Andre Ethier stirred it up in spring training when he said this season could be his last with the Dodgers. Ethier, who is in the final season of a two-year $15.25 million deal, recognized that the Dodgers could trade or non-tender him after the year. SI MLB reporter Jon Heyman added to that story writing that several sources close to Ethier say the outfielder is growing tired of the atmosphere in Los Angeles.
From Heyman’s article:
“Andre’s a really great guy, but he can be a little moody,” one other person close to Ethier said. “Of all the guys this is going to affect, it’s Andre. All the b.s. around the club will affect him more than other players. He’s a prideful guy. He’s lost respect for the organization.
“He loves L.A.,” the person continued. “But he wants to play for a winner.”
Heyman adds that morale generally is at an alltime low among the team’s employees, so it’s no surprise anyone associated with the franchise would feel that way. Plus, if you don’t believe Ethier is moody, I’ll refer you to these pictures.
The other point from Heyman’s article is that Ethier would be interested in joining the Red Sox to play with college teammate Dustin Pedroia.
Even though I think Ethier needs to get out of Los Angeles, I don’t think Boston would be a good fit for him. Talent aside, Ethier can be a head case and that would not be a good mix for the rabid Boston media. Regardless, this is just another reason why Frank McCourt needs to be stripped of the Dodgers.
Jets rookie defensive lineman Kenrick Ellis is in a legal mess that could result in his deportation. Rich Cimini reports (via Evan Silva) that the third-round pick out of Hampton is not a U.S. Citizen, therefore his malicious wounding for allegedly attacking another student could result in his deportation. According to immigration law, a permanent resident (which Ellis is) convicted of an aggravated felony is deportable.
Ellis was indicted a month before the draft and faces up to 20 years in prison. Cimini says “Ellis’ best move is to negotiate a plea bargain before he gets to court. The key is to make sure that any plea arrangement isn’t classified as an aggravated assault and carries less than a one-year sentence, suspended or otherwise.”
In the meantime, Ellis received continuance for his trial which was rescheduled for late November. His attorney is likely to request another continuance so this won’t be dealt with until after the NFL season is over.
If there’s anything history has shown us, it’s that the courts tend to show athletes leniency. My guess is Ellis will plead guilty to lesser charges and avoid deportation.
Gavel knock to Pro Football Talk for the story
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- Kenrick Ellis
Remember the story of Isayah Muller, the star running back from Truman High School in The Bronx? Muller was fatally stabbed during a fight a few hours after his graduation. The fight was with a few parking attendants who Muller’s father, Andre Muller, believed had stolen a $200 bottle of cologne that was a graduation present. The attendants hadn’t been charged with murder which angered many people. Police had said they were acting in self defense. Now we all know that was the case.
My FOX New York obtained the security footage of the fight and you can clearly see that Andre Muller is the aggressor and largely responsible for his son’s death. Here is the video:
Wow, it probably will be a difficult time for Andre Muller sitting in jail knowing he’s responsible for his son’s death. Did we also mention that he “did two lengthy stretches in prison: one from 1992 to 1997 for armed robbery and another from 2000 to 2006 for selling heroin to an undercover cop,” according to Fox 5? He is one shady dude.
Seriously, who goes to war like that over a $200 bottle of cologne? Better yet, who pays $200 for a bottle of cologne?
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- High School
It was reported in June that Alex Rodriguez and Cameron Diaz had broken up. Diaz seemed to be particularly bothered by the split, saying she loved A-Rod too much. But maybe a psychological ploy by Diaz helped get the Yankees third baseman back.
Star magazine (via OK Magazine) says the two broke up during the spring because Cameron wanted to settle down while A-Rod waffled on the matter. So what did Cameron do to get A-Rod back? She intentionally got cozy with ex-flame Justin Timberlake at the June 20th premiere of Bad Teacher.
Star says the plan worked.
“Alex’s ego has been bruised,” the source told the magazine. “He was afraid she’d dump him for Justin, so he’s making amends. Cam didn’t want to play games with him, but she has Alex exactly where she wants him.”
So does this mean the two are back together? Seems like that may be the case. And what else would this tell us if it’s true? That A-Rod is easily influenced, as we already knew. Though I still believe the real reason for their breakup was really this.
David Ortiz and Kevin Gregg got into the baseball fight of the season Friday night. The tension began early in the 8th inning at-bat when Ortiz stared out at Gregg after the first pitch was thrown inside. The next pitch was also inside. Ortiz pointed at Gregg and took a few steps towards him, causing both dugouts to clear. After things were settled, Gregg got Ortiz to fly out, sparking this brawl:
Given all the swinging and missing, I’m surprised this didn’t happen at a Padres-Nationals game. Seriously though, that’s easily our best baseball fight of the year (not counting this awesome minor league brawl). Few fights will top the high school football brawl we posted this week, but that is close, in terms of baseball fights.
Kevin Gregg and David Ortiz were both ejected as you could imagine. Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Jim Johnson also got tossed. Suspensions should be expected as well.
Video via Jose3030
UPDATE: The Orioles players seemed to be most upset by Ortiz swinging 3-0 in a 10-3 game.
Unless it turns out that Shaq’s retirement was nothing more than a marketing scheme and he returns for another season, the NBA will have lost two of it’s biggest (literally) players in one offseason. On Friday, it was reported that Yao Ming would be retiring after nine NBA seasons.
In his first three seasons in the NBA, Yao never played less than 80 games. It looked as though the 7’6″ center would become one of the most dominant players in the NBA. There were times when he was an unstoppable force and one of the best game-changers in the league. From 2005-2008, injuries resulted in Yao never being able to play more than 57 games in a season. A couple years ago we wondered if the big man might be too large to enjoy a long career, and it turns out we were right.
Yao’s career stats are good — 19 points, 9.2 rebounds per game — but in the end it was clear that he would never be healthy enough to be the same player he was four years ago. However, there is no denying Yao will go down as a huge contributor to the globalization of the game of basketball. The supersized center made the NBA popular in China and made basketball as relevant as it can be overseas.
His career will likely go down as a disappointment in the sense that he could have been a great player if healthy, but I think we can all agree Ming’s contributions were hardly limited to the court.
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- Yao Ming
Those of us who have watched the Home Run Derby in the past are familiar with the concept of the gold ball. When a batter is down to his last out, the gold balls are put into play and every homer that is hit with a gold ball means a certain amount is donated to charity. This year, State Farm will donate $18,000 to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America for each gold ball homer that is hit. Along with benefiting charity, the gold balls will also be a great snag for the lucky fans who catch them considering they are made with actual gold.
The balls will be infused with 24-karat gold leather and are worth about $150 each. I wonder if this will lead to more agressiveness in the stands. People opt for sitting in the outfield at the Home Run Derby for the chance to catch a home run ball. The mystique was already there to begin with, but what will the nut jobs do now that its actual gold they’re trying to get their hands on? Maybe a couple swings will be thrown. To Bud Selig’s credit, it’s one more reason to tune into an event that most find to be extremely boring and by no means a must-see.
H/T to Big League Stew for the picture.
- Home Run Derby
Anyone who watches FOX Saturday baseball on a regular basis knows that Tim McCarver provides some of the strangest commentary possible. The TV show Family Guy parodied him with this sad but hilarious clip that explains everything.
Even when McCarver isn’t providing analysis on games, he’s providing shoddy commentary on baseball.
In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, McCarver said that the attention paid to Albert Pujols has helped Prince Fielder. Seriously. Can’t make this stuff up.
“There has been so much emphasis put on Pujols and the Cardinals, that this has allowed Prince to relax and have a terrific year this year, unlike Albert,” McCarver said during a telephone interview. “I think Albert has taken the heat for first basemen of his ilk, and Prince is the primary one.”
“I don’t think Prince feels it like Albert does,” McCarver said. “Players deny that, but from the way I see it, I think you certainly can make a case for it. That’s one of the reasons Prince has been allowed to play as well as he’s played. All the talk has been deflected from him. It’s allowed him to play the way he can play.”
Who had the better boob grab, that Red Sox fan, or this Phillies fan? The Phillies fan went Big Red and made it last a little longer, so he may get the nod. The big difference is the Sawx fan did it without knowing he was on TV, which makes it pretty awesome. My how the Brian Urlacher influence is spreading.
Thanks to It’s Always Sunny in Detroit for the find
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366 days after Rangers fan Tyler Morris fell at the Ballpark in Arlington going for a foul ball, another fan did the same thing. The difference is when Shannon Stone lost his balance and fell over the railing, it cost him his life. Here is the tragic video:
The man who died is Shannon Stone (pictured below), who has been a firefighter for nearly 18 years in Brownsville, Texas. As if the story isn’t tragic enough, this detail will truly make your heart break.