A-Rod gives new meaning to 'Mr. Franchise' moniker

The Baltimore Sun

News item: If Alex Rodriguez becomes a free agent, the word on the street is he'll seek a 12-year contract worth $360 million.

My take: In other words, agent Scott Boras thinks A-Rod is worth $1 million more than the entire Orioles franchise, based on the value of the club estimated by Forbes last year.

Bonus take: Sounds about right.

News item: Steve McNair missed two days of practice with a sore back and probably will not start today's game against the St. Louis Rams.

My take: Don't get too excited, all you latter-day Kyle Boller fans. Even if Boller plays and plays well, McNair still will be the man.

News item: Major League Baseball lawyer Tom Carlucci reportedly told team executives on a recent conference call that the George Mitchell steroid report would name lots of previously undisclosed names and included details that are "salacious."

My take: This whole thing started with Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire in a bathroom stall. How much more salacious could it get?

News item: One of the co-defendants in the O.J. Simpson memorabilia robbery case has reached a plea deal and will testify that guns were involved in the Las Vegas break-in that led to Simpson's arrest on multiple felony charges.

My take: It's starting to look as if all O.J. has going for him is all the public goodwill he has built up over the past 15 years.

News item: The New York Yankees' upper management team has postponed until this week a meeting that might decide the fate of manager Joe Torre.

My take: Dry your tears. George Steinbrenner's recent comments aside, I don't think Torre is going anywhere.

News item: Former Orioles general manager Frank Wren has replaced John Schuerholz as general manager of the Atlanta Braves.

My take: Lest anyone forget, Frank was the guy who got fired by Peter Angelos for leaving Cal Ripken on the airport runway.

News item: The Colorado Rockies have won 19 of their past 20 games and hold a 2-0 lead over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the National League Championship Series.

My take: They're on an unbelievable run, but I can't help thinking the pendulum is about to swing back with a vengeance.

News item: Cowboys coach Wade Phillips contends that he never said the three Super Bowl championships won by the New England Patriots were tainted because of Spygate.

My take: Glad to hear it. I don't see how anyone could impugn the character of a great guy like Bill Belichick.

News item: Roger Clemens won't entirely rule out returning for a 25th season in 2008.

My take: Don't worry. The Rocket has landed at home for good. He's just keeping his options open to help persuade the Yankees to rehire Torre.

News item: Baseball commissioner Bud Selig said Friday that he is willing to let major league general managers examine the possibility of instituting a video replay system to correct bad calls.

My take: I've long been opposed to instant replay in baseball, but - upon further review - maybe it's worth a look.

News item: The Orioles fired pitching coach Leo Mazzone after two seasons in which the pitching staff ranked 29th in the major leagues in team ERA.

My take: It probably didn't help that he alienated several key members of the organization along the way.

News item: Southern California dropped to 10th in the Associated Press poll last week after suffering a shocking loss to 41-point underdog Stanford.

My take: The Trojans should count their blessings. I'm a big fan, but I don't think you should still be in the top 10 after you lose to the chess club.


Listen to Peter Schmuck on WBAL (1090 AM) at noon Saturdays and Sundays.

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