Tag Archives: johan santana

Me, Elsewhere: John Rocker and Johan Santana, Together At Last

I wanted to alert loyal Scratchbomb readers to a couple of posts I’ve penned elsewhere that went up in the last few days. First, for Vice, a look at creep ne plus ultra John Rocker, who’s just released his long awaited (by no one) memoirs entitled Scars and Stripes. (GET IT?) Rocker’s been making the rounds withe bottom-barrelest right wing news sites, and one such profile was the inspiration for my piece. Spoiler alert: I’m not a big fan!

One thing I’d completely forgotten about when I wrote this article (which is just as well, since it probably wouldn’t have fit) is how half-assed Rocker’s “apology” was when he came to New York for the first time after his infamous Sports Illustrated profile. While doing my research for Yells For Ourselves, I rediscovered coverage of his return to NYC, and it’s sickening how much he tries to weasel out of saying he’s sorry, like he’s Racist Fonzie.

Rocker recorded a video they played on Diamond Vision at Shea in which he said, among other things, “Many people perceived these comments to be malicious, and for this again I apologize.” In other words, It’s YOUR fault for being offended. “I am not the evil person that has been portrayed.” It’s the media’s fault for reporting exactly what I said.

Rocker’s the kind of bully who, if you punched him back, would run to the principal and insist you started the altercation. I realize that writing about him at all is just fuel for his warped fire, but good lord, he cannot fall off the face of the earth fast enough for me.

I also took time to write about non-horrible people. Last week, the Mets finally saw one of their pitchers throw a no hitter. Maybe you heard about it? It was a cause for much rejoicing, which is why I was so perturbed by a post at Deadspin that wondered if Mets fans wished another pitcher had done it. I disagree strenuously with that premise for several reasons. To find them all out, you’ll have to read this post I did for The Classical. Or, barring that, have someone read it to you.

Speaking of which, Jon Stewart’s piece on The Daily Show about attending Johan’s no-no with his family was heartwarming in a Jon Stewart-y sort of way. When it comes to baseball + children, I can get embarrassingly sentimental. This ESPN ad still brings a tear to the eye, and every time a broadcast shows a dad with a small kid in the stands, I get all misty. I’m sure the same is true for many parents who also sublimate their emotions into sporting events. Go team!

Mets Deny Johan Santana’s Impending Death

PORT ST. LUCIE, FL–Officials from the Mets front office denied reports that pitcher Johan Santana was near death. Rumors surfaced over the weekend that the ace lefty, currently recovering from offseason shoulder surgery, had either already expired or was on death’s door.

“Every rehab is different, and discretion is preferable when trying to come back from an injury as difficult as Johan’s,” GM Sandy Alderson told reporters on Monday. “We’re not going to rush anything, but I want to stress that he has had no setbacks so far, and that he is also very much alive.”

On Saturday, unnamed sources close to the Mets’ organization told several beat writers that the team feared Santana would be lost for the season due to his impending death. “If Santana passed away, you probably wouldn’t see him this year,” the source said, “since that would delay his rehab and keep him from seeing major league action until at least September.”

Santana, appearing at the Mets’ spring training facility in corporeal form, repeated Alderson’s denials. “My shoulder’s a little sore, but they tell me that’s typical for this kind of rehab, and I should be long tossing again very soon.” To prove that he was not a ghost, Santana demonstrated his inability to walk through doors.

The team’s main concern is that the surgery Santana underwent last year is similar to that performed on Chien-Ming Wang and Mark Prior, neither of whom have pitched effectively ever since. And while Santana has yet to shuffle off this mortal coil, it would be a big hit to the team’s long-term chances were he to do so. Officials from other teams, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, suspected the Mets are not being entirely truthful, since in the grand scheme of things, each of us has one foot in the grave.

New manager Terry Collins responded to the reports by screaming something unintelligible through a bullhorn.

Warm Thoughts for a Cold Winter: Mini-Camp

Thanks to confluence of various time-crunching factors, I was unable to post my week-daily Warm Thoughts for a Cold Winter story yesterday. So to make up for it, we’ll have a doubleheader today.

My first post will be short but sweet. The Mets have a mini-camp this week, with players like Johan Santana, Oliver Perez, and Daniel Murphy in attendance. What is a mini-camp? I don’t really know, but it seems a lot like high school gym class warmup exercises.

So a small portion of the Mets are in Florida, stretching, long tossing, and doing other calisthenics that only vaguely resemble baseball. At this point in the winter, it’s close enough for me.


Mike and the Mad Dog Fall Down the Memory Hole

December 18, 2007

fran1.jpgSo baseball’s Winter Meetings have concluded, and it looks like the Yankees and the Red Sox are about to get in a bidding war for Johan Santana. And of course, we all know that this will end with #57 in pinstripes, taking his place among the pantheon of
great Yankee hurlers: Whitey Ford, Catfish Hunter, Carl Pavano…

maddog1.jpgMikey, tell you what, Hank Steinbrenner is playing this perfectly. When you’re negotiating with another GM, the best thing to do is change your mind over and over again, and talk about it publicly all the time. There’s absolutely no way that could backfire and make you look like a spoiled three-year-old.

fran1.jpg And the Mets *snicker* say that they’re making a play for Santana, but we all know they don’t have the horses to pull this off. I mean, the Yankees are offering Melky Cabrera, for crying out loud. What Mets prospect could possibly compare to Melky Cabrera?

maddog1.jpgYou’re a thousand percent right, Mikey. The Mets are NOT in the mix here. The only way I see them landing Santana is if the front offices of the Yanks and Sox are destroyed by two separate meteors striking the Earth simultaneously.
fran1.jpg Listen, I’ve been talking with Omar Minaya. I talk with important people all the time. And he told me that the Twins are asking for David Wright, Jose Reyes, and Carlos Beltran’s first born son. And even if he agreed to that deal, there’s still NO WAY that package compares to the Yankees’ offer of Ian Kennedy and some guy in the minors whose name escapes me.

January 15, 2008

fran1.jpgIt’s been pretty quiet in the Hot Stove League, but there’s some rumblings that the Santana sweepstakes could be ending very soon. There’s reports that the Mets have become the favorites to land the lefty, which frankly, I do not believe. I have a LOT of
contacts in the industry, and everyone tells me that the Twins piss on the Mets’ prospects. Literally. I heard Bill Smith sent a jar of his
urine to the New Orleans Zephyrs.

maddog1.jpgMikey, the Mets are NOT gonna spend the kind of money it’ll take to sign Johan Santana. We all know Fred Wilpon passed on Vladimir Guerrero, he passed on A-Rod, I’ve heard he wears socks two days in a row so he won’t have to go to the laundromat. Mark it down: they will sign Livan Hernandez and finish in third place.

fran1.jpgSantana will be a Yankee, make no mistake. I see him now, starting game 7 of the World Series, taking the hill in front of Rudy Giuliani, Billy Crystal, Regis Philbin, Donald Trump, Lebron James, Kevin Federline…

maddog1.jpgThings are looking bad for the Mets next year. I don’t see any way they beat out the Phurlies.

fran1.jpgThe what?

maddog1.jpgThe Phurlies. The Phurladerphio Phurlies.

fran1.jpgThe Phillies . Jeez, how did you ever get a job talking for a living?

maddog1.jpgMikey, I’ve had to do some evil things to get ahead. Black, unspeakable things. But hey, after these commercials, I
yell at an engineer!

January 29, 2008

fran1.jpgSo now we’re hearing that the Mets have landed Santana, which is something I’ve been saying would happen for weeks now. Naturally, Santana wants to be a Yankee, but the Yanks won’t give up their very special prospects. This is a good move by Brian Cashman, showing financial restraint. This is the NEW Yankees, the GROW FROM WITHIN Yankees. If there’s anything Yankees fans want to see, it’s guys just up from triple-A face Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz.

maddog1.jpg Excellent point, Mikey. And I tell you one thing: this is only for the money. There is NO WAY Santana wanted to be a Met. I’m sure someone told him Queens is the same thing as the Bronx. He’s from Minnesota, so he has no idea about different boroughs. And maybe he’s colorblind, so he won’t realize the pinstripes on his uniform aren’t navy blue.

fran1.jpgAlright, let’s go to the phones. Frank is on the cell phone.

cell.jpgMike, did you just say that you’ve been saying Santana’s going to the Mets for weeks? Because I listen to the show every day, and I could swear you said as recently as last week that he’d definitely be a Yankee.

fran1.jpgFrank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank


fran1.jpgFrank, let me finish! Frank Frank Frank Frank Frank.
You there, Frank? Frank, I never wrote off the Mets as players in the Santana race. I have been TOUTING them for WEEKS as MAJOR players! If
you think I didn’t say that, you are LOST!

cell.jpgI am positive that you’ve been saying the exact opposite. And Mad Dog, how can you say Santana didn’t want to be a Met when there’s a bunch of different reports that the Mets were his first choice?

maddog1.jpgFrank, lemme ask you a question: did Paul LoDuca do steroids?

cell.jpgWhat does that have to do with anything we’re talking about?

maddog1.jpgAnswer the question, Frank! Did Paul LoDuca do steroids?

cell.jpgAccording to the Mitchell Report, yes, he did.

maddog1.jpgAnd you, as a Mets fan, used to root for him, am I right?

cell.jpg Yes, I did.

maddog1.jpgSo how can you sit there on your high horse and tell me not to root for Barry Bonds?

cell.jpgI didn’t say a single word about Barry Bonds! But if you don’t believe me about what you guys said last week, go listen to the tapes.

fran1.jpgFrank, I promise you that the tapes will say exactly what we’re saying now. At least as soon as our engineers get through with them.

maddog1.jpg You dare question us? Get this guy off the air! God, what a disgrace! Eddie, you gotta screen these calls better! I’m gonna say some horrible stuff about your wife on the air later!

fran1.jpgFolks, here’s what you gotta understand. When we use a word, it means just what we choose it to mean. So when I wrote off the Mets’ chances last week, I meant that they would land Santana. When I said the Yankees would land Santana, I meant that they would keep their prospects.

maddog1.jpgWar is peace! Work is freedom!

fran1.jpgWe will not be slaves to history, folks. History is a weapon, to be wielded at our command, on our terms.

maddog1.jpgThe Mets are doubleplusungood!

fran1.jpgWe’ll be right back after this word from the Ministry of Truth.