Mike Napoli reveals hip condition
Boston Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli revealed Tuesday that he has avascular necrosis in both hips,
the same degenerative condition that ended the career of two-sport star Bo Jackson.
But Napoli said that because the condition was discovered in its early stages and is being treated with
medication, he sees no reason why he can't play this season.
Avascular necrosis, known by its acronym AVN and also known as osteonecrosis (ON), is a progressive,
degenerative disorder that kills bone tissue. According to AVNSupport.org, it is caused by a blockage
or loss of blood flow to a joint or bone, causing the joint/bone to die.
"Usually, but not always, the hips are first affected, then other joints may follow," according to
information on the site. "It can strike any bone or joint in the body. The bone tissue/joints actually die,
just as heart muscle tissue dies from a heart attack."
Napoli has played seven years in the majors but said the condition was not discovered until he underwent
a physical after agreeing to a three-year, $39 million contract with the Red Sox in early December.
The discovery of the condition caused the Red Sox to revise their original offer. Seven weeks later, Napoli
signed a one-year, $5 million deal that could be worth $13 million with performance bonuses.
"Obviously, it was a pretty tough offseason," Napoli said in a conference call Tuesday, adding it was a
"shock" to him to learn of the AVN. "But we think we've got it figured out. We saw a bunch of doctors, got
a bunch of opinions and went from there. I got on medication. There's no reason I shouldn't be healthy and
ready to go for Opening Day."
Martinez joins Red Sox as assistant
The Boston Red Sox on Thursday announced that former ace Pedro Martinez is returning to the
organization as a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington.
Martinez joins former battery-mate Jason Varitek in that capacity with the team and will help in
the development of the team's pitching prospects.
"We are very excited to have Pedro onboard with us and back in the Red Sox organization,"
Cherington said in a news release. "He was one of the game's most dominant pitchers and without
a doubt a beloved figure in Red Sox history. Similar to former teammate Jason Varitek, who joined
the baseball operations staff in September, Pedro will be involved in several areas, including the
evaluation, mentorship, and instruction of young players in spring training and throughout the season."
John Henry: Red Sox not for sale
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Boston Red Sox principal owner John W. Henry, departing from custom,
met with the media here Monday unaccompanied by fellow owners Tom Werner and Larry
Lucchino, and reiterated in strong terms that he has no interest in selling the club.
The increasing values of franchises -- the Dodgers sold last year for $2.1 billion -- is not an
incentive to sell, he said.
"Tom and I have made a lot of money," Henry said Monday morning, sitting on a picnic bench
outside the Red Sox training facility. "That [franchise values] doesn't drive us.
"What drives us is the experience. We're determined to be successful. That hasn't changed.
We don't think in terms of [franchise value]. We think about it in terms of our day-to-day lives.
"As long as we can do it, the three of us are committed to being here."
In his recently released book, former Red Sox manager Terry Francona said that ownership was
preoccupied with sagging TV ratings and hired marketing consultants, who urged the team to
place a greater emphasis on "good-looking stars" and "sex symbols." Henry ridiculed that notion
"People can say we're brand-oriented, revenue-oriented," Henry said. "The fact is, we're
wins-losses oriented, and have been from Day 1.
"I have to laugh. ... It's ludicrous to say we signed any player since we've been here for PR
Among the cuts: A 12-ounce cup of beer drops from $7.50-$8.50 to $5.00;
Fenway franks are buy one, get one free; hot chocolate is nearly half price
($2, compared with $4.25 last season) and kids will eat for free (hot dog,
snack and juice carton)
sawx unload on the Jays 13-zip,