Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
I'll Murdalize Ya...
2006-05-19 06:41
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

Vicente Padilla and the Texas bullpen out-pitched Jaret Wright and the Yankee pen, as the Rangers toppled the increasingly banged-up Bombers 6-2 on an overcast afternoon in the Bronx. Both starting pitchers were excellent, but some poor fielding and lousy relief did the home team in. After starting the season impressively in the field, the Yanks have been kicking the ball around more than somewhat of late.

The funniest moment in the game came in the seventh inning. The Rangers had taken a 4-0 lead in the top half of the inning and Padilla had runners on second and third with two men out when Jorge Posada pinch-hit. Padilla looks like a bad-guy extra in a Roger Corman biker movie, and it was hilarious to see how Posada tried to mess with his head. With the count 1-1, Padilla threw a late breaking slider over the outside part of the plate. It was called a strike though it looked way outside. The next pitch, a high fastball, looked like strike three but was called a ball. Okay, fine. They were even. Then Posada stepped out. Padilla had been taking a long time between pitches all afternoon, so now he and Posada are locked in a duel of stubborness.

Posada, who is more stubborn than a mule, asked the umpire for a new ball. Padilla contempuously rolled the ball back towards the plate, almost directly at Posada. He then missed for ball three. Next, without holding his hand out, Posada called time after another long stare-down with Padilla. He was granted time, but not before Padilla went into his wind up and delivered a breaking ball that looked to be a strike on the outside corner. No matter, the pitch didn't count. Next pitch? Check swing, ball four and Posada had his walk.

Showalter sprung out of the dugout and offered his characteristically comic, terse signal to the pen. Padilla was furious on the mound, red-faced, smoke coming out of his ears, like some poor schnook that Bugs Bunny had just worked over. He left the mound with the lead, but when Johnny Damon dumped a two-run single into left, you could see Padilla in the dugout with some kind of scowl on his mug.

That was as close as the Yanks would get, but it just cracked me up how Posada drove this guy from the game in a fit of frustration. Padilla pitched a really nice game too.

Comments (56)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-05-19 07:33:32
1.   C2Coke
Alex, I really enjoy reading different styles of game summaries from you and Cliff. Great stuff, Thanks.

On a side note, we all know MLB.TV is not doing the best job this year but there is a promotion right now. I don't want to advertise for them or anything so if you are interested to watch the banged-up bombers for the next two months, the deal is valid until Monday 5/22 noon time.

2006-05-19 07:55:52
2.   Rob Gee
Mendoza starts again today for the Clippers.

Anyone know the deal? Are they simply trying to build/test his arm strength to have him come up as quickly as possible? Or are they looking at him as a possible starter?

2006-05-19 08:06:39
3.   yankaholic

the tri-state fans cant watch NY games still right??

2006-05-19 08:29:33
4.   C2Coke
3 You mean for blackout retrictions?
2006-05-19 08:54:37
5.   Cliff Corcoran
2 Curious. Mendoza's stints in the rotation always seemed to end with an injury. Seeing as he's coming off major surgery, it would seem almost Terrence-Long-level foolish to try to make him a starter now. Let's hope they're just stretching him out.
2006-05-19 08:55:45
6.   Start Spreading the News
4 Yes, it is really annoying that we can't get the games via MLB if we live in the region. Yet they advertise on local stations all the time. What is up with that?
2006-05-19 08:55:47
7.   yankaholic

YES, blackout restrictions..

2006-05-19 08:57:40
8.   yankaholic
"Start Spreading" they do.. do the * thing when they say "blk out res apply"..

What i was asking "C2C" was does this promotion cancel that blkout ..

2006-05-19 09:05:24
9.   Cliff Corcoran
It's a meaningless small sample illustrated with meaningless stats (catchers ERA is bunk), but it's interesting to read over on Dodger Thoughts how the Dodgers and their fans are ready to spit the bit on Dioner Navarro despite the fact that he's spent a third of the season on the DL:

And since I'm pulling a catching prospect conversation out of nowhere, check the current numbers on Tampa catcher P.J. Pilittere (the mi link on the sidebar). He was a college player who didn't hit much in his first two seasons, so he's old for his league and still in A-ball. It's also a tiny sample, but it's a sign of life from within.

More on Pilittere from In George We Trust here:

2006-05-19 09:18:33
10.   Rob Gee
9 I saw that on Navarro and Pilittere. I'm hoping the Yanks make a move for Navarro if he gets sent down. I can't imagine the Dodgers trying to keep both.

Pilittere was more interesting to me. But his age and level were alarming. Does High-A rank higher or lower than college ball? If the numbers hold up, any chance he sniff Trenton this year?

2006-05-19 09:25:02
11.   jayd
2and 5 ...And you never will know because it would be strategically foolish to let the world know you are desperate to find X. Let them think whatever you need is all part of several options.

The good news is that the Yanks are rich with pitching options. I'm just as befuddled about why Scott Erickson but sanguine enough to know that we have Kerrigan et. al. who can assess and work with whomever.

What Erickson has done in the recent past, is, for a ballplayer anyways, not as germane as knowing that he has been successful. Whoever is letting the little experiment happen seems to think the genie is back in the bottle. If they are wrong, well a couple games down the drain.

More games down the drain for someone like RJ who gets a longer pass to get back on track, say 16 mill worth of passes (or whatever the number is).

Is there any kind of precedent for the Pavano situation. How long do you get to play catch? There were stories at the beginning of spring training that Carl was unhappy and wanted out from NY, does anyone see something more sinister here?

I never see anything about Carl's happiness quotient -- you know looking forward to coming back, wanting to join the team, etc. etc. I have great sympathy for the guy but wonder whether he might be a spoiled nitwit and this is some kind of orchestrated thing on his part -- taking advantage of things and making them out to be much worse than they actually are.

We know what motivates a moose and an rj, the rest of these guys are always question marks in my book. Once you get the big salary, why not kick back for the next couple of years -- if you get a great year in your last year of contract, you'll always be getting market value.

2006-05-19 09:31:48
12.   Rob Gee
11 A few games down the drain could make the difference between winning the division and missing the playoffs. Last night a 2-0 game in the 7th was winnable. Unfortunately, Scott Erikson made that possibility moot.

There's also a big difference between Erickson and Unit and the number of chances. One is a surefire HOF who had a very good year in 2005 and started strong in 2006. The other hasn't pitched regularly in the majors since 2002. The leashes are not based on the dollars.

2006-05-19 09:46:49
13.   Jon Weisman
9 I'd personally like to see the Dodgers keep both Martin and Navarro, Cliff. Certainly, there's a trade offer out there somewhere that would knock me out, but I really like the depth. If Martin were to get hurt after a Navarro trade, the Dodgers would be sunk back there.

I'm curious to see how Navarro will respond to the challenge that Martin has given him. Will Navarro step up his game defensively? He seems to have the potential to do so - just doesn't always do it.

2006-05-19 09:55:13
14.   Rob Gee
13 Jon, but can you see that going on for next year too? Without the DH it's tough to justify two legit backstops with neither getting significant playing time. Seems they'll have to choose wisely at some point otherwise they could end up wasting significant value on one or both.
2006-05-19 09:59:41
15.   Jon Weisman
I suppose. I sort of like the idea of having two qualified catchers, allowing both to stay fresh - whether they start 81 games a piece or 120/42, but I realize that's a luxury. But right now, I'm not sure it's prudent to cut loose Navarro when Martin has only got 11 games of experience. As much as I like Martin, I just want to see more of him. And I think that Navarro might be undervalued right now - especially if you try to trade him the moment he's been beaten out of a job.
2006-05-19 10:00:26
16.   Cliff Corcoran
14 In a smart organization, it's not hard to justify as long as they're both pre-arbitration. Unless Coletti can get a killer deal for one of the, why not keep 'em both around as Jon says. If they deal one and something happens to the other (injury or performance collapse) they're where the Yankees would be if Jorge got hurt/old, which is why we're having this discussion in the first place.
2006-05-19 10:04:55
17.   standuptriple
8 It's apparently not available on Extra Innings either. That's garbage. Why is it that more Yanks games are left off the supposedly "every game" package? I get to listen to the fingernails on the chalkboard (aka Fox) tomorrow and the Joe Morgan innane chatter on Sunday. Yay!
2006-05-19 10:16:52
18.   Rob Gee
15 You're absolutely right - two legit catchers allowing them both to stay fresh - sigh...

Certainly a nice luxury to have, esp. knowing the end of seasons trends for most C's.

16 Good point on the pre-arbitration bit. It won't cost the Dodgers alot. My question is more: Do you need some bare minimum as a player to maintain productivity? My guess is it depends on the player, but with two young guys a 120-40 split could hurt the one left out. And any thing close to 81-81 may hurt the development of both. At least in the AL, they could also split time at DH - sigh - Jorge as DH, now there's a nice fantasy.

Who knows though - certainly a nice place to be if you're Brooklyn.

2006-05-19 10:17:09
19.   Marcus
Here's a good laugh from

"The Cubs have signed Tony Womack to a minor league contract.
Womack will be assigned to Triple-A Iowa. He hit .307 last season for St. Louis, but struggled in nine games with Cincinnati this season. May. 19 - 9:38 am et"

I guess the guys at rotoworld want to forget Tony Womack's 2005 season as much as we Yankee fans do.

2006-05-19 10:18:52
20.   rbj
I'm curious as to why people are still high on Navarro? There is baseball logic to trading a young blue chip for an established stud (Navarro for RJ) but now it seems that both Arizona and the Dodgers have soured on him. So was Dioner ever really any good? And by good I mean to be a major league average catcher.
2006-05-19 10:28:41
21.   markp
Erickson has been putrid since 2000. His ERA+ over that time are 60, 79, 72, and 67. He also missed all of 2001 and 2003. Last year he had a 6.02 ERA in Dodger stadium. That's like hitting 200 with no power in Coors field.
Nor was he really doing much in AAA. To bring him into a close, winnable game was absurd-almost as absurd as bringing him up in the first place.
2006-05-19 10:28:54
22.   Shaun P
17 It does suck. Its drives me crazy that Extra Innings does not have every feed for every game. There's no reason for them not to, other than out of date blackout restrictions that ought to be removed.

That said, EI doesn't have the game tonight because EI only carries games that are broadcast on RSNs, not on local broadcast stations. I'm not sure why this is, but this is also stupid. Usually if the home team is on local TV, and the road team is on their RSN, EI will use the road feed.

That doesn't apply tonight because both teams are on their respective local networks (WWOR, WPIX) - so no game.

The worst part - tomorrow is a FOX game, and Sunday is an ESPN game. No EI all weekend - we get #%(&#@$%@$)! FOX tomorrow and then Joe Morgan on Sunday. Grrr.......

2006-05-19 10:37:49
23.   profound
I can deal with any announcers, I just mute it and use the radio.

The problem is the HD issue. I got a HD tv purely for the Yankees (altho I couldnt recommend it more) and any game that on ESPN or FOX seems to get blacked out for me. (COMCAST NJ.)

If they black out Channel 9 tonight, its fine wiht me, because 9 has no HD EVER. If 11 has HD, ill be thrilled to listen to Mr. Mccarver as long as I get my HD.

Love readin your articles and posts guys, this is now a daily stop for me. Keep up the good work.

2006-05-19 10:42:46
24.   fgasparini
Piling into the Cashman debate...

I've generally been on his side, though it's often hard to know what decisions were his and which someone else's...but he didn't have to call up Erickson. That's just silly. The only REASONABLE explanation could go, "Joe won't use Colter Bean. He'll just burn through the better arms in the pen. If I bring up a vet, it will at least save stress on Mo, Farns, Proctor, etc." But if Cash really has to out-think his own manager like that...then he does not have the total control over baseball decisions he demanded.

Plus, Occam's razor applies. The simplest explanation is most often correct. In this case, it's that Cashman isn't that great a GM.

2006-05-19 10:44:19
25.   fgasparini
Or, maybe, Cash figured Erickson could soak up garbage time innings, and Torre surprised Cash by using Scott in a leverage situation. But if that's what happened, I would say that shouldn't surprise Cashman.
2006-05-19 10:46:20
26.   rbj
Radio doesn't work for me, as I'm a few hundred miles away. Does the Yankees' radio station (don't even know what it is anymore) have an internet feed? I'm not spending more bucks for the mlb audio feed.
2006-05-19 10:48:55
27.   BobbyBaseBall
26 Unfortunatly, the only internet radio feeds are through MLB. I tried finding one for those pesky day games while I'm at the office, but I had no such luck.

The only other option would be to sign up for XM, but they don't have the internet feed for MLB.

2006-05-19 10:51:11
28.   yankaholic

we yanks on WCBS Radio, but they dont telecast game commentary on the internet.. i guess copyright may interfere with mlb audio..

They WANT the MONEY..

2006-05-19 10:51:14
29.   yankaholic

we get yanks on WCBS Radio, but they dont telecast game commentary on the internet.. i guess copyright may interfere with mlb audio..

They WANT the MONEY..

2006-05-19 10:53:09
30.   Rob Gee
20 He's a 22 yo switch hitting C with power and patience. And Arizona didn't sour on him - it was a three way trade between the Yanks, Dodgers, and Snakes. He landed in LA.

Last year hitting half his games in a pitching friendly home park he did this (176 AB's):

.273 .354 .375 .729

Yup, not amazing, but certainly passing for a 21 yo. As a 19 yo in Trenton he did this (208 AB's):

.341 .388 .471 .859

His ML ceiling is probably somewhere around there. In between (2004 & 2005) he got bounced around alot - Trenton, Columbus, Las Vegas, LA - and yet all the numbers were more than adequate for a 20-21 yo switch-hitting C.

This year, before getting injured (75 AB's):

.280 .372 .387 .759

Compare Kelly Stinnett (25 AB's):

.200 .231 .280 .511

Career: .238 .319 .389 .708


I'll take the switch-hitting 22 yo C, thanks.

2006-05-19 10:54:49
31.   3 tacos de asada por favor

From what I've seen & this is JMO, Navarro shows great game calling ability good arm, BUT his foot work is quetionable, he tends to fall asleep back there (check out how many passed balls he has) Martin is simply out working him. Plus Martin is a home grown player.

2006-05-19 10:57:30
32.   rbj
Thanks BobbyBaseBall & Yankaholic. MLB is shooting itself in the foot here, you want to maximize your exposure, to get more people to listen to the commercials & become fans, not limit appeal and try to sqeeze every dollar out of a smaller pool. That way just turns people off. I can control my addiction for one night.
2006-05-19 11:03:59
33.   jayd
12 Sure 2 games may be the final winning margin but the point I was trying to make is that among the losses each team will have games lost due to managerial/front office errors. Whether its manny delcarmen/lenny dinardo will cover for bronson arroyo for the rsox or the erickson experiment for the yanks -- these things should even out. Being a redsox watcher in addition to a yankees fan, let me tell you the former would drive you out of your mind by season's end. For me they are an endless source of amusement.

I think we're both on the same page here, just to clarify. Every win and loss is important, particularly for this division.

Looks like we don't have the 98 yankees here (my preseason prediction down the drain)but June/July and Dontrelle/Clemens shakeup is going to be big.

I am bereft over the loss of bubba...melky just doesn't do anything for me, hopefully I'm wrong.

2006-05-19 11:05:35
34.   yankaholic
Navarro and Martin.. Martin has a huge headsup on this mini-tussle coz hes the "home" kid, any Dudger not 'fessing it is only kidding..

I guess ppl still see him as a Yankee and at the time of the trade.. they were pretty clear that.. R Martin is their future..

when the deck is loaded so much against u.. i guess he may even feel that he's just keeping the role warm for Martin..

how can a 20 yo take it? Cash has gotto rescue the kid.. i think he can learn a lot from Posada and be a good contributor for the future..

heres a tuff one.. would u be ok with a Duncan-Navarro swap??

2006-05-19 11:20:00
35.   rbj
Thanks Rob Gee30 I had thought that it was more of a straight up deal between Yanks & Az.

34 I'd be happy with a Duncan - Nvarro swap. Third base is set for the next 7 years +. 1B is fine now with Giambi/Philips. Jorge is going to need a solid backup/replacement.

2006-05-19 11:39:06
36.   Oscar Azocar
34 35 A Duncan/Navarro swap would be a steal, but I don't think the Dodgers would go for it. Duncan is having a horrible season at Columbus right now (.209/.279/.255/.534). His only strong "season" was in the AFL. Maybe his ceiling is high, but his minor league stats have not been overly impressive (OPS usually around 800, and lots of strikeouts). I hate to say this, but he's looking more like Drew Henson so far.
2006-05-19 11:42:34
37.   Andre
EI is the way it is because MLB has a monopoly. They can do whatever they want, and we have no recourse - if I want to watch Yanks games where I live (Massachusetts) I have to purchase EI. So I purchase EI every year, even though I know I'll get screwed out of a bunch of games per year. More and more people buy EI every year, so what's the incentive to change it?
2006-05-19 11:46:17
38.   Rob Gee
34 Seeing as Navarro was the starting C for LA the beginning of the year, I don't think that's enough. Plus, after his big AFL numbers / MVP, Duncan has done nothing to stay exciting.

Unless, a team is willing to seriously overpay (2 B-level prospects), Navarro stays with the Dodgers for the reasons Cliff/Jon cite. In a year or two he may be available at a cheaper price, but it depends on whether Martin establishes himself.

2006-05-19 11:48:13
39.   standuptriple
32 If you think that's crazy, check on the lawsuit MLB Advanced Media is trying to win to maintain control of previously public-domain stats. They are essentially trying to monopolize the fantasy game.
2006-05-19 11:48:53
40.   underdog
As a Dodger fan, I can say, no, the DOdgers wouldn't be interested in that. We already have 1 (if not 2, or 3 if you count Blake DeWitt and Joel Guzman, who are now playing other positions but were at 3b) top prospects at 3rd to try out in addition to Willy Aybar when Bill Mueller's knees officiall give out (as opposed to unofficially and temporarily, like now) so I don't see what that would do for LA. Meanwhile, I don't think Navarro's going anywhere yet - unless, as Jon says, a trade came along that was impossible to ignore.

However, we will give you Sandy Alomar Jr., currently the backup. Hey, he's been hitting pretty well in limited duty. He is, however, 67 years old.

My dad's a Yankees fan, btw, and enjoys your blog. I root for them in the AL for his sake. Buena suerte!

18 PS to Rob: The Dodgers moved from Brooklyn awhile back... ;-)

2006-05-19 12:02:48
41.   Rob Gee
LoHud (see side link blogs) has it that Bubba got DL'd and Mitch Jones got called up to ride the bench with Reese.

Abraham hasn't gotten official word but it looks like they weren't never going to start two rookies in the OF at a time, and they want Thompson to keep getting regular playing time.

So for the Shef-less games it will be Bernie, Damon, and Melky every day. The good news is we might see Phillips and Jones get more AB's at DH. If Bernie maintains his level of 'production', he might get that permanent PH job once Shef returns.

2006-05-19 12:37:43
42.   bp1
Gonna be baseball tonight? Still raining here in the Mid Hudson Valley, although it is getting brighter.
2006-05-19 12:39:37
43.   Harley
Sidebar, but Mike and the Mad Dog are doing their Yankee/Mets pregame show, and Billy Wagner is on the phone. Mike asked him about two of his blown saves -- both came at the hands of batters whom are friends of Wagner -- and Billy interrupted with:

"You know I gotta hear this shit forever, now -- "

Heh. Guess they don't use a delay at YES.

2006-05-19 12:46:34
44.   Zack
Anyone else read this inane article on espn comparing the mets and yanks?

I will refrain from comment...

2006-05-19 13:03:34
45.   standuptriple
41 I gotta admit I'm glad to see Jones up with the big club. He won a spot in my heart after his display at the AAA HR derby in Sac. The rest of the field was nowhere near as impressive. I won't pretend he'll see many AB's though. I hope he gets ahold of just one though.
2006-05-19 13:09:43
46.   yankaholic
Zack, what was inane abt that.. DISMISSIVE is probably a fair word to explain the sentiment towards the "other" team
2006-05-19 13:16:14
47.   wsporter
36 Oscar, Duncan for Navarro would address a position of need by giving up an asset at a position of strength. Remember though Duncan is 21. He was rushed to AA and has been rushed to AAA. He was asked to switch positions and then was jerked around a little after Pena arrived. It's pretty understandable that he feels a little lost right now. He's got a long swing that looks increasingly slower the longer it gets, he needs to shorten it up. Apparently they screwed around with him last year trying to make him a dead pull hitter. Now they've got him back to the alley shooting style that comes more naturally to him. He' looks like he's got good quick hands and the ball does seem to fly off his bat. His hands also seem pretty full for a young kid. I wouldn't give up on him just yet.

Getting Navarro would be a nice thing but I wouldn't run out and dance in the street if we have to give up Duncan to get him.

45 SUT, nice thoughts on Jones. I hope he can make something good happen too. Although opportunity would be a good if unexpected thing.

2006-05-19 13:40:15
48.   TomP
rbj: Personally, I think the MLB Audio package is a great bargain. For less than the price of a good meal, you get to hear the radio broadcasts of every major league game, all season long, and usually from a choice of at least two different stations (home and away). Between the radio broadcast and the pitch-by-pitch graphics on MLB Gameday, I can almost imagine I'm watching the game.

It does suck that Extra Innings, ESPN and MLB TV black out local games, but I'm resigned to it at this point.

2006-05-19 13:40:21
49.   Shaun P
44 I thought that was an interesting article, to be honest. Filled in a lot of history that I didn't otherwise know.
2006-05-19 13:51:37
50.   vockins
19 That is amazing to me. I can't believe that.

To think that we might get to see a Pierre/Womack 1-2 is really something. It is like Maris/Mantle, but the exact opposite.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-05-19 13:59:33
51.   randym77
44 That was actually sort of interesting.

For inane, there's this Newsday article:

Though I did laugh at this part:

"The Stadium is a baseball cathedral, history lurking in each corner, sure to be missed by many when the Yankees' new ballpark opens. In Shea, meanwhile, you'd look in the corners only to make sure there are no rats."

2006-05-19 14:01:29
52.   Astoria Chris
For those too far from NYC to hear the WCBS radio broadcast, check out this list of Yankee radio network stations:

There are a lot more stations on the network that I thought.

Also, that should be spelled "moidalize" according to my trusty Bugs Bunny Dictionary, 3rd Edition.

2006-05-19 14:06:14
53.   C2Coke
8 yankaholic, I don't think there is anything that will cancel out the blackout restriction at this point. It's really a pain in the neck. That's probably why they always emphasize that there are on-demand games....

Last time I was in Montreal when the Yanks were playing in Toronto, and there was a national blackout when the game was only locally televised...

2006-05-19 14:19:21
54.   wsporter
49 MFD I read that article. It's this statement that makes so much sense about the Mets: "The Mets replaced something that was lost, and there's been something lovable about them going back to Casey Stengel,". It really puts their popularity and the passion of their fans into a context that everyone who cares about New York can respect.

And it's this kind of crap that so pisses me off concerning the Yankees "There's no sense of entitlement, like with the Yankees."

From the time I was 8 till I was 19 we basically sucked. We had 4 or 5 good years then we sucked again. Other than a very few privileged fans who came into this in the 1994/1995 period who have no idea what it means to play hopeless desultory baseball there is no sense of entitlement. In fact I'm not sure even those younger folks have it because most seem to be aware of the not so recent ugly past.

Entitlement my pinstriped ass. I, and each of us, is damn grateful for every little bit of glory and fun we've witnessed and enjoyed for the last 11 or 12 years. I'm very mindful of the fact that it can disappear without even a moments notice.

We know were entitled to feel good about last nights win if it occurred and that we're entitled to worry about tonight's game. That's the extent of Yankee fan entitlement. I'm sick of that holier than thou horse hockey that gets tossed around so lightly. Time for a new generality folks, that one is soooooo played.

2006-05-19 15:22:04
55.   unmoderated
#54, I couldn't agree with you more. it is a priviledge to watch such a run of success. i worry every year that posada will turn into butch wyneger, mussina will turn into andy hawkins, and bernie will turn into roberto kelly with no speed...

...wait a minute... NOOOOO!!!

2006-05-19 15:23:13
56.   unmoderated
i spell 'wyneger' right but mangle 'privilege.'

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