November 6, 2006
The Week in Quotes
October 30-November 6"BRIAN, YOU'LL ALWAYS BE MY FIRST FIELDING COACH. BUT I'M IN LOVE WITH A MAN NAMED BELL."
"Then I got traded to Arizona and all of a sudden, (and) now I'm with Jay Bell. He would keep telling me the same things Brian Butterfield was telling me and adding some things about his way, so now I'm feeling more comfortable playing second base."
"I hope to cut that down by eight to ten next year. I can think of ten of those 13 right now that were just a lack of concentration. The ball would go into my glove and I got kind of lackadaisical."
"Oh man, defense. It does feel good when you hit one now and then, though. I hope to hit a couple more next year."
THAT IS NO CONSOLATION TO YOUR FANTASY OWNERS THERE CHAVY
"I knew I could impact the game defensively. I knew I had to because offensively I was not able to produce."
"This was the best year I've played defensively. That's why I felt comfortable."
MANNY AND LOWELL FOR A-ROD-TOO SOON?
"He's been on the block for, what, five years? My answer is it's highly unlikely he'll be dealt, but what we'll see in the weeks ahead is how motivated is he to get out of Boston and how motivated the Red Sox are to make it happen. Did he ask for a trade? And if he did, has he changed his mind yet?"
"Don't get me wrong. Everybody wants his bat. But now he's getting up there in age, he's breaking down, the money, the attitude. In the NL, he's an adventure defensively."
"It takes a special team. The Red Sox have been that. They're really perfect for Manny because they have been able to tolerate everything that comes with it, and he's been phenomenal for them."
MAYBE THEY SHOULD TRADE FOR PROSPECTS-THAT WORKED OUT SO WELL LAST OFFSEASON
"It sounds complicated. The Red Sox would have to have another big hitter in place in order to entertain it. They would never get full value, so they'd have to consider it a salary dump and use the money in other areas or get pitching or prospects in return."
"A huge problem is the contract. Even though there's a couple of years left, the money is huge. The Red Sox would probably have to eat some."
OUR PHILANTHROPY REALLY SHOWED HIM
"They said they could no longer participate. I was shocked. This is an organization that is supposedly trying to rebuild things with the community and helping out with charities, and they backed out. That's pretty sad."
"We made the decision that instead of writing a check to Toby Hall's event, we would contribute directly to the charities. We wanted to provide the financial assistance that we would have through sponsoring the lane."
"I still live here and want to do something to help the community. Hopefully this gets bigger and bigger every year."
HEY, IF HEATH SHULER CAN RUN FOR CONGRESS…THE MONEY WOULD BE THE SAME
"I'm biased, because I think the world of him, but he's the perfect guy to do it. He's excited about baseball. He loves to give back. He's such a great communicator. They're going to walk away thinking, 'Wow, what a special guy. That's what major-league baseball players are like.' "
"And I don't have to pay for it."
IN CASE YOU FORGOT, ROBBIE ALOMAR SPIT ON THIS GUY
"Not at all. There was nothing going on on the field."
An umpire normally doesn't go out and inspect the pitcher unless he is asked to by the opposing manager."
"I'm not sure."
"Umpires can initiate an inspection if they have good reason to believe there is something going on."
WHY DO I FEEL LIKE ONE OF LA RUSSA'S ANIMAL RESCUE BUDDIES IS GOING TO CUT OFF HIRSHBECK'S FINGER NOW
"He said, 'We think he's got something on his hand." I said: 'You guys have to formally ask us to look at it. We're not going to go out there and start searching the guy.' But Tony never asked us."
"We don't go looking for those things. They have to ask us."
"That's where you check. They can't say, 'We think he has something somewhere,' and we go out and look at his glove, his shirt, his pockets."
HE MIGHT AS WELL BE TALKING ABOUT STEROIDS
"I've talked to all the umpires about it. They know what they're supposed to do. I don't have a complaint. Tony La Russa is not a shrinking violet. He can be very confrontational. I thought he handled it well. I'm satisfied that the situation was handled properly."
THEN AGAIN WE ALSO PANNED THE STEVE FINLEY ACQUISITION, AND LOOK HOW WELL HE TURNED OUT
"When Brian signed him to that contract, I wondered, 'How long will he last?'... well, it turned out to be a great signing because it seems he's gotten better."
"Everyone talks about his glove, but the guy can hit, too--he puts the ball in play."
OFFSEASON OF A THOUSAND SURPRISES
"It was a surprise to me. I was literally shocked."
"When I returned the phone call, I just basically said, 'I don't deal with agents with my employees. We won't be talking anymore.'"
"The bottom line is I just don't feel comfortable negotiating at times. I don't want to negotiate on my own, and that's strictly it."
IN THIS CASE, NOT THAT LUCKY
"I was completely taken by surprise. I don't want to retire. I'm getting older, but I'm not getting old. I like the game. I've stuck to it for 41 years. I've been lucky through the years."
"You're here as long as I'm here."
"I talked to a club already and I have a chance of going there, but until it happens I don't count that chicken."
"I'll be looking forward to the future. I have mixed emotions and I don't know why I was let go. We've been through an awful lot."
"Thank God I have friends in the business."
IT'S A WILD WORLD
"I don't want to gloat about someone being arrested, but it seems like the [business of representing] Cuban defectors has turned into a smuggling business."
"Although this case involves a Beverly Hills sports agent and talented baseball players, it is remarkably similar to the human smuggling operations."
WE'RE ALSO NOT RULING OUT SHANGHAI, HONG KONG, OR IRELAND, BECAUSE WE'VE HEARD THERE'S A POT OF GOLD THERE
"We've been candid with teams about where we would want to go, or more importantly where we would not want to go. And you've probably seen the response to that."
"There are a lot of holes in the system, so some teams can cheat. That's not a fair system. If you have a good connection to the team, you can do anything you want to. Also, the Japanese player cannot choose the team."
"Two things there. The money is ridiculous and Scott Boras represents him."
"Nomo was a very unique situation, and back then we were all learning about the cultural differences and problems with communication. I think since then teams are better able to deal with it, but for the pitcher himself, there's still a very tough process in being assimilated into a new culture, a new language, and a new way of doing things."
ASK HIM ANYTHING ABOUT AMERICAN IDOL…
"Doesn't that sound like fun. Joint action is theoretically [good] but what does that mean? In American baseball, if the runner and the ball arrive at the base at the same time, the tie goes to the fielder. Who breaks a tie if there is a disagreement over policy between the SEC and FSA?"
"We looked ahead to this year's free agent market when we made those moves, and we're looking ahead to next year's already. We knew what was going or not going to be available, so maybe we paid a little more, but I think what we did is we established that Toronto is a good place to play baseball, and by finishing second in a tough division, we established ourselves as a team that's going to contend. I think it's really going to help us moving forward."
"He was night and day. That is just an amazing difference."
"The technology now is just amazing. From a kid who grew up in the '40s listing to the St. Louis Cardinals radio broadcasts from Harry Caray on an old Philco, all I can say is, I'm just glad I lived this long. I go to the games and stay about five innings, then retire to my loft library at home about five miles away from the field, and finish off the game listening to the broadcast on the computer while following every pitch on MLB.com."
"I feel like I have an idea about what we can do to keep the A's from beating us so much."
"He was an extraordinarily generous person, especially with children, also with his co-workers."
Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus. You can reach Alex by clicking here.