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August 7, 2006

The Week in Quotes

July 31-August 6

by John Erhardt

EVOLUTION IS COLD

"I think it's rude. At least call and say something. Pick up the phone and tell me if it's nothing, just a rumor or we're doing something. Then it wouldn't be such a shock to me if it happens."
--Braves center fielder Andruw Jones, on being claimed by a team off waivers (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

"I've never commented on waivers in my 25 years as a general manager, and I never will. That's not the way it is supposed to work. Andruw and I have always had a good relationship. He should know that we would talk if a trade was imminent. But I can't talk about waivers, and I won't."
--Braves GM John Scheurholz

"I know they wouldn't do this with Chipper or Smoltzie. But they aren't in the situation that I'm in. They can say no to a trade."
--Jones

"Waivers were designed to be confidential. No one is supposed to know. As far as I'm concerned, this is a nonstory."
--Braves manager Bobby Cox

"I said if I'm competing with everyone, why shouldn't I claim somebody whether I want him or somebody I'm competing with might want him. They set up waivers to give teams a chance to compete."
--former Mets GM Steve Phillips (New York Times)

"So I claimed guys I was interested in and I thought the Braves might be interested in. If I didn't claim someone and a team we were competing with got him, I'd have been a dead man in New York."
--Phillips, recalling a July that the Mets and Braves were both seeking bullpen arms

"It's a way of gathering information. If six teams claim a player, it's something to put in your ledger for off-season purposes."
--Phillips

SOY UN HUMIDOR

"I walked in and looked at that humidor and said, 'Where were you when I was here?'"
--former Rockies manager Don Baylor, during a return to Coors Field Denver Post)

"I don't know. I know their pitchers here are a lot better, but to have only one home run a game hit here? You can't tell me that all the pitchers in the league are pitching that much better here."
--former Rockie and current Brewers' third baseman Jeff Cirillo, on the humidor

"The thing is, it can lead to some shady stuff going on, like two sets of baseballs. You know, say their team is down late in the game, you know, here are some new baseballs. (Because) the team is the one that governs the baseballs. ... Say their team is down late in the game, well, here is the next batch of baseballs coming in and they're not that ones that were in the humidor."
--Cirillo

"Jeff's always been a very creative thinker. He's always been able to think outside the box."
--Rockies manager Clint Hurdle, on Cirillo's allegations

"He has left the game with the lead three different times. He's pitching every fifth day. He has a bright future. I wish I was his agent."
--Modesto pitching coach Butch Hughes, on 2006 draftee Greg Reynolds

"He thinks he can hit Sandy Koufax. I promise that if Koufax was on the mound, he'd be the first to the bat rack."
--Hughes, on outfielder Matt Miller, who was promoted to Triple-A and started 8-24

PLEASE DON'T TALK ABOUT HITTING WHILE I'M EATING

"I figured it was working, so why change?"
--Philadelphia second baseman Chase Utley, on not talking about his 35-game hitting streak while it was going on (Philadelphia Inquirer)

"I changed my socks. But I kept the same cleats, to be honest with you."
--Utley

"I don't know how to say this. If it was the most important thing, maybe. But it wouldn't have been the most important thing. The most important thing is to win the game."
--Utley, on whether or not he would have felt pressure had the streak reached 40 games

"It's amazing. They were taking the train everywhere. Day games. Just doing it on an everyday basis is tough. You have to have some luck on your side, because some days you feel great at the plate and you can hit four balls on the nose and make four outs. And there are days you feel terrible and you can squib a ball or hit a broken-bat single and there you go, you have a hit. To do it almost two months straight? To me, that's amazing."
--Utley, on DiMaggio's record

"It was a good five-week run. But for the past two weeks we've been playing pretty solid baseball. I hope that's rubbed off on some guys and we're ready to roll."
--Utley

A DISTORTED REALITY IS NOW A NECESSITY TO BE FREE

"We're eight and a half back. Until Game 154, we're not out of it."
--Blue Jays infielder Troy Glaus, (New York Times)

"Odds are against it, I know, but a little ignorance never hurt anyone. Play stupid. Stupid's all right."
--Glaus

"The computer doesn't play the game. Cy Young lost games. Babe Ruth made outs. We're a good 10-, 11-, 12-game run away from being right there, depending on who we're playing as we're going through this stretch."
--Glaus, after being shown the BP Playoff Odds Report

"You know how they say that it ain't over 'til the fat lady sings? Here, it ain't over 'til the big man swings."
--Boston center fielder Coco Crisp, on David Ortiz (Boston Globe)

"He keeps coming through. He'd better not pop up--ever."
--Boston third baseman Mike Lowell, on Ortiz

"FACE THE FACTS OF BEING WHAT YOU ARE, FOR THAT IS WHAT CHANGES WHAT YOU ARE."

"You all think you all know what I'm going to do, and you all don't. Nobody knows. That's the mystique of me."
--Yankees outfielder Gary Sheffield, on ostensibly losing his job to Bobby Abreu, and welcoming him to the team with a hug (South Florida Sun-Sentinel)

"I love that you're in my face and thinking that this can't be done and that this won't be done. But, trust me, I'll be laughing at the end. Watch me."
--Sheffield, who has been working out at first base (New York Times)

"Who is playing first base for us? If he can do it, I can do it."
--Sheffield

"You ask anybody on any team in the league, would they want to be battling me at a position or see how good you are over me? They'd lose every time."
--Sheffield

THE REST

"I may throw six straight forkballs and see what they do, or three straight curveballs, whatever. Hopefully this doesn't go on my bubblegum card, but I want to get stretched out, because when I go back I want to have the ability to give [manager Terry Francona] two or three innings if he needs me."
--currently DL'd Red Sox reliever Keith Foulke, on his rehab assignment (MLB.com)

"Look, I'm a big-market club. It might be to my advantage. But I think it takes away from the season. You don't want to be like hockey. There's something about having your team and winning it with your team. It protects a team from just loading up."
--Mets GM Omar Minaya, on if he supports moving the non-waiver trade deadline later in the season

"Well, I heard that before I got here, and they've been saying that for 100 years, right? So, yeah, there's probably something to it."
--Cubs manager Dusty Baker, on the theory that the Cubs don't win because of all the day games they play (San Diego Union-Tribune)

"If Drayton would have said yes to a trade, it would have been some story. My only regret is that the whole plan [back in the spring] was to get Roger on a mound healthy in October. Now, he will be healthy in October, but probably not on any mound."
--Randy Hendricks, Roger Clemens' agent (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

"Abreu is an impact player. My hope is that he stinks. My concern is that he goes over there for a couple of months and that he's the best player in baseball. I think he has that in him."
--Boston manager Terry Francona, on Bobby Abreu joining the Yankees

"I wanted to make sure the final product was something men would like to wear--and that women would want them to wear."
--Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, on his new fragrance "Driven" (Boston Globe)

"He doesn't have a work ethic. After every start, he didn't run or lift weights. He would sit in the clubhouse and eat ice cream."
--Arthur Rhodes, responding to former teammate Cory Lidle's remarks about not always having his team behind him (New York Post)

"I'd say, 'Man, you're one bad dude.' And I'd shake his hand and show him respect. People don't realize how hard it is to play in the big leagues, and this dude, he goes out and hits 50 home runs. I need to know how he put up that number. It's a long season now and it was a long season then. I'm going to get to know Jimmie Foxx. That's what I owe him."
--Boston DH David Ortiz, on Jimmie Foxx (Boston Herald)

"A curveball that I thought was about 18 inches outside. I think Joe felt I'd been up there long enough."
--Pirates manager Jim Tracy, recalling his first big-league AB, an 11-pitch outing that endied in a strikeout called by umpire Joe West (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

John Erhardt is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
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