Around Baseball: Who will win the Sabathia sweepstakes?
A reporter last week asked White Sox Manager Ozzie Guillen if his team could use the addition of an extra starting pitcher before the July 31 trade deadline.
“I don’t want just another pitcher,” Guillen said in his usual colorful language. “Give me Sabathia.”
Guillen laughed. His club isn’t in the running for free-agent-to-be C.C. Sabathia, but plenty others are.
The Brewers have seemingly surged to the forefront in the Sabathia sweepstakes. There have been multiple reports of the Indians and Brewers eyeing each other up.
“Cleveland is in control of this, not us,” Brewers GM Doug Melvin told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Friday. “They told us they’re talking to other clubs, too. You never know how these things are going to work out.
“I’ve talked to Cleveland. We’ve discussed players. They’re trying to make the best deal they can. At least we’ve got players they’re willing to discuss. But I don’t anticipate anything happening in the next couple of days.”
Sabathia’s next scheduled start is Tuesday in Detroit.
Indians GM Mark Shapiro refused to comment on anything regarding Sabathia during a conference call Friday, including a question about the Indians making a push to sign the left-hander to an extension before the deadline.
Sabathia, who is making $11 million this year, turned down a four-year, $72 million offer before the season and tabled negotiations until after the 2008 campaign.
Guillen actually doesn’t want to be Sabathia’s manager.
“I want to be his agent, or his wife, or his kids, because I know a lot of cake (money) comes from him,” Guillen said.
Cleveland’s Cliff Lee should be named to his first All-Star Game today when All-Star rosters are announced on TBS. “I wondered how he has the kind of record he has,” Guillen said a day after Lee (11-1, 2.26 ERA) tossed eight strong innings against his Sox. “Well, now I know.”
Boston’s Dustin Pedroia had two doubles, a triple and a homer Wednesday night against Tampa Bay, missing the cycle by a mere single.
This would seem like a rarity, but Pedroia is actually the third player to miss the cycle by a single this season according to baseball-reference.com. San Diego’s Adrian Gonzalez and Toronto’s Eric Hinske each missed the cycle by a single on the same day, April 22.
Minnesota Manager Ron Gardenhire, on the Twins beating up the National League to the tune of a baseball-best 14-4 record in
Interleague play: “They’re not a National League team when they come here,” Gardenhire told reporters at the Metrodome. “So, they’re American League teams and we just thumped ‘em. How about that?”
The Twins are on quite a roll and went into Saturday just a game back of the White Sox in the Central Division. Guillen thinks Minnesota is for real. “I don’t know why you guys want to push the Twins out of this thing for the last three years,” Guillen said to reporters. “Because they’re not superstars out there? But I guarantee you they have the best catcher (Joe Mauer), best first baseman (Justin Morneau) out there, and they use to have the best pitcher (Johan Santana) and the best center fielder (Torii Hunter). Watch for the right fielder (Delmon Young). They have a good ball club.” Don’t forget closer Joe Nathan (1.30 ERA, 23-for-25 on save chances.)
With no player having more than 12 home runs going into Saturday, the Twins get it done offensively in another way. As a team Minnesota leads the majors in bunt singles (38) and infield hits (102) and individually 22-year-old leadoff man Carlos Gomez leads the majors in bunt singles (20) and infield hits (34).
A tongue-in-cheek prediction from USA Today columnist Mike Lopresti: “The Colorado Rockies will go from the World Series to the
second-worst record in the National League. Meanwhile, the Cleveland Indians will go from a seven-game loss in the ALCS to finishing 19 games out of first place. Scientists will charge that such disappointments in cold-weather cities are further evidence of global warming.”
The Athletics signed a 16-year-old Michael Inoa from the Dominican to a minor league contract — and a $4.25 million signing bonus. Inoa goes 6-foot-7, 205 pounds. Can we see a birth certificate?
The White Sox faced the AL’s winningest pitcher (Lee), the AL’s reigning Cy Young (Sabathia) and the AL’s ERA leader (Justin Duchscherer) in three straight games last week, going 2-1. ... According to the USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, the Cardinals have a bronze statue of Mark McGwire stored in a St. Louis warehouse. They plan to unveil it if Big Mac is ever inducted into the Hall of Fame. Also McGwire interviewed for the Colorado Rockies hitting coach job two years ago.
Reach Canton Repository sports writer Josh Weir at (330) 580-8426 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org