Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Say Huh?
2007-01-09 05:18
by Alex Belth

Kei Igawa was introduced to the media yesterday at Yankee Stadium. Here is how GM, Brian Cashman, described the Bombers' new southpaw:

"He's not a blower and he's not a soft-tosser," Cashman said. "He's somewhere in between.

"I think pitchability is the proper word. I think he knows how to pitch, I think he knows what he's doing."
(N.Y. Post)

Pitchability. Hey, you could look it up. I don't know where you'd look it up, but you could try all the same.

Comments (114)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-01-09 05:32:46
1.   JoeInRI
I guess, if I had my choice between pitchability and hitability in a pitcher, I'd choose the former . . .
2007-01-09 05:38:39
2.   kylepetterson
So our new pitcher knows how to pitch. Sounds good to me.
2007-01-09 05:39:24
3.   kylepetterson
I like "I think he knows how to pitch".
2007-01-09 05:50:47
4.   Yankee Fan In Boston
oh boy. i have stumbled upon a plethora of igawa information. as someone who enjoys eating until paralysis sets in, i have become even more excited about the opportunity to cheer for this kid.

here is a list of 100 igawa facts as translated from a japanese website (via

some highlights:

3.Ate 100 plates of sushi on Shinjo's treat.
(On philosophy of eating) "If you aren't going to be full no matter how much you eat, then eat until you're sick of it."

17.Still a virgin when he turned pro. Manager Nomura ordered him to lose it.

29. Attention is caught accidentally by the doll picking crane machine next to the video arcade where he really wants to go. Spent whole time there and even forgot his wallet there. [so that must be one out of the four times mentioned in that interview...]

51. Asked about where he wants to go at team's group abroad vacation (team treat for division title), he said, "Dubai". Reason? "I want to see where all this oil got drilled out."

64. Watches the game (when he's not pitching) in infield audience seats, not dugout.

67. Likes to sleep

68. Feel ashamed about his large appetite. Eat sukiyaki by facing the wall to feel better.

96. Answer to a reporter's question, "See my hp (homepage)"

this kid had better be decent. it will kill me emotionally if he doesn't compete.

also, sorry everyone, but karim garcia will be playing for the phillies this season. my sincere apologies to the latino bambino's el caminos.

2007-01-09 06:12:32
5.   JoeInRI
4 Re: the Latino Bambino . . . I wonder if Petey will throw at him when the mutts meet the Fills
2007-01-09 06:20:49
6.   mehmattski
Oh good. I was worried that Quest would be a Belly Itcher.
2007-01-09 06:21:53
7.   Shaun P
4 Even better - Quest plays Final Fantasy! Thanks YFiB, that was a fun list.
2007-01-09 06:23:49
8.   Jim Dean
This is going to be either really really fun (think a page out of Ball Four) or really quite sad. The kid is definitely easy to root for.

Me, I'm hoping there's reporter (PeteAbe!?) to tag along when Godziller brings Quest to his first NYC porn shop.

Otherwise, I wish I could put a bet on the odds that Quest finishes with more wins than DM, since that's the only thing that really matters and all. I'm not sure I believe it, but he's got a shot to make up for the expected difference in peripherals with that lineup.

The nice benefit for Quest(ion) is that if he pitches even close to DM and the Yanks finish better, he gets huge positive publicity. If he or the Yanks do awful, he's still not a national treasure.

2007-01-09 06:27:55
9.   Ben
Never seen a signing played down more by the GM, 'We've looked at him over the past four years and he's not DM. I don't want to give our fan base the wrong idea.'

Brian Cashman masquerading as Jeff Van Gundy.

Igawa and Pavano are gonna fight it out for the Cy Young this year...

2007-01-09 06:31:45
10.   kylepetterson
4 35. Great appetite, fearlessly eat lunchbox in front of his manager.

He ate his lunchbox?

2007-01-09 06:34:02
11.   kylepetterson
4 53. Dined out with his teammate Kanemoto one day, but left right after he finished his own dish.
2007-01-09 06:35:16
12.   Yankee Fan In Boston
8 "...when Godziller brings Quest to his first NYC porn shop."

wow. i hadn't pondered matsui's interests in combination with the quest kid's obsessive tendencies. a recipe for hilarity.

9 *"Igawa and Pavano are gonna fight it out for the Cy Young this year...

ben, welcome to the Italian Stallion's Battalion, the fledgling pavano well-wishing committee and cheering section.

2007-01-09 06:37:10
13.   Yankee Fan In Boston
10 i'm pretty sure they're talking about a bento, but y'know, i wouldn't put it past this kid. i'm just wondering if he'll become a conan o'brien fan. ...or schwarzenegar perhaps.
2007-01-09 06:38:27
14.   kylepetterson
4 99. Camp in line to buy DQ8 (a video game) at seven in the morning. Left his contract negotiation to his agent.
2007-01-09 07:04:59
15.   Yankee Fan In Boston
those here who were (pipe)dreaming of seeing johan santana in (yankee) pinstripes at somepoint this (or next) season should read this article, which discusses his no trade clause:

2007-01-09 07:16:53
16.   New Amsterdam Yankees
I liked this from an SI article:

Matsui on Igawa:

"I am very excited that Kei Igawa has become a member of the New York Yankees. We played against each other many times in Japan, and I know firsthand that he is a highly talented player," Matsui said in a statement. "On the other hand, if he gets knocked out of a game, he will hear it from me before he hears it from the fans."

Hopefully having another guy there who has already gone through the transition will help Quest (a nickname that is great). I'm excited to see the guy pitch, and I agree, he seems easy to root for. I read that Top 100 list a few days ago, and there is some truly mind-boggling stuff on there. I like, as YFIB said, his manager ordering him to have sex and the fact that he sits in the stands when he isn't pitching. Maybe the Yankees will let him live in a trailer in the parking lot of the Stadium, like he asked his old team to let him do?

2007-01-09 07:17:12
17.   OldYanksFan
I could cut and paste this info, but it's in a better format at:

This is a comparison between DMats and IQuest. While DMats obviously has better numbers, the spread is not that great. Furthermore, in given years, IQuest has bettered DMats in both strikeouts and (the Japanese) Cy Young.

Looking at these numbers, I see the comparison between a #1 and a #2. Maybe DMats 'stuff' translates better as being dominant in MLB. But considering the Sox are looking for either an Ace or excellent #2, and we are looking for a reasonable #5, it seems our goals are a lot more realistic.

Is this about DMats hype? Those numbers just don't support what the CW is saying. And on top, IQuest is LH, a tiny advantage in MLB. Am I missing something?

2007-01-09 07:24:37
18.   OldYanksFan
16 There is no doubt that having someone who literally speaks his language, is a big, big boost for IQuest. This is still and team game, and a lot of 'socializing' goes on in the dugout. I imagine Matsui's english is coming along, and he can help IQuest here too.

The only advantage DMats has, is he doesn't have to listen to Schrill... although he will have to watch Manny.

2007-01-09 07:28:24
19.   Yankee Fan In Boston
17 a great link. thanks.

i am really starting to get my hopes up, which is exactly what i had decided NOT to do.

2007-01-09 07:33:51
20.   New Amsterdam Yankees
17 Matsuzaka has superior raw stuff and command (not necessarily related to walk rate) and it is widely believed his specific repertoire of pitches will translate better to the major leagues. Plus, I'd imagine there are other statistical measures that paint a different picture. I'm not sure why the consensus is what it is, as I'm no scout, but I see your point; it seems incongruous, based on their previous performance, to suggest that Matsuzaka will be an ace and Igawa will struggle to stay in the rotation. I have to imagine that from Cashman's end, at least some of it is managing expectations.

19 Don't get your hopes up too high, you'll be happier. A decent number 5 is fine by me :-)

2007-01-09 07:36:51
21.   New Amsterdam Yankees
21 I also believe I read, though I might be wrong, that league factors make Matsuzaka's performance more impressive.
2007-01-09 07:38:05
22.   jayd
15 You know I was flipping through my Minneapolis Pioneer Press sports section when I saw that. I had never gotten an answer from the pipe dreamers here and needless to say it perked my attention to see that Johan My Johan would be out there in 2007.

You gotta figure that beyond money it's all about prospects for the twinkies and with the Yanks now ranked #6 with pitching prospects according to somewhere I forget (they used to be #17 from the same organization), I think I finally see a Melky trade here in the making.

Fucking buying ourselves a championship again -- isn't it just disgusting? hehehe. I just hate it so much I have to pinch myself.

You also figure that no way is the Rocket going to team with Curt Swilling, so I'm pencilling in my starting five as

Johan My Johan

Now that's buying a championship, none of that loosy goosy change fallin' out of your pants that the rsawks want to pass off as "spending."

Evil moves to a new level in the sawksfan imagination. Do you know where your children are this summer?

I love it.

2007-01-09 07:42:43
23.   C2Coke
17 Actually, according some reports I have read previously from all over the place online, I think the Yankees and we the fans have been reasonably underestimating IQuest (I like the nickname!) a bit. Now that Unit is out of the picture without any other new pitcher being signed on, I see IQuest being one rotation higher than what's his name (aka Pavano). Further, I really think IQuest will be better than Wright. However, we've been disappointed too many times, maybe that's why Cash the man is setting up the stage differetly this time around.

From what I've gathered (re: 4), perhaps IQuest's pitching is not as good as Matsuzaka, but his desire to compete is part of what got him to become a top pitcher in Japan.

2007-01-09 07:46:06
24.   Yankee Fan In Boston
20 "Don't get your hopes up too high, you'll be happier."

i know, i know... but he eats like it's going out of style, potentially has a dry sense of humor, and said all of the right things at the press conference...


not a blower and not a soft-tosser... not a blower and not a soft-tosser... not a blower and not a soft-tosser...

2007-01-09 07:51:06
25.   Knuckles
I don't care about his pitchability, as long as he has good strategery, and wears the pinstripes with dignitude.
2007-01-09 07:52:20
26.   C2Coke
24 He may have a weird character, but he seems serious and confident about his pitching. So, I totally understand why you are getting your hopes up a bit especially when the Yankees seem to be a easier environment for IQuest to get used to than the Red Sox for Matsuzaka...
2007-01-09 07:57:01
27.   Schteeve
Can we knock off this IQuest nonsense? He wasn't manufactured by Apple, and I can't use him to help me find new music, so can we please drop the I and just call him Quest. Or if you need to work his name into it some how, call him Kuest, or Kwest.

I beg you.

Also, he's not Matsuzaka. Ok. He just isn't. "In given years he tops Matsuzaka in xyz category." That's sampling error. That's convenient comparison. Don't believe the hype. If this guy is league average, we will be very lucky.

2007-01-09 07:59:45
28.   Schteeve
Also, "desire to compete?" being "serious about his pitching?"

Don't we think all pitchers except for Pavano maybe have a "desire to compete," and are "serious about their pitching?" I've never once seen a major league pitcher toss a ball underhand toward the plate, and the start giggling about it.

2007-01-09 07:59:50
29.   Yankee Fan In Boston
26 yes. the determined, no-nonsense way in which he carries himself (even that SI interview is an illustration of this) should be a plus. i don't usually get so excited about a guy i've never seen play signing up to play in the bronx.

and matsuzaka has been billed as the "new ace" here in boston since the sox won the bidding. that there is a tall order. a precarious pedestal upon which to place a man.

i love the way ca$hman is playing this.

82 days until opening day.

2007-01-09 08:04:41
30.   Yankee Fan In Boston
28 "except for Pavano"


you have made an enemy today, schteeve. prepare to have all that you once thought you knew about comeback carl's drive and determination disproved.

2007-01-09 08:09:26
31.   Bama Yankee
27 "If this guy is league average, we will be very lucky."

If things don't work out, we could just move him to 1B... ;-)

2007-01-09 08:10:34
32.   C2Coke
31 Why do I think we will have Cairo on 1B and him on the bench instead?
2007-01-09 08:18:12
33.   Shaun P
31 Hasn't there been enough vomiting and lighting of one's self on fire around here? Make the madness stop!


Hopefully, the Goose will get elected to the HoF today and then we'll have something solid to talk about.

2007-01-09 08:20:39
34.   JL25and3
Having read the CNN/SI interview, I'm concerned about how Quest's complete lack of cultural sophistication will make it in NY. I mean, come on, he couldn't even choose among Godzilla, Mothra and Rodan?

The answer is clearly Mothra. It's those two freaky little princesses that make the difference.

2007-01-09 08:22:08
35.   holmesy007
and now for something completely different... New Jersey eyed as source of stench

and i thought it was the knicks smelling up ny

2007-01-09 08:34:27
36.   Bama Yankee
32 Belly full of guts vs. belly full of sushi...

33 Sorry. You can't stop the madness around here, you can only hope to contain it for a little while... ;-)

2007-01-09 08:47:27
37.   Jim Dean
I wonder if anyone has ever lit themselves on fire while vomiting.

Hmm - now there's an idea if Jorge suffers a major injury.

2007-01-09 08:53:31
38.   Peter
37 Can Miguel Cairo catch?

(I kid! I kid!)

2007-01-09 08:58:38
39.   dianagramr
But is there truthiness in Cashman's assessment of Igawa's pitchability?
2007-01-09 08:59:01
40.   Peter
4 That 100 Things list was awesome. I'm officially on the Quest bandwagon.

Torre should take away his Playstation the night before each start, just to piss him off. He seems to pitch better when he's angry about anime and video games.

2007-01-09 09:02:09
41.   Raf
28 "I've never once seen a major league pitcher toss a ball underhand toward the plate, and the start giggling about it."

I would say Quiz came pretty close.

2007-01-09 09:06:34
42.   dianagramr

Quest needs to chat with Zumaya regarding video game addiction.

2007-01-09 09:19:55
43.   Bama Yankee
37 Seems like I remember seeing Gene Simmons do that when I was a kid.

Also I think this guy has come pretty close on a couple of occasions:

2007-01-09 09:26:58
44.   Schteeve
41 Yes but he had a belly full of guts, and a piercing stare, and a confident swagger that infused his teammates with intangibleness while he was doing it. So it's different.
2007-01-09 09:38:41
45.   Schteeve
Igawa-san definitely seems like a character and I think he'll be fun to root for but..

19.Instantly gained much more weight after he moved out of the dormitory (note: Hanshin Tigers has its own dormitory for new players and rookies), and unable to be back into shape before next season.

62. His catcher Yano: "Most unlikely pitcher to take suggestion."


2007-01-09 09:43:52
46.   OldYanksFan
In an attempt to add some baseball savy to this thread, I post the following subject for dabate:
Cashman is NOT done getting pitchers. I believe we will get both another SP and RP. I think Roger can be counted on to jerk everyone around, and I don't think he's the answer.

So, who are the next 2 pitchers to wear pinstripes in 2007?

And... Will Melky be wearing pinstripes in 2007, or is he officially tradebait?

2007-01-09 09:47:47
47.   C2Coke
46 I for one is still waiting for the storm with all the calmness and quietness.
2007-01-09 09:52:20
48.   3rd gen yankee fan
4 I dunno about Igawa, guys... there's enough in here to raise some red flags with me about his fitting in. He took a nap during his team's division winning game? His catcher says, "Most unlikely pitcher to take suggestion." ?? How's that gonna work on a team where winning the World Series is the goal every year?
2007-01-09 10:09:53
49.   dianagramr

Hmmm .... does Igawa seem any worse in that regard than say ... David Wells?

David was/is certainly a unique individual ... stubborn ... out-spoken, but he adored his days as a Yankee, and pitched his heart out for the team.

2007-01-09 10:15:46
50.   mehmattski
49 Then again, if A-Rod said any of those things, the townsfolk would be raiding his house, torches and pitchforks in hand. Double standards piss me off.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-01-09 10:18:10
51.   Yankee Fan In Boston
48 i agree with the sentiments in 49. if anything, i expect igawa to be more willing to fall into line and march in step with the team. did you read that interview? the guy is all business all the time. strictly business.

yes. i am basing all of this on a single interview and some list of 100 "facts" from some anonymous japanese website. although ca$hman pointed to the quester's learning of a bit of english over 2 days as an indication of his work ethic. i also like the idea of witholding video games as incentive (40)... brilliant.

2007-01-09 10:19:11
52.   Shaun P
50 You mean like how steroids/PEDs user are treated if they play baseball versus how they are treated if they play, say, football?

46 Do current Yankee minor leaguers count?

2007-01-09 10:24:15
53.   Jukeofurl
Why not call Igawa QM as in Question Mark? AND why is everybody from Ca$h on down to my plumber calling the rotation shakey? How about waiting until after the first 30 games or Pavano's first freak mound mishap-whichever comes first.

Meanwhile if Cairo is on first, Who's on second? Horace Clark? Oh yeah, almost forgot: the Rat Sox eat @%#*! daily. . ..

2007-01-09 10:26:40
54.   mehmattski
53 No no no, What's on second. Who's on first.
2007-01-09 10:35:41
55.   Yankee Fan In Boston
the d-backs are holding a press conference at 3 (eastern) to re-intro RJ.

it is official.

2007-01-09 10:48:33
56.   dianagramr
We now know 100 things more about Igawa than we knew about Randy ...
2007-01-09 11:00:09
57.   standuptriple
49 Bring on the sake!
2007-01-09 11:03:40
58.   dianagramr
Ripken and Gwynn make the Hall, both with over 97% of the votes (no others qualified)

Just announced ...

2007-01-09 11:08:39
59.   Yankee Fan In Boston
58 so... scott brosius didn't make it?
2007-01-09 11:09:22
60.   thelarmis
Goose came this close. something like 71.2% 21 votes shy. he's on a phone interview on espn right now.
2007-01-09 11:13:37
61.   dianagramr
Full voting results

McGwire got 23% .... hmmm ....

Not including the 2 blank ballots submitted (!):
Gwynn was left off 11 ballots
Ripken was left off 6 ballots

Those writers will be suspended from covering MLB for 50 games as first-time offenders ...

2007-01-09 11:17:33
62.   Shaun P
61 As I have stated over at the Griddle, I see nothing wrong with any writer who left that arrogant team-stealing jerk, otherwise known as Cal Ripken Jr, off their Hall of Fame ballot. Character is something the voters may consider, and that selfish self-absorbed team stealer is clearly lacking in character. I hope at least one of those 6 writers was from upstate NY.

But not voting for Tony Gwynn? What's wrong with those 11 guys?

2007-01-09 11:19:41
63.   mehmattski
59 Looks like no one at all voted for Brosius. I guess the guy from (who wrote some piece suggesting Brosius should be in, leading to a FireJoeMorgan tirade) didn't have a vote. Twelve people voted for Paul O'Neill, 4.4 percent, just under the threshhold for him to continue to be on the ballot.

Others with less than five percent: Jay Buhner will join Ken Phelps in the "Not in the Hall of Fame" club. Albert Belle probably has the record for most home runs (381) without making it to the second ballot.

2007-01-09 11:28:26
64.   Schteeve
50 Dude, thanks for pointing that out. If A-Rod ever had been to fat and not in shape, and called by his teammate "least likely to take a suggestion" he'd get it up the um...nose from every fan and media a-hole in the country.
2007-01-09 11:33:56
65.   Shawn Clap
63 This is Belle's 2nd ballot. Canseco will probably go down as the biggest slugger not to get a 2nd ballot.

The real question is: When did they start letting Jay Buhner's mom vote for the HOF?

2007-01-09 11:40:38
66.   mehmattski
65 As I noted at the Griddle, I suspect it was Frank Costanza.
2007-01-09 11:57:26
67.   rbj
54 I don't know.

I'm not surprised that Goose didn't make it, but I am disappointed.

And if no one's made it unanimously so far (not Cobb, Young or Ruth) I just don't see why it should start with Ripken or Gwynn. Great guys, HoFers, sure, but not vastly better than other guys already in.

2007-01-09 12:12:29
68.   Shaun P
67 He's on third.

Alleged fans boo him all the time. Can't figure out why. The shortstop - Idon't giveadarn - and he seem to get along very well.

2007-01-09 12:13:18
69.   Alvaro Espinoza
67 Clemens?
2007-01-09 12:24:18
70.   Chyll Will
69 They'll "punish" him for not being excited about going in with a Boston cap. It's always something.

"He's not a blower and he's not a soft-tosser," Cashman said. "He's somewhere in between."

A hummer? A zinger?

2007-01-09 12:27:41
71.   Bama Yankee
68 Well played, Shaun P
2007-01-09 12:30:46
72.   YankeeInMichigan
67 Goose increased his vote by 6.6% over last year. The only other candidate to increase his percentage was Concepcion (up 1.1%). Everyone else saw a decrease (ranging from 1.3% -- Rice -- to 7.8% -- Hershiser). Clearly, although writers are allowed to vote for up to 10 candidates, many impose stricter limits on themselves. So Goose should get in easily next year.

As for Concepcion, I read that Tony Perez was stumping for him at the Winter Meetings. This campaign tactic clearly had a positive effect, so we may see more of it next year. It would be fun to see Reggie and Gator giving a pitch for the Goose.

2007-01-09 12:35:56
73.   Schteeve
72 Not to mention that Joe Morgan won't shut the f up about Concepcion from his bully pulpit.
2007-01-09 12:44:07
74.   Shaun P
73 Luckily for us, George Foster and Ken Griffey Sr aren't still eligible.

I'm sure there were some voters who didn't vote for Goose because they wanted to give Ripken and Gwynn their own 'special' day. What garbage. Goose is just as deserving a HoF as those two. Who cares if he played for more than one team in his career?

71 Thank you, Bama.

2007-01-09 13:03:55
75.   standuptriple
67 The "Unanimous vote" debate needs to be retired. It seems like each writer has their own personal axe to grind on the matter. Personally I'd rather give them one of my favorite lines from The Simpsons, Attack of the 50ft. Eyesores-episode, "Just don't look". These hacks just want attention to their crappy daily columns and (now worse) their sh!tty blogs or promote their next craptastical book that will inevitably add nothing to society. Ruth probably brushed some guys off, Cobb was a notorious bastard, Young's arm should have fallen off each August. Anybody with an ounce of baseball intelligence knows those guys were the Titans of The Game. Were they above reproach? No. The writers are Napoleon-complex babies who look to take advantage of what little "power" they have at the first opportunity. Unfortunately they have a set of keys to Cooperstown. Ignore them and their little charade for affection. I'd like to see more scrutiny/accountability in the voters but I doubt it will happen in the next 20 years.
2007-01-09 13:07:47
76.   bp1
Hard to reconcile the fact that Sutter got in last year and Goose is still on the outside looking in.

Meanwhile, McGwire is taking the fall for every juicer in the game while Roger somehow escapes scrutiny (and subpoena) and will get inducted with a Ripkenesque vote.


2007-01-09 14:05:26
77.   YankeeInMichigan
Of the old-school firemen, Gossage and Fingers stand head-and-shoulders above the rest. Anyone who played or watched baseball in the seventies and eighties knows that. Goose tarnished his legacy a bit by hanging around a few years too long. But next year his plaque will go up in Cooperstown, and future generations will recognize him as one of the greatest.

I was at a game in 1978 where Guidry loaded the bases to lead off the 7th. Goose came in and allowed two of the runners to score, but he then induced Jim Rice to ground into an inning-ending double play, and proceeded to hold the Red Sox scoreless for the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th innings (Sparky then pitched 3 more scoreless innings for the win). Simply amazing.

2007-01-09 14:19:08
78.   Bama Yankee
Who is this "Ripkenesque" guy? ;-)
We better watch out our Cashman will sign him to be our backup shortstop. I can see it now:
Ripkenesque to Cairo to Mientkiewicz
2007-01-09 14:20:06
79.   Chyll Will
76 Yes, but don't forget that we ultimately have no power to choose who is enshrined. There's no way to eliminate or appropriate politics (personal or social) fairly or with regard to human nature. Remember that it took an act of Congress to ensure that certain segments of the population had a right to vote in this country even after an amendment to the Constitution had already guaranteed such a right almost 100 years before. Compare voting for the Hall of Fame to that. It's just a closed shop, no better than that other HoF in Canton, OH in my opinion.

As standup implies, the only way to deal with the self-absorbed or self-promotional tendencies of uninformed or unworthy wielders of, um, "responsibility" is to marginalize them economically; it worked wonders against the faction of the population I mentioned previously, it'll work in this case. Don't read their columns, don't comment on their blogs, don't hit their pages, just pretend they're not there.

(Yes, I meant to be sarcastic on the marginalization bit, but it makes sense.)

2007-01-09 14:26:13
80.   Chyll Will
78 Is that a law firm or the three stages of UID (Utility Infielder's Disease)?
2007-01-09 14:36:42
81.   Bama Yankee
80 LOL. UID, I suppose that's better than an IUD or a DUI...
2007-01-09 14:48:20
82.   Chyll Will
81 The last stage effects the meintkel... er, myctxkzl... um, mental. So no,...
2007-01-09 15:13:17
83.   Schteeve
Gossage obviously doesn't have enough pitchability.
2007-01-09 16:17:46
84.   JL25and3
63 Dave Kingman, 442 HR, didn't make it off the first ballot. He got 3 votes.
2007-01-09 16:51:49
85.   Ravenscar
I'd just like to say that I've come here to escape the Mac/Windows wars that have been rekindled by the release of the iPhone on the tech blogs.

At least baseball people know how to get along, and.... They announced what today now about who getting in where?


2007-01-09 17:04:36
86.   kylepetterson
Is bud light on next years ballot, or the one after that?
2007-01-09 17:08:50
87.   kylepetterson
87 Sorry, I forgot. Bud light played football. Baseball needs to kick football's ass. And I'm not talking metaphorically. I mead literally. The sport of baseball needs to kick the sport of football's rear end to keep me from watching it as there is no baseball to be seen. Where are you baseball? Go Seahawks.

PS I underlined metaphorically 'cause I had to look it up.

PPS I bolded literally for emphasis. And cause I'm awesome.

2007-01-09 17:29:46
88.   thelarmis
i won't understand if Maddux doesn't go in first ballot, unanimously. he's got well over 300 wins and he's surpassed 3,000 strikeouts. he'll probably pitch 2 years in san diego and perhaps another year or two in the NL Worst. it's feasable he ends up 3rd w/ 375 wins. that's ridiculous, cousin larry! he's got 4 cy youngs, 16 gold gloves, tons of playoff experience, a low career era, less than 1,000 walks (w/ all those k's!), an OPS against that makes tony womack look good and a body that is the antithesis of steroids, though he indubitably faced juiced hitters. he's been a model citizen both on & off the field and is a tremendously smart player, to boot. if ladewski wants to leave his ballot blank, his rights should just be revoked at that point.
2007-01-09 18:40:36
89.   rilkefan
62 "team stealer"? Not in my dictionary.
2007-01-09 20:39:38
90.   mikeplugh
If you want to know more about Igawa, check out the most recent post at Canyon of Heroes. It has 4 links.

1. Just after his posting (all you need to know)
2. A projection for Andy Pettitte type numbers
3. Under the radar possibilities
4. A link to the Pending Pinstripes article I just wrote. Mike A. over at MVN kindly asked me to do a guest piece.

He's the 2nd coming of David Wells in terms of quirkiness, which I think comes with pitchability. I guarantee he'll be the (unintentional?) cut up in the clubhouse on several occasions. I expect Jeter at one point to say, "He's definitely a character."

Mark that down on your Bronx Banter index card. I almost guarantee those exact words will come our of the Captain's mouth.

2007-01-10 03:58:13
91.   Shaun P
89 Long story short, so I don't rant too much:

There once was this team called the Utica Blue Sox. It existed, for, oh 60+ years, and was famous (among other things) for being the Phillies' farm team in the late 40s where all the Whiz Kids played, and whoever managed the Whiz Kids as well.

In 2001, Cal Ripken Jr. decided that his hometown of Aberdeen, MD, HAD to have a minor league team. Because he wanted to build a mini-replica of Camden Yards and call it Ripken Stadium. And because he wanted to own a minor league team. Instead of buying an already-existing O's affiliate, he decided to buy the Blue Sox. And move them to Maryland. Because, you know, all the teams in the NY-Penn League would love those 10 hour (one way) bus rides down to Aberdeen. And the rivalry between Elmira and Aberdeen is legendary.

And so now the Aberdeen IronBirds (wonder where they got that name from?) play in the NY-Penn League, and Utica has no team. This Utica native, for one, has despised Cal Ripken Jr ever since. Team-stealing jerk.

2007-01-10 05:23:08
92.   Jim Dean
91 I did not know that. Thanks for sharing. I drive by that park fairly often and I wondered what the story was. It's such a weird place to have a stadium.

Still, Shaun, don't you think that sin pales in comparison for all the good things he did as a ballplayer?

But I understand these things well - how people are treated affects us deeply sometimes. I, for one, may be driven from ever attending the the new Yankee Stadium based on how they treated their Bronx neighbors, especially the kids, for a greed inducing stadium that wasn't all that necessary. I, mean, can you even imagine climbing stairs to play on top of parking garages? I'll have to see if the execution is as horrible as I imagine it will be. If so, I can't imagine buying in to the overpriced tickets, parking, beer, etc.

2007-01-10 05:25:37
93.   Ravenscar
Shaun P -

This former Oriskany kid is with you 100% on Ripkin's annoying purchase. My mom now lives about 10 minutes from Murnane Field.

2007-01-10 06:17:21
94.   NetShrine
Shaun P - did the Blue Sox draw any fans to their games before Ripken bought and moved the team?

Was that not the same issue with the team from Upstate NY that moved to Staten Island for the Yankees?

2007-01-10 06:28:30
95.   Raf
94 I guess with the Tigers moving to Oneonta, the sting wasn't as bad. Albany lost the Yanks to Norwich, but the Astros affiliate is across the river in Troy.

I suspect what happened with Utica was that they didn't want to pony up for a new stadium. That's the reason Albany lost the A-C Yankees.

2007-01-10 06:35:54
96.   Raf
92 "I, mean, can you even imagine climbing stairs to play on top of parking garages?"

Having played in Riverbank State Park, & Trinity HS, I can say 'yes'

2007-01-10 06:36:50
97.   wsporter
91 MFD, Had an aunt and uncle who lived in Utica for a while (commuted to Corning) I went to a couple of Blue Sox games as a kid. It was a blast and helped convinced me that Minor league baseball was and is a spectacular experience.

While Ripken did buy an established team and move it the O's did drop a franchise to accept the "Iron Birds" into the system. For me it's great because I get to see the SI Yankees when they come through as well as Trenton at Bowie and (now) S/WB in Richmond as well.

I read somewhere that Utica is attempting to obtain a franchise in the Canadian-American League. Good luck on that one. I have a lot of great memories of Utica and the surrounding country (especially fly fishing in the canal)

I understand your reasons to dislike him but Ripken isn't a bad guy really and he is the only one right now who has the nads to stand up to Angelos who has ruined the O's franchise from a competitive POV. He does a lot of good things here that he keeps under the radar. I think you might want to look into it but far be it from me to interfere in a deep-seated, heartfelt and honest dislike. :-)

2007-01-10 06:46:38
98.   Jimmy Clark
Mike Francesa said yesterday it was terrible of YES to take his show off for the Igawa stuff. Mike tells us he probably won't make the team as a starter and will be lucky to win 10 games. I am sure Mike has spent hours studying the video tape from Japan and talking to writers in their native Japanese.
2007-01-10 07:25:10
99.   Jim Dean
96 Is it a good environment for play?

97 Where does Trenton play around here? I passed their team bus last year going south on 95 right near Aberdeen, but I couldn't figure out where they were heading.

On another note, I saw these quotes in his press conference yesterday: "Well, I was out there pitching with a bad back for most of the year," Johnson added during a news conference Tuesday at Chase Field.

"Most people would not choose to do that, but that's the kind of person I am," Johnson said. "I'm an overpaid athlete who wants to try to give something back. It may sound kind of corny, but that's where I am at."

I'm going to miss the SOB and I'm sad we never got one good post-season start from him. He's one of the greatest of all-time and we didn't get to really cheer him on our side.

And then this:

The only player from the deal who is expected to make the roster out of spring training is Vizcaíno, who has logged at least 65 appearances in each of the last five years. "His nickname is Daily, because he takes the ball daily — which fits our bullpen perfectly," Cashman said.

Insert "manager" for "bullpen", and Cash hits the nail.

2007-01-10 07:40:17
100.   rbj
Are Vizcaino and EDSP going to have to wrestle to see who gets into that day's game?
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-01-10 07:43:26
101.   Ravenscar
The Blue Sox drew fans, but Utica itself is not exactly a boom town, nor has it been since about 1950. The field has bleachers, basically. That's it. It's quaint. I actually have some pictures if anyone wants to see - I don't know enough to post them anywhere.

When the Mets were having that shakeup, I was dying for someone to get Utica's name in the mix.

As bitter as I am about Ripkin taking the team, building a stadium would not have worked at all for the area, I think - I would have to wonder if it could be supported. I don't know the exact figures for the attendance, but there are enough people gasping for money in the area that a building a stadium seems (to a liberal do-gooder like myself) like spitting at people who need actual help in a rather economically depressed area (education, healthcare, housing, etc.). Oneida and the surrounding counties have historically had the highest unemployment in the state.

All that said, when I win powerball or sell that novel and movie rights, I'm bringing a team back to Murnane.

2007-01-10 08:03:28
102.   rbj
Was the Blue Sox stadium up to par? When I lived in Columbia, SC, the local team was the Capital City Bombers (Mets' A league). They desperately needed a new stadium because the old one flooded a lot, the field was horrible (there were concerns about injuries to players) and it did not conform to the Americans' with Disabilites Act. Fortunately I move away, because a year or two later it was in the Red Sox organization and then moved to Greensboro, IIRC. The big issue was getting funding for a new park -- the Mets had an ultimatium for a new one or else. It truly was a bad park (do have some good memories though).
2007-01-10 08:30:55
103.   Ravenscar
Found it!

Pics of the Blue Sox-less stadium:

2007-01-10 08:36:24
104.   Raf
99 Riverbank is a nice park to play in. I can honestly say that whatever park they put in to replace Macombs Dam park won't be up to par with Riverbank ( Trinity is ok, they have no business putting a softball field there, but whatever...

I was bummed at what they did to Macombs, but I understand why things went down the way they did. I don't like it, but I can't say that it wasn't unexpected.

As for the Thunder, I'm not sure where you are, but the Eastern League has teams in Binghamton, Norwich, New Britain, Manchester, Portland, Trenton, Akron, Altoona, Bowie, Erie, Harrisburg, & Reading.

2007-01-10 08:40:00
105.   bp1
I went to many a game at Murnane field when I was a kid. We used to hang out along the chain link fence along right field and pester the pitchers to toss us a baseball. I think they were the Utica Blue Jays back then.
2007-01-10 08:42:08
106.   Shaun P
101 Ravenscar, if you ever need a co-investor, let me know.

102 Murnane Field was in fine shape, IIRC, but like Ravenscar said, it was basically a grandstand and bleechers, with plain old style ballfield concessions. Nothing fancy. You compare it to some of the more recently built minor league stadiums - like Mr. Ripken's - and it obviously falls short in terms of being a money-maker.

And I too don't think building an actual stadium in Utica would have been feasible at the time. Raf, I'm sure you're right re 96 - the city nor the county would have ponied up if asked.

94 Steve, the biggest problem wasn't attendance, or lack thereof - with a small, quaint facility, the team's owner wasn't making much profit even if they filled the stands every night. And Ripken did make a good offer - by which I mean a huge ton of cash.

97 MFD, I hear everything you're saying, but I this is one thing I have a hard time letting go of. My dad and I have gotten into some heated arguments about this - but I haven't been able to get over it yet.

I have no problem admitting my rationality goes out the window when someone brings up the Blue Sox and/or Ripken. =)

2007-01-10 08:43:04
107.   Jim Dean
104 Cool , thanks. I'll reserve judgement until I see the new stadium, but it's not looking good.

As for the Thunder bit, the question was for wsporter, but that's exactly it - none of those teams are south of Aberdeen, MD. So I couldn't figure out why I saw the team bus, with players aboard, heading south.

2007-01-10 08:43:14
108.   Raf
101 Having been to Utica, I agree.

102 That seems to be the case, that the Utica park wasn't up to code. A lot of these parks were replaced with new ones, partly because of ADA compliance. There seems to have been a lot of new minor league parks being constructed at the same time.

2007-01-10 08:47:26
109.   jayd
70"He's not a blower and he's not a soft-tosser," Cashman said. "He's somewhere in between."

A hummer? A zinger?

a sofblower or a bloftosser?

From the SF Chronicle:

"The Diamondbacks signed Ortiz to a four-year, $33 million contract before the 2005 season, but after he went 5-19 over 11/2 seasons in the desert, the Diamondbacks cut him while still on the hook for about $22 million, the largest contract a baseball team ever has eaten."

That would be an interesting top ten list. I know somebody must have done it.

2007-01-10 08:50:44
110.   Raf
107 Bowie is south of Aberdeen.
2007-01-10 09:01:13
111.   Jim Dean
110 There you have it - I thought it was in PA - thanks! Maybe a trip to that ballpark this summer. Anyone know if it's worth the trip?
2007-01-10 09:37:07
112.   dianagramr

would the Indians 10-year contract for Wayne Garland be on that list, at least in terms of length (I believe he still had 5 years on his contract when released)

2007-01-10 09:37:32
113.   dianagramr

would the Indians 10-year contract for Wayne Garland be on that list, at least in terms of length (I believe he still had 5 years on his contract when released)

2007-01-10 11:44:13
114.   Chyll Will
109 A fluffer? (Considering that he's likely to spend a lot of time with Mr. H. Ron Jeremy Matsui, that's not out of the question...)

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