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December 2, 2013

The Week in Quotes

November 23 - December 1

by Nick Bacarella, Andrew Koo and Chris Mosch


HOT STOVE SEASON CONTINUES

“You always assume it's going to turn out like the guys who were here before us - five World Series, Hall of Fame careers. But how you envision things, sometimes it doesn't work out that way. Not to say that all of a sudden our careers are over, but maybe it hasn't gone the way people had hoped. But I feel like I'm young and can do some things.”
—Former Yankees pitcher Phil Hughes, after signing with the Minnesota Twins on Sunday. The deal is expected to be worth $24 million over three years. (Anthony McCarron, New York Daily News)

“It’s been a challenging process, but we are now seeing tangible evidence that the process is working, thanks to the tireless efforts of Dayton and his Baseball Operations staff. Dayton is not only an outstanding baseball man, but he’s very much a part of our family and one of the top individuals I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.”
—Royals club president David Glass, on Dayton Moore’s place with the team after signing a two-year contract extension. (Bob Dutton, The Kansas City Star)

“It’s no secret that we need guys to give us innings. Our starters didn’t do the job last year, and that piled too many innings on our bullpen. We need more innings.”
—Twins general manager Terry Ryan, explaining his rationale for signing veteran Ricky Nolasco to a four-year, $49 million contract. (Phil Miller, Minneapolis Star Tribune)

“I'm excited about the job, but as far as actually being in the big leagues, it probably won't hit me until I'm standing on the line opening day. It's definitely exciting, and it's bittersweet a little bit because I would have loved for it to be with Tampa Bay, but the opportunity wasn't there.”
—Indians assistant hitting coach Matt Quatraro, on making the move from the Rays' minor-league staff to his new position. (Marc Topkin, Tampa Bay Times)

“Absolutely. I think as we sit here today, we feel good with the group of outfielders that we have. We'll continue to look for opportunities to improve the team and make adjustments as the offseason goes along, but the versatility of the outfielders [makes it possible to carry all three].”
—Indians general manager Chris Antonetti, who is expected to tender an offer to Drew Stubbs, who is arbitration-eligible. If Stubbs agrees to the contract, the Indians will have three potential right fielders: Stubbs, Ryan Raburn, and David Murphy. (Jordan Bastian, MLB.com)

“Right now, there are just a lot of teams that have interest in my services, but we haven't talked about the number of years or the money; everything is preliminary right now.”
—Free agent Carlos Beltran, addressing rumors that the Kansas City Royals have expressed serious interest in signing him. (Cash Kruth, MLB.com)

HALL OF FAME CANDIDATES DISCUSS BEING ON THE BALLOT

“You know what, the fact that I was considered on that many ballots is cool. Whether I believe [I belong] or what I think is irrelevant. I know what I did. At the end of the day, when I think about my career, the thing I always tell people that I wanted when I started was, I wanted to have a career where the 24 guys I suited up with, if their life depended on a win or a loss, who would they want to have the ball? I wanted to be that guy.”
Curt Schilling, on being on the Hall of Fame ballot. (Ian Browne, MLB.com)

“It would be nice, but it's out of my control.”
Roger Clemens, when asked about the Hall of Fame. (Richard Justice, MLB.com)

“The thing about the Hall is, it's a process. There's no protocol unless you have the automatic numbers they like to throw out. If you're a Hall of Famer, you're a Hall of Famer and should be elected when it comes time for you to seek election. Jeff Bagwell was a great ballplayer, a first baseman in the era I played, and undoubtedly put up Hall-of-Fame numbers.”
Andre Dawson, on Jeff Bagwell’s HOF chances. (Brian McTaggart, MLB.com)

“He had 3,000 hits, and that is what they call one of the automatic numbers. There was a time where [if] you had 3,000 hits, you were a shoo-in for the Hall of Fame. I had to wait nine years before I was put in the Hall of Fame. He has the 3,000 hits, so why does he have to wait?”
—Dawson, on Craig Biggio’s HOF chances. (Brian McTaggart, MLB.com)

“I truly feel I got a lot of support. It's a process. I'm very proud of my career. Obviously, I put my body of work up against anybody, I've said before. But you know what? I truly feel that the process is a beautiful thing as well.”
Mike Piazza. (Anthony DiComo, MLB.com)

“When I retired [after the 1995 season], I was 34. If I had kept playing another five years, I may have ended up with 3,000 hits and reached some other milestones and gotten in. I made the decision for my boys, because I wanted to be around. When you do that type of thing, you know what you're doing, you know you're not going to make the Hall of Fame. If I was worried about making the Hall of Fame, I wouldn't have retired.”
Don Mattingly. (Bryan Hoch, MLB.com)

“I wish they would look at my whole career. If they want, why don't they just throw out the last season of my career? I would still have Hall of Fame numbers. I had already 3,000 hits and had 500 home runs. They can use it against me. But it was at the end of my career and it was basically a lack of due diligence on my part and I basically ruined my career over a mistake that really shouldn't have happened. I've put up my numbers, and they aren't going to change.”
Rafael Palmeiro, on voters putting such heavy weight on his 2005 PED suspension. (Tom Singer, MLB.com)

TWITTER

—Along with Padres minor leaguer Cody Decker, notable featured players in “Body Hair” include the Red Sox roster.

THE REST

“I'm an expert in baseball, and I don't even have a job. I'm an expert, more so than a lot of people out there. It should be my career until I'm dead. I should be one of the instructors. I think I've earned it.”
Barry Bonds, on wanting to get back into baseball as a hitting instructor. (Barry M. Bloom, MLB.com)

“I think that was a big deal. I really do. I've never had a GM do that before. Obviously, we know that it's a business and people are going to make the moves that need to be made. But when he let us stick around, it really spoke volumes to the fact that he felt this was too good a group to just go ahead and blow up, that we needed to keep together the pieces that we had and just [acquire complementary players] this offseason.”
—Giants reliever Javier Lopez, on general manager Brian Sabean reaffirming the organization’s interest in retaining him throughout the regular season. Lopez and the Giants officially agreed to a three-year $13 million deal on Tuesday. (Chris Haft, MLB.com)

“I put him there a little bit last year, but he was in survival mode. It was his rookie year, and he was just trying to survive at the Major League level. Now that he's survived, it's time for him to think and play at the same time. I want to keep him away from thinking too much, but think and play at the same time.”
—Rangers manager Ron Washington, on outfielder Leonys Martin understanding his role as a leadoff hitter. (T.R. Sullivan, MLB.com)

“They need some of their young guys to step up. They’ve been waiting on a guy like Nick Hagadone for the last couple of years. A guy like CC Lee has explosive stuff… Bryan Shaw pitched really well, especially late in the season. Cody Allen has lights-out stuff and I really think they have a dark horse in Vinnie Pestano. Last year he hit a bump in the road. It happens, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he were back throwing like the old Vinnie next year. You know he’s going to be working hard this winter… It’s time for the guys that they’ve drafted and traded for, who have the stuff and potential, to step up and pitch well.”
—Angels reliever Joe Smith, on the contributions needed from young players for the Indians, his former team, to improve next season. (Paul Hoynes, Cleveland Plain Dealer)

“My dad told me I wasn’t hurt, and I didn’t know what he meant and he walked away and didn’t talk to me for like a day or two. From then on, I was like all right, I guess that means you should play unless it’s broken. I just decided to play no matter what.”
—Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder, on his desire to play the field as much as he can over the life of his contract. (Stephen Hawkins, Detroit Free Press)

“One of the lessons I learned a long time ago was that you can’t fall in love with your veterans; you can’t do that, that’s not the way to run the railroad. We are not going to be a stand-pat team. That’s just not the way we run the railroad here. That’s probably a losing proposition every year. Every year has to have its own personality. Every year will have a different personality, composition as well as personality.”
—Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino, on his organization’s philosophy for building a perennial contender. (Michael Silverman, Boston Herald)

Nick Bacarella is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Nick's other articles. You can contact Nick 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
Chris Mosch is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Chris's other articles. You can contact Chris by clicking here

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