Yesterday, Bret Boone tearfully announced that he was retiring from baseball, citing that the sport had become a job, and he had lost his passion for the game.
Passion, eh? So that’s what they’re calling steroids these days. I guess I’m a little behind the times.
I have mixed feelings about Boone’s retirement. On the one hand, I’m convinced his sudden power surge from ages 32-34, then just as sudden power outage in 2005, had something to do with juice (and not the kind you call “oj”). On the other hand, I held fast to this tiny shred of hope that somehow, someway, through some undetectable synthetic drug (perhaps the one Jason Giambi used in the second half last year), Boone would recapture the magic, the biceps, and the Gold Glove style, win the Comeback Juicer … er, Player, of the Year, and spark the Mets to their first pennant since 2000.
That hope is gone, and Crapsui remains the incumbent. With Jeff Keppinger suffering from back problems and a “bench guy” label, the second base job looks to be a two-horse race between Kaz Matsui and Anderson Hernandez. Even though AHern had a breakout year in the minors in 2005, then was the Rookie of the Year in the Ligas de Beisbol del Caribe, he still has options and he doesn’t make nine million dollars. Kaz does, however, so unless Ahern bats .500 this spring, expect him to win the job.