It was on this day in 1948 that Babe Ruth made his last public appearance at Yankee Stadium during a celebration of the Stadium's 25th anniversary. With several of his teammates from the 1923 World Series champion Yankees looking on, Ruth's #3 uniform number was retired, marking the second retired number in Yankees history after Lou Gehrig's #4 was immortalized in 1939. Ruth passed away soon after this ceremony, on August 16, 1948.
Since the Babe grew up in Baltimore and spent his whole career in New York and Boston, let's stick to some items from the east coast….
- The Blue Jays have focused on drafting high schoolers under GM Alex Anthopoulos, a strategy that Fangraphs' Reed MacPhail says is a sign that Toronto is ready to spend what it takes to get their picks signed.
- A Jose Reyes extension could look like the disastrous contracts given to Luis Castillo and Chone Figgins if Reyes' speed lessens as it did with those players, points out Joel Sherman of the New York Post. That said, Sherman asks "If Reyes played for another team wouldn’t the Mets be going crazy trying to sign him in the offseason? Especially if they were pretending to be the big-market team that ownership wants to claim this franchise still is?"
- Reyes' "value is greater to the Mets than to other clubs." writes MLB.com's Marty Noble, who thinks the Mets should try to keep such a valuable asset.
- Granden Goetzman, a second-round pick of the Rays (75th overall) tells The Bradenton Herald's Prep Rally blog that he will sign with the club tomorrow provided he passes a physical.
- The Phillies have had interest in Rockies outfielder Ryan Spilborghs in the past, tweets Troy Renck of the Denver Post. Renck isn't sure if Spilborghs is still on the Phils' radar as they search for right-handed hitting outfielders.
- The Phillies released catcher Joel Naughton to create Triple-A roster space for Jason Grilli's activation from the DL, tweets MLB.com's Todd Zolecki. Naughton (a native of Melbourne, Australia) has a career minor league line of .261/.318/.356 in seven seasons, though he only has 13 plate appearances above the high Class-A level.
- The Red Sox have reached agreements with seven of their 2011 draft picks, reports WEEI.com's Alex Speier. Sixth-rounder Miguel Pena is the highest-drafted of the signed players.