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November 12, 2012

The Week in Quotes

November 5-11

by Hudson Belinsky, Jonah Birenbaum, Andrew Koo and Matthew Rocco

PAPI SOUNDS OFF ON FORMER SKIPPER
“No. 1, never bite the hand that feeds you, because in the end that will come back to bite you.  I was one of those players that always showed support for him. In fact, I held a couple of player meetings.”
—Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz, responding to comments made by former manager Bobby Valentine that suggested the 36-year-old “decided not to play anymore” after Boston shipped Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett, and Adrian Gonzalez to the Los Angeles Dodgers in an August blockbuster. (Matt Pepin, Boston Globe)

“No. 2, the day that I returned from the DL, I told him that I was not sure what percentage health-wise I was in, but that I could not be out there without trying to help. When I told him that, I put my career on the side to help him and the team. Being in an incredible amount of pain, I went out there to support them.”
Ortiz

“No. 3, after he went on national TV to say what he said, he sent me a text message trying to tell me that it was the media trying to change things. I did not respond to the message and I said to myself, this guy must have some mental issues or needs medicine or something? I said, I am dealing with someone crazy and I am not going to drive myself crazy, so it is better if I leave it alone.”
Ortiz

"I am a player that has the game in his blood.  In the 10 years that I have (been) in Boston, I have been the soul of the organization and there has never been a second where David Ortiz being able to go on the field and do what he does has decided to stay seated."
—Ortiz (ESPNBoston.com)

METS CUT JASON BAY
“I was as surprised as anyone.”
—Mets manager Terry Collins on the news that New York had negotiated a contract buyout with struggling outfielder Jason Bay. (Andy McCullough, The Star-Ledger)

“I have no regrets in signing with the Mets, other than that I wasn’t able to play to the level that the team, the fans and I all expected and that we weren’t able to win more games. I move on with nothing but an appreciation for the organization and its fans and best wishes to all my teammates there.”
—Bay, who suffered two concussions as a member of the Mets.

“I just think that those concussions take an effect on guys.”
—Collins

“The results weren’t there and we are in a results-oriented business.”
—Mets general manager Sandy Alderson on Bay. (Andrew Keh, The New York Times)

“We have some certainty that now he’s moved on, and now we know what we need to do.”
—Assistant general manager John Ricco

“He’s trying to reclaim his baseball life.”
Joe Urbon, Bay's agent, on the outfielder’s intentions.

NATIONALS BRING DAVEY BACK FOR 2013
“I think everybody’s comfortable with it. I’m comfortable with it. We’ve got some unfinished business. I think we can be better. I know we can be better. So I’m all fired up.”
—Nationals manager Davey Johnson on signing a contract for the 2013 season, which will be his last with Washington. (Amanda Comak, The Washington Times)

“I’m glad I dodged that bullet. That would’ve been the kiss of death.”
—Johnson joked about getting his contract settled before the BBWAA Manager of the Year award is announced. The last time he won the award, he was fired by the Orioles on the same day.

“People say a lot of things. You just let the year play out. If we have another good year he might want to do it again.”
—Nationals bench coach Randy Knorr on Johnson's plan to leave at the end of next season.

“I would love to give managing a shot. I would love it. … There’s only 30 jobs out there and I think I would be perfect for the job, but there’s a lot of other guys out there that can manage, too. I think I’d do a great job with it, but that’s up to Mike and Davey. … I’m not going to do anything different. If they don’t see me in that respect, then that’s what they see. But I think I’m probably the best guy if Davey’s not going to do it anymore.”
—Knorr

ROCKIES HIRE WEISS, WHAT WILL GIAMBI DO?
"We were sitting and discussing very difficult and complex issues as a major-league manager and how we'd deal with players. With the questions coming at him, to watch him think and respond, you'd really think more along the lines of being with a more experienced major-league manager.”
—Rockies senior vice president of major league operations Bill Geivett, on the team’s new manager Walt Weiss. (Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post)

“I was young and impressionable when I came into the league, but still to this day, a lot of how I see the game is through him. He was a really unique competitor. I learned the game from Tony. A lot of the way I see the game is through his eyes. He had a huge impact on me.”
—Weiss, on one of his primary influences, Tony LaRussa.

“Bobby was the best I've ever been around in the game at creating loyalty amongst the club — nobody better. You don't walk in on Day One and have that kind of impact like Bobby Cox, obviously. But there is a blueprint for me there on how to deal with players, and how to get that love and respect. And how to get players to care for each other.”
—Weiss, on another influence, Bobby Cox.

"I don't know what I am going to do yet. I just need a couple of days to digest everything. I know Walt is a hard-nosed guy, and have heard nothing but great things about him. We will just kind of see where it goes from here."
Jason Giambi, who had vied for the managerial position. (Troy E. Renck, The Denver Post)

DIAMONDBACKS WELCOME HEATH BELL
“I don't know much about him. I've heard little things about him. You can hear things, and they can be completely wrong. I'm curious.”
—Starter Ian Kennedy, on new reliever Heath Bell. Bell introduced himself to the team at a charity golf tournament with a colorful outfit. (Jesse Sanchez, MLB.com)

“I think it was a little bit of a culture shock and it just didn't work. It was well-known that he and his manager didn't see eye to eye, but we think that a change of scenery will be good for him. He's returning to the NL West, where he has always had success.”
—President Derrick Hall, on Bell’s struggles with Miami.

“I'll have to get myself a Diamondbacks color. What can I say? I listen to my wife and she puts out what I am supposed to wear that day because, apparently, I can't match.”
—Bell

JEFF KENT ELIMINATED ON SURVIVOR
“Part of the reason I did the show was to pull up the shades and let people see what I'm really like. I was only antisocial in baseball because of having to deal with jerks like you.”
—Retired second baseman Jeff Kent, on the persona he portrayed for eight weeks on Survivor. (T.J. Simers, Los Angeles Times)

“You know what pisses me off is that I think I've made about 60 million dollars playing baseball and I want this frickin' million dollars in this game and it's not even a million bucks it's 600 grand by the time Obama takes it.”
—Kent, after his elimination.

“I'm a Game 7 World Series loser. You know, I've played in the biggest games in the world and the worst games in the world. But this just sucks.”
—Kent, still ranting.

TWITTER

—Now, wouldn’t that be something? (Ken Rosenthal, @Ken_Rosenthal, FOX Sports)

—Still no word on whether or not the Nationals will shut Solis down after 160 IP. (Adam Kilgore, @AdamKilgoreWP, The Washington Post)

THE REST
“Being away from my family a lot this year was really, really rough. I was very surprised when I found out the Dodgers called last week.”
—New Dodgers hitting coach Mark McGwire, who was considering retirement until Los Angeles called. (Mark Saxon, ESPNLosAngeles.com)

“If this pitcher pitched in Japan, this would have been a much different posting fee.”
Scott Boras, on the Dodgers’ winning bid for Ryu Hyun-Jin’s negotiation rights. (Dylan Hernandez, Los Angeles Times)

“It's always nice when your peers recognize the work that you and the entire front office have done. I see this as an organizational award, not an individual award.”
—Athletics manager Billy Beane, after his peers voted him Sporting News' MLB Executive of the Year. (Susan Slusser, SFGate.com)

Jonah Birenbaum is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Jonah's other articles. You can contact Jonah by clicking here
Andrew Koo is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Andrew's other articles. You can contact Andrew by clicking here

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