Category Archives: Scandal

News on two former Yankees’ pitchers….

Yankee Stadium Frieze

An interesting, and sad, day regarding two former Yankees’ pitchers.

Esteban Loaiza, who was briefly with the Yankees in 2004 (but long enough to lose Game 5 of the ALCS to Boston), was caught with 44 pounds of cocaine or heroin, worth $500K.

According to Fox News,

the two-time All-Star is being held on $200,000 bail. He was booked into the South Bay Detention Center (San Diego) just before 6 p.m. Friday. Loaiza was first stopped for a traffic infraction after leaving an Imperial Beach home. His car is believed to be used in a drug smuggling operation.

Loaiza, a Mexican-born pitcher, won 126 games during his career. He played for eight teams in 14 seasons: Pittsburgh Pirates, Texas Rangers, Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, Washington Nationals, Oakland A’s, Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers.

He capped off his career pitching in 10 games for the White Sox and Dodgers in 2008. His had his best season in 2003 when he won 21 games and finished second in American League Cy Young voting while with the White Sox.

He made $43.7 million during his career, Baseball Reference reported.

Loaiza was the husband of singer Jenni Rivera, who died in a Mexico plane crash in 2012.

Loaiza is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

Meanwhile, HOF pitcher Rich “Goose” Gossage is not welcome at the Yankees’ spring training. Gossage would be a guest instructor in prior years, but his general grumpiness about the game today, in which he would rant about one-inning guys like Rivera and Chapman, must have gotten under GM Brian Cashman’s skin, among others.

Cashman had no comment, but Gossage ranted today about Cashman, and nothing he had to say about the GM was very good.

Goose may have a plaque in Monument Park, but there seem to be plenty of bridges that are burned here.



Yanks sign Espinosa to minor league deal.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

I feel as if the Yanks will be going with Andujar at 3B, and Torres (after he spends the first two weeks at AAA to push back his arbitration/free agency a year) at 2B.

But to hedge their bets, the Yanks signed Jace Peterson to a minor league contract a few weeks ago.

Today, they hedged their bets a bit further, signing Danny Espinosa to a minor league deal.

The plusses to Espinosa: 30, 31 in April. Still in his “prime.”

Switch-hitter with power. 21 HR in 2011 for the Nationals. 24 in 2016.

Postseason Experience with the Nationals in 2012, 2014 & 2016.

Mostly 2B/SS, has played some 3B.

The negatives: .221 career batting average, OPS+ just 82, 18% below league average.

189 strikeouts led the NL in 2012. 174 K in 2016.

In 93 games in 2017, most with the Angels, but some w/Seattle and Tampa Bay, .173-6-31, OPS+ a dreadful 43.

In 2016 for Washington, .209-24-72, OPS+79.

162 g. average: .221-18-59, 12 SB, OPS+ 82. 45 walks, 175 K.

I’m not enthused by the move. But experience in case the rookies (Andujar/Wade/Torres/Estrada) don’t pan out. And a minor league deal, which means little $$$.

The Indians announced they are soon scrapping Chief Wahoo as their symbol, bowing to the PC crowd, calling Chief Wahoo racist.

I never looked at Chief Wahoo (who looks a lot like one-time Indian Don Mossi, by the way) as racist. He was just a logo to me, the same as Chief Nok-a-Homa was with the Braves in the 1970s.

The same with the Redskins nickname in football. But that’s just me. I probably have thicker skin than others.

But with these snowflakes, sheesh. Grow a pair, get some thin skin. Really, just grow up.

So sensitive.


Once again, time to strip the HOF ballot from some BBWAA members.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

As the Baseball HOF ballots are being counted (and new, if any, members are to be announced January 24) once again we see that the BBWAA should seriously consider stripping voting privileges away from some of its members.

This year’s case in point (so far): Bill Livingston of the Cleveland Plain Dealer who only voted for two ex-players: former Indians Jim Thome and Omar Vizquel.

If he wants to skip over known and suspected steroid users like Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Sammy Sosa and Manny Ramirez, that is one thing.

But what about others who may need every vote they can in order to receive the 75% it takes to get in? Ex-players like Mike Mussina, Trevor Hoffman, Vladimir Guerrero or Edgar Martinez?

If someone like Mussina winds up with 74.7%, they don’t round up. Hoffman missed by only a handful of votes last year.

And, if someone like Mussina just misses, he has a legitimate gripe against voters like Livingston.

Voters like Livingston (and others who vote for candidates clearly not HOF worthy just to give them a vote—maybe they were drinking buddies with that player?) should have their voting privileges revoked.

Things not as easy for Jeter now that he’s in the front office.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

In his short time as a Marlins’ executive, Derek Jeter has made, and may yet make, some unpopular, controversial decisions, and the public relations, which always were so good when he was Yankees’ SS and captain, have been pretty bad.

First off, he let some popular Marlins figures go, including “Mr. Marlin”, Jeff Conine. Some people were offered positions back, but at significant pay cuts.

Jeter knew coming into this job that he inherited a mess. Lots of cost-cutting and decisions would have to be made that will make Jeter look like the bad guy. This was the first of those types of moves.

Some moves may be necessary, but Jeter will and has come across as heartless, cold and calculating.

Secondly, the problem with Giancarlo Stanton and his huge contract. 10 more years, $295MM. Stanton most likely will be traded this offseason, and it most likely won’t resonate well with Marlins’ fans who will hate to see the 2017 NL MVP go. Stanton won’t be alone, either. Other Marlins players will go as the Marlins seek to gut the team to get to a very low payroll.

Now, another move that is just bad P.R. and may be the icing on the cake so far. A Marlins scout was just let go. The problem is, this scout just had surgery for colon cancer, and needs a kidney transplant. The scout was informed of his layoff while he was, yup, in the hospital, and Jeter did not inform the scout personally but some underling did the dirty deed instead.

Jeter is finding out being a front office exec of the Marlins is a little different than being the beloved captain of the Yankees.

Judge has surgery; Ohtani on way?

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Apparently Aaron Judge hit a lot of his 52 HR on a damaged shoulder. Judge slumped after the All-Star break, but rebounded to hit 15 HR in September. He had a poor ALDS vs. the Indians, but went 6 for 24 with 2 doubles and 3 HR against Houston in the ALCS.

Could a couple of cortisone shots have helped him in September and in the ALCS?

Judge had surgery Monday on his left shoulder, the one the press said he was icing for a while, to clear out some debris in there. He should be OK for the beginning of spring training.

But he was most likely playing with it like that for a while. Not bad for damaged goods, eh?

Meanwhile, MLB passed a new posting setup with Japan, so Shohei Ohtani looks like he is coming over to play MLB baseball, and the Yankees are the heavy favorite to land the 23 year old.

If you have access to youtube, pull up his highlights and watch them. He could be a combination of Masahiro Tanaka and Hideki Matsui in ONE PACKAGE.


A guy who pitches AND hits that well. And the $20MM posting fee does not count against the cap, and the Yankees got extra bonus $ to throw at him. He would come, salary-wise, cheap, and only the salary goes against the cap.

The Yanks have to take a chance on him. Hits 100 MPH on the mound, lefty power hitter at the plate.

Does both well, hence the nickname the “Japanese Babe Ruth.” Think of Babe, ca. 1918 & 1919.

And the Yanks are the heavy favorites to land him. Recruiting pitches from Tanaka and Matsui should help.

The Braves were hit hard today for breaking international signing rules. Their GM was permanently barred from the game and 13 minor leaguers, including their top prospect, are now free agents.


WS Game 4. LA evens series with 5-run 9th.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Remember that with the dismissal of Joe Girardi, the new manager will most likely have an all new coaching staff. All of the coaches have contracts expiring Tuesday, and hiring a manager whose coaching staff has been pre-picked for him makes so sense.

The Dodgers evened the WS up at two games apiece by winning Game 4, 6-2. They scored five runs in the top of the 9th. It was the first postseason game this year that Houston lost at home.

Houston scored first, when George Springer’s homer broke up a no-hit bid and put Houston up 1-0.

Cody Bellinger doubled and scored on a Logan Forsythe single to tie the game in the seventh.

A single, walk, and double by Bellinger put LA up 2-1 in the top of the ninth. After a strikeout and intentional walk to load the bases for a possible inning-ending DP, a SF by Austin Barnes and 3-run HR by Joc Pederson put LA up 6-1. Houston got an Alex Bregman HR in the bottom of the ninth for the final score of 6-2.

The two homers for the two Houston runs were the only hits Houston had all game.

Once again, a case where someone does well, and instead of leaving him in, a manager goes to his “closer.” In this case, Devenski has a 1-2-3 eighth for Houston, gets pulled and Giles blows the game.

When will managers learn to keep effective pitchers in the game?

Don’t get me wrong, because of family outside LA, I’m pulling for the Dodgers since the Yankees are out of it, but…

Game 5. Kuechel vs. Kershaw. Maybe the key game of the Series. Should be a good one.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale (8-7-1) won 11-3. Yankees’ prospects:

LF Billy McKinney 2 for 5, double, 4 RBI. .306
RF Estevan Florial 0 for 3, walked 2x, scored 2 runs. .316

Starting pitcher Justus Sheffield (W, 2-1, 2.37) 5 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 0 W, 6 K.
Reliever Andrew Schwaab 1 IP, 1 r, 2 H, 1 W, 1 K. 8.31.

Too bad MLB suspended Yuri Gurriel for 5 games next year and not for during this WS. What he did was uncalled for. But MLB wanted to penalize him and not his teammates for his inappropriate gesture.

A long shot, but besides someone like Raul Ibanez, many say Jason Giambi has what it takes to be a manager, but would Cashman hire someone without managerial experience?

Hearrtbreaker for my alma mater, Penn State, who just like in last year’s Rose Bowl, blew a 2-touchdown or more lead late in the game. This time it’s a 39-38 loss at Ohio State.



Boras, Ellsbury, the AFL and WS Game 1.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Scott Boras is known as a top-notch agent.

He inflates the importance of players to get them ridiculous salaries they don’t deserve, and at a commission.

Often, these salaries are for too long, for too much, and is a burden on the teams that fall for Boras’ BS.

One such example is with Jacoby Ellsbury. Ellsbury probably has the worst contract with the Yankees right now, and maybe in all of baseball.

In 2013, Ellsbury helped the Red Sox to a WS title, and made $9MM that year. After the season, the free agent signed with the Yankees for seven years with an option for an eighth at a little over $21MM per year. Nice jump.

And little production since. The oft-injured CF has averaged .264-10-50 with 26 SB a year in his four seasons with the Yankees, and lost his CF job. His OPS+ is 95. 5% below league average, and he is not known for his throwing arm, either.

$21MM for a fourth OF/DH. One with average stats, nice speed, not the greatest arm. And three more guaranteed years on his contract.

One who this season hit .264-7-39 with 22 SB and who went 0 for 9 in the postseason.

One who hasn’t hit .270, hit 10 HR, driven in 60, stolen 25 bases or has had an OPS+ of 100 (league average) in any of the last three years.

So Bore-A$$ starts complaining about his playing time.

Hey Bore-a$$, shut up. Continue fleecing teams for your 15% commission or whatever you get and stop trying to be their manager.

As for Ellsbury, maybe he last a comeback in him at age 34. But the last three years don’t signify that. The Yanks would love to dump his salary if they could, even if they have to eat most of it.

A bad deal. Bore-a$$ should just laugh his way to the bank, having found a sucker who signed Ellsbury for that much.

And he should just STFU about playing time.

In the Arizona Fall League, Scottsdale won 3-1. Yankees prospects:

RF Estevan Florial 0 for 4, struck out 3x.
1B Billy McKinney 2 for 4 with a strikeout.
SS Thairo Estrada 1 for 4, solo HR, one strikeout.

Starting Pitcher Albert Abreu 5 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 0 W, 4 K. Gave up 1 HR.
Relief pitcher Andrew Schwaab 1 IP, 0 r, 0 H, 1 W, 0 K.
Relief Pitcher Cody Carroll (S, 2) 2 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 W, 3 K.

In WS Game 1, LA beat Houston 3-1. Chris Taylor hit Dallas Keuchel’s first pitch of the game for a 447 ft. HR. Houston tied it in the fourth on a HR by Alex Bregman but in the bottom of the sixth, Justin Turner’s 2-run HR was the deciding blow. Clayton Kershaw outduelled Keuchel. Kershaw went 7 innings, giving up one run on three hits, and struck out 11.