Some sad news, the Yankees passed along word that bench coach Tony Pena’s mother, Rosalia Padilla Pena, passed away in the Dominican Republic. She was 79 years old, and the funeral will be tomorrow in the town of Altamira.
Some other notes and links from today.
• Justin Duchscherer shot down the idea that his past issues with depression might cause him problems in New York. “I find it funny that people say I can’t pitch in that environment, but I’ve pitched in New York before,” he told Brittany Ghiroli. “As far as my mind, I have no problem being anywhere. Physically it’s a matter of what’s the best situation for me.” Duchscherer also said he much prefers to start and wants to sign with a team that will give him that chance. The Yankees can certainly offer that opportunity.
• Linked to the Yankees strictly through speculation as a possible trade target, Wandy Rodriguez has signed a three-year deal with the Astros.
• The Yankees did reportedly sign one pitcher today, agreeing to a minor league deal with Warner Madrigal.
• The Blue Jays makeover continued today when they shipped nearly acquired Mike Napoli to the Rangers for reliever Frank Francisco. Speaking of the Blue Jays changes, Vernon Wells bid an emotional goodbye to the franchise.
• Interesting stuff over at The Hardball Times, where Chris Jaffe looked at the worst playoff game endings, including two Yankees games.
• Remember when Chris Ray was a promising young closer? Today he signed a minor league deal with the Mariners.
• The International League announced the 2011 inductees into its Hall of Fame: Steve Balboni, Wade Boggs and Cal Ripken Jr. Balboni and Boggs are both former Yankees. For the purposes of the IL, Balboni is most closely connected to the organization, having hit 92 home runs in three years with the Columbus Clippers. Balboni is the only player in IL history to homer twice in one inning in two different games.
• I had to stop listening long enough to hear Michael Kay’s interview with Brian Cashman, but I’ve spent most of the day listening to the new Decemberists and Iron & Wine albums. Good stuff, especially from the Decemberists, who didn’t do much for me with their previous album.