Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Facts And Rumors 

Fact:  The D-Backs lost 10-3 to the Astros Tuesday night.
Rumor:  One of Randy Johnson's agents (one of?  he has more than one?) had the following exchange with D-Backs GM Joe Garagiola Jr.:

"If you don't trade him to the Yankees, you're going to have one unhappy player," [Randy Johnson agent] Barry Meister said.

"And how would I tell the difference?" Garagiola Jr. responded.

This exchange was reported in this story (minor registration required) -- http://www.nj.com/sports/ledger/index.ssf?/base/sports-2/10909159158120.xml -- in Tuesday's Newark Star Ledger and recounted in Dan Bickley's column today for the Arizona Republic.

But, as Bickley points out, neither Garagiola nor Meister returned phone calls from the Ledger yesterday and Garagiola refused to comment to the East Valley Tribune.

So we have one source -- who wasn't involved in the conversation -- and all of a sudden Randy is threatening to upset the apple cart?

Again, as I've said many times here, I'm not saying that these stories aren't true.  They very well could be.  But to use an unverified source as the source for the article borders on the ridiculous.

(Still, the quotes pulled in today's article -- http://www.nj.com/sports/ledger/index.ssf?/base/sports-2/1091005087292450.xml -- from an interview with Johnson in this week's Sports Illustrated do give a D-Backs fan pause.  "I've got more value for a winning team. Do I want to leave? No. I've enjoyed it here. But the reason I've enjoyed it is we've been winning. This team was put together to win in a four- or five-year window, and that window is closed. This team is going through a major transformation. If I'm guilty of anything, it's wanting to win. The only thing I want is to win.")

Fact: Steve Finley won't accept a trade to an East Coast team.
Rumor:  Edgar Gonzalez and Lance Cormier will "get the ball every five days," according to Al Pedrique.

In other words, the Finley to Philly move I'd speculated on so long ago won't happen.  But the Giants, Padres, and the Dodgers remain in the mix, at least for this season.

But after getting shelled once more, one wonders how long Gonzalez will get to pitch.  Believe you me, I'm glad that they're getting a chance.  But at some point, with Gonzalez having a 12.79 ERA, you have to wonder when it'll be some other young pitcher's turn to show what he can do.  Still, with Sparks issuing 3 earned runs in 3 innings, it seems like he's not getting back in.

Fact:  Coming up later today, an exciting new way to watch D-Backs baseball, and a proposal...

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