Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Chew on This
2007-09-19 09:30
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

Derek Jeter passed Bernie Williams on the all-time Yankee hit-list two nights ago. I've been thinking a lot about Bernie recently. What is he doing? (He's actually playing at a benefit concert this Saturday night) Does he watch the games? That kind of thing. Some of my questions were answered in this piece by Wayne Coffey in last Sunday's Daily News.

Alex Rodriguez was supposed to get a day off a month ago when the Yankees were in California. It's understandable why he hasn't, though it now seems time to give him a breather. He's had bad at-bats for the past few games. Last night, in particular, looked ripped out of the 2005-06 playoff handbook--missing fat pitches, chasing poor ones. Let's hope Torre rests him soon. Moreover, it'd be nice to see Posada get some time off as well.

Speaking of Jorge, I was e-mailing with Joe Sheehan last night and he posed the question: Has Posada ever had a great post-season? Not a fine isolated series--he was good last year against the Tigers--but a real strong couple of series?

Finally, here are a couple of things to check out: Joel Sherman's post about filling-in for S. Waldman on the radio last week; Jonah Keri on 100 players you love to hate, and John Heylar on Dr. James Andrews.

Comments (57)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-09-19 10:03:40
1.   Mattpat11
Barring collapse, Jeter will pass Mantle and Ruth next year, and The Iron Horse in 09.

That's amazing

2007-09-19 10:09:05
2.   Rob Middletown CT
Just going from memory, I don't think Jorge has good numbers in the post-season. I think he's generally been pretty bad.

ARod could use some rest, definitely. As much as I'd like them to win the division, that cannot be Torre's priority, and I think he knows it.

2007-09-19 10:12:48
3.   Josh Wilker
I was sort of stunned to hear last weekend that Jeter has more hits than Pete Rose had at the same age.
2007-09-19 10:31:55
4.   monkeypants
0 How about this question: while A-Rod is having an offensive season for the ages (OPS+ 181, RC 154), is Jorge actually the stronger MVP candidate (OPS+ 161, RC 112), given his position?
2007-09-19 10:31:55
5.   Marcus
I wonder if Bernie would accept an invitation to play the "Star Spangled Banner" on guitar before one of the playoff games? Imagine the crowd reaction to that. I can't recall anyone playing the national anthem on guitar before a sporting event, but hey, why not?
2007-09-19 10:35:41
6.   Sliced Bread
Jorge has had his share of huge hits in the postseason, and don't forget he closed the deal on Jeter's flip play, laying down the tag.

Has he strung together a series of great postseason series in the same year? Not really. But few players have. Generally, somebody gets hot for a series, then they're contained in the next series, and somebody else has to step up. Also, how much offensive production should be expected from a catcher in the postseason, after grinding out six months behind the plate? The isolated big hit, or crucial walk is as much as you should expect from a catcher, and Jorge has come through with plenty of those.

2007-09-19 10:38:09
7.   monkeypants

ALDS: 1 game, OPS .333
ALCS: 5 games, OPS .845
WS: 3 games, OPS 1.200+

Otherwsise, he seems to have alternated excellent series with pretty stinky ones. But what about recent post seasons where the team has only lasted one series:

ALDS: 4 games, OPS 1.400

ALDS: 5 games, OPS 1.000+

2007-09-19 10:40:08
8.   monkeypants
6 Good points. I wonder, now that the playoffs are three rounds, how many players have been dominant for the whole playoffs in a given year (that is, three series, with the team going to the WS)?
2007-09-19 10:41:30
9.   Alex Belth
Marcus, my gut feeling is that it is too soon for Bernie to come back and do something like that. But count on him being involved in Stadium-closing, New-Stadium-Opening events.

Tribe just took a 3-2 lead. Go Tribe!

2007-09-19 10:48:56
10.   Sliced Bread
Funny, I didn't hear Sherman's radio debut, but caught him last night doing the MY 9 Postgame (or whatever it's called), and thought he'd make a decent broadcaster.

His write up on the experience is interesting. Sounds like he got some solid advice, and was treated very well by Sterling and Kay. Good stuff.

By the way, did you catch Suzyn gushing about Mussina's performance last night, you'd think he was mowing down the '27 Yanks, not the dearly departed '07 O's.

2007-09-19 10:54:39
11.   Sliced Bread
5 Would Bernie do the Jimi Hendrix treatment of the Star Spangled Banner?

They'd love that up in the Lowe's Play-by-Play booth (or whatever it's called)

Are you experienced, Suzyn?
Have you ever been experienced, John?

2007-09-19 10:57:02
12.   rbj
Re: the 100 hated list, why no Brian Bosworth -- overhyped player who also made terrible movies.

Torre should start resting one player per game. Maybe start with Jorge today. Rest A-Rod on the road.

2007-09-19 10:59:14
13.   Bama Yankee
5 Looks like Stevie Ray Vaughan did it back in 1985 at the Astrodome:
2007-09-19 11:07:49
14.   RichB
3 Yeah, they're nip and tuck right now. But, Jeter is 33 this year and after Pete's 33rd year, he rattled off 5 years where he averaged 207 hits each year. Then his decline phase started, but it will be very difficult for Jeter to duplicate that. I think he could do it, but he'd have to stay very, very, very consistent until he's 38. And then he'll have to continue playing decent ball until he's 45. That's tough to do.

Still, I think anyone that writes him off is crazy.

2007-09-19 11:08:46
15.   Mattpat11
Tigers are losing 4-2 in the seventh.
2007-09-19 11:19:31
16.   Mattpat11
Unfortunately, Joe Borowski lurks.
2007-09-19 11:26:52
17.   3rd gen yankee fan
5 Wow, sounds cool to me!
2007-09-19 11:28:50
18.   Mattpat11
1st and 2nd one out for Mags. Still 4-2
2007-09-19 11:32:11
19.   Mattpat11
Mags Ks
2007-09-19 11:37:40
20.   Mattpat11
Tiggers load bases, but Thames flies out.
2007-09-19 11:38:08
21.   Marcus
13 Wow, look at all the photographers swarming Stevie! They forgot they are supposed to be standing towards the flag. That's great!

9 I think I agree with you Alex. After reading that article you linked to, it sounds like Bernie is still hoping to come back next year, and this would be the closest thing to a farewell tour that Bernie has had, so he probably wouldn't like the symbolism.

I just think it would be an amazing idea. The crowd would go nuts!

2007-09-19 11:46:10
22.   Mattpat11
Borowski in
2007-09-19 11:49:36
23.   Shaun P
22 And one out, with the bottom of the lineup coming up.
2007-09-19 11:51:24
24.   Mattpat11
two outs
2007-09-19 11:51:31
25.   Shaun P
I love Santana, but Sabathia has got to win the Cy Young, doesn't he?

2 outs!

2007-09-19 11:54:05
26.   Mattpat11
Tigers lose.
2007-09-19 11:54:05
27.   Shaun P
Game over, Tigers lose.
2007-09-19 11:54:20
28.   Shaun P
Game over, Tigers lose.
2007-09-19 11:55:04
29.   Yankee Fan In Boston
25 cc would have my vote. not that my vote has ever accomplished much.
2007-09-19 11:56:11
30.   Mattpat11
Magic number is six.
2007-09-19 12:09:44
31.   Bama Yankee
12 Remember Bosworth getting run over by Bo Jackson on MNF? That was a classic (it is at the 1:18 mark of this video):

Speaking of Bo, I found this video of what has to be one of the best runs in football history:

2007-09-19 12:15:58
32.   Chyll Will
11 (from last night) "Suzyn: 'We will all learn together about Rocky Cherry...'"

Your guess is as good as mine >;)

I was thinking the same thing re: Bernie's Hendrix moment, but I'd love it forever if he could do that opening night 2009.

2007-09-19 12:17:45
33.   Sliced Bread
re: resting Posada.

He should play tonight, as it's unofficially a playoff tune-up for Pettitte, and a sweep wouldn't hurt going into the off-day tomorrow.

I'd start him again on Friday night for the Wang tune-up, rest him for the Saturday day game (Kennedy), play him Sunday (Clemens), rest him again Monday (Hughes.) Since it is highly unlikely that Joe will start one of the kids over Mussina, Posada should sit out/or DH the Hughes/Kennedy games.

2007-09-19 12:26:32
34.   Start Spreading the News
really good article on pitch selection:
2007-09-19 12:35:32
35.   Mattpat11
33 At the same time, Jose Molina isn't Wil Nieves. I don't think starting him would be a disaster tonight, especially against Baltimore.
2007-09-19 12:53:29
36.   rbj
Line up via Peter, and it's Damon getting the day off:
Cabrera CF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
Rodriguez 3B
Posada C
Matsui LF
Cano 2B
Duncan DH
Mientkiewicz 1B
Pettitte LHP (13-8, 3.89)
2007-09-19 12:56:10
37.   Mattpat11
Cabrera CF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
Rodriguez 3B
Posada C
Matsui LF
Cano 2B
Duncan DH
Mientkiewicz 1B
Pettitte LHP (13-8, 3.89)

Via pete Abraham

2007-09-19 13:00:11
38.   Sliced Bread
Joe ridin'the Dougie D Train as far as it will take him.

Yay! It's a Joba Day!

2007-09-19 13:05:53
39.   Mike T
Don't know if this has been posted on here or not, but here ya go:

2007-09-19 13:06:39
40.   standuptriple
5 They get the remaining members of The Grateful Dead to play every couple years before a Giants game in SF. I always think it's pretty cool.
2007-09-19 13:12:14
41.   Sliced Bread
Love this comment from LoHud

Becca--27 in 07! Nothing beats Optimism!
September 19th, 2007 at 4:01 pm

I know there are those who disagree, but I would LOVE to see:

Yankees defeat Angels in three, ALDS
Yankees defeat BoSox in less-than-seven, ALCS
Yankees defeat Arizona in four or five, World Series.

That's revenge for 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005 all wrapped up into one. (Vengance for 2006? Tigers blowing their lead is pretty fine by me!)

Who would disagree with that, Becca?

2007-09-19 13:13:42
42.   Vandelay Industries
37 I know I may get jumped all over for this, but isn't winning the division pretty darn important? I read that Joe Torre has said that he will rest guys once the WC is locked up. This lineup certainly looks like that is the plan going forward. It is not that I don't want to see Duncan play. It isn't that I don't want to see the kids play. It isn't that I don't want a rested roster going into the post-season. It is simply that winning the division is job one, then the ALDS, then the ALCS, and then the WS. I also agree with many here that making the playoffs as the WC may be good for the Yankees. However I still think winning the division, especially considering how this season unfolded, is very very important.
2007-09-19 13:17:53
43.   Sliced Bread
42 I think tonight's lineup (Shelley!) has more to do with the lefty pitching matchup.

Now's not only a good time to rest the starters, but also to get the reserves sharpened up.

Plus, I think taking the division has more to do with the Sox losing (which Yanks can't control) than Yanks winning. And even with a few starters on the bench, there should be enough talent on the field to beat the O's, Jays, and Rays.

2007-09-19 13:29:04
44.   Vandelay Industries
43 When I saw her walking down the street, I thought she was Shelley, Shelley.
Now that we're together I'm absolutely sure that she's Shelley, Shelley.
Move into my mom's house with me, Shelley Shelley.
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of
Shelley Shelley!
2007-09-19 13:36:27
45.   weeping for brunnhilde
Jorgie hit the homerun off of Zito in the Derek flip game for the only run of the ballgame and he tied the score by dunking a ball into center off Pedro.

That's enough for me.

2007-09-19 13:37:28
46.   weeping for brunnhilde
6 He also hit the dinger!
2007-09-19 13:45:56
47.   Yankee Fan In Boston
44 i just watched that one yesterday. awesome.

46 and caught jeter's flip.

2007-09-19 14:14:19
48.   Chyll Will
47 and flipped the script.
2007-09-19 14:20:57
49.   Orly Yarly NoWai
42 Meh. I'd love to see it happen, but I'd rather be prepared for the playoffs against the Indians than draggin' ass for the Angels.
2007-09-19 14:26:22
50.   yankz
Anyone else find the notion that "Hey, home field advantage didn't do squat for these three teams, so it must be overrated!" a little ridiculous? How can you look at the Yanks' home/road records this year and NOT think it would be an advantage? Not saying that they should play for it, but there's no way it would hurt. It's not like there's some road team advantage.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-09-19 14:35:21
51.   monkeypants
50 Home field may not hurt, but that does not imply that it is much of an advantage. Persumably one of the reason teams play better during a homestand is because they do not have to travel between series--but the uneven burden of travel is pretty much eliminated during the post season.

Historically, baseball teams tend to have less of a home field advantage statistically (that is, the difference between home and road winning percentages league wide) than one finds in other sports.

2007-09-19 14:46:49
52.   yankz
51 Agreed, but some people make it sound like there's NO affect whatsoever. Just because a bunch of road teams have won in the past does not mean that the Yankees would be better off playing on the road. Who in their right minds would want to travel to Anaheim?!
2007-09-19 14:56:07
53.   Bama Yankee
51 Plus, the road team usually takes the mindset: "All we gotta do is win one of those first two games and then we have home field advantage". Whereas the home team is under pressure "not to lose" one of those first two and thus lose home field. At least it seems that way for us during the ALDS. I think we have only won those first two home games a couple of times during the last ten years (against Texas in 98 & 99).
2007-09-19 14:58:15
54.   weeping for brunnhilde
0 What a poignant story about Bernie.

I'm almost in tears.

Dear Bernie.

2007-09-19 15:02:48
55.   standuptriple
51 I just hate the Yanks going from coast to coast. NY-CLE, in whatever situation, is much better on the older players.
2007-09-19 15:13:51
56.   Vandelay Industries
53 Agreed. Hey, all the way to 16 after beating Arkansas? You guys have to be loving the incompetence of AP voters right about now.
2007-09-19 15:29:28
57.   yankz
New thread

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