Who's the boss of bosses? (cont.)
Posted: Monday February 18, 2008 12:13PM; Updated: Tuesday February 19, 2008 9:33AM
Around the Majors
Red Sox ownership flies in next week and is hoping to wrap an extension for deserving manager Terry Francona soon after they arrive. "We'll see. We've been pretty good about keeping this thing under the radar,'' Francona says. "I don't think either [side] is going to do anything to change that.'' Joe Girardi's big $7.8-million, three-year deal with the Yankees helps Francona in that Girardi has managed only one year while Francona has already won two World Series championships. Francona (who makes $1.75 million in 2008, the last of his current contract), should be at least in the category of new Reds manager Dusty Baker ($3.7 million) among managerial contracts signed in recent months, if not Cardinals skipper Tony La Russa ($4 million).
The Indians are smart to hold onto Cy Young winner and free agent-to-be C.C. Sabathia rather than trade him. Their chances to sign him long-term after this season are probably slim, but the difference between them and the Twins is that they have an excellent chance to make the playoffs this year.
The Angels' Francisco Rodriguez started spring on a downer Sunday by saying he thought this would be his last year as an Angel. K-Rod is unhappy to be going to arbitration Thursday (he seeks $12.5 million while the team is offering $10 million) and to not have a multiyear deal in place.
When Tigers manager Jim Leyland says trading Brandon Inge is a "strong possibility,'' it sounds like wishful thinking. Perhaps Leyland doesn't want a player who just lost his job and might not make much of a pinch hitter. Inge's disappointment to lose his third base job to newly acquired Miguel Cabrera is evident. He already has a blowup in camp, yelling at a Detroit News reporter who left many phone messages (about 10, according to Inge) and who called Inge "unprofessional'' for not returning them (though 10 calls does seem to border on harassment).
The A's, who are very reasonable in their trade requests, are not insisting on top outfield prospect Jay Bruce in talks with the Reds involving Joe Blanton.
Jeremy Brown, the heavy-set catcher who was held up as evidence of the A's superior drafting decisions in Moneyball has retired at age 28.
Spring scene: Carlos Delgado's Maserati, which sits in the Mets parking lot, arrived many days before he did.
Johan Santana is making a great impression as a positive influence so far in Mets camp. Billy Wagner kindly tried to help him out by talking about how tough the transition to New York is. But the reality is, he better be good, after signing a deal that will pay him at least $137.5 million and likely hit $150.75 million.
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