March 21, 2005
The Week in Quotes
March 14-20TOO MANY SECRETS
"I'm not here to talk about my past."
"I'm not going to go into my past."
"What I will not do, however, is participate in naming names and implicating my friends and teammates. I retired from baseball four years ago. I live a quiet life with my wife and children. I have always been a team player. I have never been a person who spread rumors or said things about teammates that could hurt them. I do not sit in judgment of other players, whether it deals with their sexual preference, their marital problems, or other personal habits, including whether or not they use chemical substances. That has never been my style, and I do not intend to change this just because the cameras are turned on."
"Nor do I intend to dignify Mr. Canseco's book. It should be enough that you consider the source of the statements in the book, and that many inconsistencies and contradictions have already been raised."
"He had the opportunity to say something, and it looked like he had been coached in the other direction. It surprised me. That's exactly what I'm saying."
"The shame of it is [McGwire] wouldn't even be up there if Canseco wasn't trying to sell a book."
"Any player who tests positive, you can count on it, is gone."
"I heard somebody on the radio say, 'If only Kenesaw Mountain Landis were alive.' If he were, he wouldn't have a union to deal with. This is not 1937."
TWO MORE RETIREES IN TAMPA
"Everyone's kind of dumbfounded today. We just lost our cleanup hitter and we don't know what happened. It's kind of a weird situation. It's a zoo around here today."
"When your body doesn't allow you to play, there is nothing you can do."
"My back, my legs were not the same, my eyes. I couldn't play no more. I have no excuses. I did it for 17 good years and have no complaints. It's time for me to move on."
"I knew my body was not going to allow it. In the morning you feel sore. You try to go out there and push yourself one more time, but I knew I was done."
"I don't want to be embarrassed on the field. I don't want to embarrass my teammates, Chuck [LaMar], Lou [Piniella]. I don't want to do that. They're great people and they deserve to have somebody else at second base. They have some good young talent here. Hopefully, they can go out and do their job."
"Baseball will miss one of the best players I've ever seen. To me, in his time, he was the best player besides Barry Bonds to play the game. Good for him. He will leave with his head up all the way straight to the Hall of Fame."
"It was a privilege to play with him and manage him. He was my teammate and my player and a good friend. I know his back was bothering him. He was worried about the 3,000 hits, but I talked to him and told him, 'You don't need the 3,000 hits. You are going to be a Hall of Famer no matter what.'"
"Our team is not as deep as it has been in a couple of years, as far as the long ball, but we're going to generate enough offense. We have guys who can hit home runs, but we're not contingent on winning or losing with the home run. There's other things we can do to score runs."
"He helped lead the Twins to three straight division titles. He's got a lot of upside. And it's hard to win when you don't have a shortstop who can catch the ball. If you don't have a shortstop, your pitching staff isn't going to be any good."
"We've got great players everywhere. Lots of teams lose a big guy or two and it's tough. You take three or four big guys away from us and we've got more where they came from. I definitely think so."
"In the eighth spot, I hit last year with a lot of runners on base. If the first pitch is there, I want to be aggressive and try to make good contact."
"Those opportunities when you have a runner on, you have to take advantage of them. The pitcher comes up next, and it's likely he's going to make an out."
"This organization has drafted, signed and developed a winning major-league player in Lance Berkman. And today we have signed him to a long-term commitment that will keep him with the Astros for six seasons, including the 2005 season. That's a tremendous accomplishment for the organization to have Lance on contract this long."
"I firmly believe that there are two ingredients that are important to sustain success at the major-league level. The first is a strong player development and scouting system that produces winning major-league players. The second is the ability of an organization to retain those players once they are on the brink of free agency. Today we're here to announce that we've achieved those two objectives."
WHEN YOU DO THINGS RIGHT, PEOPLE WON'T BE SURE YOU'VE DONE ANYTHING AT ALL
"Everybody has a voice. Everybody is entitled to their opinion. I think there are a lot of guys who try to make a living off analyzing guys like Mark Prior and Kerry Wood. I don't know what the agendas are and I really don't care. We have a job to do here."
"Really the proof is going to be in what happens through the years-not what has happened this spring or last spring or any other time. I'm looking at this long-term, and you hope Mark has a long and fruitful career."
"There are not many people with perfect mechanics."
"If you think you're just going to change them instantly, it's almost impossible. There are ways to do it, and you do it slowly. I think we have a pretty good grip on what we need to do."
"It's going to be interesting to see who will step up and [lead the team]. It could be a Jack [Wilson]. It could be a [Ty] Wigginton. It's got to be someone who's going to be there 162 days -- a guy who's been around and could step up a little bit and lead the team."
"If Lee Smith can't get in with 478 saves, I ain't getting in with 246."
"Once an ass, always an ass."
"Yes, he offended everyone in the Bay Area."
"He looks pretty good to me. His back looks bigger."
"I read a lot of Socrates over the winter. Don't print that. You'll ruin my reputation."
"I'm not smart, but I can lift heavy things."
"It's a sad day, it really is. It signifies a couple of things, too, that this team is going in a different direction. I think hopefully a winning one."