...On Tuesday, Atlanta Braves GM John Schuerholz announced to the baseball world that the team would not seek to resign center fielder Andruw Jones, who, until now, has played all of his eleven Major League seasons in a Braves uniform.
(A story should follow tomorrow that the Yankees, Red Sox, White Sox, Cubs, Angels, Giants and Dodgers are interested in his services, maybe Texas too, is that all of the BIG money teams?)
A Jones, a thirty-year-old defensive highlight machine, struggled mightily at the plate in his contract year, at least in terms of batting average, since Jones managed to collect 26 HR's and 94 RBI's while batting .222 on the year, his lowest total since his first full season in the Majors, when he batted .231 in 399 at bats in 1997.
The native of Willemstad, Curacao, Andruw Rudolf Jones was signed by Atlanta as a sixteen-year-old Amateur Free Agent, and three years later he was in center field where he would stay for the next decade, during which he hit .263 with 368 HR's, and 1,117 RBI's as a Brave, appearing twice for Atlanta in losing efforts in the World Series to the New York Yankees in '96 and '99.
I asked my brother Scout, Braves Fan and Source For All Things Baseball for his feelings on Andruw Jones' departure:
(after a disgusted face)- "Move over Johnny Damon...move over Melky Cabrera...whoever's playing center on the Yankees."
Scout didn't look happy, but he did provide a quote. Thanks, Scout.
A new stadium, a need to fill it, a need in center (where Nook Logan and Ryan Church have yet to set themselves apart as the everyday starter), Justin Maxwell still looks "green," Chris Marrero's name hasn't been seriously mentioned...
Can the Nationals even consider the kind of 5 year/$20 million-per contract Andruw Jones and his agent Scott Boras are going to be seeking? Do the Nationals need a 30-year-old, who just went through a season long struggle at the plate, but still drove in more runs than any Washington Nationals player?...
... *the following item was provided by an "Unnamed Source" who may or may not be a Mets season ticket holder, and it also appeared in the Newark Star Ledger's "Sports" section, where it was reprinted from the New York Mets original press release.*
"Dear Mets Fan:
All of us at the Mets are bitterly disappointed in failing to
achieve our collective goal of building upon last year's
success. We did not meet our organization's expectations--
or yours. Everyone at Shea feels the same range of emotions
as you -- our loyal fans -- and we know that we have let you
down. We wanted to thank you for your record-breaking
support of our team this year.
Equally important, Ownership will continue its commitment in
providing the resources necessary to field a championship
team. Omar will be meeting with Ownership shortly to
present his plan on addressing our shortcomings so that we
can achieve our goal of winning championships in 2008 and
You deserve better results.
Many thanks again for your record-breaking support."
And Please! Don't let this stop you from ordering tickets
for next season and 2009!! Please!(OK I made up this last
paragraph myself, the rest is for real though).
...I for one would feel uplifted if I were a Mets fan. Question: Did the Nationals apologize to their fans for not winning? I know for sure the Expos NEVER apologized for anything? At least the Mets know their fans, because every Mets fan I knew was already making World Series plans. I wonder if the Mets have written one of these every year from '86 on? Alright enough Mets bashing...
TIME TO CELEBRATE!!!!!!!!
Washington Nationals first baseman Dmitri Young was named the NL's Comeback Player of the Year by Major League Baseball's beat writers. Citing Young's struggles to first earn a spot as a free agent signed to a Minor League deal before Spring Training, and his subsequent success on the field, where DY connected for 3 HR's and 74 RBI's while batting .320 on the season, and earning himself a two-year deal from the Nationals.
The award couldn't go to a more deserving individual. D-Y, D-Y, D-Y!!!