BARRY WOULD LIKE TO ANNOUNCE THAT HE HAS NOT YET DECIDED WHETHER HE WILL ATTEND WHEN ALEX PASSES HIS HOME RUN RECORD
“He’s in the top three with me and Junior.”
“But, you know, people forget Manny Ramirez. When he was at Cleveland I used to watch that boy all day long. I couldn’t believe it. I still can’t believe how he plays. Defensive-wise he wasn’t always there.”
–Bonds (Brian Costello, New York Post)
TIS THE SEASON
“This is different than a few years ago when we got Ochoa from Milwaukee. In that case, we were looking for a bench guy, an outfielder. We’re not looking for that right now. What we’re looking for is somebody to be an everyday guy, a guy to really help us.”
—Angels GM Bill Stoneman
“If you look at what we’ve got, we’ve got pretty good players already. The player who is going to make us better is going to have to be a pretty good player. … What do you seek when you’re sitting in this position then? You seek a really good player.”
–Stoneman (Bill Plunkett, Orange County Register)
“To say they’ll give up young players like myself or Kemp for a one-year (upgrade), I guess it depends on what their motives are. If they feel that this is the year that they have to get something done and they want to make the push, that’s their choice and their decision to make. … We’re an important ingredient to what we’re doing here, but at the same time we’re a commodity and can be traded freely.”
—Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier
“Justin Upton is the most untouchable player in baseball. You can tell ’em that Mickey Mantle is coming back and they wouldn’t do it.”
–Unnamed scout, on the D’backs estimation of the younger Upton. (Ken Rosenthal, FoxSports.com)
“Incomprehensible. Four other teams in the National League West are awfully excited.”
—Padres closer Trevor Hoffman, on the deal that sent Scott Linebrink to Milwaukee for Will Inman and two other pitchers.
“You have to trust your front office when you are in the middle of a playoff run. But, man, to trade away your setup man … What kind of a message are we sending here?”
–Padres ace Jake Peavy
NOBODY KNOWS HIM LIKE HIS GOLDEN RETRIEVER KNOWS HIM
“He’s playing it stupid. He knows more English than you think he does.”
—Miguel Batista, on Ichiro.
“If we knew what he was eating, a lot of us would try to eat it because it’s working for him.”
—Ben Broussard, Mariners first baseman.
“I’ve never seen him eat. Nobody has.”
–Miguel Batista (Tom Moore, Seattle Post-Intelligencer)
ANSWERING THE PUBLIC CLAMOR FOR COMMENTS ON POTENTIAL DEALS FOR JOSH TOWERS
“We’re not going to trade Josh Towers for a bag of donuts. I’ve got to get something back who is a very good player for us to say, ‘Hey, we can hang our hat on this guy.’ I don’t need somebody who’s going to come to the big leagues right away, but I’m also committed to winning as many games as I can here and Josh gives us that opportunity.”
–Toronto GM J.P. Ricciardi
“I think all you have to do is look at Cleveland, they won 78 games last year and they’re knocking on the door with the same team. So, I think you either believe in the players you have or you don’t. I believe in the guys whom we have.”
“That being said, all you have to do is look around our lineup and see how good it is and what the young kids have done and see how optimistic you can be. I believe in this club. If I didn’t think we had a good club I’d be the first guy out there trying to shake it up. I don’t think we need to shake it up, we just need a little break in the way of staying healthy.”
–Ricciardi (Mike Rutsey, Toronto Sun)
A LAISSEZ-FAIRE APPROACH TO WINNING
“Then they don’t know Tom Hicks. People who know Tom Hicks know more than anything I want to win. And I do not want to lose money.”
“If we can do it in ’08 and win, that is great. If ’09, that’s great, too.”
–Hicks. (Jennifer Floyd Engel, Fort Worth Star-Telegram)
VOLDEMORT SHALL RISE AGAIN!
“Don’t worry, my day will come.”
–Barry Bonds, on Curt Schilling‘s comments on him on HBO’s Real Sports
“Jose Canseco admitted he cheated his entire career. Everything he ever did should be wiped clean. I think his MVP should go back and should go to the runner-up.”
“[He is a] midget who knows [nothing] about baseball.”
–Barry Bonds, on Bob Costas.
“When you’re sitting in front of Congress and you’re under oath, you’d better be damn sure if you’re going to mention a name that you are 100 percent guaranteed sure somebody did something.”
–Schilling, on his Congressional testimony.
“There were teams that had a subculture of it. Obviously, guys are still getting caught, which shows me that even with all of the safety nets in place, people are still doing it. My understanding is that steroids and HGH, one of the main benefits of them is regeneration. If I can show up Sept. 1 and feel April-fresh, I’ve got a huge advantage, not just that day but on everybody. And I think that’s why a lot of pitchers have been caught.”
–Schilling, on steroids.
“They don’t care how old I am.”
—Roger Clemens, on opposing hitters. (WFAN.com)
“I’m starting to break. I’m getting stressed out. I don’t know about these other guys, but I just want to win. I don’t want to be called a loser. Man, even my family calls our team losers, and I don’t want anyone to say that about our team.”
—Pirates starter Ian Snell (Dejan Kovacevic, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
“But a day later, you wouldn’t have known we ever ran the story. He held no grudges. He was the same old Tony.”
—Tom Kravosic, “longtime Padres beat writer for the Union-Tribune,” on media favorite Tony Gwynn after the Trib wrote a story about Gwynn’s annual weight gain. (Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times)
“The year Harmon Killebrew was inducted. It was 1984, and my oldest boy was probably about 12. I used to play wiffleball with him in the backyard. I was out there hammering away. During that Induction ceremony, I was outside of our building, and I was listening as he gave his speech. Harmon tells the story that his mother was complaining because the boys were playing baseball on this lawn. His dad said, ‘We’re raising boys, not grass.’ That hit home.”
–Hall of Fame curator Ted Spencer, on his most memorable day at the Hall of Fame. (Mark Newman, MLB.com)
“I’ll never forget it. It was beautiful for me. Right now, I thank God that I did a good job. I watched a lot of these guys on television as a kid. Now I’m on the same team with them. I can’t believe that I’m here.”
—White Sox rookie Danny Richar, on his major league debut. (Paul Ladewski, Chicago Sun-Times)
Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.