“I love my teammates here, but I’m waiting to be traded. I should have been traded two months ago.”
—Shea Hillenbrand, in one of his many interviews (CBC Sports).
“They are making me feel like I did something wrong.”
–Hillenbrand, on the reaction of Blue Jays management to the days he took off to adopt a child.
“Not one person from the front office has even come up to congratulate me. It’s all the little people like you guys. But nobody from higher up. That’s a disgrace.”
“They wonder why they are not winning. It’s the atmosphere.”
–Hillenbrand. The Blue Jays entered Wednesday’s game in third place in the AL East with a 52-41 record.
“This is a sinking ship.”
–written by Hillenbrand on the clubhouse chalkboard.
WE REALLY HOPE THIS DOESN’T AFFECT HIS TRADE VALUE, AND…
“The guy was calling me horrible names, to try to get me to punch him, to fight him. He was in my face for five minutes straight wanting me to punch him.”
“He was claiming that I’m a cancer to my teammates, that I’m a coward. He said that my teammates were all laughing at me and that they think I’m a joke. He said he was washing his hands of me right then and there and that he was done with me. He said he didn’t want anything more to do with me but have me show up and win ballgames for him.”
“Basically, the situation with Shea is irreconcilable differences between the player and the organization. We have a lot of pride in our organization, and we feel like we have a good organization and we have good people here. No one is above the team. We’ll leave it at that.”
—J.P. Ricciardi, Blue Jays general manager (MLB.com)
“We had no communication with Shea. His communication to us went through his agent with everything. He never talked to the manager and he never talked to the front office.”
“He’s been out four days. He needs a workout in the field. I’m not sure what time he got here, but he wasn’t here for the workout. He got hung up somewhere. He hasn’t swung the bat or taken ground balls in four days.”
–manager John Gibbons, on why he benched Hillenbrand upon his return to the team.
“I’m here to tell you that Gibby’s job is more secure today than it’s ever been. We stand by our manager. He made a stance for this team, for this organization. Not only that, we think he’s a good manager.”
–Ricciardi, saying a wee bit too much.
WHAT DID YOU KNOW AND WHEN DID YOU KNOW IT
“I’m assuming that to miss four days there is some complication.”
–Dodgers GM Ned Colletti, on 3B Cesar Izturis’ time off to be with his wife, Liliana, who gave birth this week (Los Angeles Times).
“I didn’t know it was caesarean until maybe Thursday.”
“He wants to be here. He wants to play. But would you leave your wife in the hospital?”
— Dodgers RP Giovanni Carrara on his friend’s situation.
“Anyone who has a family will understand me staying with my wife. It’s a situation where you really have no choice. I had to be there. I wanted to play and help my team, obviously, but I had to do what I had to do.”
“You have to use common sense and you have to use your heart and you have to remember that it’s family first. If you always put your family first, you’ll always have peace in your life and peace in your heart.”
“They really do have a heartbeat, there’s no question. They’re all in the game. They’re all thinking. The example Tuesday night was Johnny Damon. He lied to me [about having experience at first base], but I didn’t mind. Because I was looking to have someone lie to me.”
–Yankees skipper Joe Torre (Newsday)
“I came in and asked Jaret if he could run faster than [Giambi] could and he said yes. Then I asked Jason if his feelings would be hurt and he said no. So I made the move.”
“If I get traded from here, hey I’ve been chicken [expletive]. The GM has been great. Francona has been great. I’ve been so inconsistent, up and down.”
–Red Sox reliever Julian Tavarez (Boston Globe)
“To have a manager like that man, I have so much respect for that man. This man has the same attitude every day, with everybody.”
“This is a place you want to play. The fans? I won’t say they’re the best, but they show up every night.”
BONDS 722, PROSECUTION 0
“First off, I would like to say that what happened today is not a moment of joy for me, but one of temporary relief. This has been an issue that has surrounded me for the past three years and I hope that this is the end.”
—Barry Bonds, writing on his website
“An investigation happened and hopefully it is over. I do want to make it clear that there are no hard feelings for the legal process, but I feel there comes a point where everyone needs to move on.”
“He said, ‘F—, you’re kidding me. You told me I was going to be indicted today.'”
—Michael Rains, Bonds’ attorney, on his client’s reaction (New York Daily News).
“They don’t have enough to indict a ham sandwich, much less Barry Bonds.”
“We are not finished. We have postponed the decision for another day in light of some recent developments.”
–U.S. Attorney Kevin Ryan
“Oh yeah, he could be better next year. I hope they don’t expect him to hit .300.”
–Bonds teammate Moises Alou on what Bonds will do next year (Sacramento Bee).
“I’m talking good hitters and Yamid Haad telling them, hey, use your legs.”
–Alou, on who Bonds gives hitting advice to during batting practice.
“I was reading Sports Illustrated for Kids, and they asked Ortiz what he did. And he said he opened up a little, and that allows you to clear your hips a little bit easier. I tried it and it worked out well for me.”
—Josh Barfield, Padres second baseman(San Diego Union-Tribune).
“He said, ‘Do you want to play here?’ I said, ‘Yeah.’ He said, ‘Do you want to play here for a while?’ I said, ‘Of course–not here, because we’re in Tampa, but for Boston.’ I thought they were trading me to Tampa when he first came up to me.”
—Josh Beckett, about manager Terry Francona approaching him regarding the three-year (with a team option), $30 million dollar pact he signed this week (Boston Herald).
“The greatest part about it is it went into someone’s beer. My initial reaction was to send one of the kids in the clubhouse up there to buy them a new beer. Then I found out it was a Dodger fan.”
–Snakes outfielder Eric Byrnes on his three-run homer this week (MLB.com).
“Coach Hara told me, ‘a no. 4 batter never bows his head even if he gets struck out.’ He’s the greatest coach I’ve ever had.”
–Korean slugger Lee Seung-yeop of Yomiuri Giants, who is currently hitting .323/.383/.644 with 29 home runs in Japan (Chosun Ilbo).
“A.J. is in the middle of everything. It usually isn’t his fault.”
—Ozzie Guillen, on his team’s catcher, A.J. Pierzynski (MLB.com).
“I have not seen it, but I had it described to me as looking like a Smurf.”
–Orioles spokesman Bill Stetka on the Brian Roberts bobbleheads thrown out after arriving with “a dark skin tone with a bluish tint.”
“We’ve learned a lesson to not look just at a JPEG instead of actually looking at the final product.”
–Stetka (Baltimore Sun).
Alex Carnevale is an editorial assistant at Baseball Prospectus. He can be reached by clicking here.
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