With Jason Bay out for most of the weekend and Rocco Baldelli nursing a sore ankle, the Red Sox moved Kevin Youkilis to left field for a game or two. Youkilis was lifted for a defensive replacement, but managed an assist – throwing out Derek Jeter at second base. [FoxSports]
Arizona placed outfielder Justin Upton on the DL with an oblique strain suffered, oddly, while running the bases. (Well, it could have happened earlier, but he noticed it running the bases…) Taking his roster spot is long time minor leaguer, Trent Oeltjen – an Aussie Olympian – who brings some speed, but not much power to the Snakes. Hitting .300 in Reno, it translates to about .250 with a few walks, some steals and maybe a triple or two more than most players… [ESPN]
The Mets have decided that Bobby Parnell will replace the injured Jonathan Niese in the rotation. Parnell throws HARD – 98 MPH or so – so I might have to actually watch a Mets game (when they aren’t playing the Marlins or Cubs). [ESPN]
The Yankees acquired Chad Gaudin from the Padres for either cash or a player to be named later… With San Diego acquiring a number of prospects at the trading deadline, Gaudin became expendable. He’ll be a long reliever or fifth starter option in the Bronx. Let me ask you this… How good is any pitcher with a 5.13 ERA pitching in the run scarce environment in San Diego? [SI]
Two Washington Nationals minor leaguers, both at AA Harrisburg, were suspended 50 games for testing positive for amphetamines. Ofilio Castro and Edgardo Baez will miss most of the rest of the season. [FoxSports]
Then, the Nationals set infielder Anderson Hernandez to the Mets for minor leaguer Greg Veloz. Neither is a prospect, and I’ve watched Hernandez – he’s a glove in search of hitting skills.
Baseball card collectors wanting official MLB stuff will now have fewer options… MLB signed an exclusive multi-year deal with Topps Trading Cards Co., which (if you didn’t know) is now run by Michael Eisner. Yeah – that Michael Eisner. Upper Deck still has a deal with the MLB Players Association, which means that they can make cards, but cannot use team logos and what not. I’ve collected pretty much only Topps cards for years, but I will admit the last 15 years or so have been crazy with so many possible brands. Now, it should be easier for kids to figure out what to buy. [SI]
I mention this because my friend, Andy Finch, is a professor at Vanderbilt… Mike Minor, Commodore grad and seventh overall pick in the 2009 draft, signed a contract with Atlanta yesterday. This summer, we saw two other Vandy alums playing in Peoria – so maybe we can find this guy in a minor league game next summer. [ESPN]
Speaking of friends… One of the best people I know, Steve Dubin, walked away from a five car accident yesterday morning. He was on the turnpike heading to the office when he had to stop for cars who had slowed for a flash rain. He stopped, but the van behind him did not and plowed into him at about 65 MPH. The impact threw Steve and his car across three lanes of traffic, where he bounced off of three other cars. God and Hyundai engineering shined down on Steve – he got out of his car and, not knowing what to do, began taking pictures of the mess. The interior – including two car seats, which thankfully were empty – was intact. The exterior, however, was crushed like a discarded beer can.
I’ve known Steve for about a decade, our kids will probably date in high school, and his wife is a sweetheart. But I feel especially lucky to still have the big lug around. He was hauled to a hospital, checked out okay, and given pain killers to deal with the ache of getting whalloped the way Albert Pujols hits belt-high fastballs. That seems reason enough to think today will be a good day no matter what else happens.
Welcome Back! Doug Waechter returns from the DL for the Royals, and they need him… Royal reliever Juan Cruz was placed on the DL with a strained right shoulder. The Yankees signeed Russ Ortiz to a minor league contract. He’s Chad Gaudin, only older and used to be good.
Hurry Back! Other than Cruz, Rocco Baldelli (mentioned above) is on the DL with his ankle contusion.