Rangers shortstop Michael Young remembers last year's All-Star Game in Detroit, when he was sitting in the dugout with Rivera next to him. A moment later, Gary Sheffield came up to Young.
"Sheff goes, 'That's a legend right there sitting next to you,'" Young said, "and Gary Sheffield is a potential Hall of Famer (yet) he's the one who singles out Mo. Those are the kinds of things that stick out in your mind. ... (Rivera) might be the most respected player in the league."
(Daily News, 7/11/06)
I didn't see much of the game, but I did see my boy Vlad's dinger. Is there anyone else in the big leagues who could hit a pitch that high and hard for a homer? Maybe Piazza in his prime. Regardless, it was a classic Vlad shot. Also saw Mo in the ninth, putting heads to bed, as is his wont.
Briefly, Jon Heman examines the Bombers' need for a starting pitcher, while Bill Madden talks about the Yankees' possible interest in Phillies rightfielder Bobby Abreu:
In the Yankees' only discussions with Gillick, the Phillies GM asked about top pitching prospect Philip Hughes, whom the Yankees will not include in any deal. But as the deadline draws closer and Gillick is unable to unload Burrell, the thinking is he'll come down on Abreu's price to at least get rid of his contract. In many ways, the lefthanded-hitting Abreu would be a perfect fit for the Yankees in that they could put him right into Gary Sheffield's salary slot for next year.
The Yankees have also gotten a strong recommendation on Abreu from his former manager Larry Bowa, who believes the 32-year-old right fielder would thrive in a situation where he doesn't have to be the top gun.
I've heard that fans in Philly think Abreu is a chump. I know the sabermetric crowd fawns over him. He's expensive, but without seeing him on a regular basis, there is a lot to admire about his game. If the Yanks get Abreu, it's curtains for Sheff. If Gillick steps off his asking price (Hughes), this is the kind of splashy move that might be hard for the Yanks to resist--George would be satisfied aquiring a big name, while Cashman and Stick get their kind of player (good defense, speed, high on-base percentage).