Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Help
Bang, Zoom
2006-09-26 05:08
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

The Yankees knocked the snot out of the Devil Rays to the tune of 16-1. The highlight of the game came in the first inning after Bobby Abreu hit a three run dinger. Tampa's starter, Jay Seo was clearly getting squeezed by home plate umpire Alfonso Marquez. He didn't get a call against Alex Rodriguez, who walked. Robinson Cano reached base on an infield single, and then Seo got ahead of Hideki Matsui 0-2. After taking a ball and fouling two pitches off, Seo didn't get another call. A couple of more foul balls, followed by another near miss.

That was when D Rays' skipper, Joe Maddon and pitching coach Mike Butcher had all they could stand. The two men went Batsh**t Tavarez on Marquez, really letting him have it. Marquez was not passive, as he and Maddon looked like two chickens, yelling in each others faces, moving back slightly and then going back in for more. Crew cheif Larry Young was pushed aside by Butcher, and two Tampa Bay coaches had to restrain their pitching coach. Maddon and Marquez were ejected from the game and when play resumed, Matsui fouled off three more pitches before depositing the fourteenth pitch of the at bat over the wall in right field for another three-run bomb.

In more important news, Randy Johnson has been scratched from his start this Thursday due to a strained back which he said "locked up" at the moment:

"I'd rather have 10 or 12 days between starts and feel better than pitch on my regular turn and feel the way I do now," Johnson said. "I'm missing my last regular season start, which has no bearing on me statistically or on the team, basically, in order to get healthy, or as healthy as I can get, for the playoffs."
(Don Amore, Hartford Courant)

As it stands now, it seems as if Chien-Ming Wang will start Game 1 of the ALDS, Mussina will go in Game 2, and the Big Unit will pitch Game 3. It's a strong possibility that Jaret Wright will start Game 4. In other injury-related news, Mariano Rivera looked much better last night than he did in his return last Friday. Hideki Matsui is expected to start in left field tonight while Jason Giambi will hit off a tee today (Torre insists that Giambi needs to be able to play the field in the playoffs).

Comments (142)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-09-26 06:01:32
1.   joejoejoe
I see in the boxscores that Gary Sheffield has a single in each of his last two games. How is he swinging the bat? I can't tell if his hits are bloops or line drives from the boxscore.

Can anyone who saw the games give a review of Sheffield's progress at the plate?

2006-09-26 06:05:52
2.   Sliced Bread
Before putting my sons to bed last night, I watched the first inning with them. They were intrigued by the rays swimming in the tank, (they hope to visit the Trop aquarium someday) but were even more curious about the angry Devil Rays going ape turd on the ump. I tried to explain why the grown ups were going at it like that in the middle of a baseball game. They're still too young to comprehend balls and strikes, let alone understand why someone would get looney mad about 'em.

On a lighter note, they loved Abreu's and Matsui's home runs. Damn, Bobby put a fine swing on his shot. That was gorgeous.

2006-09-26 06:09:00
3.   Sliced Bread
1 Sheff ripped a vintage foul ball over the weekend, and launched one just about to the track in dead center last night.

He's still finding his way at the plate (timing wise) and in the field (footing wise), but is progressing pretty quickly in my opinion. Still, I think it's dangerous to count on him at first in the playoffs. I think he's a better DH/PH option.

2006-09-26 06:10:34
4.   Alex Belth
I think Sheff is coming along slowly. Ripping some foul balls, placing some ground balls through the right side. He seems to be concentrating on trying to hit the ball to right. He's not Full Sheff yet, but he's progressing...
2006-09-26 06:21:08
5.   Sliced Bread
Anybody really worried about Unit's David Wells-meets-Carl Pavano (withholding injury info) impersonation? Me neither.

All season I've maintained a Forest Gump, life is like a box a' chocklits thinking about Unit. You never know whacher gonna git, and all that.

If anything, Unit's balky back reenforces my thinking that Lidle and Villone should not be on the postseason roster, and I doubt those guys can do anything at this point to change my perception of them as dangerous to the Yankees cause. Villone's arm is burnt toast, and Lidle is a shaky number five. Rasner and even Karstens are better options for long relief/spot start/garbage time at this point, in my opinion.

2006-09-26 06:25:32
6.   Sliced Bread
4 Good point re: Sheff pushing to right. I think that's more a symptom of just trying to get on base, than babying the wrist, or not trusting the swing.

And I guess you're right about him progressing more slowly, than quickly as I wrote in 3. He's been facing Devil Rays pitching, not exactly the stuff he'll be up against next week.

2006-09-26 06:45:08
7.   willdthrill
So a creaky Unit, which leaves us with possibly the third best starting rotation in the four teams in the AL playoffs.
I think Yankees fans are relying too much on this lineup to carry the team through the playoffs. We've seen this team get shut down for long stretches in the post season the last few years. The addition of Abreu may not stop that trend this year. Having the third best starting trio going into the post season guarantees a high wire act again this post season. Right now, I like the Oakland A's chances of getting to the WS over the Yanks by a landslide.
2006-09-26 06:51:48
8.   rbj
For me, the highlight was Cannizaro's homerun and smile after. He's listed as having been born in 1978, which would make him 27. He doesn't look that old though.

Glad to see that Wang is going to be the #1 starter in the post season. Good duel between him and Santana.

2006-09-26 06:57:48
9.   Sliced Bread
7 Funny, A's fans are acting worried about making the playoffs today, due to Oakland's struggles to put the pesky Angels to sleep.

re: Unit. Does his suddenly (revealed) creaky back really change who the '06 Yanks are? If he pitches 12 days from now, as he says he will -- if he just shows up for Game 3, the Yanks are in the same situation they've been in all season long, not knowing which Unit is going to appear.

The addition of Abreu may not stop the Yanks recent trend of getting shut down in the postseason, (as you state) but the additional, er, additions of Damon, improved Cano, improved Jeter, better Bernie, etc. make that less likely.

2006-09-26 07:33:11
10.   RIYank
Sox drop into third place; Patriots shut down by Denver. It's going to be Moaning Week on sports radio in New England. I'll probably listen all day today!

From the Providence Journal:

Francona's remarks [about the coaching staff] have set off speculation about the job security of some of the existing coaches. In particular, given some growing disenchantment on the part of some vereran players with hitting coach Ron "Papa Jack" Jackson, it will be interesting to see if Jackson is invited back for a fourth season in the Red Sox' dugout... A number of Red Sox veterans have complained about Jackson's inability to break them out of slumps.

2006-09-26 07:39:00
11.   Jim Dean
9 That's it - Good Unit gives up 2-3 runs in seven innings. Bad Unit gives up 5 runs in seven innings. With a balky back, he's been Bad Unit. With rest, he may be closer to Good Unit, but even if he's not all the way back, if he gives up 3-4 runs in seven innings, I like our chances.

For as good as Oakland's pitching is, their lineup leaves much to be desired.

2006-09-26 07:43:36
12.   ericw
No way Sheffield is limited to PH duties in the post-season. He has got to be in the regular lineup as a DH. He still seems shaky at 1B. If Yanks play Twins in first round. Castillo will spend the entire series dragging bunts and watching Sheffield boot it or fail to get back to the bag or other problems of inexperienced first basemen.

His bat is too awesome to be on the bench as a pinch hitter. I know we all ove Melky, but the Yankees do not have as good a chance to win with him getting regular AB's over Sheff.

2006-09-26 08:09:29
13.   wsporter
I guess this is a little off point but does anyone get the feeling that this may not be GOB's last regular season home stand in Pinstripes? My sense is if he were retiring or moving on there would have been more made of it than there has. I guess he'll be back next year; hopefully as strictly a righthand reserve outfielder. I have to admit that I have some mixed feelings about it.
2006-09-26 08:14:44
14.   Sliced Bread
13 I don't think Bernie has made up his mind about next year.
I think he wants another ring, and would love to end his career on a high note.
If the Yanks go all the way next month, I could see Bernie retiring, going out on top. If they fall short, I could see him getting antsy around December, and calling Cashman about 1 more year.
2006-09-26 08:18:35
15.   Jim Dean
13 Bernie told me personally (really!) in Baltimore that "he hadn't thought about next year yet. I'll think about it after the season.". And it seemed like a canned response - like he's said it a million times before.

Honestly, I hope Cash doesn't re-sign him because we've seen that Joe will use him all wrong. I more excited by the following OF:

Damon
Matsui
Abreu
Melky
Thompson

And if they went with that I'm cool with Shef as a 1B/DH/OF. Then they would have gotten younger and faster and with solid OF defense. Plus, if they suffer another injury they have lots of redundancy. Thompson taking the 5th OF is an upgrade from Bubba to start this year and Bernie as more valuable than simply a RH hitter off the bench.

The tough decision for Bernie is whether he thinks he has something left. I'm sure another team would take a chance, especially at 2 million. But it will be up to him on whether to take it. A championship would also help him retire a Yankee, I'm sure

2006-09-26 08:20:39
16.   standuptriple
Nobody mentioned that it's now a best-of-6 for home field? Hopefully KC will put up some sort of fight in DET that last series. As much as I would love the Sox to finish in 3rd, we need to go into October on a roll by beating up on the birds of the division.
2006-09-26 08:24:04
17.   Schteeve
13 I think if the Yankees win the W.S. Bernie is through. If not...he comes back either with the Yanks or someone else.

I always wonder how much finances play into this. Like, did the guy blow all his money and he's just sticking around so he can keep getting the big league check?

2006-09-26 08:26:41
18.   Jim Dean
18 Yeah, Bernie was also rolling with three ho's, dripping with ice, on his way to his Escalade.

Okay, that I made up.

2006-09-26 08:29:31
19.   Sliced Bread
17 Not a chance he plays for another team. If the Yanks don't want him, he'll go back to his family, and his guitar, and eventually do the ambassador of the game thing. He won't sully his career wearing another uniform at this point.

I don't think it has anything to do with money either, mostly competitive pride, and wanting to add to his MLB leading postseason RBI/HR resume.

2006-09-26 08:30:43
20.   pistolpete
17 If finances were an issue, I don't think Bernie would have signed for as little as he did. He comes off as a down-to-earth, sensible guy who wouldn't blow his money on fast cars & fast women. Now someone like Giambi, for example, I could definitely see on the autograph circuit until he croaks.

IMO, Bernie just loves the game, and loves being around this team. He's been through too many good times and great moments just to walk away. Unlike guys like Paul O'Neill & Brosius, Bernie was here when things were at their worst - he was here for Stump Merrill, nuff said.

If I was Bernie, I'd be sticking around for as long as they'd allow me to.

2006-09-26 08:31:16
21.   C2Coke
5 Sliced, you somehow manage to crack me up every time! Thanks a lot for the laugh in the morning.

Unit's problem, to me, demonstrate the upside of having Rasner on the PS roster, but why do I still think Torre will have Lidle instead?

13 I think Bernie's decision will be based on how they do in the PS. He will retire with another ring. It's always better to leave on the high note, the Yankees fans will forever remember and love him fondly. Let's just cross our fingers and hope they'd do it! ......I saw Sliced's post in 14 after I finished typing...

The real issue, at this point, in my opinion, is not Sheff or Bernie but that Unit will be here for another year.

2006-09-26 08:34:40
22.   C2Coke
20 And now with all the youth in the clubhouse, it definitely feels great to stay as part of it. It's a bit funny how it almost seemed more certain that Bernie was to retire last year than this time around.
2006-09-26 08:36:08
23.   C2Coke
21 demonstrate_s_ ...sigh...
2006-09-26 08:40:17
24.   yankeemonkey
Lidle is listed as the starter for tonight's game against the O's. I would guess that how he does tonight will determine whether he makes the roster. If he gets bombed again, it would be really hard for Torre to justify including Lidle over Rasner/Karstens....
2006-09-26 08:42:52
25.   wsporter
I agree that if we win the chance that Bernie retires will increase. If not I can see that it's probable he comes back. What I don't see is Bernie playing in another uniform. I do think he'll quit before he does that unless the front office somehow pisses him off.

The reason I have mixed feelings about his comeback is that I would like to see a youngster get the 5th outfield spot. I think one of the reasons the vets on the team showed such life and professionalism this year was the presence of the youngsters on the team. If KT is the 5th that's great as it would be if Sardinah, Christian, Duncan (Shelley) or Gardner were given a chance to fill that role.

If he does retire I see a glorious May afternoon in 2007 on which we hold Bernie Williams Day at Yankee Stadium. There'll be Whole Lota Love that day.

2006-09-26 08:44:04
26.   Jim Dean
24 If Lidle gets bombed tonight and Rasner gets the start on Thursday, Rasner may just have a shot to earn his trip to the post-season. From what I hear too, Lidle also has Sunday. Hopefully those aren't just meaningless starts but will be used to evalute the pitching slots.
2006-09-26 08:44:29
27.   Peter
13 I kind of got the impression when they were talking to Bernie during the division clinch celebration, that he thinks this may be it. It will be strange when he's gone.
2006-09-26 08:49:44
28.   Jim Dean
25 Speaking of Sardinha, anyone hear a reason for the jump in his numbers when he moved from AA to AAA? He went from dud to stud in a matter of months.

Gardner I see as another year away. S.Duncan and Christian I'm not convinced can hit enough.

As for Bernie Williams Day, I'm surprised he haven't had a Paul O'Neil Day yet. I think they've held #21 out of circulation but maybe I'm wrong.

2006-09-26 08:52:34
29.   pistolpete
28 Yeah no one's gotten #21 since Paulie retired, but interesting how quickly they gave #46 to a bench player like Guiel. I wonder how much politics goes on behind the scenes with uniform numbers...
2006-09-26 08:55:36
30.   Simone
I'm optimistic that the time off will help RJ's back, at least for the first series.

With Mauer and Morneau's bats in the line up, I think that Twins will be a challenge for the Yankees. However, I am confident that the Yankees can win the pennant.

I'm pleased that the White Sox missed the playoffs. I was tired of them the day after they won the World Series.

2006-09-26 08:57:10
31.   Jim Dean
29 I know what you mean. #24 really suprised me when I first saw it on Ponson. wierd though - revered hitter to scrub pitcher and revered pitcher to scrub hitter. Pattern?

I think you're right. I wonder who makes those decisions. No doubt the equipment manager has a great view of Yankee history. But at some point I have to imagine someone makes the final calls on whether/when to release iconic numbers (#21 and #45) for circulation.

2006-09-26 09:00:39
32.   unpopster
7 this is a very different team -- and a very different situation -- than last year. Last year the Yanks spent themselves in September trying to just get into the post season, and by the time they won the division in the last weekend and travelled to Anaheim, they were exhausted. It was an old team that peaked by late September.

This year, the team is rested and younger (sparkplug Melky, a seasoned Cano, Cy Wang, Everyday Proctor, and fireballer Bruney), plus deeper offensively (thank you Bobby Abreu).

Where as last year we couldn't rely on a tired starting offense to carry the team, I think this year we may see a very different post season Yankees team -- rested, more focussed, and seemingly driven to win it all this time.

I have a lot more faith in the 2006 Yanks then I have had in any Yankee team since 2001.

2006-09-26 09:02:05
33.   wsporter
28 Jim I think one could make a case for each of those guys getting a shot but I think if Bernie is gone that the 5th spot should be KT's to loose.

I saw Sardinah a couple of times this year in June. His swing looked really loooong. I read in Pinstripes Plus that he had shortened it up and that he had raised his concentration level which may be code for "he got his ass in gear". In any event he put himself in the picture with his late season run.

2006-09-26 09:02:26
34.   Jim Dean
Of the 1996-2000 dynasty we looking at these numbers going up in plastic at the new park?

#2
#20
#42
#51

#21 make it? Anyone else?

(And sorry meant #46 in 31)

2006-09-26 09:04:24
35.   Jim Dean
33 Thanks. Sardinha could be a nice mid-season pickup if he keeps his ass in gear. Maybe we need Bowa on him too? Okay, that sounds really bad and gross.

34 Of course, let me add #6 too. No doubt.

2006-09-26 09:11:25
36.   C2Coke
32 "This year, the team is rested and younger (sparkplug Melky, a seasoned Cano, Cy Wang, Everyday Proctor, and fireballer Bruney), plus deeper offensively (thank you Bobby Abreu)."

Amen to that...Amen to that...

34 You don't think #6 will make it?

The day when someone chose that #2 for Jeter, man, wasn't that person wise?

2006-09-26 09:11:27
37.   Jim Dean
Sorry for posting so much - extra special procrastination from work today.

Anyone know the story of how Jeter ended up with #2? Did he ask for it? If so, wow was that presumptuous! If not, how insightful! I mean he's the guy that restarted the Old Clipper magic on and off the field. He ends up with a single digit which perfect represents that, especially because his best years have been in the 2 hole just like the way the original numbers were set.

2006-09-26 09:13:05
38.   Jim Dean
36 37 Great minds - question is: who did the choosing and why? That's a great story there - maybe we'll have to wait until Derek Jeter Day to hear it?
2006-09-26 09:13:20
39.   C2Coke
32 Add another tough and happy Damon to that list.
2006-09-26 09:15:05
40.   C2Coke
37 No, Jeter said it before that he was handed the jersey and he didn't get to pick at all.
2006-09-26 09:16:00
41.   C2Coke
38 Great minds indeed. And I hope that Derek Jeter Day could be delayed for as long as possible.
2006-09-26 09:18:03
42.   pistolpete
36 While I agree that Torre should probably get his own plaque, why not McCarthy and Miller Huggins as well?

Yankees are going to need to go to triple digits in about 10 years, I guarantee it.

2006-09-26 09:19:57
43.   pistolpete
40 I remember hearing that the clubhouse guys sorta know who the 'special' players are going to be, and they give out the 'better' numbers accordingly. Jeter was one of those 'special' players - turns out they were right.
2006-09-26 09:21:45
44.   JL25and3
Funny, I don't see 24 and automatically think of Tino Martinez. First comes Willie Mays, then Rickey Henderson. For that matter, when 34 suggested retiring 20, I wondered why Willie Randolph's number would be retired.

I don't see any problem with giving 24 or 46 to any player where it seems appropriate. Neither number is all that hallowed.

I doubt that 20 will be retired, but 6 will be.

2006-09-26 09:26:17
45.   Jim Dean
43 Wow, good for them. I want quote from the equipment manager though in the story. They were spot on.

They didn't do too well with #51 or #42 though, no? Jorge's taken #20 and made it his Yankee bitch.

Torre must have had a say with #6 though. Me, that would have been a great Jorge number. Too bad Martin got #1 - overated as a manager and as a player. That would have been a great CF Henderson type if he ever comes along.

2006-09-26 09:30:43
46.   Jim Dean
44 Yeah, for #20 maybe that's my affection for the lug speaking, combined with the fact that he got screwed by "Torre Trust" his first two years and especially in the 1997 playoffs.

Jorge isn't a particularly beloved Yankee and that's probably what holds him back. But in his time with the team he's consistently been in the top three of catchers. Another ring or two could certainly help.

2006-09-26 09:38:17
47.   joejoejoe
374043 I believe Jeter when he says he just got handed the jersey. The last two players to wear #2 were Mike Gallego and Wayne Tolleson so I don't think they were saving it for a special player.
2006-09-26 09:39:41
48.   Sliced Bread
re: #'s that should be retired:
Can't wait to rock my #45 jersey at
Jay Witasick/Armando Benitez/Felix Heredia & Carl Pavano Day at the Stadium.
Woo hoo!
2006-09-26 09:42:42
49.   JL25and3
45 #42 is nothing to sneeze at. Some guy named Robinson, if I recall...other high numbers can become prestigious by association. 44 is an obvious example - not only Reggie but Henry Aaron. Quite a few players have taken 21 because it was Clemente's number - usually Puerto Rican players, but I wouldn't be surprised if O'Neill took it for the same reason. And 54 will always be Gossage to me...

I agree that it was a mistake to retire #1; also #9, #10, and #32.

2006-09-26 09:43:05
50.   C2Coke
42 I can smell the three digit jersey coming as well. It's called the Yankees Dynasty.

45 Jorge's got more of a personality, I guess. I've always been one of Jorge's big fans regardless of his number. While Bernie's # 50 is a bit strange, Mo's #42 turned out to be interesting since he's the only who's allowed to carry that number in MLB.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-09-26 09:44:28
51.   JL25and3
48 Don't leave out Danny Tartabull.
2006-09-26 09:45:11
52.   C2Coke
50 Sigh...Bernie's #51...

48 Excellent!

2006-09-26 09:47:33
53.   Simone
I just read Gordon Edes' special column about his previous Manny criticism which includes a number of fan responses which apparently were overwhelming and occasionally intense. Here is the link: http://tinyurl.com/pdtgs

I thought Edes' original article on Manny was tough, but like with Verducci's A-Rod article, I think that it is the clubhouse perspectives that make these articles interesting. Steve Goldman in his Pinstripe Blog said that the Yankees didn't welcome A-Rod as a teammate and that they would be sorry if they lost him. I think that this also applies to the Red Sox organization, players and fans. A-Rod and Manny are superstar players who have quirky personalities that are magnified under scrutiny. I'm not convinced that they deserve all the criticism that they receive in their respective cities.

2006-09-26 09:49:23
54.   C2Coke
Alex, for the upcoming schedules on the sidebar, I think you forgot that the Yankees are coming home for the last 6 games.
2006-09-26 09:49:31
55.   Flip Play
About Jeter's #2... I read, and it might've been in Olney's book, that Jeter wanted #13, but Leyritz had it so he just asked for the lowest available number. But, yup, totally perfect.

And weird that ARod would wind up with Jeter's lost #13.

Agree that #1 and #32 probably shouldn't have been retired.

2006-09-26 09:51:13
56.   Sliced Bread
51 Danny Tartabull was never on the Yankees, and anyone who says otherwise is a liar!
2006-09-26 09:52:50
57.   C2Coke
53 As much as I agree and appreciate your perspective. I'd get nervous nowadays when I see Arod and Manny in the same sentence. In fact, I'd get nervous just reading Arod's name in any sentence besides when he makes a great play or hit.
2006-09-26 09:55:25
58.   Jim Dean
Any doubt that #1 was due to Big Stein's mancrush on him?

Weird how much affection Billy got. First his drinking buddies then the Boss.

2006-09-26 10:03:23
59.   pistolpete
44 Randolph wore #30
2006-09-26 10:07:17
60.   pistolpete
BTW, found this site for a listing of all the Yankees numbers:

http://ultimateyankees.com/yankeeplayernumbers.htm

2006-09-26 10:09:49
61.   JL25and3
59 D'oh! Of course. 20 was some shortstop - I think he hit a homer somewhere in there.
2006-09-26 10:14:51
62.   pistolpete
Who, Bobby Meacham or Alvaro Espinoza? ;-)
2006-09-26 10:15:03
63.   unpopster
Dear fellow BB posters...though I hesitate to do this on this forum, I am going to take a stab at it and say "ya never know":

I recently found out that my position is going to be eliminated so I am now on a serious job search. Perhaps someone you know or your company is looking for a seasoned marketing/promotions professional in the NYC area. If so, I'd love to talk to you. I can be reached at unpopster@yahoo.com.

I apologize that I've sullied this discussion with my real world issues, but as I said before...you just never know.

Now back to the topic at hand...

2006-09-26 10:16:53
64.   JL25and3
59 It's particularly embarrassing that I should miss that. In the same way that many here associate 20, 24, 41, 46 etc. with the 1996-2000 teams, I associate a lot of numbers with those late 70's teams. 17 is MIckey Rivers, 25 is Tommy John, 31 is Ed Figueroa (and Dave Winfield, to be fair), 10 is Chambliss, and so on.

And #9 is Graig Nettles. Steinbrenner retired it for Maris right after Nettles left as a free agent, as a deliberate slap.

2006-09-26 10:19:49
65.   JL25and3
56 Too funny. I think a better way to put it is that he never played for the Yankees. Whatever he was doing, it sure as hell wasn't playing baseball.
2006-09-26 10:20:47
66.   Jim Dean
60 Thanks!

What about Stick Michael - any one think he has a shot (#11)?

2006-09-26 10:21:52
67.   Murray
42 Neither McCarthy nor Huggins wore a uniform number while managing the Yankees.

The Yanks could offer one of those ridiculous-looking "Mathewson NY" plaques that the Giants had on the outfield wall in Candlestick ("No Giant player will ever bear the name "Mathewson"...). But I'd hate that.

2006-09-26 10:24:30
68.   Murray
55 And if it deserved to be retired at all, 9 is retired for the wrong player.
2006-09-26 10:25:16
69.   singledd
i would like to see MORE restraint exercized in retiring (player) Numbers. Like anything else, the more there are, the less meaning it has. I love Paulie... but putting him in a group with the Babe, Gehrig, Joltin' Joe, the Mick, Yogi...

It ain't right. Give Paulie (and others of that ilk) bobble-heads, a plaque, a monument (a real little one) or some other honor.

Retiring a number should be the highest honor in the sport. Higher then the HOF... simply the ultimate honor. As for the Yankees, my criteria would be:

1) Longevity as a Yankee: Reggie was a Yankee for 5 years (2 with an OPS under .900). The guy in an 'Oakland Athletic'. The guy bummed out Thurman. He was a great player, and an icon... but not a career Yankee... so let someone else retire his number.

2) A great player with great stats (for their position). Again: Babe, Gehrig, Joltin' Joe, the Mick, Yogi... I love Bernie but he wasn't even the greatest CF'er of his generation. He had years where he was the best CF'er of the year.

3) An Icon: (again: Babe, Gehrig, Joltin' Joe, the Mick, Yogi... and add Willie, Clemente, Pete Rose, Stan the Man...and of course, Jackie Robinson). These names are not just great, put a part of baseball folklore. These names are known by people who don't follow baseball. These names might even be known in many foreign countries.

Mattingly. My favorite all-time player next to Mantle. He was known as 'Donnie Baseball'. He's close for me, but not a shoe-in. His numbers weren't even as good as Winfield's.

Paulie. Love the guy. Not even close.

Guidry. Very close. 14 years. 3.29 ERA (kaufax and Ford were 2.75, but in a better era for pitchers)

Jetes. 99%. He fits all 3 criteria, yes?

Bernie: He's close, but I wouldn't do it.

Again, I am NOT denigrating any of these guys I have followed and love. I just want to hold retiring numbers in the absolutely highest esteem.

2006-09-26 10:26:15
70.   C2Coke
63 Can't really help you, but just want to wish you good luck!
2006-09-26 10:31:21
71.   pistolpete
64 Well, not so much #41 - I wouldn't consider Sterling Hitchcock a big part of those championship years... ;-)

Although that site does say Posada wore #41 at one point.

2006-09-26 10:32:40
72.   rbj
69 sounds good. That'd make it #2, #6 and #42 (which will have to be retired in any event)
Maybe #22 & #28 as well. And what about #43, or will they just mount Proctor's arm in the park?

67 Tigers have the same thing for Cobb. But that's back in the days when they didn't have bases, they used rocks.

2006-09-26 10:34:01
73.   Max
53 Actually, things are really ugly in Red Sox nation these days, and their fans are acting the part.

Edes' family received a call at his home in response to the Manny column, and check out the really ugly comments section at Soxaholix (full of racist invective and profanity, though not much actually about the Sox...just directed at anything because they're so PO'ed with life). There are a lot of great things about Boston as a city, but it really turns into a spiteful, small-minded town with a completely entitled attitude when things don't go well. No wonder so many players want to avoid playing here.

2006-09-26 10:45:53
74.   Jim Dean
69 You're probably right on Paulie and why we haven't seen it happen.

I think Bernie does fit the criteria and with a different attitude meant for NY, it would be a no doubter. And I think your criteria of being the greatest at their position in their generation is a bit extreme. There are alot of great players (Williams and Mays with Mantle) in the league at one time. I say the only CF clearly above Bernie for his generation was Ken Griffey Jr and we've seen how that has ended.

Jorge also suffers from how he's perceived. Comparing him and Munson, Jorge has the better numbers albeit in a different era. Still, Jorge was the catcher for three straight rings. That means something and the guy's not done yet. By the time he is, he'll be over 10 Yankee years, top 3 catcher of his generation (behind Piazza and Pudge - two surefire HOF's). It's the iconic status he lacks - but even Yogi really only got that once he retired. It's hard to stand out when you're surrounded by icons.

And what about extra credit for number of rings? Some of these guys get more credit because they won, no? Torre too, no?

Donnie Baseball gets extra credit because he was the only thing really worth rooting for back then, no?

2006-09-26 10:47:31
75.   Shaun P
69 Very interesting criteria. I'm not sure I agree but that's a great argument.

That said, I am in favor of retiring fewer numbers, not more. Posada, for example, is a great player, a big part of the last 10 years - but I don't think #20 should be retired for him. As much as it pains me to say this, I feel the same way about the #46 jersey hanging in my closet. Sorry, Andy (btw - anyone think he might come back to NY?).

From this group, I see #2, #42, #6 (also worn by Steve Sax!), and #51 going up. Paulie's #21 will probably join it eventually - I gotta imagine he isn't ready for that to happen, which is why it hasn't.

I also have to believe that Randolph's #30 will also eventually go up there. Dude was the greatest second baseman in team history - apologies to any Joe Gordon and/or Bobby Richardson fans out there - as well as a coach for what, 13 seasons?

I'd say Winfield's 31 also deserves retirement, but I don't see that happening until after the Boss is gone, if ever.

2006-09-26 10:48:28
76.   jonnystrongleg
69 Yeah, restraint would be nice in some cases, but if that "restraint" requires not retiring Bernie Williams' jersey, you have wildly over done things.

51 gets retired without hesitation.

2006-09-26 10:50:34
77.   Flip Play
69 #2, #6, #21, #42, and #51 are going up on the wall.

And I guess one day we'll see #13 up there too... though a few years ago I thought the same thing about Clemens' #22. We would've had Clemens day in '04 if the Rocket didn't unretire himself.

2006-09-26 10:56:58
78.   jonnystrongleg
O'Neill seems like a test case of sorts. Kind of has Reggie's resume give or take here and there.
2006-09-26 10:58:04
79.   Jim Dean
77 Let me give Jorge one last defense. For his generation, who was better at C all-around?

I say only Pudge.

And Piazza was only a hitter who could stop balls from rolling all the way to the backstop.

You going to penalize Jorge for coming in behind those two?

The guy got screwed by Torre, and especially in the 1997 post-season, now you're going to screw him again? Why, because he doesn't have Munson's personna?

All I know is Jorge has been irreplaceable for the Yankees and he's got some life left. Look how hard it's going to be to find someone to fill his shoes. A hitting CF came in free agency. A hitting C is not so easily replaced especially one that also plays legit defense. Unless you like the sound of Greg Zaun.

/rant

2006-09-26 11:05:21
80.   jonnystrongleg
79 In comparison w/ Dickey, Yogi, Howard and Munson, I cannot see a reasonable argument against Posada.
2006-09-26 11:05:36
81.   DarrenF
53 Do you remember when Schilling said the Red Sox would not have won the 2004 Series if they had ARod on their team? I thought that was an embarrassing thing to say ... about himself.

A $20 million borderline HOFer who is actually admitting that his performance and/or preparation would be affected because he doesn't like his teammate?

Does anybody really want to know how much I dislike some of my coworkers? This afternoon, I actually fantasized about getting promoted, becoming somebody's boss, firing this person on the spot, and composing my elegant grievances memo for the HR department.

Despite this, I'm here at 9:00 am and the stuff in my inbox quickly becomes stuff in my outbox. Except when I'm wasting time on bronx banter. Like right now.

"Shut up and play" applies to all of them.

2006-09-26 11:07:00
82.   Flip Play
77 I love Jorge and he is more of a Yankee than Reggie or Maris, but he has been overshadowed by bigger stars, sadly taken for granted, and is going to fall short. I'd put him on the wall, but as far as the organization goes, I don't see it happening.
2006-09-26 11:07:49
83.   Flip Play
Meant to reference 79 and not myself at 77.
2006-09-26 11:13:13
84.   LI yankee
77 Hopefully in 15-20 years #22 will be retired for a different player.
2006-09-26 11:18:38
85.   Sliced Bread
This one could take a while.

From the Yankees.com preview of tonight's pitching match up:

NYY: RHP Cory Lidle (11-10, 4.86 ERA)
Lidle is 0-2 with a 10.13 ERA against the Orioles in two starts this season.

BAL: RHP Hayden Penn (0-3, 15.43 ERA)
Penn allowed seven runs in three innings in his only start against the Yankees in 2006.

Player to watch
Jay Gibbons has owned Lidle during his career, batting .435 (10-for-23) with three home runs and 11 RBIs against the right-hander.

2006-09-26 11:25:15
86.   Shaun P
86 Then again, don't all the games against Baltimore? Well, we wanted to see more offense out of the Yanks . . .
2006-09-26 11:25:17
87.   JL25and3
71 41? I wonder what on earth I meant to say...
2006-09-26 11:26:02
88.   AbbyNormal821
RE: Retired/Retiring Player Numbers - I don't know if this was mentioned, but I think, think Rivera is the ONLY player left who wears the #42 on any team. That # was Jackie Robinson's, if I remember correctly I believe and was retired across the board for all teams, but Rivera's use of that # was grandfathered in. (dammit, where's my brother - he knows all about this stuff). Anyone else care to confirm?
Sidebar - I think once Jeter & Torre are done, their #'s will be retired for sure. Jete should still be playing when the new stadium opens, right as he'll be the ripe old age of 35!
2006-09-26 11:27:04
89.   bp1
85 Hopefully Sheff can mash this guy and build a bit of confidence at the placte. Err ... not that Sheff lacks confidence in any way, shape, or form, but you know what I mean. I wanna see the guy smoosh a few pretty soon.

#2, #6, #42, #51 are no brainers, to me. #13 is probably the best hitting 3rd baseman the Yankees will ever have. It will be interesting to see how history treats his time in New York. Is he Reggie to Jeter's Munson (where both turned into Yankee icons), or is he Winfield to Jeter's Mattingly (where one was just about run out of town)? Time will tell.

Biggest number for me, though is, #27. As in World Championships. I cannot believe it starts next week.

2006-09-26 11:31:17
90.   LI yankee
88Yep, Mo is the only one and will be the last one ever to wear #42 in baseball.
2006-09-26 11:31:46
91.   pistolpete
88 You're correct about Mariano and the number 42.
2006-09-26 11:38:24
92.   Schteeve
If they retire #30 (Randolph) #6 (Torre) #2 (Jeter) # 51 (Bernie) #20 (Posada) and #42 (Rivera,) they're gonna have to start putting punctuation marks on the back of dudes jerseys.

I say Jeter, Mo and Torre get their numbers retired. Bernie and Posada not so much.

2006-09-26 11:41:31
93.   rbj
They'll retire #30 after Willie's done managing the Yankees to 6 more WS titles.
2006-09-26 11:43:09
94.   SF Yanks
#39 has to be up on the wall. Who is it you ask? My all time favorite player, Darryl Strawberry. I have heard enough drug jokes to last a lifetime (why doesn't he just snort the foul line, yada yada), so please refrain. But of course if you must...

I jumped ship when he jumped teams, and where he ended up is where I ended up, the Yanks.

I know people automatically think, "Oh, another bandwagoner, you're not a true Yankees fan." Tell that to the people that know me, and listen to the response. Lets just say he ended up on the Brewers, well I would be on a Brewers site right now. When he was on the Dodgers I would, as a kid, wear a Dodger uniform while going trick or treating in San Francisco. Yeah, I didn't get much candy then.

Sorry. Kind of came out of nowhere. Felt it was time to show my side. And yes, I'm kidding about his # being retired.

2006-09-26 11:50:52
95.   JL25and3
80 I can't really judge Dickey, but he basically just got his number retired because he shared it with Berra.

I don't know if Munson's number would have been retired if he hadn't died the way he did.

Howard's number clearly shouldn't have been retired.

And, with all due respect to Jorge, he's not comparable to Berra. Posada's been an excellent player for a long time, but I'm not sure if he's ever been a great player. Berra won 3 MVPs and was a no-brainer for the Hall of Fame.

2006-09-26 11:51:38
96.   JL25and3
By the way, I'm glad there's a consensus on retiring #6. Roy White's been kept waiting for way too long.
2006-09-26 11:56:25
97.   RIYank
96 Hello? Rick Cerone. Whom my dad always called 'Pete' for no reason I could ever fathom.
How about this rule: number retired when player is elected to the Hall.
2006-09-26 11:58:02
98.   rbj
It's funny, of the core homegrown nucleus of Yankees in this current dynasty: Posada, Jeter, Bernie, Rivera and even Pettitte, none has won a Cy Young or MVP (though Jeter may break the streak this year). The only top shelf award went to A-Rod last year. Just amazing that no one has been so outstanding in any particular year, yet the Yankees have had such great success.
2006-09-26 11:59:14
99.   Sliced Bread
94 Strawberry's greatest Yankees moment: 1999 ALCS, the Fenway a-holes are derisively chanting "Just Say No!" at him, and he smacks the ball out of the park (off Pesky's pole, wasn't it?). Shut those bastards up good. That must've felt great for Straw. I was so happy for him.
2006-09-26 12:08:14
100.   rbj
Are Straw & Doc out of the pokie these days?
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-09-26 12:09:19
101.   SF Yanks
99 Memory is very shaky. Actually I don't believe I ever had one. To prove it, one of my greatests was, Straw was sittin on the bench (8,9th inning) bases juiced. Opposing team puts in a LH reliever for a LH batter. Bench reacts with a RH hitter. Opposing team then reacts with a RH pitcher to face the RH hitter. Then once again pinch hit a lefty to face the righty pitcher. Straw that is. Proceeds with a grand slam.

Yeah, a little confusing, thanks to a shaky memory. It's funny how everyone has a few moments that just stick out.

2006-09-26 12:10:29
102.   DarrenF
99 ... followed by Chambliss in the dugout saying, "Just say yes!"
2006-09-26 12:10:36
103.   SF Yanks
100 Last I heard was Straw was doin some baseball counseling for the Mets, and helping little kids. Something along those lines.
2006-09-26 12:11:06
104.   jonnystrongleg
92 I am in shock there is more than one person on this site who doesn't want Bernie's # retired. To each his own.

95 There are several great yankee catchers and Posada is right there with them. If you want to take away 3 of the other 4, fine, he no longer compares with Berra, possibly the greatest catcher in the history of baseball. But that wasn't the point.

97 I think that's a bad policy. Having your number retired by the Yanks is an entirely different honor than being in the HOF. Matingly and Bernie absolutely should have their #'s retired and probably should not be in the HOF.

2006-09-26 12:16:00
105.   AbbyNormal821
90 & 91 Thank you!!

YAAAAAAY I knew something!!!! {tee hee}

2006-09-26 12:23:11
106.   JL25and3
104 On the other hand, players shouldn't have their numbers retired on the basis that they're comparable with other players whose numbers shouldn't have been retired. Posada = Elston Howard isn't much of a case.
2006-09-26 12:31:41
107.   Bama Yankee
No offense to Melky, but if you are ever on Jeopardy and Alex Trebek says: "He was number 28 for the Yankees" everyone knows what you should say...

Here's a few pics of ole #28 in action:
http://tinyurl.com/jnksl
http://tinyurl.com/ksulc
http://tinyurl.com/gc2f2
http://tinyurl.com/z82jx
http://tinyurl.com/hvvma

2006-09-26 12:33:09
108.   jonnystrongleg
106 First of all, Posada doesn't "=" Howard - but something tells me you already knew that. Posada is one of the greatest catchers in Yankee history and deserves the same consideration as the rest of them. That doesn't mean he automatically gets his number retired - just that he should not be dismissed becuase he happened to play on a team laden with other stars.
2006-09-26 12:33:47
109.   Sliced Bread
107 Are those images from "Yankeeography: Karim Garcia"?
2006-09-26 12:35:58
110.   Schteeve
If you retire everybody's number it sorta loses it's special-ness though. That and the fact that you'll run out of numbers.
2006-09-26 12:40:36
111.   Bama Yankee
109 Yes, the DVD is scheduled to be released in November... to coincide with Karim's annual release (from his team and from jail)...
2006-09-26 12:46:08
112.   Sliced Bread
111 I can wait to hear Sterling's read on the opening track:

"Who is Karim Garcia? Lover? Fighter? Both? I'm John Sterling, and this is Yankeeography: Karim Garcia."

2006-09-26 12:46:57
113.   Sliced Bread
112 Meant to say "can't wait," but "can" is more accurate.
2006-09-26 12:49:19
114.   JL25and3
I guess we disagree on criteria. As I said, Posada's been an excellent player, but I don't think he's ever been a great player.

To me, your argument - "he should not be dismissed becuase he happened to play on a team laden with other stars" - fits Bernie much better. I think he came much closer to greatness than Posada ever has. From 1996 - 2002 Bernie was almost certainly the best player on the Yankees - maybe not every year, but over the 7-year span.

2006-09-26 12:55:14
115.   Shaun P
107 Who is Chad Curtis?

With all the single-digit numbers sure to be retired after Jeter and Torre each retire, anyone want to bet on how long it will take for some wise guy to ask for #0? How funny would it be to see a guy with a zero on the back of his jersey and nothing else!

2006-09-26 12:59:36
116.   jonnystrongleg
110 Bernie's current Yankee career rankings:

AB 3rd, R 5th, H 4th, 2b 2nd, HR 6th, RBI 6th

Yeah we shouldn't retire everybody's number, but the retired numbers discussion should START with this guy. He's not even close to the borderline.

114 Posada has been a GREAT player at times. Best on the Yanks in 2000 and 2003. But, again, not saying his number should be retired. Just in the mix.

2006-09-26 13:11:14
117.   Flip Play
116 That's all that needs to be said about Bernie. He absolutely deserves the honor.

Ahhhhh, but can you imagine #33 on the wall? Boomer Wells Day. It'd never ever happend, but it's nice to daydream. Hotdogs and beer for everyone!

2006-09-26 13:11:57
118.   Bama Yankee
112 That DVD would make a great (red) stocking stuffer this Christmas...
2006-09-26 13:17:24
119.   standuptriple
101 Was that the game in Oakland? It was the first half of a double-dip IIRC? If that's the one, I missed it because I went to the car for more free beers (in my defense I was in college). Never left a game early since.
2006-09-26 13:21:14
120.   Chyll Will
99 You left out the second best: May 19, 1998, after Tino is zapped by a Armando Benitez fastball to the square of his back and getting jumped by the entire Yankee bench on the mound, Darryl's fist goes into the visitor's dugout and says Hi! to the side of Benitez' head.

With an MSG close-up no less.

2006-09-26 13:21:46
121.   JL25and3
Speaking of Boomer Wells, I was astonished to find that baseball-reference.com doesn't list that nickname for Greg Wells. He was the original Boomer Wells; David just got the nickname as a sort of hand-me-down.
2006-09-26 13:21:59
122.   Bama Yankee
116 & 117 I'm with both of you about Bernie. What else can a guy do?

BTW, great screen name Flip Play

2006-09-26 13:32:37
123.   rbs10025
Regarding #42.

At the time it was retied across the board, four players were still wearing the number and were grandfathered.

Two have since retired: Mo Vaughn and Butch Huskey. Huskey continued to wear it for several years and several teams, but eventually the Twins said no.

One may or may not be wearing it, and apparently it caused a big stink when the Mets tried to assign it to him earlier this year: Jose Lima. Apparently he'd worn other numbers since 1997.

And that leaves Mo, the last.

2006-09-26 13:37:29
124.   C2Coke
82 Jorge's case might still be in the air, maybe how the next few years play out will decide it.

84 I hear you, man. And a # 40 would be absolute HUGE for Asia.

98 None of them in a given year as of now, but ask any baseball fan to name a big four on a team in MLB (not just the Yankees)in the past decade. There is no doubt that those are the four would be named.

Can't believe we will be down to three very soon.

2006-09-26 13:47:32
125.   Jim Dean
114 I disagree wholeheartedly. If Jorge hasn't been a great player, then you have your expectations ridiculously high so that only first ballot HOF's are great.

Of his generation, name one catcher besides Pudge, who has been better on both sides of the plate. It's the most difficult position on the field, and he's solid defensively but offensively.

Watch how hard it is going to be to replace him. He's irreplaceable in a premium position.

BTW: Bernie's highest rank in the MVP voting? 7th in 1998.

Jorge? 3rd in 2003.

Jeter? 3rd in 1998.

2006-09-26 13:53:46
126.   Jim Dean
And Bernie should be a no doubter.

In fact, I'd argue for simpler criteria:

a) Been with the team for more than ten years

b) Finished once in the top ten of MVP or Cy Young voting.

That's it. My guess is a lot of guys would get excluded one wayu or another (Petitte and Reggie) and some would just get by (O'Neil).

This worry about running out of number though is silly. At least until another dynasty comes and goes. Retiring numbers is about recognizing the history of the team. Jeter, Mo, Bernie, and Jorge are the 1996-2000 dynasty. It's not a coincidence that all play the most premium positions on the field that cannot be easily replaced.

2006-09-26 14:00:45
127.   JL25and3
125 You're absolutely right about replacing Posada. He's the most irreplaceable player on the team, more so than Jeter or Rivera or anyone else, simply because there isn't even a mediocre major-league replacement available. that may speak more to the failure of the Yankees to provide a plan B than to Posada's greatness.

I agree, he's solid on both sides of the game, and major-league catchers are tough to come by. I've repeatedly asserted his excellence, but I still have trouble with "great." The fault may be mine, but that's how I see it.

2006-09-26 14:12:17
128.   Jim Dean
127 Fair enough. Irreplaceable to me equates with greatness.

Shoot, Varitek is far from great, and noticeably thinner this year, and look how much the Sox suffered this year without him. But he could be replaced by Greg Zaun.

2006-09-26 14:14:47
129.   Jim Dean
128 Sorry, but Jorge is also irreplaceable across MLB for the last eight year. Only Pudge would have done the same job he has done. Isn't that saying something?

Irreplaceable isn't just in the organization but across baseball. Both are very empty of solid two-way catchers. And it's been that way for 100 years.

2006-09-26 14:21:25
130.   Yank fan in Eugene
I think it's interesting to note that since Manny took himself out of the lineup in the Yankee series,Ortiz has only hit 9 HR's, not very MVP like. Despite the Sox fans griping about Manny being Manny, I wonder how good Big Papi (or the Sox) will be without Manny batting behind him.
2006-09-26 14:27:00
131.   pdc7
Today in the Chicago Sun Times Jay Marriotti has a great piece on the White Sox. A co-worker of mine is a White Sox fan another is a Cubs fan both are from Chicago. Last year I caught myself rooting for the Red Sox in the ALDS 1) REMATCH and 2) The White Sox were hard to root for especially after listening to my co-worker and his idiotic baseball knowledge and mentality all season.I caught myself thinking after the White Sox won game one of the Big Series " Jesus Christ can this really be happening, we could beat these guys. Anyway it just kind of gets me worked up that Red Sox Sports Networ...err I mean ESPN or other national media outlets are not making a bigger deal out of Chicago's second half collapse. The excuses coming from the team and Ozzie are thin and weak. Yankee haters can bash New York -it is thier birth right but what they have managed to do is special. And I really feel going into these Playoffs that this team is special. It just feels right. Here are some excerpts from Jay's column..... Capt. Paul Konerko said the Sox "were a little short in the tank" this year after experiencing a post season that lasted all of 12 games and finished October 26, almost 4 months before they reported to Spring Training. Fans do not want to hear the Sox were tired when the New York Yankees, who also made the playoffs last autumn, are not at all tired and look primed to win it all. In fact the Yankees are a fine reference point as what the Sox tried to be, only to fail miserabily and return to thier traditional woulda-coulda- shoulda 3rd place berth in the AL Central. The Yankees had many more injuries than the Sox, many more reasons to give up, but thier manager Joe Torre, showed Ozzie the meaning of maturity and couth under pressure. This is known as false smugness, a condition the Sox had no right to embrace as ONE TIME champions. They are not the Yankees. They are a team that almost choked last September, got every October break, faced fair to middling competition in the Red Sox, Angels, and Astros. I'd say Ozzie lost more than games- he lost his team. There was a moment in Boston when A.J. Pierzynski caught a foul pop, apperared to ready to give it to a kid in the stands, then teased the poor fan by keeping the ball as only A.J. would. It was typical of a club that had a high opinion of itself but could not back it up. Embarrasing indeed...... Well said Jay. And without further ado I turn this rant over to my friend ( a life long,suffering Cubs fan) as he tells the south side schmucks..."Wait til Next Year"... Well said Brandon, well said.. Go Yankees. Derek Jeter MVP . Carl Pavano Rajah of Rehab
2006-09-26 14:32:40
132.   JL25and3
126 I'm not really in favor of any rigid set of criteria. But honestly, you might want to tighten those up a little. By those standards, Monument Park would include the likes of Hank Bauer, Spud Chandler, Lefty Gomez, Gil McDougald, and Bobby Richardson. Not to mention a slew of others.
2006-09-26 14:47:00
133.   Chyll Will
132 Karim Garcia?
2006-09-26 14:49:46
134.   randym77
Godzilla is roaming LF again...

Johnny Damon CF
Derek Jeter SS
Bobby Abreu RF
Alex Rodriguez 3B
Gary Sheffield 1B
Robinson Cano DH
Hideki Matsui LF
Miguel Cairo 2B
Sal Fasano C

Cory Lidle P

2006-09-26 15:00:14
135.   Shaun P
135 I hate to see Melky on the bench, but c'est la vie I suppose. The dude will be great as a LIDR - in either LF, or at least for the rest of the regular season, CF - and should he come to bat in the late innings, I wouldn't be sad at all. Not with his OBP.

That's the thing I like best about the Yanks' current bench. Outside of the 'necessary evils' (I use the phrase loosely) of Miguel Cairo (reserve IF) and Sal Fasano (reserve C), everyone else on the bench knows how to take a walk = makes outs less often. It really reminds me more and more of the great bench from '96-'98.

Go Yanks!

2006-09-26 15:02:49
136.   randym77
Yeah, it looks like Melky will take over what used to be Bubba Crosby's role: LIDR and pinch-runner.

Though you never know. Like Joe says, these things tend to work themselves out. Giambi couldn't hit off a tee today. The 3rd cortisone shot apparently hasn't helped much.

2006-09-26 15:08:47
137.   Chyll Will
131 Before you nearly lost me for rooting for the Ded Sox last year >;), I gathered this much from your take on the national media freezeout of Blight Sox wonderment...

The White Sox were never really taken seriously as a potential dynasty team for several reasons, most involving Ozzie Guillen. For what it's worth, Guillen feeds a lot of mouths with his mouth, what with all the conscience-free ranting he's done to this point, but he's not the crusty Stengal or nitroglyceric Billy Martin type when it comes to media relations, particularly where Mariotti is concerned. Ozzie's mouth has done as much damage as it has done to push players to their limits, and this year is in Chicago is hardly unexpected from those who observed the team on a first-hand basis. I would hazard a guess as to say that even E$%& was waiting for the wheels to fall off, but only cared if it meant the Ded Sox had a clear path to the WS, with the Tigers seen as North St. Louis 2004. Didn't happen the way most people wanted it to, apparently, so they could care less about a team they figured was going to collapse under it's own weight anyway.

All to say, it's hard to imagine what teams like the Yankees and Atlanta had done over the past decade in this time and age, especially when you consider what parity can do to a sport as opposed to what the powers that be would want to have. For, as you can plainly see, money is everything and it is absolutely nothing.

2006-09-26 15:15:32
138.   C2Coke
136 The only difference is that Melky is so much better.

You are right on that x-factors. After how this year has played out, one thing I've learned is that we won't know until when the time comes. I hope Giambi is ok, but it's really hard to say. I hope Sheff will pull a Matsui soon, but it's really hard to say. I hope Cano will get the batting title, but it's really hard to say. And yet, everything is very possible.

2006-09-26 15:20:37
139.   Zack
128 129 Did you disagree with yourself there, or am I missing something?
2006-09-26 15:27:22
140.   randym77
138 Melky's a better hitter; I still think Bubba is faster and better on defense. But Melky's good enough, and certainly an upgrade on GOB.

It was really striking that Joe put Melky in CF last night. I think that was the first time this season that Melky's played CF. (For Yankees - it was his regular position in Columbus.) Even when we could have really used Melky in CF, Joe would never move him there. Until now.

2006-09-26 15:40:16
141.   randym77
Kim Jones reports that Giambi and the Yankees are "very optimistic" that he'll be back in the lineup soon.
2006-09-26 18:18:11
142.   Bama Yankee
133 "Who is #28?"

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