After the Yankees losing out on their number one target , Cliff Lee, the Yankees are still unsure about Andy Pettitte. Pettitte has expressed multiple times that he is leaning towards retirement, and the Yankees organization should plan ahead without him. More talk surrounding the Yankees concerning Marcus Thames have coaxed them to seek other options for the outfield. One option would include signing Andruw Jones. Jones, 33, batted .230 with 19 home runs and 48 RBIs in 107 games for the White Sox last season while seeing time in all three outfield positions. Jones also has experience in the DH spot. Thames on the other hand played more DH position for the Yankees last season than the outfield.
One of the bigger news in the Major Leagues right now is the deal between Matt Garza, and the Chicago Cubs. Its been said that the Tampa Bay Rays are looking to receive quite a bit of prospects for Matt Garza. Chris Archer who won the 2010 Minor League Pitcher of the Year award, Brandon Guyer who won the 2010 Minor League Player of the Year award, shortstop Hak-Ju Lee, catcher Robinson Chirinos, and outfielder Sam Flud would all go to the Rays for Matt Garza. Most prospects posting some above average numbers, and fans already speculate the Rays losing Garza would not be playoff contenders in the upcoming seasons. The Cubs, if aquired Garza would have a strong pitching rotation that would include Carlos Zambrano, Ryan Dempster, Randy Wells, Tom Gorzelanny, and Carlos Silva.
There has been light talk of Albert Pujols up and coming contract. Sources say that something needs to happen before spring training or else Pujols wont be available for talk about contracts during the season.
Joe Torre will be looking to latch onto a position as a MLB executive VP. Since the former manager of the Yankees, and the Dodgers has left that important managerial position he has been seeking other employment within baseball, and has been steadily talking to Bud Selig to become the executive VP of operations for MLB.
The first ball of the evening came from Greg Holland of the Kansas City Royals. Some kid was harassing him to the point where the baseball players decided to harass back. Everytime the kid called for a baseball from Holland, the other players would call for a baseball from Holland as well. It was so funny I nearly had to sit down in the seats. Eventually, Holland just tossed me a baseball. I dont know if it was because I wasnt the harasser or because I was totally amused by the whole thing. But for my politeness I received a baseball, and of course I thanked him for it.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PCC6wDei2cQ <— Link to the Youtube video of the kid.
I didnt record the best parts of the kid interacting with Holland, but youll get the idea of how annoying this kid was just by watching this short 15 second video of him asking for a baseball.
Towards the end of batting practice I circled my way around the entire stadium, and I ended up on the first base side. I figured If I was going to get my second baseball it would probably come from this side. David Price, and Matt Garza were tossing a few into the crowd. So I waited around patiently for the opportunity to strike. It wasnt long before a security guard waved me over to him. Great. I thought I was going to be asked to leave or get my ticket checked. But nope. He simply started to talk my ear off about the best way to get a baseball. I quickly shut him down by explaining of the box full of baseballs I have at home, who my greatest toss ups came from, and all my past injuries Ive sustained while doing this. This was like my second job. Coming to the ballpark, and seeing how many baseballs I could get. That shut him up. As I wandered back down the steps a sharp liner came ripping into the seats. I took a step back, and watched the ball take its first sharp bounce. Straight up! I had a shot! I raced two rows over, hurdled one row down, and the ball managed to bounce off two more seats before rolling down the aisle the other way. I was running down the aisle after it, and scooped it up with my glove. Too easy. I heard the disappointed groans from potential competition behind me as I casually walked away with the trophy. Two baseballs on the day was pretty good. The third baseball came from one of the Tampa Bay Rays pitchers that was running off the field. I simply followed him towards his dugout and raised my glove in the air. He airmailed me one and I had to dodge a row quickly to make the catch. I didnt regonize who it was though. Maybe next time.
All in all it was a pretty decent evening at Kauffman. Three on the evening and one last night. I was on track to break 100 at this point. But Id have to have a huge game tomorrow to do it.
Game; October 1st 2010 Tampa Bay Rays VS Kansas City Royals
So after taking a two and a half month hiatus from baseball ( mainly because it was so hot, and I just couldnt stand the heat this year ) I managed to catch three more games before the season ended.
It was a blissful day at Kauffman Stadium. The air was cool, and it had been months since I had been chasing down baseballs. I felt a little rusty, but at the same time I felt confident. I was nervous. I actually found out a secret today at Kauffman. They have the early bird tours that allows fans to enter the stadium an hour early than the regular time. Of course you have to put up with a little political stadium nonsense like a stadium tour, and some dugout experience that you sit in a mock dugout, and watch the history of the Royals. Its about fifteen minutes long. After that they allow the fans to watch batting practice. But the catch is you have to stay between the dugout, and the foul pole. So any baseballs that go out into outfield bleachers will be retrieved by stadium staff. Total bummer. But thank goodness the Tampa bay Rays were in town. Not one baseball went into the outfield bleachers that I saw.
I snagged seven baseballs overall in three games. Which raised my total lifetime to 96, and my season stats to 86. My first baseball came from Dan Wheeler. I was decked out in my Tampa Bay Ray gear, and he noticed me right away. After he was done warming up he fired a baseball my way with a high arch to it. I was excited that I would get my first baseball of the day after a long hiatus this quickly. I was so excited I closed my glove too soon, and even thanked him before the ball struck my glove. The ball took a high bounce up, and I soon realized I didnt make the catch. I saw the white orb drop before my view, and I threw my arms out to get a visual so I could re-adjust, and catch it if I could. The ball clanged off the railing, and it made a sickening bounce down towards the field. I had a split second to react, and before I could the ball bounced off the top of the padded wall, and shot down to the grassy field. My stomach turned. I wouldnt get that back I though. Dan Wheeler had jogged out to the outfield to shag fly balls, and there was only one player near the ball. Luckily, it rolled into his view, and he picked it up. I quickly laughed it off and explained I had dropped it. He quickly lobbed it back up to me. Wow. What a relief! I joked with a nearby fan that, that was the first baseball I had dropped all year, and it was hard to get them back once dropped.
Batting practice ended and I took my assigned seat to watch the contest in full. It was a great game because it seemed like the Rays were just letting the Royals beat up on them. The Rays at a sure spot in the playoffs anyway so I think they were saving what they had left in the tank for the playoffs.
A unique experience to say the least.
Game; September 30th 2010 Tampa Bay Rays Vs Kansas City Royals