When I got to my hotel this afternoon, I took a few minutes to walk around Chicago before grabbing a sandwich and heading up to my room for an afternoon of writing off-day and Sunday stories. As I got on the elevator, a couple said goodbye to a guy who had been walking with them, then joined me and pressed the No. 10. After about 10 seconds the woman said this.
“If you decide to hire him, he’s going to have to get rid of those shoes.”
So, if you or someone you know made a questionable footwear decision before interviewing for a job in downtown Chicago this afternoon, that decision did not go unnoticed. Best of luck anyway.
On to a few links on this gorgeous off day in the middle of the country. Most of them have to do with the minor league system. Including some late news out of Scranton where potential September call-up Romulo Sanchez has been placed on the disabled list.
• In Triple-A, closer Jonathan Albaladejo is wrapping his historic season. “He’s marching it up there at 95 and he has a good breaking ball,” Toledo manager and former big leaguer Larry Parrish said. “There’s a big gap between his fastball and his off-speed stuff. But he also has the right makeup. He likes to be out there when the game is on the line.”
• In Double-A, Brandon Laird was named to the Eastern League postseason all-star team. I don’t think anyone in the system has had a bigger breakout year than Laird. It’s already earned him a spot in Triple-A.
• In Low-A, it’s Brett Marshall who’s been producing out of the Charleston rotation. He hasn’t lost since July 26.
• Good stuff over at River Ave. Blues, which looked back and found some familiar questions that haunted the Yankees at this time last year. “I find myself doing this all the time,” Mike Axisa wrote, “saying that this year’s team doesn’t make me feel as confident as last year’s, but you know what? That’s a load of crap. The only reason we feel that way is because we know what happened at the end of last season.”
• The Japanese team from the Little League World Series met with Kei Igawa today. The same thing happened last year, and it was awesome. The Little League World Series is on quite a bit in baseball clubhouses, and those kids were like celebrities when they came through last year. Their shortstop barely came up to my knee, but the kid could play!
• If you haven’t already, check the NoMaas interview with Mark Newman. From the interview, here’s Newman’s take on Jesus Montero’s development behind the plate: “Very well. Better than I had hoped. He’s throwing in the 1.9s consistently with accuracy. He’s receiving well and growing as a game-caller.”
• The White Sox have placed reliever Matt Thornton and J.J. Putz on the disabled list. Not bad timing for the Yankees.
• Speaking of White Sox moves, Chicago is still in on Manny Ramirez, but there’s no deal just yet.
• Apparently I goofed yesterday morning when I mentioned Mark Melancon. I listed his Triple-A stats, but he’s in Houston now and has been a little bit up and down. In seven innings he’s walked four, but all of the walks came in two of his six outings. Half of them came while he threw three scoreless against the Phillies on Tuesday.