This is kind of a telling quote from Ocker's story:
''Yes, I'm interested in making a deal,'' Shapiro said Monday. ''I still spend a lot of time talking to other general managers, getting the lay of the land. There are areas I would like to see get incrementally better. You always want to improve your pitching depth. But I'm pretty happy with the position players in camp.''
Shapiro's biggest concern is the starting pitching is his biggest concern this season, which leads me to this passage from Ocker's story:
A rumor surfaced 10 days ago that Shapiro was courting free agent Pedro Martinez. Asked about it Monday, the GM rubbed his thumb and index finger together, indicating that money is a sticking point.
Martinez, believed to be asking for between $5 million and $8 million during the winter on a one-year contract, apparently hasn't come off those numbers, at least not much.
''We like the guy,'' Shapiro said. ''We expressed interest in him during the off season.''
A lot of interesting tidbits though. Shapiro thinks that Hafner is just lacking his timing and will hit with authority when that returns.
He is impressed with the young talent in camp and calls it a bright spot.
On catcher Carlos Santana's throwing ability.
"He's as gifted throwing as any guy I've ever seen outside of Pudge [Ivan Rodriguez] early in his career," said Shapiro.
MLB.com beat writer Anthony Castrovince answered his mail bag today with a lot of questions about Travis Hafner and one odd question about Bob Wickman playing without the tip of his finger and the chances Adam Miller could do the same thing.
This party has officially ended. After being blessed to experience 23 years of playing professional baseball in front of the world’s best fans in so many different places, it is with zero regrets that I am making my retirement official.
Same Fish, new pond
The Marlins will be renamed the Miami Marlins when they move into their new retractable-roof stadium that will seat 37,000 on the Orange Bowl grounds. It should open by 2012.
Ichiro hit a two-out, two-run single in the 10th inning to win it.
Indian's right fielder Shin-Soo Choo, playing for South Korea, hit his second home run of the WBC in the fifth inning.