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March 18, 2002

The Week in Quotes

March 4-17

by Derek Zumsteg

NOOOOOOOOOOO

"He would always say, `Why are you letting that guy throw the pitch right down the middle?' It didn't matter if I got three hits. If I let one go right down the middle, he'd just want to go home. It bugged him the worst."
--Nick Johnson, Yankees infielder, on his grandfather

"There are some things I want to tinker with. I don't want to let that first pitch go by that much anymore."
--Johnson

"Not too many people know this, but I played 40 straight games in the outfield with the [Atlantic League independent club] Newark Bears. I played the last six or seven out in center field, and did not make any errors at all. I think I was second or third in the league in assists when the White Sox actually acquired me. I definitely feel comfortable out there; I'm extremely comfortable playing center field."
--Jose Canseco, Expos outfielder

"That's what's been missing here: speed. I love speed. I love that more than any other variable in an offense."
--Dusty Baker, Giants manager

JAWING

"I spoke to him after that. He hit a three-run home run but a groundball would have been bigger at that point of the game. We want a minimum of results. The minimum in that situation was a groundball. We just can't accept not putting the ball in play."
--Buck Martinez, Blue Jays manager, on a Vernon Wells ground-out with runners on after earlier hitting a 3-run home run in a 4-3 loss.

"When I first met J.P. I thought, 'Smooth cat -- smooth lookin' cat.' He looks like he was a pimp back in his day. He's a good dude."
--Orlando Hudson, Blue Jays infielder, on new GM J.P. Ricciardi

"Probably when he was crawling around on his knees, I was playing baseball, unless he's as old as I am -- he probably is,"
--Rickey Henderson, Red Sox outfielder, on Yankee pitcher Orlando Hernandez's reaction to Rickey taking time to enjoy watching his own home run

THOSE CRAZY OWNERS

"Let's say you've got a $10 million player and you pay him $5 million and you defer $5 million. He still costs you $10 million. It just means you borrowed from the player instead of the bank. How we borrow our money is our business."
--Jerry McMorris, Rockies co-owner, on the Rockies disputed payroll valuation

"The reason it wasn't enforced for a while was the economic fallout from the 1995 strike. I wrote this rule in 1975. I'm the father of the rule. The clubs have known for a long time that I was going to enforce it."
--Bud Selig, Commissioner, on the announcement that he would enforce the 60/40 debt rule, which would have affected his Brewers until this year

MORE LEARNING

"It's really great foresight by Rick to analyze pitchers when they're healthy. A lot of times, someone gets hurt and then comes here to analyze their mechanics, but the truth is, we never see them when they're throwing well."
--Dr. Glenn Flesig, director of research, American Sports Medicine Institute, on Athletics pitching coach Rick Peterson

"It was really cool. I didn't know what to expect, but you can evaluate your mechanics so in-depth, it will let you know if your arm is about to fall off."
--Tim Hudson, Athletics pitcher

NOT LEARNING

"I'll try sometimes. But then I just have to swing."
--Cristian Guzman, Twins infielder, on trying plate discipline

"No, he's pretty dangerous swinging the bat. He hits the ball in the gap and flies around the bases. I swear, he's so fast going from first to third, sometimes it looks like he cuts across the infield. So I want him to be aggressive. He's a young kid. I want him to swing the bat."
--Ron Gardenhire, Twins manager, on trying to improve Guzman's patience

"There's only so many guys that can get three outs for you, the last three outs. He knows how to do it."
--Don Baylor, Cubs manager, on retired pitcher Jeff Shaw

THE REST

"But I'm only 32 in the Dominican Republic."
--Tim Raines Sr., Marlins outfielder, on his advanced (42) age

"I just don't see any purpose to bringing in people who are proven troublemakers. I don't think the fans fully understand how long the season is and how much time the players spend together. If you have a problem in the clubhouse, it does affect performance on the field. I'm convinced of that."
--Howard Lincoln, Mariners CEO

"The way we look at it, Boston messed up its situation so bad, and they're trying to take one of our best people to alleviate their problem and create one here. The timing of it was so poor on the Red Sox's part. It put us in a real difficult situation."
--Billy Beane, A's general manager, on denying the Red Sox an interview with bench coach Ken Macha

"They're just making sure there's no distinct edge to the hitter. I can understand that, but I've been on top of the plate my whole career. I personally wear my elbow pad because if I get hit in the wrong place on my arm, it's going to break because it's been hit so many times."
--Mo Vaughn, Mets infielder, on efforts to prevent batter armor

"When you have to make tough decisions a lot of times they don't sit well with every single person, but I pride myself with being honest and straightforward, and that will not change. I don't have the capabilities to remember a bunch of lies. If I start lying, I'm going to have to remember a bunch of stuff and I'll get confused."
--Grady Little, Red Sox manager

If you would like to submit a quote, please email Derek and be sure to include both the quote itself and a URL pointing to the quote.

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