Results tagged ‘ Mike Francesa ’

A-Rod storms out of hearing, denies performance-enhancing drug use

Alex RodriguezThere is no going back: Alex Rodriguez has given his statement, on the record. Rodriguez claimed on Wednesday that he is completely innocent of using performance-enhancing drugs, as well as every other allegation that led to Major League Baseball hitting him with an unprecedented 211-game suspension back in August.

Rodriguez’s denials did not come under oath, but instead in the court of public opinion in WFAN’s New York studios. Rodriguez parachuted in for a surprise appearance with host Mike Francesa that lasted nearly 40 minutes, with Rodriguez stating that he “shouldn’t even serve one inning” of a suspension.

The appearance came after Rodriguez stormed out of the hearing room in midtown, slamming a table and kicking a briefcase in a furious response after arbitrator Fredric Horowitz refused to order Commissioner Bud Selig to testify in Rodriguez’s hearing.

“I’m done. I don’t have a chance,” Rodriguez said on WFAN.

In a statement released on Wednesday, Major League Baseball explained why Selig was not called to testify:

“In the entire history of the Joint Drug Agreement, the commissioner has not testified in a single case. Major League Baseball has the burden of proof in this matter,” the statement read. “MLB selected Rob Manfred as its witness to explain the penalty imposed in this case. Mr. Rodriguez and the Players Association have no right to dictate how Baseball’s case is to proceed any more than Baseball has the right to dictate how their case proceeds. Today’s antics are an obvious attempt to justify Mr. Rodriguez’s continuing refusal to testify under oath.”

Rodriguez was accompanied in WFAN’s studios by attorney Jim McCarroll, who said that Rodriguez will not testify unless Selig does. Rodriguez also released a statement through his representatives, saying that he would no longer participate.

“I am disgusted with this abusive process, designed to ensure that the player fails,” Rodriguez said. “I have sat through 10 days of testimony by felons and liars, sitting quietly through every minute, trying to respect the league and the process. This morning, after Bud Selig refused to come in and testify about his rationale for the unprecedented and totally baseless punishment he hit me with, the arbitrator selected by MLB and the Players Association refused to order Selig to come in and face me. The absurdity and injustice just became too much. I walked out and will not participate any further in this farce.”

In the Francesa interview, Rodriguez repeatedly said “I did nothing,” denying that he used steroids or performance-enhancing drugs supplied by Anthony Bosch or the Biogenesis clinic. Rodriguez briefly discussed his relationship with Bosch during the WFAN interview.

“It was nutrition and it was weight loss,” Rodriguez said. “And Bosch wasn’t the only guy. I traveled the world to see doctors, cutting-edge stuff, but always between the parameters of Major League Baseball. And I have hundreds of e-mails that will be part of evidence, which I can’t get into, that backs me up 100 percent.”

In response to a question from Francesa, Rodriguez acknowledged that he is “angry” at the Yankees, but said that he has a responsibility to the team and does not believe he would have any issues fitting back into the clubhouse.

“I feel like I should be there Opening Day,” Rodriguez said.

In a brief aside, Rodriguez also denied that he gave a signed baseball to two female fans during the 2012 American League Championship Series, as was widely reported. Rodriguez said that if he had done so, it certainly would have been captured by one of the many television cameras perched around Yankee Stadium.

The Major League Baseball Players Association released a statement following Rodriguez’s exit from the hearing room, disagreeing with Horowitz’s decision to excuse Selig from testifying.

“The MLBPA believes that every player has the right under our arbitration process to directly confront his accuser. We argued strenuously to the arbitrator in Alex’s case that the commissioner should be required to appear and testify. While we respectfully disagree with the arbitrator’s ruling, we will abide by it as we continue to vigorously challenge Alex’s suspension within the context of this hearing,” the statement read.

Another of Rodriguez’s lawyers, Joseph Tacopina, appeared on ESPN Radio and told host Michael Kay that further litigation may be in the future. Rodriguez has already sued MLB and Selig in state court, as well as a lawsuit against Yankees team physician Dr. Christopher Ahmad that alleges medical malpractice.

Rodriguez said during the WFAN interview that he is so upset at the situation that “right now, I can’t even think straight.” Rodriguez said that he would return home to spend time with his daughters. The hearing is scheduled to resume on Thursday without Rodriguez’s presence.

Good news! The Joba debate is alive and well

Back in June, I was working on a long feature about the Joba Chamberlain debate and had the opportunity to interview Mike Francesa of WFAN, who has been steadfastly of the belief that Chamberlain would best serve the Yankees as a setup man and potential future closer.

While talking with Francesa, I remarked that one positive about the never-ending argument is that on slow days, he could always float the starter-or-reliever question out there and know the switchboard would light up with instant responses.

Francesa responded that he doesn’t intentionally try to stir the pot like that, but acknowledged that call volume spikes on hot-button issues, and Chamberlain certainly represents one of those.

Yesterday on Twitter, the discussion came up once again, and it was cool to watch all the responses filter in among our little fishbowl community. By and large, Yankees fans across the board could go to war on this topic for days and not reach any sort of resolution.

My personal opinion is that the Yankees spent almost three years building Chamberlain up for this opportunity to start without rules or restrictions, so they’d be silly not to at least give him a chance to win a rotation spot. But as Joba told me in June, “I could win 20 games and people are still going to think I could save 50.”

He’s probably right. Now I’ll let the fans speak the rest of the way: 


He should start. Still so young.

AlexLytwyn Joba is an amped up guy that gives it his all for one inning. when he’s composed for 5-7 innings, he loses his touch imo.

SwiftRead Joba is ahead of Hughes in every pitching category, esp IP & ERA. Hughes limit of 150 innings to Joba’s 200 says it all.

Guitarinsight Wait…didn’t Joba GET a chance? He seemed to do much better coming off the bench than starting.

SimplySmoov Joba could do undefeated in the next three seasons and people will STILL say he should be in the bullpen

dofferdahl Joba will never win 20 in a season, he’s just not that good. he needs to stay in the pen where he’s lethal.

MarcusBlumberg I would start Joba and send Hughes to Triple-A, where he builds his innings and would be ready if needed…


no room at the inn…joba has no limits this year, he pitched great for
what? 110 IP? joba=5. He SHOULD be in aaa instead of pen.


surely they both end up in the rotation eventually. All I know is that it’s a good problem to have.

mikeyjoy87 what are point of Joba rules past 3 yrs if we dont FINALLY see what he
can do when let loose? Joba needs to be in the rotation!!!

dofferdahl both are lousy starters, but are great relievers, Hughes is better setup to be a setup guy, Joba is better setup to close.

carlibabes Love Joba but Hughes should get the starter job.


I say give Joba no restrictions and a start every fifth day. If it’s
not as good as what he can do coming out of the pen, too bad

Mmedina210 Joba Chamberlain will never approach 20 wins as a starter but as a closer could save 50+. He’s terrible as a starter!

KathyFL1 From what I’ve seen so far he belongs in the pen, but until we see him off the Joba rules we really won’t know will we?

jakelarsen 75 high-leverage 1-2 Inning appearances>30-32 varying inning amount starts

And finally…

j_sprouse2213 there seems to be more people in the fanbase that think he should relieve than start.

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