Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
2007-05-13 12:13
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

The Yankee bats were shut out on Friday night but came back well enough on Saturday. D. Rasner and M. DeSalvo both pitched very well. Hey, the Yankees need to find the 2007 versions of Aaron Small and Shawn Chacon. For the time being, Rasner and DeSalvo are pitching well (though I have to admit, without knowing much about DeSalvo he doesn't look like he's got much stuff).

The Old Guard, Derek Jeter and Jorge Posada are carrying the load offensively, as Alex Rodriguez has tapered off and Bobby Abreu and Robinson Cano continued to struggle and Johnny Damon and Jason Giambi battle to stay healthy.

Yanks look to take the weekend series this afternoon.

Comments (253)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-05-13 12:36:44
1.   seamus
It looks as though boston's serious good luck streak may finally have bent with beckett getting hurt. I always hate to see injuries. It would be so much better if we could see a health yankees team and healthy sox team in a season long battle for the AL East.
2007-05-13 12:37:27
2.   monkeypants
Top of the order today is still Damon-Abreu. That's brutal if they don't start to get things soon. By the way, who's this Phelps person starting at 1B today? ; )
2007-05-13 12:38:19
3.   seamus
2 yeah, i am a bit mystified on how Abreu isn't batting 7th again. Otherwise the lineup looks great!
2007-05-13 12:39:42
4.   Jim Dean
Alex -

Gotta disagree on DeSalvo - if anything all he's got is stuff. His balls just move and he knows how to string a pitch sequence together. I think that's what the Yanks like about him. If anything, it seems Rasner has more straight stuff.

2007-05-13 12:44:03
5.   seamus
4 he does seem to have some descent stuff. Not overwhelming though. oh, what do i know...
2007-05-13 12:51:16
6.   cult of basebaal
I don't know if I'd call what DeSalvo has "great stuff", but I liked what I saw from him more than what I've seen from Rasner.

Here's some of what Kevin Goldstein had to say about him (and his debut) over at Baseball Prospectus:

Over the next six innings, DeSalvo would give up just one more hit, finishing the night with seven innings and just the one run. DeSalvo would walk three, including the first two batters of the third inning when his command troubles briefly appeared, and not strike out a single Mariner. It was one of the most dominating-yet-not-dominating performances you'll see, and awfully fun to watch. In the postgame press conference, DeSalvo mentioned how a pre-game meeting with catcher Jorge Posada limited his arsenal to just three pitches-–fastball, slider, changeup--in order to keep things simple. But that was a simplification in itself, as DeSalvo mixed in six pitches once you break down all the variants. He threw both a two- and four-seam fastball, with the latter sitting at 88-91, and the former featuring better movement. He also occasionally mixed in what looked like a cutter, which featured late horizontal break. His slider is more of a slurvy, show-me offering, but the changeups were special. DeSalvo's natural mechanics have both a body turn and a hiccup, both which add to the deception of his pitches, especially on his off-speed offerings. His arm action is fantastic on his straight change, and then he also throws what scouts often refer to as a "changeup off a changeup", as the pitch is another 3-6 mph less than normal change, while featuring more fade. Posada called a wonderful game, stirring up DeSalvo's arsenal, and DeSalvo himself--a player with a long record of praise for his makeup and mound demeanor--looked like a 15-year-veteran on the mound, working quickly, showing no signs of emotion either good or bad, and showing no fear by challenging hitters at every opportunity.


Despite Monday's outstanding effort, DeSalvo remains an "is what he is" guy. The kind of player who mixes pitches, changes speeds, hits his spots, and keeps hitters off balance. On another team, he'd be a solid fourth or fifth starter. With the Yankees, a team with little patience for young players that don't scream "future all-star," it's harder to say where he'll end up

2007-05-13 12:55:30
7.   Zack
I wouldn't call Beckett's blister/finger issue an jinjury per se, but who knows, in the past it has dogged him and cuased him to miss significant time. Supposidly, he was 'over them' according to Sox brass and every Sox fan, so i wouldn't red too much into them, but it does go to show you how very fortunate the Sox have been thus far...

But, its still only the 7th there

2007-05-13 12:59:19
8.   Zack
Oh, and the reason Abreu is still batting second is b/c it fits into the Joe Torre "let them work themselves out of it" school of thining, wherein if you allow a player to hit in the same spot for long enough, eventually, cost to the team aside, they will hit theselves out of a slump. Unless that player is A-Rod, Torre is insanely reluctent to move a vet from the spot they've 'earned.'
2007-05-13 13:06:50
9.   seamus
8 except that abreu was demoted to 7th in the order just last week.
2007-05-13 13:09:23
10.   OldYanksFan
O's up on the Sox 4-1 in the 7th.
2007-05-13 13:10:30
11.   Zack
9 Yeah, but just for one game. Thats also part of the method. Demote them for one game and then go back to SNAFU again :)
2007-05-13 13:11:32
12.   Zack
Crud, mariners feed on I suppose its on the road, so be it..
2007-05-13 13:12:17
13.   iicollies
Isn't 4-0?
2007-05-13 13:12:48
14.   Zack
Man, Abreu is pulling off the ball and flying open so much.
2007-05-13 13:12:51
15.   seamus
11 I was under the impression that it woudl have been more games, but that was when Giambi had to sit the next day and Abreu had to move back up. Which i thought made sense.
2007-05-13 13:13:29
16.   mschulm24
13 yeah it is 4-0
2007-05-13 13:16:57
17.   seamus
arod abreu'd that.
2007-05-13 13:17:05
18.   monkeypants
8, 9 I was just griping a bit about Abreu 2. Actually, Torre is in a bind with a player like Abreu (just like he was when Jeter was in a slump a few years ago). You assume a player of that talent will eventually right the ship. At the same tim, there is little to suggest that one or two days in a different spot in the order will actually help a batter. So either you have to consider moving him for the longer term, or just ride through the slump.

Unfortunately, right now only about three batters are producing, and the top and bottom of the lineup is hitting like crap. The only real (and it's really minor) complaint I have is Jorge batting so low in the order when he is so hot right now. He should be hitting somewhere 3-5 (maybe Damon-Jeter-Jorge-A-Rod at 1-4?).

2007-05-13 13:17:25
19.   Zack
I suppose having Abreu bat second right now is about like having Crisp bat second in the Boston lineup, which he is doing...
2007-05-13 13:18:22
20.   seamus
18 all good points.
2007-05-13 13:18:35
21.   Zack
Damon, Jeter, Jorge Arod Giambi, or switch Giambi and Jorge, either one is our best lineup right now...
2007-05-13 13:19:20
22.   mschulm24
18 i don't mind leaving posada. he is obviously comfortable with where he is hitting and if you clump all our hot hitters together that gives the pitcher an easy strectch which you don't want to do.
2007-05-13 13:21:47
23.   Zack
18See, I don't see how moving him down shouldn't happen until he rights himself. The move has less to do with it maybe helping him as that hitting 2nd or 3rd is costing the team, a lot. Abreu hasn't even walked in like 50 ABs, and having him hit in front of Jeter is really costing us runs with the way Jetes has been going of late.
2007-05-13 13:30:10
24.   OldYanksFan
13 Ooops..Yes... type. Now 5-0. Top 8th
2007-05-13 13:33:59
25.   OldYanksFan
Does anyone know more on Giambi's situation? It doesn't seem to be something that will just go away? Rest? Surgery? What is neededto make him whole again?
2007-05-13 13:36:15
26.   thelarmis
25 he apparently has custom made orthodics coming in for him next week. he'll put those in his cleats and apparently it should become a non-issue. we shall see...
2007-05-13 13:37:18
27.   monkeypants
Well, he has a bone spur in his foot (heel?). I'm not sure what the solution is in the longterm--didn't bone spurs do in DiMaggio at the end of his career?
2007-05-13 13:38:57
28.   atc
26 Why does it take the New York Yankees over a week to get custom made orthodics made and delivered?
2007-05-13 13:42:56
29.   thelarmis
28 i know, i was thinking the same exact thing! perhaps it takes the company some time to create the custom-made job...
2007-05-13 13:43:51
30.   Zack
Why does it take the Yankees past the 3rd inning to figure out Horacio Ramirez?
2007-05-13 13:44:50
31.   thelarmis
let's just hope they actually do figure out the braves castoff...
2007-05-13 13:45:52
32.   atc
The Mariner's announcer just gave me a heart attack
2007-05-13 13:46:45
33.   mschulm24
32 he does have seem to get overly excited a lot. especially on friday night when washburn was pitching.
2007-05-13 13:48:49
34.   atc
32 I think the one on Friday night was a different guy...Dave Simms or something like that. His call after the last out was slightly over the top.
2007-05-13 13:50:18
35.   OldYanksFan
I didn't find the cure, but of interest:
"When the body is deficient of calcium it begins to leach calcium from the bones. In many people this happens to be in the heel of the foot or some other weak area of the body. As the calcium is being leached, it forms an eruption. This eruption is the bone spur."

Jason. Got milk?

2007-05-13 13:51:18
36.   Zack
Ugh...Andy being hit hard, Seattle playing D, us, not so much
2007-05-13 13:52:12
37.   atc
35 Haha! Didn't Giambi used to do milk commercials before the steroids?
2007-05-13 13:52:36
38.   Zack
If Andy keeps getting hit this hard, be better figure out Ramirez darn fast...
2007-05-13 13:53:41
39.   Zack
Nice job getting out of that Andy, now lets score some runs!
2007-05-13 13:55:58
40.   atc
I swear that Dave Sims was the sideline reporter earlier and there was an old guy in the booth.
2007-05-13 13:56:21
41.   JimCobain
Yanks once again turning a guy with a 7.00 ERA into Cy Young.
2007-05-13 13:57:09
42.   rbj
40 The old guy is Dave Niehaus -- he's actually a decent announcer, though he's seemed to have gotten the Bash the Yankees memo.
2007-05-13 13:57:56
43.   mschulm24
Abreu Walked!
2007-05-13 13:58:19
44.   Zack
A walk! A walk for Bobby!
2007-05-13 14:04:07
45.   williamnyy23
McCarthy, Washburn and now Ramirez is shutting the Yankees down. Losing this game would be totally inexcusable.
2007-05-13 14:04:11
46.   seamus
frackin Os are tryin to give it up inthe 9th.
2007-05-13 14:04:36
47.   JimCobain
I know it's early, but this game has frsutration written all over it.
2007-05-13 14:05:37
48.   williamnyy23
Catchable ball...Damon should mkae that play.
2007-05-13 14:08:35
49.   OldYanksFan
Sox: Bases loaded, 1 out, 5-1.
2007-05-13 14:08:46
50.   Zack
What an idiotic move by the O's manager. their pitcher is crusing, in the 9th, than a bunt base hit error with one out, so what does he do? Brings in acrappy reliever to face Ortiz and the floodgates open, now bases loaded, 1 out, 1 in, Ray in (we know how good he is at these situations). We to try to lose Sam...
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-05-13 14:09:10
51.   OldYanksFan
Full count.
2007-05-13 14:09:44
52.   OldYanksFan
Walk. 5-2. Bases loaded, 1 out.
2007-05-13 14:09:52
53.   thelarmis
pete abe reporting that rocket might only need 2 minor league starts after his bullpen in tampa on tuesday. he might forgo the Triple A start and pitch against toronto May 29th...

starting to look precarious in boston... : /

2007-05-13 14:10:17
54.   atc
I hate the orioles
2007-05-13 14:10:22
55.   Zack
Ugh, things looking bad for us, meanwhile, Ray walks in a run, winning run at the plate only one out. I can't fathom how stupid the O's manager is
2007-05-13 14:10:47
56.   thelarmis
and it's about to unravel in seattle. ugh.
2007-05-13 14:11:50
57.   OldYanksFan
Tek doubles. 5-4. Holy shit. IBB coming. Based loaded again. 1 out.
2007-05-13 14:11:56
58.   Zack
Anyone else know full well how the game in Boston will end?
2007-05-13 14:12:17
59.   Zack
2007-05-13 14:12:52
60.   thelarmis
how deep was the fly ball to left that the runner on 2nd advanced?

i hate boston

2007-05-13 14:13:27
61.   Zack
Why managers panic like that and take out a pitcher who has shut down the other team based on a bunt error and give the other team a chance is beyond me.
2007-05-13 14:13:44
62.   Zack
Chris Ray also sucks
2007-05-13 14:15:05
63.   atc
The O's just got a huge break on that call
2007-05-13 14:15:06
64.   thelarmis
go chris ray!!!
2007-05-13 14:15:08
65.   mschulm24
bad call in boston might cost the sox the game
2007-05-13 14:15:13
66.   OldYanksFan
Force out at the plate. Close play. 2 outs. 5-4. Bases loaaded. Lugo up.
2007-05-13 14:15:30
67.   Zack
Cora grounds out, get the out at home, 2 outs, bases still loaded, lugo up
2007-05-13 14:15:47
68.   OldYanksFan
2-0 om Lugo.
2007-05-13 14:16:25
69.   Zack
Did I mention that Chris Ray sucks?
2007-05-13 14:16:49
70.   thelarmis
throw strikes, chris
2007-05-13 14:19:08
71.   williamnyy23
Red Sox come back from a 5-1 deficit...while the Yankees sleep through what should be a blowout. The division is pretty much over.
2007-05-13 14:19:10
72.   Zack
Nother GB out for us, sigh
2007-05-13 14:20:07
73.   thelarmis
what happened in boston? the scoreboard is frozen on the full count...
2007-05-13 14:20:15
74.   LI yankee
What happened in the Boston game? My Gameday froze on 3-2 to Lugo
2007-05-13 14:20:42
75.   Zack
Did I mention Ray sucks? And sam Perlazzo too? Not only does the manager totally f up the game, but then Ray walks in a run, and then throws the game away on an error...
2007-05-13 14:20:44
76.   thelarmis
forget it. just saw. oh my freaking god. this sucks big time... : (
2007-05-13 14:20:59
77.   OldYanksFan
Lugo with a chopper to the right of Milar at first. He gloves it. Throws to the pitcher running to cover first. Throw BEHIND the pitcher. 2 runs score. Error on Milar. 2nd error of the inning. Sox win 6-5.
2007-05-13 14:20:59
78.   atc
The Orioles, from top to bottom, are a disgraceful organization.
2007-05-13 14:21:07
79.   yankz
Well this really blows. Why can't this team find any consistency? Ramirez had a 7.62 ERA entering the game. He's not good.
2007-05-13 14:21:18
80.   williamnyy23
Lugo grounded to the 1B...the pitcher was late covering and dropped the ball. Two runs scored.
2007-05-13 14:21:41
81.   Zack
And another GB out for us and good defensive play by Seattle. Yeah, its going to be yet agian another one of those games...I think I better turn this off before I really get into a bad mood
2007-05-13 14:22:25
82.   thelarmis
disgusting & infuriating. i'm gonna light myself on fire now...
2007-05-13 14:22:29
83.   williamnyy23
78 I think losing three games in one week to McCarthy, Wasburn and Ramirez is a MUCH better definition of disgraceful.
2007-05-13 14:23:16
84.   OldYanksFan
The O's choke big time.
Milar, or all people, is the goat.
A simply play and the O's could have won.
Beware of poor fielding 1st basemen.
2007-05-13 14:23:43
85.   yankz
Pettitte's game WHIP is 2, and has thrown 69 pitches through 4.
2007-05-13 14:24:03
86.   OldYanksFan
My bad. Error to pitcher not Milar. It was a bad throw, but catchable.
2007-05-13 14:24:45
87.   atc
83 I won't argue with that
2007-05-13 14:25:10
88.   Zack
Have I mentioned that Chris Ray and Perlozzo suck?
2007-05-13 14:25:27
89.   williamnyy23
I actually think it's comical to suggest the Red Sox "put pressure" on the Yankees by winning. The Yankees can't even get to .500 playing weak teams...what the Red Sox are doing right now is really irrelevant.
2007-05-13 14:25:37
90.   JimCobain
Why was Millar even ranging that far out? That looked like the 2nd baseman's ball... Sigh... Meanwhile Andy is limiting the damage and it looks like the bats are all ready in Chicago. Another frustrating afternoon.
2007-05-13 14:26:13
91.   OldYanksFan
The way JD is playing, considering Mely's arm and glove, sitting JD for Melky is not that much of a downgrade.

JD needs to feel better. He looks tired. Why not sit him for 2 or 3 straight games?

2007-05-13 14:26:36
92.   mschulm24
83 mccarthy has been a top prospect for a while, washburn has been great all season and this game isn't over yet. your whining is getting really annoying.
2007-05-13 14:27:26
93.   yankz
Well, an easy inning, but I'm fully expecting to see Cy Ramirez continue his masterpiece.
2007-05-13 14:28:28
94.   Zack
The Sox had three hits going into the 9th, and just because the Catcher messes up a bunt and a guy gets on, the manager pulls the starter who was dominant,, and brings in who to face Ortiz? Not only the amazing Danys Baez, but the RIGHT HANDED Danys Baez! If you are going to be so stupid to take out your pitcher, at least get a guy who throws with the right arm in there...
2007-05-13 14:30:11
95.   williamnyy23
92 An intelligent response...thanks.
2007-05-13 14:30:35
96.   Zack
92 Doesn't matter iF Mccarthy has been a top prospect for awhile, he sucks this year. We hit Washburn pretty well the 1st time, yet get shut out the second, that is inexcusable. And the way we are hitting thus far this game, and of late, there is little to suggest they will do anything. Remember, after the 7 runs early yesterday, the Yanks couldn't do jack crap yesterday
2007-05-13 14:30:37
97.   OldYanksFan
94 Is that a Torre loss?
2007-05-13 14:33:25
98.   Zack
97 I think Sam Perlozzo isn't even worthy of a Torre loss :)
2007-05-13 14:34:46
99.   thelarmis
junior just hit #570
2007-05-13 14:35:31
100.   OldYanksFan
Abreu looks terrible. He is hitting the ball so weakly.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-05-13 14:36:21
101.   yankz
Does Jeter's stance look different to anyone else?
2007-05-13 14:36:27
102.   williamnyy23
100 I can't understand why Torre leaves him in the #2 slot, but there realyl aren't many many hitters doing their job anyway.
2007-05-13 14:37:18
103.   yankz
Jeter is unstoppable with RISP, 2 outs.
2007-05-13 14:37:35
104.   williamnyy23
3-0 count...Jeter normally takes there...I'm sure his frustration with everyone else prompted the swing.
2007-05-13 14:37:37
105.   OldYanksFan
Wow. Jetes swinging 3-0. That's very rare.
2007-05-13 14:37:42
106.   thelarmis
2007-05-13 14:37:50
107.   yankz
Now an A-Bomb
2007-05-13 14:37:58
108.   Zack
Well, thank God we have DJ!
2007-05-13 14:38:07
109.   yankz
Damn. So close
2007-05-13 14:38:33
110.   Zack
damn, crappy luck continues.
2007-05-13 14:39:09
111.   OldYanksFan
Man. All of a sudden ARod has warning track power. It seems like he has flied out to the CF warning track every game of late.
2007-05-13 14:41:56
112.   OldYanksFan
Aside from the 2 blow-outs, our pitching in the last 2 weeks has been outstanding. Our losing is all on the offense now.
2007-05-13 14:42:29
113.   williamnyy23
This has been the kind of game the Yankees haven't been winning this year. By my count, they have only won 4 low scoring/close games (not including games like the Indians when they game back). They are still getting their blow-outs as in the past, but can not win the close ones. That's a troubling trend.
2007-05-13 14:42:38
114.   bbfan1

That's not luck. A broken bat bloop hit is luck. Not hitting the ball far enough is just that, not hitting the ball far enough.

Not everthing that doesn't go your way is bad luck. The word luck doesn't mean what you think it means.

2007-05-13 14:43:35
115.   mschulm24
jeter got lazy there
2007-05-13 14:44:20
116.   williamnyy23
114 Agreed...if the Yankees lose, poorly performing hitters are to blame, not luck.
2007-05-13 14:44:48
117.   rbj
Ouch. Obviously all these errors means that Jeter can't handle the pressure of playing in NY. Yankees will have to trade him.

Er, sorry about that, it appears Steve Philips was channeling through me some how. Now I need a shower.

2007-05-13 14:44:57
118.   williamnyy23 many poor throws did Phelps make on that run-down. I'm glad Jeter didn't give him the ball again.
2007-05-13 14:45:13
119.   mschulm24
116 yeah, hopefully they can build off of last inning.
2007-05-13 14:45:43
120.   OldYanksFan
115 Really. No reason to go backhand there. He had time to get in front of the ball.
2007-05-13 14:46:43
121.   williamnyy23
Giambi really needs to get going here...
2007-05-13 14:48:05
122.   williamnyy23
I really hope Giambi's slump isn't related to the injury. The Yankees NEED his bat. I don't think they could survive without it.
2007-05-13 14:50:45
123.   JimCobain
two runners on and 1 out and yet I still feel they won't tie up the game...
2007-05-13 14:51:04
124.   Zack
114 Actually, the word luck means exactlly what I think it means. And thats why I use it the way I do. Maybe it doens't mean what you think it means, so don't tell me what I think.

Luck, as defined by the OED, is "Fortune good or ill; the fortuitous happening of events favourable or unfavourable to the interests of a person;lso, the imagined tendency of chance (esp. in matters of gambling) to produce events continuously favourable or continuously unfavourable; the friendly or hostile disposition ascribed to chance at a particular time. In generalized sense: Chance regarded as a cause or bestower of success and failure."

I would say that luck has a lot to do with wheather A-Rod flys out to deep center or whether the ball carries just a bit further, whether balls happen to bounce certain ways so that a fielder can make a play or not, whether a catcher happens to get the right grip or not to throw the ball. Yeah, skill plays a lot to do with it, but luck does too. The number of factors that go into determining whether a ball goes out of the park or not are the same as whether a broken bat looper falls in or not, hard hit or not. So maybe you don't think what you think it means (inconceivable!)

And yes, 116, if we lose, its not the fault of luck, but luck plays its part. Our crappy team has more to do with it though

2007-05-13 14:51:17
125.   rsmith51
122 If Abreu and Damon start hitting how they are supposed to, Minky keeps up his hot streak, and the pitchers continue to ...

Ok, maybe they need Giambi.

2007-05-13 14:51:53
126.   Zack
Nice, pitching change. Cy Ramirez out of the game...
2007-05-13 14:53:37
127.   williamnyy23
Minky hits one out for Mom?
2007-05-13 14:55:11
128.   JimCobain
What a shock.
2007-05-13 14:55:36
129.   OldYanksFan
I'll bet a lot of guys would rather donate 10k to breast cancer, and get to use a 'regular' bat.
2007-05-13 14:55:40
130.   williamnyy23
127...or a 3-6-3.

123 I want to believe.

2007-05-13 14:55:41
131.   its430
There was no doubt in my mind Minky would hit into that DP.
2007-05-13 14:55:45
132.   Zack
2007-05-13 14:56:10
133.   its430
Who did a better job of setting up that DP? Hargrove for the pitching change? Or Torre with the pinch-hitter?
2007-05-13 14:56:39
134.   atc
So Joe actually thinks that Mdgdfgdf is a better hitter than Phelps?
2007-05-13 14:57:17
135.   mschulm24
134 i think he just puts way too much faith in lefty righty match ups
2007-05-13 14:59:41
136.   williamnyy23
133 134 Based on the splits so far this season, DM was probably a better choice than Phelps. I love to jump on Torre, but this ones not on him.
2007-05-13 15:00:11
137.   williamnyy23
136 Not to mention....plays like that might very well justify DM playing over Phelps anyway.
2007-05-13 15:01:33
138.   Zack
Our problems seem to have switched from starting pitching to BP and offense...
2007-05-13 15:02:00
139.   rsmith51
131 Two weeks ago that was my thought. Now, it is "I hope his hot hitting continues." I guess that was Torre's too. I think Phelps would have been a better choice, but Torre isn't making that call unless Dougie was still on the interstate. Even then it is not a sure thing.
2007-05-13 15:02:11
140.   yankz
The announcers just got way too excited about a 2-out single.
2007-05-13 15:02:30
141.   seamus
138 our bad luck seems to be that we don't have good synergy. When our pitching struggles, our hitting doesn't seem to be making up. When our hitting struggles, our pitching isn't quite good enough.
2007-05-13 15:02:32
142.   williamnyy23
138 That is the usually the lament of a .500 team.
2007-05-13 15:02:39
143.   yankz
Oh how badly I want to see him picked off.
2007-05-13 15:03:12
144.   seamus
142 so what? We are a .500ish team at the moment.
2007-05-13 15:03:29
145.   rsmith51
I remember when Womack was on the Yanks, I could predict that he was going to hit it to the 2b. 9 times out of ten he seemed to.
2007-05-13 15:03:40
146.   yankz
Whoa, Bruney in a close game?
2007-05-13 15:03:56
147.   williamnyy23
144 Which was exactly my point.
2007-05-13 15:04:44
148.   rsmith51
$200M doesn't buy what it used to.
2007-05-13 15:07:01
149.   williamnyy23
If the Yanks lose and drop to 17-19, the 2005 security blanket is out the was all up-hill from that point two years ago.
2007-05-13 15:07:12
150.   williamnyy23
If the Yanks lose and drop to 17-19, the 2005 security blanket is out the was all up-hill from that point two years ago.
Show/Hide Comments 151-200
2007-05-13 15:08:19
151.   seamus
150 no matter how you spin it, from 17-19 isn't any harder than 2005 was.
2007-05-13 15:08:38
152.   williamnyy23
The problem with Cano...2-0 count...swings at a pitch over his head...flies out lazily to left.

Instead of walking to lead-off the inning, he makes another futile out. Cano's horrible start has me especially worried because it not only impacts this season, but makes me a little nervous about the long-term.

2007-05-13 15:12:24
153.   williamnyy23
151 It is a lot harded in MANY way. Namely, in 2005 they were 4.5 behind Boston, not 8. When you consider they wound up tied in 2005, that difference is very significant.

Having said that, my main point is we only have one more loss in the 2005 savings account.

2007-05-13 15:13:40
154.   seamus
152 he has the same issues Soriano had swinging out of the zone.
2007-05-13 15:15:08
155.   seamus
153 the difference depends more on how Boston does from here on in than where they stand now. But even so, that only addresses winning the AL East. Making the playoffs remains no more difficult.
2007-05-13 15:15:25
156.   williamnyy23
154 Without the power though. Cano will not be a quality player if he becomes Soriano minus power.
2007-05-13 15:16:21
157.   seamus
156 they are not comparable players except for that tendency. Cano is a much better fielder for one. Cano also hits better for average and uses the opposite field better. And sori has the power and more speed.
2007-05-13 15:16:28
158.   mschulm24
156 and speed
2007-05-13 15:17:11
159.   williamnyy23
155 I'm talking about the I've posted before, it might be time to shift our attention to the Wild Card.
2007-05-13 15:18:29
160.   thelarmis
c'mon April A-Rod!
2007-05-13 15:19:16
161.   seamus
159 why would you 'shift'? Eyes onboth prizes until you are eliminated.
2007-05-13 15:19:47
162.   williamnyy23
156 157 The speed is a secondary skill. Offense and defense are the name of the game. My point is that Cano's lack of selectivity has severely deteriorated. My hope is it is a temporary problem and not the result of the league adjusting to him.
2007-05-13 15:20:44
163.   williamnyy23
161 It's not a matter of "shifting"...just a statement of my realistic expectations...not my hopes.
2007-05-13 15:21:48
164.   williamnyy23
Yikes...2006 Arod...that's the LAST thing this team needs right now.
2007-05-13 15:23:32
165.   Mattpat11
I come back from Mothers Day to see this. We were told it was "too early" to worry in April. Because April games don't count.

Its May 13. The Yankees still suck. Is it time to worry?

2007-05-13 15:24:13
166.   seamus
162 and i didn't disagree.
2007-05-13 15:24:58
167.   Zack
Its amazing that Pettitte has pitched as well as he has this game considering how hard he was getting hit at first. Too bad the team seems to really not want to get him wins in one way or another
2007-05-13 15:25:57
168.   williamnyy23
Think Andy Pettitte is thinking "I came back for this" as he jogs off? He could lose games due to a bad bullpen and no offense back home in Houston.
2007-05-13 15:26:37
169.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
162 except Cano is actually seeing more pitches this year per atbat than in the past 2 seasons:

3.05 in 2005, 3.22 last season, 3.53 this season.

It's not a problem of selectivity. I'd guess that maybe he';s trying to be too selective, and is letting pitches go that he would've hit before. Of course he's also missing much more, it seems, when he does swing.

2007-05-13 15:28:13
170.   williamnyy23
169 Your last point was correct. He is swinging and missing (and striking out) A LOT more. If that's why he is seeing more pitches, it's a bad thing.
2007-05-13 15:28:18
171.   seamus
169 good point. Maybe this is one of those rough adjustment periods. Being more selective may cause a temporary slump.
2007-05-13 15:28:50
172.   Zack
So general question: Now that Clemens is coming back (although can he still reconsider?), does that mean Torre is pretty much assured of his job? Not that I think hes in danger, but does Clemens and his Torre endorsement mean that its that much harder to fire him?

What are we going to be, 8 games back? That is pretty damn hard to make up. They win the games we aren't..

2007-05-13 15:30:14
173.   Mattpat11
Oh good. Walk Guillen.
2007-05-13 15:30:53
174.   williamnyy23
172 Torre is here for the year...while the bullpen mismanagement did hurt the team early, it is becoming more and more clear that the players just aren't good enough. I think Torre rides it out and the Yankees go in a new direction in 2008.
2007-05-13 15:32:46
175.   williamnyy23
Asking for a win is probably too much...just PLEASE don't make it come down to Mientkiewicz.
2007-05-13 15:35:49
176.   Mattpat11
8 games.

I swear I'll punch the first one to bring up 78.

2007-05-13 15:37:32
177.   WeMissPaulie
This is agony. These guys are just anemic. Whats it going to take to get some life into these guys?

And Boston came back from 5-0 to win in the 9th.

2007-05-13 15:38:43
178.   Mattpat11
2007-05-13 15:40:29
179.   Mattpat11
Kay just called Matsui quick. He's getting gunned down
2007-05-13 15:43:47
180.   Mattpat11
And its up to Stinky. At least he's hot.
2007-05-13 15:43:58
181.   yankz
I have never heard any announcer get as excited about anything as much as this jackass for Seattle.
2007-05-13 15:44:28
182.   zanderthegreat
i believe in minkY! (actually, no i don't, here comes a srikeout)
2007-05-13 15:44:32
183.   seamus
oh yeah. it always comes down to mink-rod.
2007-05-13 15:44:34
184.   WeMissPaulie
C'mon Minky
2007-05-13 15:45:48
185.   WeMissPaulie
I smell 8 games back.
2007-05-13 15:46:11
186.   yankz
Was there ever any doubt?
2007-05-13 15:46:28
187.   Mattpat11
Eight games. EIGHT GAMES BACK.

Will SOMEONE light a fucking fire under this team? They play like they're under water.

2007-05-13 15:47:12
188.   fansince77
Did the Mariners just win the World Series. It must be great to have such low standards that you pop a freakin' blood vessel over a May win.
2007-05-13 15:47:37
189.   yankee23
181 Seriously! And I quote, "seeing JJ, if there's a better closer in the game, I don't know." Really? JJ Putz? A pitching machine could strike out Scrabble if it hit 98.
2007-05-13 15:47:39
190.   williamnyy23
Jim Dean isn't here, so it's safe to ask...with crappy lefties shutting the team down, could this team use Gary Sheffield. I know Cashman was building for the future, but it is starting to look like the future is coming pretty fast.

This is an awful loss in what to this point has been awful season. Sure it could get better, but all signs point to it getting much worse.

2007-05-13 15:47:52
191.   seamus
tough game. tough weekend.
2007-05-13 15:48:31
192.   Zack
Wow, what a waste. 8 games is 8 games, and we've only managed to lsoe ground while playing Seattle and Texas, which is terrible.
2007-05-13 15:48:46
193.   Mattpat11
190 Obviously you didn't see the potential to get the next Jaret Wright.
2007-05-13 15:50:00
194.   WeMissPaulie
I am so over this.
2007-05-13 15:50:11
195.   Mattpat11
192 I always said we had to win 10 from Texas and Seattle. We won 8.
2007-05-13 15:50:13
196.   rsmith51
I don't think Minky can catch up to a 98 mph fastball.

In his defense strike 1 was not close to being a strike.

2007-05-13 15:50:46
197.   yankz
190 Really? What signs are those? Hughes and Clemens coming back? Because I don't think the O will continue to suck. Maybe Abreu, and we know Mink will, but they're going to score more than 1 run a game.
2007-05-13 15:51:20
198.   Zack
Where the heck would we put Sheff? With Giambi's continuing injuries, he pretty much has to DH these days. So no, Sheff ain't the answer to this team's ills. If Cano, Abreu, Damon, and, to a lesser extent, Matsui, can't start contributing to their levels, Babe Ruth couldn't help this team (well, okay, maybe Babe Ruth, but you get my point)...
2007-05-13 15:52:44
199.   rsmith51
Has a move like signing Clemens ever worked out? Not trying to be negative, but it would be nice if it had happened before. It seems like moves like that don't work.

I guess you could say it worked for the Astros, but the AL East >> NL Central.

2007-05-13 15:52:46
200.   yankee23
196 I totally agree. Good thing he pinch hit for Phelps earlier... I don't know if you heard the Seattle announcers, they are so unbearably one-sided it's hard to watch.
Show/Hide Comments 201-250
2007-05-13 15:53:27
201.   WeMissPaulie
Everyone always says that "they will score runs"....well its about time. Seriously, 8 games down with Chic/Mets/Boston coming up? Thats scary they way they're playing.
2007-05-13 15:54:05
202.   rsmith51
As frustrating as it is. It is nice seeing the starting pitchers doing much better.
2007-05-13 15:54:50
203.   yankz
199 I don't get it. Has signing a pitcher who has been stellar the past 3 years ever worked out? I mean, this puts it pretty well:
2007-05-13 15:55:20
204.   williamnyy23
190 So, your positive signs are Hughes and Clemens returning in three weeks. Will we be 9 games back by then? 10? 11?
2007-05-13 15:55:37
205.   yankz
201 They did score 7 last night, believe it or not. Even Jeter and Posada cooled off vs. Ramirez today, maybe he was just dealing.
2007-05-13 15:56:16
206.   yankz
204 All I asked was for the negative signs you continue to point towards. You're the psychic around here, I don't know how far they'll be back.
2007-05-13 15:57:37
207.   Zack
205 but they also got all of three hits once Batista left the game in the third
2007-05-13 15:57:59
208.   williamnyy23
202 The pitching has picked up...but it has exclusively been against Seattle and Texas.
2007-05-13 15:58:41
209.   yankz
207 Seattle has a very good bullpen. Do people really think A-Rod, Giambi, Matsui, and Co. forgot how to hit?
2007-05-13 15:59:20
210.   OldYanksFan
190 Shef isn't the issue. Cano, JD, Abreu, Melky, Minky and Matsui are all batting under .260 (and some WAY under). That 60% of our starting team.

As Jetes says, you gotta play the games. On paper, we have an awesome team. However, on the field, they look crappy.

We just had another better-then-quality start. Our pitching is coming around, and Roger and Phil are coming soon.

The team is not hitting. We have high scoring blowouts, which keeps our RS high, but we lose the close ones.

Oh. And ARod is mini-slumping and OPS slumping. He's hitting singles, but few XB hits. His BA has dropped 60 pts in 2 weeks.

Giambi may be hurt. Posada will ge hitting 70-100 pts less by end-of-season.

We are in deep shit. Time to root against Detroit, Cleveland and Minn.

2007-05-13 16:02:02
211.   williamnyy23
206 Bad signs:

1) Mariano has struggled early.
2) The bullpen has been generally bad.
3) Giambi has a nagging injury that has prompted an 0-18 stretch. Foot problems seldom go away without significant rest/treatment.
4) Cano has regressed significantly.
5) Abreu is having a historic slump and seemingly lost 100% of his power.
6) Even BAD lefties have had success against the team.
7) There are still at least 3 weeks of rookies in the staff.
8) Damon has also had nagging injuries that might linger all season.
9) The team just went through a stretch againt bad teams and didn't get over .500. They now have a very difficult stretch approaching.

How many more do you need?

2007-05-13 16:03:02
212.   Mattpat11
197 We have to be in contention by the time Roger and Hughes show up.
2007-05-13 16:04:35
213.   Mattpat11
We're going to have to sweep Boston next week. 2 out of 3 won't cut it.
2007-05-13 16:04:55
214.   weeping for brunnhilde
205 Sure, but a feast-or-famine offense is unacceptable.

Better to score four runs a game than 8 one day and zero the next.

2007-05-13 16:06:13
215.   weeping for brunnhilde
207 Yes, absolutely.

That was a very bad sign; they just shut down after the fourth or whenever it was that Battista came out.

Not acceptable.

2007-05-13 16:06:58
216.   williamnyy23
210 Agreed...the division is out of the question. Sure, miracles can happen, but that's wishful thinking. Realistically, the Yankees only hope is the Wild Card.
2007-05-13 16:07:14
217.   WeMissPaulie
Contention? Its getting late.....but to get that, someone had better kick some ass tonight on the locker room...get these guys motivated in a HUGE way. On paper, yes, they are the best, so we know they can do it, but someone needs to light a fire under these guys. NOW. We cant wait for Clemens/Hughes.
2007-05-13 16:07:48
218.   yankz
The only ones of those I'm worried about are 3), 5), and 8). Giambi apparently is getting something for the foot, so I'll withhold judgment. Abreu's slump might be legit, as I noted. Damon, who knows?

Mo hasn't gotten consistent work and says he'll be fine. The bullpen has been exhausted by bad SP early, and the SP has done well recently, which has rested the pen. Cano always starts terribly; the kid was probably the best hitter in the game after returning from the injury last year, and is more patient this year, so I think it'll turn around. How many bad lefties have done well? Every team has bad offensive days (like the Yanks today). The rookies have, lately, pitched better than the vets. Number 9 is addressed by your previous 8.

2007-05-13 16:08:26
219.   williamnyy23
215 And what shut them down? A lefty...a rookie lefty no less. When Arod doesn't hit, this team has no RH power. That's a huge flaw and something for which Cashman should be held accountable.
2007-05-13 16:09:13
220.   weeping for brunnhilde
209 Alex had no excuse for striking out in that spot.

Jorgie had a great at-bat; he gave himself a chance to get a hit but struck out on a nasty and unhittable splitter.

Alex striking out when he did was exasperating because he just got blown away on straight fastballs with the tying run on second base.

You have to put the ball in play in that situation, I don't care how fast the guy throws.

Choke up if you have to, only don't strike out.

2007-05-13 16:10:47
221.   williamnyy23
218 But those are among the most important ones.

Also, Cano is not more patient this year...instead of lining singles and doubles on the first pitch, he is now striking out on pitches all over the place. If you watch a Cano AB, he rarely sees strikes. He takes some balls, but mostly swings at bad pitches.

2007-05-13 16:15:30
222.   Mattpat11
218 These days cannot happen when you are seven games out. Thats what costs a team the pennant.
2007-05-13 16:18:31
223.   williamnyy23
I really wish one player would show anger. This team seems "frustrated" by its poor play, but not all that upset. Except for Posada, I haven't seen anything close to anger. Frustration and exasperation are for losers...and that's all this team seems to express.
2007-05-13 16:21:01
224.   williamnyy23
Here's the problem with the Yankees...Abreu and Cano need to see some bench time. Unfortunately, the team has no bench, so Torre can't do anything but send them out there.

If the theme for April was Torre's poor bullpen management, then May could be about Cashman's poor bench management.

2007-05-13 16:43:50
225.   williamnyy23
Some good news already...the Indians blew a lead in the 9th...the Yankees remain 4.5 behind for the Wild Card.

How the mighty have fallen.

2007-05-13 16:57:41
226.   monkeypants
224 I've groaned about Torre all year, but that's a good point. An early trope by true believers as that the team had 'more than enough offense' to carry Stinky at 1B and a terrible bench. This was at best sort of true, assuming the starting 8 hit as well as expected. But a few injuries and slumps (not unexpected considering the starting line-up's median age) and the lack of depth really shows (and the roster inflexibility is more exposed--three 1B/DH simply limits bench options).
2007-05-13 17:05:45
227.   OldYanksFan
JD is a gamer and is managing weak, Mattie Alou type singles to keep from totally sucking. I respect the guy a lot, but we need him at 900-100%. 15 day DL him and bring up KT. Send him to the Bahamas. Let him rest, heal and come back fired up.

Abreu is playing scared. He needs to sit and watch. Sit and watch until he WANTS to be at bat in a crucial situation. He's batting .235 will no signs of improvement. The fire under his ass is sitting on the bench. Play Melky.

I would sit Cano and let him watch Cairo. Cairo has little talent but is smart and plays the game well. Cano is full of talent but does not play the game well. Let him watch Cairo for 3 days in a row and then promise Joe he will walk once a game.

I'd rather see Cairo, Melky and KT play hard and lose, then Cano and Abreu play stupid and JD playing at 60%, and lose.

I don't want to lose, but I can deal with it. I can't deal with playing an injured JD, an Abreu shitting in his shorts and a Cano swinging at balls over his head and in the dirt.

Joe is good at NOT pissing off his players.
At this point, he needs them pissed off.

2007-05-13 17:29:38
228.   WeMissPaulie
Yeah...someone (Jeter) needs to get super pissed and make a statement that this is totaly unacceptble. Sit some people and bring some hungry guys up from AAA for a few games.
2007-05-13 17:34:58
229.   Jim Dean
Wow, there's alot of negativity around here. Enjoy the weather! It was bee-u-tiful today.
2007-05-13 17:40:14
230.   seamus
It might not hurt for folks to put our current standing in REAL perspective. There are thousands of stats that could be thrown out to show that the Yanks are still very much in this AL East race. But here is one of many examples. In 2006, on May 13, the division AL leaders were the Yanks, White Sox, and Rangers. Here is how the eventual division winners contrasted with these teams (In Yanks case I compared with Boston). The Yanks are currently 8 games back, but only 4.5 games out of the wildcard.

Yankees +10.5 games on Boston
Minnesota +12.5 games on Chicago
Oakland +15 on Texas

me thinks we complain too much.

2007-05-13 17:44:39
231.   seamus
230 On average, the Yankees have gained 7 games each of the last five years on Boston between May 13th and the end of the season.
2007-05-13 17:46:44
232.   cult of basebaal
{229] Ugh, I don't know, any day you make Bill Bavasi look good, seems ugly by my reckoning ...
2007-05-13 18:17:29
233.   Paul in Boston
Sometimes I just can't watch the end of the game, and this was one of those times. At 4pm one could reasonably hope for gaining a game in the standings, or at worst, not falling further behind. Given the incredible Sox comeback and the pathetic performance the Yankees display against lefties this year, it was increasingly apparent that the opposite would happen. I snapped it off after A-rod struck out.

To quote Charlie Brown, "Argghhh..."

2007-05-13 19:21:39
234.   weeping for brunnhilde
231 I agree with you, seamus. By no means do I think the season is over, or even in grave peril.

I am, however, exasperated by a team that scores 8 runs one day and zero the next, but that seems to be the Yanks' MO for the last five seasons so I'm used to it, I suppose.

2007-05-13 20:39:33
235.   Schteeve
People who say shit like "Alex had no excuse to strike out there" are annoying. He had an excuse, it's called

"hitting a major league pitcher is very hard to do, which is why even the very best hitters of all time get on base less than half the time over the course of their career."

2007-05-13 20:40:36
236.   Schteeve
Bringing up hungry guys from AAA always works.
2007-05-13 20:47:55
237.   weeping for brunnhilde
235 Whatever, Schteeve.

I'm annoying.

That said, if I admit I was being a bit hyperbolic when I said no excuse can you perhaps see your way to taking my point?

Some situations call for shortening one's swing and hence reducing the likelihood of a K and increasing the likelihood of putting the bat on the ball.

Such an approach likewise reduces the chance of hitting the ball over the fence, but when the tying run may be procured by means of a bloop single, perhaps that's a worthwhile forfeiture.

Please let me know why this observation/grievance is as preposterous as you seem to believe it is.

Thanking you in advance and apologizing preemptively for any annoyance my grievance might cause.

2007-05-13 20:50:35
238.   weeping for brunnhilde
235 And by the way, you may have noticed that I commended Jorgie's at-bat, even though he too struck out.

Why do you suppose that is?

How would you compare the two at-bats if called upon to do so?

I would submit that although both at-bats resulted in a K, they were by no means of equal quality.

One was exasperating, the other was a laudable effort.

Do you have eyes to see?

2007-05-13 21:19:19
239.   Schteeve
238 No as I a matter of fact, I lost my sight when I was a child, from the Yellow Fever. Thanks for being so insensitive!
2007-05-13 21:24:19
240.   Hugh Jorgan
Post alert!! Annoying Sox fan alert!! I am really surprised by how many of you are already throwing in the towel. Are you kidding me? You are the Yankees, surely at some stage your team will win 40 out of 60 games and make it close. If you really want to know about suffering, become a Sox fan. Even after 2004, great starts like ours are never, ever, ever considered a right to win the division.
2007-05-13 21:44:02
241.   Max Nomad
238 It hurts a bit when A-Rod Ks with the runners on, but he's a strikeout hitter, and the reason for most of his success are his memorized mechanics. Move away from that and he might slump the rest of the year. It's the same reason players K looking, because they don't want to hurt themselves in the long run. They've been trained that way (even Beltran in the NLCS didn't swing with season on the line).
I've got no problem with that. I know that not everyone can be David Eckstein and squeeze every ounce of ability out of themselves for each AB. And Eckstein uses his game that way because he would be in MLB if he didn't. And if anyone works harder than A-Rod (except maybe Clemens) to reach their potential, point him out to me.

240 Damn, I agree with the Sox fan, and even Jim Dean :P

Chizill ma homeslizzies, baseball is all about the WAIT. You feel me?

2007-05-13 21:48:57
242.   Max Nomad
241 I meant that Eckstein would not be in MLB, if you can't catch that yourself.
2007-05-13 21:51:02
243.   Hugh Jorgan
I like the banter site because I can always get a good discussion going here, but geez most of you have already given up. I may not be as sabermetrically inclined as many of you but two things I do know is this...1) the yankees can still hit the crap out of the ball and 2) Your starting pitching is improving and surely has to continue to improve...could it have got any worse? Your biggest worry will be your pen and your defense. Your pen could be done by August.
2007-05-13 21:51:08
244.   yankz
Yeah, I can't believe I'm with a Sox fan and Jimmy D. Isn't this why we watch? To see the "aura and mystique" and all that? Just setting us up for a magical year, IMO.
2007-05-13 21:58:44
245.   Hugh Jorgan
In spite of who you follow, we are all fans of baseball. Heck, I like watching 7 yr. olds play t-ball as much as I like watching a good high school game. Right now the Sox are kicking ass and taking numbers, however I have no doubt the Yankees will make it interesting in the next 2 months.
2007-05-13 22:10:22
246.   BklynBmr
It's game 36 fer Cripes sake... wait... where am I posting? Bronx Banter or craigslist?
2007-05-13 22:31:17
247.   weeping for brunnhilde
239 Sorry, I just don't quite know how I can offer legitimate criticisms of the games as I see them without being accused of being too demanding.

My purpose wasn't to pick on Alex, but rather to express my opinion of a particularly critical at-bat of his.

I'm not expecting him to hit a home run every time, or never to strike out--far from it.

I'm just suggesting that he had a poor at bat when his team needed him to have a quality at bat.

As I say, Jorgie still got beat, but he gave it his best shot. Alex didn't seem to me to have given it his best shot. He tried, sure, but I'm merely pointing out an area for improvement, which is to say choke up in such situations.

241 I understand what you're saying and if you're saying he's incapable of changing his approach in accordance with the situation without damaging his swing, I can buy that, but then I'd suggest that a truly great hitter should be able to do that.

And I'm glad you brought up Beltran, because that was another example of a really poor at bat in a really critical spot.

He let that fastball go by him and then couldn't pull the trigger on the hook, even though we all knew it was coming.

I'm not saying he's a bad person, or that Alex is a bad person, merely that the at-bats were poor.

And I can understand striking out looking for the sake of the long run, but I also think that a really good player should be able to adjust, to bear down with two strikes and just concentrate on making contact.

I hate seeing people strike out in critical situations by taking mighty swings.

To me, the ability to reduce one's chances of striking out as the situation dictates is nothing more than a fundamental skill of baseball and I don't think it's too demanding to ask that all players at least work on this part of their game.

Wasn't that the point of pepper, which they evidently don't play anymore?

2007-05-14 03:12:44
248.   seamus
i wish arod knew how to hit.

Are we seriosly having these discussions? Look, we'll get hot. And if we don't, then we lose. It sucks but it doesn't really help anything to overreact and become super negative. Just take a deep breath and read my posts at 230 and 231. If, on AVERAGE, we are +7 games between May 13 and year end over the last five years, all we need to do to compete for the AL East is to do what we usually do (assuming history holds up). Heck win 95 games and we'll be in the playoffs one way or another.

2007-05-14 08:52:04
249.   weeping for brunnhilde
248 Seamus. Please do not mistake me.

I am not saying Alex doesn't know how to hit.

Nor am I becoming super negative.

I'm saying nothing about the team's long-term welfare, merely that Alex had a bad at-bat at a time when the team and its fans really needed him to have a good at-bat.

I'm not faulting the result of the at-bat, which was a strikeout, but rather his approach, which to my eyes made a strikeout inevitable.

I lament the fact that players don't shorten up with two strikes, especially when a single would plate the tying run.

Please let me know why my premise (that players should shorten up with two strikes) is so beyond the pale.

Really, I'd like to know what I'm missing and why this kind of observation elicits such irritation.

I'm not trying to be antagonistic, I'm just watching the baseball game and offering my opinion on what I see.

2007-05-14 09:19:58
250.   seamus
249 i didn't mean to sound so contrite. It wasn't really you as much as some others who were being real negative. I just don't see how ARod isn't aware of the technique of shortening the swing and I'm sure he decided not to for some reason or other.
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2007-05-14 09:27:06
251.   weeping for brunnhilde
250 Thanks for your reply, seamus!

"I just don't see how ARod isn't aware of the technique of shortening the swing and I'm sure he decided not to for some reason or other. "

Ok, fair enough, but isn't this curious?

I can accept that perhaps there's a reason, but I'd love to know what that reason is!

It's just that I learned all of these fundamentals growing up (both in little league and from that weekly show with Tommy Lasorta as the Baseball Wizard) and really took those lessons to heart.

So whenever I see what appears to me to be poor fundamental baseball, I get alarmed because if I could learn these things, why don't the pros seem to have mastered them?

I wish someone in the press would ask Alex the simple question, "I've noticed you're not very good at shortening your swing with two strikes and can't believe a guy of your talent doesn't have the bat control to do it, so what gives?"

That's all, I'd just sincerely love to know what gives.

2007-05-14 09:41:19
252.   weeping for brunnhilde
250 And one more thing (sorry to beat a dead horse). Luis Gonzales, in the immediate afterglow of having won the world series, was asked about his at-bat.

The first thing out of the man's mouth was about how he just didn't want to strike out. Above all else, don't strike out.

And to facilitate that plan, he further reported that he choked up for the first time in as long as he could remember.

If he could do it, why can't Alex?

I've also heard some of the oldtime players report that it used to be embarrassing to strike out, that there was a stigma attached to it, and that these days the attitude is much more cavalier.

I remember a player reporting that he and his brother used to play a game where they'd pitch to each other and if you swung and missed just once, you had to change sides.

The point, of course, was to place a premium on making contact.

I'm just lamenting the general state of affairs where we don't even have expectations that players can do this anymore so we let them slide.

We shouldn't let them slide, they're major league baseball players.

2007-05-14 09:53:30
253.   seamus
251 252 yeah, there may be an issue in that they don't focus on contact as much as players should. I don't know that you or I are going to be able to tell them something they don't know. But that doesn't mean you are not right.

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