The height of ridiculousness?

The Flip Side

April 13, 2009|By COMPILED FROM NEWS SERVICE AND WEB REPORTS

Don't want no short people? That might be fine for Randy Newman, but don't tell it to the York Revolution.

The Atlantic League club is conducting what could be called Eddie Gaedel Version 2.0. During its spring training this week, the Revolution has invited Dave Flood to camp. Flood, who formerly worked for the Tampa Bay Rays, is 3 feet 2.

The idea was sparked by research in a book by television producer Todd Gallagher, Andy Roddick Beat Me with a Frying Pan, who touts the effectiveness of having a pinch hitter basically guaranteed to walk every time he comes to the plate.

Revolution chairman Peter Kirk said in a news release: "Todd called and asked whether we would assist in the experiment, and we felt that spring training would be a great time to try to answer the question. Most baseball innovations began in the minor leagues, including night games, promotions, the designated hitter, and even Jackie Robinson's breaking of the color barrier. I would like to believe that somewhere, Bill Veeck, Charlie Finley and Syd Thrift are smiling their approval."

Veeck, while owner of the St. Louis Browns in 1951, used 3-7 Gaedel as a pinch hitter. He drew a walk in his only at-bat, but, shortly thereafter, his contract was ruled invalid.

According to a statistical analysis by Baseball Prospectus, a player who's a sure thing to walk once a game would be more valuable than St. Louis Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols.

Adam Gladstone, Revolution director of baseball operations, said: "Certainly, I would think a player like that would have value. This forces our baseball staff to devise a strategy on how to best utilize his skills to help our ballclub. But is a guy with a high on-base percentage attractive? Heck, yeah. We just need to determine how to best use him."

So send along those ideas to the Revolution's manager, former Orioles catcher Chris Hoiles.

One suggestion, though: Make your notes short.

Daly dose

John Daly was at the Masters this year. He wasn't playing, but he still was cashing.

SI.com reported Daly set up for business in a bus near Augusta National, selling merchandise bearing his name, such as caps and shirts. Daly, who is serving a six-month suspension from the PGA Tour, apparently has dropped about 40 pounds. "J.D., looking good, dog!" one fan - maybe trying to sound like American Idol's Randy Jackson - yelled out to Daly, according to SI.com.

Compiled from news service and Web reports by Mr. Flip, who still hasn't unloaded all of his "I Know Mr. Flip" T-shirts.

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