The week’s most significant Yankees event happened behind closed doors, where Alex Rodriguez resumed his appeal hearing against Major League Baseball. Rob Manfred, MLB’s chief operating officer, testified last week, and the hearing is scheduled to resume in the middle of next month.
We’ve heard only limited details coming out of the hearing, and the bulk of the noise has come from the street outside the league office where the group Hispanics Across America has been demonstrating in support of Rodriguez.
On Friday, the group took out a full-page ad in The New York Times. The ad had a picture of Bud Selig with a headline reading: “Who is Public Enemy No. 1 in Baseball?”
“Bud Selig is a disgrace to the game, to the players and to our children,” the ad said. “He turned a blind eye on issues involving HGH and steroids until Hispanics Across America delivered three caskets to his door steps with a name and date of birth in 2004. Willful blindness should be punishable and Bud Selig and his executives have not been punished. Why? That’s why we are fighting for justice for Alex Rodriguez.”
The league fired back with a comment from Manfred to The Associated Press.
“Every person who’s ever given a dime to Hispanics Across America ought to be asking why that organization spent $100,000 on an ad attacking the executive who has done more to rid professional sports of performance-enhancing drugs than any other and supporting an admitted drug user,” Manfred said.
• The FOX documentary BEING: Mariano will air today at either 2:30 p.m. or 4:30 p.m. — gonna have to check your local listings — showing a lot of behind-the-scenes moments from Rivera’s final season. Should be pretty cool.
• Rivera’s not coming back, but pitching coach Larry Rothschild is. Mark Feinsand reported that Rothschild has basically finished his contract negotiations and a new deal could be announced soon. Brian Cashman made it clear at his end-of-the-season press conference that he expected to bring back the entire coaching staff.
• The offseason’s first significant signing came late Thursday night when news broke of the White Sox agreement with Cuban first baseman Jose Abreu. The Yankees never seemed to be in the market for Abreu, but there is speculation about whether Abreu’s six-year, $68-million deal will impact Masahiro Tanaka’s asking price.
• The hot stove began to heat up with a report of mutual interest between the Yankees and free-agent-to-be Carlos Beltran, who could fill a significant power void if Curtis Granderson hits the open market. Among the Yankees other potential offseason targets is catcher Brian McCann, who reportedly could get as much as six years and $100 million as one of the best bats on the market.
• The Yankees re-signed experienced reliever David Herndon to a minor league contract. He has big league time with the Phillies, and could be a dark horse candidate to win a bullpen job in spring training (or to at least serve as mid-season depth out of Triple-A). Infielders Jose Pirela and Jose Toussen also re-signed minor league contracts.
• The first part of Rodriguez’s lawsuit against Major League Baseball — not the appeal, the “witch hunt” accusation — was pushed back. It was supposed to start with a conference this coming Thursday. It will now begin on November 7.
Associated Press photos