see my family a lot more because they are in
ELI: In 2005 you were a free agent, what were the steps in signing with the Tigers? Were any other teams interested?
JASON: Yeah, I was talking with the Tigers, Twins, and Pirates and when it came down to the decision that had to be made, I wrote out a list of all the positives and negatives for each team and checked out their rosters to see where I thought the team was heading, and where or if I could contribute. The reason I chose the Tigers was because their positives strongly outweighed any other teams. I also saw that I could fit in on their roster and contribute.
ELI: You clinched the championship game for the Toledo Mud Hens, do you remember a lot from that game?
JASON: I think what I remember most from that game is that there was a two hour rain delay and how we were sort of all on edge being up 2-0 on the Indianapolis Indians. But we knew we were going to win because we were so pumped up. There were so many winners and great guys on that team too. They just played to win and knew how to do it in style
ELI: What was it like pitching in the WBC? What did you learn from that experience?
JASON: Oh, it was a thrill. It was playing playoff baseball during the spring. You know, Spring Training isn't as intense of atmosphere as the WBC was. Especially being its inaugural season, everyone is so intense and the spotlight is on and every game you put on the line, I learned a lot from it and had the opportunity to play with some other great Italian players throughout the major leagues.
ELI: You grew up around the Tigers seeing your Dad pitch there; do you feel more comfortable pitching there because it is your hometown?
JASON: It is honor to be a Tiger, returning home to where I was born. I wasn't raised here, and I don't remember much of when he pitched, but getting the opportunity to where his number, 49, and be with the Tigers, it is like I'm reliving his career. If I had to compare it to something, I would compare it to playing catch with your old man. I'm carrying on his legacy, and I like to think about it a lot, gives me a sense of pride every time I put on the jersey.
ELI: What was it like watching Verlander's no-hitter, when did you realize he had one?
JASON: Oh, he had dominating stuff and had it the whole game. He needed and had every bit of everything to get it to. Neifi [Perez] turned a great double play and Mags [Ordonez] made a couple great catches out there. I noticed he had it early, but I shook it off because of superstition. You know how it is, you say something and then it happens, and you get blamed for it all. So I kept my mouth shut, but I kept my eye out for it.
ELI: Does the manager usually say something before each game? Is there any sort of meeting before each game?
JASON: No, there really isn't a meeting before the game. Occasionally, [Jim]
ELI: How'd you get the nickname Cheese Man?
JASON: [Laughs] I got it from Gene Lemont. My father's nickname was the Big Cheese and Gene gave me
ELI: Can you tell me a little bit about your business venture, Perfect Pitch Marketing?
JASON: I love to learn about business and studied Marketing in college. I incorporated my love for baseball into the name of my business, Perfect Pitch Marketing. I figured with all my free time, I can also utilize my persistent character to develop some great ideas around a great product and service. I also love to network and meet other successful people in my travels. My business mainly focuses on providing VoIP phone service with video capabilities that is becoming more widely recognized and used today. Yeah it is something I do to distract me from baseball that I have a lot of interest in. It gives people and businesses alike a chance to connect through their Video phone or computer anywhere in the world. You know, you get to see them from long distances. The cost is very low, and the video quality is better than web cams, because there are no glitches or delays. It would great for people who travel constantly or sports athletes who are always traveling. I love it because I see my wife and family often when I am on the road.
ELI: Besides baseball, do you follow any other sports?
JASON: I love college basketball and the NFL. I love Sunday's at home, getting to watch my Giants in High Def. [Laughs]
ELI: What do you think about Michael Vick and everything that is happening with him?
JASON: I think he made a bad choice, and when you are in the spotlight all the time it can be magnified even worse. He is paying some tough consequences, but I hope that he is not judged to harshly by everyone. I am sure he is a great guy, he just made a bad choice and the law is coming down on him. You know, everyone loves drama, especially when it involves celebrities. I just feel bad for him and his family, because he is under a lot of scrutiny right now.
ELI: Which team has the best bullpen setup?
JASON: It has to be
ELI: What would you say was your welcome to the major leagues moment?
JASON: This is probably a cookie cutter answer like everyone else’s, but you never forget your first game in the big leagues. It would have to be my first win against the Braves. But I also got my first hit, driving in a run. It was a very cool moment for me, and it is something I'll never forget.
Monday, August 27, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Saturday, August 25, 2007
Jake, Wilmette, Illinois
ELI: I will definitely be doing more interviews after the season. I have some big name players already lined up, so I am pretty excited. As for the newest feature, it is not official yet because I haven't talked with some of these guys in awhile but when it is, you will definitely know about it.
Q: Do you ever get time off from this stuff?
Martin, Yuma, Arizona
ELI: The low times in the trades and signings are my time off. But I like doing this, so I try to work on it everyday.
Q: Did you ever get a chance to talk with Michael Barrett about his thoughts on being traded?
Doug, San Diego Padres Town
ELI: Unfortunately, I didn't get to personally talk with him. But from what I heard, he was disappointed by the way he left things, but was looking forward to the opportunity.
Friday, August 24, 2007
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
ELI: To be honest, I haven’t heard much of anything about Manhattan College Baseball, what was it like? What skills do you think were improved the most?
ELI: Were you in contact with any major league club leading into the draft?
NICK: Yeah a couple, but the Cardinals were definitely the most interested. I went to a tryout for the Cardinals and Phillies, took some questionnaires for the Astros and other teams, but the Cardinals kept in touch the most.
ELI: What was it like when you got the call?
NICK: Oh, it was great, overwhelmed by the situation. I was at my girlfriend’s house when it happened. And I got a call from a scout with the Cardinals tell me I got drafted, and man was I excited.
ELI: When you were drafted, did you even consider not playing baseball?
NICK: No, not at all. It is a dream of any kid to play professional ball so when the opportunity presented it self, I was happy and ready to go. It was a no doubter.
ELI: You signed right after the draft, what was it like making the switch from the metal bat to the wooden bat?
NICK: Well, I played up in the
ELI: When do you usually go over signs with a relief pitcher? After warm up pitches when he comes into the game?
NICK: You know we usually are on the same page I just go out there to reiterate the situation, signs, batter and things like that. The pitchers are usually pretty ready so all I have to do is reiterate what the situation is and stuff like that.
ELI: Your power numbers shot up from junior to senior year, did you notice doing anything different in the off-season to prepare for senior year?
NICK: Yeah, I lifted a lot more and put a lot more work into hitting than any other year. I made sure that I got as much hitting as possible.
ELI: You are represented by Sterling Sports Management, how’d you come into contact with them?
NICK: They actually contacted me and called me. And we talked for awhile and I liked what he was telling me and now they are my acting representation.
ELI: If you could catch for one pitcher in the past or present, who would it be?
NICK: Whitey Ford.
ELI: Did you have a favorite player growing up?
NICK: Craig Biggio. He is such a good player and plays the game with such class from start to finish.
ELI: What would you rather do: Catch a perfect game to win the World Series, or hit a walk off homerun to win the World Series?
NICK: Definitely be a walk-off homerun.
Monday, August 20, 2007
Sunday, August 19, 2007
Dave S, Hollywood, Florida
ELI: I think teams are becoming more willing and eager to rush their top prospects to the major league level. Cameron Maybin was tearing it up at AA Erie batting .400 in six games. Teams don't want their players to adjust to worse talent and slow down in making it to the MLB. Justin Upton was the same way in AA Mobile batting .309 with 13 HR. They push them to play against better competition and for now it is paying off. I don't think baseball will get worse, if anything better because you have a lot of raw talent. Time will tell.
Q: The Iowa Cubs are loaded with solid players, where do you see there good players fitting in with the Cubs in the next couple of years?
Jon Parker, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
ELI: The Iowa Cubs do have a lot of MLB ready players that will probably be with the club next season. Geovany Soto will probably sharing time with Jason Kendall if he is brought back. Jake Fox could be on the bench next season as a utility player. The bullpen will probably include Carmen Pigniatello, Rocky Cherry, Clay Rapada, and Sean Gallagher. Felix Pie will be in center field for the Cubs next season and Mike Fontenot will be sharing time at second with Mark DeRosa. However, Micah Hoffpauir, Eric Patterson, and Josh Kroeger are all capable of making the team as well. Great teams are built from the ground up, so this should be an interesting team in a couple years.
Q: Who is the best free agent at each position coming in to this offseason?
Ethan, Highland Park, Illinois
C Jorge Posada
1B Kevin Millar (option)
2B Jeff Kent (option)
3B Alex Rodriguez (option)
SS David Eckstein
OF Andruw Jones
OF Torii Hunter
OF Aaron Rowand
SP Curt Schilling
RP Joe Nathan
Q: Where do you think Kosuke Fukudome will end up?
Gary, Nova Scotia
ELI: It is tough to say right now. The White Sox are looking to make a splash and might look at him. The Rangers missed out on Matsuzaka and may try at him. The Padres, Dodgers, and Giants, who have openings in their outfields after this season, may look for a cheap add on in Fukudome. There will be a lot of interest in Fukudome, and he will probably get a lot of money from a desperate team.
Q: Why do you think power numbers are down this year? The leading homerun hitter only has 39 homeruns.
ELI: I think the main reason for that is pitching. The pitching is a lot better and teams are pitching around big hitters. Also, teams are getting better scouting reports, and exploiting weaknesses better. And thanks to my most loyal reader Timothy for reminding me, players are not using steroids anymore cutting back a lot.
If you have any questions, email me at email@example.com
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
Thursday, August 16, 2007
ELI: Growing up in Illinois, were you a Cubs or Sox fan?
GARRETT: I was a Sox fan. Yeah, I grew up on the south side and was able to watch them growing up.
ELI: Did you have a favorite player?
GARRETT: I like Robin Ventura and Frank Thomas a lot, but I really like Ken Griffey Jr. when he was on the Mariners. I just tried to copy his swing growing up. He was probably my favorite player.
ELI: What was the draft experience like for you? Did you expect the Braves to take you?
GARRETT: The whole experience went by really quick for me. I had committed to Purdue before my senior year and I wasn't expected to go pro out of high school. But I was hitting well my senior year and I was told I could go in a decent round. One of my practices senior year the scout who told me this came up and told me I was taken in the 14th round. I was excited and wanted to sign because I thought I went at a pretty good round and had a good chance of making it.
ELI: Were you eager to sign?
GARRETT: Oh yeah, I wanted to sign. I was taken early enough where I thought I had a good chance to be successful and I thought it would be better then going to college. But if I was taken higher like in the 20s I probably would have thought I was better off at Purdue.
ELI: You spent some time in the Twins system before getting your call up this season, were you ever discouraged?
GARRETT: No, the Twins gave me a fair chance. Once I made it to Double-A I started hitting my stride, my power was good, and they told me what to do and I started doing it. They gave me a fair shot from there, especially with Morneau in front of me. I was just happy with the opportunities that were given to me.
ELI: Do you remember your first at-bats? Can you take me through them?
GARRETT: Yeah, my first at bat I came up and was nervous. I was just trying to focus and make good contact. My second at bat I came up and caught a change up down and away and drove it through the three hole for a single. I was excited because [Paul] Byrd is a veteran he was moving the ball pretty well across the plate.
ELI: Did you get the ball back?
GARRETT: Yeah, they gave me the ball back I got it authenticated and then I gave it to my dad after the game and now it is in my house.
ELI: At home, you hit a big triple off Jered Weaver, what were you thinking off the bat?
GARRETT: I saw right away off the bat, I sort of inside outed it. I was hoping it would get away from Gary Matthews and when it did I knew I had a double easily and I pushed it for three and made it easily.
ELI: What have the Twins been like in your stints with the team?
GARRETT: The Twins fans have been good, doing a lot of cheering. I came up for my first at-bats at home and they gave me a pretty good ovation despite being new. It was nice, the fans were always there and consistently cheering.
ELI: What time do you usually arrive at the stadium for a one o'clock game?
GARRETT: I'll arrive around nine o'clock. They like us to take BP before the game so I'll get there and eat some breakfast and then hit the cages before the game.
ELI: Do you have any pre-game routine you do on your own?
GARRETT: I like to hit off the tee, work on my swing a little bit. But besides that, I just like to relax and prepare mentally for the game. Yeah, nothing superstitious though.
ELI: What is your most cherished piece of sports memorabilia?
GARRETT: I had a four homer game in A-ball once and I kept the bat. It was exciting probably my best game down there so I kept the bat.
ELI: What would you rather see, a walk off homerun to win the World Series, or a no-hitter to win the World Series?
GARRETT: I think the homerun would be more exciting at the time, but a no-hitter would be awesome to see. At the moment, the homerun would be amazing and exciting, but I pitching a no-hitter especially in the World Series is impressive and I would to be a part of something like that.
ELI: If you could bat against any pitcher, past or present, who would it be?
GARRETT: It would have to be Nolan Ryan. The he threw the ball and how hard he threw, I think it would be cool to hit off him. He had such nasty stuff, I think I would choose him.
ELI: Who told you you were getting the call back up?
GARRETT: My [Triple-A] manager called me up, and it is funny because I haven't played great lately. Today, I had the hat trick, struck out three times and the day before that I didn't have a hit. So to get the call up now, it was nice. He just said 'the big club want you up there. They got some guys that are bang up...'
ELI: So when are you leaving?
GARRETT: I'm flying back tomorrow morning.
ELI: Alright, congratulations again.
GARRETT: Thanks a lot, talk to you.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Devil Rays David Price- Signed.
Kansas City Royals Mike Moustakas- Signed.
Chicago Cubs Josh Vitters- Signed.
Pittsburgh Pirates Daniel Moskos- Signed.
Baltimore Orioles Matt Weiters- Signed.
Washington Nationals Ross Detwiler- Signed.
Milwaukee Brewers Matt LaPorta- Signed.
Colorado Rockies Casey Weathers- Signed.
Arizona Diamondback Jarrod Parker- Signed.
San Francisco Giants Madison Bumgarner/Tim Alderson/Wenell Fairley- Signed.
Seattle Mariners Phillipe Aumont- Signed.
Florida Marlins Matt Dominguez- Signed.
Cleveland Indians Beau Millis- Signed.
Atlanta Braves Jason Heyward- Signed.
Cincinnati Reds Devin Mesoraco- Signed.
Toronto Blue Jays Kevin Ahrens/Jon Arencibia- Signed.
Texas Rangers Blake Beavan- Signed.
Texas Rangers Michael Main- Signed.
St. Louis Cardinals Pete Kozma- Signed.
Philadelphia Phillies Joe Savery- Signed.
Los Angeles Dodgers Chris Withrow- Signed.
San Diego Padres Nic Schmidt- Signed.
Chicago White Sox Aaron Poreda- Signed.
Oakland Athletics Donald Simmons- Signed.
Detroit Tigers Rick Porcello- Signed.
Minnesota Twins Ben Revere- Signed.
New York Yankees Andrew Brackman- Signed.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Joe Crede On His Way Out?: Joe Crede has been sidelined for a couple months now and has given plenty of space for Josh Fields to grow into third base. Many scouts are saying he is the next best thing for the White Sox, and is already putting up decent numbers. In 60 games, he is batting .247 with 12 HR and 39 RBI but has dominated in his last ten games and against lefties this whole season. Crede could be traded for a minor league pitcher or two, possibly to the Pirates, who they are on good trading terms with. But, a lot will determine how Fields finishes the season.
Monday, August 13, 2007
ELI: What are the major differences in playing here and in
CHIN-LUNG: Oh, I feel a lot more comfortable here. The stadiums are a lot nicer; the level of play is better and more competitive. The fans are great here and in
ELI: How does it feel to be a two-time All-Star in the minor leagues?
CHIN-LUNG: It’s an honor to be considered an All-Star and represent my team.
ELI: How does it feel to follow in the footsteps of Alfonso Soriano, Jose Reyes, and Grady Sizemore as the MVP of the futures game?
CHIN-LUNG: It was very exciting to win the award that so many great players have won before me.
ELI: Did it give you a lot of confidence?
CHIN-LUNG: Oh yeah, it gave me a lot of confidence.
ELI: How long have you played baseball? Have you always been a shortstop?
CHIN-LUNG: I’ve played since elementary school. Probably about fifteen years.
ELI: Have you always been a shortstop?
CHIN-LUNG: Yeah, for the most part. I was tried in center field one time but that only lasted a couple of weeks.
ELI: There aren’t a lot of players from
CHIN-LUNG: It is nice and it feels good. Playing here knowing that is fun.
ELI: Do you keep in touch with players from
CHIN-LUNG: Yeah we talk from time to time back home.
ELI: You where number 8, is there any significance to that number?
CHIN-LUNG: No, it is just the number they gave me here in Triple-A. I like number three though if I got to choose. I like single-digit numbers.
ELI: How does the level of competition change as you move up through the system? What is the biggest difference between High-A and Double-A? AA and AAA?
CHIN-LUNG: In High-A, the pitchers throw hard but they don’t have a lot of control. Now, in Triple-A, the pitchers throw hard and have good control. They also have pitches with a lot of movement.
ELI: What was it like being invited to spring training? Did anyone give you some advice? Who?
CHIN-LUNG: I was very happy and excited. I got to see my favorite players. I got to talk to Nomar [Garciaparra], and he is like a hero of mine. And when I got to talk with them, after it was very exciting. All these guys make so much money, but work so hard, so it makes me feel good. I got a chance to work with Juan Pierre a little bit on hitting, which was very nice and exciting. Nomar [Garciaparra] also gave me some good advice at shortstop.
ELI: Do you have a favorite major league stadium?
CHIN-LUNG: I like them all.
ELI: Which jerseys in the major leagues do you find the most attractive? CHIN-LUNG: I like the Dodgers the most. They are classic and haven’t changed in awhile.
CHIN-LUNG: I like the Dodgers the most. They are classic and haven’t changed in awhile.
ELI: Did you have a favorite player growing up?
CHIN-LUNG: I love Ichiro. He has always been my favorite.
ELI: If you could bat against one pitcher, in the past or present, who would it be?
CHIN-LUNG: I think Roger Clemens. He is so good and has been for so long.