Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Help
Eight Ball
2005-09-16 04:55
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

"That's why the Yankees are the Yankees," Rays DH Jonny Gomes said. "The buffoonery they had earlier, that was something else. But they're the Yankees and they're here now. They mean business. And they're not taking no for an answer." (N.Y. Daily News)

Welp, Cliff was right: neither pitcher was pretty last night. But that didn't stop the Yankees from winning their fourth straight game. Down 5-1, the Bombers scored seven runs in the top of the sixth inning, giving Aaron Small all he would need in order to up his record to an improbable 8-0. The final score: Yanks 9, Rays 5. According to the YES broadcast, it was the tenth time this season that the Yanks have come back from a deficit of four or more runs, a team record. Robinson Cano hit a huge grand slam and Alex Rodriguez made like David Ortiz with a tie-breaking two-run blast which gave the Yanks the lead for good. New York inched to within a half-a-game of the idle Cleveland Indians and a game-and-a-half to the Boston Red Sox who lost to Oakland last night at Fenway Park.

Aaron Small had two bad innings. In the second, he allowed two doubles and hit a man as the Rays jumped to a 2-0 lead; in the fifth, he gave up two singles and a long home run (which hit the catwalk) to Johnny Gomes (hey, the dude can hit the high fastball, 'specially when it ain't that fast). He also retired the side in order three times. The most important work for Small came after his offense reclaimed the lead in the top of the sixth. He retired the next five men, throwing strikes, and keeping the aggresive Rays hitters off-balance with his breaking pitches, throwing them slower rather than harder.

When Julio Lugo punch a two-out triple in the gap, Small's night was over. Alan Embree came in and struck Carl Crawford out on sliders. Tom Gordon and Mariano Rivera worked the last two innings and neither was crisp. Gordon got two outs in the eighth, but also put two men on base. Mariano replaced him and walked the pinch-hitter Eduardo Perez on five pitches, before falling behind Toby Hall 2-0. But Rivera regrouped and got a ground ball out to escape unscathed. The Yanks added two insurance runs in the top of the ninth (and hey, Cano and Rodriguez tripled) for some breathing room, and Rivera retired the side in order to end the game.

Bubba Crosby--my girlfriend's new favorite Yankee (oh, how she adores the underdog)--had a career-high three hits, Gary Sheffield had three himself, but it was Cano and Rodriguez who were the offensive stars (with an assist from Hideki Matsui). Again, the big inning was the top of the sixth when Matsui led off with a bloop double down the left field line off of Seth McClung. Bernie Williams followed with a walk before Jorge Posada singled sharply through the left side. McClung throws hard but he was tiring and Cano launched a 1-0 fastball deep into the right field stands. He managed to strike Crosby out but then walked Jeter and had to deal with Rodriguez, who he had plunked in the back in the previous inning. McClung was on the ropes and Rodriguez drilled a low fastball to deep center for his 42nd homer of the year. Some personal payback for him, and a measure of payback for the entire team in their final game against Tampa Bay.

The Yanks did exactly what they needed to do here. Now, all they have to do is continue win two of three in each of their remaining series and they'll have a fighting chance to play into October. I hate to end on a down note, but I'd be remiss if I didn't link to Bill Madden's article today about how Boss George and his crew have effectively frozen Stick Michael out of the picture. This is depressing and does not bode well as far as the future is concerned, but we can't worry about that right now. With just under three weeks left in the regular season, it's all about the team on the field, playing good ball, winning ball games, and hopefully making the playoffs.

Comments (61)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-09-16 06:06:09
1.   Dimelo
I'm sure the Torre haters will say that Bellhorn should have been batting in Cano's spot.

Go Yanks...and thanks for showing up.

2005-09-16 06:16:59
2.   bp1
While the names on the lineup card and in th e bullpen might be different, this is the sort of team I envisioned in Spring Training. A team that would play clean if not spectacular defense, pitch good enough, and hit the tar out of the ball.

Could all change tonight, of course, seeing as how this has been a total jeckyl/hyde season, but it seems as if the confidence is building.

BP

2005-09-16 06:20:37
3.   Simone
I'm thrilled the Yankees won. I still highly doubt that they make the playoffs, but it is great that they aren't laying down.

Bill Madden's column is a downer, but should make the Torre haters here and elsewhere happy because Emslie and Oppenheimer in charge means that it is just a matter of time before Joe is fired. I love Madden's take on Kerrigan who is supposed to be this guru who will solve all the Yankees' pitching woes, even after he crashed and burned with the younger pitchers in Philly. Seriously though, most of the dreams of all armchair Yankee managers on the Internet appear to be about to come true. The 80s have returned in full force. May the baseball gods see us through the dark, until the light returns.

2005-09-16 06:22:22
4.   atc
According to the papers the last few days, Damon Oppenheimer is being groomed to be the DH. Am I wrong, is this the same guy to whom we attribute the quote "for that kind of money, we could get Womack?"
2005-09-16 06:29:28
5.   Max
I was pretty giddy about yesterday's win and the Sox's loss...but the enthusiasm was tempered (somewhat) by the realization that this is the start of a 20 game stretch without a break...with an unbelievable level of intensity likely to accompany all of the games.

The Sox played their 24th straight game last night, and the papers noted today how wiped out they looked...their bats have definitely cooled off recently.

Nevertheless, that's what these guys get paid to do. Out of curiosity, I looked at the other long stretches of play the Yankees had this season. They had two 16 game stretches, one in late April and the other in early August, and went 8-8 in the first one (when they were still sleepwalking through the beginning of the season) and 9-7 in the second one.

The team had an 18 game stretch in June in which they went 10-8.

The most recent stretch of 17 games at the end of August is the most encouraging: 12-5, a .700 pace. I think we need to be just a little better than that in the last 17 games to make the playoffs.

And confirming what everyone's known for a while: in all those consecutive game stretches where the team broke even (or won only slighly more than they lost), the culprit was a series loss to Tampa. Hopefully, sweeping the bastards this time around portends positive developments the rest of the way.

2005-09-16 06:30:26
6.   Max
And yes, the article about Stick and the clowns in Tampa was a real downer. The contempt that people express here for the managing staff, I have the same level of contempt for the Tampa contingent (especially Emslie).
2005-09-16 06:30:36
7.   Dimelo
Bill Madden's column was great. If it weren't for the team on the field, I would hate the Yankees. I really hate the Tampa regime, the politics, stroking George's ego and the constant infighting between the NY and Tampa offices. There are a lot of similarities to the Godfather, it's like Michael Corleone not getting along with Hyman Roth. It's just different players: Billy Conners, Stick, Oppenheimer (didn't he develop the A-Bomb too? The guy is good, whateva!!!), Cashman, etc. They should make a movie out of this entire circus.
2005-09-16 06:35:35
8.   rbj
Good win coupled with a Schilling loss, and a Mudhens' Governors' Cup win. Great night all around.

I was hoping for a couple more runs in the ninth, just so that Mo could come out of the game. It was a tough call at that point, if you take him out and the rest of the bullpen blows up. . . Now Unit & Chacon need to pitch deep the next couple of days, but also the hitters need to kick the opposing pitchers when they're down. Double digit scoring vs. the Blue Jays, and Mo & Flash should stay away from the park tonight & tomorrow. No temptation.

2005-09-16 06:58:35
9.   Max
Simone, Kerrigan wore out his welcome in Boston pretty quickly. He didn't get tarred and feathered on the way out, only because Dan Duquette and Jurassic Everett were even more loathed and held responsible for the Sox collapse in 2002. But he was without a doubt one of the worst interim managers ever.

A weasel that rides the coattails of other weasels is in many ways worse, and if Kerrigan gains even more ground in the new organizational chart, then things look really bleak.

2005-09-16 07:40:24
10.   Murray
Who's Roth and who's Michael Corleone in Yankeeland? Isn't Steinbrenner more like Sonny, whereas Cashman is Tom Hagan?

I don't know whether to be happy that this is the first Yankee team to come from so far behind so many times. Great Yankee teams have some big comebacks in their history (the game that featured Darryl's granny at the Oakland Coliseum, etc.), but the Yankees are most successful when they beat their opponents into submission.

2005-09-16 07:57:34
11.   Stormer Sports
Bubba not good enough!

Torre told the New York Post that Matt Lawton will get the start in right tonight, proving that in Torre's stat notebook world of wonderment, no good deed goes unpunished.

2005-09-16 07:59:22
12.   Stormer Sports
Zimmer right again!

http://www.nypost.com/sports/yankees/28178.htm

2005-09-16 07:59:31
13.   Cliff Corcoran
For what it's worth, earlier this year I heard Cashman throw Stick under the bus on Mike & The Maddog, stating emphatically that the Tony Womack signing was Stick's idea (the subtext being that Cashman had become fully aware how terrible Womack was).

Meanwhile, I'm not sure taking 1 of 3 in the five remaining series will be enough. I think the Yanks need to work a sweep or two in there. I'll take a closer look at this in my pregame post tonight.

2005-09-16 08:00:36
14.   Rags
Bill Madden's column was garbage. Only in New York are sportswriters allowed to dissect the politics off the field when they have nothing to say about what happens between the lines. Every organization has its own peculiar brand of politics and intrigue. Rarely are these communicable to those on the outside. I can't imagine any of Madden's rumoring and speculation being relevant to his audience or the team.

It's just like their constant reference to the payroll disparity. Following the prevailing line of thinking it shouldn't matter who's scouting with 200 million on the field (not adjusted for Brown, Pavano, and Gotham's cost of living). What if we were to start judging journalists on a sliding scale relative to their salaries? Maybe their salaries should be posted on their byline. How much does Madden get? Lupica? It's no doubt more than the poor inksters toiling in KC.

2005-09-16 08:04:35
15.   Stormer Sports
Am I the only one who found the Call Line on this article unnecessary?

http://www.nypost.com/sports/yankees/yankees.htm

2005-09-16 08:04:53
16.   Nick from Washington Heights
"In what can only be viewed as more self-defeating organizational genocide on the part of Yankee owner George Steinbrenner,..."

Perhaps, Madden is exaggerating. Just maybe. Genocide?

Anyway, this article points to a basic fact that is so obvious it begs to be refuted by more nuanced arguments. Here it is: George Steinbrenner is a raging moron, hellbent on self-destruction. He does not follow a line of reasoning; rather he always does the emotional thing and the action that serves his ego the most. If there is any hope in this organization it lies with people like Gene Michael and Cashman. Not because they don't make mistakes, but because they are willing to take on the Boss when he's ready to do a really stupid thing. There is evidence that Cashman, however flawed he is, follows more up-to-date statistical indicators when looking to add talent to this team. George invests in irrational notions of "true Yankeeness" (Womack anyone.) and redemption stories (Steve Howe). If Stick was out of the loop following the ALCS, that explains the horror of this past off-season even more completely. Get ready for the Yanks to sign Damon for an even bigger contract than Beltran's. Because he's won a world series and he's done well against the Yanks of course.

2005-09-16 08:10:11
17.   markp
1.The Torre haters want Bellhorn in against lefties, not righties. Bellhorn has a career OPS of close to 950 vs. lefties.
2. "said one Yankee organization man" "it was learned" "one former Yankee executive said" "From what I'm told" "Said one Cashman associate"
Unnamed sources are occasionally accurate. But not as much as they're wrong, and even moreso when they have an axe to grind like Madden.
2005-09-16 08:17:21
18.   rmd0311
Stormer.,Really, how can Torre be such an idiot, take out a kid that is surely blooming. Hitting descently, for Lawton. (Is it his Veterans are better mentality, even if they SUCK).

Anyway, not to bring up the MVP cause that's not what's important. Does anyone still doubt AROD is the MVP... Came up big last night...

2005-09-16 08:18:22
19.   JeremyM
Lawton is starting? My God. This is why we get ticked at Torre. Bubba's hot and he can play defense. Lawton's colder than cold and can't play defense worth a crap. When you have a hot hand, especially in September, you ride that hot hand. How many games did Shane Spencer sit in September 1998 again?

Lawton is literally the worst defender I've ever seen in the outfield. Enrique Wilson was better than him I think. And he's lost at the plate. I think he seems like a nice guy, and I want him to do well, but I don't think I've seen anybody so obviously freaked to be a Yankee in my life.

2005-09-16 08:19:44
20.   Nick from Washington Heights
Who in the media doesn't describe the organization as Tampa (those close to George (i.e. Sycophants) vs. Cashman, Torre and Stick?

It's true that individual journalists such as Madden have axes to grind but it's pretty clear that at the very least everyone has the basic skeleton of the organization described. From that, the conclusion I draw is that George uses his Tampa people to justify his hunches. I'm guessing from what I know about the highly erratic and emotional Steinbrenner that he makes a lot of "from the gut" calls about players. If Cashman and Stick are indeed leaving who counterbalances that?

2005-09-16 08:21:03
21.   JeremyM
Maybe Bubba's getting the start in center than, now that I think about it? Bernie is probably due for a rest. Yeah, probably not.
2005-09-16 08:22:41
22.   unpopster
Max, I appreciate your take on the long string of consecutive games the Yanks are about to play, but the one major difference between this upcoming series of games and the previous ones you mentioned is that the Yanks have more September call-up bodies to throw in the mix this time.

A couple of blowouts here and there will mean some much needed rest for the vets. In other words, let's pray for some more of those 17-3 games like Game One of this past Rays series.

As for the Sox, their bats have definitely cooled off. But in addition to their stretch of 30 straight games, it's also been caused by a hurt Damon, an exhausted Varitek (who's BA historically slips in September), an underperforming SS, etc.

Guys, mark my words, the Sox offense is deadin the water. Unless Manny wakes up and acrries that team with a monstah 2 weeks, the hobbling of Damon and the fact that no one will pitch to Ortiz anymore will doom that team.

VIVA LA JANKEES!

2005-09-16 08:26:12
23.   Shaun P
When I was growing up in upstate NY, the papers there never carried articles about the politics of the Yankee hierarchy. As a result, I ignore all articles about it. I'm with marp and Rags on this one - sounds like garbage primarily designed to grind an axe - and sell more tabloids.

Meanwhile, anyone besides me like our chances at being a half-game up on the Sox come Monday morning? I expect Boston will win tonight behind Wakefield, but that the A's will win Saturday and Sunday. I think wins against Bush, I (in another matchup with O), and Lily are in the cards.

2005-09-16 08:33:46
24.   Stormer Sports
Nick.

Oh how short our memories are.

Flawed as he may be, he never fails to provide his team with the one thing each owner owes to his or her franchise, a chance to win, plain and simple. To do otherwise is irresponsible and selfish.

Please, it's not 1985.

Fact: George Steinbrenner has delivered 6 World Series Championships to the fans in New York and elsewhere.

Fact: George Steinbrenner has delivers a team which was able to reach the World Series, albeit unsuccessfully on a few occasions.

Fact: George Steinbrenner purchased the New York Yankees for just under 10 Million Dollars on January 3, 1973, making it the wisest sports purchase in World History.
(http://www.answers.com/topic/new-york-yankees

Most importantly, the purchase of the New York Yankees came at a time when the team was loathed and spited in New York City. There were several options the former ownership were contemplating, not the least of which was an almost certain move out of town. Yes, the Yankees were on their way out, do your research.

George Steinbrenner, for all his foibles and flaws,(as Reggie says: "He's a great man and I will always respect what he has done for me, but if you're waiting for him to hug you like your daddy, don't hold your breath."), odd psychological quirks, which many attribute to his father's obsessive and domineering personality, e.g., making him wear, oddly enough, a sport coat as a young boy, in public, and to school, as well as in other "strange" and socially casual settings.

But for George Steinbrenner my friends, whatever your feelings may be, this conversation would, not could, be taking place somewhere else in the United States. If the Yankees are a religion, then George Steinbrenner is our Savior, our Jesus Christ.

Without him, the "New York" Yankees would not exist at all, to compete for anything, let alone, a 27th World Series Title.

We owe him more than words can articulate, he's not perfect, no he isn't, but he lifted this team from the ashes, and to me, he will always be the most important owner in sports history, not simply in New York. He has given me, and the State and City of New York, more than we could ever repay.

And my own personal favorite, he removed the names from the uniforms, something I have always felt is an anathema to team sports.

Thank you George, thank you.

2005-09-16 08:36:45
25.   Stormer Sports
Maybe if enough people complain, Cash will call Joe, and force him to sit Lawton. My eyes popped right out of my head when I heard, and then read, that Lawton is starting becuase "he has pretty good numbers against Bush."
2005-09-16 08:44:47
26.   Shaun P
unpopster, you think as I do!

Not defending Torre, but consider this: having Lawton as an asset down the stretch would be useful. He's not an asset right now. To become an asset, he needs playing time. He'll get it tonight against a pitcher he's hit before (.500/.571/1.167 and yes in a small sample size (6ABs)) with a groundball/strikeout pitcher going for us (Unit), minimizing the chance for fielding problems.

Personally, I'd stick with Bubba, but you can always put him in. I can see some logic behind Torre's move. Many of us criticize him for not using his bench more, I think this is a reasonable use of it.

2005-09-16 08:59:24
27.   Stormer Sports
6 Fucking at bats, that is what Torre is basing this on, Jesus, he's not getting hired to teach the scientific method anytime soon.

Shaun, a resonable use of his bench would be to start Bubba and use Lawton if we get Bush into a hard spot or need a pinch hitting matchup later in the game (he can also bunt by the way), not start Kramer out in right, opening up the possibilty of some bone head play that will cost us runs we might not get back.

Maybe Joe will sit Sheffield and Cano and Matsui, in favor of Womack and the boys, they all have horrible numbers against Bush.

I say again: Fuck you Joe!

Joe Torre: "What I like to do is find something that works really well, than stay late in my office with Donnie and Girardi and see if I can figure out some way to screw it up. This is a very good team, so it can be difficult at times, but I'm confident we'll figure something out by gametime." September 15, 2005.

2005-09-16 09:05:28
28.   tommyl
Has anyone mentioned Small for Comeback Player of the Year? I know its a long shot and not as flashy as say Griffey or Giambi, but the guy has gone from a minor league journeyman to 8-0.
2005-09-16 09:10:03
29.   Nick from Washington Heights
Stormer, I seem to remember George being banned for baseball for a couple of years during which time Stick built up a minor league system and a perennial winner with players like Mo, Pettitte, Jetes, and Posada.

The more control Boss has over baseball-decisions the less likely the team is going to win. That's a fact.

By the way, Mo is the Jesus Christ of our collective fandom narrative. Please don't be a heretic. Yours is the apocryphal gospel.

2005-09-16 09:18:08
30.   JohnnyC
mark, Shaun, Stormer...Madden's column is just another iteration of a long-standing animus that many, many Yankees beat writers have toward all things Steinbrenner and it's based on little more than innuendo and guess-work. As Cliff pointed out, who's responsible for what is unknowable in any direct way by outside observers: e.g., Cashman blames Michael for the Womack signing, but Michael is not part of the Tampa camp according to Madden, but Michael is being pushed out by...whom? Tampa?Cashman? George? Bill Madden? It's almost circular unless you KNOW WHAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT. Suffice it to say, Madden probably doesn't know. And the most rabid Steinbrenner-hater, Mike Lupica has had a radically different take on the whole Torre/Steinbrenner/Cashman/Tampa intrigue this season. Lupica has cautioned us not to assume a strict black/white interpretation...after all, it was Torre who gave Womack more than 7% of the team's ABs this season and Cashman who forced Torre to play Cano over Womack. If George or Tampa was forcing Cash's hand, it wouldn't make sense for them to replace a $2 million veteran with an unproven rookie making the minimum. There's enough blame to go around without media types trying to point fingers in convenient directions.
2005-09-16 09:24:17
31.   Shaun P
JohnnyC, I agree 100%. That's why I've always ignored that bs, and don't worry too much about it - who knows what is actually true?
2005-09-16 09:27:15
32.   Shaun P
On a different topic:

Anyone else notice that, despite A-Rod having hit the game-winning home run last night in a game the Yanks HAD to win, against their greatest nemesis this season - no print media outlet used the words I have in bold type?

I guess it just doesn't fit the story.

2005-09-16 09:36:43
33.   Stormer Sports
Nick,

You're missing the forest for the trees.

2005-09-16 09:40:09
34.   Stormer Sports
Shaun,

It's only a game winning home run if it happens in Boston.

I am curious though, I wonder how long it will take the writers to cast Boston as the scurge of sport, if in fact they do go on some sort of a long term run. Any thoughts?

2005-09-16 09:40:31
35.   BxSparksNYC
Fellas, I've followed the Yankees since I was knee high to a grasshopper, reading Madden's column along the way and I've always thought out of all these so called Baseball only columnist, he was the most fair and straightforward. And not just Yankees or Met beat writers but comparing him to say Gammons, obvious Sox cheerleader, and others he plays it fair. His report from what I read was just emphasizing that a major player (Stick) who was a major reason for putting the Yankees back on the map was being move out by Tampa players and in his opinion is a bad move by George. I'm sure many would agree to that. Everyone has there good moves and bad, Cash, Stick and the Boss included but I don't understand how you feel Madden's got an axe to grind. Any examples?
2005-09-16 09:42:26
36.   Stormer Sports
Shaun.

"The more control Boss has over baseball-decisions the less likely the team is going to win. That's a fact."

I don't suppose you have anything other than anecdotal eveidence to back up a pretty bold statemet. Remember we would have Ortiz if George had his way.

2005-09-16 09:44:05
37.   Nick from Washington Heights
Stormer, in fairness to me I made the bold statement. As evidence, I'm the Boss's lover.
2005-09-16 09:44:27
38.   Nick from Washington Heights
i meant in fairness to Shaun.
2005-09-16 09:45:11
39.   Stormer Sports
Nick,

Top or Bottom?

2005-09-16 09:46:46
40.   Nick from Washington Heights
When he consults his Tampa people, he takes the top. That's my axe to grind.
2005-09-16 09:48:56
41.   Nick from Washington Heights
I'll be here all week. Be sure to check out the veal and make sure to tip your waiters real well.
2005-09-16 09:49:48
42.   jedi
Did the rumors start on this guy yet coming to the bronx?

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2163464

2005-09-16 10:28:52
43.   ChuckM
Stormer,

Firing Dick Howser after 103 win season, signing Danny Tartabull to take the back page away from the Mets after signing Bobby Bonilla of all people. Pressing to acquire Kenny Lofton because "we need a leadoff hitter". Or my personal favorite, "I just won you the pennant-I got you Steve Trout"

The list goes on and on, but you get the point...

2005-09-16 10:36:21
44.   rbj
George also brought in Reggie in '77.
2005-09-16 10:52:12
45.   JVarghese81
hey jedi,

http://www.waswatching.com/archives/2005/09/torii_hunter_in.html#comments

2005-09-16 11:05:18
46.   Stormer Sports
ChuckM,

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! Killing me!

I was so not attempting to begin a debate concerning George's bad moves vs. good moves, over-involement in the team, under-involvement in the team. That debate is one open to differing poits of view and could go on ad naseum.

The point I was attempting to make, apparently unclearly was this, AND ONLY THIS:

George saved the team from either contraction or relocation, that is simply not debatable. I was not casting a judgement concerning his competency as owner.

From embarassment to Champ in less that 4 years (1973-1977).

He may have made some bone-head moves, but stepping back and looking at in perspective, I was remarking that but for George, we are not even having this discussion at all.

2005-09-16 11:23:05
47.   ChuckM
Considering the Yanks had signed a 30 year lease to play in a remodeled Yankee stadium 5 months before Steinbrenner bought the team, I don't think a relocation/contraction was all that likely...
2005-09-16 11:32:33
48.   Rich
Re: George

Let's not overlook the fact that the foundation for the four championships in the '90s was laid by Stick and Buck while George was suspended for paying Howie Spira for dirt on Winfield.

With fewer and fewer young stars reaching free agency in their prime, relying George's money to compensate for poor drafting and player development will become more of a fool's errand.

The Yankees have to start relying on their farm system to produce talent, otherwise their major league talent base will continue to erode.

For their obscene payroll advantage, there should be a significantly larger talent disparity between the Yankees and other teams than there currently is.

btw, The idea that anyone who criticizes Torre is a hater is one of the funniest things I have ever heard.

Few managers handle a bullpen worse than Torre.

2005-09-16 11:33:41
49.   Max
unpopster, good points about the September call-ups...though I'm less worried about the position players than I am about the state of our relief pitching.

The Sox are hard to figure out...their lineup on paper is as good as it's been all season, but in 7 of the last 10 games, they've scored 3 runs or less. Guess when you're not beating up on Texas and Detroit and Tampa pitching at home, it's harder to score runs.

Your points are taken regarding Damon's injury, Renteria (Theo's fans are sweating him out bigtime) and Varitek's usual tough September...but I think the Sox will be there until the end. The pitching matchup looks good for them tonight, and they'll probably snap out of their current funk.

stormer, I think George is a hall of fame owner and larger than life figure, but with all due respect, your statement "If the Yankees are a religion, then George Steinbrenner is our Savior, our Jesus Christ" sounds like something a Sox fan would say to mock a Yankee fan.

2005-09-16 12:23:42
50.   KJC
//[Small] has gone from a minor league journeyman to 8-0.//

If not comeback POY, at least the biggest surprise that I think I've ever seen. I keep waiting for him to pitch a crap game (isn't he overdue?) and it just hasn't happened.

//I wonder how long it will take the writers to cast Boston as the scurge of sport, if in fact they do go on some sort of a long term run. Any thoughts?//

The Sox need 20 more rings first.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-09-16 12:28:31
51.   Stormer Sports
I love Small, KJC, but 5 ER last night wasn't exactly a gem. Just "keep us in the game" baby!

Hey ChuckM,

We could have Al Davis, count your blessings.

And don't make me assign you a research project on the late 60's, early 70's Yankees.

2005-09-16 12:37:19
52.   ChuckM
Whenever Steinbrenner stick his nose into the day-to-day operations of his businesses, they go to hell in handbasket (anyone remeber his shipbuilding company?). The Yankess were never in any danger of leaving NY. The Mets were created for the sole purpose of replacing the Giants and the Dodgers evacuations. Why would the Yanks leave a mere 10 years after the creation of the Mets and where would they go? Timeline is right here...

http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/nyy/history/timeline3.jsp

2005-09-16 12:56:51
53.   Paul in Boston
To change the subject ...

From the Baseball Prospectus "Postseason Odds", based on 1 million simulations of the rest of the season:

Yanks: 43% chance (31 for division odds, 12 for wild card).
Red Sox 76%
Angles 45%
A's: 55%
Indians: 82%
White Sox: 97%

Better than a few days ago, but still last out of 6, and you need to be in the top 4 to make it!

But of course that's why the play the games on the field ...

2005-09-16 13:09:52
54.   Stormer Sports
That is going to look quite a bit different next week.
2005-09-16 13:11:28
55.   Shaun P
If we beat Toronto tonight, tomorrow and Sunday - while the Sox lose 2 of 3 to Oakland - I wonder what those odds will be Monday morning?
2005-09-16 13:14:23
56.   Stormer Sports
September 28, 2005, White sox are overtaken by the Indians, Red Sox fall out of wild card race by 2 games, White Sox hold on desperately, but win Wild Card. That is my prediction.
2005-09-16 13:46:06
57.   DarrenF
The George of the Bungle angle is tired and lazy. Howser was fired 25 years ago. That move could be described as an illogical, emotional overreaction. Perhaps firing Yogi in 1985 after a 6-10 start ... though that team ended up winning a lot of games without Yogi.

Since Howser was fired 25 years ago, Yankee brass have made some wise decisions and some unwise decisions. Everybody does.

Shouldn't have traded Ted Lilly, definitely shouldn't have traded Rickey Henderson. But I see no proof that these decisions were irrational or that their purpose was to boost Steinbrenner's ego.

George is always gonna fire everybody if the Yankees lose in the playoffs, if the Yankees get swept by the Mets, if the Yankees lose to the Red Sox, if the Mets sign Roberto Alomar, if Steinbrenner eats a greasy pastrami sandwich for lunch.

The writers need to work a little harder on a new storyline.

2005-09-16 14:06:23
58.   Stormer Sports
Dude,

I hate greasy pastrami, he better fire somebody!

2005-09-16 14:40:53
59.   randym77
Lawton. Oy. It's not his hitting that worries me, it's his fielding.

A friend of mine had this to say about Lawton's tenure at Pittsburgh:

"He continually misjudged balls. He would jump up after the ball had passed him; he'd be way out of position; he'd get late breaks on the ball. Then about every 20 games he'd make a spectacular catch. I can't understand why the Yankees have him doing anything except DH."

Because we need an outfielder, not a DH, obviously. :-P

Bubba's hitting well, and his fielding is a lot more solid than Lawton's. Bubba's baserunning strikes fear into my heart, though. Wasn't he the one who neglected to look at the runner ahead of him, and passed Jason Giambi? (This ain't golf, Bubba. You can't play through.) He made two baserunning blunders last night (though luckily, the first time the Rays didn't have anyone on 1st to throw to, so he got away with it).

2005-09-16 15:04:21
60.   Rich
Buhner for Phelps wasn't irrational?

Better tell Frank Costanza.

2005-09-16 15:39:09
61.   Stormer Sports
Calzone!

Ok guys, I live to suffer your ridicule another day. I must venture into the world this evening and will catch only bottom line scores if I'm lucky.

Good thoughts, another big game, that goes without saying.

It's in their hands now. 1.5 out and .5 out respectively. If they win at least 4.5 of 6 here on out, they are in, well I think so. More wins would be preferable.

Cleveland and Boston now an afterthought, considering the math. If they win, they're in, if they don't, they aren't. Simply have to be a little better than both to get in, that is not a terribly large thing to ask of this team.

Carry the day boys!

Go Yankees!

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.