OFF THE WALL
Because Cal Ripken Jr. will be inducted into the Hall of Fame today, it is interesting to note that on the same day 24 years ago -- July 29, 1983 -- Steve Garvey ended his National League record of 1,207 consecutive games played after dislocating his thumb in a collision at home plate with Atlanta Braves pitcher Pascual Perez. Garvey's streak is less than half of Ripken's 2,632. Garvey, a career .292 hitter with 2,599 hits, 272 home runs and 1,308 runs batted in, was on the Hall of Fame ballot for the 15th and final time this year and did not get in.
July 31 is the non-waiver trade deadline, and a number of big names have been bandied about, but so far no blockbusters. Tadahito Iguchi and Kenny Lofton aren't exactly impact players. The rumor mill is cranking on Mark Teixeira, especially in Anaheim. Other names being churned out: Jermaine Dye, Sammy Sosa, Adam Dunn and Johnny Damon. Many teams are looking for pitching help, but the pool of available talent there is shallow, considering that Jon Garland of the Chicago White Sox could be the prize catch of the class.
It's a fact
Tom Glavine of the New York Mets will make his first attempt at win No. 300 Tuesday night at Milwaukee, and with Randy Johnson of the Arizona Diamondbacks headed for back surgery, Glavine could be the last to reach the milestone for some time. Johnson has 284 wins and says he'll be back next year, but he'll be 44 on opening day and has now needed back surgery in consecutive years. The only other active pitchers with more than 200 wins are: Mike Mussina (38 years old, 244 wins), David Wells (44, 235); Jamie Moyer (44, 225); Curt Schilling (40, 213); Kenny Rogers (42, 210); Pedro Martinez (35, 206); and John Smoltz (40, 203).
MINOR LEAGUE REPORT
TROJANS IN THE MINORS
IAN KENNEDY, P
Scranton/Wilkes Barre; triple A
Kennedy, 22, continued his quick rise through the Yankees' system when he earned a promotion to triple A last week. The right-hander from Westminster La Quinta High, drafted in the first round last year, was a combined 11-2 with a 1.85 earned-run average in stops at Class A and double A this year and leads the Yankees' minor league system with 129 strikeouts. His 11 wins are tied for the organization lead. The Pacific 10 Conference pitcher of the year in 2005, Kennedy was named a midseason minor league all-star by Baseball America. Opponents are batting only .174 against him this season and he walked only 39 batters in 111 2/3 innings.
JEFF CLEMENT, C
Tacoma; triple A
A power-hitting catcher with an above-average throwing arm, Clement was the third overall selection in the 2005 draft after winning the Johnny Bench Award as the nation's top collegiate catcher and earning All-American honors. This year, he has found the power stroke that made him the second-leading home run hitter in USC history behind Mark McGwire and allowed him to set a national high school record with 75. He has 16 home runs with 55 RBIs at Tacoma, a Mariners farm team, and is batting .266. He sat out much of last season after having surgeries on his knee and his elbow and batted .263 with six home runs and 42 RBIs in 82 games split between double A and triple A.