"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

News of the Day – 9/23/09

Today’s news is powered by the Double Dutch Bus:

The Yankees announced on Tuesday that they plan to welcome United States Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and Panama President Ricardo Martinelli to throw ceremonial first pitches this weekend at Yankee Stadium.

Sotomayor, a Bronx native, will take the mound on Saturday, prior to the Yankees’ game against the Red Sox. Martinelli will perform the honors the evening before, on Friday, as New York opens its important three-game series with Boston.

The invitations are part of the Yankees’ continuing celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month.

  • AL Cy Young contender Zack Greinke speaks of the comfort of pitching in KC:

Had he waited until free agency, or even just until the end of this year, he would have been in line for tens of millions more. But security had substantial appeal, especially given that Greinke recognized that Kansas City offered him a comfortable environment, on and off the field.

Even so, Greinke’s growing confidence becomes evident in hearing him suggest that he could succeed outside of the cocoon of the only organization that he has ever known.

“[The environment] had a lot to do with [signing the extension], for sure,” said Greinke. “Now, maybe New York would bother me, but I don’t think anywhere else would bother me anymore. Even though I’m in Kansas City, I’ve gotten used to it a lot more. New York, I still might have trouble in New York. I probably would. But I think almost everyone does.”

  • Pete Abraham does some math to figure out what Andy Pettitte will end up earning this year.  (By the way, Pete’s last day at LoHud is Sept. 29)
  • Andy Pettitte declares himself to be over that shoulder fatigue.
  • All hail Mark Teixeira!:

Besides ranking second in homers, Teixeira leads the league in runs batted in (118), total bases (326) and extra-base hits (82). He came into the Yankees’ series against the Angels on a tear, with 16 hits in his previous 33 at-bats to raise his average to .292.

His all-around contributions to the Yankees, who have the majors’ best record (95-55 through Sunday), would make Teixeira a strong candidate for the Most Valuable Player award in most seasons. Predictably, his teammates endorse him.

“Just the runs he saves on defense, making every play over there at first base, just that alone deserves votes for M.V.P.,” Sabathia said Saturday in Seattle. “You look at all he does on defense, never mind the 37 homers and leading the league in R.B.I.”

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, 31 players have led their league in homers, runs batted in, total bases and extra-base hits since the modern M.V.P. was first presented in 1931. Nineteen of those players have won the award, most recently Ken Griffey Jr. of the Seattle Mariners in 1997.

  • Joba Chamberlain turns 24 today.

[My take: Maybe he'll get a steady slot in the rotation for a present?]

  • On this date in 1999, by drawing 27,549 fans, the Yankees break the New York City season attendance record with a total of 3,072,009. The Mets had previously held the record when 3,047,724 turned the turnstiles in 1988.
  • On this date in 2001, Mariano Rivera establishes a franchise single-season record with his 47th save. The previous record was held by Dave Righetti who has 46 saves in 1986.

Categories:  Diane Firstman  News of the Day

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27 comments

1 Raf   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:30 am

On this date in 1999, by drawing 27,549 fans, the Yankees break the New York City season attendance record with a total of 3,072,009.

Amazing what a winning ballclub will do.

2 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:33 am

The invitations are part of the Yankees’ continuing celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month.

What; no Hugo Chavez or Elian Gonzalez? >;)

It would be nice if Bernie were to... nah. It would actually be nice if he won a Latin Grammy so he may be convinced to officially retire; then we can honor him the way he should be honored (Bernie Williams Day, retired number, hoopla and craziness for all).

3 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:37 am

[1] Remember when 2,000,000 was a mind-boggling number to baseball fans?

4 Diane Firstman   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:42 am

[3]

The Pirates are envious of that number still ... they've done that only 3 times in their history.
http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/PIT/attend.shtml

5 Yankee Mama   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:42 am

I think I'm still in denial that Pete Abe's last day is the 29th. It's the print media verision of being poached by Theo Epstein.

6 RagingTartabull   ~  Sep 23, 2009 10:58 am

its still wacky to me that the Twins drew 3,000,000 a full decade before the Yankees ever did

7 Yankee Mama   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:14 am

[6] Being an indoor stadium might have had something to do with it. April at YS is not much fun.

I can't imagine how the Twins are going to draw fans next spring in their outdoor stadium.

8 RIYank   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:16 am

Here's a News of the Day item that Diane omitted, put in the form of a Very Easy Trivia Question:

What has Mark Reynolds done more times already this year than Joe Dimaggio did in all seasons from 1938 to 1948 (inclusive) combined?

9 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:29 am

[8] Pick his nose in public? (You're right, that was easy >;)

10 ms october   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:39 am

[8] struck out - we need to keep this tidbit secret to weeping

11 Diane Firstman   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:40 am

[9]

Correct .... Reynolds has a very high batting average with boogers in picking position.

(OK .... that was a totally juvenile statement on my part) :-P

12 Diane Firstman   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:42 am

[10]

That's some interesting stat line Mr. Reynolds has compiled ...
http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/r/reynoma01-bat.shtml

13 Diane Firstman   ~  Sep 23, 2009 11:46 am

The Boss (not George) turns 60 (!!) today ...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Springsteen

14 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:04 pm

[11] The id has to see the light from time to time, nothing wrong with that :)

15 ms october   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:15 pm

[12] it really is odd - he is not a tto guy, yet he has all those k's and hr's

[11] i think you meant a high picking average :}

[9] next to bp management that is the second thing i miss the least about torre

16 RIYank   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:35 pm

I know, Reynolds is a helluva hitter. Some reporter asked him to comment on his breaking of his own record, and Reynolds said, "Who cares?" And he's right, of course.
Although obviously you'd rather have Chone Figgins, who makes a lot of productive outs.
And I do mean a lot. He makes a whooooole lot of outs, and I'm sure plenty of them are productive.

17 The Hawk   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:40 pm

... A gold star for "boogers in picking position" ...

18 williamnyy23   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:53 pm

If Greinke is right, and New York was that much more difficult a place to play, then shouldn't that be quantfiable in monetary terms? In other words, there must be some premium that NY teams pay to get players who can handle the city. If that's the case, a salary cap would be inherently unfair to NY teams.

19 williamnyy23   ~  Sep 23, 2009 12:54 pm

By the way, the story behind Double Dutch Bus is amazing. Apparently, it was produced by a cocaine wring leading dentist.

20 The Hawk   ~  Sep 23, 2009 1:46 pm

[18] Doesn't he have social anxiety disorder though? I think he may be a special case, so to speak.

21 Chyll Will   ~  Sep 23, 2009 1:52 pm

[15] Torre's booger-picking management is HoF caliber... (unfortunately)

22 51cq24   ~  Sep 23, 2009 2:04 pm

[16] chone's career on base is .362. this year it's .397. not too bad.

23 RIYank   ~  Sep 23, 2009 2:21 pm

[22] Chone is regularly on the leader board for Most Outs Made.

24 51cq24   ~  Sep 23, 2009 2:26 pm

[23] strange with a pretty good obp. i guess he just comes up a lot. or maybe he has a lot of sacrifice bunts.

25 Raf   ~  Sep 23, 2009 2:30 pm

If Greinke is right, and New York was that much more difficult a place to play, then shouldn’t that be quantfiable in monetary terms? In other words, there must be some premium that NY teams pay to get players who can handle the city.

NY pays a premium just for the fact that they're NY. As David Justice once quipped, the same steak in NYC goes for a fraction of the cost in Cleveland.

It isn't so much that a player can/cannot handle playing in NY. The problem is unrealistic expectations that are sometime attached to a player. If a player has game, he can play anywhere. Ed Whitson was mediocre before he came to NY, while he was in NY, and after he left NY. Kenny Rogers, same thing. Jeff Weaver, same thing. His work during the NYY portion of his 2002 season was in line with his work in Detroit in 2000 & 2001, and with the Dodgers in 2004.

Players have off years everywhere. Yet, everywhere else don't claim their city as a problem. Back to Weaver, he stunk as an Angel, as a Mariner and as a Cardinal, yet you didn't hear that "pressure" was the reason that he stunk at those stops in his ML career.

26 rbj   ~  Sep 23, 2009 2:31 pm

[20] Yup. I wonder if Ed Whitson had the same thing.
(Ha, after I typed that, I looked up and instead of the "W" I had an "S" there in Whitson).

27 Start Spreading the News   ~  Sep 23, 2009 4:44 pm

[18] A lot of things are hard to quantify in terms of money. And the difficulty of playing in NYC, I think, is one of them.

Still, I think the pressure of playing in NYC is probably offset by the lure of getting to live here. For example, in my field of science, if you are a top tier researcher, you get paid more to live in Kansas City than in NYC because more people want to work here.

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