Ex-players start Marvin Miller Web site
Former MLBPA executive director still not in Hall of Fame
A group of former players stirred to action by the Hall of Fame's failure to elect Marvin Miller have developed a Web site to honor their former union leader and bring attention to the issue.
"As the director of the Major League Baseball Players Association (from 1966 to 1983), Marvin led us from a history of no rights to parity with the owners," Bob Locker, who pitched for five clubs between 1965 and 1975, writes in the introduction to ThanksMarvin.com. "Most of us were very respectful of our opportunity to play a sport for a living, and certainly didn't want to offend our employers. But, Marvin pointed out how grossly unjust the situation was. With grace and dignity, he slowly but surely led us into a position of equality.
"Those of us whose careers ended before free agency began in 1975 rarely made enough during the seasons to support ourselves and families without working in the offseasons, nevermind saving for the future. Thanks to this man, we now enjoy pensions, often greater than our salaries during our playing days."
Miller turned 93 on Wednesday. Happy Birthday, Marvin!
Rauch honors Nathan after first save at Target Field: After posting the first save at Target Field, the Twins' new stadium, Jon Rauch decided that injured closer Joe Nathan should get the game ball.
"I've been thinking about it for a while," Rauch told MLB.com. "He's such a pivotal part of this team and gotten them so far in the past. It's so unfortunate what happened to him in the spring, and the blow he was dealt. He's got to sit and watch. I've been there. I've been on the sidelines watching my teammates play, and it's not a lot of fun.
"It means a lot to me, the amount of help he's given me. I figured that was the least I owed him."
Hayhurst's book becomes a best seller: Dirk Hayhurst might not throw a pitch for the Blue Jays this season due to an injured right shoulder, but his book, The Bullpen Gospels, is on The New York Times best-seller list. The book is about Hayhurst's life in the Minors and the many ups and downs he experienced.
"I didn't start off with the idea of writing a book that would end up on The New York Times best-seller list," Hayhurst told the Toronto Sun. "I started off with the idea that I'd like to make some money from a career that was essentially swirling down the toilet bowl. My Minor League numbers were terrible, and after five years of playing Minor League ball, I knew the direction I was going was out of the game and quickly."
Edmonds received encouragement from Pujols: Albert Pujols is among a number of Jim Edmonds' former Cardinals teammates who helped convince the Brewers' new outfielder that his career wasn't over.
"He said I was crazy not to try it," Edmonds told MLB.com.
Added Pujols: "I spoke to him and told him -- he was walking his little boy through our clubhouse -- I said, 'I think you made that decision too soon.' But, sometimes that happens. You think you need to take a year off to take care of your body. Obviously, he took a year off because of injuries and felt good this year. I worked out with him in the offseason. I encouraged him after what I saw. I was honest."
Cantu glad to see Gomes find success: Jorge Cantu has a fan in Jonny Gomes. The two came up together in the Rays organization and have remained close, even after they ended up on separate teams.
"There's so much adversity in this game," Gomes told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "To see a guy overcome it speaks [volumes] of the character of the player more than his talent. Cantu was given up on by [the Reds] and the Rays."
"He's definitely grinded his way to where he is now," Gomes said. "He wasn't a first-rounder, silver-spoon guy. He deserves all his accolades. ... It's good to see a guy like that who's had success and continues his work ethic. It's always a breath of fresh air to see a guy who's top two, three on the team and top two, three on the team in work ethic."
Davies taking more aggressive approach: Kyle Davies, who is scheduled to pitch for the Royals on Wednesday against the Tigers, says his attitude is going to be the same in every outing this year -- get ahead in the count.
"My approach with every team this year is to get ahead as much as possible, especially with no one on base -- not try to be so fine on the corners and trust my stuff right in the zone and see what happens," Davies told MLB.com.
Blake, Kemp glad to be Dodger teammates: Veteran Casey Blake and upcoming star Matt Kemp have a relationship that bridges age and culture gaps.
"He's special," Blake told the Los Angeles Times about Kemp. "I'm envious of how good he is at such a young age. He's going to have to build a bigger house for all the awards he's going to be getting."
"That's my dog," Kemp says of Blake. "He's got swag, he's got flavor, he's got rhythm."
Zito not waiting on 'baseball gods': Barry Zito won his second game in as many outings in Monday's win over the Pirates. Zito hopes it's the start of a new era in terms of his career in San Francisco.
"Usually in the second half I feel pretty good," Zito told the San Francisco Chronicle. "My goal is to bring that second-half guy into the first half. Usually I get to the second half and I'm in a place where the year is going to be what it is, and I let the baseball gods determine what's going to happen."
Manzella makes move to No. 2 spot in order: The struggling Astros moved rookie shortstop Tommy Manzella from No. 7 to No. 2 in their batting order on Monday. He went 1-for-4 in the lineup spot he's filled most often during his baseball career.
"I felt real comfortable," Manzella told the Houston Chronicle. "The main thing when batting in the two-hole is you have to understand is that your out has to be a productive one if you make one."
Correia at home in San Diego opener: Kevin Correia, who grew up in the San Diego area and attended many Padres' home openers as a kid, was the home team's starting pitcher this time around.
"I was a little excited before the game, but I settled down by the first inning," Correia told the San Diego Union-Tribune. "I was a little more nervous in the fifth [after the Padres had scored 10 runs in the bottom of the fourth] than I was at the start of the game. I started thinking, I've got to get the ball over the plate."
Garko's return to Cleveland: The Rangers' Ryan Garko is making his first trip back to Cleveland since being sent to San Francisco before last season's trade deadline.
"It's good to be back," Garko told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "It'll be weird running out of the other dugout."
Garko is the likely starter at first base on Thursday against Indians left-hander David Huff.
Ellsbury on the mend after collision: Jacoby Ellsbury took a knee to the chest in a collision with Red Sox teammate Adrian Beltre on Sunday.
"I think we caught a break in that he got hit with a little bit of meat, as opposed to [in his ribs]," manager Terry Francona told the Boston Globe. "Still pretty sore when he bends over. But, I think the hope would be just a couple days. We've got a day off [Wednesday]. We'll have to see, but he's OK. Structurally sound, and we've just got to let him heal a little bit."
Penny not caught up in strikeout total: Just because he throws hard when necessary doesn't make Brad Penny a power pitcher.
"I've never really been -- I was in the Minor Leagues, but as far as being in the big leagues, I've never been a real strikeout guy," the Cardinals' Penny told MLB.com. "I don't even know my total for a season. I've tried to pitch to contact. That's how you get deep into games."
Dunn having no problems getting on base: Nationals first baseman Adam Dunn has reached base in every game of the season and has a .448 on-base percentage, but he's still not completely comfortable.
"I'm just not putting the balls in play or getting hits on pitchers that I normally do," Dunn told the The Washington Post. "The good thing is, I do feel good. So I know it's going to change."
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.