I’ve made no secret about how much I appreciate Jason Giambi’s game. But in the wake of the World Serious loss to Florida, the big lug continues to have his character besmirched by the local press. Yesterday, John Heyman blasted Giambi in Newsday. According to Heyman, the Yankees need to:
Finally pry Jason Giambi’s “personal trainer,” Bob Alejo, and Giambi’s father, John, out of the clubhouse.
“They just legitimize his failures,” a Yankees official said of the soft Giambi.
… “The guys who struggled in the postseason were the selfish guys, plus Aaron Boone, who just panicked,” another club official said.
… When the heat is on, Giambi melts. This October, he rarely hit when it mattered, and never with anyone on base. Also problematic, he’s like a single entity in the clubhouse, he and his enablers. “He’ll strike out, then go back into the clubhouse and look at smut magazines,” one club official complained about an in-game passion Giambi copped to earlier.
I have no way of knowing whether or not any of this is true or not. I wouldn’t be especially shocked if it were true either. But the little kid in me is sticking by my boy. I know the alarmists–or realists—have a point: Giambi is now a gimpy DH with many years remaining on a bloated contract. His decline could start sharply. He will most likely not return to the form he displayed in Oakland. But I will have faith until further notice, and I’m expecting Giambi to be a great hitter again next season.