"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Now There’s Something You Don’t See Every Day

Emily and I caught a good portion of the Yankees exhibition game against the Tribe last night. In his third at bat, Jason Giambi laced a long fly ball to deep left field. It sliced behind the left fielder and bounced on the warning track. Meanwhile, Giambi who was running hard out of the box, was storming around second, headed for third…I started yelling as he beat the throw for a triple. I turned to Em and said, “You’d better store that in your memory bank, cause we are not likely to see that again this year…or maybe ever.” Giambi scored on Ruben Sierra’s single through the left side, and was greeted by smiles all around from the Yankee bench. Rich Lederer–who wrote a fine piece on the late Dick “Monster” Radatz this past weekend–was watching too, 3,000 miles away from the Bronx, in Long Beach, California. He thinks the Giambi’s feat was significant for a couple of reasons, belly laughs aside:

1. Giambi has only had eight three baggers in his entire career and not a one since 2002.

2. Jason actually ran hard and with enthusiasm, and he ran better than I can recall since joining the Yankees. His knees don’t appear to be bothering him like they have in the past.

Giambi’s hair is also longer than I can remember it being since he joined the team. I know it won’t ever get as long as it was in Oakland, but as far as I’m concerned, the longer the better.

While Yankee vets, Rivera, Jeter and Williams are still layed up with injuries (Rivera is due to throw tonight, along with Paul Quantrill; Jeter should play tomorrow, while Bernie’s status is currently up in the air), Kevin Brown pitched well last night. According to Kevin Kernan in the Post:

Kevin Brown is not the talkative sort, but he remembers the pain. When I asked the right- hander last night to compare how his back feels now as to how it felt during his Game 7 collapse in last year’s ALCS, Brown took a long time to answer. He let out a tiny laugh and said, “Probably not having a car battery hooked up to my back and hip and not having a steel rod driven through the left side. I mean other than that, not much different at all.”

Imagine what kind of laughs could be had at dinner with Johnson, Brown and Mussina?

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1 Dan M   ~  Mar 22, 2005 6:12 am

1.  To heck with my suggestion that Giambi bat second - bat that speedster/OBP-machine first! ;)

2 David   ~  Mar 22, 2005 1:36 pm

2.  Dan M, that's cute, but I wonder whether Giambi really should considered for leadoff (assuming he returns to his former skills.) He'd take a lot of pitches. He'd make the starting pitcher work hard. He'd get on base a lot. His lack of steals would be offset by his many doubles. The biggest cost is that he wouldn't be available to drive in so many runs, but the Yankees have a bunch of other guys who can do that.

3 Dan M   ~  Mar 22, 2005 4:22 pm

3.  Actually, I think that the fact that he takes a lot of pitches makes him a decent #2 hitter, as it would would give Jeter the chance to steal more.

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
--Earl Weaver