HGH: A Q&A session

Q: What? How could that be?

A: I don’t know. Maybe HGH just enables your muscles to retain a little more water.

Q: I remember Andy Pettite saying that he used HGH to help recover from an injury. Can HGH help an athlete heal?

A: Maybe. On this question, we simply have no definitive information one way or the other.. MLB is funding a scientific study to examine this question.

Q: The only answers you’re giving us are “maybe”, “could be” and “who knows”. C’mon. Give it to us straight. Do you figure that HGH is performance-enhancing or not?

A: I don’t know. But I figure not.

Q: But if HGH was worthless, then athletes wouldn’t use it.

A: This is the question. Do we believe the scientists, who say that HGH does not enhance performance, or the cheating athletes, who seem to think that HGH is helpful? To confuse matters, there are scientists out there who choose to believe the athletes and not their fellow scientists.Click here to read the rest

The "As He Goes, The Team Goes" Fallacy

Steve Lombardi was one of a handful of bloggers who answered questions from the NY Times Bats Blog about the upcoming season, and the following statement caught my eye:

Considering the ultimate price tag ($8 million for one year), it may have been the prudent move to bring Damon back for a year. But, then again, there was that “budget” concern which we heard so often. It may just be conventional wisdom on my part, but it seemed like Damon was in the middle of things happening last season more times than not. For the record, his OPS in wins was over .900 and he batted .245 in games that the Yankees lost.

I advocated that the Yankees bring Damon back, so I understand where Steve is coming from, even though he dismisses the budget concerns. What interested me was the idea that Damon was in the middle of things last season, with significantly better numbers in wins than losses. I believe Steve falls for a common fallacy here, as teams obviously hit significantly better in wins than they do in losses.… Click here to read the rest

Business of Sports Network Launches Autism Awareness Campaign

The main point of the autism awareness campaign is for you to spread the word, and reach a better understanding of the developmental disorder.

Here is how the Autism Society of America describes autism:

Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviors and is a “spectrum disorder” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause for autism, but increased awareness and funding can help families today.

Autism is treatable. Children do not “outgrow” autism, but studies show that early diagnosis and intervention lead to significantly improved outcomes.

Here are some signs to look for in the children in your life:

  • Lack of or delay in spoken language
  • Repetitive use of language and/or motor mannerisms (e.g., hand-flapping, twirling objects)
  • Little or no eye contact
  • Lack of interest in peer relationships
  • Lack of spontaneous or make-believe play
  • Persistent fixation on parts of objects

The following information is provided by Autism Speaks:

Did you know …

  • Autism now affects 1 in 110 children and 1 in 70 boys
  • Autism prevalence figures are growing
  • More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes & cancer combined
  • Autism is the fastest-growing serious developmental disability in the U.S.
Click here to read the rest

Joba might not be the setup man

Here’s an interesting article from Joel Sherman of the NY Post:

Unlike with the fifth starter’s job, the Yankees are comfortable going into the season without delineating a primary set-up man for Mariano Rivera.

It had been believed that if Joba Chamberlain failed to win the last rotation spot, he simply would become the main eighth-inning reliever. But manager Joe Girardi has said publicly that Chamberlain must earn that position, and several Yankees officials insisted to The Post that is not just said for effect or as a motivational ploy toward Chamberlain, a player the organization does worry about when he gets too comfortable.

Instead, early in the season, Girardi is leaning toward looking at multiple options and letting the results dictate how he proceeds. Is it best that Joba earn that role for now and for the future? Yes.

So, not only is Joba no longer a starter, at least for the foreseeable future, he might not even be the setup man this season.… Click here to read the rest

Yanks Should Look at Ryan Garko

Piggybacking off of a post yesterday by Fack Youk, I’m suggesting that the Yankees should take a look at Ryan Garko for the last bench spot. He’d obviously be taking this spot from Marcus Thames, with whom none of us seem very impressed this season. From the article:

Garko, like Thames, mashes left handed pitching. His career line of .313/.392/.495 in 485 PA against southpaws is actually better than Thames’ .256/.329/.516 line in 691 PA. Garko’s also four years younger and has two years of arbitration eligibility left.

Adding to the numbers: Garko has a .382 wOBA (136 wRC+) vs. LHP, compared to Thames’s .360 and 122 marks.

Unlike Thames, though, Garko has spent minimal time in the OF. He’s played only 12 games there and has been absolutely putrid (-20.3 UZR/150). Thames isn’t exactly Carl Crawford out there, though, and has been in the red defensively almost exclusively for his career.

But, if the Yankees are confident in going with Thames and his lack of defense, there’s no reason they shouldn’t be looking at Garko.… Click here to read the rest

Hughes' First Start To Come April 15th

[image title=”YANKEES 6 MUNSON” size=”full” id=”16354″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]
Via Marc Carig:

Assuming that weather doesn’t change the schedule, Phil Hughes will make his first start for the Yankees on April 15 against the Angels.
But before that, Yankees manager Joe Girardi said Hughes will stay stretched out by pitching in extended spring training games on April 5 and 10.
Hughes will remain on the active roster in case he’s needed by the Yankees to spot start or make a relief appearance.
“That’s what I figured was going to happen,” Hughes said. “So, nothing unexpected.”

When the Yankees first announced that Phil had won the 5th starter spot, I was concerned about innings limits and said the following:

As you can see, Phil’s career high came in 2006, when he threw 146 innings. That is 4 seasons ago, and some have trouble believing that the Yankees are going to depend on that as a baseline for 2010. However, Marc Carig stated on Twitter that Hughes will have a higher limit than Joba did in 2009, when he threw 163.1 innings.

Click here to read the rest

A-Jax in retrospect


Over 19 spring games, former Yankee top prospect, Austin Jackson, who was used to acquire All-Star center fielder, Curtis Granderson, is hitting an impressive .356/.441/.576 with 9 walks and just 8 strikeouts. Manager Jim Leyland is particularly pleased with A-Jax’s performance this spring. “Let’s face it, we (traded) a real good player, a very popular player (for Jackson),” says Leyland. “He would have had to really show us he’s not ready, and he hasn’t shown that. He’s done very, very well. I’ve been very impressed.” Now, as I have said in the past, spring performances, whether good or bad, must be taken with a grain of salt given the limited number of at-bats. However, let’s discuss a hypothetical for the moment in view of A-Jax’s strong spring–if Curtis Granderson has a year similar to his 2009 season and if Austin Jackson delivers on his promise for Detroit, rather than for New York, would you second guess Brian Cashman’s decision to pull the trigger on that trade?… Click here to read the rest

Planning To Fail: The Royals, Pirates, Marlins (and others)

But the second requirement is potentially more meaningful: each recipient team must “report on the performance-related uses to which it put its revenue sharing receipts in the preceding Revenue Sharing Year“. In other words, on April 1 each of these poor teams must submit a plan to improve its on the field performance.

Here is an opening to have a bit of fun. Post what YOU think some of these plans might say. For example:

Kansas City Royals: Seven words: Gilbert Meche. Five Years. $55 million.

Pittsburgh Pirates: Who can question our on-field performance? Jack Wilson, Xavier Nady, Jason Bay, Freddy Sanchez. At every trading deadline, teams line up to buy our on-field performers.

Florida Marlins: We’ll pocket our revenue sharing. As always. We’re the most profitable team in baseball. I don’t know what kind of performance YOU’RE talking about, but …

Seriously, folks. If you were a fan of one of these teams, wouldn’t YOU want to know what plan your team has in mind?… Click here to read the rest