The discussion around Juan Carlos’s coffee cart started out cold and calculating this morning.
“I hope the Yankees are already talking to CC and A.J. and maybe Lowe and Teixeira,” someone said. “We need to sign a couple of arms and maybe another bat even after the Swisher trade.”
Everyone nodded and the matter seemed decided.
Javier – the neighborhood’s voice-of-reason on baseball matters – peeled the lid off his coffee cup and nudged the conversation in another direction.
“I know everyone gets excited about free agents,” Javier said. “There’s some great talent available, but remember that other teams can start talking to our players, too.
“Guys like Jason Giambi and Bobby Abreu played hard and won games for us,” Javier continued. “I know the decision makers can’t get emotional about ballplayers, but we certainly can.”
Everyone nodded again.
“Remember all the times Giambi signed autographs outside the players’ gate?” someone said. “Once he brought an armload of Yankees yearbooks and passed ‘em out. Every time he came over I asked him if we were gonna win the World Series and he always said: ‘I’m gonna do everything I can to make it happen.’”
“How about last year when Abreu got that big walk-off hit,” someone else said. “He came out of the Stadium after the game and was high-fiving everyone. I didn’t have anything for him to autograph so he signed the back of my hand. Now I’d hate to see him sign with anyone else.”
Emotions may sometimes lead to “bad baseball decisions,” but they always point to the best baseball fans.