Tuesday Grab Bag


The Rocket That Fell To Earth

Big excerpt from Jeff Pearlman’s new book on Roger Clemens, The Rocket That Fell to Earth, on Fox Sports, which has a lot of juicy Jays stuff– and I don’t mean the rolling papers. Most of it we already knew, but let’s recap anyway.

– The Jays signed Jose Canseco at Clemens’ request.
- The Jays interviewed, but ultimately passed over, Davey Johnson, Larry Bowa, Paul Molitor and Willie Randolph, and hired Tim Johnson as their manager. Main reason: Clemens really liked Johnson from their time in Boston.
- Then assistant-GM Tim McLeary put in the name of his old college friend and baseball teammate to fill the Jays’ vacant strength-and-conditioning coach position: Brian McNamee. “Yankees who remembered McNamee from his days with the team [as bullpen catcher] were stupefied. McNamee as a strength and conditioning coach? Hadn’t even entered their minds.”
- “Reliever Dan Plesac, a 13-year veteran who cringed at the allowances the organization made for its ace, went so far as to name one of his horses “The 21 Rules” in honor of Clemens’ special treatment. It was far from a compliment.”
- Robert Person tells of how Tim Johnson’s lie was exposed: “We all chipped in once and bought him a motorcycle as a present. Roger came up with the idea of learning what Marine unit he served in and painting it on his helmet. When we tried finding out, well, there was nothing there.”
- Then assistant-GM Dave Stewart doesn’t mince words about the Rocket: “He was a great pitcher, but he wasn’t really conducive to winning. He had pitched for almost 15 years in the majors, and not once had Roger made a difference in anything having to do with winning for a ball club when it counted. So to me, if Roger wanted to leave, let him. Good-bye, farewell, have a nice day. We’ll be just fine without you. And probably better.”

Oh yeah, and Clemens was roided the fuck up. (Allegedly)

(Shameless plug: There’s a great video of a Pearlman interview, regarding his book on the early 90s Dallas Cowboys, on TheScore.com Blog.)

Clement Cut… From The Big League Team

When I heard that the Jays had cut Matt Clement, I figured that was it, but not quite: they’ve given him a minor league offer, which he’ll mull. Evidently this has something to do with the Ark of the Covenant.

Obviously I haven’t been there watching, but I’m still a little puzzled with the decision to cut bait on the guy and go with the kids out of the gate.

True, he was brutal in his last outing, but– and this is a terrible comparison– so was Roy Halladay’s. I’m sure it was more than just one outing that dropped him from the rotation picture, but I’d just rather see some consistent performances in the minors from the youngsters before they’re thrown into the fire.

Then again, if you go with Clement, and it turns out that– shock– he funkin blows, if the kids are sucking in the minors, then what do you do– move a kid up a level when he’s struggling? That’s hardly ideal either, so… maybe I’m wrong. I guess it’s kind of nice, on the Jays part, to at least not string him along until the bitter end. Now he can decide where to go from here, I guess. But the thing about that is, I actually don’t really care.

The Greatest Promotion Ever

Last week on Puck Daddy we were told about the Las Vegas Wranglers hockey team. The beautiful, beautiful Las Vegas Wranglers hockey team, who, tonight, will delay puck drop by an hour and a half, because they’ll have their Over-18 Night which includes an “open bar for $20 starting at 7:30 p.m. and two-for-one drinks for fans 21-and-older throughout the game.” The night also includes DJ Mike Relm, and strippers! (Though, unfortunately, no nudity.)

Are you listening, Rogers?

Holy Shit, I Agree With Dave Perkins

Not like he went out on a limb or anything, but in today’s Star, Perkins shrugs off the hand-wringing about why Americans don’t really give a shit about the WBC– since they don’t feel the title means anything, because it’s still their sport– figuring that, with more time, and more defeats, they’ll get the message. Of course, Perkins uses a hockey analogy– which I’ll spare you– to explain it.

Matt (expletive) Bush

Jays “prospect”, and former number one overall pick, Matt Bush, has been formally charged in the February incident where he allegedly drunkenly “threw a golf club into the dirt, picked up and threw a freshman lacrosse player and hit another one,” before shouting “I’m Matt (expletive) Bush,” and “(expletive) East County”. If convicted, he faces up to four years in jail and a $2,000 fine.

Jesus, four years sounds reasonable, but that two grand on top of it really stings!


ESPN has a chat with Dave Winfield at 4 PM EST today.

Bet Firms doesn’t predict great things for the Jays, or “Kyle” Overbay. Uh… you might want to get a second opinion, though, just to be safe.

Old news, but important to mention: Corey Koskie has given up on his comeback after feeling lightheaded. Shitty.

Murray Chass in the Herald de Paris? Writing about Mike Piazza’s backne again? What a world we live in!

Did we mention that the Jays might use Litsch in the third spot if three lefties make the rotation? I can’t remember, because I’m not sure Jesse was even born when I started writing this fucking post.

Wells, Scutaro and Barrett each had two hits, including a double each, this afternoon, while David Purcey gave up 8 hits in six innings, but only one earned run (two total). The Beej and the Brandon League were shittay.

In trying to pretend that their team doesn’t suck, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review is also going to try to pretend that Shitske doesn’t suck. I should probably be easier on those hard-luck Pirates fans, but it’s just so damn easy.

Jeff Blair won’t ever put Curt Schilling on his ballot– “invoking the ‘Gary Carter: Jerk’ rule”. Because yeah, apparently now it’s the Hall of Guys Who Were Nice To Jeff Blair. Fuck sakes.

Cito likes the WBC, thinks the US should start camp early, and says he wouldn’t have dissented if Roy Halladay wanted to play. Holy shit, wouldn’t it be awesome to see Doc play on the kind of stage that, let’s face it, he’s never going to play on here. (Ouch!)