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Marlins Fire Girardi PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 03 October 2006 02:40

Joe GirardiWhat has been speculated for over a month has, today, become a reality. Joe Girardi has been fired as manager of the Florida Marlins after one season with the club. He had a three-year guaranteed contract, meaning the Marlins will have to pay him for the two seasons he would have otherwise managed.

As we reported Sunday, Fredi Gonzalez is expected to fill Girardi's shoes.

As reported:

Girardi's strained relationship with [owner Jeffrey] Loria and general manager Larry Beinfest became public this summer. Loria subsequently declined to endorse the job Girardi did in his first year as a manager, even though the Marlins far exceeded expectations while playing 22 rookies.

The rift erupted at a game Aug. 6 when Loria berated an umpire while sitting behind the plate. From the dugout, Girardi asked the owner to stop, witnesses said. Loria angrily left his seat and confronted Girardi after the game during a 90-minute clubhouse meeting.

Loria declined to comment on the episode or respond to published reports that he fired Girardi, then changed his mind. Beginning in spring training, Beinfest clashed with Girardi over personnel decisions, and during the second half of the season the general manager was rarely seen in the clubhouse or manager's office.

(The South Florida Sun-Sentinel)

 
IAAF Suggests "Health Passports" PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Tuesday, 03 October 2006 02:27

At the end of a three-day symposium hosted by the International Association of Athletics Federations yesterday, officials announced the need for better tracking of athletes' physiological makeup, and suggested the use of "health passports" to assist in that effort. The system would use a worldwide data base for storing and evaluating the information.

As reported:

"It's not that we suspect individual athletes but we wish to protect the vast majority who aren't doing anything wrong from those who try to cheat you, rob you and steal your glory," World Anti-Doping Agency executive committee member Arne Ljungqvist said. "That's why we need to profile all athletes individually."

Health passports - or medical profiles - could help anti-doping agencies identify abnormalities or detect sudden changes in an athlete's blood. WADA first championed the idea in 2001, but it has recently gained momentum.

Currently, testers measure athletes' samples against predetermined average levels for substances naturally occurring in the body - such as EPO and testosterone. But this potentially allows athletes with naturally low levels to cheat without being detected.

The IAAF's medical and anti-doping commission hopes to launch the project before the world championships at Osaka next August.

(The AP)

 
No Payroll Cutbacks if Braves Sold to Liberty PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Monday, 02 October 2006 12:00

BravesWhile there has been concern by fans, and even players such as Chipper Jones about possible cuts to the player patroll should MLB approve the sale of the Braves to Colorado based Liberty Media, team president Terry McGuirk says not to worry. 

"I can tell you categorically — there's not going to be any cutbacks," McGuirk said Monday.

McGuirk appears to be at least one component of the current front office staff that will remain with the club when MLB approves the sale.

On the sale, McGuirk said, "It's overdue. Therefore it's no telling when it might get done. There's no timetable."

General manager John Schuerholz and manager Bobby Cox are under contract through 2007.

As reported:

Atlanta's 2006 payroll was about $40 million less than Boston's and $20 million below the payroll of the NL East champion New York Mets. But it's more than five times Florida's major league-low $15 million payroll. The Marlins finished fourth in the NL East, one game behind the Braves (79-83).

McGuirk said the $80 million figure has been a good level for the Braves, necessitating careful free-agent spending and more reliance on players drafted and developed by the Braves in their traditionally strong minor league organization. He believes the "Baby Braves" of 2005 re-energized the team and its fan base.

"I think the proof of the pudding was there this weekend when 100,000 showed up to watch a team that was out of the playoffs," McGuirk said, referring to the crowd total for a three-game weekend series against Houston that ended Sunday, which pushed season attendance slightly above the 2005 total.

  (The Atlanta Journal Constitution)

 
"Inaccuracies" in PED Story Linked to Grimsley PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Monday, 02 October 2006 11:30

Seems the LA Times may be in the hot seat.

The big story over the weekend was a report by the LA Times stating that the names on a redacted version of papers filed in federal court during the Jason Grimsley investigation into performance enhancing drugs were Roger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Miguel Tejada, Brian Roberts and Jay Gibbons. Now it seems that may not necessarily be the case.

The federal prosecutor overseeing the investigation is quoted as saying there are "significant inaccuracies" in the LA Times report.  As reported:

San Francisco U.S. Attorney Kevin Ryan issued a statement Monday, saying: "In view of the recent news reports purporting to identify certain athletes whose names had been redacted from the government's search warrant filings in the Grimsley matter, and in the interests of justice, please be advised that these reports contain significant inaccuracies."

A spokesman for Ryan declined to elaborate.

A spokesman for the Los Angeles Times had no immediate comment. The newspaper reported that an unidentified source with access to the document allowed the newspaper to view it, and a second source provided additional details about the document.

(The AP)

 
Felipe Alou out as Giants manager PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Monday, 02 October 2006 11:19

AlouAfter five seasons with the San Francisco Giants, GM Brian Sabean announced Monday that Felipe Alou will not be back as manager in 2007.

The Giants had a 76-85 record and finished third-place in the National League West this season.

"Tough decisions are always painful and this one is especially painful," Sabean said. "Felipe (Alou) is a man of unquestioned integrity who has put his heart and soul into the Giants. He endured some injuries to key players over his tenure here and always kept the club in contention despite some difficult circumstances.

"The Giants were very fortunate to have a man of his stature at the helm of our club over the last four years and I personally thank him for his loyal efforts and significant contributions."

(The AP)

 
Updated 2006 Division Series broadcast schedule PDF Print E-mail
Written by Press Release   
Sunday, 01 October 2006 17:42
The following is the national broadcast schedule for the first four days of the 2006 American League and National League Division Series.

FOX and ESPN will provide complete coverage of all Division Series games, while ESPN Radio will provide national radio coverage. MLB International will be transmitting the entire Division Series to a worldwide audience. In addition, broadcast rightsholders from Japan and Puerto Rico will broadcast live from select Division Series games.

The remainder of the Division Series schedule will be announced later this week.

2006 DIVISION SERIES (ALL TIMES EASTERN AND SUBJECT TO CHANGE)

Tuesday, October 3rd
1:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 1, Oakland Athletics @ Minnesota Twins, ESPN
4:00 p.m.: NLDS Game 1, St. Louis Cardinals @ San Diego Padres, ESPN
8:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 1, Detroit Tigers @ New York Yankees, FOX

Wednesday, October 4th
1:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 2, Oakland Athletics @ Minnesota Twins, ESPN
4:00 p.m.: NLDS Game 1, Los Angeles Dodgers @ New York Mets, ESPN
8:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 2, Detroit Tigers @ New York Yankees, ESPN

Thursday, October 5th
4:00 p.m.: NLDS Game 2, St. Louis Cardinals @ San Diego Padres, ESPN
8:00 p.m.: NLDS Game 2, Los Angeles Dodgers @ New York Mets, FOX

Friday, October 6th
4:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 3, Minnesota Twins @ Oakland Athletics, ESPN
8:00 p.m.: ALDS Game 3, New York Yankees @ Detroit Tigers, ESPN
 
MacPhail resigns as Cubs' President PDF Print E-mail
Written by The Staff   
Sunday, 01 October 2006 17:24

Andy McPhailChicago Cubs President Andy MacPhail resigned on Sunday, ending his 12 year run as president of the organization. The Cubs finished the season 66-96 (.407), last in the NL Central. Under McPhail's tenure the Cubs went to the playoffs twice (the Divison Championship in '98 when the Cubs lost to the Braves, and in 2003 when they lost the NLCS to the Marlins).

As reported, "I have been here 12 seasons and during that time there have been only two postseasons," MacPhail said. "That's not what I came here to do. I haven't been as effective as I wanted to be. I think for a franchise that has had a payroll among the top teams, we should be doing better and we are not. I am the CEO and I am responsible."

"I think what is most frustrating to me is just a lack of consistency. This year is an example to a degree," MacPhail said. "It was a club that we thought we were building on just evaporated on us. The last couple of years we have had some of our highest paid players on the disabled list for most of the season."

Senior vice president of marketing and broadcasting, John McDonough will serve as interim president while Jim Hendry will remain as general manager of baseball operations.

(The AP)

 
Girardi Out, Fredi Gonzalez In with Marlins PDF Print E-mail
Written by Maury Brown   
Sunday, 01 October 2006 11:29

Girardi It appears Joe Girardi's time with the Marlins is done after only one season. Sources inform me that Girardi is out in Florida and that Fredi Gonzalez, the third base coach for the Atlanta Braves, will take Girardi's place.

Gonzalez was the Marlins' third base coach from 1999 through 2001. Before joining the Marlins major league club, he managed in the minor leagues for nine years, earning league manager of the year honors from Baseball America three times: in 1993 when High Desert finished 82-52 in the regular season and won the Class-A California League championship; in 1994, when Brevard County went 78-61 in the Class-A Florida State League; and in 1997, when he guided Portland (ME) to a 79-63 record and first place in the AA Eastern League.

There are a number of clubs where Girardi might land. Girardi has been talked of as the NL Manager of the Year due to his ability to take a roster that was almost exclusively made up of rookies into a club that finished ahead of expectations. As little as two weeks ago, the Marlins were in the hunt for the NL Wild Card before slowing down at the end of the season, finishing 78-84 (.481). Girardi has been mentioned for the manager's position with the Cubs and Nationals, to name two.

 
Grimsley implicates Clemens, Pettitte, Tejada , others PDF Print E-mail
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Written by The Staff   
Saturday, 30 September 2006 16:20

ClemensRoger Clemens, Andy Pettitte, Miguel Tejada, Brian Roberts and Jay Gibbons were the names of players implicated by Jason Grimsley as using performance enhancing drugs, and were blacked out in a redacted version of an affidavit filed in federal court. The names of the players had been removed from the search warrant affidavit filed in Phoenix on May 31 during the investigation into Grimsley. Grimsley, who is now retired, was questioned after an illegal shipment of HGH was shipped to his Scottsdale home and tracked there by federal agents.

The identity of the 5 player names has long been a source of speculation. As the LA Times reports:

A source with authorized access to an unredacted affidavit allowed The Times to see it briefly and read aloud some of what had been blacked out of the public copies. A second source and confidant of Grimsley had previously disclosed player identities and provided additional details about the affidavit. The sources cooperated only on condition of anonymity.

According to the affidavit, Grimsley told investigators that Clemens "used athletic performance-enhancing drugs." He also allegedly said Tejada used anabolic steroids.

The affidavit also alleges that Grimsley told federal agents that former Orioles teammates Tejada, Brian Roberts and Jay Gibbons "took anabolic steroids." Roberts was the American League's all-star second baseman in 2005 when Grimsley was an Oriole.

There was no comment by any of the players alleged in the affidavit. MLB spokesman Rich Levin said of the affidavit, that MLB officials had "no information [about] how it was obtained or its accuracy."

(The LA Times)

 
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