The MLB trade deadline is Friday at 4:00 p.m. ET. Here are all the latest rumors.
The Blue Jays have raised their price in discussions with the Phillies regarding ace Roy Halladay to Kyle Drabek, J.A. Happ, outfield prospect Dominic Brownand Cliff Lee.
Reports say Royals GM Dayton Moore likes his prospects shaved.
The Yankees are said to be interested in Cleveland catcher Victor Martinez or anyone the Red Sox are said to be interested in.
The Giants are said to be shopping the scout who told them that Ryan Garko is good.
Rumors say the Cardinals like both Roy Halladay and Jarrod Washburn, but only as friends.
Sources within the Nationals front office say they have received no feedback regarding trade offers they made to the Expos.
The Pirates are close to sending second baseman Freddy Sanchez to the Giants for prospects. The addition of two or more prospects to the Pittsburgh organization would force them to create a second Triple-A team.
GMs who have traded with Cleveland's Mark Shapiro have described him as an "Indian giver."
Mariners DHKen Griffey, Jr. died four years ago.
Padres GM Kevin Towers say they will deal closer Heath Bell only if it allows him to fill multiple needs: a starting pitcher, bullpen depth, a power bat prospect, and emotional/physical needs, such as someone who is willing to give him oral.
Brett Favre clarified his decision to retire permanently from football today, saying he will step away from the game each week during the season from Monday through Saturday, only to briefly unretire for a few hours each Sunday afternoon to play for the Vikings.
"This allows me to sort of tell the truth for a change because, technically, I will be retired for 99-percent of every week. So suck on that, critics," said Favre. "Plus, I get to play, only I don't have to take part in practice or talk to anyone on the team. It's really the best of both worlds. I don't know why I didn't think of this years ago."
Vikings head coach Brad Childress, who only 24 hours ago thought he would be playing the season with Tarvaris Jackson and Sage Rosenfels at quarterback, is ecstatic about Favre's new decision.
"I'd love to have him with us all week like a normal player," said Childress. "But Brett made it clear the last few years that the normal rules don't apply to him. He does what he wants. And I'm happy he'll be doing what he wants for us."
The future Hall of Famer won't be practicing with his Vikings teammates before Week 1 or anytime after that but Childress isn't worried the lack of familiarity will negatively impact Minnesota's offense.
"It's not like Brett was going to learn our playbook anyway," said Childress. "He's just going to run around back there and chuck it as far down the field as he possibly can. He's sort of a hybrid of the negative qualities of Tarvaris and Sage that way only he has something very special they don't: the universal love and respect of the media. That's huge in leading a football team to a championship."
Favre said he plans to hold a tearful retirement press conference each Sunday afternoon and then leak rumors to the press throughout each week that he is unretiring, followed by a dramatic unretirement ceremony before every game at midfield before kickoff.
July 29, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
Procrastinating GM only looking to trade for players to be named later
The Washington Nationals are expected to be sellers at the trade deadline, but interim GM Mike Rizzo says fans shouldn't expect any immediate returns on possible deals. "I'm exhausted, to tell you the truth," Rizzo said, mumbling into his cell phone while laying on the couch in his office. "I've got a ton of paperwork to catch up on, scouting tapes to watch, contracts to negotiate and I haven't gotten to any of it. I'm sure I will. Just not now." And that's just Rizzo's work tasks. "I haven't mowed my lawn in weeks." So any trades the Nationals make and Rizzo says they will only deal if opposing teams refuse to leave him alone, forcing him to pick up the phone will be for players to be named later. "I'll figure out who we'll get in return eventually. Maybe a pitcher. Maybe a hitter. I guess those would be the two options. Anyway I'll try to figure it all out by Thanksgiving or Christmas."
Just days after Major League Baseball commissioner Bud Selig announced he will consider lifting Pete Rose's lifetime ban from the game, new information has emerged that suggests Rose still has a serious gambling problem.
“Several very reliable sources have told me thatRosehas been spending $5 to $7 onhaircutsfor years, and continued to do so even after he was banned from baseball forgambling,” said a source in the commissioner's office. “You can’t spend that little money on a haircut and expect to get good results.”
Critics have long pointed to Rose’s history of awfulhaircuts from uneven crew cuts to ragged, tapered bowl cuts as evidence that the hit king’sgamblingproblems continue unabated.
While Rose's chances of reinstatement seemed good, the thought of lifting the ban should likely will not even be considered untilRosegets a good haircut.
“Until he stopsgamblingon his hair and spends at least $12 to $15 on a cut, he should remain out of baseball,” said the source. "Do you think anyone wants to see that hair on a Hall of Fame plaque? I think not."
But Rose's business manager, Kevin Reynolds, says his client is not paying too little for haircuts.
"He's not flush with cash by any means due to the suspension, but we make money where we can," said Reynolds. "And our latest deal is to make Pete the official endorser of that blog about men who look like old lesbians menwholooklikeoldlesbians.blogspot.com. Hence the hair. It's contractually bad. Nothing more."
Tour de France champion Alberto Contador and former seven-time champion Lance Armstrong are no longer pretending they are friends. In fact, they have been sniping pretty hard back and forth at each other.
But what Contador may not realize is that he is taking on one of the most beloved figures in the world. So what is said by each party is not necessarily what the public hears.
Contador:"My relationship with Lance Armstrong is zero. He's a great rider and he did a great Tour. Another thing is on a personal level, where I have never admired him and never will."
What we hear: "I am pro-cancer. I hope everyone gets cancer and dies. That is, everyone but me. Ha-ha! Oh, but for the record, I don't mean 'Ha-ha!' as in 'I'm joking.' I mean that I will laugh joyously while everyone around me dies of cancer."
- - -
Armstrong, via Twitter:"Hey pistolero, there is no 'I' in 'team'. what did I say in March? Lots to learn. Restated."
What we hear: "Sorry to hear you're pro-cancer. Obviously, you are just a terrible person. By the way, there is no 'I' in 'team.' Up for some other word play? Okay. Do you know what 'Contador' rhymes with? 'Your mom's a whore.' Ironic, right? Because she is a whore!"
July 28, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
Card game halted to play a quick game of Major League Baseball
The Pittsburgh Pirates briefly decided to set aside their clubhouse game of hearts today to play a quick game of Major League Baseball. "I wanted to keep playing, but some guys wanted to try baseball for a bit," said reliever Jesse Chavez. "I hope it doesn't take more than two or three hours or I'm coming back in here to play cards." Starting pitcher Zach Duke says he is going to stay at the table and play hearts. "They can go out there and do whatever they want to do, but I'm dealing another hand. "It's the benefit of being a starting pitcher I only have to stop playing cards once every five days."
Roger Goodell has been criticized for seeming to have no method to his suspension madness. This guy gets a four-game suspension for a seemingly minor traffic infraction, that guy gets a $5,000 fine for serial genocide.
But there really is a uniform procedure in place. It's a point system. And SportsPickle is the first to see it.
NFL SUSPENSION GENERATOR
1. Has the player been arrested? (Add 0 points for NO. Add 5 points for YES.)
2. Was the arrest caught on tape? (Add 0 points for NO. Add 10 points for YES.)
3. Was anything killed? (Add 0 points for NO and jump to #4. Add 20 points for YES.)
3(a). What was killed? (Add 10 points for human(s). Add 50 points for dog and 100 for each additional dog. Add 10 points if it was a plant, 20 if the plant was killed by lighting it on fire and smoking it.)
4. Does the player play in a large market? (Add 0 points for YES. Add 10 points for NO.)
5. Is the player white? (Add 0 points for YES.)
6. Is the player Asian? (Add 0 points for YES.)
7. Is the player Latino? (Add 0 points for YES.)
8. Is the player Native American? (Add 0 points for YES.)
9. Is the player something other than what's found in 5-8? (Add 10 points for YES.)
10. Does the player have a history of recreational drug use (not counting steroids and painkillers, of course)? (Add 0 points for NO. Add 5 points for YES.)
11. Does the player have a history of using steroids and/or painkillers? (Add 0 points for NO. Submit name to Canton voters for YES.)
12. Did the player stink of strip club when you met with him? (Add 0 points for NO. Add 10 points for YES and wash hands.)
13. Was the crime committed in sweat pants? (Add 0 points for NO. Point, laugh and mock for YES.)
14. Does the player watch "Happening Now" on Fox News, hosted by my wife, Jane Skinner? (Deduct 20 points for YES. Add 10 points for NO and have NFL Security investigate them for possible socialist behaviors.)
15. Is the player a fellow ginger? (Add 15 points for NO. Deduct 100 points for YES.)
16. Think of a number between 10 and 100. Now add that many points to the score. Or deduct that many. Whichever.
0 to 10 points = monetary fine
11 to 20 points = kangaroo
21 to 30 points = 7
31 to 40 points = the moon landing was a hoax
41 to 50 points = I smell paint.
51 points or more = I'M CRAZY!!!!
July 27, 2009 Column
Stuff You Might Have Heard
Backwards hat fails to swing arm wrestling match
Five seconds into his arm wrestling match, Jake Radziewicz knew it was going to be tough to win. "He was stronger than I was. I couldn't even maintain a good grip," said the retired plumber. But then he happened upon an idea. "I needed to switch my cap around just like Stallone in 'Over The Top.'" So Radziewicz reached up with his free hand, turned his hat around and suddenly the match was over. "In the time it took me to flip my cap, he slammed my hand off the table. It was a pretty stupid move on my part. Maybe the trick is turning your cap before the match. Or maybe the trick is being strong."
While blessed with one of the most athletic builds and powerful punches in all of women’s boxing, Christi Mitchell has struggled with one thing since beginning her fight career five years ago – her pair ofglassjugs.
“Christi has it all – speed, power, stamina – and a great mind for boxing, as well,” said her trainer, Mickey Arista. “But unfortunately she wasn’t born with a sturdyrack. If she lets those ta-ta’s take a couple good shots, she goes down.”
Mitchell’s latest loss – which dropped her to a disappointing 22-7 for her career – came Saturday night in Atlantic City when she was KO’d in the sixth round in a fight against lightly regarded Lisa Lowry (19-16-2).
“There almost no way that woman had any business being in a ring with Christi,” said Arista, “but she stuck to the playbook that people have developed for fighting her – hit a tit, move, hit the other tit, move again – and came out on top. I don’t want to admit this, but it’s gotten to the point where we may have to accept the fact that Christi’s fun bags are going to prevent her from ever winning a title.”
Lowry said she was confident entering the fight with Mitchell due to the game plan provided by her trainer.
“Every day that I was training and sparring in the weeks leading up to the bout my trainer kept stressing the three H’s – Hit Her Hooters,” said Lowry. “He even stenciled three H’s on each of my gloves to help me remember. And it really struck me how well the strategy was working when we I got tied up with Christi in the fourth round and she whispered in my ear and begged me to please stop hitting her hooters. But I didn’t and by the end of the sixth round she was down for good, clutching at her sensitive boobies.”
Mitchell – wearing a giant, ice-filled bra after the bout – admits she struggles when getting knocked in the knockers, but doubts she has it any worse than any of her other competitors.
“I can’t imagine any femaleboxerlikes getting punched there. It really freaking hurts,” she said. “That’s really what women’s boxing is all about – come out aggressive and knock someone out before they get a chance to crush your cans. I just need to regroup for my next fight and be prepared to turn the tables and bash some bazoombas of my own.”
ADD: Jarrod Washburn, P, Mariners Chances are no one in your fantasy league drafted Washburn back before the season started. And for good reason Washburn lost at least 14 games each of the last three seasons and only once posted an ERA below 4.32 since 2002. Yet now, more than halfway through the 2009 season, the former Angel is 8-6 with a 2.71 ERA and a remarkable 1.06 WHIP. He may not be a sexy waiver wire pickup, but look at your roster there's a great chance Washburn is better than someone you currently have pitching. What, he's not?! Oh, so you think you're better than me or something?! You know what? Fk, you guy. You're a dick, you know that? I was just trying to help.