Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
White Out
2005-12-09 05:21
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

The Bronx is covered in snow this morning. As I trooped my way to the subway, a heavy snow was falling and everything was white. But the subways were still running on time (word to the MTA). When I arrived at 50th street and Broadway, things had gotten wetter. Maybe the streets are just hotter in midtown. Regardless, the slush-a-thon was in full-effect. But the snow was still falling--big, fat, raggeded flakes, as if someone up there tore open a pillow and all the feathers were falling out on our heads. Traffic is moving slightly more cautiously than usual, but only slightly. The snow is lining the trees and it all looks lovely.

The winter meetings came to a conlusion in Dallas yesterday. After trading Tony Womack (and $900,000) to the Reds yesterday, the Yankees signed southpaw reliever Mike Myers to a two-year deal believed to be worth $2.4 million (SG, over at the Replacement Level Yankees Blog considers how effective Myers will be). Tyler Kepner suggests the Womack trade demonstrates Brain Cashman's newfound control over things:

The deal symbolized the changes in the Yankees' front-office hierarchy.

Discuss the Postseason General Manager Brian Cashman did not want to sign Womack last December, but the move was forced on him by the Tampa, Fla., headquarters of George Steinbrenner, the principal owner. This December, Cashman, asserting himself in the first winter of his new three-year contract, essentially dispatched with a spare part to add a veteran left-handed reliever.

..."Talking to Brian, it's noticeable that when you ask him, 'What about this, what about that?' you get a much quicker response," said Kevin Towers, the San Diego Padres' general manager. "It doesn't seem like you have to run it up two or three different flagpoles."

Robinson Cano, who visited with cancer patients yesterday at Sloane-Kettering, said he's happy that he's still a Yankee:

"I don't care, I just want to play every day...If it has to be center field, that's OK," Cano said with a smile at a midtown press conference to announce his endorsement deal [with Spalding]. "If they ask me, I'll do it."

Brain MacMillian links to a rumor that would send Sean Henn and Taynon Sturtze to the Phillies for center fielder Jason Michaels, while Steve Lombardi looks at what Bernie Williams' 2006 could be like.

As expected, the Rocket rumors are keeping writers warm as they return east. In his latest column, Bob Klapisch writes:

A.J. Burnett said this week that Pavano is "miserable" pitching in New York, and has told a number of friends - including Burnett, his former teammate in Florida - he wants to be traded. Clemens' presence would make Pavano expendable, assuming someone would actually pay $10 million for an injured sinkerballer with diminished velocity.

If Cashman can pull off a deal for Pavano, he deserves early consideration for Executive of the Year. But the Yankees clearly need a pitching response to the Red Sox and Blue Jays, both of whom are now stronger at the front of the rotation.

Clemens and Randy Johnson are obviously fragile fortysomethings, but The Rocket was arguably the National League's best pitcher in 2005. If healthy, he would create a match for Curt Schilling and Josh Beckett, as well as Roy Halladay and Burnett.

Clemens would give the Yankees a boost in the clubhouse, where he's still popular two years since his departure. The Rocket stays in touch with Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada, who e-mailed him advice about pitching to the White Sox during the World Series.

My hunch is that Clemens is done, and even if he isn't, he won't return to New York. But what do I know? Hope everyone in the tri-state area stays safe and enjoys the snow today.

Comments (61)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2005-12-09 06:00:55
1.   Alex Belth
Speaking of Sloane-Kettering, my brother loves to remember a typical Phil Rizzuto moment involving the hospital that specializes in treating cancer patients. Sometime in the early 80s during a broadcast, the stoic Bill White went out of his way to send his best wishes to Little Timmy such-and-such who was recovering at Sloane-Kettering. Scooter, in his characteristically oblivious and self-absorbed fashion goes, "Oh jeez White, you've got to be pretty sick to be at Sloane-Kettering."

Thanks, Phil. Is it hot in here? Now, how do you gracefully segue out of that one?

2005-12-09 06:17:45
2.   Nick from Washington Heights
God, I miss those channel 11 broadcasts.

Re: Pavano's unhappiness. According to an article I read last week, Cashman spoke to him about his rumored desire to leave the Bronx and he denied it. Maybe Cash is trying to leverage more power in a trade? Or maybe Burnett has old info, or new info?

I like that Michaels rumor a lot.

Snowed in from work! I'll be here all day.

2005-12-09 06:21:14
3.   KJC
// the Yankees signed southpaw reliever Mike Myers to a two-year deal //

Arg. I really liked him & am sad to see him (a) leave the Sox and (b) join the Yanks. (Ortiz coming up late in the game? Here comes Myers...) I like how the Daily News went back & dug up a picture of Myers when he was on the Mariners rather than use a recent Sox pic...

2005-12-09 06:28:52
4.   wsporter
Um Alex, don't have to be pretty sick to be at Sloan-Kettering?
2005-12-09 06:31:49
5.   wsporter
Sorry Dude I meant, "Doesn't one have to be pretty sick ...."
2005-12-09 06:43:15
6.   jonm
I hope that thy do get rid of "league average" Pavano. I've developed a visceral disliking to that guy. He gets a four year contract at $10 million per year, pitches inconsistently, gets hurt, lets the team down, and he has the gall to tell others that he is "miserable" in New York.

He strikes me as a self-absorbed, petty jerk. Apparently, he fired his agent because he didn't get $40 million and instead got $39.5 million.

2005-12-09 07:16:03
7.   Dimelo
For once in the last 4 years, I am glad that the Yankees aren't going after big name players. If the Yanks get Michaels/Bradley or some other decent CF option then I think the Yanks are set. They have the right role players in the right spots, the Yanks had a ton of players that they couldn't play because they sucked so bad. It's a miracle they even made the playoffs.
2005-12-09 07:20:40
8.   Simone
What exactly is there for Pavano to be miserable about? He barely pitched before being injured. Also why is he going around telling people that he is unhappy and wants to be traded. He better just suck it up and pitch well because at this point his trade value can't be much.
2005-12-09 07:43:58
9.   JohnnyC
Speaking of GMs who have no autonomy. Gentlemen of the jury, I give you...Kevin Towers. If we think Cashman couldn't possibly have approved the Womack signing, what are we to think of Towers trading Mark Loretta to Boston for career back-up Doug Mirabelli? Do you suppose the "Tampa" segment of the Padres' hierarchy might be Sandy Alderson via Larry Lucchino? And, supposedly, Towers and Cashman are good friends. Nice friend, eh?
2005-12-09 07:57:01
10.   wsporter
I sure like the way Cashman is going about things. He's acting like he plans on being here for a long time, no panicky flailing around at every twist who's holding a bat. Nice calm measured steps and talk. I believe it was that great home-spun Italian-American philosopher Phil Rizzuto who remarked that "the race does not always go to the swift nor the battle to the strong, but the division will definitely go to the team with the best 11 man staff, Cora".
2005-12-09 07:59:08
11.   Upperdeck
I remember earlier in the year Pavano was recruiting AJ to come pitch in NY. Now he's miserable and wants out? Doesn't make sense.
2005-12-09 08:08:17
12.   bp1
I'm loving these references to the Scooter broadcasts. I used to go to bed with the Scooter, Messer, and White on the radio when I was a kid. To me, those will always be the Golden Age of Yankee Radio.


2005-12-09 08:08:18
13.   Nick from Washington Heights
JohnnyC, exactly. Anyone wonder if there might be a just a little collusion going on? How do the Padres justify that trade? How do the Braves justify sending BP's #1 rated prospect to the Sox for an overpaid wildly unpopular player? The Marlins send Beckett, Lowell (and have to add Mota) for three prospects who are not even the highest rated in the Boston system. And then the Marlins have the nerve to ask for Wang and Cano in a trade for Pierre. What the Fu..?
2005-12-09 08:17:02
14.   sabernar
Nick, I totally agree. There is definately something fishy going on. How can the Sox make all these trades? They're giving away spare parts, backups, and overpaid scrubs and getting back above-average, full-time players. WTF?
2005-12-09 08:31:57
15.   standuptriple
Sometimes I wish I could get a snow-day excuse. Little chance of that out in CA.
I actually like the Myers signing. It just adds to the pen. That's one of the first things I noticed about the CWS pre-2005 season. You can never have too many arms in late August.
I'm sick of hearing about Pavano. When he gives us a solid month of starts then he can open his trap. Until then you're the equivalent of Anna Benson sans-rack.
Apparently Cash was on XM yesterday. I didn't hear it live, but the gist is that Pavano isn't going anywhere. I don't see anybody wow-ing the Yanks enough to take him off our hands.
I'm convinced Cash and Towers are buddies. KT has sent us some sweet deals in the past and I'm sure he gets more than a fruit basket from the Yanks every Christmas.
This might come out the wrong way, but since Rocket's mom is no longer around I see it more likely that he'd make a return to the Bronx. I've had the feeling that he said he was retiring so he could pitch for USA in the Olympics. Whoops. Team USA *&#% the bed. Now he gets his chance to fullfill his patriotic dreams (admirably IMO) and can then display his talents against the best of the best. Sorry, I'm a little long-winded today.
2005-12-09 08:34:19
16.   wsporter
Bp1: I think everybody who was there misses it a little. When the Scooter would make the usually stoic Bill White crack up and unable to talk for thirty or forty seconds life was good. It was great following Scooter from the TV to the Radio broadcast. Things seemed a lot friendlier, simpler and a whole lot less mechanical. They were in many ways the face of the Yankees and are a big part of my memories. I can still taste the canolies.
2005-12-09 08:53:04
17.   tommyl
To add a Rizzuto story, I actually ended up going to high school with his grandaughter. At my graduation I remember my uncle coming up to me, and I assumed he was going to offer me congratulations and all. Instead he said, "This is the greatest day ever! I just met Phil Rizzuto!"

Nice to know where my family's priorities are, eh? :)

2005-12-09 09:05:23
18.   Nick from Washington Heights
tommy, I went to college with his granddaughter. Actually, I only discovered his granddaughter was going to my school when I was walking around campus one day and I passed this old guy shuffling by with a young woman. There he was. The Scooter. I gave him a nod and he smiled back. Seemed like such a nice gentle guy.
2005-12-09 09:28:07
19.   vockins
The Loretta trade doesn't seem like a big deal to me. Loretta had a great 2004, but his 2005 was not so good, even before he sprained his thumb. Maybe the smaple size is too small, but it seemed to me Graffanino did a pretty fine job after July. Loretta doesn't appear like an upgrade.

If the Sox work something out for the recently disgruntled Tejada - that would be unfortunate, unless Manny went in exchange. It's unlikely, sure, but Tejada/Ortiz/Manny Red Sox team would be a nightmare.

2005-12-09 09:36:16
20.   Nick from Washington Heights
Doug Mirabelli (who is older than Loretta) is a career .241 hitter with an OBP of.328. He's also a career back-up. Loretta is 1 season removed from an all-star year. His best seasons have occurred after the age of 30. In other words, he's been peaking in his early 30's. How is that trade even remotely fair?
2005-12-09 09:36:23
21.   Marcus
Here I go stoking the "Red Sox trade collusion" fires, but Tejada wants out of Baltimore:

Interesting timing. The Braves are desparate for a new SS, resorting to trading their positional prospect for Edgar Renteria (!?!?!?), and they have a long track record of winning. But Tejada waits until the day after that Renteria trade is made to announce his desire to leave. What team needs a new SS now?

Now, obviously it would be crazy for Baltimore to trade their franchise player to a team in their division, but if they got a certain slugging LFer in return, plus maybe some cash or prospects, maybe they'd be stupid enough to do it.

2005-12-09 09:38:39
22.   unpopster
To follow up on my Red Sox 26-headed-Front Office rant from yesterday, the following little tidbit showed up in this morning:

"A source told the Boston Herald another team that was interested in Andy Marte turned away after the Braves acknowledged the player had a tear in the ulnar collateral ligament of an elbow."

This offseason could be a huge success for the Red Sox (if Beckett, Mota and Arte are actually healthy) or a catastrophy.

Makes me appreciate Cashman more and more each day.

BTW, Red Sox Nation may be going crazy over a Miggy-Manny trade...but it AIN'T HAPPENING! No way the Sox trade Manny to another AL East team so that he faces/burns them 16 times in 2006. If Manny is moving, it'll either be to the NL or the AL West.

Lastly, so Tejada is whining about staying in Baltimore, Soriano is whining about moving to the outfield, and Manny simply whines, whines, whines. Makes me REALLY appreciate the guys on the Yanks. Even Shef, the supposed clubhouse cancer, hasn't said a peep since opening day 2004.

2005-12-09 09:38:59
23.   Rob Gee
As far as I'm concerned Klapish is out of his mind. If folks are signing Kenny Rogers to 16mil/2 years and Burnett to 55mil/ 5 years (not to metion Todd f'in Jones), Pavano easily falls into the same neighborhood esp. with a little cash - 2 or 3 mil/year brings Pavano down to 7 or 8mil/year. That's his value right now.

But, and a big BUT, you can only explain away Pavano's season as "hurt/switch to AL" NOW. If we're in June, and he's at 8-7 with a 4.50 ERA, that starts to look a lot like the pitcher he is.

The time is NOW. Pavano has as much trade value as Rentaria. And the Sox didn't do half bad there. In fact, they did great (which explains the puke that is consistently bubbling into my mouth). Ship CP out and bring daddy a CF, preferably one that's going to do a Latrell Sprewell impression for two or three years - crazy and talented that fans will love. Unfortunately, they missed the Tiger (and Granderson) boat.

2005-12-09 09:47:07
24.   Nick from Washington Heights
Rob Gee, I'm with you on this one buddy. In fact, I'm praying that Roger returns to the Yanks for a one year big contract because that will force Cash's hand. He'll have to move a starter in only to make room for Clemens. Even without the signing, I still want Pavano moved. But Cashman (who might be bluffing) insists that Carl is staying put.

Here's what I'd do in order of preference:
to Philly for Michaels or Rowand and Cole Hamels (assuming the Phils would do that).
to Detroit for Granderson and that pitching prospect whose name starts with a "Z" (hey, forgive me. I don't run the team)
to Seattle for Jeremy Reed and a pitcher (maybe Meche)

2005-12-09 10:03:44
25.   vockins
I'm not saying the Loretta/Mirabelli trade is fair, I'm just saying that Loretta doesn't seem like an improvement over what the Sox had at the position last year.

I also think it's doubtful that Loretta will approach his All Star numbers again. I think his numbers will certainly improve by virtue of moving to Fenway from Petco, but not in a way that's going to substantially change the offensive production of the team.

And I think Mirabelli was more valuble to the Sox as Wakefield's catcher than he was as a bat. The Red Sox fans in the audience can correct me if I am wrong, but I think Varitek can't catch Wakefield to save his life.

So did the Sox definitvely improve with that unfair trade? Eh, in my opinion.

2005-12-09 10:08:05
26.   Rob Gee
Thanks Nick for the love.

Unfortunately, the Tigers (and Granderson) are out. They just dropped 27mil for two years of Kenny the Gambler and T. Jones. Exhibit A for why paitience is NOT a virtue.

The other options seem reasonable but, as mentioned by Alex, I think Michaels can be had for something lesser (Henn and Sturtze), and I'm not convinced that either him or Reed is a significant upgrade over Bubba - but maybe for a passable platoon/flexibility.

Crazy Uncle Milton (Sprewell part deux including intial media backlash then fan love) is still available and, according to rumors, at the price of Todd Walker. Call me crazy but Pavano, right NOW, is much more valuable than Todd Walker.

2005-12-09 10:13:14
27.   ChuckM
Hamels is a mess with back problems. Mike Carminati has a whole conspiracy theory about the Selig/Henry/red Sox connection over at Mike's Baseball Rants...
2005-12-09 10:18:41
28.   Nick from Washington Heights
Vockins, the thing is that the Sox didn't have Mueller or Grafannino anymore, so they were faced with a hole at 2b. If they were to keep either of those guys, they would have been forced into a two to three year deal with a player blocking the path for Dustin Pedroia. I actually think that Loretta is an upgrade over Mueller and Graf, but that's almost besides the point. Loretta is a good stop-gap option whose contract is done in 1 year. Knowing the Sox's situation, you'd think the Padres could have at least received a prospect in the deal. I know it's a $2 million salary dump, but the Padres were given home-town discounts in the Hoffman and Giles deals. How much money did they need to save?
2005-12-09 10:22:59
29.   wsporter
Maybe we could find a "horse whisperer" to calm CP down. See if we can get 200+ innings and a sub 4.00 era and a WHIP under 1.2. Well I can dream, can't I?

What could we get back for CP right now? Any ideas?
If he looks good in the spring could we get a really big fish for him? I'm thinking maybe a freaky athletic guy who's apparently suffering the agonies of cultural displacement in Seattle? A health CP plus top end prospects? Spring time? Maybe?

2005-12-09 10:35:12
30.   vockins
You make some good points, Nick. The pods could have gotten more, I think. I just don't think the Sox traded the right guy.

Maybe there's another Wakefield catcher in the wings or maybe I've completely invented that Varitek can't catch him. But a google search for "Wakefield Varitek passed ball" is confirming my suspicions. Not the most reliable source for information about that combination, but if anyone's got any insight, I'd like to read it.

2005-12-09 10:40:59
31.   Rob Gee
Sorry sport, I only see Pavano's value going down. He's league average and going on 30 - he's not getting better. Now, league avg. would be good, esp. with our offense, except for the fact that we already have more than enough pitchers that fall in there. And they seem much easier to find, with a few Darrell May and Alex Graman experiments aside.

Could Pavano bring a legit CF? Absolutely!

Have I mentioned Milton Bradley? We probably would even have to give too much cash there.

Granderson WOULD have worked nicely.

What about Brady Clark in MIL? Old but serviceble. Obviously we'd want more back.

Mark Kotsay?

Preston Wilson?

Dave Roberts?

Ryan Church?

Chris Duffy?

As you can see the list gets thin and more uncertain after MIL-ton.

The time is NOW. Springtime means rosters and budgets are set. Pull the f'in trigger Cash.

2005-12-09 10:47:37
32.   Simone
What about DePaula and a PTBNL for Bradley?
2005-12-09 11:03:14
33.   Rob Gee
Another fun comparison (last three years):

Player A:
.329 BA; .372 OBP; .442 SLG

Player B:
.293 BA; 0.378 OBP; .470 SLG

Different positions, but both well above-average for respective.

A = Ichiro, 32yo, 13mil/year
B = Milton, 28yo, 3mil/year

That is value friends.

Uh, oh, I feel the tonic working its effects again.

2005-12-09 11:05:49
34.   standuptriple
Anybody have Cashman's ear? What about Pavano for Willy Taveras? Word is that HOU loves Burke (I agree) and they apparently love ex-Yankee SP down there, we'd foot a chuck of the bill, they get a below-market replacement for Rocket and Pav gets back in the NL. See there, I just solved the whole thing. Willy in the 9 hole would make me happy too.
2005-12-09 11:09:56
35.   Rob Gee
Sorry, Simone, the Dodgers are not stupid though the Furcal contract would suggest otherwise.

We will need to send a real chip. Pavano has an upside, just like Rentaria, I just don't think it makes as much difference to our team as a full-time legit CF. I suppose you could try to get a Wright and Henn by them, but I don't see them biting. Bradley is a valuable commodity in this market because there are so few players like him - young, cheap, and talented.

Not sure of the stories with Chris Duffy and Ryan Church, but the numbers look good from afar.

2005-12-09 11:14:41
36.   wsporter
Rob, maybe I'm grasping at straws because I ….just …can't…….Uncle…Milty (yes it seems to me that you may have mentioned him before). The Mets are looking for a starter. They're not going to get Zito or Zazquez, I think Manny, to paraphrase a great Beantown intellectual, "aint goin to no Mets" maybe they'd could do a Milledge - CP deal. What the hell, it's a snow day.
2005-12-09 11:17:24
37.   Rob Gee
You know, I'd be okay with Tavaras but I don't think they'd trade him now. It's worth a shot though. But realize he has shown no pop in in his bat, not even in the minors. But he's 24. If it develops he's legit. If it doesn't, he's Womackian (last year .666 OPS).
2005-12-09 11:21:37
38.   ChuckM
Rob Gee,

You keep leaving out the part of the quation where you mention that Bradley is insane. There is a reason he comes cheap...

2005-12-09 11:46:49
39.   standuptriple
On the bright side, he (Crazy MB) and Sabathia have kissed and made up. Maybe he's not totally opposed to changing his persona.
2005-12-09 12:06:29
40.   Zack
Yeah, nothing like a clubhouse of Sheff, Johnson, Bradley, Farnsworth, a grumpy Pavano, Moose..Hell we should bring back Brown just to complement our "worst clubhouse to be around" moniker...
2005-12-09 12:08:08
41.   Rob Gee
Chuck-D - you're bringing all da noise -

Do I really need to mention that? Of course he's insane, so is Sprewell. I think Spree's a very apt comparison and forshadows both the media backlash and the eventual fan love.

You do all remember that, right? And it didn't end great, but it was fun while it lasted.

And we don't have as crazy a clubhouse as those Knicks.

And worst case, he's on a one-year contract.

For historical reminders, see:



And of course, Loopy had his say:


2005-12-09 12:13:52
42.   wsporter
Sorry to interupt the fun with Milton B. but I came across another Rizzuto:

While broadcasting a Yankee game one day, Phil Rizzuto was informed that Pope Paul VI had just died. "Well," he commented on the air, "that kind of puts the damper on even a Yankee win."

Found this at some stupid net site. I think I remember a long interval of dead air while Fran Healy gave Bill White mouth to mouth.

2005-12-09 12:16:44
43.   Rob Gee

Yup, you've got me...with Unit and Farns has the rep.

But -

Sheff is a a big PUSSYcat these days.
Moose, I've never heard trouble about.
And hopefully this deal will send CP on his way.

The moniker you cite I've never heard applied to the recent clubhouse. Crazy Uncle Milton won't change that.

If we're making up stuff to keep away a legit CF, then it's even more reason for Cash to: Pull the f'in trigger!

2005-12-09 12:18:53
44.   Rob Gee
BTW: I really miss Scooter too - he made me really happy even though the team stunk. Though I remember my Dad getting mad at his stupidity. Tough call there - my Dad thought everyone was stupid and I was too young to actually have an opinion.
2005-12-09 12:57:48
45.   wsporter
What a nice way to put that, I think he made a lot of people happy, me included.
2005-12-09 13:12:13
46.   walein
When you were a kid and your team stunk...there was nothing like actually believing that Scooter could read off peoples' birthdays and it might act as a voodoo charm to get the Yankees to rally.
Also, how trippy were those money store adds? It was like something out of a Cronenberg movie.
Ya gotta love Phil!
2005-12-09 13:28:52
47.   vockins
My father used to say, "Phil Rizzuto has no chance of getting into the HoF until his insane Money Store ads go off the air." Dad may have been right about that one.
2005-12-09 13:31:22
48.   singledd
"I'm loving these references to the Scooter broadcasts. I used to go to bed with the Scooter, Messer, and White on the radio when I was a kid. To me, those will always be the Golden Age of Yankee Radio."

I remember those days well. It may be encroaching old age along with LSD flashbacks, but I seem to remember a pretty good teams of Rizzuto, Coleman and J. Garagiola. Let me tell ya, when Rizzuto is the SECOND funniest guy, you got some team. Anyone else remember those 3?

2005-12-09 15:16:11
49.   brockdc
To think what could have been had J.J. Putz been playing when Rizzuto was still in the broadcast booth. A boy can dream.
2005-12-09 17:19:14
50.   Howie
Another Scooter memory: Meat Loaf was in the booth and they were talking about "Paradise by the Dashboard Light." Scooter had no idea what the song was about, and he said all the nuns were mad at him after the song came out. Also, there was someone in the crowd that looked like Meatloaf, and Scooter said there's your cousin, "Pot Roast".
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2005-12-09 18:12:30
51.   wsporter

Those were the late 60's around 66 or 67 I think maybe 68. I used to have a little radio I'd listen to. My Grandfather would call and we'd listen to the game together over the phone. Half the time when something funny would happen I'd be laughing at him laughing. I thought Jerry Coleman's real name was "Huckleberry" like Huckleberry Hound. We sucked and I didn't even know it. It was just great.

2005-12-09 18:14:40
52.   Rich
I used to laugh when White and others used make fun of Scooter's fear of lightening, until Rizzuto told a story about watching a player get struck and killed by lightening when he was playing in the minor leagues.
2005-12-09 18:20:41
53.   Dimelo
Anyone read the comment below from Jayson Stark calling the Yankees losers for their reluctance to do anything "big" at the winter meetings?
Yankees (Big Apple Division): Brian Cashman's biggest acquisition at these meetings was a cranberry muffin. No truth to the rumor he balked at adding a croissant when the cash-register attendant asked for Chien-Ming Wang in return. Nevertheless, the Yankees have big holes in center field and their bullpen, and their rotation is as shaky as it's been in years. But the big news, if you've read the New York papers over the last two weeks, is that you might have thought the Mets were the only team in town. We actually admire their restraint in many ways. But what's going on here? It feels like the Mets are the Yankees, and the Yankees are the Mets. And that's a feeling that doesn't compute.
2005-12-09 18:36:18
54.   Rich
Stark, like virtually every other person who writes for ESPN, is a joke.

Cashman is rightly being patient rather than allowing himself to be fleeced. It's the right thing to do.

2005-12-09 19:04:23
55.   Dimelo
For the Yankees, your damned if you do - damned if you don't. They get criticized if they sign a bunch of free agents and if they don't then they still get criticized. Oh well...
2005-12-09 19:45:21
56.   wsporter

Boy it can be frustrating. I think its been like this since 1977. Many scribes have found a formula that works for them. If they have no reason to think its broken why would they bother to fix it? Not all these folks are practitioners of formulaic damnation though. Guys like Tim Kurkjian for example are terrific, they work hard, follow stories and think for themselves. They don't write like their going to miss a meal if they say the wrong thing. Remember the 95 to 2001 era? Both Gammons and Stark were the first ones to stand up and say the Yankees were doing things the right way in combining financial muscle and smarts to build a dynasty. We've received a lot of criticism over the last couple of years, some of it intelligent, constructive and deserved. Much of it has been of the cut and paste formulaic variety. The great thing about the internet is we have the ability to avoid that crap at the click of a button.

I thought Stark's comment about the Yankees was weakened by his comment that "(w)e actually admire their restraint in many ways." What ways? If you do why are they losers? I think its just poor writing from a good writer. His point was they made no important moves. Ok so they didn't. Don't confuse the issue by including a stupid throw away line. Given the volume Mr. Stark puts out I can give him a pass. I know I couldn't do a better job and I doubt I could do as well.

2005-12-09 20:13:38
57.   Dimag
I'm sorry to hear from A.J. Burnett that his flyball inducing buddy is unhappy.In a pitchers park Burnett has a lifetime 49-50 record yet he gets 5 years. If The Yankees had made the deal oh what crying there would be. BTW Alex-great essay in the Hardball Times annual.
2005-12-10 11:40:11
58.   Simone
I just rolled my eyes at Stark's negative comments about the Yankees. I just hope that Cashman stays patient because the Yankees' ideal centerfielder may have to found the next off season when Andruw Jones and Torii Hunter become free agents.

After years of naivete, I now totally believe in conspiracies where corporate money and personal relationships intersect.

2005-12-10 15:01:53
59.   yankz
Anyone else think Pavano + cash for Reed + bullpen arm or catching prospect is a pretty damn good deal? With a surplus of starters, why not use your most tradeable one to fill a glaring need?

And then if they pull off the Michaels trade...a solid defensive outfield. OK, I'll quit dreaming.

2005-12-10 15:30:42
60.   Nick from Washington Heights
yankz, I do. I'm hoping Cashman's insistence that he's sticking with Pavano is just posturing to drive the price up. However, if he's traded I'd think we should pick up another starter off the market. How about Washburn? or, better yer, Roger?
2005-12-10 21:16:23
61.   Zack
Murray Chass has been particularly annoying this offseason. His latest article is all about how the Yankees were foolish to pass up on Pierre and should have traded for him, that what he lacks in walks he makes up in infield hits. I kid you not. The Times' sports section was never great, but they keep getting worse and worse, especially in relation to the Yanks...Ugh...

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