--Greetings from Yankee Stadium. There's a palpable excitement in the air about tonight's pitching matchup, but at this point, that excitement is coming from the teams and media. Very few people in their seats.
Anyway, we've discussed here that Cliff Lee has never pitched on three days' rest in his entire career. It became a story during last year's World Series when he pitched Games 1 and 5 and his old pal CC Sabathia pitched Games 1 and 4.
Well, according to a person in the loop, Lee has expressed a willingness to pitch on three days' rest in this ALCS. If, say, the Rangers are trailing the Yankees, 3-2, when the series returns to Texas for Game 6, I think you can expect to see Lee start Friday night. The Rangers wouldn't want to end their season with Lee sitting in the dugout, preparing for a Game 7 that never comes.
It's a fluid situation, obviously; we have to see how Lee comes out of tonight's start. But it's something to monitor.
--The Mets announced that they will interview Dana Brown, special assistant to Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos, on Wednesday. I can't say I know much about Brown. I've never met him.
As an African-American, Brown fulfills the Mets' requirement (established by Major League Baseball) that they interview a minority candidate. You hope that's not the only reason he got the call. But I think the idea here is that, even if Brown comes in as an extreme long shot, he gets the opportunity to leave a positive impression with Mets officials.
Meanwhile, the Mets clarified some confusion concerning Sandy Alderson. Contrary to a report that Alderson has a second-round interview this week, Alderson will merely come to Citi Field Thursday for the second part of his interview with Jeff Wilpon and John Ricco. But the bottom line is that Alderson remains the strong favorite to get the job.
--However, Alderson won't be hiring his old pal Tony La Russa, as La Russa has decided to return to the Cardinals for his 16th season.
It stood to reason that La Russa wouldn't want to end his ultra-successful career on the ugly note that the '10 Cardinals, and goodness, the man needs two more seasons to pass John McGraw as the second-winningest manager in baseball history; La Russa has 2,638 wins and McGraw 2,763.
That's pretty amazing, especially since the leader Connie Mack hung around as long as he did only because he owned the Philadelphia Athletics.
What everyone wants to know is, what does this mean for Colby Rasmus? The talented centerfielder clashed with La Russa last season. I'd expect GM John Mozeliak to try to hammer out a peace agreement. The Cardinals aren't talented enough to just give away someone with Rasmus' skills.