Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
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2006-10-07 19:42
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

The Tigers handled the suddenly hapless Bronx Bombers with ease today, pounding New York 8-3 and ending the Yankees' season. Jeremy Bonderman pitched well, while Jaret Wright made an early exit (he gave up two dingers in the second inning). The offense was completely flat. Jeter had a hit and Posada hit a late home run, but Alex Rodriguez, dropped to eighth in the order today, was horrid, and Gary Sheffield and Robinson Cano were not far behind. The end came swiftly and without mercy for the $200 million Yankees. They are sure to get decimated by the press in the coming days and weeks. Rodriguez may get so much abuse that the Yankees may consider trading him.

This was nothing short of a stunning way for an entertaining season to end. The Tigers deserve a good measure of credit--their pitching was especially strong. But after Game One, the Yankees played tighter than a tick's ass and they are left with the bitter taste of defeat to ponder for the next four plus months. Or as everyone's favorite whipping boy put it:

"You kind of get tired of giving the other team credit," third baseman Alex Rodriguez said after another terrible October. "At some point you've got to look in the mirror and say, 'I sucked."'

This one stings right now. But keep coming back and we'll commiserate together. Hey, you guys are the best.

Comments (114)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-10-07 19:56:56
1.   ny2
"I've been successful in New York during the regular season," Rodriguez said. "Obviously, I have to find success in the postseason. There's a lot to be learned from guys like [Derek] Jeter and [Jorge] Posada and Bernie [Williams] and Joe [Torre], the guys that have done it. It seems like they play so relaxed. Posada, Jeter, they had monster series. There's something to be learned from those guys."

http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/...t=.jsp&c_id=nyy

2006-10-07 20:07:55
2.   Ron Burgundy
Honestly, I'm still stunned as to how our season just ended like this. How did this happen?
2006-10-07 20:15:31
3.   Simone
Appropriate title, Alex. I got sucked in by the Yankees' line up. I was so convinced that they weren't going to make the playoffs this season, only to watch turn it around after the trade that I thought for sure they could overcome their flaws. I never thought they would be dumped out in the ALDS.

I just cannot believe that Cashman will allow the irrational media and fans convince him to trade A-Rod. However, the some comments on this blog and around the Internet towards the Yankees are disheartening.

2006-10-07 20:17:33
4.   ny2
He's not going anywhere ... he's too good of a player ... the only problem is the fans will never let him be ... next yr might actually be worse than this yr ... also we don't know the club house situation
2006-10-07 20:26:04
5.   yankz
Thanks Alex, but we'd all agree that you (two) are the best. (Even if one of you abandoned us in our time of need ;) )

This is such a horrible feeling. I miss those magical years, where I was happy 12 months a year. I hope I don't get too excited about next year's team like I did for this one. My stomach can't handle it.

2006-10-07 20:27:33
6.   yankz
Er, baseball happy. Baseball is a huge part of my life, but I can find other ways to be happy, and I hope everyone else can.
2006-10-07 20:28:12
7.   MVB
Switch managers ( Leyeland managing New York and Torre managing Detroit) and the Yankees would have swept the series easily.
2006-10-07 20:32:31
8.   manila boy
Been lurking almost two years here. Just wanted to say, Thanks for the great blog, Alex and Cliff! And to the great Banter community, too.
2006-10-07 20:40:27
9.   Alex Belth
From Pete Abraham's blog.

"That's what is so disappointing," [Brian Cashman] said. "This team, it had something. At least I thought it did. That, 'I'll find a way to beat you.' They fought through a lot this year. But you have to continue to earn that every day and we did not here in October. It turned out to be a hell of a regular-season team. No more."

2006-10-07 20:40:40
10.   mikeplugh
Thanks Cliff and Alex.

I'll tell my story about this series and the last game at COH either tonight or the following day....within 24-36 hours.

To sum it up, anyone who looked at our pitching staff this year and thought we would be a World Champion was looking at things through Pinstriped-colored glasses. I count myself among that crowd, but it's very clear. Our bats were horrible, but it's not a forgone conclusion that we would have won if our bats were better. The Tigers pitching was so clearly superior to ours in the three wins that it may have been a moot point.

It would have been nice to lose a more competitive series if we had to lose, but pitching wins championships and hitting wins division titles. If we haven't learned that over the last 6 years, I don't know if we ever will.

Thanks again, and a special thanks goes out to Carl Pavano for stepping up and contributing to the ballclub this year. We didn't really need you, man. Wright and Lidle were just fine.

Talk to you all in the next day or two.

2006-10-07 20:42:14
11.   Adam B
7: Torre didn't manage well today, but to say that is a huge joke. The Yankees wouldn't have performed any better with a manager screaming at them or one smoking 5 cigarettes a minute in their faces. They simply did not hit well and were overmatched by power pitching.
2006-10-07 20:45:58
12.   yankz
The only good part about this is that Red Sox Nation comes out of hiding. I am not exaggerating when I read a post somewhere from a Sox fan saying that this (watching the Yankees go down quietly) was better than watching the Sox win.

Hey, maybe if your team didn't, you know, become the most expensive 3rd place team in history, you guys could show us how it's done.

2006-10-07 20:52:51
13.   yankz
mikeplugh, at first I was skeptical about handing DM $75 million, but I think I'd do it now. Mostly because of your convincing, partly because I don't want to see Jaret Wright next year.
2006-10-07 20:56:51
14.   Maniakes
I'd trade A-Rod for the right price. Say, if the Twins offered us Santana and Cuddyer straight up.
2006-10-07 21:05:35
15.   rilkefan
Alex and Cliff - thanks for the great blogging this year. Thanks also to the many insightful or funny or just good-to-hang-out-with commenters here.

Looking forward to some smart moves in the off-season and development by Cano and Melky and new faces next season.

2006-10-07 21:09:26
16.   rabid stan
I actually had a blast this season, as bad as the end was, and Alex & Cliff, and the rest of you crazy Banterers had a lot to do with it. Thanks guys.

Remember: pitchers and catcher report in February.

2006-10-07 21:14:18
17.   Mike T
I didn't find this blog until the end of the season, but I'm glad I did because I like it here. BTW, the Mets just finished up their three game demolition of the Dodgers. At least one NY team knows how to take care of business in the postseason.
2006-10-07 21:14:43
18.   Stormer Sports
Do the Mets have the Yankees old luck tonight or what?
2006-10-07 21:16:26
19.   joejoejoe
Thanks Alex and Cliff for a great year.

It's going to be hard to reshape the field players and bench because of all the guaranteed contracts. It might take something creative involving Melky and/or Cano. Which of the guaranteed contract players do you think would want to move?

Abreu, Damon, A-Rod, Giambi

2006-10-07 21:18:37
20.   brockdc
Right back at ya, Alex. No hypberbole - you guys are outstanding.

Mike P., you're spot on. When I think about it, CMW has had a brilliant season, though he'd most likely be the #3 guy on the Tigers staff, after Verlander and Bonderman, with Robertson not far behind. Simply put, it is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to compete in the posteason without two bona fide stoppers.

This one stings.

2006-10-07 21:20:58
21.   seamus
19 I don't think we have to do anything with our offense/fielding guys except let go of Sheff. I'd rather play Melky and save that money for pitching.

Pitching, pitching, pitching. We can stand to add 1 or 2 arms to our pen, but what we desparately need more than anything is starting pitching. We have Wang. Wright is there for depth. And I think that is all we can count on right now.

2006-10-07 21:23:36
22.   Maz
9 This team did have something, but, believe it or not, it was the team that consisted of Cabrera, Guiel, Phillips, Fassano, and all the other scrubs that toughed it out down the stretch. These guys were playing for something and it should have been taken into consideration when putting together the playoff roster.

I hate to be a Torre basher, but when is this guy gonna get it...this wasn't one of the Yankee teams of the late 90's. He continues to believe the veterans are always, without question the way to go. Sure if they're the veterans of the late 90's teams...but not these guys. They just seem to play with, and I know it's been said plenty of times, no heart. It's been proven time and again, you've got to stick with what got you there. Blindly believing Sheffield and Matsui could just get their groove back was absurd.

I, like the rest of you, just don't really know what to say. I'm sure in the back of all our minds, we saw this coming. The team scraps all year, finally gels and pulls away, and then...

Between the return of Sheffield and Matsui, the deterioration of Johnson, and Torre's tinkering with the lineup...what could you expect. Alex Rodriguez batting 8th? What the hell was he thinking? How was that going to help anything? Once again, poor defense (the Sheffield experiment should end immediately and he should be sent packing), sub-par pitching (how they're going to solve that I don't know), and the lack of timely hitting have done in the 200 million dollar leviathan again.

2006-10-07 21:24:10
23.   Stormer Sports
19

I don't see it. Abreu is still a good fit. Damon and Giambi aren't going anywhere. Would you pay Jason Giambi 20 million dollars? How can you move that and make it worth your while?

I don't see them dealing Damon under any circumstances, and who would play Center?

I guess that's how I look at it. We could certainly move players, but I think the salaries make it unworkable. We would have to eat a ton of salary and I just think that factor, combined with what we are likely to get in return in terms of talent, make any deal in which the Yankees move any of those guys, being worth the risk. It has too much downside. Just my 2 cents.

Wow, this Mets team is like a 2004 Dodger second home. How did that deal for Penny work out for ya'?

2006-10-07 21:26:33
24.   Stormer Sports
22

I agree, but what could Torre do, sit Sheffield and Matsui? Can you imagine the questions and coverage if he sat those guys and we lost? The earth would open up and swallow Joe Torre.

2006-10-07 21:30:26
25.   ny2
What happened between game 1 and now ... game 1 was like the perfect night and then just an absolute collapse
2006-10-07 21:36:46
26.   Xeifrank
I think George needs to up the payroll to $300 million next year! vr, Xei
2006-10-07 21:38:06
27.   Stormer Sports
25

Dude,

The difference is that we had pitching in Game 1. God, I hate Cliche expessions, but Pitching Wins Championships. It might not have mattered, but it sure would have been nice to see what would have happened if we got 4 straight solid pitching performances from OUR staff.

2006-10-07 21:38:49
28.   Stormer Sports
This is like the NBA. No team that's down in the series is even making the series interesting.
2006-10-07 21:41:03
29.   brockdc
22 I will say this: They were a lot more fun to watch when they were rotating all those scrubs in and we were whining about how laughable the daily lineups were (Posada batting cleanup, Guiel batting 6th, et. al.) They were also winning and playing exciting baseball.
2006-10-07 21:44:17
30.   joejoejoe
21 I think Giambi makes the team stagnant because he clogs the DH position that a veteran team can use to give regulars a bit of a break for minor injuries. I thought that when they signed him. I like Giambi but I prefer Olerud-type 1B, not bashers.

As far as a shakeup I think there is a strong correlation between how far the Mets advance and how much change takes place in the Bronx.

2006-10-07 21:46:07
31.   capdodger
23 Wow, this Mets team is like a 2004 Dodger second home. How did that deal for Penny work out for ya'?

Just fine, thankyou. The blue made the playoff that year and this (but then got bounced...). LoDuca was about to feel pressure from behind from Martin, who's every bit the hitter and a better backstop than LoDuca. Plus he's younger and cheaper. The Dodger's Bully was lights out that year, so dealing Mota was dealing from strength. What Fox never tells you is that that deal was the first half of a three-way that fell apart at the last minute. Penny, Edwin Jackson (Now with the DRays), Brown (a AA pitcher from FLA) and a AAA catcher were to go to AZ for Mayne and Randy Johnson. Of course, that didn't happen but that was the thinking at the time.

It's not even the "most contreversial Dodger trade ever". The Fox-Forced Piazza and Zeile for Sheffield et. al. takes the cake for that title.

So uh... What are the Yankees gonna do with A-rod?

2006-10-07 21:46:29
32.   Stormer Sports
30
"As far as a shakeup I think there is a strong correlation between how far the Mets advance and how much change takes place in the Bronx."

I think you're right! So, is it Go Mets, or Go St. Louis?

2006-10-07 21:48:55
33.   Stormer Sports
31

Retire his number in Left Field somdeday, we'll win, count on it.

2006-10-07 21:50:23
34.   Maz
24 That's exactly what he should have done. Coverage be damned. You know who would have done that? Leyland would have done that.

Torre is absolutely, unequivocably, the wrong manager for this team. Here's a guy who stepped into the right situation in 1996, the team was already assembled they just needed some veteran guidance, he was the guy then...along with Zimmer of course. He road that for all it was worth, but when it comes to really managing a team, e.g. the last few years, he just doesn't have the skills. Ever since Zimmer left, we all know this, he hasn't been able to get over the hump. I used to skoff at the $200 million remarks. But now I believe. A $200 million dollar team should win. So obviously, there must be some motivation problems. Torre appears lost and it reflects on his team. I would really like to see what someone like Bobby Valentine or Lou Pinella (I prefer Valentine) could do with a team like this. The whole grandfatherly Torre thing has grown extremely old. His continued bullpen mismanagement is becoming the stuff of legend. I know you can't completely blame Torre, this was the team he was given, old and defensively challenged. But come on, he's got to know what cards he's playing with. Shaky defense and unreliable pitching will always burn you in the playoffs. I apologize I'm venting a bit here. The guy should have known Matsui and Sheffield weren't ready. No one would have crucified him for leaving them off the roster. Everyone knew they were both coming off big injuries. Hell, at least for the first round. He could always add them if they made the second round where you've got more room for error. The Yankee organization should have known better. It feels like Groundhog's Day, they've been getting burned the same way for the last four years.

2006-10-07 21:54:28
35.   capdodger
33 - I seem to hear that every year.
2006-10-07 22:01:59
36.   Stormer Sports
35

It's not as easy as it looks.

I mean look at the Mets, they lost their entire pitching staff and they are still crushing the Dodgers. There is just no way to know what is going to happen in the playoffs.

2006-10-07 22:04:56
37.   capdodger
Swept, not crushing (sic). This last one was death by one-thousand little papercuts. You know, a bleeder here, a bleeder there, next thing you know you're dead. Not like the the Tigers wrecking balls. That's crushing.
2006-10-07 22:09:33
38.   Orly Yarly NoWai
I wish...

I wish Pavano hadn't been such a baby.

I wish Sheff and Matsui's injuries had been a little less severe.

I wish Randy Johnson's arm didn't have three trillion miles on it.

I wish A-Rod had gotten some support throughout the year.

I wish Mussina'd been able to hold a lead.

I wish Torre'd been a little quicker with the hooks in game four.

I wish we had realized that this isn't soccer and booting the ball is bad.

I wish we hadn't gotten rained out.

I wish the bats hadn't chosen the worst possible moment to die.

I wish a despiccable person hadn't chosen the worst moment to throw one of the best games of his career.

I wish and I can't wait for April.

2006-10-07 22:18:32
39.   ric
"The Road to $300 million"
starring Barry Zito and Alphonso Soriano

coming soon to a theater near you!

2006-10-07 22:36:15
40.   brockdc
...I can't wait for April."

I can. If they don't gut this roster (and there's really no way they can) - especially the pitching staff - I'm convinced we'll be in for more of the same next season. I'm sure when March rolls around, I'll be chomping at the bit for baseball. But, for now, I can wait.

2006-10-07 22:37:56
41.   dzzrtRatt
34 Bring back Showalter?
2006-10-07 22:41:05
42.   ny2
did espn just say that torre has been fired and pinella is in?
2006-10-07 22:42:55
43.   ny2
This means A-Rod will stay b/c Lou loves A-Rod like a son
2006-10-07 22:44:39
44.   gibsonhobbs88
Quit whining, you spoiled Yankee fans!! You have such a sense of entitlement like you should just hold the WS troply in George's office in perpetuity!! Tigers outplayed your Yanks in every phase of the game after Game 1. Maybe your players started reading those press clippings after Game 1. The A's, Tigers and Mets have advanced playing baseball the right way and I am looking forward to interesting postseason baseball without hearing McCarver falling over himself on Fox boasting about the Yankees. Even though my Bums fell, we have a bright future with many good young players ready to contribute. Look out for the Dodgers in 2007 or 2008.
2006-10-07 22:48:48
45.   Strike4
36
At least one NY team knows which Dodgers to pick up. Brown and Sheffield were the wrong ones.
2006-10-07 22:50:24
46.   joejoejoe
42 I heard the same thing on ESPN. Torre out, Pinella in.
2006-10-07 22:52:06
47.   ny2
46. That was quick Joe probably knew this was coming and that's why he almost cried during his interview
2006-10-07 22:53:19
48.   Adam B
For those suggesting large changes, I suggest taking some time to calm down and be able to calmly evaluate the season. If we are to fire Torre, who takes over? Maz was run out of Baltimore (probably partially because Angelos is a dumbass) mostly because supposedly the team quit on him. Mattingly isn't ready to be a manager, nor is Guidry. Bowa is too much of a hothead. Don't even discuss Pena, as I'm pretty sure that his KC experiment has squashed his chances for now. And we've all heard the stories on Joe Kerrigan from Boston. Girardi is supposedly Showalter-lite and Joel Sherman in Birth of a Dynasty discusses why that didn't work and Arizona pre-2001 and Texas under Buck are further examples of that. Dusty is just awful. Frank Robinson's possibly worse.

So to say you want Torre gone means you want change for the sake of change, not for the sake of improving.

As for the roster, Sheff will be gone, Bernie will likely be gone, I'm not sure what happens with Villone and Myers (though I bet they can peddle Villone off to Krivsky next July if they bring him back). Moose, I think I'd like back. Randy will likely be back and just as shaky unless his back gets better. Wang, we'll still appreciate as he'll be in the prime of his career. Lidle will be gone. Wright, maybe the Yankees can get a bench player for him. Karstens will hopefully be competing for the 5th spot with Rasner, with the loser becoming a long reliever in the pen. Dotel will probably be gone and end up with a major league minimum for a team like Toronto. Sturtze we'll probably be happy to never see again. Glass-ass will end up being released at some point during the offseason after he sets himself on fire.

The pressing needs will be: 1B who can play solid D and hit more than Phillips (even if it results in a platoon with Guiel), a solid high strikeout starter, and making the team solid enough that Torre can have multiple guys for one role.

I don't know if I want A-Rod gone. I mean it'll be very unlikely that the Yankees get a fair enough package for him. And certainly he gets too much of the blame. Maybe he'll revert to 2005 form and make us forget everything that happened this year. Clearly there's a mental struggle with him, and it's frustrating for the fans, but if A-Rod can just get over it, I'd bet it'd be so rewarding for himself and for Yankees fans alike.

2006-10-07 22:55:59
49.   ny2
48. I'm not saying I want Joe gone at all.... but George just fired him for pinella so it's a mute point what we want
2006-10-07 22:59:22
50.   Adam B
I just saw it on ESPNews.. I think that's possibly one of the biggest knee jerks ever. Torre was problematic in his pen management and his sometime undying ability to stick with veterans, but I think to say he's done a bad job overall is to not rationally view what he's done.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-10-07 23:00:09
51.   yankz
49 Are you certain? Wow. I don't even know how to react, but more importantly, I don't know how the team will react. There were so many Torre loyalists in the clubhouse, most significantly Mo and Captain. Jeter has never known another ML manager (except his short stint in 95). This is really weird.
2006-10-07 23:00:10
52.   Orly Yarly NoWai
I think Dotel will be back; after all, we did sign him just after surgery and he could still take some of the load off Proctor. Sheff is going to go. I think Bernie will be back for a year. Moose will be back as he had a pretty good year. Randy, we can't get rid of. I hope we can get rid of Wright, but I wouldn't mind putting Lidle in the pen. Daisuke will be a priority; we'll probably go after Zito but I don't hink we'll get him. I hope A-Rod stays; he's still the best third baseman in the AL.
2006-10-07 23:01:24
53.   Xeifrank
With $200 million to throw around you'd think you could just hire Stephen Hawking as your manager. I could very easily see George spending $300 million next year. Why not! Afterall, money buys championships.
vr, Xei
2006-10-07 23:02:09
54.   ny2
this is going to be interesting ... Torre and Lou are like night and day we'll see how the players respond
2006-10-07 23:02:34
55.   Orly Yarly NoWai
I hope that's wrong...
2006-10-07 23:02:50
56.   Adam B
52: Dotel's not under contract for next year, and with the emergence of Bruney, the Yankees may feel they want to go with a younger pitcher instead
2006-10-07 23:03:37
57.   ny2
and like I said before thi means A-Rod will stay b/c Lou loves A-Rod like a son
2006-10-07 23:04:45
58.   Orly Yarly NoWai
52 I know he's not under contract, but he's got talent. He'd be a bargain at the minimum.

New York Daily News, according to Sportscenter, is reporting that Torre is "likely" to be fired.

2006-10-07 23:05:28
59.   ny2
George should have waited a while before coming out with this out of respect for everything torre means to the yankees
2006-10-07 23:08:03
60.   yankz
Why can't all Dodger fans be like the majority of the posters over at Dodger Thoughts? Yeah, Yankee fans suck because they're pissed their incredibly talented team lost in the playoffs to a team they owned during the regular season. We should all DIAF. And Tim McCarver is most definitely our fault.
2006-10-07 23:08:59
61.   Orly Yarly NoWai
No source was attributed; it's a tabloid; I don't put much stock in it.
2006-10-07 23:11:24
62.   brockdc
Drama.
2006-10-07 23:12:22
63.   smingers
If it is true, the timing would totally suck and be horrendously unfair to Joe Torre. Despite recent failures, he skippered this team to 4 World Series victories with dignity, grace and class.

However, I think the time is right for a change and Lou could be the right guy. I just wish it hadn't happened this way, if it did.

2006-10-07 23:14:56
64.   ny2
63. I agree they could even have torre "resign" but it just seems so unfair if he gets fired the very next day ... no wonder he was almost in tears during his interview
2006-10-07 23:21:24
65.   Adam B
ny2, you're right about A-Rod. I'm pretty sure this means he's staying. If they trade him, then I'll really hate this manager change (if it is a legit change.
2006-10-07 23:21:34
66.   capdodger
60 Perhaps because 17 and 23 slagged the Dodgers without an inkling of understanding that there was not a demolition, that that team was supposed to not even sniff the playoffs, or that the 2004 deadline deal wasn't as misguided as it seemed (only incomplete). We merely believe that y'all should, perhaps, tend to your own rows and avoid making uninformed, perhaps incindiary, comments about other teams. That was my point in 31.
2006-10-07 23:24:32
67.   ric
so, basically, 1 playoff win was worth $80 million? have a nice winter, suckers
2006-10-07 23:26:22
68.   joejoejoe
67 ric, the p is silent
2006-10-07 23:26:52
69.   Orly Yarly NoWai
67 I'd say something biting, but you're just too stunningly stupid.
2006-10-07 23:26:54
70.   brockdc
66 If we tell you that the Dodgers are awesome, will you go?
2006-10-07 23:27:23
71.   capdodger
67 It's a better value than $200. Putz.
2006-10-07 23:27:58
72.   ny2
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=2617224
2006-10-07 23:28:24
73.   capdodger
70 No. You all are fun. Not like those whiny Sox fans.
2006-10-07 23:29:26
74.   Strike4
60
Dodger fans aren't exactly happy tonight either. Misery loves company I guess. Too bad about Torre if it's true. Will Cashman stay? I seem to recall he barely survived the last big tirade.
2006-10-07 23:36:56
75.   pistolpete
Hey guys - didn't watch one second of this game today, spent the whole time at my dad's house in Jersey. I knew by the way they played on Friday night that I wouldn't want to anyway.

It's been a helluva ride getting here, just too bad it had to end this way.

I have mixed feelings on Torre: part of me wants a change, but the other part loves Joe like an old uncle. Just too many great memories to see him go out like this.

IMO, we need to move on: Sheff, gone. Melky in left, Matsui DH. Keep Abreu, Giambi at 1B.

Sign the Japanese fella, drop Moose, sign Zito. Work on getting Hughes up here by July. Pavano - oh, never mind.

Too depressing. Needless to say I won't be reading anything on the matter for about a month. BB is pretty much the only place I'm visiting until next March.

Night all.

2006-10-07 23:39:20
76.   pistolpete
74 Cashman's not to blame - he made all the right moves this year, and set us up for the next few years to come. I'd hate to see him go and the next thing you know we're back to trading blue chippers for the Estaban Loiza's of the world...
2006-10-07 23:43:41
77.   Adam B
75. Giambi at first is the worst possible move. He has no range and he can't throw for the life of him. Randy might give us a bit more yesterday (Not that it would matter) if Giambi makes that first pickoff throw.
2006-10-07 23:43:44
78.   ric
will Torre be gone? sheffield? arod? whos the #1? zito? are you sure? the unproven japanese ace? is moose staying? what happens when the boss retires?
2006-10-07 23:46:20
79.   pistolpete
77 Then who at first? Wilson? Giambi off the bench? You've still got one extra player floating around...

Like someone once said, if a game comes down to a fielding play at first, we don't deserve to win.

2006-10-07 23:47:43
80.   capdodger
79 Tell that to the '86 Mets.
2006-10-07 23:51:59
81.   ny2
Lohud:
Peter:
There are reports that Torre will get fired on Monday and replaced by Lou Piniella. If true, it means the following:

* The Yankees become A-Rod's team, not Jeter's. Piniella is an A-Rod guy and if he is the new manager, A-Rod won't be going anywhere. Jeter, Posada, Bernie and Mariano would be furious.

* Brian Cashman is a figurehead and George Steinbrenner and his toadies still run the show.

* The coaching staff will change dramatically. I'm not sure Mattingly and Guidry would stay or whether Piniella would even want them.

* I suspect this may be true. But I also think that Steinbrenner could have reacted in knee-jerk fashion and there is still time for his his son-in-law, Steve Swindal, to get the Boss to change his mind before it becomes official.

* If the Yankees choose A-Rod over Torre, which is what this would be, it's style over substance. Torre has to get some blame for what has happened. But it's not his fault he was saddled with so many one-dimensional players and mercenary types.

I suspect we will all learn much more on Sunday.

2006-10-08 00:04:57
82.   joejoejoe
7779 I think Giambi goes to the Angels.

The Angels were 11th of 14 teams in runs scored and played a platoon of Kendry Morales, Ryan Quinlan, Howie Kendrick, and Casey Kotchman. Giambi is from LA and would be a perfect fit.

How about Giambi, Cano, and Proctor for Garret Anderson, Figgins, and Scot Shields?

2006-10-08 00:16:00
83.   smingers
82 Um, hell no.
2006-10-08 00:16:13
84.   Adam B
82
You mean the Garret Anderson who isn't healthy much anymore, is a liability at the plate and in the field and is basically the Angels' version of Bernie from 3 years ago?

And Chone Figgins who has declined over the past 2 years at the plate to the point that he's only acceptable in CF?

2006-10-08 00:17:09
85.   Bob Timmermann
82
Technically, Giambi is from West Covina, not L.A. His boyhood home was actually closer to Angel Stadium than Dodger Stadium.
2006-10-08 00:24:06
86.   Bob Timmermann
If the Yankees took Garret Anderson off of the Angels hands, Bill Stoneman would promise to send Brian Cashman a nice Christmas card every year.
2006-10-08 00:44:03
87.   ncyank
I remember thinking before Game 2 that it was close to a must-win, because three-trillion-mile Randy (to borrow from Orly Yarly NoWai) and Wright, who was already up on blocks when the Yanks signed him, couldn't be counted on. We needed 2 wins from Wang and one from Moose in order to guarantee the series, and Moose couldn't deliver. It seems that, ever since his almost-perfect game in '01 (or maybe even before, in his O's days), that's been true of him: He's just good enough to lose. If, as Torre often says, Game 3 is the pivotal game of a seven game series, maybe it follows that game 2 is its five-gamer counterpart. I kind of knew the Yanks were doomed after the 4-3 loss, especially with all those LOBs.

As for Torre's possible firing, I'm at war w/ myself about it. I like him -- his benevolent steadiness is mandatory for the job -- but I do think that his failure to motivate a team of such great talent and focus in the postseason can no longer be ignored. That, ultimately, is his job, I think.

A-Rod could have used more support from fans, media, & players, but to me, all the support he should have needed came from Torre's sticking him in there every day during the regular season and letting him play. I agreed that moving him down to 8th was too little, too late -- and probably just wrong, anyway. Why erode A-Rod's confidence any more than it already has been?

Rob (Neyer) & Rany rather facetiously suggested packaging Mark Teahen + prospects for A-Rod. A-Rod would never bite, but I might. KC has some good minor leaguers after trading off scrap in the post-Baird era. I'd send Sheff away, pay Wright $4M not to pitch for us, ease Bernie into retirement, and hope Pavano finally pitches (well). Also, Posada's massive workload is going to catch up with him. Is there anyone in the farm system to inherit the mask?

2006-10-08 00:56:22
88.   Adam B
87: Hoping of Pavano to pitch was like hoping for Wright to turn in a solid outing today. And there is no immediate help for catching in the Yankees' system. Johnny Estrada is very likely to be traded from Arizona this offseason, but I'd think he would want a starting job, not a job to split.

And anyone care to explain how you do the links to the post number?

2006-10-08 00:56:45
89.   joejoejoe
82 I want to see the Yankees upgrade on pitching and I don't see their budget shifting from $200 million. You've got to squeeze cash from somewhere.

Giambi, Proctor, Cano = $43 M over 2 yrs
Figgins, Anderson, Shields = $36 M over 2 yrs

Roll the other $7M into SP and a cut rate Doug Mientkiewicz and you've gained flexibility, a better bullpen, and DH ABs for a veteran team at the expense of only a little offense. Obviously I'm wildly speculating here but it's fun. I also think Giambi was Torre's boy and if there is friction between Giambi and A-Rod then obviously A-Rod is going to win with Pinella and Cashman. A-Rod is healthier, younger, and cheaper.

2006-10-08 00:58:26
90.   joejoejoe
Adam B

Put brackets around the post number you want to reference.

[x88] - without the x

2006-10-08 01:00:40
91.   Strike4
85
West Covinans would agree that they are from the L.A. area, and disagree that they are from the Orange County area. Plus, traffic often makes the evening drive to Dodger Stadium faster, offsetting the three mile proximity to Anaheim Stadium from West Covina South Hills.
2006-10-08 01:03:34
92.   Adam B
89 $7 million won't get much in terms of quality pitching. Even if you tack it on to the amount they have freed from free agents. And ESPN painted there being friction between Giambi and A-Rod. It wasn't so much clear that there was in SI's report.

90 Thanks

2006-10-08 01:11:16
93.   joejoejoe
92 I'm just up late talking West Covina baseball. I think Giambi is a good fit with the Angels and the finances work for a number of deals. If the Yanks are going to shake up the team I think it's Giambi that gets dealt. For who(m?), I really don't know.
2006-10-08 04:46:18
94.   Wait Til Next Year
All this talk about dumping Torre or getting rid of position players is completely misplaced and is just going to lead to more post season disappointments. The team has incredibly bad pitching. If you fire anyone, you fire Gator. Do you think he could have gotten the Gambler to pitch so well for the Yankees? Steinbrenner needs to listen to Cashman about not rushing up Philip Hughes and giving other young arms a chance in the big leagues. They need to overhaul the bullpen and say goodbye to Moose, who can't hold a lead in the postseason, and Randy Johnson, who is obviously way too old to pitch. This team has to make some short-term sacrifices for next year, possibly not make the playoffs, in return for giving their young minor league arms a chance to develop.
2006-10-08 05:02:39
95.   randym77
22 29 I was thinking the same thing. Cashman said he thought this team had that "I'm going to find a way to beat you" scrappiness, and said they "fooled" him.

No, they didn't, Brian. The team that scratched out wins in the regular season was not the same guys as the one that rolled over in the postseason. It hadn't been the same since the trading deadline. You didn't notice because the Red Sox collapsed like a house of cards.

The Torre thing...holy geez. What a shakeup that would be. Bernie would probably retire if Torre was ousted. And who would hold Jeter's bat?

If the surfeit of one-dimensional mercenary players is not Joe's fault, whose is it? Cashman's? Steinbrenner's?

The press reports are hinting that Steinbrenner was furious that Melky was benched during the first three games, and it was the Boss who insisted Cabrera play yesterday. So I guess Steinbrenner now likes the young, homegrown players.

2006-10-08 05:13:46
96.   jdsarduy
The Daily News is reporting that Torre will be replaced by Piniella next season.
I would get rid of Mussina, Wright and Lidle.
I would love to get rid of Randy Johnson because he has been a failure in a Yankee uniform but I think we're stuck with him for another year.
I would love to bring in Jason Schmidt and Barry Zito.
Of course that would mean spending a ton of money, over paying them, out smarting every GM and bringing in Zito who's a bit of a head case.
But agree, pitching is and has been our main problem for years now.
2006-10-08 06:06:19
97.   Simone
If the news that Joe will be fired for Piniella turns out to be true then that means that Tampa is back in charge instead of Cashman and that the Yankees aren't winning squat anytime soon anyway.
2006-10-08 06:14:59
98.   Jim Dean
I don't understand where all the love for Cashman comes from. Yeah, he made a a great move for Abreu. But before and after that?

The Yanks lost the series becuase they were outpitched. That's not Torre's fault. That's the GM. For 200 million you'd think they have some decent pitching. Well, Unit stunk up the joint. And after that, in the deciding game of their season that had Jaret Wright followed by Cory Lidle - it smacked of 2004 all over again with the Brown Vazquez special.

If anything the loss reiterates what they already knew - the greatest lineup in baseball history can't win anything without some well-pitched ballgames. And when you look at all the moves in the last year, none involved starting pitching. And those that involved relief pitching weren't exactly improvements either.

See, if this was Cashman's first year in charge, then we can now judge his moves accordingly. Were they worth it?:

Stinnett - nope!
Farns - uh, probably not what they paid for.
Villone - yeah for a while, then nope!
Myers - maybe, but didn't do his job in the post-season.
Phillips - nope!
Cairo - uh, nope!
Bernie - worth the price but don't want to see him again. Thanks Bernie!
Abreu - overpriced but a good fit
Lidle - Chris Russo was right!?
Fasano - nope!
Terrence Long!
Scott Erickson!

Anywhere on that list do you see starting pitching?

No, this was the rotation they went in to the season with:

Moose
Unit
Wang
Pavano
Wright

And they went into the postseason with that as the rotation minus Mr. Glass. All were acquired by Cashman, except Wang. That's saying something.

Should Cashman be fired? I don't know - but he deserves much more of the blame.

2006-10-08 06:20:36
99.   Simone
98 Cashman is the only reason that Wang wasn't traded. Tampa acquired Wright. George wanted Randy Johnson and Mussina. Pavano was the best free agent on the market at the time. So Cashman is actually responsible for Wang and Pavano. At this point, it doesn't appear to matter if Cashman goes because with Tampa back in charge expect the worse.
2006-10-08 06:21:37
100.   Simone
98 Also, as foreign a concept as it is, the players are really to blame for not executing.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2006-10-08 06:28:48
101.   Jim Dean
Right and all those moves in the last year - that was the Tooth Fairy!
2006-10-08 06:38:46
102.   Count Montefusco
Defend A-Rod all you want, but PLEASE STOP referring to him as the "best third baseman in the American league." It is simply delusional.

Alex Rodriguez committed 23 errors, most in the league among third basemen. How does one square this with such ridiculous claims?

He grounded into 22 DP, 5th among all position players.

Most striking: among players appearing at 3B in the AL this year, ARod ranked 34TH OUT OF 35(!) in Clutchiness, posting an abysmal -2.23.
(http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.aspx?pos=3b&stats=bat&lg=al&qual=n&type=3&season=2006

The incessant citing at this blog of ARod's cumulative stats is baffling. ARod was blessed with far and away the best top of the order in the league. What kind of numbers, I wonder — and please, be fair — do the apologists here think Troy Glaus (104 RBI) would have posted in this lineup, with the insane protection and opportunity ARod had? Joe Crede (93 RBI)? Hank Blalock (89 RBI)? Adrian Beltre (89 RBI)? Mora? Inge? Mark Teahan?

(BTW, these are players additionally capable of fielding their positions.)

I am not one to boo players, and feel genuinely bad for A-Rod. I've been disgusted with the way fans have treated some players this year — not least the booing Scott Proctor got in early Sept. after having gone above-and-beyond-the-call for the 129th time.

But the facts are plain, and you can throw all the numbers out if you want. A-Rod isn't working here. To cite his graceless style; his seeming robotic movement; the appearance that he is a pure guess hitter; his seeming discomfort on and off the field: these aren't observations made in lieu of statistical analysis, as some have claimed. They are perfectly valid considerations.

Cashman needs to find someone who is a "good fit" and get this club away from its 5-year-old Rotiserrie League directive ASAP. Moving ARod is the place to start.

2006-10-08 07:15:36
103.   pistolpete
80 There was a game 7, you know.
2006-10-08 07:31:03
104.   randym77
98 I credit Cashman for what he didn't do. He didn't trade Hughes, or any other young arms (except Matt Smith, and I think that was reasonable).

But a lot of people now seem to think the Tampa cabal is in charge again. They were the ones who supposedly put the bug in the Boss' ear about starting Melky yesterday.

If the Tampa cabal is ruling the roost, will Cashman stay?

2006-10-08 07:35:13
105.   yankz
67 I wasn't referring to you.
2006-10-08 07:35:54
106.   yankz
By 67 I mean 66. 67, you're just insecure. Go away.
2006-10-08 07:37:24
107.   yankz
Majority of Dodger fans, I think the only posters we have problems with are gibsonhobbs88 and ric. The rest of you (at least to me) seem very nice and educated.
2006-10-08 07:58:40
108.   Tarheel
102
He may not be the best 3rd baseman, but he is the best SS in the AL. Jeter should be moved before Arod.
2006-10-08 09:44:35
109.   jayd
Comment Of The Year:

"...could very easily see George spending $300 million next year. Why not! Afterall, money buys championships"

Yeah, right.

The great American expression is "If you're so smart, how come you're not rich?" The Yankees provide us with that timeless legend of wealth pursuing excellence at all costs. It takes guts to put your money where your brains are and endure the derision and delight of the lesser lights who sit back in their ivory towers and moneyball tweed jackets and pretend they can do it for less.

It has made me very sad that "Derek's Team" has lost. Maybe it's time for Sweet Lou and Arod's team.

One thing is for sure, the pursuit continues. Stay toon-ed.

And to the money-buys-championships crowd and the sawks nitwits who are chortling in beantown (small b)67 -- we Yankee fans get our money's worth. Our guys left it out on the field unlike your bunch of quitters who dial it in collect and play for a real estate company. Best of luck with another "Viva El Papi" season...suckers. What's this, year 3 of the 86 year cycle coming up now,he,he,he?

I apologize to all Auburn Tiger fans for my misdirected prayers of yesterday.

2006-10-08 10:03:39
110.   Mike T
"Sign the Japanese fella, drop Moose, sign Zito. Work on getting Hughes up here by July. Pavano - oh, never mind."

I say keep Moose, who actually had a pretty good year all told, and show RJ the door. Randy is finished, and should retire I think. I think he is too old now to bounce back from his injuries.

2006-10-08 12:14:17
111.   fansince77
Does it hurt after watching a team go through 162 games- be there with them every pitch, every ounce of struggle, every triumph-- yeah it hurts...in fact the sudden finality of it all leaves you worse than hungover- it leaves you empty. But it also proves the fragility and difficulty of this glorious game of baseball. We can't blame Torre, Arod, Cashman or anyone for the Yankees NOT winning another World Series. There are too many "X" factors involved in winning it all too ever fairly "expect" it to happen. If we expect it to happpen than we have already set ourselves up for fairly. That is why those moments-those mini-dynasties are so UNBELIEVABLE-- so special! If Mussina held the lead in game two the media and everyone else might be praising all the above mentioned scapegoats- one pitch different at the right time and we are still playing in October- yes it is that fragile. But Moose made so many great pitches, so many times and it didn't happen this time- so what? He's done? Arods done. Torre's done. I am not sure I subscribe to this all or nothing philosophy. I respect the difficulty of the game too much.
2006-10-08 12:15:18
112.   fansince77
Does it hurt after watching a team go through 162 games- be there with them every pitch, every ounce of struggle, every triumph-- yeah it hurts...in fact the sudden finality of it all leaves you worse than hungover- it leaves you empty. But it also proves the fragility and difficulty of this glorious game of baseball. We can't blame Torre, Arod, Cashman or anyone for the Yankees NOT winning another World Series. There are too many "X" factors involved in winning it all too ever fairly "expect" it to happen. If we expect it to happpen than we have already set ourselves up for failure.

That is why those moments-those mini-dynasties are so UNBELIEVABLE-- so special! If Mussina held the lead in game two the media and everyone else might be praising all the above mentioned scapegoats- one pitch different at the right time and we are still playing in October- yes it is that fragile. But Moose made so many great pitches, so many times and it didn't happen this time- so what? He's done? Arods done. Torre's done. I am not sure I subscribe to this all or nothing philosophy. I respect the difficulty of the game too much.

2006-10-08 12:20:44
113.   Stormer Sports
108

Get over it, it's done, it's not going to change, and who is better defensively is debateable, not etched in stone. But beating that dead horse doesn't do anyone any good.

110

This may sound strange coming from me, but we need a little perspective with regards to Cashman and Torre.

Cashman has done a fine job as far as I'm concerned. Pitching would be wonderful, but we have to look to the reality of the situation Cashman was confronted with. We weren't lucky enough to snag a Bonderman, or a Liriano off the scrap heap in some deal that no one saw coming. We just haven't been lucky that way recently. You could blame scouting, but no other team seemed to think many of the current pheonoms were worth keeping in the first place.

We could have kept Vasquez, Contreras, Halsey, Loaiza et al. But even in hindsight, it wouldn't have been a good idea. Major League Baseball has been a black hole of great pitching free agents the past few years, and you cannot blame Brian Cashman for that. That trend continues this year as well. Who is out there, Zito, Schmidt? Both are question marks, Zito is getting older, and Schmidt pitches in the NL and walks guys more often than Holly walks Arthur Spooner.

I was never wedded to the Farnsworth deal but B.J. Ryan didn't want to set up. Cashman did what he could do, load up on hitters, given the total lack of free agent pitchers. We got lucky in the late 1990's with our pitching, we had great pitchers, some home grown, and some bought at the flea market. Cashman cannot sign ace pitchers that do not exist. We have to hope Hughes, this Japanese kid, and some other youngsters set up. We are not going to win with the current rotation, even if Pavano does come back.

I love Lou Piniella, but I can't lay this loss at Torre's feet. Alex waited 166 games to say the right thing, "I just sucked" as did nearly everone else in this last series. Joe cannot hit the ball. And remember fellas, the grass is always greener, and my gut tells me that letting Joe go may be a mistake, but if you have to do it, you do it for Piniella, and no one else! I think O'Neill has it right, they were just going about their business, earning a paycheck, and that hasn't surprised me these past few years, when you have more hired guns, than you do players trying to keep their jobs.

As for Moose, I think he's gone. We cannot pay him 19 million dollars, and unless he wants to negotiate a new deal, he'll have to go. We should get a deal done, but if we don't, the option is simply too expensive.

Matsui isn't going anywhere, neither is Arod, and neither is Abreu. In my opinion, Giambi has to play 1B on a regular basis next season, freeing the clog on the DH spot. We're stuck with what we have for a few years, it's that simple. Pitching is the key, and that is going to very very hard to find.

2006-10-08 12:25:37
114.   Stormer Sports
112

Great post. Thanks. I am one reactionary fool, and I appreciate the perspective.

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