The things you find out on the field at Fenway Park. Couple of people who know J.P. Ricciardi pretty well told me on Monday that the Toronto Blue Jays general manager was told by Blue Jays ownership as far back as June that he was coming back for the 2009 season, despite the fact the only thing approaching a formal statement of intent was made during the final home game by out-going president and C.E.O. Paul Godfrey. According to the sources, Ricciardi knew he was coming back shortly after making the decision to fire John Gibbons and replace him with Cito Gaston.
Oh, and the A.J. Burnett Sweepstakes are officially underway. The New York Post's George King has Burnett's agent, Darek Braunecker, saying that the Yankees are NOT included on his clients no-trade list.
Took the train down to Philadelphia from Boston this morning. Lots of glum-looking guys in pin-striped suits. Soundtrack for the trip was Best of The Guess Who, Joe Strummer and The Mescaleros, Left of The Dial punk/new wave comp and Arcade Fire. Dave Sheinin of the Washington Post, my personal music advisor, is talking up "The Gaslight Anthem," out of New Brunswick, N.J. Going to try and find said CD. Reading: Darkmans, by Nicola Barker.
I was right on half of my first-round picks, correctly getting the Phillies and Rays although I thought the Phillies would sweep. In ALCS, I'm calling Dodgers in six games and Red Sox in six - although I think the Rays have a really good shot and the Red Sox are a hurting group, it wouldn't look good to jump on the bandwagon at this point.