"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice

Home on the Range

“We were alert out there tonight,” said Texas Manager Ron Washington. “We were ready to play ball. I’m not saying Tampa wasn’t, but we were ready to play ball tonight – and it showed.”

(N.Y. Times)

So it’s the Rangers–who out-Rayed the Rays last night–to take on the Yanks for a chance to go to the Whirled Serious (Steven Goldman says, have no fear, the Rays will be back next year). This is a more balanced Texas team than we’ve seen in the past. They are spirited and fully capable of beating the Yanks (and for all the Rangers news that’s fit to link, check out the Newberg Report). Still,  I like the Bombers’ chances. I’m curious to see if there is any rust for the ol’ Yanks come Friday night. The one thing that can’t happen is coming back to New York down 0-2 to face Cliff Lee. That said, I’ve got confidence in our boys.

Whadda ya hear, whadda say?


1 ms october   ~  Oct 13, 2010 8:43 am

i'm ready. should be a really good series.

i didn't get to watch all of the game, but from what i saw, the rangers are quite capable of wreaking havoc on the bases - the combination of the yankees pitchers and posada have basically no chance to slow them down, just gotta keep them off-base.

yep, agreed alex, the yanks have to get at least one of the first two games.

2 Sliced Bread   ~  Oct 13, 2010 8:47 am

Yanks have to win the Cliff Lee-less games.
[0] dude, you seriously doubted him last night? Total postseason stud.
Go git him, Cash.

3 Alex Belth   ~  Oct 13, 2010 8:48 am

2) I did. I thought Price would be better. Shows what I know.

4 Sliced Bread   ~  Oct 13, 2010 8:54 am

[3] I'm a Cliff Lee Believer. I know some are going to have concerns about his age, and his late development but I'd sign him to 5-6 years in a heartbeat.
He threw 120 pitches last night (90 strikes?) , so maybe the Yanks have a chance at him in Game 3, but I wouldn't count on it.

5 seamus   ~  Oct 13, 2010 9:25 am

To me, both tampa and texas are worthy opponents with strong pitching. Either way we need to play good ball and have good pitching. LET'S GO YAN-KEES!!!

6 rbj   ~  Oct 13, 2010 9:45 am

Should be a good series. I'll say Yankees in 6.

Benji Molina stole a base? Emma's (IIRC) right, Molinas are dangerous this time of year.

7 Professor Longnose   ~  Oct 13, 2010 9:51 am

Whatever their chances, it's just not right to be a Yankee fan and not be negative.

8 The Hawk   ~  Oct 13, 2010 10:14 am

[7] If there's one sports franchise that's not true of, it's the Yankees.

9 williamnyy23   ~  Oct 13, 2010 10:44 am

Even though he acknowledges their importance, I think Goldman is underestimating the impact of losing Benoit, Balfour and Soriano (either all or any combination of the three). Bullpens may be malleable, but you simply can not replace three relievers who were as great as those three were last year. Also, it’s fine to doubt Crawford’s long-term viability, but he was the second best offensive player on the Rays, and only one of two who was well above league average in meaningful at bats. Maybe Desmond Jennings will be as good as Crawford, but even if so, it’s just as likely it will be the case three years from now.

Finally, the Rays have to be concerned by the regressions of Zobrist and Bartlett as well as the continued stagnation of Upton. On the pitching side, they still have Price, but Garza and Shields too big steps back. In fact, after Price, the Rays rotation was league average or much worse.

If you look at the Rays, they really had no business playing as well as they did, and I think much of that is attributable to Maddon. If you start removing his pieces, however, he can’t make a difference. Unless the Rays reverse course on the threatened payroll cuts, I don’t think they will be much of a factor next year.

10 The Hawk   ~  Oct 13, 2010 10:46 am

[9] Stagnation of Upton, indeed. Very disappointing.

11 ms october   ~  Oct 13, 2010 11:35 am

[9] maddon has to at least be in the discussion as to why several players regressed though.

12 boslaw   ~  Oct 13, 2010 11:40 am

So is the Yankees 2011 rotation likely to be Sabathia, Lee, Hughes, Pettitte, Burnett? Is there anyone else they go after if things don't work out with Lee?

Do they go after some alternate 4th/5th starter to prepare for problems with Pettitte/Burnett? Do they rely on Nova and others in the minors to fill that need? Is Joba forever a bullpen guy, and if so, do the Yanks look to move him?

Yes, it's early to discuss this but these off days are killing me. All DLS series are finished but we still have to wait until Friday. I hate baseball scheduling sometimes.

13 OldYanksFan   ~  Oct 13, 2010 11:54 am

[9] They are losing Pena also? Their #3 and #4 batters?
No.... unless the Sox totally fuck up this Winter, and or the Yankees (Posada, Jeter, ARod) seriously age next year, TB is due for 3rd or 4th place.

14 OldYanksFan   ~  Oct 13, 2010 12:03 pm

[12] Are you totally giving up on Joba as a starter? Me.... I let Joba Start next spring and see how he fairs against Pettitte (if he's back) and AJ. When you compare Joba's ERA (as a starter) and Phil's ERA (as a starter), Joba is a 1/2 run better. I'm not saying Joba is better then Phil, but to be high on Hughes and at the same time throw Joba away... it just doesn't make sense.

Joba is still pretty young, very cheap, and still doesn't have a lot of experience under his belt. When you consider what CC costs, what Lee will cost ($20m/yr), and what we paid for #2/#3/#4 type guys in AJ and Javy, how can you not want to see if Joba can start?

I mean, this guy can't be AT LEAST an excellent #5????

And as much as Andy has pleased and amazed me, he is getting to an age where injury or falling off a cliff isn't improbable.

I hope Cashman's on the same page as I am. If Joba ends up just being a decent trade chip... then we really blew it with him.

15 boslaw   ~  Oct 13, 2010 12:50 pm

I agree with you - I haven't given up on Joba but it seems like the organization has (and he may have as well - maybe the result of all of the mismanagement).

16 boslaw   ~  Oct 13, 2010 12:51 pm

Also, where do you put him if you get Lee? Do you bounce him back and forth from BP to starter all year? That doesn't seem to work out very well.

17 williamnyy23   ~  Oct 13, 2010 1:50 pm

[11] I guess, but instead of trying to figure out how a manager's role in a player's performance, I think it makes more sense to look at how he uses what his individual players give him.

[12] Trading Burnett, which will require eating at least half the contract, needs to be seriously explored.

[14] Joba is another player I'd seriously consider trading, although I would not simpyl give him away. If the Yankees can get close to 80-90 cents on the dollar, it might be best to cut bait with Joba and rid the team of another enigma.

18 cult of basebaal   ~  Oct 13, 2010 3:49 pm

I shan't count my Lee until it's hatched.

Texas just signed a HUGE cable contract with Fox Sports.

They're going to have serious cash to throw at Lee.

Who knows how he feels about pitching in Texas, though.

19 Raf   ~  Oct 14, 2010 11:42 am

[12] Blame the television networks, they're the reason scheduling is the way it is.

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