Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Bobby also has to mark his calendar on April 30. That's when Oklahoma City University will honor him with the Abe Lemons/Paul Hansen Award for Sports Excellence at their annual Sports Spectacular dinner and auction. The award is given to those who have helped sports grow in the state of Oklahoma.
"It will take a couple of weeks," a calm Abreu said with ear buds in yesterday morning in the Legends Field clubhouse. "I don't worry about (being ready for Opening Day). It was painful, but it will be better."
"You don't know it's going to get worse. Sometimes you feel something and it goes away, but not that one," Abreu said.
Abreu will be completely shutdown until there is marked improvement to the area. Joe Torre and Cashman reiterated their previous statements that Abreu's injury will not mean that Bernie Williams will be asked (begged) back.
Humberto Sanchez will be shutdown for 4 or 5 more days with a forearm strain and the Yankees are considering altering his delivery to alleviate future inflammation. (Update 2:05 pm - Peter Abrams of The Journal News is reporting that Sanchez is now likely to be shut down for the next 10 days).
Andy Pettitte will be playing golf with Roger Clemens today. There will probably be some conversation like this:
Andy: "Are you going with the 5-wood or a driver here?"
Roger: "If I had to decide today, I would have to say there's an 80% of me using the driver and a 20% of me using the 5-wood. Of course, I'm nowhere near making a decision."
At the point, hopefully Pettitte will hit Clemens over the head with his putter.
"This is the first time I could say, 'I am just going to pick up where I left off,' " said Pavano, who has had plenty of experience returning from injuries the past two seasons. "In the past it has just been positive words. I don't know how committed I was. This time I am definitely ready to go."
It was bad enough that Pavano wasn't fully committed to getting back on the mound, but how dumb is this guy for admitting it? For now, Pavano is still expected to make his start against the Phillies on Sunday.
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Igawa faced 6 hitters, allowing an infield single to Brett Gardner and retiring 4 via groundouts. 14 of his 19 pitches were thrown for strikes.
Former umpire Doug Harvey and long time player union head Marvin Miller received the most votes for the non-player portion of the ballot, but still fell considerably short of election. The Veterans Committee has not elected anyone to the Hall since the voting changes were put in place in 2003.
Here is the complete vote tally:
Curt Flood (14, 17.1%), Al Oliver (14, 17.1%), Mickey Vernon (14, 17.1%), Minnie Minoso (12, 14.6%), Cecil Travis (12, 14.6%), Dick Allen (11, 13.4%), Marty Marion (11, 13.4%), Joe Gordon (10, 12.2%), Ken Boyer (9, 11%), Mickey Lolich (8, 9.8%), Wes Ferrell (7, 8.5%), Sparky Lyle (6, 7.3%), Carl Mays (6, 7.3%), Thurman Munson (6, 7.3%), Rocky Colavito (5, 6.1%) and Bobby Bonds (1, 1.2%)
Whitey Herzog (29, 35.8%), Bill White (24, 29.6%), Bowie Kuhn (14, 17.3%), August Busch Jr. (13, 16%), Billy Martin (12, 14.8%), Charley O. Finley (10, 12.3%), Gabe Paul (10, 12.3%), Paul Richards (10, 12.3%), Phil Wrigley (9, 11.1%) and Harry Dalton (8, 9.9%)
Monday, February 26, 2007
Johnny Damon wasn't specific about why he had to leave camp, but he assured everyone that all was good.
The tests on Carl Pavano's foot revealed a bone bruise. He is listed as day-to-day.
Happy 74th to Johnny Blanchard!
Johnny Damon was excused from weekend workouts due to a personal issue. Joe Torre did not know the specifics, but it was originally thought Damon would be out for an extended period of time. He's now expected to return today.
Pavano isn't the only one with some spring training aches and pains. Brian Bruney has been sidelined by back spasms in his rib cage area and Humberto Sanchez has been slowed by tightness in his right forearm. Sanchez has been on the DL 8 times in his young career and had his season ended early last August with elbow problems. Bruney is expected to be shutdown for 4-5 days, while Sanchez is going for a precautionary MRI.
Spring Training Rule #1
All Rookies must walk 2 paces behind the Captain
Friday, February 23, 2007
Starter - Jorge Posada; Posada starts his 13th season in pinstripes. He's averaged 135 appearances behind home plate the last 7 seasons. Jorgie turned 35 last August, but he has not experienced the offensive drop off (.277-23-94 in '06) that most catchers do at his age. He will become a free agent after this season and the Yankees have no immediate replacement for the long term.
Bench - Wil Nieves and Todd Pratt are the only 2 candidates with a shot at the job (veterans Raul Chavez and Ben Davis are both in camp, but are coming off injuries and are not being considered by Joe Torre). The 29-year old Nieves is a solid defensive catcher who has appeared in just 37 games over parts of 3 big league seasons. He's hit just .159 (13-82) over that time.
Pratt, who recently turned 40, has played 14 seasons, all of them in the National League. He's solid defensively, has an adequate bat, and has post-season experience (including facing the Yankees in the 2000 subway series).
Nieves is out of minor league options, but the feeling here is that Torre will go with the major league experienced Pratt.
1st Base - Doug Mientkiewicz was brought in this off-season for his defensive presence (ball-hawking ability?) and to be the left-hitting side of a platoon at first. Andy Phillips and Josh Phelps have both excelled at the minor league level, but neither has had the same success at the plate in the majors. The advantage here has to go to Phillips who proved himself to be a very good defensive 1st baseman last season. Phelps has only worn a 1st base glove in 31 big league games, spending the majority of his time at DH. Of course, Joe Torre could decide that neither is worth a roster spot, and could instead use Miguel Cairo as a backup 1st baseman. This would allow Torre to carry an extra outfielder or utility infielder.
2nd Base - Robinson Cano; The Cano Kid is coming off a fabulous sophomore season. Despite missing a month of the last season with a badly injured hamstring, Cano finished 3rd in the AL with a .342 average. He added 15 home runs and 78 RBI and he only turned 24 this past October. More importantly, his fielding percentage (.984) hopped up 10 points from the previous season.
Shortstop - Derek Jeter; El Capitan is coming of a season in which he had the 2nd highest average (.343) and RBI totals (97) of his career, and nabbed a career-best 34 steals. He was screwed out of the MVP award (like hell he wasn't!) in a season in which he won his 3rd Gold Glove, eclipsed 2,000 career hits, and hit .500 in the playoffs. From the "time flies" department - Jeter is in the 7th year of the 10 year deal he signed in 2001.
3rd Base - Alex Rodriguez; All eyes and ears will be on A-Rod again - and as usual it will mostly be for the wrong reason. It's hard to tell if he can do any right according to some Yankees fans who get carried away. There's no question he has been a playoff flop the last 2 seasons. He hasn't been alone in that respect, but that's gone largely unnoticed. He could go out and hit .330-50-140 during the regular season, but it will all be for naught if he doesn't succeed (and/or the team doesn't succeed) in the playoffs. As we all know by now, Yankees success is measured by World Series rings.
Utility - Miguel Cairo had a significant offensive drop off from his previous stint in pinstripes, but he still provided solid defense in backing up all four infield spots. The only way he'll get significant playing time is with an injury to a starter or if Torre decides to use him as the right-handed side of the platoon at 1st.
Designated Hitter - Jason Giambi has this one all to himself. He may take a seat against some lefties or when Matsui, Posada, etc., need a breather, but he'll get the bulk of the time here. The Yankees hope he can compile the numbers he did last season albeit with more consistency.
Left Field - Hideki Matsui; After not missing a game in his first 3 seasons in pinstripes, Hideki played just 51 regular season games in '06 after busting his wrist trying to catch a sinking shot off the bat of the Dead Sox's Mark Loretta. Two good things came out of that: Melky Cabrera got the chance to prove himself and, more importantly, Joe Torre no longer had to worry about Matsui's consecutive games playing streak. Though the Japanese media will still be all over him, Torre can now sit Matsui down for a game here and there to rest him or to get Melky some playing time. Hideki has topped the 100 RBI mark in each of his 3 full seasons and he should attain that figure again this year. His home run totals (16-31-23 in '03-'05') will hopefully be in the 30-35 range again.
Center Field - Johnny Damon; The Head Idiot in Boston made a smooth transition to Yankees pinstripes last season. He was one of the most consistent players all season and sacrificed his body (nagging shoulder and foot injuries) numerous times defensively. Damon hit a career-high 24 home runs and had his highest steal total in 3 years. It would not be surprising to see Damon swipe 35-40 bases this season, health permitting. Damon has also quickly stepped forward as a team spokesman.
Right Field - Bobby Abreu never liked being the big man on campus in Philly, so he didn't mind coming to a team where he was just one of the guys. Though he will probably be in the clean up spot, Abreu won't have the same spotlight he had with the Phillies. Expectations were sky-high for Abreu after slugging 18 HR and 53 RBI by the '05 All-Star break, and he then went on to win the Home Run Derby during the festivities. But he slumped miserably afterwards, beginning his path out of town.
Abreu hit a torrid .330 after coming over from the Phils at the trade deadline (seriously, how did the Devil Rays deal this guy for Kevin Stocker???) and he provided better defense than Gary Sheffield had lately. There are balls that fall in that it appears Abreu should get to, but he does a decent job of tracking the ball and he has a strong arm.
4th Outfielder - Melky Cabrera was rushed to the majors in 2005 as the Yankees looked for a solution to their center field woes. He was nowhere near ready and one had to wonder if he would ever wear the major league uni again (it also made those of us who had predicted great things for him look bad). With another year under his belt, Melky blossomed last season. In addition to displaying dazzling defensive skills (see below), Melky showed great patience at the plate, fitting right in with the Yankees' approach to being patient. In addition to his 56 walks, Melky struck out just 59 times and swiped 12 bases. All that and he's still only 22.
Mariano Rivera - The pen starts and finishes with their future Hall Of Fame closer. Mo is a quiet guy, but he made plenty of noise already this spring when he said he wouldn't be averse to playing elsewhere after this season if the Yankees don't - (I hate doing this) - "show him the money". Every Yankees fan knows the team should do just that, but for now we'll take a healthy Mo. Joe Torre has already said Mo will strictly be a 1-inning pitcher during the regular season so he can try to avoid the shoulder strain that occurred last season.
Kyle Farnsworth - 99 mph fastball, 99 year old back. Farnsworth showed last year that the torque it took to unleash his heater caused his back to stiffen up the next day. With Rivera on a 1 inning limit, one has to wonder how many nights both of them will not be available.
Scott Proctor - It's a wonder this spring that Proctor didn't report to camp with his right arm hanging down by his foot. Proctor was overused by Torre to the tune of 102.3 innings over 83 games. He'll be heavily counted on again to fill the bridge to Mariano.
Mike Myers - It would surprise me greatly if Myers is still on the roster at year end. The lefty specialist was brought in primarily to face David Ortiz (2-9, 3-run HR, 1 BB), which he did with decent results. However, Myers pitched just 30 2-3 innings in 62 appearances. While the Yankees will have 12 pitchers to start the season, the roster would have much more versatility by carrying 11. A versatile lefty, such as teammate Ron Villone, would be a greater addition to the squad.
Ron Villone - It first appeared that Villone would not be back this season. The Yankees front office wouldn't budge off of their offer of 1 year, while Villone was hoping to land a 2 year deal somewhere. After turning down the Yankees offer of arbitration, Villone came up empty and settled for a minor league deal and an invite to camp. Villone was another victim of the Torre overuse disease. After being the forgotten man in the pen to start the season, it seemed like he was throwing every day during the summer. The result was a decline in production in the stretch run.
Luis Vizcaino - The hard-throwing veteran was acquired in the Randy Johnson deal and will be counted on to take some of the pressure off of Scott Proctor. There's a possibility he could be moved if the Yankees decide they would rather have both Brian Bruney and Chris Britton in the pen.
Brian Bruney and Chris Britton are likely battling for the final spot in the pen unless Torre decides to go with just one lefthander. While both look like they could be defensive linemen in the NFL, they both throw very hard and Bruney did an excellent job after being cast adrift by the Dbacks last season (I know it's not just me who wishes the Dbacks fail in every aspect after the 2001 WS). Britton, acquired for Jaret Wright, could be the sleeper in all of this. The Orioles needed a starting pitcher, but may have made a mistake in giving up Britton. Britton's rookie season saw him limit batters to a .228 average, while compiling a 1.17 WHIP.
On the outside looking in: TJ Beam, Colter Bean, Darrel Rasner, and Jeffrey Karstens. The first two are not likely to make the bullpen to start the season and one of the latter two could make the rotation if Pavano is dealt or falters. For now, they should be pitching every 5th day at Columbus (though Rasner may end up in the pen, with Hughes and Sanchez on the squad).
Thursday, February 22, 2007
DJ passed away today, from an apparent heart attack, at age 52. He had been coaching in the league's developmental program. DJ won NBA titles with the both the Celtics (1984, 1986) and the Seattle Supersonics (1979, series MVP).
DJ played in 1,100 games over 14 seasons and was one of the top defensive guards in the game.
Rest in peace DJ.
Jason Giambi was among those participating after announcing that his surgically repaired wrist was tired, but fit.
Hughes received rave reviews from Giambi, catcher Todd Pratt, and coach Larry Bowa. The Yankees also got their first look at Ross Ohlendoff, who was acquired in the Unit deal.
Philip Hughes and Humberto Sanchez are two of the candidates for the rotation this year and beyond.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
The player's portion of this year's ballot includes long-time fan favorite Gil Hodges, non-steroid home run champion Roger Maris. The ballot also includes 15 "composite" candidates, comprised of owners, broadcasters, etc...One of the candidates getting a lot of push to be elected is former player's union head Marvin Miller. Miller is at the forefront of those who helped form today's free agency. Of course free agency may not have happened without the courage of Curt Flood to buck the system. Flood is also on the ballot.
A number of persons associated with the Yankees are also on the ballot. In addition to Torre and Maris, "The Captain", Thurman Munson, former player and manager Billy Martin, former broadcaster Bill White, and former team president Gabe Paul are all on the ballot.
Results of the balloting will be announced on February 27.
Billy Martin and Thurman Munson are among this year's Veterans Committee nominees
2007 Veterans Committee Nominees:
August Busch Jr.
"I'm not bringing up our relationship away from the field. I haven't brought up the Esquire magazine article since it came up. That's something I haven't talked about. I haven't brought it up."
"All right today you say you hate me and tomorrow I'll say I don't know what you're talking about"
"Has our relationship changed? I've had a lot of relationships change over the years. But what we do away from the field, how much time we spend together really makes no difference when we're playing."
Jeter went on to say that their relationship off the field doesn't matter, and that things are solid on the field.
"Alex never sensed a lack of support from me," Jeter said. "That's something we talked about. Just because you guys don't know about it doesn't mean we haven't spoken. Alex does not sense a lack of support. We talked about that from day 1."
Jeter also downplayed the significance of A-Rod's talk with the media yesterday,
"You have to ask him. I didn't bring it up. You have to ask him if it's a good idea to get it out of the way. To me it was never an issue I felt we needed to talk about."
Now if only the media would let go of this soap opera - because frankly it really doesn't matter.
No Bern Baby Bernie
As expected, Bernie Williams was a no-show in camp yesterday, the required date for position players.
Jason Giambi reported to camp and said he was fine with the Yankees' plan to make him the full-time DH. "It's more important for me to win and be in a World Series," Giambi said. "Whatever the team needs, that's what's going to be best."
Giambi also delivered the early quote of the year when asked about the odds on Roger Clemens returning to the Yankees. "Andy (Pettitte)'s your guy. They share the same lung."
Monday, February 19, 2007
Andy Phillips. Phillips isn't too concerned though. His wife has recently undergone chemotherapy for a rare cancer caused by a molar pregnancy. It has certainly kept things in perspective for him.
"I've learned a lot in the last year with the kind of stuff I had to deal with my wife," Phillips said. "Things kind of shake out the way they're going to shake out. That's what you've got to hang onto and trust."
The current plan is for Phillips to battle Josh Phelps for the right-handed side of a platoon with Doug Mientkiewicz. That could all change if Bernie Williams was to make the team. In all likelihood it would mean no platoon and the Yankees would carry 5 outfielders.
"I'm looking forward to trying to win a job, no matter what," Phillips said. "That's no different this year than in the past.
"I'm trying not to think about situations and circumstances, because if you do that, more obstacles get in your way", Phillips added. "You just try to go out and play, and hope your performance dictates what happens."Since he arrived in 2004, Alex Rodriguez has constantly fielded questions about his relationship with Derek Jeter. That status quo has always been a variation on everything is good between us. A-Rod has finally come clean, admitting that the once strong relationship has cooled off quite a bit.
"People start assuming that things are a lot worse than what they are, which they're not. But they're obviously not as great as they used to be. We were like blood brothers," Rodriguez said Monday. "You don't have to go to dinner with a guy four, five times a week to do what you're doing. It's actually much better than all you guys expect, but I just want to let the truth be known."
Things noticeably changed after A-Rod's 2001 Esquire interview when he downplayed Jeter's importance to the Yankee's championship run.
"We were best of friends about 10, 13, 14, years ago, and we still get along well. We have a good working relationship. I cheer very hard for him. He cheers hard for me. And most importantly, we're both trying to win a world championship," Rodriguez said.
In not so many words, A-Rod feels that he and Jeter have simply grown apart. He maybe wishes he and the media could do the same.
"Let's make a contract: You don't ask me about Derek anymore, and I promise I'll stop lying to all you guys," A-Rod told reporters.
"Doug Mientkiewicz autographs a ball...or is he keeping it?"
Saturday, February 17, 2007
20% means there's a 100% chance we will continue to have to listen to Clemens's speculation about his retirement.
SHUT UP YOU SELF-IMPORTANT JACK ASS.
One of the topics that has been at the forefront of Spring Training has been Mariano Rivera's future. When asked about it, Mussina said that while he realizes that the Yankees don't negotiate during the spring or the season (including his own contract status last year), exceptions can be made and one should definitely be made in the case of Mariano. Moose cannot see a future Yankees team without the future hall of fame closer.
Moose also was asked about Alex Rodriguez and didn't back down from the stance he made last season. Mussina knows that A-Rod is one of the greatest talents off all time, but he needs to stop worrying about every little aspect of the game at every single moment. Basically in not so many words, Moose said A-Rod had to stop being so anal.
Finally, Mussina discusses his own future. He's approaching 250 wins, a mark he will have achieved without ever winning 20 games in a season. No other pitcher has ever reached that total without accomplishing the season feat. And while 300 wins would be a great accomplishment, Moose said he would not just "hang around" to reach that total.
Friday, February 16, 2007
Former Yankee and current Giants pitching coach Dave Righetti has only just started to work with newcomer Barry Zito, but is already concerned. Zito changed his delivery during the off-season (was Rick Peterson in on this?). After adding 10 pounds of muscle to his legs and core, Zito has lengthened his delivery. Righetti feels the new style will wear him down quicker.
Dmitri Young was released by the Detroit Tigers during last season's stretch drive due to his antics on and off the field. The Washington Nationals have decided to give "The Meathook" a new life in DC by signing him to a minor league deal.
Jorge De Paula has moved on from the Yankees after failing to fully recover from Tommy John surgery over the last 2 seasons.
The only amusing part of this story is when 1050 ESPN radio reported this as a "distraction" to the Yankees spring training. About as distracting as George Constanza running around the outfield as "Bodysuit Man".
"My heart is only 38 years old," Frank Torre told the newspaper, laughing. "The problem is, my body's 75. I'll be the bionic man by the time they're done with me."
Doctors are hoping that one of Frank Torre's relatives are a match. There was speculation yesterday that his daughter Elizabeth may be a good candidate.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to Frank Torre and his family for a new kidney and a speedy recovery.
Pavano only matters worse yesterday when he stupidly blamed the media for blowing things out of proportion. The media is no doubt filled with idiots, but it is truly amazing how many athletes try to use them as an excuse for their moronic or questionable behavior.
More from Moose- "He is looking at it with his perspective and we are looking at it with ours," Mussina said. "He has to show us he wants to pitch. Maybe once the whole team gets here he will look at it differently but I don't know how he will be treated by everyone."
"6 letter for wuss.. P _ _ A _ O"
"I don't know how widespread it is but from another starting pitcher who hasn't been 100 percent all of the last two years, I know what it takes to pitch and I know when you can't go out and pitch," Mussina said. "Some times it is a fine line. After 15 years, I know where the line is."
Thursday, February 15, 2007
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
"The answer is..."
"What is the team A-Rod will play for after he opts out of his contract?"
Alex Trebek: "Correct"
Alex Rodriguez has spent the past three season in Yankees pinstripes. To categorize them as yo-yo like would be an understatement. There was the blown 3-0 lead to the Red Sox (which of course went well beyond his fault) in the 2004 ALCS. The 2005 MVP season was followed up by a disappearing act against the Angels in the divisional series. And last year was an out and out disaster. When a player hits .290-35-121, that's really saying something. Yes, the Yankees won the AL East, but they were blitzed in the division series by the Tigers. After going 2-15 the prior year, the best player in the game followed that up with a 1-14 performance. He was a psychological mess the entire year. There's no question in my mind that some Yankees fans will never given A-Rod the approval he seeks. Part of it, of course, is because of A-Rod's own actions and words. A perfect example would be when he told reporters last season that he was playing hurt, and then refused to specify what the injury was.
With Scott Boras as his agent, there's no question that A-Rod will do some serious soul searching and most likely will opt out of his contract. With the recent contracts given out to Alfonso Soriano, JD Drew, and others, Boras will definitely be pushing for it.
"I'll Take Unsolved Mysteries for $400 Alex"
"The answer is..."
"Who are candidates to replace Joe Torre?"
Alex Trebek: "Correct Again"
Who else could make George cry?!
There's always an outside chance Torre could stick around longer if he and King George decide it's not time. Obviously there is no managerial contract beyond the 2007 season at this point. I think Torre has done a tremendous job since he's been here, but I for one felt that maybe it was time for a change after the 2006 campaign. Joe has made some odd and poor decisions since the 2003 World Series when he let that idiot Jeff Weaver actually get on the mound. That being said, I did NOT want Lou Piniella coming back to the Bronx. No Bobby Valentine, no Larry Bowa, no Lee Mazzilli. So I'm glad Torre will get the chance to finish his contract. Beyond that, I can't honestly see Don Mattingly stepping in as manager in 2008. I love Donnie Baseball, but I don't know if he would be ready for a big step like that. I'd rather see Joe Girardi get the job.
"I'll Take Unsolved Mysteries for $600 Alex"
"The answer is..."
"What is the title of Bernie Williams' next album?"
Alex Trebek: "We'll accept that."
Heir to Mantle and Clapton?
Bernie Williams is da man. His number 51 will be retired; he'll have his day in front of the Stadium faithful. And as much as it pains me to say it, it's time to begin that retirement now. He had a good season in 2006. Not fantastic, not horrible, just good. He's clearly not the same hitter, especially from the left side, and he doesn't have the speed to roam centerfield any more. He doesn't have the arm of a corner outfielder. The bat is slower, the legs aren't as quick, the body aches - it happens to the best of them. The Yankees need to let a young guy like Melky Cabrera develop as a 4th outfielder, with an eye on possibly starting one day. Here's to all the success in the world for Bernie as the next great guitar God.
"I'll Take Unsolved Mysteries for $800 Alex"
"The answer is..."
"What is the minimum numbers of wins it'll take to win the AL East?"
Alex Trebek: "Yes! We would have also accepted, 'the minimum number of days Carl Pavano will be on the DL."
Pitching will be the key as usual to having another banner year
I'm figuring the Yankees will get 47 wins out of Chien-Ming Wang (17), Andy Pettitte (17), and Mike Mussina (13). That leaves another 48-51 wins to be picked up by the combination of Carl Pavano, Kei Igawa, whoever else steps in, and the bullpen. It's most likely the AL East runner-up misses out on the AL wildcard, so the Yankees are going to have to push to the finish. Boston will have rebounded and Toronto gained a lot of confidence last season.
"I'll Take Unsolved Mysteries for $1000 Alex"
"The answer is..."
"What is what Roger Clemens won't be wearing in the Hall of Fame if he plays for the Red Sox again"
Alex Trebek: "Great job, you ran the category!"
Hmmm, should I stay or should I go now...
Roger Clemens has already started his "I don't know what I'm doing this year" game. What is clear is that the Yankees, Red Sox, and Astros are the only 3 teams that Clemens would consider pitching for. And one thing is even clearer than that. If Clemens returns to Boston he can forget EVER wearing a Yankees cap in the Hall of Fame. As it is he should be wearing a Red Sox hat since that is where he made his career.
And give the Hummer back too!
"If they want to talk, we're willing to listen," Rivera said Monday following a pre-spring training workout. "But I'm going to bring nothing to the table. I'm just going to focus on what I have to do and see what happens. I have a contract for this year. That's what matters. All I have to do is focus on this season. I just have to worry about being able to help the team as much as I can."
A healthy and "ready to go" Mariano Rivera works out in Tampa
"I know that I have one more year, that is this year," Rivera said. "After that year, I don't know what's going to happen. Definitely I want to finish my career here, but if they don't give the respect that I deserve, I have to move on.
Gotta go to Mo!
"The Yankees always give me the respect," Rivera added. "When the time comes, if they want me back, they want me back. Otherwise, I'm not going to sit in my house crying. I have to move on."
Here's to hoping the Yankees do the right thing before this season is over.
Friday, February 9, 2007
But Bauer will best be remembered as the hard-nosed outfielder for the Yankees. He was a member of 9 World Series teams, winning 7 championship rings in the process. He had a lifetime
.277 average over 14 years in the big leagues and was always a crowd favorite at Old-Timer's day. He was also one of the Yankees involved in the famous Copacabana incident that helped lead to the trade of Billy Martin.
Bauer had cartilage removed from throat in 1993 after first being diagnosed with cancer. His voice was raspy, but he was still the fun loving Hank Bauer. He will certainly be sorely missed.
Tuesday, February 6, 2007
Good luck to a guy who was one of the few bright spots during the declinasty days of the late '60s/early 70's, and an integral part of the Yankees 4 World Series wins during the '96-'00 stretch.
These two made Manny and Big Papi look like little leaguers
Gehrig drove in 175 runs, which amazingly would only be the 2nd highest total of his career. He and Ruth provided an unparalleled 1-2 punch. The Iron Horse's 47 home runs were more than 4 other teams and he and Ruth combined for 339 RBI. They didn't do too poorly hitting for average either as Gehrig hit a torrid .373 and Ruth a not-too-shabby, .356 (Harry Heilmann lead the lead at .398). They both walked over 100 times as well. They weren't alone though. The lineup also included fellow Hall of Famers Tony Lazzeri (.383-18-102) and Earl Combs (.356).
The team's hitters have always been talked about, but not much attention has been paid to the teams pitchers. The Yankees had a league best 3.20 ERA. There was no Cy Young award in those days, but future Hall of Famer Waite Hoyt certainly could have won it. Hoyt completed 23 of his 32 starts in compiling a 22-7 record with a 2.63 ERA. Urban Shocker (18 and what a great name), Hall of Famer Herb Pennock (19) and Wilcy Moore (19) nearly joined him. Saves were not a category back then, but baseball historians have mined through the stats and determined that Moore had 13 of them in addition to his very good win total and a league best 2.28 ERA.
Mention of course has to be made of the manager as well. Miller Huggins, who was inducted in 1964, took the Yankees to their first 6 World Series. If today's media existed back then, he probably would have fallen into the same trap as Joe Torre. "All he has to do is fill out the lineup card". If only it were that simple. Huggins' died less than a month after the conclusion of the 1929 season. He was just 51.
Needless to say the World Series was no contest. The Yankees swept a Pittsburgh Pirates team that was lead by the Lloyd Waner, Paul Waner and Pie Traynor. Ruth slugged the series only 2 home runs and drove in a team high 7 runs. Shortstop Mark Koenig hit .500 (9-18). Moore saved Game 1 and pitched a complete game in the series final game.
Murderer's Row indeed...this team could scare the hell out of anyone.
Monday, February 5, 2007
Before getting down to Yankees business, a quick congratulations to Tony Dungy, Peyton Manning, and the Indy Colts. It was an entertaining, sloppy game at times, and a close one. Good commercials too. Oh, and I did predict 26-17, not bad. I now have bragging rights with myself.
Pavano says he's ready to go
Should we get a marching band? Hire a skywriter? Carl, or Carlotta as we prefer to refer to you as, excuse us for not doing cartwheels. If you haven't heard what is causing my ire, Carl Pavano announced to the media last week that he felt physically strong and ready to go after changing his physical workouts. Notice there was no mention of his mental readiness.
I wonder if you can sprain your eyelash?
Reports are that Bernie Williams is leaning towards accepting the Yankee's spring training invite. Matt DeSalvo, who had been dropped from the 40 man roster last week, was signed to a minor league deal and given an invite to spring training.
Friday, February 2, 2007
Also here's to hoping no one sounds as corny as when Paul McCartney yelled out, "How ya doing Super Bowl?"
Prediction - Colts 26 Bears 17
Thursday, February 1, 2007
Should I have the chicken or fish?
Damn, I hate decisions!
As he has before, Clemens reiterated how hard it is to make the commitment and to get into playing shape. He said the chance for another World Series ring in October could be a motivating factor.
Philip Hughes (only one 'l' - I remembered!) has already had his 2007 season limited by the Yankees. Hughes, who has already drawn comparison to Clemens by Jorge Posada, is to be kept under 180 innings pitched.