"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice


When a Yankee player crosses home plate after hitting a home run it has become customary for his teammate to raise a finger to his lips in the universal expression of “shhh.” That is very much how I feel this morning after the Yankees edged in front of the Red Sox into first place. According to The New York Times:

“I don’t think it really means anything,” shortstop Derek Jeter said. “We still have to play well. There’s no time to congratulate anyone or walk around and be happy, because we haven’t won anything. If we play well and win our games, everything will be fine.”

Behind a vintage performance by Randy Johnson the Bombers beat the Orioles 2-1 last night in the Bronx–their fifth one-run contest in their last six games–while the Devil Rays came-from-behind to topple the Sox, 7-4 in Tampa. The Bombers are a half-a-game up on the Sox, who have the day off, and remain a half-a-game behind the Indians for the wildcard. Mike Mussina will take the mound for New York tonight (with Senator Al Leiter waiting in the wings should Mussina falter in his return); the Yanks have eleven games left, while the Sox have ten.

Johnson was simply overpowering. He didn’t allow a hit until the fifth inning. In the sixth, the fleet Bernie Castro reached first on an infield single. He slapped a shot down the third base line, a sure double, but it was stabbed by Alex Rodriguez, but there was no way to nab Castro. Melvin Mora then pounced on one of the only mistakes of the night for Johnson–a belt-high fastball–driving it into left center field for a double. After Miguel Tejada flew out to center, Javey Lopez hit another smash to third. This time it was to Rodriguez’s left. The Yankee third baseman slickly picked the ball and threw on to first to end the inning, saving a run in the process.

Rodrigo Lopez meanwhile was almost equally as effective if not as imposing. Changing speeds expertly, he stymied the Yankee offense throughout the evening (they were 0-8 with runners in scoring position). His biggest error–a flat change up to Matt Lawton in the second inning–was lofted over the right field fence for a two-run dinger that would be the difference in the game.

Johnson was replaced by Mariano Rivera in the ninth, a move that I was dubious about at the time. I just have a feeling that with all the work he’s seen of late Rivera has got to give sooner or later. The first pitch he threw pelted Melvin Mora in the arm. Tejada followed and bounced a high grounder to Rodriguez–too slow to be a double play–and Mora was forced at second. Lopez was next and roped a clean single through the left side. It looked as if could go all the way to the wall, but Hideki Matsui raced over, cut the ball off and returned it to the infield quickly. It was the kind of play that goes unnoticed in the box score, but I’m sure everyone in the Yankee dugout was appreciative of its significance. Rivera rebounded and struck out pinch-hitter Jay Gibbons, then got B.J. Surhoff to line out to first, the finishing touch on his 41st save and yet another incredibly tense game for the Yanks.

Still breathing?

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1 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:06 am

1.  Oh, I neglected to mention Jason Giambi coming out of the game with his gimpy back. Here's a piece on it: http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/story/348751p-297556c.html

Lots of nicks and bruises now. Jeter's thumb, Sheff's thigh, Giambi's back, Mussina's arm. But it comes with the territory at this time of year. Just hope they can hold together enough to get into the playoffs...

2 Dan M   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:34 am

2.  Giambi must be ready to kill Jeter right now, with all of his recent bad throws. Didn't he also leave a game in Toronto because he stretched awkwardly to catch one of his throws? Or am I imagining that.

3 mikeplugh   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:41 am

3.  Nice piece Alex.

I'd like to chime in on a piece written by Mike Lupica in today's NY Daily News.

Lupica is a regular crank when it comes to anything Yankees. He always likes to give backhanded compliments, and then relishes the opportunity to show why the Yankees 200 million dollar payroll club is underachieving, etc.....He loves it.

This time he picks the Ortiz in MVP angle. He compliments A-Rod for having a fine season, and announces that anyone who thinks he deserves the award on the basis of playing 3B is lying to themselves. He says that Ortiz is flat out the Most Valuable Player in the AL, and that you'd have to be a self-deluding moron to vote otherwise.

I still read Lupica whenever he writes. I think he's a good writer. Part of me needs to find the villain to hate. I loved watching him on the Sports Reporters even though I thought he loved to hear his own voice so much that he couldn't resist throwing in the last word as the legendary Dick Schaap wrapped the program and the camera began to pull out to the credit roll. He'd always have to shoot a quick little line in, and I used to think to myself, "Prick."

Ortiz for MVP is a fair argument. I'll admit it. If ever a DH was in the running, Ortiz has shown that he deserves to be mentioned in the argument. With a freakish September at the plate, and with one superhuman feat after the other, this guy is as scary a player as I've seen in a long time. Last year was hard to watch because you knew that the Yankees could throw Gator and Mariano and Power Man/Iron Fist out to the mound and he was going to launch another ball into the right field upper deck. I actually like the guy. That's huge for me when a Red Sox player is concerned.

Having said all that, Lupica is a jerk. Ortiz doesn't play the field. He doesn't run the bases like A-Rod. He simply mashes XBHs like they're potatoes. A-Rod may not be as valuable to the Yankees as Ortiz is to the Red Sox, but the fact remains that the award is given to the best player in the AL, and not the guy who wins the most games for his team. If that were the case, the award should go to Mo Rivera every year.

A-Rod does everything and if you count his run-saving plays in the field as home runs, he'd probably have broken Bonds single season record a few times over. Case in point, iin last night's game he made a stunning play to end the inning with an Oriole streaking down the third base line as the tying run. That was the game right there. Likewise the double play ball that ended the game a few days ago saved the day with guys poised to score and break our backs.

Without Ortiz, there would have been no Red Sox pennant race. We would have overtaken them a few weeks ago. But the fact remains that we DID overtake them and A-Rod's bat and glove and legs on base made much of it happen. No denying it Mr. Lupica. Get over yourself.

4 bp1   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:49 am

4.  Yo mikeplugh,



5 KJC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:55 am

5.  Good post, mikeplugh. The difference in the A-Rod vs. Ortiz for MVP argument (besides the position player vs. DH) is your point that "Without Ortiz, there would have been no Red Sox pennant race." If the Yankees didn't have A-Rod, I think they would still be where they are (just with a different All-Star 3rd baseman). Without Ortiz, this year the Sox would be in 2nd place (well, more so...) at best.

That said, I think A-Rod should be MVP -- his numbers are comparable, and you can't ignore him in the field. Ortiz is definitely more "valuable" to the Sox than A-Rod is to the Yanks, but that's not how people vote on this. (My guess on who will actually win the MVP? Whoever's team is in first on Oct. 3...)

6 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:56 am

6.  I skimmed that article and it was so ridiculous--not the idea that Ortiz could be the MVP, but Lupica's arguments--that I didn't even bother linkin' it. Let's move on.

7 Paul in Boston   ~  Sep 22, 2005 6:59 am

7.  While we're coming up with game-saving defensive plays A-Rod has made, how about the 5-2-3 DP he started July 17 at Fenwayin the bottom of the 9th, with bases loaded and no outs, score 5-3 Yanks? Not just game-saving, but game-saving against your closest divisional rival. Plus he hit a 2-out home run in that game ...

Ortiz is great. A-Rod still gets my "vote."

8 DarrenF   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:04 am

8.  Lupica is the worst of the worst. If you received your baseball knowledge from Lupica, you'd think that Womack was going to be a fan favorite, that Mariano was shot, that ARod is going to move to 1b soon because he is such a bad fielder at 3b, that the Mets are about to take over NY baseball, that Wright-and-Reyes are about to overtake ARod-and-Jeter. On and on and on.

If you perceive a pro-Met and anti-Yankee (especially anti-ARod) prejudice, it's hardly your imagination. Lupica gladly admits rooting for the Mets and his personal dislike for ARod. Which helps explain why, as late as early September, Lupica wrote in his column that the Mets might catch the Braves.

"Ortiz for MVP" is obviously a valid argument. That's not insulting. But the endless and pointless disrespect of ARod vis a vis Mariano and Giambi and Sheffield ... and Soriano and Aurbrey Huff ... it's insulting to Human Intelligence.

ARod is hitting .291 with RISP, .291 with RISP and 2 outs, .400+ with the bases loaded. He has one error since June, or something like that. The people who vote for ARod over Ortiz are absolutely 100% voting for his glove and his baserunning, in addition to his 1.000+ OPS. He's the best player on the Yankees and he's the best player in the American League.

Oh, and ARod has more game-winning RBIs than Ortiz.

9 mikeplugh   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:12 am

9.  Alex....that's why I didn't post the link either. If anyone wants to read it, please find it on your own. I couldn't stomach feeding his readership anymore than I did by mentioning his column.

If someone wants to vote for Ortiz, go for it. There's an argument to be made. Just not Lupica's.

Can't wait for him to start piling on my Knicks. They deserve it, but he'll find a stupid angle.

10 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:20 am

10.  Great point mikeplugh, I agree Ortiz is nasty and I like him too.

We shouldn't only question where the Sawx would be w/o Ortiz hitting those homers and 'clutch' hits, but where would the Yankees be if they had taken the season series vs. the Rays and not broke even with the Royals. I know where we'd be, we wouldn't be worrying about the AL East or the playoffs and ARod would be the unanimous MVP choice. However, I was thinking about this after I was on my 3rd bowl and I was watching (very sadistically I might add) Orsillo and Jim Rice agonize over Manny not running out another ground ball, NESN is great with their doom-and-gloom reporting. Especially when they were discussing the Jeter-Giambi double play, they kept referring to it as "the Yankees got a break their from the umps" even though replays clearly showed Giambi's foot was on the bag. I was happy to see BBTN didn't go the same route.

Anyhow, I know I was listening to the radio yesterday and people were ripping Torre for having a lineup with Lawton, Crosby and Flaherty. I was one of the few that understood the reason for the lineup. These men need a day off, we need to figure out a way to have our best players at their best when we play the Sawx next week. Good job Joe, I'll be giving kudos to Joe every chance I get. Just cause I don't want the not-so-sweet Lou in da Bronx.

11 pistolpete   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:26 am

11.  A-Rod makes two outstanding plays at third last night and arguably saves 2 runs in a 1-run contest.

THAT's why he's the MVP- sorry 'Papi'.

12 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:29 am

12.  I'm getting sick of the MVP debate, I want the AL East. I smell blood and it ain't coming from Schilling's sock this time.....the Yankees have to be scavengers from here on out. Eat'em up boys...eat'em up.

13 Felix Heredia   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:33 am

13.  Ortiz is in the running for MVP because he comes up with big hits. If that's enough of a reason to award someone the MVP, why didn't Sheffield win it last year?

Last year Vladdy's home runs and RBIs were similar to Sheffield's but Vladdy had a better average . . . kinda like the difference between A-Rod and Ortiz . . . .

14 rmd0311   ~  Sep 22, 2005 7:57 am

14.  I agree with Dimelo... While I love the MVP talk and I love that a Yankee will more than likely get the MVP. They could give that to Ortiz for all I care as LONG as we get the AL East.

We're up by 1/2 a game which will be made up tonight. So after tonight there's a possibility for a full game or a tie.

We need to beat them while they are down, we need to win and win convincingly... I wish we could get a real laugher. I really, really wish.

15 Schteeve   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:02 am

15.  For the poster who said that without A-Rod the Yankees would probably still be where they are just with a different All-Star 3Bman. I say, "bunk." Without A-Rod I don't think the Yankees are within shouting distance of the post-season.

16 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:04 am

16.  Tonight the Yanks face Bruce Chen. He's 1 - 0, 4.96 ERA and .281 BAA vs. the Yanks this year. Let's even his record against us today. He's not that good, but he's the type of pitcher that comes out of nowhere and pitches 8 innings of 2 run ball. WE NEED TO REST Mo and Gordon. Please, please let it be a blowout.

BTW, was anyone else scared when they saw Sturtze warming up in the 2nd inning? I thought I was having flashbacks of game 5 vs. the Marlins when fat-boy Wells went down.

17 joe in boston   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:07 am

17.  Always remember where Lupica comes from (New Hamp.) and where he went to college (Boston College).

He's a putz.

18 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:15 am

18.  To me, the MVP question is simple:

WARP1 (Wins Above Replacement Player, adjusted for league, park, and position, includes defense and offense, from Baseball Prospectus*):
A-Rod: 9.6
Ortiz: 7.7**

*PS: freely available
**PPS: clearly shows that its easier for the Sox to have replaced Ortiz with another DH than it is for the Yanks to have replaced A-Rod with another 3B.

That is all. ;)

19 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:17 am

19.  As for the game, I'm looking forward to a blowout win tonight, and a full game lead. Bernie in CF and Bubba in RF, Posada behind the plate, and with the lefty Chen pitching, Phillips at 1B - I'm calling it now.

20 Max   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:18 am

20.  I don't have a problem with Ortiz as MVP, even though I don't really care about who wins MVP.

But Alex is right on, it wasn't the broad issue of MVP that was laughable about Loopy's article, it was the transparency of his attempts to be a killjoy in the middle of a tight race that (for the moment) has tilted the Yankees' way.

Nowadays, even when Loopy tries to summon up some simulated passion for the stirring moments in the Yankees' current run (like Bubba's home run on Monday), he sounds painfully forced. He may be a good writer, but he isn't even faking it very well these days.

I sure hope we can hit Chen today, because I think more than a few of us are on pins and needles wondering what we're going to get from Moose.

21 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:21 am

21.  Yeah, it's the soft tossers like Hendrickson and Chen who seem to have given the Yanks trouble this year. I never thought much of Chen but looked at his ERA the other day and damn if he hasn't had a fine season.

But you'd think the Yanks will have to pound him in order to get the win tonight because who really knows what to expect from Moose.

22 KYK   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:21 am

22.  Hey all - I don't know if this is appropriate, but I have an extra ticket to the game tonight. Does anyone feel like going with me?

23 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:22 am

23.  For those who haven't read it yet: in today's Pinstriped Bible, Steven Goldman makes the same argument many of us were making the other day, about calling up some of the kids from AA/AAA to work out of the 'pen, instead of the Embrees of the world.

Strangely, he doesn't mention Colter Bean, but he covers everyone we thought of (and a couple more).

24 Jen   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:22 am

24.  Actually I think Manny is the most valuable player on the BoSox. Without him hitting behind Ortiz, Papi would get pitched around more often.

25 KJC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:25 am

25.  // I'm getting sick of the MVP debate, I want the AL East. //

Hear, hear!

26 pistolpete   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:27 am

26.  Good point, Jen...

On another note, can anyone dig up a stat where it shows what Boston's winning percentage is when Ortiz and/or Manny hit a homer?

27 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:42 am

27.  Look guys.

The continued banter concerning the MVP award only lends credibility to those writers who somehow believe that Ortiz deserves it, and simply fuels their position, no matter how specious it may be.

Remember, the writers give this award, not players. As far as I am concerned the award itself has no credibility.

Between 1911 and 1914--The only point in MLB history in which the award had any credibility at all--and thanks in no small part to Ty Cobb, the MVP award, and the car (Ford Motor Company, originator of the Award) that went with it, would go to the one player in each league who was the "…most important and useful player to his club…"

Since 1930, the award has been given by the writers, usurped by the Sporting News, a shift that has given the award, as far as I am concerned, no more significance than this year's Comeback Player of the Year Award.

When the award goes to the players for a vote, or reverts to a "most important to your club" standard, I will give a rats ass about it, until then, who cares? It may as well go back to what it was at its inception; just give it to the guy with the highest average, rather than the current convoluted standard written mainly to bail the writers out of any MVP Award that catches flack in the media.

Read the standard, they'll say.

We don't make the rules, they'll say.

The value of a player to a particular club is only one element to the award, they'll say.

The writers used to be writers, not media whores. It was articulate and thoughtful, and often left you with a chill when reading a great piece about your home team. These guys aren't writers, just ignore the whole thing, maybe it will go away, or, better yet, our apathy will persuade the league to give some credibility back to this award, and make it mean something again.

If the so-called writers would like to give the award to a one tool player, who doesn't even work hard at the one thing he can, running the bases and playing hard on offense, they can go ahead; they are the only people who care about this award anymore anyway! It will just add evidence to what we all already know; they haven't a clue concerning baseball.

[Last night, just one was more example of Ortiz's and Manny's selfish lazy attitude on the base-paths, setting a bad example for their team, and bad for baseball in general]

Even the NFL gets their MVP right most of the time; what a sad commentary indeed, when the NFL is more competent than baseball, at anything.

28 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 8:44 am

28.  And guys, Alex Belth already pointed out that Arod has more hits than Otiz in 2005 that provided the Game Winning RBI, and yet still the debate rages, let it go.

29 KJC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:08 am

29.  // Last night, just one was more example of Ortiz's and Manny's selfish lazy attitude on the base-paths //

I (unfortunately) watched the game -- there was no example of Ortiz's "lazy attitude." Manny, on the other hand, was maddeningly in rare form...

30 JohnnyC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:09 am

30.  I agree with pretty much everything you guys said about Lupica but let's get this straight: he is one of the few members of the national (indeed even local) baseball press who is actually a Yankees fan (go read his book "Summer of '98" for chapter and verse about how 4 generations of Lupica men have rooted for the pinstripes...yes there are Yankees fans in New England). He's an obnoxious blowhard, agreed. But he doesn't hate the Yankees...he despises Steinbrenner, plain and simple. Many of the posters to this blog would concur with his general opinion of George. If he seems to attack the Yankees (mostly on payroll issues), it's his way of killing George, not the team necessarily. In summary, though, Lupica is a tough writer and person to like.

31 DarrenF   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:11 am

31.  I like talking about MVP races, even if I don't care too much either way and, naturally, I'd take a playoff spot anyday.

Anyway, for those who are interested in this kind of thing, I stumbled upon an interesting MVP race.

Check out Rogers Hornsby's 1922 season and then check out how many MVP votes he received.

That is all.

32 markp   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:21 am

32.  If Ortiz played for the Yanks and Arod for Boston, this wouldn't even be a discussion. How can a player that plays defense (and GG quality D at that) not be more valuabler than a DH with similar offensive numbers? It's absurd.

33 JohnnyC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:39 am

33.  Go over to Steve Lombardi's blog Was Watching where he explodes the image of David Ortiz as the best clutch hitter in the game. He's not even the best clutch hitter on his own team. And, as Steve points out, if we are to follow RSN's argument for Ortiz and apply it to 2004's MVP race, Sheffield should have won it over Vlad. And even more to the point (about DHs deserving to win an MVP), Steve shows us why Edgar Martinez should have won the MVP over, yes, Mo Vaughn in 1995, using the Ortiz rationale.

34 uburoisc   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:44 am

34.  If Ortiz wins the MVP as a DH, it is just one more reason to get rid of the DH. Playing the field, especially on a contending team, is a damn difficult thing to do and definately contributes to a host of psychological influences on a player. Having a slump, for example, at the plate is made so much worse when making game-losing errors in the field. Having 40k fans boo you in the field after bobbling a grounder letting in a run makes an impression on a player. If David Ortiz played 1B for the Sox, his numbers would probably be lower, and his fielding would have lost games for them, games he would feel responsible for--and that alters a hitter (trying to hard at the plate, swinging for redemption, etc). Arod plays the full game really well, Ortiz plays an important facet really well.

35 Alex Belth   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:58 am

35.  I killed Luis Matos for dogging it down the first base line last night but didn't stay up to see the highlights of the Boston game, where apparently Manny loafed a similar ground ball too. There is a photo-link to the scene at the Dirt Dogs site for anyone who might be interested: http://bostondirtdogs.boston.com/Headline_Archives/2005/09/runofthemill_ef.html

36 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 9:58 am

36.  KJC,

I love Harold Reynold's description of Manny; "You create the monster, you have to live with the monster." No legging out a single, it is so disturbing, as to be funny. The Sox will not be able to trade him without pitching in a huge chunk of his salary. Add Manny to the list of reasons 500 HR shouldn't be an automatic Hall Pass.

I assume you guys heard about Rafael Palmiero's 13 year old "I'm holding it for someone mom," excuse today. He actually blamed a teammate, and reportedly named the individual, who he claims "gave" him the Winstrol containing substance. Wow, I wouldn't want to be in Raffy's shoes right now, he is going to get one hell of an ass woopin.

37 Matt B   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:01 am

37.  I feel like getting worked up about who wins the post-season awards is something that should be done by fans whose teams are out of it. Let's forget about the MVP and the Cy and just win this mothergrabbin' division crown.

38 rbj   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:08 am

38.  Lupica pines for the days of General von Steingrabber, when you could take George to task for constantly screwing up the Yankees. I've given up on sports columnists, but the most insane thing is the NYTimes putting Selena Roberts behind their pay wall. If you want me to pay to not read her, fine. If you want to pay me to read her, fine. Just don't ask me to pay to read her.

And can a bunch of you guys in the city grab Mo before he gets to the staduim. He really needs a day or two off. If he's not around he can't get used.

39 unpopster   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:14 am

39.  One gets the feeling that Manny comes up to the plate looking to hit it out of the park, and if he doesn't he rather not have to run the bases at all.

If he should happen to hit a fielder's choice type ground ball that might result in him on first base -- what the heck, just loaf it and take a seat back on the bench where it's nice and confortable.

40 Schteeve   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:26 am

40.  Alex, you made a good point about the soft tossers. It seems to me the Yankees lineup is full of a lot of great fastball hitters, who struggle against offspeed pitchers.

One way to statistically define this would be to look at thier BA or OBP by count. Do they hit inordinatly better in "fastball" counts?

Anyone else have any insight on this?

41 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:40 am

41.  Schteeve.

I am going to be a wise ass here, but I'm fairly certain most teams hit better in "fastball" counts...sorry...had to say it.

42 JohnnyC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 10:52 am

42.  It might actually be more accurate to describe the Yankees line-up as full of slider-speed bats. No crime in that. Outside of Sheffield, there is no one in the line-up who you would count on to hit consistent mid-nineties heaters. And some of the best hitters in the game are essentially breaking ball hitters who hit fastballs when they have too much of the plate and down: Manny Ramirez is exhibit A. The number of guys who can hit 95 mph fastballs above the belt is probably 1 or 2 per team. Now mediocre fastballs or, as Kitty calls 'em, bad sliders are very, very hittable.

43 TracedOut   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:11 pm

43.  The worst part about being in Boston is not being able to watch these games. God, I want to see if Moose has anything today.

44 Rich   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:15 pm

44.  I will say it again: Mariano is the real AL MVP. It's not even close.

45 Schteeve   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:16 pm

45.  Stormer, Thanks I was aware of that. But how much better or worse would be interesting to see.

46 Schteeve   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:18 pm

46.  I don't buy that slider speed bat thing. I think that's something I heard McCarver talking about at length so I have no faith in it.

Most fastballs aren't 95 either, but I'm getting into a real hairsplitting hypothesis here, so I'll just drop it.

47 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:19 pm
48 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:21 pm

48.  TracedOut they have the Major League Baseball package, splurge and get some.

49 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:42 pm

49.  Dimelo,


Everyone should read this article. Hey Keith! Johnny from Burger King pays your fucking salary, shut it you one year wonder. You are likely the only one who is surprised that you blow this year. I hate Boston, and even I'm offended by this clowns poor poor me bullshit.

One decent year in Oakland, one in Boston, the league saw your stuff a few times, Bang! That is how it works with mediocre pitchers who don't adapt to the hitters. You were never that good to begin with Keith, that is why you're not pitching well, sorry your coaches and agent don't have the heart to tell you. It aint that complicated, go slink off in your hole and stop bashing fans and media for your pittiful display!


50 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:44 pm

50.  Schteeve,

Damn right! My fastball is 72, and I am so proud I could just spit!

51 Sars   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:47 pm

51.  "One gets the feeling that Manny comes up to the plate looking to hit it out of the park, and if he doesn't he rather not have to run the bases at all."

Well...yeah. We've had that feeling for a good three years now. I think what puzzles most people isn't whether he's loafy sometimes (he is) or why; it's that it seldom seems to come with any consequences for him.

Every time the Manny discussion starts up again I'm relieved he's another team's problem.

52 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:49 pm

52.  Remember when Gammons professed that Foulke was the elite closer in the game? Even over Mariano. Gammons caught the gas face.....

53 Rich   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:50 pm

53.  What kind of role will the Sox give Hansen down the stretch?

54 Rich   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:51 pm

54.  To be fair, Foulke was the reason the Sox beat the Yankees in the ALCS.

55 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:53 pm

55.  There were many reasons the Sawx beat the Yankees, Foulke was just one the many. No need to relive that nightmare though.

56 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 12:59 pm

56.  That is because Gammons doesn't actually know baseball. I am still befuddled by the Hall inducting him. There are so few writers worthy of that honor, and he aint one of them.

As to Manny, he is the product of a Cleveland manager and successive Red Sox managers who fear diciplining him, whether it's scorn of the fans and media, ownership, I don't know, and quite franky, I don't care. He is bad for the game, and the best thing that could happen to him, and the game, is a career ending injury, and yes, I do mean it, no one is better than the game. You don't discipline Manny, as H. Reynolds says "you live with the monster." He has cost them plenty. Good luck trading him; aint going to happen, you're stuck Boston, next!

He is no different than any other spoiled kid, you guys have seen them, or you may be one, in public or the grocery store, at a resuarant, friends kids etc., they dont fear consequence so they have no incentive to behave.

Were you aware that Manny also listens to his ipod in the dugout, yes, in the freakin' dugout! As for Francona, I could not have less respect for a manager that allows a player to push him around.

57 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:01 pm

57.  Rich,

I know, about Foulke, I was simply pointing out that once hitters faced him enough, he stunk up the joint, and if he pitches next year, somewhere else, he'll stink it up again. I have seen his kind come and go for as long as I've watched baseball.

58 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:06 pm

58.  Rich,

The Sox fans are screaming on the message boards for Hansen to close games. They sound just like us, only with an 8th grade education, I'm sorry, it is true though, only we are attempting to persuade the Yankees NOT to pitch particular people.

59 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:10 pm

59.  If the Sawx make the playoffs, can Hansen be on the post-season roster? I thought if they wanted him on the roster he had to be called up before August 31. Am I correct?

60 unpopster   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:15 pm

60.  Dimelo,

Teams have loop holes that they use to get around this:

By Aug. 31st they have to set their 40 man rosters for the playoffs. But teams often put a disabled player on the roster as a "placeholder". Once it's time to add a player after the 31st, they simply pull the DL'd player off and replace him with the preferred player.

Therefore, I assume that there is a player on the Sox 40-man roster that has had a seasonlong injury. They'll simply pull his name and replace it with Hansen.

61 Nick from Washington Heights   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:16 pm

61.  Manny is a legend. Growing up in Washington Heights, you'd hear stories about this guy named Manny doing ridiculous things at GW. I can't help but root for the hero of the neighborhood. What an amazing player/space cadet. I like him also for the fact that he wants to get traded once a year because he realizes Boston sucks. Then he forgets.

62 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:20 pm

62.  To me, Foulke's value as a reliever is that he can pitch multiple innings effectively - a LOT of them. If he can't pitch effectively, or he can't pitch many innings effectively, then its wise for Boston to shut him down.

Of course, I wish they wouldn't. =)

63 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:25 pm

63.  Dimelo,

As to Gammons and Foulke: And Sean Salisbury Steak professed Bill Belichek to be the best coach EVER following week 1, yep, week 1. I wonder what he will say when th Pats' lost two in a row. Will he say, Bill Cowher is the best coach ever?

That isn't journalism by Gammons and company on ESPN, it's drivvle, and it's not even entertaining anymore. Harold Reynolds, get out before they get to you too!

Dimelo, The player has to be on the DL or on the 25 man roster Aug 31. Further, if a player is on the DL, and still injured at the end of the season, he may be replaced; if a player on the 25 man roster is injured between Sep. 1 and the end of the season, he may be replaced. Pitcher for pitcher. Batter for batter.

64 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:26 pm

64.  unpopster,

ooops, you beat me to it, and said it more eloquently than I did.

65 KJC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:27 pm

65.  // One decent year in Oakland, one in Boston, the league saw [Foulke's] stuff a few times //
He also had a few good years in Chicago. And no matter how good he was last year, nobody would pick Foulke over Rivera.

// Were you aware that Manny also listens to his ipod in the dugout //
Could you point me to the proof of this? I can't seem to find anything on the web about it, and I've never seen or heard this before.

// I assume that there is a player on the Sox 40-man roster that has had a seasonlong injury. //
I would guess Wade Miller or Matt Mantei.

// I like him also for the fact that he wants to get traded once a year because he realizes Boston sucks. Then he forgets. //
THAT is funny!

66 Max   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:27 pm

66.  Living in Boston and having watched Manny for a number of years, I just don't see him as the disgrace or cancer that some fans make him out to be.

Is he the model of a hustling, team-oriented player? No way. Is he a child-like eccentric that is tolerated by the teams he plays for because of his massive talent? I think this is closer to the truth.

I think he just isn't aware of the consequences of what he does on a consistent basis. For all the money he makes, perhaps he should, but if you spend any time watching him, he just doesn't spend enough time on this planet on a regular basis to really comprehend baseball etiquette. He's just, you know, Manny.

67 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:28 pm

67.  Nick - I went to Kennedy, I live (actually my mom still lives there) in the Heights and I remember all those amazing things. I was in school at the same time Manny went there and I was a big fan of his, until last year. I remember going to a game at Kennedy and seeing Manny launch one into the Spuyten Duyvil. He signed with Cleveland for $400K and no one ever thought he was going to be the player he is now, but through it all he just became a dick (at least in my eyes). Especially after he was waving around the stupid sign during their victory parade about Jeter playing golf. I thought that was so classless. I'm Dominican too, but you didn't see Pedro doing something stupid like that and we were his 'Daddies'.

I like Ortiz, but Manny just doesn't play the game right. I feel the same for Manny, as I do for Sammy. I love Dominican ball players, Vlad is my favorite but I don't like it when a ball player thinks they are bigger than the game. Despite us sharing the same nationality.

68 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:29 pm

68.  Nick,

Isn't Gotti a hero in some part of the city as well. Doesn't mean you have to root for him to kill people and get off scott free, does it?

Root for Willie to do well instead, k?

69 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:32 pm

69.  KJC,

Ipod. hmm, I saw something on that sox site dirtdogs.com, and they ran footage on Cold Pizza on ESPN I think. I know it's been verified, let me see what else I can find.

70 Dimelo   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:34 pm

70.  Stormer, I would hardly consider the comparison between Gotti and Manny accurate. I would say that Manny is a cross between Albert Belle and Randy Moss.

71 Nick from Washington Heights   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:36 pm

71.  Stormer, whoa buddy. Comparing Gotti to Manny. Well, that just isn't right, my friend.

My favorite player growing up: Willie Randolph. I'll always root for the guy.

72 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:38 pm

72.  Dimelo,

here is one, I will look later.


73 Max   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:38 pm

73.  It's been pointed out on other boards that it's savvy to shut down Foulke now because he's just two appearances short of having his option picked up for 2007. Plus, he's only a shell of the pitcher he was the last couple of years.

On top of this, he's obviously going through some sort of personal hell. His public persona has always been that of an ass who barely tolerates the media and the fans, but he's put his foot in his mouth so many times this year that he clearly needs a break from everything for a while.

Even with his personal issues, though, I'm less than impressed with his having bolted from the team already...this is much more selfish than anything Manny's done.

Dimelo, the comparisons to Belle and Moss are OTT, IMHO. Manny's immature and self-centered, but nowhere as venal as those guys.

74 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:42 pm

74.  I knew that Gotti metaphor would get you.

Ok ok, David Berkowitz as well, were you rooting for him to get out and drop by for coffee?

I guess my point is made. Manny is a bum, it doesn't matter where he is from!

75 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 1:50 pm

75.  Foulke did not have better than average years in Chicago, by the way.

76 Rich   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:28 pm

76.  Lawton in RF over Bubba tonight. No Giambi.

77 JohnnyC   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:32 pm

77.  Stormer, to back up your point...Foulke was the prototypical old school closer. That is, he would follow a good year with a bad year on cue. That's why Mo is amazing...his consistency and longevity. Foulke wore out his welcome with the White Sox accordingly and Billy Beane thought it prudent to avoid the bad year by letting him go (in addition to his horrible playoff performance). Not to relive this again but Foulke's playoff performance last year was simply way, way beyond anything he had ever shown even in his good seasons. And the irony, of course, is that he'd been awful against the Yankees...until last Fall. What clicked? Beats me. Whatever it was, he ain't got it no more.

78 Rich   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:41 pm

78.  Jeter

79 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:43 pm

79.  Rich re: 76 who's at first then, Tino?

This seems like a clear case of Torre playing the hot hand. I like Lawton, and see some value to getting him back on track, but Moose is a little too prone to flyballs this year . . . I'd take Bubba's defense and equally hot hitting.

80 randym77   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:45 pm

80.  After Torre's brilliance in playing Lawton last night, I'm not gonna criticize the lineup tonight. ;-)

81 Shaun P   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:49 pm

81.  Thanks, Rich - you just knew I'd ask. =)

Cano in the two-hole? Oh Lord . . . maybe its not such a bad choice:

Cano vs LHP: .266/.304/.336
Bernie vs LHP: .238/.319/.299

I know this leaves out Bellhorn (.232/.330/.414 vs LHP) but Cano has been hitting AND fielding well. I like his glove better than Bellhorn's, and Moose is 21st in AL in ground ball/fly ball ratio.

Phillips vs Tino - doesn't matter, Phillips will never get the chance.

82 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:53 pm

82.  Rich.

No Cano in the 2 hole! Didn't we learn anything earlier in the year, or last year?

Arod fits best at 2, Cano can shore up the lower half.

83 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:55 pm

83.  Tino must be in there. It's not like Phillips is making the post-season roster. Get Tino some AB's. If there is one guy in that dugout to be loyal to, it's Tino.

Don't you guys forget what Tino is capable of come crunch time!

84 Schteeve   ~  Sep 22, 2005 2:59 pm

84.  Randy, criticize the hell out of it, it worked well last night ;)

85 Stormer Sports   ~  Sep 22, 2005 3:05 pm

85.  I'm going to miss the game tonight, not happy, I have to go out a' drinkin with potential contacts for some future work, since Alex won't let me wrote the forward to his book. . . . I may throw in a few too many pejoratives concerning the Red Sox . . .impartial schmimpartial I say.

I'd ask one of you to text me the score but throwing up my cell number would probably be a mistake.

Go Moose!
Go Bats!
Go Yankees!

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