Today's scheduled meeting with Joe Torre was pushed back by nearly a half hour, partially because Torre was meeting with Ned Colletti and scout Vance Lovelace, among others. Some of the players in the locker room were joking that "the reaper is in there," and were generally in a playful mood. James McDonald and Brent Leach both said that being traded wasn't something they can control, so there's no reason to worry about it. Both said they didn't let a distraction like that affect them on the field.
Here are some notes from the meeting with Torre:
- Torre said he meets with Ned Colletti and staff every day regarding the upcoming trading deadline. The club is looking to add pitching, was the only detail provided.
- Manny Ramirez has a sore hand, and that's why he's out of the lineup. He is available to pinch hit. Torre doesn't expect him to need a day off during the road trip, even in the midst of 20 games in 20 days, because there are no day games following a night game.
- Torre couldn't have expected such a good record at this point in the season, and that the club has been fortunate to be in so many close games at home. Torre noted they have an advantage being able to use Jonathan Broxton in a tie game, while the road team "can't." (I didn't get a chance to follow up on this one)
- Jeff Weaver and James McDonald will be today's backup for Jason Schmidt, with Torre noting the club has "a lot of length" available in the bullpen today
- Guillermo Mota has been great, especially after tweaking his delivery, allowing him to gain control while still keeping his velocity.
- Hong-Chih Kuo will likely be activated during the road trip, although nothing is definite yet
- Cory Wade will pitch a rehab assignment game with Albuquerque Monday night
- Ronald Belisario might begin a rehab assignment by the end of the week
- Torre praised Hanley Ramirez for his ability to hit the other way. Torre likes Hanley's chances at capturing the batting title. The subject of infield hits was brought up, comparing Hanley and Albert Pujols, but Torre, who won the 1971 NL batting title, noted sluggers get infield hits too, especially when infielders are forced to play deep. Torre also playfully noted that defensive stats on Astroturf should come with an asterisk because Dave Concepcion was able to play so deep to rob him of hits, and also used the turf to bounce his throws to first.