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June 4, 2007 June 4, 2007

Posted by atlanticleaguenews in Uncategorized.
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Today’s Headlines: Former AL Team Doctor Accuses Players Of Drug Use…Everybody Loves Jason…Brownlie Returns To Commerce Bank Ballpark…Figueroa Back; Mercado Next?…Weatherby To Ottawa…Zinter Feature Thursday

Former AL Team Doctor Accuses Players Of Drug Use: In this Nashua Telegraph article by Tom King, Nashua Pride team doctor Pierre Dionne says he was frequently approached by players in the Atlantic League for drug and steroid-related paraphenelia.

“The Can-Am League is crystal clean,” Dionne told the paper.

“The last two years, from what I’ve seen, I have not been approached (by players) once. The Atlantic League, five years ago it was peaking. . . . It wasn’t unusual to come here every other day and be approached.”

There’s a lot more in the article, so it’s definitely worth the read.

Everybody Loves Jason: Ryan Dunleavy of The Courier News reports that the Somerset Patriots will be signing OF Jason Romano and re-signing P Jeff Urban.

Romano is a former first round draft pick, selected 39th overall by the Texas Rangers in 1997. He’s played for them, the Rockies, Dodgers, Devil Rays and Reds in the big leagues.

Urban’s return is an interesting one, as he had originally agreed to sign with Somerset, but then backed out of the deal to sign in the American Association. After getting rocked there, he’s heading back to the Patriots, and Brett Jodie doesn’t seem too thrilled to have him back.

“I talked to him Friday night at length and made it clear I didn’t appreciate it,” Jodie told the paper.

“He was apologetic and I said, ‘All you had to do was call me and tell me the truth.’ But we didn’t part with any hard feelings.”

Brownlie Returns To Commerce Bank Ballpark: While he was a standout at Rutgers, Newark Bears P Bobby Brownlie pitched in the Big East Tournament back when it was held at Somerset’s Commerce Bank Ballpark.

If you saw him then, you never thought you’d see him playing there on a regular basis. But throwing 88 miles per hour now compared to the 95 he was used to back then, Brownlie finds himself throwing off the Bridgewater mound for the first time as a professional.

“I have four career starts here,” Brownlie said, noting he posted a 2-2 record at CBB, with both wins coming as a freshman.

The second of those two wins was when he led the Scarlet Knights to the Big East Championship, facing Seton Hall in the title game.

“I’ve been to a few places, like Lakewood, but this one of the first places I came to outside of something like (watching) a big league game,” he said.

The former Cubs prospect anticipates having his own cheering section on the road.

“There probably won’t be as many people because I can’t leave as many tickets with it being on the road,” Brownlie said. “But I’m sure there will be a lot of people here.”

Figueroa Back; Mercado Next?: Rich Elliott of The Connecticut Post reports that 3B Luis Figueroa has been released by his Mexican League team and could return to Bridgeport as soon as today.

Figueroa led the Atlantic League with 25 RBI at the time of his departure.

Elliott also writes that the team has had talks with P Hector Mercado, who pitched for Bridgeport in 2005. Mercado has pitched in the big leagues for the Reds and Phillies.

Weatherby to Ottawa: P Charlie Weatherby, who spent some time with Lancaster last season, has been called up to Triple-A Ottawa by the Phillies.

Zinter Feature Thursday: I was able to spend about 15 minutes with Patriots INF Alan Zinter yesterday afternoon, and I’ll have a feature on the 39-year-old in Thursday’s edition of The Hunterdon County Democrat. – Mike Ashmore

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1. LIpaperlantern - June 4, 2007

this article on ESPN.com this week lists Bobby Brownlie as being “out of baseball”…not the best journalism

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/draft2007/columns/story?columnist=law_keith&id=2892330

2. Voltaire - June 4, 2007

It never clicked, reading your blog, that Alan Zinter of the Patriots was the same Alan Zinter who was a non-roster invitee to my Indians spring training! Good for him.

3. BoosterBabe - June 5, 2007

Just read the article about the Nashua Pride doctor. Towards the beginning, he mentioned Mo Vaughn playing for Nashua. Huh? See here:

“On May 21, 1998, he began his “availability.” He was awestruck.
“Holy (bleep),” Dionne remembers. “There’s Mo Vaughn. Felix Jose, who at the time had been promoted as the next Triple Crown winner. Milt Cuyler, I can still see walking through that locker room door. “Mo looks like a kid. He looks like a big Sinbad, he has the earrings. And I’m sitting next to him and he says, ‘To have good offense, you have to hit the ball. To have good defense, you have to catch the ball.’ I’m saying, ‘I can compete with this.’ ”

Did I miss Mo Vaughn in the Atlantic League? My Dad and I were Bluefish fans from day one and Dad was a tremendous Mo Vaughn fan (and the Red Sox in general). I can’t imagine Dad wouldn’t have noticed Vaughn on the roster for the Pride.
Last time I checked Mo’s stats, he played in Boston from 91-98, moved to Anaheim in 99 and then played for the Mets from 2002-03.

He didn’t play at all the last year of my Dad’s life (2001)…I think he was hurt. Mo bought all his dress clothes from my Dad at a men’s store near his home of Norwalk, CT from 1991-1996. The store closed in 96 and Dad lost touch with him, but Mo would come by during the off-season during the early 90’s, his SUV loaded with toys for the TOys for Tots campaign they ran at the store. From what I saw of Mo and how he treated my Dad, he was good people. No one but my Dad could help him at that store. If Dad wasn’t there, he came back when he was. Very loyal, very nice.

Anyway, I’m trying to figure out when this doctor would have treated Mo Vaughn on the Pride….

Anyone have any ideas or did someone not check their facts??

4. chuckerd58 - June 5, 2007

You can say all you want about Mo Vaughn the baseball player,but,I don’t think anyone can say he wasn’t a totally class person. Alway’s good with the fan’s,especially the kids. I alway’s liked him. I don’t think he ever played in the AL either.

5. BoosterBabe - June 5, 2007

Hi Chuck,
I would NEVER EVER say anything bad about Mo Vaughn, especially based on his warmth towards my Dad and how nice he was to us when we went to Fenway in 95. And for a few years there (before he got hurt) we figured he was gonna be one of the greats of the game. Unfortunately, he got hurt and he was never the same. To this day, Mo will sign anything for anyone, anywhere, for hours, until the last kid leaves. He is very grounded and never forgot he was just a kid from Norwalk who made it to the show.

I would love to reach out to him and let him know my dad passed on in 2002. Dad always spoke fondly of Mo and I’m sure Mo would remember him. I only spoke with him once, at Fenway, and it was only to be introduced and I think he shook my hand (stupid Sheryl didn’t think to take a photo) but he was very loyal to my Dad. I will always hold a special fondness for Mo Vaughn, just because he was so kind to my Dad. It meant so much to him that the star (at the time) of his Red Sox (and they were HIS Red Sox!!! Just like I refer to the Bluefish and the Sox as “my boys”. As in “Gotta go! Am going down to the Yard to watch my boys”) knew who he was and only bought clothing from him.

By the way, I emailed the author of the article and he clarified that Mo did not play for the AL. He was a close friend of (then manager) Mike Easler’s and Mo threw out the first pitch on May 21, 1998, which was opening day for the Nashua Pride. He said he shouldn’t have read as if he played for the team, and he can easily understand the confusion. (I’m paraphrasing).

It’s so weird. I”ve always had this special affinity for baseball players. I had a huge crush on Jon Matlack and Tug McGraw of the Mets in 1973. As a 10 year old, my bedroom walls were plastered with pictures of David Cassidy, Donny Osmond (just like most other little girls at the time) but also Tom Seaver, Tug McGraw and Jon Matlack! In 1975, the first boy I ever noticed was “cute” was a 3rd baseman for the little league team that played at the neighborhood park where I grew up. And as I recall…I tried to get his attention by leaving a box of homemade cookies in the dugout with his name on it! And 32 years later I’m STILL baking cookies for ballplayers!!! Well, I’m consistent, if nothing else.

Anyway, yeah, Mo Vaughn is Class with a capital C and I wonder what he’s doing these days?

6. chuckerd58 - June 5, 2007

Hi Boosterbabe,I wasn’t trying to imply that you where saying anything bad about Mo.,just saying he was a class act,but alot of people just look at his time with the Met’s and think of him as a bum because of that. It’s nice that you have your memories of your late dad,i also have the same kind of memories of my late dad teaching me about baseball and life in general. Know,one of my biggest thrills is bringing my kids to Duck game’s and having them njoy it,and teaching them about the game,and hopefully they will alway’s remember these times.

7. BoosterBabe - June 5, 2007

Yeah…my Dad loved coming to BLuefish games. It was one of those nice things we could do together. Dad woulda been 81 this year. So he wasn’t of the generation where you were supposed to be “friends” with your kids. The fact that we had something like the Bluefish we could share, socially, at that stage of our lives (Him in his 70’s, me in my late 30’s) gave a new dimension to our family because he’d come out to the ballpark with me, he’d meet my friends, he’d meet the players, we’d all hang out….it was so unexpected and enjoyable.
That first season was SO difficult. I was at the games every night almost but I rarely watched them closely b/c i was so in the habit of calling dad on my cell phone on the way home to tell him what happened during the game. (when he wasn’t with me), and it hurt that he was no longer on the other end of the phone waiting for that call. I got over it but it took awhile. Now I watch (or listen to) every pitch.
My Dad listened to the Red Sox on the Radio every single night–usually with a Mets or Yankees game on the tv. It drove my Mom batty! But hey, I do it myself now. It just seems normal to me because that’s what I saw Dad do growing up. Don’t worry, my Mom gave me a warped sense of what was normal with other things, so they screwed me up equally!!!! And I adored them both, with all their craziness, and contrary to what my brother and sister seem to think, they were wonderful parents and I miss them every single dayl. But never more than when I’m involved with baseball. NOthing sparked more fights in our house between them than baseball. My Mom almost left him during the 1967 playoffs and World Series!!!!!! (Her sister sat her down and said “at least you know where your husband is every night. He’s home, listening to the radio–he’s not out chasing other women or drinking. Let him have his baseball!”)
It’s cool that you bring your kids to the Ducks games. They will remember it.


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