Second chance brewing for desperate Gibbons

Bill's Rant

July 24, 2008|By BILL ORDINE

Jay Gibbons is getting a second chance with a major league organization. It's in the Milwaukee Brewers minor league system, but that's all Gibbons has been asking for since he was cut loose by the Orioles in spring training.

Once a fan favorite in Baltimore, Gibbons fell on hard times at the plate last season, and things got worse when he was named in the Mitchell Report for having received a shipment of human growth hormone after baseball had banned it.

Last year's down season, the association with performance-enhancing drugs and a miserable spring combined to keep major league teams at a distance from Gibbons. Keep in mind that the Orioles still owed him about $12 million, but for Gibbons, the issue was playing the game.

In desperation, he sent a letter to the other 29 major league teams essentially begging for a chance in the minors. The only taker was the independent Long Island Ducks of the Atlantic League. There, Gibbons did OK. He was hitting .280 with five homers and 19 RBIs in 27 games.

Then the call came from the Brewers. He's expected to go to Double-A Huntsville and then maybe to Triple-A Nashville.

It's what Gibbons asked for - the rest is up to him.

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