Behind my house there is a baseball diamond for the local high school. Twice this week, the lights have been on and kids have been playing baseball. It's a beautiful sight. Oh,and you're not done with Jim Hendry and Gary Hughes stories. Sorry.
- In case you aren't sick of PED talk, Ryan Braun's name has popped up in the records of the Miami-area clinic that named Alex Rodriguez, Gio Gonzalez and others this past week. Braun claims he only hired Anthony Bosch as a consultant to fight his positive test from the past year. Read the story yourself and make up your own mind.
- Just over twenty years ago, a young scout named Jim Hendry was told by his boss, Marlins scouting director Gary Hughes, that he could spend $10,000 on signing bonuses and that he could spend it on whomever he wanted to. He could give it all to one player or split it among several. So he got in a bit of trouble when he gave one player $15,000 instead. The Marlins grudgingly paid the prospect the extra money, and now twenty years later that prospect, Mike Redmond, is their new manager. Ken Rosenthal has the tale.
- Mike Curto, the voice of the Tacoma Raniers, gives a glimpse into what life is like in the Pacific Coast League.
- Sandy Alderson has the Mets sticking to their rebuilding plan, according to Tyler Kepner in the New York Times. One part of the plan that Alderson isn't involved with is to put a casino in the Citi Field parking lot. Uh-huh. I think they'd have a better chance getting the Nationals to trade them Bryce Harper for Ruben Tejada.
- Slate.com has a quick story about a baseball found on the Shiloh battlefield.
- Troy Renck is trying to be optimistic, so he thinks that pitching health and defense is the key to an improved Rockies team this season. I think the key would be if Troy Tulowitzki would come back healthy and hit about 125 home runs or so. That's what it might take.
- The Tigers have to be thinking about trading Max Scherzer after the 2013 season, writes Josh Slagter of mlive.com. Might want to give Jed Hoyer a call. Just saying.
- The Indians have signed Omir Santos and Jeremy Hermidia to minor-league deals.
- Manny Ramirez is talking with a team about playing in Taiwan this season.
- Ken Rosenthal thinks the Astros could be historically bad this season, but they're going about rebuilding in the right way. But this season could be "indefensibly ugly." To add to that, Rosenthal is reporting that the Astros have Bud Norris on the trade block.
- Julio Lugo decided to retire. Since he didn't actually play in 2012, I think that decision had already been made for him.
- Jurickson Profar has bowed out of the World Baseball Classic to concentrate on making the Rangers out of Spring Training. Bad news for my Netherlands.
- The Reds have a lot riding on Aroldis Chapman's transition from reliever to starter, writes Mark Sheldon of mlb.com. So does the rest of the NL Central, actually.
- The Washington Nationals want Lee County to spend $33.6 million before they'll move their spring training from Viera to Ft. Myers. The county says that's not happening, but they're still trying to negotiate a better deal.
- In the first of a two-part series, the Los Angeles Times' Mike DiGiovanna takes a look at Josh Hamilton's life and demons. Part two, on how signing Hamilton is risky beyond his biography, should be up by the time you read this as well.
- Chris Carpenter's injury may open the door for either Shelby Miller or Trevor Rosenthal. I really hate the Cardinals farm system right now. And by hate I mean I wish it was the Cubs system.
- Giants third base coach Tim Flannery isn't going to quit his day job, but he has quite a career in music on the side. I know he's played a few concerts in my neck of the woods this off-season.
- Finally, the Kansas City Royals have a new slogan this year: "Come To Play." Really? That's the best they could do? They could at least come up with "Come and drink a lot to forget that we traded Wil Myers for James Shields."
The Iowa Hawkeyes Wrestling Team is ranked #2 in the nation. Looks like an off year.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, because I'm hoping my daughter will be over her cold by then, Buster.
(I would so much rather have a cold myself than my daughter. Much less aggravating.)