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December 3, 2007

The Week in Quotes

November 26-December 2

by Alex Carnevale

FAIR WARNING: HANK TALKED A LOT THIS WEEK

"The Twins are aware of it, that I'm not going to wait much longer. And the truth of the matter is, they don't want to be stuck with only one team to deal with. If they're stuck with just Boston, they're going to get a lot less. I'm not going to be played. This is not a game. This is serious business. I'm not going to be played, us against the Red Sox. That's not going to happen."
--Yankees owner Hank Steinbrenner, on his impatience with what's happening in negotiations with the Twins and Yankees over Johan Santana.

"The only way to keep (Santana) from the Red Sox is to get him. You can't hope some other team does it for you."
--Yankees official

"The mistake of trading young pitching. It killed me seeing all those young pitchers we traded back then--(Scott) McGregor, (Jose) Rijo, (Doug) Drabek--who went on to have great careers because we just didn't have the patience. If there's one thing that's going to be different between me and my dad, it's patience."
--Hank Steinbrenner, on the difference between himself and his father.

"I think our offer is the best offer. We have the best young pitchers in the game, even better than Boston."
--Steinbrenner

"As good as the Yankees are and as talented as their young pitchers (Philip Hughes, Joba Chamberlain, Ian Kennedy) are, we'll take our chances against them. If 60 percent of their starts are going to rookies, they're vulnerable. They might get lucky, but after 150 innings with any of those guys, you're going into uncharted waters."
--rival American League executive

"From the earliest days of Walter Johnson until now, there's nothing more valuable in baseball than top starting pitchers. However, you've got to balance that with the potential for an injury. If it wasn't for the injuries, the top pitchers would get more money than anyone. Even more than A-Rod."
--Steinbrenner

IF THEY WANT AN OPT OUT, I WILL OPT OUT

"I don't really care what the Red Sox offer, to tell you the truth. The way I do things is, I make a strong offer, take it or leave it."
--Steinbrenner, on his negotiation strategy. (Kat O'Brien, Newsday)

"Brian [Cashman] has conveyed to them that the owner is getting very irritated."
--Steinbrenner (Bill Madden and Mark Feinsand, New York Daily News)

"They're looking at this as risking it all on Hughes, and whatever Melky gives them beyond his average performance is going to be a bonus. That's why the third player has become so important."
--anonymous Santana-deprived AL executive

"I would think about it. I would very seriously consider putting one of them in the deal."
--former Yankees executive Gene Michael, on trading Hughes or Ian Kennedy (ESPN.com)

"Santana's only 28 and just coming into his prime. I remember consoling Woody when my dad insisted we trade Drabek for (Rick) Rhoden. Rhoden was 32 or 33, but back then that's the way we did things."
--Steinbrenner

HE'S TALKING ABOUT HIS RACING HORSE-WHY, WHAT DID YOU THINK HE WAS TALKING ABOUT?

"All my years working at the farm, I've been waiting to breed a horse like this."
--Hank Steinbrenner, on his horse Majestic Warrior.

"Like I said, I feel I have a duty to let our fans know as much as I can with their team, although sometimes I do go too far. In the respect of being the front guy, that's gonna slow down now. This is my last interview."
--Steinbrenner

"No, I guess what I'm saying is we don't want these huge media circuses that were associated with my father. I mean, he wasn't Jonas Salk."
--Steinbrenner

IN A FEW YEARS, HIDE YOUR DAUGHTERS

"I don't know. I see myself doing this for another 10 years and then my son, George Michael, will be 21. He's already getting ready."
--Steinbrenner

"Last summer, George Michael was watching one of our games at his grandmother's house when she started putting a tape in the TV. 'That's okay, Grandma,' he said. 'We own the rights.'"
--Steinbrenner (Bill Madden, New York Daily News)

WAIT UNTIL HE STARTS COMPARING PAYCHECKS

"It's just nice to see the team move forward. There have been years when things always stayed the way they were. You knew where things would be. Now there is a sense of not knowing what might happen."
--Angels slugger Garret Anderson

"We focused so hard on one player, one position, the last two years and came up empty. If we can't get Cabrera and pass up on Torii Hunter, then we've done a disservice from making ourselves a better team."
--Angels owner Arte Moreno

"As we approach the winter meetings, I think Tony [Reagins, the new Angels GM] is in a good position of strength. And if nothing happens, we're a terrific ballclub. We're a deep club in areas that are important to us. He's always looking to make the club better but he's in a position where I think we can look to evaluate options we have."
--Angels manager Mike Scoscia

"If you're doing something for the short-term, a band-aid, to me, that's not worth going over budget. If you think it's going to make your business better in the long-term, then you make the investment. We don't want a band-aid. We want to get better every year, to compete at the highest level and our focus is to win championships."
--Moreno (Doug Padilla, LA Daily News)

THIS FROM A MAN WHO OFFERED FRANCISCO CORDERO $42 MILLION

"You've got to be careful with free agency. Everybody wants to get caught up in free agency, then the next year you're reading the articles about how bad the signings were. I'm always a little bit cautious with it."
--Brewers GM Doug Melvin (Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel)

"Usually there's a lot of talk that there will be a lot of trades and it seems to disappoint. I don't think it's going to this year. There seems to be a better chance there will be ones this year."
--A's general manger Billy Beane

"Oh, gosh, I can't recall (a free agent market this bad). Then again, I'm not the best guy to ask because I'm not in that market anyway."
--Beane (Jeff Passan, Yahoo! Sports)

A UNION REP TOO VISIBLE? WE'VE NEVER HEARD OF THAT

"I guess, and I hear that. But I mean, that's 12 years ago. You know, 50 percent of the population is divorced, and we've all forgiven our ex-spouses for a whole lot more than being a union rep. I did my job that I was elected to do. I'm not saying I didn't make any mistakes, but I think anybody who knows me, knows that if I'm asked to do something, I'm gonna do it to the best of my ability. I'm not gonna shy away from it."
--Braves pitcher Tom Glavine, on one of the reasons he might have been booed on his return to Turner Field as a Met.

"I guess if there's one mistake that I made during those years as union rep, especially during the strike, it's that I was too visible. I never backed away from an interview. I never backed away from a request if someone wanted to talk to me."
--Glavine

"And I guess in hindsight, that's one of those things that maybe I wouldn't have done so many interviews. But I guess I looked at it as, it's my job as player rep, to try and do these things and represent my players. But maybe I did a little too much."
--Tom Glavine ( David O'Brien, Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

THE REST

"We know that he's almost finished, and, believe me, that's all we know. And all Bud knows."
--anonymous baseball exec, on Bud Selig's knowledge of what's in George Mitchell's report. (Mike Lupica, New York Daily News)

"We still like Murton and think he's an every day big leaguer. Life would be a lot easier if 'Murt' was left-handed."
--Cubs general manager Jim Hendry, on outfielder Matt Murton. (Carrie Muskrat, MLB.com)

"In the end, I don't think Peter will let them do it. Maybe I'm wrong, but we'll see. Let's say this: I think we're going to find out exactly how much autonomy Andy really has."
--anonymous AL executive, on the power of Orioles president Andy MacPhail with regards to trading Erik Bedard

"If the Angels get Cabrera, Oakland might unload everybody. At that point, the Angels would be so loaded, it would be like a signal to Billy that it's time to rebuild."
--anonymous AL general manager (Jayson Stark, ESPN.com)

"The names of players will come out that people will be mad about. Anyone who tries to cheat the system shouldn't be in baseball."
--Arte Moreno

"Let me tell you, a lot of those things, it depends on who does it. A lot of you guys want us to be fan friendly, but if you do shake somebody's hand, then it's taken the wrong way. I just thought he was a young kid. He was just excited."
--Nats manager Manny Acta, on how Lastings Milledge high-fived fans after his first home run.

---

Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.

Related Content:  Journal News,  The Who

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article On the Beat: Grand Ole... (12/02)
<< Previous Column
The Week in Quotes: No... (11/26)
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The Week in Quotes: De... (12/10)
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Prospectus Today: Play... (12/03)

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