Baseball notebook

Cashman has unfinished business in NY

Associated Press / October 2, 2008
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One day after re-signing with the Yankees, general manager Brian Cashman sat down behind a microphone and immediately was asked if he gave any serious thought to leaving.

Indeed, he did.

So then, what made him stay after New York missed the playoffs this year for the first time since 1993?

"If I left, I was not going to like the story that was going to be written," Cashman said firmly during a 40-minute news conference yesterday at Yankee Stadium.

"The only way for me to change that is to change the story. So I'm staying to change the story."

Cashman agreed Tuesday to a three-year contract to remain general manager, a deal that runs through 2011. He was promoted to GM in 1997 and his current deal was set to expire at the end of this month.

Cashman was expected to re-sign, especially after co-chairman Hank Steinbrenner told him earlier this season that the team wanted him back. But there had been rumblings that Cashman might be interested in running another club - perhaps one without such a vocal, hands-on ownership group.

"I care about my name and I care about how I'm perceived and I care about this franchise," Cashman said. "There's a story I want to have written here and the only way to make sure it's written is to suck it up and win."

Quentin still out

Injured White Sox outfielder Carlos Quentin was not listed on the playoff roster posted in the White Sox clubhouse at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla., a day before Game 1 of their American League Division Series against Tampa Bay.

Quentin was leading the league in home runs when he broke his right wrist Sept. 1 after slamming it on his bat in frustration. He has not given up on playing again should the White Sox advance in the postseason, and was hitting off a tee.

"As long I keep taking swings, I think they keep an eye on that," Quentin said. "I'm trying to do what I can to get back."

The All-Star left fielder hit 36 home runs with 100 RBIs this season, batting .288 in 130 games.

The lineup for the White Sox in the opener: shortstop Orlando Cabrera, left field DeWayne Wise, right field Jermaine Dye, designated hitter Jim Thome, first base Paul Konerko, center field Ken Griffey Jr., second base Alexei Ramirez, catcher A.J. Pierzynski, and third base Juan Uribe.

No surgery for Jones

The Braves said an MRI on Chipper Jones's right shoulder Tuesday showed acute tendinitis, but the overall structure is normal and the third baseman will not need surgery. The Braves' orthopedist has prescribed therapy for the 36-year-old, followed by a strength program. Jones won the National League batting title with a .364 average. He had 22 home runs and 75 RBIs but played in only 128 games and was limited to pinch hitting in the final week of the season . . . Cardinals pitcher Chris Carpenter will not have surgery for a nerve problem in his shoulder, and the righthander hopes to be ready for spring training after therapy and rest. Carpenter, 33, pitched just 15 1/3 innings this season after returning from reconstructive elbow surgery in July, going 0-1 with a 1.76 ERA . . . Mets lefthander Johan Santana had arthroscopic surgery on torn cartilage in his left knee and he expects to be ready for spring training. He tore his meniscus before his final start but still pitched a three-hit shutout Saturday on short rest against the Marlins to temporarily keep the Mets' playoff hopes alive. Santana went 16-7 with a 2.53 ERA after coming over from the Twins in February in a trade. The two-time AL Cy Young Award winner is in the first season of a six-year, $137.5 million contract . . . The Astros declined the club option on Doug Brocail, though GM Ed Wade said the team would try to re-sign the 41-year-old reliever for next season. Brocail went 7-5 with a 3.93 ERA and two saves in a career-high 72 appearances in 2008 . . . Lanny Frattare is retiring at age 60 after 33 seasons as a Pirates announcer, the longest tenure for a broadcaster in the club's 122-year history.

Attendance down

Major League Baseball's attendance dropped by 1.1 percent this year, ending a streak of four straight record seasons. Baseball finished with 78.6 million total fans and an average of 32,539, the commissioner's office said. That was down from 79.5 million in 2007. However, the Red Sox, Mets, Yankees, Cubs, Tigers, Brewers, and Phillies all set home attendance records . . . The average selling price for the three Cubs games at Wrigley Field against the Dodgers is $320, according to StubHub, a subsidiary of EBay Inc. and the official ticket reseller of MLB. First-round playoff tickets for the Red Sox vs. Angels at Fenway Park are selling for an average of $194, the second-highest price. The Rays, who play the White Sox, have the lowest sale price at $87.

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