It's early January and the free agency scene has stalled. Spring Training is still more than a month away. The majority of ink being spilled about the game right now revolves around Hall of Fame ballots, and those conversations are as worn out as the Notre Dame secondary. That may be why this MLB.com piece on Jody Gerut by Anthony Castrovince interested me so much.
Gerut, 35, has been out of baseball for going on three seasons and was last a useful player in 2008. He's one of the smart players who learned to do one of the most important things any athlete can: control your money. As Castrovince notes, Gerut is now an agent, helping educate players on how to handle their finances. He's especially concerned about Latin American players, who have higher bankruptcy rates than other players. It's nice seeing a former player take an interest in the game in his post-playing days. Rays fans have seen some of that with Jared Sandberg, and Rocco Baldelli both continuing in baseball in different capacities after their retirements.
The biggest story in sports last night was Alabama's complete domination of Notre Dame in the BCS National Title Game. They won 42-14 and it wasn't even that close. It's a shame we don't get to see what a fellow one loss team like Oregon would do against Alabama. Better than the game itself was all of the attention being paid to Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron's girlfriend, Katherine Webb. Brent Musburger, who was announcing the game for ESPN, made some vaguely creepy comments about her and Georgia QB Aaron Murray was openly courting her to become a Bulldogs fan. I hope McCarron doesn't go home and check her mentions on Twitter.
-Bill Chastain has a story for raysbaseball.com about Alex Cobb fighting for a rotation spot (he shouldn't have to fight hard) that starts out with him and Matt Moore teasing each other about gaining weight. It's...strange.
-Also in Rays news, they made some changes in their scouting ranks. There are a lot of moves there so make sure you take a look, if you're into that sort of thing.
-I know I said the Hall of Fame debates were worn out, but, not one CBS writer voted for Bagwell or Piazza, and only one voted for Biggio. But they all voted for Morris. Not that it should come as a surprise from Jon Heyman, Danny Knobler, and Scott Miller. It's looking more likely that Biggio won't be elected, and that's a shame. But, hey, Tim Raines is getting more love, so that's something.
-Wezen-Ball heaps a lot of praise on Jeff Bagwell. Deservedly so.