The LoHud Yankees Blog

A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Bosch pleads guilty to charges of PED distribution10.16.14

Here’s The Associated Press with the story…

MLB Drug InvestigationMIAMI (AP) — The former owner of a South Florida anti-aging clinic pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of illegally providing performance-enhancing drugs to athletes including high-profile Major League Baseball players, most notably New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez.

Anthony Bosch, former owner of the Biogenesis of America clinic in Coral Gables, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute testosterone before U.S. District Judge Darrin P. Gayles. Bosch, who called himself “Dr. T,” faces a maximum 10-year prison sentence but is likely to get far less because of cooperation with prosecutors and with MLB’s investigation into player drug use.

Defense attorney Guy Lewis said Bosch, 51, provided key information to MLB investigators that led to suspensions of 14 players, including the record season-long suspension handed to Rodriguez for this past year. Bosch also met numerous times with federal prosecutors and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents, Lewis said.

“He was faithful in terms of appearing each and every time he was requested to,” Lewis said. “Each and every time he appeared, answered questions and was available.”

Rodriguez has denied taking illegal substances while with the Yankees but did admit to doing so earlier in his career with the Texas Rangers. He remains on the Yankees’ roster for next season.

MLB previously sued Bosch and his clinic but withdrew the lawsuit in February. The league had accused Bosch and others with conspiring to violate player contracts by providing them with banned substances.

In a plea agreement, Bosch admitted to providing testosterone to baseball players, from professionals to high school athletes. Six other people are charged in the case, and Bosch has agreed to testify against them if they go to trial.

“We are quite satisfied with what he promised he would do,” said Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael “Pat” Sullivan.

Earlier this month, Gayles revoked Bosch’s $100,000 bail because he twice tested positive after his August arrest for cocaine use and had missed appointments at drug treatment programs. On Thursday, Gayles agreed to release Bosch on bail with several new conditions, including a requirement that Bosch attended a 24-hour inpatient drug treatment program.

Prosecutors did not object, and Lewis said Bosch needs the treatment badly.

“You have before you an individual who does need counseling. We recognize that. He’s begging for it,” Lewis said.

When Bosch is not in the treatment program, he will remain on house arrest with electronic monitoring, Gayles said. Sentencing for Bosch is set for Dec. 18.

Associated Press photo

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For your consideration: Chase Headley10.15.14

Chase Headley

Here’s what Brian Cashman said on the day the Yankees traded for Chase Headley:

“Next year is next year. Right now I just kind of frame is as what it is. He’s got an expiring contract that runs through the end of the year. It’s a rental in terms of the acquisition cost, and that’s how we approached it. We’ve taken on some money. We got some money to offset some of the remaining balance of his contract, and they’ve got some players that they can hold onto as they move forward and try to support their future. I can’t predict 2015 and what our needs will or won’t be. That’s not what this is all about. We’re all really focused on the remaining push in 2014 and trying to push through with what we’ve got.”

Truth be told, I can’t imagine that Cashman has any better idea today what his third base needs will or won’t be next season. Alex Rodriguez is still a total wild card, working out in California with no proof of how well he can play baseball in 2015 and beyond. What Cashman does have, though, is a better sense of what Headley is capable of doing and how well he’s able to handle the New York market.

Chase HeadleyDuring his two-plus months with the Yankees, Headley showed himself to be an awfully good fielder, and while he’s certainly not a true power hitter, he came through in big situations and got on base at an impressive rate. He’s most certainly a useful player, and he seems to have found a way to manage the lower-back issue that bothered him in San Diego.

“I feel like I played like me,” Headley said. “Even the month or so before I got traded, I felt like I started play like me, as a player. I feel like (if) I play like me, that’s a good player, and that’s going to be attractive to clubs. I’m glad that I was able to finish out the way that I did, and hopefully things will work out good.”

Going forward, is Headley still a strong fit for the Yankees?

The third base situation is well understood. Best-case scenario is that Rodriguez’s year off has left him healthy and strong, physically able to play third base regularly while contributing to the middle of the order. Worst-case scenario is that a year off, coupled with the recent injuries, has left Rodriguez unable to play the field and unable to be much of a run producer. The Yankees aren’t likely to know which is closer to the truth until spring training, and even then health and durability concerns must linger.

Signing Headley would give the Yankees a quality backup plan at third base. But Headley’s also in position to be paid like an everyday player, so it’s more likely he would lock the Yankees into a plan to use Rodriguez regularly at designated hitter while trusting Carlos Beltran to regularly handle right field. Headley is not the only player who could play that role — Pablo Sandoval is a free agent this winter as are any number of utility types — but Headley brings a comfortable blend of familiarity and experience. He was a useful rental, which makes him a more attractive target.

“I don’t know if they’re going to be interested,” Headley said. “They do have a player under contract. We’ll kinda see how that shakes out. If they do show interest, then there would be mutual interest. But that would be something we’d want to talk about, and see what the role would look like, coming into (next season). Not something that I’d be scared of, but something I’d like to have clarity on, and I’m sure the organization would as well.”

Associated Press photos

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Cashman notes: Long, Kelleher, Rodriguez, Robertson10.10.14

Just a few quick notes and some leftovers from today’s Brian Cashman conference call:

Masahiro Tanaka• Anything Kevin Long could have or should have done differently with this offense? “I think he tried everything in his power,” Cashman said. “By his own assessment, I know when I talked to Kevin today he told me, he was like, ‘Cash, I wouldn’t do anything different, because I tried everything.’ I think Kevin can sleep at night knowing he tried every tool in the toolbox. I know that he publicly stated late in the year that he did everything and tried everything. It wasn’t sufficient, but the effort was sufficient. The results just weren’t.”

• On whether Mick Kelleher was to blame for the Yankees defensive problems in the first half: “That was more personnel-related,” Cashman said. “When we lost players like Cano, for instance, who was an exceptional defender, to free agency; or when we lost Alex to a suspension, for instance. We had Derek Jeter coming back, as well as Mark Teixeira, from injury. Those players possessed a certain amount of ability, and I think Mick addressed that to the best of his abilities. As we were able to acquire better defenders as the season went on and they presented themselves, we obviously improved our team defense. I would not hold Mick Kelleher responsible for any defensive deficiencies. That was personnel related.”

• Interesting comment about the decision to get rid of Kelleher: “There are some individuals, I think, as we move forward, (who) will bring more for the global perspective of the coaching staff.”

• The latest on Alex Rodriguez’s offseason workouts: “Matt Krause, our strength coach, just visited with him yesterday in Miami to continue the process that I talked to you all about in Boston at Fenway Park at the end of the season,” Cashman said. “That we’re going to be reconnecting with Alex, all of our staff. Alex reached out and said, ‘Hey, let’s start proactively doing that.’ That’s what Alex is about. He’s proactive and trying to put himself in the best position to be successful and hit the ground running when he gets reactivated.”

• On whether the Yankees want to bring back Dave Robertson or let Dellin Betances transition into the closer role: “What happens as we move forward with (Robertson) and the qualifying offer is yet to be determined,” Cashman said. “But we thank David, and we’re proud of what he’s done here and how he’s handled himself here. The final decision that has to be made here first and foremost is yet to be made. Because of that I don’t think it’s really fair to speculate on alternatives in house. It’s obviously a tough role, and if you’ve never done it, I’d answer that question the same way I answered it maybe to David’s anguish last year, all winter, where I would not assume that anybody could do that. It’s just not that type of role that you could guarantee someone can easily transition to.”

• Any other coaching changes coming? “These are the moves we’re making,” Cashman said. “And any other moves that we choose to make or want to pursue, obviously we’ll reveal them. If we choose to make any other changes we’ll let you know, otherwise everything is status quo until then.”

Associated Press photo

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Cashman: It’s not safe to assume A-Rod can play third10.10.14

Alex Rodriguez

During today’s conference call to discuss his new three-year contract, Brian Cashman made it clear that he’s approaching this offseason with the assumption that he needs someone other than Alex Rodriguez to play third base.

That might mean a free agent addition, might mean a trade acquisition, and it might mean a decision to trust either Rob Refsnyder or Jose Pirela to handle second base so that Martin Prado can shift over to third.

“I don’t think it’s safe to assume that (Rodriguez) can play third base,” Cashman said. “Obviously Alex has been a third baseman in years gone by. He missed obviously a full year. With his age and missing a full year, (the Yankees saw) how it affected Derek (Jeter), how it affected Mark Teixeira, for instance. You have some perspective. This is a very difficult game. Alex is up for that challenge, there’s no doubt about it, but I think that with Martin Prado here to provide flexibility, as well as potential acquisitions whether it’s free agents or maybe trades that present themselves over time, I think from the chair that I sit in, I think it’s safer to assume that might not be something that he can handle the whole year.”

So Rodriguez could be the third baseman, but it’s safer for the Yankees to proceed as if he might have to be a designated hitter (one who might be able to help out at first base from time to time).

“I’m open to pursuing third base options is what I’m saying,” Girardi said. “Alex can help us as an everyday third baseman, he can help us in a DH role, and I know Joe Girardi conveyed to me that he talked to him recently about getting some work at first base. … I’m just airing that I’m open to all options, and that could be from our own roster where we have two guys like a Refsnyder or a Pirela could be competing from our system for that everyday job at second, and maybe that pushes Prado over to third. It could be some free agent candidates, like some we have here like a Chase Headley that we could pursue. It could be other options.”

Associated Press photo

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State of the organization: Third base10.09.14

A-Rod Season  Baseball

Well, we were going to get here eventually. Might as well deal with it on a random Thursday in early October. The state of the Yankees organization at third base is a strange mix of embarrassing uncertainty in the big leagues and optimistic potential in the minors. The Yankees have a first-round pick waiting in the wings to replace a 10-year contract that stands out as one of the worst in all of sports.

RodriguezAlex Rodriguez
Signed through 2017
Nope, you didn’t read that wrong. Rodriguez turns 40 in July, he’s hardly played in the past two years, and he’s signed for three more seasons. That’s the lingering mess of a 2008 contract that’s been nothing but trouble. Amazingly, Rodriguez’s previous record contract had actually been a fairly good one. In 2007 he won his third MVP award in five seasons. He was paid a boatload of money, but he was as productive as anyone this side of Barry Bonds. Then he opted out, negotiated a new deal, and things went downhill quickly. From a .965 OPS in 2008 to a .771 OPS in an injury-shortened 2013, Rodriguez’s production has declined each year of his current deal. And last year he was suspended for a full season because of his Biogensis ties (you probably heard about that). Now the Yankees say they’re expecting Rodriguez to play third base again next season, but there’s obviously a solid chance someone else has that job pretty soon.

HeadleyOn the verge
Chase Headley
No sense pretending there’s someone in the Yankees system who’s truly “on the verge” of taking over the third-base job. Jose Pirela has played third base in the past, but he didn’t play a single inning at the position this year. Rob Segedin is the system’s most advanced third base prospect, but he’s had injury problems and hit just .143 in limited Triple-A at-bats this year. Zelous Wheeler is a third baseman by trade, but he’s also a DFA candidate. Adonis Garcia and Tyler Austin have some third base experience, but they’re primarily corner outfielders. Instead, the most ready alternatives are either Martin Prado (assuming either Pirela or Rob Refsnyder is ready to play second base) or a free agent, and the most notable free agent is Headley, who made a strong impression during his two-plus months with the Yankees. Given the uncertainty of Rodriguez and the injuries to Mark Teixeira, the Yankees surely need someone capable of playing the infield corners. If it’s not Headley, it’s got to be someone. Prado could do it, but that’s going to require someone else who can play second.

JagieloTop prospect
Eric Jagielo
In two of the past four drafts, the Yankees took a third baseman with their top pick. They took Dante Bichette Jr. out of high school back in 2011. Two years later, they took Jagielo out of Notre Dame. Despite a bounce-back season from Bichette, it still seems that Jagielo has to be considered the system’s top third-base prospect. He struck out a lot this season — 93 times in 85 games with High-A Tampa — but he also might have led the league in home runs had he not missed time with an injury. He instead ranked fifth with 16 homers. Only one player in the league had more than 19. “Jagielo hit home runs in college,” Mark Newman said. “He probably hit more and exhibited more power than we had anticipated, but we thought he had power.” While I would give Jagielo the nod as the system’s top third base prospect, Bichette had a nice year after back-to-back disappointing seasons. He wasn’t nearly as good after a late promotion to Double-A, but he did enough to get back on the map. If he can rediscover some of the power numbers he showed during his strong half season in 2011, Bichette could really make a push next year.

AndujarDeeper in the system
Miguel Andujar
Two top draft picks headline the third base position in the Yankees minor league system, but two young players signed out of the Dominican Republic had nice years in the lower levels. Andujar in particular stands out as an interesting and legitimate prospect. Playing full-season ball for the first time, Andujar got off to a slow start with Low-A Charleston — a brutal month of May left him with a .212/.267/.335 slash line at the All-Star break, but he rebounded in a big way by hitting .319/.367/.456 in the second half. Still just 19 years old, Andujar’s a kid with a long way to go, but he put up good numbers in rookie ball last year, and this season’s second half was another step forward. Coming up behind Andujar, a 21-year-old named Allen Valerio hit .292/.404/.472 in his first season in the U.S., but he was pretty old for rookie ball.

AustinWorth consideration
An outfielder in the infield
While the Yankees don’t have a full-time third base prospect who’s knocking on the door to the big leagues, they do have Tyler Austin who’s likely to land on the 40-man roster this offseason and should open next season in Triple-A. Converted to right field back in 2012, Austin really hasn’t played much third base lately, but he’s played the position in the past and he got a little bit of time at third last season. After a strong second half and an assignment back to the Arizona Fall League, Austin should be one of the top prospects on the Scranton/Wilkes-Barer roster next season. If he hits, the Yankees might have to find a way to give Austin an opportunity in New York, and third base could be a way to do that either as a regular or part-time player at the position. A right-handed corner utility man would fit pretty well with this roster, and Austin could be that type of player if the Yankees still trust him in the infield.

Associated Press photo

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Week in review: First week of a long offseason10.05.14

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This was the first week of the offseason, and it was full of stuff pretty typical of the first week of the offseason. Most notably, both Hal Steinbrenner and Joe Girardi spoke publicly about their disappointment.

“I apologize,” Steinbrenner said. “We did not do the job this year. We know what you expect of us, and we expect the same thing of ourselves, and we certainly did what we thought we could do in the offseason to field a pretty good team come April 1, but it didn’t work out for reasons we’ve just discussed. And we’re going to get right back to work.”

Getting back to work begins with hiring a general manager. Brian Cashman’s contract expires at the end of this month, but all parties involved seem to expect a new deal to be worked out. Steinbrenner acknowledged that he and Cashman have already discussed a new deal.

“Overall, everything Cashman does — dealing with you guys (in the media), dealing with the coaches and the manager — he is a good GM,” Steinbrenner said. “So, yes, we have been talking about that, but there is no deal done.”

Steinbrenner was less supportive of the Yankees coaching staff, indicating it’s possible we’ll see some coaching changes this winter.

“If I do deem that somebody is liable,” Steinbrenner said. “Or if I do deem that somebody is responsible, that things could have been better, I will act.”

Alex Rodriguez• Both Girardi and Steinbrenner indicated — just as Brian Cashman did last week — that the Yankees plan to bring Alex Rodriguez back next season, and they’re hoping to have him play a lot of third base. Rodriguez is working out in California, but he’s missed all of one year and most of another. Hard to have any idea what to expect.

• As expected, Carlos Beltran underwent surgery to have his bone spur removed. Dr. Chris Ahmad also removed loose pieces from the elbow.

• Derek Jeter wrapped up his Farewell Tour — he might not like the name, but that’s clearly what it was at the end — but doing a pair of television interviews, first with a morning appearance on Today and then with an evening appearance on The Tonight Show. Nothing new revealed, just Jeter being a retired celebrity. He’s honestly pretty good in those situations.

• Bigger news from Jeter came in his announcement that he has started an online media platform called The Players’ Tribune, which is designed to give athletes a chance to present their thoughts without the filter of typical media. Interesting idea. We’ll see how it plays out.

• Eric Jagielo will have to skip the Arizona Fall League after being hit by a pitch to the face during instructs. He’s been replaced by Dante Bichette Jr.

• Speaking of the Fall League, baseball is going to try some new pace-of-game initiatives out there. I like the idea. Shaving game times by just 15 minutes or so would be a positive thing for the league.

• Brett Gardner was announced as the Yankees nominee for the Hank Aaron Award, which goes to the top offensive player in each league. Says a lot about the kind of season Gardner had, but also about the kind of season the rest of the Yankees hitters had.

• A possible offseason target, Cuban outfielder Yasmany Tomas, became an eligible free agent. Would be an chance to add power potential for right field. Obvious risk, though.

• The playoffs got started. Some awesome nights for the Kansas City Royals. Not such good nights for Joba Chamberlain.

Associated Press photos

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Girardi on A-Rod: “We expect him to be our third baseman”09.29.14

Alex Rodriguez, Derek JeterSays a lot about the state of the Yankees that much of manager Joe Girardi’s end-of-season press conference focused on a player who didn’t play a single inning this year. For a team loaded with unpredictability, Alex Rodriguez is as significant as anyone.

“We’ve got to see where he’s at,” Girardi said. “That’s the thing that we have to do. I believe he’s going to be 40 next summer, and we’ve got to see where he’s physically at and if he can play the field, how many days he can play the field and how many days he needs to DH. So I don’t think really any of us know about him until we actually get him into games in spring training.”

That can’t be a particularly comfortable feeling for a team that’s also facing significant uncertainty in the rotation (Tanaka’s elbow, Sabathia’s knee, Pineda’s shoulder), in the bullpen (is Robertson coming back), in the heart of the order (Beltran’s elbow, Teixeira’s wrist, McCann’s first half), and all around the infield (who’s playing second, third and short).

Maybe Rodriguez simply fits in already. Another wild card for a team full of them.

“He hasn’t played in a year,” Girardi said. “That’s not easy to do, to sit out a year. I’ve got to see where he’s physically at. I’ve got to see from a playing standpoint where he’s at. Do we expect him to be a player on our team? Absolutely. Do we expect him to play third base? Yes. But in fairness, I think you have to see where he’s at.”

It’s going to take a while to figure out what Rodriguez is capable of doing, and the Yankees surely won’t have an answer until sometime during spring training at the earliest. That means an offseason with Rodriguez on the roster — his suspension official ends after the World Series — and in the projected lineup, but with no real idea of what exactly he’ll be capable of doing.

“I can’t tell you whats going to happen,” Girardi said. “But we expect him to be our third baseman.”

Associated Press photo

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Pregame notes: Tanaka takes next small step in throwing program08.13.14

Masahiro Tanaka

This is a big day for the Yankees rotation.

At least, it might be a big day for the Yankees rotation.

Not only is Michael Pineda making his first big league start in more than three months, but even before tonight’s first pitch, Masahiro Tanaka went into the outfield and threw 10 flat-ground fastballs. That’s a pretty small step, but it’s the most significant step yet in his return from a partially torn elbow ligament.

“Pain’s gone,” is the phrase Wally Matthews heard.

At this stage, it’s basically impossible for Tanaka to do anything that proves he’s in the clear and will definitely return to the Yankees rotation without needing Tommy John surgery. For now, the best the Yankees can hope for is that he doesn’t suffer a setback. And so far he hasn’t. We’re squarely into no news is good news territory, and right now it seems that Tanaka has no real news to report.

He’s a Major League pitcher who’s playing catch and throwing a few pitches off flat ground. As long as it goes well, none of this is a particularly big deal. It’s all just a series of steps in the right direction. It becomes a big deal when he either progresses to game action or suffers some sort of setback that shuts down the whole process.

Orioles Yankees Baseball• Although the Yankees originally announced a rotation that had Chris Capuano starting on Sunday, Hiroki Kuroda told reporters in Baltimore that he’s actually taking the ball that day. The Yankees seem to be clearly — and understandably — trying to give Kuroda a little bit of a rest in hopes of avoiding a late-season crash like they’ve seen in recent years.

• Joe Girardi told reporters that he expects Brian McCann to come off the disabled list on Saturday. McCann has been on the seven-day concussion DL.

• Pineda returns to the rotation tonight. He hasn’t pitched in the big leagues since April 23, the day he was ejected for using pine tar. Most pitches he threw during his minor league rehab assignment was 72 on Friday, so there’s basically no chance he’ll be cleared for anything particularly close to 100 pitches tonight.

• To open a roster spot for Pineda, Chris Leroux has been designated for assignment. What is this, three big league call-ups for Leroux this season? He’s been one of several guys shuttling back and forth to give the Yankees a long man when they need it. And the Yankees have needed it quite a bit because they’ve struggled to get much distance out of their starting pitchers.

• The Orioles have put third baseman Manny Machado on the disabled list with a knee injury. He hurt himself during Monday’s game against the Yankees. Chris Davis is back at third base for Baltimore.

• Speaking of Baltimore, from our friend Marly Rivera, here’s Orioles manager Buck Showalter on whether Pineda will be using pine tar tonight: “I’m hoping he’s got a little (pine tar) in the right place, YOU try gripping the ball in some of this weather.” It’s been said over and over again, but the problem with Pineda in Boston wasn’t so much that he was using pine tar, it was the fact he was being so blatant about it after the Red Sox had already looked the other way once.

• Clubhouse good guy Shawn Kelley did the Ice Bucket Challenge today and challenged Tanaka, CC Sabathia and Felix Hernandez to do the same. Dan Barbarisi pointed out yesterday that Kelley lost his grandfather to ALS, so it’s pretty cool that he’s jumping into the recent trend.

• At the owner’s meeting to discuss the next commissioner, Hal Steinbrenner told Michael O’Keeffe that he expects to have Alex Rodriguez back in the Yankees lineup next season. That’s settled. I’m sure we won’t hear another word about it.

Associated Press photo

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Yankees postgame: Swept away by the Rays/Sabathia’s rehab start07.02.14

Brian McCann

 

Well, this series didn’t go too well for the Yankees. The last-place Rays have been playing better, but still …

The Yankees sure weren’t expecting to get swept by them. The 6-3 win gave Tampa Bay a season-high five-game winning streak and the Yankees a season-high five-game losing streak.

They are now a losing team for the first time since they were 5-6 on April 11. After nine losses in 11 games, they are 41-42 and 4 1/2 back of the Blue Jays.

“The talent is in that room,” Joe Girardi said. “We just need to play better. It’s a lot of different phases. You can look at almost every phase and say we need to play better. We’ve got to find a way to get it done.”

The run production is the most glaring phase right now. The Yankees had 10 hits. They left nine on base. The RISP count was an RIP count — 1 for 9.

“Obviously offense has been an issue,” hitting coach Kevin Long said. “It’s been an issue all season. We’ve got to turn it around somehow. … It’s not for a lack of effort.”

Long indicated that Carlos Beltran (two singles) and Brian McCann (single, solo homer) appear to be making progress. McCann (seen in the photo above executing his home-run swing) eliminated a toe tap from his mechanics in this game, according to Long. Apparently it helped. McCann was happy to produce.

But as he put it, “When you lose, it’s irrevelent.”

The Yankees also finished a 15-game stretch against the AL East.

“It started off good and ended bad,” Girardi said.

It ended at 6-9.

“I thought you were going to say 2-13,” said Brett Gardner, who tied his career high with his eighth homer and is batting .288 overall after this three-hit game. “We just haven’t played good.”

So it’s on to 11 straight on the road before the All-Star break. It starts Thursday night in Minnesota.

“We’ve got to pick each other up,” Gardner said. “We’ve got to pitch better and we’ve got to hit better and find a way to give our pitchers the lead a lot more often.”

CC Sabathia made his second rehab start Wednesday night, this one at Trenton. The lefty threw 33 of his 55 pitches for strikes in 3 2/3 against Portland. He gave up five runs, three of them earned, five hits and one walk. He hit one batter and struck out two.

Alex Rodriguez is back in the news. Sports Illustrated has an excerpt from a new book claiming MLB gave A-Rod permission to use a PED – testosterone – through a therapeutic use exemption in his MVP season of 2007.

MLB countered with a statement:

“All decisions regarding whether a player shall receive a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) under the Joint Drug Program are made by the Independent Program Administrator (IPA) in consultation with outside medical experts, with no input by either the Office of the Commissioner or the Players Association.  The process is confidentially administered by the IPA, and MLB and the MLBPA are not even made aware of which players applied for TUEs.

“The TUE process under the Joint Drug Program is comparable to the process under the World Anti-Doping Code.  The standard for receiving a TUE for a medication listed as a performance-enhancing substance is stringent, with only a few such TUEs being issued each year by the IPA.  MLB and the MLBPA annually review the TUE process to make sure it meets the most up-to-date standards for the issuance of TUEs.

“As recommended by the Mitchell Report, since 2008 MLB and the MLBPA have publicly issued the IPA’s annual report, which documents how many TUEs were granted for each category of medication.  We believe this high level of transparency helps to ensure the proper operation of the TUE process.”

Photo by The Associated Press

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Yankees postgame: On to Boston/New hitter coming08.15.13

Chris NelsonThe Yankees seemed more encouraged than unhappy after this 8-4 loss ended their four-game winning streak and prevented them from sweeping four from the Angels. The Yankees should have done more with 15 hits and three walks, but the lineup is at least more formidable now with Curtis Granderson, Alex Rodriguez and especially Alfonso Soriano.

Those three weren’t around when the Yankees dropped two of three at Fenway last month. They will start another three-game series there Friday night.

“I think it’s a different club,” Joe Girardi said. “The way we’re swinging the bats, it’s a much different club.”

The Yankees were nine back of the Red Sox heading into Thursday night’s play.

“We’re the team that’s chasing them now,” Granderson said. “So it’s going to be a very big three-game series, not the fact that’s it’s a Boston and Yankees series, but the fact that we can gain a lot of ground. It’s very important for us. We have to also be cautious that they can also create a lot of ground, too.”

They have another power-hitting bat on the way, according to Jon Heyman at CBSSports.com and some others Thursday night. The word from them is the Yankees have agreed to terms with Mark Reynolds. The righty batter, of course, is known for homering and striking out. But he can back up at third and platoon with Lyle Overbay at first. When the Indians designated Reynolds last week, he was at .215 with 15 homers, 48 RBI and 123 strikeouts. He has been cold in the homer department, none since June 28. He batted .098 in July. Your thoughts?

The Yankees delivered 46 hits in these last three games. They batted .366 and scored 31 runs in the four games.

Soriano had four singles and an RBI in this game and went 10 for 14 and drove in 14 in the last three. That was a major-league high for RBI in one series this season.  The last Yankee with at least 14 RBI in a series of any length was named Joe DiMaggio, who knocked in 14 in a six-game series vs. the Indians in 1938.

“The last three games, I’ve been hitting the ball good and seeing the ball good,” Soriano said.

Phil Hughes finally showed some improvement after failing to get through five in his previous three starts. He allowed three runs and six hits over six, but he fell to 4-12.

“It was obviously better,” Hughes said. “It would’ve been hard to pitch much worse than I had been.”

Girardi said that until he hears more about it from MLB, he didn’t want to comment on the new manager’s challenge rules for replay that will go into effect next season if the owners, players association and umpires approve.

Associated Press photo.

 

 

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