Category Archives: News

Saying Goodbye to Derek Jeter

Derek Jeter

By now, everyone that watches the great sport of baseball knows that The Captain, Derek Jeter, will be retiring at the end of the season. With the postseason out of the picture for the New York Yankees, that means time is extremely limited for fans to catch him wearing pinstripes on a Major League Baseball field (Old Timer’s Day excluded). With his last hooray in baseball just days away at this point, the tributes are becoming for chilling.

As a fan of the Atlanta Braves, I have grown up with the anti-New York mentality (thanks Jim Leyritz), but I can’t feel anything about Jeter’s retirement and contribution to the game except appreciation. The first-ballot Hall of Famer won’t be the first player inducted with 100 percent of the vote, but that shouldn’t matter anyway. Whatever it is that you may call him, whether it be No. 2, Captain, or Jetah, the only thing that should matter is he was always the face of the sport and could be trusted to not taint the great history of the sport like others during this era.

With only a handful of games left in his career, turn on the television, tune in, and watch his greatness, because there will never be another player like him.

Watch the recently released Derek Jeter commercial and feel the chills run up your spine.

One more thing. If you are a fan of his and want a chance to win one of three autographed retirement bats, order an unsigned bat beginning today through Sept. 21 and be entered in the drawing. Good luck!

Find the Golden Ticket at SteinerSports.com!

Worst Spring Training Injuries of 2014

We are just a few weeks away from the real baseball season beginning and fans around the country are already reeling and quickly turning away from their television sets from the sight of injuries. One team – a perennial World Series candidate – has lost two starting pitchers, and several other teams have lost key players from their lineups and rotations. What are the worst spring training injuries thus far?

Brandon Beachy and Kris Medlen – Atlanta Braves

The defending National League East champions were believed to be the favorites by many pundits to win the NL pennant this season. They were supposed to have their young rotation led by Medlen and Beachy, but both left a start early last week with pain in their throwing arm. Medlen will have his second Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2014 season. Beachy has been shut down already after barely getting his fastballs to the mid-80s. Add in the fact the Mike Minor will miss the start of the season and the Braves could be on their way to a terrible April. They signed Ervin Santana this week and had already re-signed Freddy Garcia and signed Gavin Floyd in the offseason, but in the case of Floyd, he is coming off TJ surgery of his own.

Luke Hochevar – Kansas City Royals

With Kansas City looking to get back to the promise land, they knew that Hochevar was going to be a big part of their bullpen. Instead, he will have Tommy John surgery himself and will miss the season. Last year – his first as a reliever – Hochevar was lights out, going 5-2 with a 1.92 ERA. He will be hard to replace and without many options left in free agency, so they will need to look from within the organization for help.

Andy Dirks – Detroit Tigers

The potential starting left fielder for the Tigers this season will miss 12 weeks (8 weeks of regular season) because of lower back surgery. Dirks isn’t known as a player that will light you up, but he is a reliable bat and a steady fielder. The Tigers have options as to who can replace him, as they signed Rajai Davis in the offseason and also have three other players who could get time: Trevor Crowe, Ezequiel  Carrera and Steve Lombardozzi.

 

Alex Rodriguez Suspended for 2014 Season

After months of waiting, a federal prosecutor ruled that Alex Rodriguez will be suspended for 162 games and will not be allowed to participate in the postseason should the New York Yankees qualify. Rodriguez was originally suspended during the summer along with 12 other Major League Baseball players, but was the only one to fight back in what turned out to be an ugly fight between the former MVP, MLB and the Yankees.

Rodriguez was originally suspended for 211 games. Those games broke down to 50  for a performance enhancing drug violation and another 161 for impeding the MLB investigation. Despite being reduced, the suspension is still the longest in the history of the sport for a PED offense, but the 38-year-old is not going down with a fight. In a statement released on behalf of Rodriguez through Ron Berkowitz, he said:

“The number of games sadly comes as no surprise, as the deck has been stacked against me from day one. This is one man’s decision, that was not put before a fair and impartial jury, does not involve me having failed a single drug test, is at odds with the facts and is inconsistent with the terms of the Joint Drug Agreement and the Basic Agreement, and relies on testimony and documents that would never have been allowed in any court in the United States because they are false and wholly unreliable. This injustice is MLB’s first step toward abolishing guaranteed contracts in the 2016 bargaining round, instituting lifetime bans for single violations of drug policy, and further insulating its corrupt investigative program from any variety defense by accused players, or any variety of objective review.

I have been clear that I did not use performance enhancing substances as alleged in the notice of discipline, or violate the Basic Agreement or the Joint Drug Agreement in any manner, and in order to prove it I will take this fight to federal court. I am confident that when a Federal Judge reviews the entirety of the record, the hearsay testimony of a criminal whose own records demonstrate that he dealt drugs to minors, and the lack of credible evidence put forth by MLB, that the judge will find that the panel blatantly disregarded the law and facts, and will overturn the suspension. No player should have to go through what I have been dealing with, and I am exhausting all options to ensure not only that I get justice, but that players’ contracts and rights are protected through the next round of bargaining, and that the MLB investigation and arbitration process cannot be used against others in the future the way it is currently being used to unjustly punish me.

I will continue to work hard to get back on the field and help the Yankees achieve the ultimate goal of winning another championship. I want to sincerely thank my family, all of my friends, and of course the fans and many of my fellow MLB players for the incredible support I received throughout this entire ordeal.”

If Rodriguez’s attempt to stop the suspension fails, it may signal the end of his professional career. Injuries have caused many problems for him in the past several years and his once-Hall of Fame-worthy play has been diminished in the process. Let’s not forget that the Yankees would likely love nothing better than rid themselves of the $61 million they owe him between 2015 and 2017. At least they will be able to save $25 million this season.

As someone who loves the sport of baseball, seeing this whole situation unravel is upsetting. What isn’t upsetting is seeing those that continue to try and get a leg up on the competition get caught and reprimanded. Should Rodriguez never play again on a MLB field, I won’t miss him and doubt many will.