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It is beyond me how anyone can justify Bud Selig being paid over 30 times more than the President of the United States. He made $14.5 million while the president makes $400,000 a year. It is not that I feel sorry for President George Bush since he reaped a financial bonanza when he was part owner of the Texas Rangers. He turned his $600,000 investment into $14 million when the club was sold to Tom Hicks.
Still there is no reason for Selig to be paid that kind of money. When I used the word earns in the headline it was being used in the very loosest terms since he only earned $500,000 if that much of that salary. They could hire someone off the street who could do a much better job than Selig.
Spring Baseball Notebook
Yesterday the Rays sent pitcher David Price to the minor leagues. It was a move that everyone knew was coming but it will be interesting to see if the Rays send him to AA or AAA team. If he dominates whatever league he is sent to he will be called up in September if not sooner.
A's sent first baseman Wes Bankston to minor leagues. Bankston hit .500 and slugged .700 this spring for the A's but the numbers game worked against him with Daric Barton and Dan Johnson ahead of him at first base in the depth chart at mlb.com....Brooks Conrad and Donnie Murphy are battling to win a backup infield spot on the A's roster with Conrad hitting .444 and Murphy hitting .357 this spring.
The A's have three outfielders set for the 2008 season with Emil Brown, Travis Buck and Jack Cust. Todd Linden presently has a great shot at winning one of the remaining outfield spots on the roster by hitting a team leading .667 this spring. However when looking at his career stats he has an average season of at bats with 502 career at bats but only has 8 home runs and 36 runs batted in for his career and only 8 stolen bases. He only has 3 assists in 1035 innings.
Greg Smith who is from Alexandria, Louisiana is pitching well this spring for the A's with a 1.00 ERA and a 1-0 record and could win the fifth spot in the starting rotation. The former LSU pitcher came over to the A's from the Diamondbacks during the offseason. The A's have won 9 games with 9 different pitchers posting those wins. Lenny DiNardo is the best returning starter this spring with a 1.29 ERA.
Justin Duchscherer is looking like he is ready to assume a spot in the starting rotation with his 2.25 ERA this spring. Rich Harden has an ERA of 9.00 but manager Bob Geren is probably more worried about him staying healthy right now. It does make you wonder if he is having health issues though since he has given up 6 runs and 11 hits in 6 innings. Joe Blanton has a 7.36 ERA this spring but should be fine once the season starts.
Jamie Moyer and Brett Myers are only Phillies starters to post wins this spring with both having 1-0 records and perfect 0.00 ERA's. However the other pitchers who have started games for Phillies this spring have not come close to matching the performance of Moyer and Myers.
Travis Blackley...1 start...9.64 ERA J.D. Durbin...3 starts...9.64 ERA Joe Savery...1 start...10.80 ERA Cole Hamels...2 starts...12.60 ERA Adam Eaton...2 starts...15.75 ERA Kyle Kendrick...3 starts...16.43 ERA..allowed 14 runs, 19 hits, 3 walks in 7.2 innings
With the season starting in about two weeks the Phillies have to be concerned about their starting pitching and the Phillies have to be also concerned about the performance of their closer Tom Gordon this spring. He has pitched 2 2/3 innings and given up 4 earned runs and 7 hits with a 13.50 ERA.
Ryan Howard and Pedro Feliz are having excellent springs with Howard hitting .433 with 3 home runs and 7 runs batted in and Feliz hitting .310 with 2 home runs. Howard only has 6 strikeouts in 11 games after striking out 199 times last season. The middle infielders Chase Utley and Jimmy Rollins are not doing as well with Utley hitting .241 and Rollins hitting .115 with Rollins having 3 hits in 26 at bats. Geoff Jenkins is hitting .188 with one RBI this spring.
Even though you can't take too much stock into spring training games the Phillies would like to have a better record than their current 4-9 mark which ties them with Blue Jays for second worst record in spring training behind the 4-10 Giants.
Hopefully the Phillies can start winning before the season opens so they can have a better start than last season. They have the hitters to take them a long way but the pitching could be a real problem in 2008.
Look at Spring Statistics
Angel Pagan leads all spring hitters with 17 hits.
Jesus Merchan of the Diamondbacks is leading all hitters with at least 20 at bats with a .550 batting average. Next is Josh Hamilton hitting .522 with 2 home runs and a major league leading 11 runs batted in.
Two Tigers Carlos Guillen and Ivan Rodriguez lead in home runs with 4 each. Twelve players have 3 home runs.
Josh Hamilton leads in runs batted in with 11 with Joe Borchard, Jack Cust and Jolbert Cabrera second with 10 each.
Ryan Howard and Nick Swisher are tied for lead in total bases with 26 each.
Delwyn Young of Dodgers leads in strikeouts with 13 and Elijah Dukes and Richie Weeks are next with 12.
Brian Roberts and Eugenio Velez of Giants are tied for stolen base lead with 7 each.
Matt Morse of the Mariners leads in on base percentage among batters with at least 20 at bats with a .600 mark. Next is Jesus Merchan with a .591 on base percentage.
Chris Snyder is leading in slugging percentage at 1.095 and Josh Hamilton is in second place with a 1.043 mark.
Nick Swisher leads in extra base hits with 9 with Torii Hunter next with 8. Swisher has 9 extra base hits among his 11 hits and Hunter has 8 among his 11 hits.
Jered Weaver leads all pitchers in wins with a perfect 3-0 record. 15 pitchers have a 2-0 record this spring.
Barry Zito leads all pitchers in losses with 3. Zito has a 17.18 ERA this spring having allowed 14 runs, 14 hits and 6 walks in 7 1/3 innings.
Kyle Kendrick has allowed the most hits this spring with 19 and Josh Towers has allowed 18. J.D. Durbin is third with 17 hits allowed.
Durbin also leads in home runs allowed with 4.
Edinson Volquez of Reds leads in strikeouts with 13 in 8 innings. Joe Hanrahan of Nationals is second with 12 in 7 2/3 innings.
Volquez also leads in strikeouts per 9 innings among pitchers facing at least 30 batters with 14.63 strikeouts per 9 innings.