Wednesday, March 22, 2006


Aside from the numerous jokes that arose as a result from Billy Wagner's middle finger, there's no reason to pay this much attention. This is something trainers have seen before and it goes away. Besides, the MRI proved negative. Man, can they get those things quick!.......Victor Zambrano's no-walk performance over five innings yesterday let it be known not only is his back going to be fine, but he's pitching well. If memory serves correctly, the powers that be were impressed in what they saw from Zambrano prior to the WBC. You can be sure that major league scouts noted much the same.......While we're on backs, I want to reiterate that this is why we bring pitchers in early. Its hard to simulate the demands that your back goes through in baseball. Ask anybody who's ever been to fantasy camp about how their back felt. There was usually a fight at the whirlpool to get in. The back muscles in question we refer to as lumbar stabilizers. Most teams now have a vigorous program of exercises for these. Renowned back specialist, Dr. Robert Watkins from Los Angeles has been is a leader in this area of sportsmedicine for over 20 years now and you'll see his name mentioned as someone who gives those second opinions........As I stated in a previous post, Willie Randolph won't need five starters at the beginning, but Martinez may be on a strict pitch count if he starts during the first rotation. If its opening day or game two, I'd look for Aaron Heilman to come in after 80 pitches. Barring trade, I still expect Brain Bannister to start the year in Norfolk to get a regular turn............It seems many pundits like the Oakland A's. If they A's get contend, that would mean Barry Zito isn't going anywhere. Doesn't it? But I often wonder what goes through my old friend, Billy Beane's mind. Way too much late night reading of Bill James, Dude..........I think you saw the batting order yesterday afternoon:
SS: Reyes
cf: Beltran
1B: Delgado
LF: Floyd
3B: Wright
RF: Nady
C: Martinez (Lo Duca)
2B: Hernandez
At the AL park, Randolph used the DH and got some ABs for Julio Franco. There might be some flip-flopping with Wright and Floyd against a lefty. They were facing righty, Kris Benson.........While we're on Benson, if the Mets traded him-partly for the work of his meddlesome wife-I don't balme them. Anna had become a sideshow that sapped energy. To gain publicity she shamelessly inserted herself into her husband's workplace to create a name for herself without regard to what effect it had on anyone. Its called a cancer in sports circles.


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