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Ex-general in AFP retirement fund scam gets 123 years - Inquirer.net

Ex-general in AFP retirement fund scam gets 123 years - Inquirer.net.....»»

Category: newsSource: googlenews googlenewsApr 16th, 2018

Ramiscal gets another 123 years over AFP retirement fund land scam

    The Sandiganbayan has again convicted retired brigadier general Jose Ramiscal Jr. for anomalies hounding the Armed Forces of the Philippines Retirement and Separation Benefit System's land purchases in the late 1990s. The court's Seventh Division has handed down prison terms of 123 to 216 years on Ramiscal, former president of the now-defunct military retirement fund, and lawyer Nilo Flaviano for 12 counts each of graft and falsification. The case arose from the misdeclaration of the selling price of 12 lots in General Santos City in 1997, cheating the government of P3.506 million in capital gains and documentary stamp taxes. Although RSBS bought the 999-...Keep on reading: Ramiscal gets another 123 years over AFP retirement fund land scam.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 16th, 2018

Fertilizer fund scam whistleblower loses witness protection

    Whistleblower Jose Barredo Jr., the self-confessed "runner" in the P728-million fertilizer fund scam in 2004, has lost his witness protection from the government, the Inquirer has learned.   Unlike other high-profile state witnesses who are accompanied by armed escorts whenever they attend hearings at the Sandiganbayan, Barredo only had Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office Director Sandra Cam for company on Tuesday.   Barredo took the stand as a state witness in the P999,000 fertilizer fund scam case against Mayor Mariano Malones of Maasin, Iloilo, before the antigraft court's Seventh Division.   Although he is still immune from corru...Keep on reading: Fertilizer fund scam whistleblower loses witness protection.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 19th, 2018

WHAT WENT BEFORE: The AFP-RSBS fund scam

In 1999, the Senate blue ribbon committee recommended to government prosecutors to file charges against Brig. Gen. Jose Ramiscal Jr., former president of the Armed Forces of the Philippines-Retirement and Separation Benefits System (AFP-RSBS), for granting special favors to private investors, as a "willing patsy" for Gen. Lisandro Abadia, former AFP chief of staff, to enable them to use RSBS funds. The AFP-RSBS was established in 1976 as a pension fund for soldiers. It was funded from soldiers' contributions. RSBS invested heavily in real estate, making itself vulnerable to the 1997 financial crisis. In 1998, RSBS losses called the attention of the Senate blue ribbon committee, ...Keep on reading: WHAT WENT BEFORE: The AFP-RSBS fund scam.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsApr 17th, 2018

Former AFP retirement fund head, lawyer convicted of graft, falsification

By Minde Nyl R. Dela Cruz THE Sandiganbayan has found a former retirement fund official and a lawyer guilty of graft and falsification over the 1997 sale of 12 lot parcels in General Santos City, Cotabato. In a 55-page decision promulgated last Friday, April 13, the graft court’s 7th Division sentenced retired brigadier-general Jose S. […] The post Former AFP retirement fund head, lawyer convicted of graft, falsification appeared first on BusinessWorld......»»

Category: newsSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsApr 15th, 2018

House panel begins probe on dubious right of way claims in GenSan

A House of Representatives panel kicked off on Tuesday its investigation on the alleged P8.7-billion road right of way (RROW) scam in General Santos City.   The House committee on good government and accountability started to tackle House Resolution No. 1551 filed by South Cotabato Rep. Pedro Acharon Jr. to investigate the alleged payments by the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) of RROW claimants in General Santos City using "spurious" or fabricated land titles during the time of former President Benigno S. Aquino III.   "The magnitude of the public fund allegedly misused and the extent of the government offices and agencies that might be involved, no ...Keep on reading: House panel begins probe on dubious right of way claims in GenSan.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 30th, 2018

Master, matchmaker, mentor, caring friend

  We first met Jos Reyes Moreno Jr.---Pitoy to all---in 1988, in his home office. His loyal assistant, Mary Jane Marcelo, served Moreno's signature buko salad, a recipe that remains tightly guarded even after his death. When the plates and glasses were cleared, he entered and started the interview.   Thirty years ago, there was a big hoopla over his fashion show at Manila Hotel. It was a fund-raising event for a cause close to his heart, the Philippine General Hospital children's ward.   Back then, Moreno's name was synonymous with resplendent beadwork, embroidery and handpainting, and with the high and mighty. He had dressed up Philippine presidents fro...Keep on reading: Master, matchmaker, mentor, caring friend.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsJan 20th, 2018

Popovich s odd alliance with red state fans

By Shaun Powell, NBA.com SAN ANTONIO -- About 400 people gathered at the Oak Hills Country Club in June 2016 and paid $500 to $250,000 to sip iced tea and nibble hors d’oeuvres next to a golf course designed by noted architect AW Tillinghast, who built many. One is owned by the man who was feted at this political fundraiser, Donald J. Trump. The presidential campaign was in full blast and saltier than the crackers on the cheese plate being passed around. Fresh off the plane, Trump thanked the Republicans for the big ‘ole Texas welcome, witnesses say, before launching a blistering attack on the usual targets: Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, illegal immigration. Then, near the end of his 30-minute lunchtime appearance, in an effort to connect with the locals, he pivoted and mentioned perhaps the most famous man in town: Gregg Popovich. Witnesses say Trump called Popovich “a great coach” and said “he does a good job” and then there was some fidgeting in the room when the soon-to-be polarizing leader of the free world said this: “I don’t know if the coach is on my side.” Confirmation came emphatically, right after Trump won a divisive election that November. The coach of the Spurs lit into the President over the next several months with a handful of rants that had the stealth of Kawhi Leonard ambushing a timid ball-handler. In no particular order, here were Pop’s Greatest Hits, all issued through the media and without prompting or provocation: “The disgusting tenure and tone and all the comments … have been xenophobic, homophobic, racist, misogynistic. I live in a country where half the people ignored that to elect someone.” And: “He is in charge of our country. That’s disgusting.” And: “The man in the Oval Office is a soulless coward who thinks he can only become large by belittling others.” And: “We have a pathological liar in the White House ... You can’t believe anything that comes out of his mouth.” Popovich didn’t stop there with a President whose sensitivity and intelligence he questioned and accused of being guilty of “gratuitous fear-mongering.” When he took Trump to task for criticizing NFL players who knelt during the National Anthem and defended their rights to do so, Popovich also suspected a measure of the public outrage was racially motivated. “Our country is an embarrassment to the world,” he said. A 68-year-old wealthy white man, therefore, became a sports voice with weight in the political and social justice arena, where the NBA league office has greenlighted players and coaches to speak up. Popovich has done so with clarity and insight to gain national applause in certain corners. He wasn’t the first or the last in sports to verbally spank the president or tackle right-leaning sensitivities, yet he’s certainly the most unique in one respect. As a graduate of the Air Force Academy who works in a military town, and a five-time NBA champion coach who might symbolize the city more than The Alamo, Popovich has long been elevated to icon status, perhaps permanently so, in San Antonio, where folks are mad about the Spurs. Still, this is mostly conservative Texas, one of the most Republican of states based on the state legislature and the congressional delegation, a state that voted Republican in 10 straight presidential elections and saw 52.6 percent of voters punch for Trump. While voters in San Antonio-proper lean liberal, the surrounding areas swing solidly the opposite. Julianna Holt, the Spurs CEO and Popovich’s boss since March after assuming the position held for 20 years by her husband Peter, supported various Republican presidential candidates before eventually donating $5,400 to Trump’s campaign and $250,000 to the Trump Victory Fund, according to Federal Election Commission records. Popovich is therefore a blue blood in a red state and the contrast makes for strange if not uncomfortable alliance between a beloved coach and a group of conflicted Spurs worshippers. His views have in fact shattered the sacrilege by generating hostility from a segment of the basketball flock, something no coach with his credentials would ever feel. The constant winning and acts of charity do not insulate him from those who would prefer Popovich stuff a sweat sock in his bullhorn. Party lines not Popovich's focus “While we all believe Gregg Popovich has the right to his opinions, where was Popovich when Hillary called half of us a 'basket of deplorables?’Many were Spurs fans who are now tired of being insulted ... many of us will never pay to see a Spurs game again.” -- Donna Howington  “The money I will save this year not attending Spurs games should buy me a nice set of golf clubs. Thanks Pop!” -- Jake Ingorgia  “I will never watch them again until Popovich is gone. He is just like all the other leftist celebrities.” -- Lee Harbach, Bulverde They arrive on cue, most from the dusty towns that orbit around San Antonio, some from the city itself. Popovich has unloaded three times this year on Trump, once after the election, once at the start of training camp and most recently by cold-calling Dave Zirin, a friend and liberal writer from The Nation, a progressive magazine. And each time, the letters land in the office of Ricardo Pimentel, the editor who coordinates the comments section of the Express-News, San Antonio’s newspaper of record. “It’s a cycle,” says Pimental, with a sigh. “He speaks out. People who disagree with him send us letters to the editor, then people who object to their disagreement write us letters to the editor defending Pop. Then they respond to one another.” The initial reaction, he said, is always stacked against Popovich and many identify themselves as Spurs fans ripping up their tickets or promising to never attend or watch games again. Even if those who made threats actually carried them out, the change in the Spurs’ home attendance is a blip, from 99.2 percent capacity last season to 98.6 so far this season. Popovich, of course, has been big for business since his first full season as coach in 1997-98. Besides the titles, the Spurs have reached the playoffs every season and won 50 games every season (except for the lockout-shortened 50-game 1998-99 campaign, when they won 37). In short, Popovich's Spurs have a track record beyond reproach in the NBA. If the 2017-18 Spurs stay on pace, it’ll be 20 straight winning seasons for Popovich, one more than Phil Jackson for the all-time NBA record. He hasn’t been this politically vocal until lately, due to Trump, yet was always politically aware, say those who know him. Well-versed through his readings and observations, Popovich welcomes discussion with acquaintences about classism, leadership, government and preferably over a bottle of wine. His two-decades exposure to young black men from humble beginnings raised his awareness and sensitivities about race and bias. Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr once played for the Spurs and lately has echoed many of the same thoughts as Popovich. But Kerr coaches in the Bay Area, where folks nod their heads in agreement. Kerr said he can only imagine the flak Popovich catches in Texas. “Here’s this iconic coach who stands for everything that’s right and for honor and integrity, he served in the military, you see him stand at attention for the American flag — man, Pop loves his country,” Kerr said. “And in the middle of Texas for him to be questioning the Republican President, some of the people down there are probably confused. Like, 'I don’t get it, we love this guy but he’s on the other side from us.' “What I love about Pop is that it’s not about party, not about politics. It’s about integrity and character and that’s what people need to pay attention to. It’s not about some policy, not about how much we pay in taxes. If we can just get back to the point where character matters, then we’ll be in better shape. The problem is, it’s clear character has gone down the tubes in many leadership positions in our country. That’s what Pop is calling out.” True enough, Popovich never publicly attached himself to a political party; to suggest he is against Republicans might be as misleading as believing Colin Kaepernick is against the military. When he played for Popovich, Kerr couldn’t recall a time when the coach was this annoyed by the country’s leadership. “The country was in a better place in terms of a relatively peaceful time back then,” Kerr said. “Yes, 9-11 happened and the whole world changed. But we didn’t have quite the same partisan nature, not only in politics but the national conversation. And so people could just admire Pop for who he was and people might not have been aware of his political leanings because they didn’t ask. When we won and went to the White House, Pop and the team went when Bush was in office. We went in ’99 when President Clinton was there. Republican, Democrat, didn’t matter. The times are so different now.” Kerr laughed quickly when asked about the semi-serious groundswell of social media support for a Kerr-Popovich ticket in 2020. Kerr said he hopes to be on his fifth NBA title as a coach then, but turned semi-serious about Popovich. “Our country needs somebody like Pop who can actually lead and unite from a position of authority and credibility,” Kerr said. “This guy served in the military, grew up in a melting pot, understands leadership. More than anything, he’ll cut through all the [expletive].” Since going nuclear on Trump, Popovich declined invites from the national political shows (and wouldn’t comment for this story). That proves what friends have maintained all along: Popovich doesn’t want to be anyone’s political hero or pundit. He’d rather speak when the moment calls for it, then be left alone. That last part is tricky, though. Empathy often marks Popovich's way “Can you imagine being Republican on the Spurs? Would you feel welcome? He’s like Berkeley -- for free speech unless you disagree with him. Shut up and coach, Gregg.” -- Shannon Deason  “When it comes to coaching basketball or drinking wine, Popovich has experience. When it comes to our country, his opinion is no better than anyone else’s." -- Harold Siemens, Seguin  “Open letter to the NBA referee who ejected Pop from the Warriors-Spurs game: Don’t feel bad about what Gregg Popovich called you. He called the POTUS worse and got away with it.” -- Larry Peabody Once the wheels touched down, the pilot jokingly announced over the loudspeaker: “Welcome to Gregg Popovich International Airport,” and one particular passenger noticed that nobody on the plane thought it was strange. Sean Elliott always knew how deeply rooted Popovich is with San Antonio. Aside from the famous Spanish missions and the River Walk, the city is known for the only professional sports team in town. And while George Gervin, David Robinson and Tim Duncan have come and gone, the one lingering reminder is a sometimes gruff and scruffy coach, maybe the NBA’s best ever. “He’s one of the pillars of the community,” said Elliott, twice an All-Star with the Spurs. “He’s looked at with great admiration. He is as respected as anyone who has ever lived in or been part of the city. It’s not just because he’s a basketball coach. Pop has been a big part of the community, huge contributor to charitable functions, good leader.” Elliott was a Spurs rookie in 1989 when their relationship began and he saw the start of Popovich’s reach in the region. Popovich then was an assistant coach under Larry Brown and just planting his feet in the NBA. That summer, Elliott and Popovich piled into a van with the team's "Coyote" mascot and conducted basketball clinics in San Marcos, Corpus Christi, Laredo and similar places. They were signing autographs in malls and running kids through drills in 100 degree heat, never hearing a complaint from the coach. Elliott said folks in those small conservative towns loved him. “If you sit and hear him talk about something, you tend to agree with him,” Elliott said. “He’ll put it in a logical way and he’s very thoughtful, well read and super intelligent, maybe the most intelligent person I’ve ever known.” The owner of the Spurs then was Red McCombs, a homespun Texan who made his fortune in car dealerships and media companies. McCombs didn’t give Popovich the coaching job after firing Brown, telling Popovich “you’ve got a chance to be a great coach” if he got more experience, which he did, going to the Warriors to work for Don Nelson. Popovich returned to San Antonio two years later as general manager, then became coach and the rest is history. Now 90, McCombs said: “Popovich has become the distinguished part of the franchise. He wears it well. Can’t say enough about what kind of man he is and what he’s meant to San Antonio. God has blessed us with Gregg Popovich.” McCombs loves to tell how Popovich, by chance, learned that a local family needed a car. The coach wrote a check, gave it to the father and walked away. McCombs said it was “typical Popovich” who has empathy for those with less. McCombs, curiously, has traditionally been one of the biggest Republican bankrollers in the state, who gave to the Trump campaign and is fully aware of what Popovich thinks of his choice for President. And so one of the most powerful men in Central Texas, who leans politically to the color of his nickname, had a strong reaction to that. “He’s earned the right to give his comments about citizenship or Trump or anything else,” said McCombs, voice rising. “Yes, he made some statements that others might disagree with. But I’ll tell you this: Popovich would be elected to anything he wants to in San Antonio.” Remaining silent never an option “Our country is not an embarrassment to the world. I will tell you what an embarrassment is. It is an American citizen who got a free education from the great Air Force Academy ... and then has the audacity to say that the greatest nation in the world is an embarrassment because the President rightly demands that Americans stand for the anthem. Popovich should be ashamed of himself.” -- Nick DeLouis, Fair Oaks Ranch  “Nowhere on God’s green Earth do they have the right to disrespect our flag and the men and women who died to keep us free. I’m appalled that you stooped so low to join in that disrespect. Shame on you!” -- Fred Martin, Fair Oaks Ranch  “Coach Pop has squashed my love and enthusiasm for the team. A national treasure, he is not. Coach Pop has a voice, but not my voice." -- Jo Ivan A few years ago Popovich was in New York with his daughter to catch a Broadway play when the coach had a last minute change in strategy. He learned that John Carlos was giving a lecture at New York University that night. So Popovich told his daughter to take one of her friends instead; said he was going to see “Dr. Carlos” speak. “When he came in I was surprised and delighted,” Carlos said recently. “Quite naturally, everyone knew who he was but he just wanted to sit and listen.” A year later, in 2015, Popovich flew Carlos to San Antonio to address the team and Carlos admitted to being star struck around Tim Duncan and others. Yet Carlos was most curious about Popovich and why the coach took a strong interest in an Olympic sprinter who raised a fist on the victory stand in 1968, which is frozen as an iconic civil rights moment. “Being with the Spurs gave me an opportunity to check his character out,” Carlos said. “I knew he was a whiz at putting players together to bring out their best ability. But through my conversations with him it became apparent that he was a social activist himself at one point in his life. He was teaching his players about activism and to be concerned about their fellow man and what was going on around their lives, not just basketball. “I was impressed. He just wanted them to know they had a larger role than just playing basketball in the society in which they live.” Carlos, therefore, was not surprised to see Popovich defend the rights of kneeling black football players who came under attack from Trump. On the first day of training camp in September, Popovich said: “Obviously race is the elephant in the room and we all understand that. Unless it is talked about constantly it is not going to get better.” What followed was another swirl of exchanges between Popovich critics and supporters in San Antonio, and Popovich acknowledged receiving mail from both sides. The anti-Pop mail, though, was jarring to Carlos, given the coach’s work in town. “When people write and lambast him for taking leaders to task for what they’re doing to society, that’s like water rolling off a duck’s back, man,” Carlos said. “When they write negative things about him, it encourages him to keep doing what he’s doing. Those people are the problem. Go ahead and throw stones and it just motivates him to do his job. “Look, I’m a black man who spoke out. Imagine what they think of him as a white man who speaks just as strong, to try and get people to see things in a better light? They throw stones at him even more, like, 'Hey you’re white, you have a great life. Keep your mouth shut.’ Well, God points people in certain directions. We know who we are. We do what we do.” And what Popovich does is enlist the help of giants in the social justice world and bring them into his world. He did that with Cornel West, the Harvard professor and civil rights activist, last fall. Popovich invited West to San Antonio to speak at an East Side community center with a few hundred mostly black and Latino students and their parents. Done without TV cameras or media invitation, the discussion was about the importance of education, the imperfect world, self respect and how to help communities. This was an audience that, presumably and unanimously, connected with a white man who didn’t live among them, but was with them. They were the people Popovich had in mind when he attacked present leadership. This was not the audience that writes to the Spurs and the Express-News asking him to take a vow of silence, though he is aware of them, too. “Some responses make you wonder what country you live in,” Popovich said, “and other responses make you very hopeful … overall, it renews my feeling that something must be done because there is enough people willing to listen.” Veteran NBA writer Shaun Powell has worked for newspapers and other publications for more than 25 years. You can e-mail him here or follow him on Twitter. The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 5th, 2018

The 17 best PBA photos of 2017

Sure, the PBA has seen some trying times this year but to say  that the league is dying would be complete exaggeration. The games were still good. the stories were still compelling, and the stars were still shining bright. Was it a perfect season? Not a chance. But the PBA is still doing relative well. Well enough that everyone was happy. For the most part. And to celebrate a year that has come and gone, here are some of the best photos captured by ABS-CBN Sports for 2017, in no particular order of course but all of them are great. Happy New Year and here's to another great year for the PBA and basketball in general. Let's do this.   James Yap playing outside the Purefoods franchise? Still weird. James Yap and PJ Simon playing against each other? Weirder.   Allein Maliksi is without a doubt the most unapologetic scorer in the PBA. He had a run in the Philippine Cup where he was setting new career highs for every game and Star was destroying opponents by 25 points. He's with Blackwater now though.   2017 was not a good year for Alaska. Still, it's nice to see Calvin Abueva still Beastin' out there. Never change, Calvin.   Now that they're both healthy at the same time, here's to seeing more head-to-head games between this two. The PBA and Philippine basketball in general needs more of June Mar Fajardo vs. Greg Slaughter.   Terrence Romeo: scoring champion, fashion icon, king of swag both on and off the court. My goodness, bro.   You think Justin Brownlee is clutch? Why don't you ask the barangay. Pretty sure they will say hell yes Justin Brownlee is clutch.   This photo pretty much sums up The Rematch for coacn Norman Black and the Meralco Bolts. We need to see a Ginebra-Meralco part 3 in the Governors' Cup for 2018. Please.   The Fast and the Furious forever. There are no words for this. Happy retirement, Mr. Helterbrand.   If everything goes according to plan, we can call this the smiles that launched a Grand Slam. The PBA better be ready for the super, superteam that is the San Miguel Beermen with Christian Standhardinger.   The Gin Kings might as well own the Philippine Arena. Ginebra is setting attendance records left and right at the massive INC facility. More importantly, they keep on winning there. The barangay is 5-1 in Bulacan including one Game 7 win for another championship.   James Yap used to be the face of the Purefoods franchise and Marc Pingris was the team's heart and soul. Now, Ping is all of that and then some.   Taken just moments before the Beermen completed a Philippine Cup hat trick to capture the Perpetual trophy. This San Miguel team is a special group.   Chito Narvasa's highly-controversial term as PBA Commissioner ended this year. However, perhaps his most controversial move was approving the much-maligned Kia-San Miguel trade for the no. 1 pick of the 2017 Draft. This was from the press conference that triggered the PBA Board impasse. Overall just not a good look. It was impactful, but not good.   He might be slowing down a little bit but Jayson Castro is still a force to be reckoned with. The Blur might just get to a new gear in 2018. Watch out.   He finally beat his inner demons and Mac Cardona found his way back in the PBA this year. Welcome back, Captain Hook.   Kiefer Ravena was ready for the PBA two years ago. Two games into his first pro season, the Phenom is already proving his worth. This was his first PBA dunk. There should be more to come.   Nash Racela is one brave soul. He spent the entire season trying to beat San Miguel teams in order to win a title for TNT. The KaTropa didn't end up winning anything but coach Nash sure got into the skin of the SMC teams. Here he is trying to plead for a foul because officials are supposedly favoring Ginebra. While that's not proven, if 2017 was any indication, 2018 should be even more fun for coach Nash and the San Miguel teams.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 31st, 2017

PNP spox: No announcement yet on next chief PNP but Apolinario is top choice

    The spokesperson of the Philippine National Police (PNP) clarified on Wednesday that no official announcement has been made by President Rodrigo Duterte on the replacement of PNP chief Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa in time for his retirement in 2018. "If there would be an announcement, the official announcement would come from Malacaang," PNP spokesperson Chief Supt. Dionardo Carlos said in a press briefing. Carlos' statement came after news reports disclosed the name of General Ramon Apolinario as Dela Rosa's successor when he retired on Jan. 21, 2018---the date when the current PNP chief would turn 56 years old, the mandatory age of retirement for t...Keep on reading: PNP spox: No announcement yet on next chief PNP but Apolinario is top choice.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsDec 6th, 2017

DPWH orders return of P4.8-B RROW fund for Region 12

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 5 December) — The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) has pulled out around P4.8 billion in road right-of-way (RROW) funds for Region 12 in the wake of the alleged multibillion scam involving fake claims in this city and the neighboring areas. Deputy House Speaker and South Cotabato second […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  mindanewsRelated NewsDec 5th, 2017

Just-retired Beltran interviews to become Yankees manager

By Ronald Blum, Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — Exactly four weeks after winning his first World Series title on his final day as a major league player, Carlos Beltran walked into Yankee Stadium for his interview to become New York's manager. "I never thought that this moment was going to come this soon after retirement," he said Wednesday. "I thought that I was going to be able to spend a little time with the family, but the fact that I got the call to be interviewed, this is something that you cannot turn away from it, because these type of opportunities, especially the one with the Yankees, they don't come very often." The 40-year-old was a nine-time All-Star who hit 435 home runs over 20 big league seasons and spent half his career in New York — including 2 1/2 years with the Yankees from 2014-16. Having interviewed five candidates earlier this month to replace Joe Girardi, New York general manager Brian Cashman called Beltran on Sunday. "At the beginning it's a little bit overwhelming. There's a lot of information that you have to digest," Beltran said. "Being a player and being able to play this game for such a long time, I have seen a lot, and I have seen the importance of what players need in the clubhouse, especially this clubhouse, where you see a lot of younger guys." Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner has said he is wary, but not opposed, to candidates with no previous managing or coaching experience. Beltran thinks becoming a designated hitter in the waning stage of his career was preparation for running a dugout. He would hire a strong bench coach in the dugout to advise him. "I got to see the game from a different view," he said. "I got to be actually like a players' coach in the clubhouse, being able to be active with the younger guys, being able to help them." Houston players credited Beltran with a rousing postgame speech following the Game 5 loss to the Yankees in the AL Championship Series, which put New York ahead 3-2 in the best-of-seven matchup. The Astros returned home, swept the next two games and beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in a seven-game World Series for the first title in the history of the franchise, which started play in 1962. "He's grown so much over the years, just in his expression and his ability to communicate, his willingness to communicate," Astros manager A.J. Hinch said last month. "He knows a lot about the game. I joke with him, he didn't teach me anything when we played together. He's teaching me more things now I'm managing him." Yankees bench coach Rob Thomson, former Cleveland and Seattle manager Eric Wedge, San Francisco bench coach Hensley Meulens, former big league third baseman Aaron Boone and Dodgers third base coach Chris Woodward previously interviewed. Beltran prepared for his interview by asking Omar Minaya, the general manager who signed him for the New York Mets, what questions he should expect. Beltran cited Terry Collins as a manager he admired — Collins started with the Mets during Beltran's final season in Queens. Like all manager candidates these days, Beltran venerated analytics. "I have seen the Yankees really invest a lot of money in analytics and try to provide the players information that they could use to try to increase their careers," he said. "When I look at my career, I look at my 20 years that I played in the big leagues, I personally feel that out of those 20 years, I played naked in a lot of them because I didn't have all this information." While Beltran prides his ability to connect with players — a trait Cashman is seeking — he understands his interactions with them as manager would change. "Being able to have a good relationship with the guys and being able to have truthful conversations at the same time being the manager is a different responsibility," he said, "so I think that will be the way where I will be focused the most.".....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 30th, 2017

Ex-DPWH chief vows to unmask Aguirre’s witness in scam

Former Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson on Tuesday said he was ready to expose the supposed whistleblower who accused him, former Budget Secretary Florencio Abad, and Eldon Cruz, brother-in-law of former President Benigno Aquino III, of involvement in a right-of-way scam in General Santos City. Singson told the Inquirer in a text message that the letter allegedly sent to him by Cruz, asking for an endorsement to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM), was "fake." "The accusation is based on a letter claimed to be sent by Eldon to (Secretary) DPWH (Department of Public Works and Highways). All fake and I have received quite a few similar letters using big names. The acc...Keep on reading: Ex-DPWH chief vows to unmask Aguirre’s witness in scam.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsNov 29th, 2017

Marlins have Stanton on the market as GM meetings start

By Ronald Blum, Associated Press ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — For sale: 28-year-old chiseled slugger who led the major leagues with 59 home runs, the most in 16 years. Price: $295 million over a decade. Complication: Giancarlo Stanton only goes where he wants to, since the star right fielder has a full no-trade provision. Now under a new ownership group that put former New York Yankees star Derek Jeter in charge of baseball and business operations, the Miami Marlins have concluded their payroll-paring regime is willing to explore trades of Stanton and other high-priced players. "I think over the next few days I'll get a feel for what the marketplace is for our players," Marlins president of baseball operations Mike Hill said Monday, the opening day of the annual general managers' meetings. Miami had a $116 million payroll on Aug. 31, up from $81 million at the end of last year. Bruce Sherman's group bought the team on Oct. 2 from Jeffrey Loria and is exploring trades for players who contributed to the team's eighth straight losing season. The Marlins have not made the playoffs since winning the 2003 World Series, the second-longest postseason drought behind Seattle. Stanton's salary jumps from $14.5 million this year to $25 million next season. It peaks at $32 million annually from 2023-25. When he spoke Oct. 25 at the World Series while receiving an award, Stanton said he didn't have "stamped-out ideas" whether he would want to stay in Miami during a rebuild. The Marlins seem to know which teams he would accept a trade to. "I do have a sense, and we'll keep that internal, and at the appropriate time we'll discuss whatever we need to discuss," Hill said. "We work internally. We do what we need to do, and then if we need to present him with something, we'll do so at the appropriate time." Among other costly Marlins next year are third baseman Martin Prado ($14 million), right-hander Edinson Volquez ($13 million), center fielder Christian Yelich ($7 million, with $37.5 million more guaranteed over the following three years) and second baseman Dee Gordon ($10.5 million, with $27.5 million guaranteed over the following two seasons). Given a penurious approach, the Marlins may find trades make sense. "It's tough to be competitive if you're overly concentrated in two or three players," New York Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. "I think we experienced some of that last year." High-revenue teams would be the most likely matches. The New York Yankees do not appear to be a probable destination. Right fielder Aaron Judge won the AL Rookie of the Year award unanimously after hitting 52 homers, center fielder Aaron Hicks played well when he wasn't hurt, and Clint Frazier is competing for playing time among a group that includes veterans Brett Gardner and Jacoby Ellsbury. "We have a lot of good players signed, so we're not in a situation where we have to be pressured into moving fast on anything," general manager Brian Cashman said. "It gives us a little bit of a chance to be patient and engage the market and see if there's any value to be had via trade or free agencies for us because we have a lot pieces currently in place and more pieces coming." New York does figure to be interested in 23-year-old Japanese right-hander and outfielder Shohei Otani, a two-way player who wants to sign with a major league team. But the Major League Baseball Players Association does not seem close to an agreement on a new posting deal with MLB management and Nippon Professional Baseball. That could push off Otani negotiations for weeks or months. Teams are having trade discussions and agents also are the hotel, pitching their clients to teams. Cashman is not meeting with manager candidates during the GM session. Yankees bench coach Rob Thomson and former Cleveland and Seattle manager Eric Wedge were interviewed last week, and Cashman would not deny reports that San Francisco bench coach Hensley Meulens will be interviewed. Former Yankees outfielder Carlos Beltran, who announced his retirement Monday after 20 big league seasons, could be a contender. "He's played the game a long time. He knows the game inside-out. He's obviously got respect of his peers and (is) bilingual," Cashman said. "He brings a lot to the table in terms of someone that's played the game the right way and had a great career and goes out with a world championship ring and is highly respected I would say across all environments of our industry.".....»»

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