THEY ARE ARGUABLY CONVINCED THAT THIS MOVE WILL WORK
“There’s going to be somebody available, maybe not to the level of Jack and Freddy, but now we take the dollar difference between the investment in the shortstop or second baseman and apply it somewhere else. We arguably feel we’ll be a better team with two or three players, not just one.”
–Pirates general manager Neil Huntington, on failed attempts to reach extensions with shortstop Jack Wilson and second baseman Freddy Sanchez.
“I’m very excited to possibly continue my career in Pittsburgh, to finish what I’ve started, and Freddy is going to be a vital piece of any decision I make. Without Freddy, I think, it would be tough to win without a player like that.”
-Pirates shortshop Jack Wilson, on the negotiations with the team.
“They don’t feel we’re even in the same ballpark, so it’s not worth countering because they feel like years, dollars, the foundation is so far off what their expectations are, it’s not worth countering, and that’s understandable. We’ve made a quick attempt to try to sign players for what we feel works for us; if it doesn’t work for them, they don’t accept.”
“I want to finish my career turning double plays with Jack in a Pirates uniform. If it works out, it would be unbelievable. This is what we’ve been talking about for a long time.”
-Pirates second baseman Freddy Sanchez
“We’ve not received a counter at his point, so for our minds, they’re not interested even in the foundation we’ve laid. Typically in a negotiation you get a counter offer and that’s how conversations continue, and we haven’t gotten that.”
“We made an offer, we put a deadline on it, as I’ve done with every offer I’ve made. You can’t leave it out there indefinitely and we’re a little time sensitive here because of the looming [July 31] trade deadline.”
-Huntington (Dejan Kovacevic, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)
PRESIDENTS AND HALL OF FAMERS ALIKE, MEET ICHIRO
“I wanted to do that for a grand upperclassman of the baseball world. I think it’s only natural for someone to want to do that, to express my feelings in that way.”
–Mariners right fielder Ichiro Suzuki, with his wife Yumiko visiting George Sisler‘s grave.
“There’s not many chances to come to St. Louis..”
“My idea, when I saw him, was to say, ‘What’s up?’ to him. But I got nervous. You know, he has that kind of aura about him. So I got nervous and I didn’t say that to him. I was a little disappointed about that.”
-Suzuki, on meeting President Obama.
“But I realized after seeing him today that presidents wear jeans, too. So my hope is that our skipper, [Don] Wakamatsu, was watching that and we can wear jeans on our flights, as well.”
-Suzuki (Reid Laymance, St. Louis Post-Dispatch)
NOT EVEN THE MOST EXCITING GAME PLAYED THIS WEEK
“The fans here understand what a guy like Stan Musial means to the game of baseball. They embrace him. They cherish him. He kind of has an aura around him. When he’s walking through a room, everything stops.”
-Former Cardinal Dan Haren, at the All-Star Game.
“Obviously, these are the fanatics. But these fans want us to win really badly. It’s a National League venue, and our first (win) in 13 years would be a great thing for us. Everybody in the crowd was (yelling), ‘We need a win, we need a win. Let’s do it, c’mon.'”
–Giants starter Tim Lincecum, on the fans at Busch Stadium.
“For whatever reason, the numbers have been what they have been for the last 10 or 12 years. I don’t think it’s a true assessment of how well the game is played in the National League.”
–Brewers closer Trevor Hoffman, on the All-Star Game’s being all about the AL winning recently.
J.P. RICCIARDI AND PETER GAMMONS HAD A CHAI TEA TOGETHER: WHAT’S THE LATEST?
“It’s a negative if they trade him, and a negative of they don’t.”
-Another anonymous American League executive (Jon Heyman, SI.com)
“You’re not going to go out and hit 45 home runs in this park. If you want to do that, you’ve got to go 10 miles down the road.”
–Mets right fielder Jeff Francoeur on CitiField as opposed to Yankee Stadium 2. (Mark Hermann, Newsday)
“The waiver stuff is not going to prevent deals in August. Guys are going to get through because people will be afraid to claim and get stuck with the money they can’t afford. The July 31 deadline is more of a fictitious one now, anyway. It’s not like it was when Steve Phillips and I were going haywire, taking everybody off the wire. Those days are dead and buried, because no one can live with a mistake like they used to. The economy’s changed, and it’s affected everybody.”
–Yankees general manager Brian Cashman (Tyler Kepner, The New York Times)
“He’s throwing 98. I think he supplied a lot of the power.”
-Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, on a Justin Verlander pitch that barely went out of Yankee Stadium 2. (Peter Abraham, LoHud Yankees Blog)
Alex Carnevale is a contributor to Baseball Prospectus.