Super Poll: Which is the better management team?

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Kuroda officially becomes a Yankee

This afternoon, he plunked Youkilis.

I Told You So !

I predicted yesterday before Warren's start that his performance would be "disappointing."

I predicted that he would not leave the game with 8 innings of two hit ball behind him, and no more than one run yielded.  That he would not be like all the AA and AAA fill-in starters the Yankees occasionally face, who shut us down as if the Yankees were fielding a high school soft ball team.

I predicted he would go 41/3 innings and give up 5 runs.

I was wrong, and I admit it.  I was way off.

He went 2+ innings and gave up 6 runs.  A total bust.

Put him on the bus to nowhere and throw away his name plate.

 He is just another failure of our minor league system.  Where the Yankees are slipping to the worst rated player inventory ( read; minor league players ) of all the major league teams.  The truth hurts;  every time we actually let play a "touted " prospect, said prospect bombs.

Ivan Nova being the one recent exception.

But watch Phellps, and then DJ Mitchell.  They will suck again, and leave again.

The remaining two B's will be bigger busts.  That's why the Yanks don't ever bring them up.  When that bubble bursts, when the league sees how crappy they truly are, the Yankees will be seen for what they have now become.  An empty suit.

The future is bleak, particularly now that the Steinbrenners no longer even compete for foreign players who can be purchased for deflated dollars.

We are about to be swept by the White Sox.  So much for guys, " stepping up."

No Moonlight Grahams: Give the kid another chance

OK, Adam Warren stank out the joint last night. And 10 weeks of this every fifth day will give me shingles. (The scariest ad on TV is the where the guy looks into the camera and says, "Trust me, this is something you do NOT want to ever have.") But he shouldn't be another Gil Blanco.

Gil Blanco was an exciting young prospect in 1965, the beginning of the end, who was endlessly being touted by Mel Allen. He pitched out of the bullpen and did alright, and the Yankees didn't have much youth in their system, and think about it - Gil Blanco is s great baseball name...  So one day, they gave him a start.

Kaboom. I don't think he made it out of the first inning. I just remember the pain in Mel Allen's voice, it was practically cracking, when they took Blanco out. He never started for us again, and they shipped his butt to KC, which was almost like living out of rest stops on the NYS Thruway.

Give Adam Warren another chance. Yeah, he stank last night. But before we pull the trigger on something that's going to backfire in the long haul - the Sidney Ponsons are swirling overhead - let's try it again. We've got an expensive pitching coach in our dugout. Let's do some work. Let's give this kid another chance. Isn't that what Hope Week is all about.

GIVE ADAM WARREN ANOTHER TRY. WE CANNOT BE THE TEAM THAT NEVER FORGIVES. WE NEED TO BE THE TEAM OF SECOND CHANCES, THE TEAM THAT UNDERSTANDS HOW DIFFICULT IT CAN BE TO PLAY THE GAME OF BASEBALL IN FRONT OF A YANKEE STADIUM CROWD. ADAM WARREN HAS WORKED HARD TO GET THIS FAR. HE NEEDS ANOTHER CHANCE.

NO MOONLIGHT GRAHAM. NO GIL BLANCO. ADAM WARREN NEEDS ANOTHER START. NEXT WEEK. IF YOU FALL OFF THE HORSE, YOU GET RIGHT BACK ON. HAVE THE YANKEE OWNERS NEVER MADE A MISTAKE? HAVE THE YANKEE TOP BRASS EVER MADE A MISTAKE? I BET THEY HAVE. GIVE ADAM WARREN ANOTHER CHANCE.

And if he screws up again, the hell with him.

Friday, June 29, 2012

John & Suzyn's Cultural References of the Game

(Nothing that happened in American popular culture after 1980, and very little after 1970, has ever managed to penetrate the walls of the Lowe's Broadcast Booth. Thus, John and Suzyn's frequent music, stage and film references can easily baffle anyone born after Pearl Harbor. When possible, we'll use 21st century research tools to bring you the stars and stories rattling around in John and Suzyn's mid-20th century minds.)



TOP FOURTH: A discussion of the recent struggles of Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee led John and Suzyn to mention a 1957 hit song, Mr. Lee by The Bobbettes. According to the group's Wikipedia entry:

The Bobbettes were an R&B girl group who had a 1957 top 10 hit song called "Mr. Lee." The group included Jannie and Emma Pought, Reather Dixon, Lara Webb, and Helen Gather… In 1957, the girls released their first hit single, "Mr. Lee," an uptempo song in which the narrator proclaims her devotion to her crush - her school teacher. The girls actually disliked the real-life Mr. Lee and the original lyrics to the song were something of a put-down, but Atlantic insisted the group revise the lyrics… After a series of novelty songs for Atlantic that were unsuccessful, they recorded… "I Shot Mr. Lee." Atlantic refused the song and the group left the label.
 Take it away, young ladies:

Yankee Juju Requests

Tonight, please devote your practice of Juju to these aims:


That the novice Warren might look deep within and find six solid innings

• That Yankee bats might light up the rookie Quintana

• That the Rallye BMW Rally Moment might bear fruit 

• That, should the game be close, Joe might stay his hand from o'er-managing

• That Derek might get a hit and pass the dark lord Cal Ripken, Jr., on the all-time list

Rivalometer


"I think things happen for a reason."
Who gets traded next? 

Mustang



Hey Mustang,

I thought you would like this photo, which documents your help in cleaning up my backyard.

P.S.  You can keep the headphones.

See you soon.  Looking to reprise the parking lot tour.

Are you listening or watching tonight?

Alph

I Think It Is Time For A Prediction


Prediction

I feel as if I am standing on a 65 degree slope of ice.

But here goes:  

You know how when the Yankees first face a pitcher brought up by from AA or AAA to fill-in for a starter for whatever reason?  It could be Detroit, it could be the Oakland A's, it could be Tampa.  

It never matters;  we make that guy's major league debut remind the world of Sandy Koufax.  He goes 8 innings, gives up maybe 1 run and leaves with a secure win for his effort, and endless rhetoric about how he could become a permanent addition to the staff.

But when the Yankees bring up their version of the fill-in starter ( as in tonight's game ), we look to get 4 1/3 innings and not more than 5 runs. 

 Is this what Joe means when he says, " guys are going to have to step up?"

So here's my prediction;  a non-exciting ( you might even say,"disappointing,") start by another mediocre candidate from AAA who can't get that third strike or that third out. 

 A guy who is 5-5 so far.  A guy who can't bail out a teammate if an error is made.  A guy whom no one wants to consider a possible permanent starter in the majors.

And we'll all be debating whether or not he "earned" another start, or a bus ticket home.

And we all know that for our AAA team, there is no home.


It's that time again... time to nominate candidates for IT IS HIGH/LUNCHABLES* YANKEE EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH

That was the month that was. It's over, let it go. Oh what month it was...

Possible nominees:

Robinson Cano, prometheus
Andy Pettitte, safety not guaranteed
Derek Jeter, rock of ages
Dewayne Wise, think like a man
Phil Hughes, that's my boy
Joe Giardi, dark shadows
Brian Cashman, seeking a friend for the end of the world


*Note: Not to be confused, or in any way affiliated, with fine Oscar Mayer brand meat products.

Hooray! Yankees save another $42 million!

With days to go before baseball's Collective Bargaining Agreement kicks in - (a.k.a: the Hypocritical Billionaire Socialism Act of 2012) --placing tax limits on how much money that poor, poverty-stricken owner/heirs can bestow upon their obesely rich, undeserving players, the Steinbrothers have successfully cheesed-out on yet another big ticket international free agent.

The Dodgers - apparently finally done appeasing Mrs. McCourt and her all-star team of divorce lawyers - have signed Yasiel Puig, a 6-foot-3, 210-pound OF international man of mystery from Cuba. They are spending $42 million on Puig.

Is he worth $42 mill? Probably not. But considering the harsh oppression under Fidel Castro's communist regime, limiting the money that honest capitalists can earn, it's impressive for a guy to weigh 210 pounds! It's not like America, where a second baseman can hit the market and demand whatever he's worth - for the next week, anyway. The looming luxury tax/salary cap is courtesy of baseball's $25 million a year man, Bud Selig (who once proposed a Spider-Man 2 weekend, in which all MLB teams put the Spidey logo on bases; home plate was excluded, because Bud is a traditionalist.)

But $42 mill, who's counting? The new CBA takes effect next month. That means it's last call on the free agent Latino buffet - last chance to sign these guys without it counting to the future cap on spending. (It's sort of like the U.S. Presidential election, except in this case, what you spend gets reported.) So the Dodgers grabbed their checkbook and jumped in on Puig, even though he be Pug. (Come on, give me that one; with a name like Smuckers, he has to be good.)

And the Yankees sat it out... again.

KaChing. That's our new mantra. Our motto: "No bid. We pass!" Hell, we just saved $42 million! Not counting the money we didn't spend on Jorge Soler! Oh, by the way, we have no significant position prospect above low Single A, and we may not resign Swisher next winter. Still, the Steinboys' pool man twisted his ankle last week in the Olympic-size hot tub, and we expect a lawsuit. This should cover them, with money left over for chips and dip.

Would we have been wise to sign Puig for $42 mill?

Donno. Don't claim to know. That's not the point.

Here it comes: Over the next week or two, the Yankees to sign a couple giant physical specimens from distant parts of the world, the kind of places from where Madonna adopts kids. If we don't splurge on our last chance to do so, Yankee fans should think of joining that pool man's lawsuit.

We could be staring into a bleak Yankee sunset - old players wheezing with nobody to replace them - suffering at the hands of the Yasiel Puigs. The next two weeks need to be Christmas. It's time to see what's under the tree.

Yankeetorial The Anduw Jones Fatigue Factor

I hate to say this, because last year he blossomed into a pleasant surprise, and I came to like that goofy, yolta-dolta, "gee-wilikers-Mr.-Wizard!" smile. He seems to be liked, a decent human being, a calming presence, a salty old vet. Several winters ago, I wrote a series of compelling and emotionally draining posts - often compared to Spencer Tracy's arguments in "Inherit the Wind" - that the Yankees should sign Andruw Jones. Nobody listened. The bastards.

Now, though, I am growing tired of Andruw Jones.

Last night, he pinch hit in the ninth with Dewayne Wise fidgeting around on first. Until Andruw stepped to the plate, Wise was jumping around like a coke freak, edging towards second, threatening to steal, drawing throws like a carnival clown sitting over a water tank. Once Andruw came up, he stopped. And everybody knew why:

Because Andruw Jones doesn't hit singles. Nope. Doesn't happen. No reason for Wise to steal second. He would only score on an HR. Andruw was up to do what he always does: Hit one out, walk or whiff.

On a team that is dangerously reliant on home runs, Andruw Jones is the worst offender, the extra Philips head screwdriver you don't need in the box. He's the slugger off the bench who isn't slugging. He's not batting his weight, and he's been dieting. It's almost July; he'll probably lose more weight in the heat. And if he gets hot, maybe five HRs in 10 games - no singles - it'll be nice, but we'll simply move deeper the red zone of a first round playoff knockout.

We keep salivating for Brett Gardner to return - although nothing is guaranteed, something's screwy with his elbow. When Gardner does heal, he'll probably replace Wise - which won't change much. Wise is a great fielder. Wise bats LH. Wise steals bases. Lately, Wise has hit.

Gardner will offer a slightly faster, more fragile form of Wise, while  Andruw will keep a-chugging to the plate, another all-or-nothing swinger on this all-or-nothing team.

Last night, he brought nothing.

Anduw took a called strike three, right down the pipe, and strode to the dugout wearing his hum-a-happy-tune smile. That's OK. I don't mind the smile. I'm just wondering if Ronnier Mustellier in Scranton has a once-around-the-league in him, and if so, could we bring somebody off the bench who can bat more than .205?

When down by a run, this team needs a reason to steal second.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Clay Rapada Poem

I didn't think today
Could be worse than yesterday.
And then Rapada -- Clay
Tried to turn his doubleplay.

I thought there was no way
That we would lose today.
And then Rapada -- Clay,
Tried to turn his doubleplay.

Who cares whate'er I say?
I should simply go away.
Never watch Rapada -- Clay,
Try to turn his doubleplay.

The Yankees' Lead Is Meaningless



There is a lot of euphoria passing about these days.

1.  The supreme court decision.

2.  The quality of certain substances.

3.  The Yankee's AL East lead.

The truth is, we are no better positioned than last year for the post season.  Sure, we may win 96 games, but what will happen in round one of the playoffs?

We can't hit home runs, willy nilly, against top pitchers in the playoffs.  We have to manufacture runs, play great defense, run the bases wisely, and pitch great.

We may yet pull this off but the formula, so far, does not project well.

So have another drink, sit down and be real.

Mustang had it right: We are facing the Curse of Hope Week

Last year, during Hope Week, the Yankiverse was stunned to hear the news of Hideki Irabu's suicide.

This year, we lose Andy Pettitte and CC Sabathia in one day.

As Goldfinger told James Bond, "Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, and three times is a frickin' Yankee curse."

I'm calling it a three-way. It's a curse. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying to ditch Hope Week. It's one of the best things we do. But for godsake, we should wear protective armor. Rest the vets. We've still got three days left. A couple more injuries, and we'll be seeking comfort from the homeless people we visit.

Open Letter to Brian Cashman: Here's a pitcher who can solve all your problems

Dear Madam or Sir,

Sorry to hear about your losses. But I have the solution!

Meet Allan Burnett. He pitches for the lowly Pittsburgh Pirates. He is 8-2, and his ERA is 3.24. (Keep in mind that in his third outing of the year, he surrendered 12 earned runs in 2 innings. Some Oxford-educated mathematicians could probably figure out what his ERA would be if that game were eliminated; I'll simply state that if it were scrapped, RA Dickey wouldn't be a shoe-in to start the All-Star Game.)

Over his last 9 starts, Allan has given up only 14 runs. Jeepers. The guy must be pitching on bath salts!

By the way, here's a tidbit from the irony heap: We’re paying him $11.5 million this season, and $8.5 million next year. Last winter, we traded Allan for a bucket of fried chicken, days after we dealt Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi for a damaged plate of cole slaw. We did this for a worthy cause: So the Steinbrothers can save money. They'll "save" $5 million this year and $8 million next year. That is, unless you have to sign some expensive pitcher at the trade deadline. Good luck on that.

I should note that with the money we "saved" by trading Allan, we signed Raul Ibanez for $1.5 million. (We could have had Johnny Damon for less, but that's another story.) By my guess, that leaves $3.5 million "saved" by getting rid of Allan.

Come to think of it, we also "saved" money when we didn't sign Jorge Soler, the young Cuban outfielder. In fact, we've been "saving" gobs of money by not signing international free agents, or Roy Oswalt, or much of anybody - for that matter. (We did sign Jack Cust and Russell Branyan, but that's another story.) By letting teams we don't have to worry about - like Texas - sign them, we reduce the overhead and pass along big savings to everybody!

Now, don't take this the wrong way. You've done your job. We are leading the AL East. And there are a million different scenarios of where we would be if you hadn't traded Allan for a lap dance and a pack of Camels. But if you empty the farm system for Matt Garza or Zach Greinke or Marvin Gardens - anybody - and take on their Zsa Zsa Gabor-like salary needs - I just want it remembered that you had Allan all along - like Dorothy had the means to get back to Kansas - but you scrapped him because the Yankees - the wealthiest team in sports - wanted to be cheap. The billionaires were pretending to be millionaires, so we would feel sorry for them.

Do whatever you want. But I just want the Steinboys to remember what they did: We had everything we needed. We pissed it away. We wanted to "save" money.

Now... will we?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Is HOPE Week Cursed?



...And we won't even mention what happened during HOPE Week last year.

Word to the (Dewayne) Wise: You are in danger of breaking the Yankee Code of Conduct

There are certain things that players must never do in order to uphold and maintain the clear moral superiority that comes with playing for the fabled New York Yankees.

1. Grow facial hair.
2. Take steroids.
3. Mass murder.
4. Wife-swapping. (Banned since 1967)
5. Operate dog-fighting rings.
6. Lie.

Last night, outfielder Dewayne Wise clearly broke one of those rules. He pretended to catch a foul ball, even though replays showed that the ball dropped out of his glove. An honest man would have admitted that he didn't catch the ball. Wise showed his willingness to practice the devil's form of deceit. In doing so, he placed his thirst for victory over the human quest for integrity... and embarrassed Yankee fans everywhere.

As a result of this, Dewayne Wise is hereby placed on IT IS HIGH YANKEE CODE OF CONDUCT SECRET PROBATION.

Over the next 30 days, we at IIHIIFIIc will watch this man like a hawk. Make no mistake. There is no wriggle room here. If he breaks any of the other Top 5 rules - beards, shredded puppies, etc. - he must leave the team immediately. There will be no judicial appeal, no second chance. This is his warning.

There is no room for cheating on the Yankees. And that goes for pencil mustaches, too.

Again, I jujued the entire first three innings to foster a 4-0 lead

Longtime readers know that this is not one of those obnoxious, self-glorifying blogs that is all about me, me, me. It's about John. It's about Suzyn. It's about the Yankee Code. But during Hope Week, the period each season when the Bombers claim moral superiority over other teams - and thus win gain extra respect from the juju gods - we all must be especially attentive to whatever we are personally doing during Yankee broadcasts. We need to help our heroes win ballgames.

Monday night I missed the first three innings of the win over Cleveland because I was doing something. I'm not going to say what I was doing. Frankly, it's nobody's business. This isn't Gawker. This isn't the Discovery Channel. Nobody needs to hear about my personal antics. But let me be clear: Nobody my age should do what I was doing for three long innings every single goddamm night. You'll blow a cork.

In another week, I would drop the move. But during Hope Week, our team deserves more. So Monday night, when I returned to the game and found that we were leading by 6-0, I resolved to spend the first three innings of Tuesday night doing the same thing, regardless of the physical and emotion consequences. And I gotta tell you: It's not easy doing it for three innings. But I did. And when I was finished last night, the Yankees were leading 4-0. Not quite the same as Monday: I sort of ran out of gas. But I did it. For three long innings. I'm telling you, at my age, some things are hard to do for three innings. If I were 22 again, hell, I could go nine. I could play a doubleheader. But for now, three innings is pushing the limit.

But I will do it again tonight. Why? Because I'm a Yankee fan. And it's Hope Week. And it's fun, at least for a while.

Three innings. The things I do to win a pennant.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Watch Spider-Man Fly Out Of CC's Butt



Scoop: Bleeding Cool

Letters to the Editor: The next Louisiana Lightning?

Daily Town Talk (Alexandria, Louisiana)
June 21, 2012 Thursday

Dear Editor,

We have a young man from DeRidder who is playing his heart out to make the big league as a starting pitcher. His name is Josh P. Rainwater, and he is No. 25 with the Kansas City Royals' farm club, the T-Bones. We all hope and pray he will excel this season and make his dream come true.

He has worked hard all his life to fulfill his dream of being a big-league pitcher. Baseball is and has been his goal in life.

Josh is not one to toot his own horn; he speaks loudest and with command from the pitcher's mound. Some positive coverage surely would be helpful.

I hope that Josh gets his chance to fulfill his dream this season with the parent team, the Royals.

Josh Rainwater is, in my opinion, our second "Louisiana Lightning," following the lead of Ron Guidry, former pitcher with the New York Yankees.

Jack L. Daniels
DeRidder

So Did I Miss Anything?


The South Mexican dirt field League is on break for its all star game, so I hopped a bus north and hope to arrive in the upstate NY area a few days prior to July 4th weekend.

With any luck, the NYY Scranton turnpike babies will be in town and we can get a preview of the Yankee's near term future at Syracuse's famous astro field.

Our club in Mexico is 2-22 so far, but two kids made the all star team.  Ruben Sierra and his 16 year old roomie, Orlando Vegas.  Ruben is playing like the old days in KC and , last night, shared a quart of local tequila with me.  He tells me that Brett is done for the year.  He also says Pineda will miss next year as well as this one.

So I hear the Yankees are doing great, even though the team is league last in batting with RISP.

I can tell you that I managed to participate in the international JU-JU intervention, which led to the famed winning streak.

It kind of shook me out of my doldrums, and I came to terms with my early season failures at negative JU-JU.  Some of you may recall, that almost everyone of several dire predictions came true.

Since then, and whilst south of the border, I have been so hung over and dis-connected from the Yankees, that I think my Ju-Ju skills are experiencing a re- awakening.  On their own.

Case in point:

I didn't watch an inning of the last Mets/Yankees game when RJ Dickey pitched, and I didn't watch an inning last night in the 7-1 win vs Cleveland.

Guess what I won't be doing tonight, either?

Time will tell if my powers are fully returned.  It's like coming back from Tommy John surgery.

One game at a time.


Rivalometer

Yanks give kids hope! 
Sox fans boo Chief!

Media Advisory: World Famous Met Chicken to arrive in Watkins Glen this afteroon

Note to Media: World famous Met mascot chicken, Little Jerry Seinfeld, is expected to arrive today at the Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen between noon and 2 p.m.

Little Jerry will pose for photographs and address the media briefly before meeting with Farm Sancutary officials to discuss protocols for his rehab.

Media are urged to arrive early for security scan and proper credentials.

Hope Week is the perfect time to perfect your Juju

This is not a personal blog. I don't post videos of myself. I don't give great details of my private life. It's nobody's business if I happen to enjoy smoking bath salts. (It's the taste, not the high.) So without delving into my personal life, let me confess that I missed the first three innings last night. I was doing something else. I don't need to discuss it. You don't have to know. I didn't even catch The Master's words on the radio. I was totally unsafe and unsecure.

When I finally turned on the game, what a pleasant surprise! Yankees ahead, six to nothing. Six- nothing, baybay. Six-Zip.

So tonight, despite the considerable difficulty in doing what I was doing for three long innings, I will do it again. For three innings. Why?

Because it's Hope Week.

Hope Week is when the Yankees give back. They wash homeless people's feet and hitting lessons to kids with incurable diseases. It's a good thing. It raises Yankee consciousness, it puts the game into perspective - (i.e. meaningless compared to war, disease and hunger) - and it gives us leverage with the juju gods.

Now, I'm not saying that all-powerful, judgmental dieties exist. I'm just saying IF they exist, they gotta be impressed with Hope Week. Yesterday, did the Cleveland Indians visit any hospitals? Hell no. They were doing what I was doing, um, let's not think about that. Cleveland was celebrating No Hope Week. If you were a juju god, and two teams were playing - a Hope Week team vs. an uncaring bunch of yoyos - who would you shave points on behalf of? Hope, dammit.

So during Hope Week, each of us needs to refine our juju. That means learning what works. What were you doing last night during the first three innings? Me? It's nobody's business. But trust me, I'll be doing it again and again and again tonight... for three innings. And I'll tell you something, it feels great at first, but you try to stretch it out over three long innings, and you start to wear out. Three long innings. I was gasping.

But I'm there again tonight. Wish me luck. Six-zip is worth it. Hope Week! Come in Rangoon!

Monday, June 25, 2012

From the Comments

Throwing at Youk's head will never be the same with a White Sox helmet on him. But it won't be bad, just different.--John M

Letter to the Editor: I believe that Yankees should be punished on the field"

The Boston Herald
June 22, 2012

Dear Editor,

As an avid Red Sox fan, I believe that Yankees should be punished on the field, but not in inconsequential trials that take up America's time and money ('Jury: Clemens not guilty,' June 19).

- Katherine Lazarski,
Bristol, Conn.

Why Mets juju doesn't work

The Mets’ good-luck clubhouse chicken was sent down to the farm yesterday after the Amazin’s lost to the Yanks Saturday — but the move didn’t help last night.
The brassy bird — dubbed “Little Jerry Seinfeld” — was handed over at Citi Field yesterday to a rep from an upstate animal sanctuary by zany Mets reliever Tim Byrdak, who bought the fowl as a prank Saturday.
“Little Jerry found himself a new home,” the left-hander said before the bird was given to the Farm Sanctuary of Watkins Glen. “He avoids the fryer and the oven and everything else you can cook a chicken with.”

Last night, John said, "Dig this."

He was talking about the American League's dominance in interleague play. He was preparing to unveil a statistic.

I swear I heard it.

He said, "Dig this...!"

He did. No lie.



I, El Duque, hereby testify and swear that the above statements are true and have not been altered in any way, shape or form to convey a different meaning. I am telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

Signed,

El Duque

Should the Yankees, in the ultimate attempt at torturing Redsock fans, go after Youkilis?

OK, I admit it: At first glance, the notion seems ridiculous: What do we need with Kevin Youkilis? Don't we already have enough slow-footed, overpriced, DH-oriented former sluggers? Yeesh. We have Jack Cust and Russell Branyan sitting on the Montezuma Exit of the NYS Thruway, begging the driver to slow down in the cell phone zone so they can check their messages. Plus, there's no guarantee the White Sox would ever trade us Youkilis. Yep. Whole idea is crazy absurd. Why even think about it?

Well, Jasper, I'll tell you why.

Because we now can!

My friends, we have just been handed the keys to the secret Redsock clubhouse on Cape Cod. Of course, we can stay away and respect their property. Yep. We can be fine, upstanding citizens of the AL East, worthy rivals and pillars of the MLB community.

To anybody who wants that, I say, "Leave now, you chubby Rotarian/Shriner-bot, get out, and don't come back!" This is the Redsock Nation here. In a heartbeat, they'd sign Marinano and have him cross-dressing on behalf of Little Debby snackcakes. I say, we go to the clubhouse, empty the liquor cabinet, write things on the wall with our feces, take pictures and torch it. This isn't Toronto, baby. In the name of Wade Boggs, let's do damage!

They scrapped Youkilis. The Fenway poochies are still wiping tears. The Gammonites, so heavy-hearted with literary remorse, cannot lift their pens. What are we waiting for? This is our shot at bull-goose revenge, the kind JR Ewing perfected o "Dallas," full-scale Ernest Blofeld/Loki stuff. And it's easy: We wait for the White Sox to stumble - maybe this year, maybe next - and swoop in. Once the wallet starts to pinch, we offer to play half the $8 million per - and kaboom - we just bought ourselves a Fenway revenge bomb. This is the equivalent of them planting a David Ortiz jersey in the Yankee Stadium concrete -- WHICH THEY TRIED TO DO. This is why Roger Clemens remains the most hated man in Boston. This is why they still shake their heads at the name "Johnny Damon."

We have the chance for some really top level evil. Seriously, what's more fun - going out in the first round of the playoffs, or messing with the Redsock Nation?

Eric Chavez has one more season left, if we're lucky. Anduw Jones is hitting - what - .205? We need a hitter off the bench. We somebody who hates Boston more than he hates life itself.

I hereby nominate Kevin Youkilis for 2013 IT IS HIGH/OSCAR MAYER LUNCHABLES May Yankee Employee of the Month. I will personally keep the parking space swept out in advance of his arrival.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Meh's taunt lives on

Bad recipe: HR-hitting team meets hot knuckleballer

Nobody becomes baseball's hot pitcher without humiliating the Yankees on national TV. For starters, half the people in America immediately fall in love with the guy, for beating the Yankees. Plus, you have the hype factor, the FOX or ESPN machines that gin up rivalries, story lines, etc., for the sake of ratings.

I remember Mark Fydrich crushing the Reggie-Thurman team. Felix Hernandez did it to our recent orders. Justin Verlander. Yu Darvish. It's a rite of passage. (Dice K never pulled it off, which was the first crack in his hype dyke.)

Tonight brings R.A. Dickey's claim to greatness. The knuckler vs the homer-happy team.

Steel yourselves for the over-the-top hype, for immediate drama over no-hitter potential, and a CC meltdown that will make the entire night a Mets party.

Good night to see Prometheus.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Yankeetorial: Are the Met fans using dark juju?


First off, let’s be straight:

Defeat is chickenhood.

If a Met calls you “chicken,” and then beats you… well Clucky, you have no excuse for your feathers being ruffled.

Last night, we lost our third in a row. To the Mehs. The lowly, otherworldly, fly-under-our-boot-heel Mehs. We will certainly lose Sunday, the lone question being whether R.A. Dickey will throw a no-hitter. Thus, unless we win today, we will follow our celebrated 10-game winning streak with five consecutive losses. Yeesh. We might keep losing until the International Juju Intervention has been completely nullified.

Folks, somebody out there is using hard juju on us.

They have gone Aleister Crowley on us.

Are Met fans dabbling in the black arts?

I have a theory. About a month ago, the Yankees were horrible. Ruth Bader Ginsburg had a better chance of plating a man. Then we unleashed the International Juju Intervention, putting a rift into the universal juju-space continuum. We thought it would only affect the Yankees. What if we were wrong?

One moment, Facebook stock was worth $40 a share. The next, it was $29. A couple billion dollars abruptly vanished – to where – to R.A. Dickey?

Suddenly, Kim Kardashian and Kanye West were dating, and homeless people were eating each other’s faces, Brett Gardner could not heal, and R.A. Dickey is Sandy Koufax at 80 mph.

Ever since the Juju Intervention, the world has been on bath salts – yes, BATH SALTS. WTF is going on? Bath salts? I’m no quantum physicist, but I’ve seen enough Twilight Zone episodes to know what’s happening: You go screwing around with the Large Hadron Supercollider, poking your little ray shooters into the wrong particle, and the next thing you know, we're in a different universe, Mariano is hurt, Phil Hughes is pitching well, and the whole world is crazy over the Bay City Rollers. (Actually, the whole world isn’t crazy about the Bay City Rollers; I was reaching for the strangest image I could think of.)

Last night, we were chickens. The Redsocks are closing on us.

Today, we need a break. Have we used our quota?

Friday, June 22, 2012

Rivalometer


PAPI: Boston's a "shithole!" 

"Chickens?"

“I can’t wait to face those chickens,” Mets closer Frank Francisco told The Post when asked about playing the Yankees in this weekend’s Subway Series at Citi Field. “I want to strike out the side against them. I’ve done it before.”

World, Yankees, prepare for no-hitter by R.A. Dickey

Yeesh. Coverage of the Subway Series’ upcoming marquee matchup – CC vs RA - is like watching a reality TV show from Death Row. Right now, if R.A. Dickey only throws a shutout, he’ll be a failure.

Today’s NYT remembers the Hoyt Wilhelm no-hitter – last pitcher (a knuckleballer) to throw one against us (if you discount the team of Astros a few years back, which disgraced us.) And let’s face it: Everybody knows the team that wins via HRs will struggle against the knuckler. (Fortunately, we have the game’s pre-eminent slap hitter, Alex Rodriguez. Maybe he can dribble one into LF.)

I still remember Roger Maris’ last non-astericked chance to beat Babe Ruth's HR record in 1961, after the lords of the game decided to poke a stick in Roger’s eyes. They announced that he had 154 games to beat Ruth, and nothing more. In Game 154, we were playing the Orioles in Baltimore. Roger needed to hit one to tie Ruth. He slammed a foul ball homer, and he flew out deep to right – you heard the shiver in Mel Allen’s voice when it left the bat, but the damn thing fell at the track. And in the final inning, Roger's last at bat, the Orioles did something cruel: They brought in Hoyt Wilhelm. They brought in a knuckleballer.

I remember my dad laughing (He hated the Yankees; read mybook, and you’ll know this). “Wilhelm never gives up home runs,” he said. “Never.” I can’t deliver the numbers, which the announcers rattled off, but they were scary: Something like one HR in the last 500,000 at bats. In other words, the Babe Ruth merch tent was safe. Maris bounced to the second baseman. I’ve dreaded knuckleballers ever since. (Not even Mantle's HR off Barney Schultz salved my fears. They are just bad juju. Period.)

So now, we sit on death watch, waiting for our jolt of electricity. After Jeet and Slappy Arod, maybe Jason Nix is our best bet to break it up. Or maybe CC can toss his own shutout. Either way, the doom and gloom of pre-juju May has returned. The Mets look like the favorites. Once again, they seem to own the zeitgeist of NYC. Can anybody get a hit? Will we ever win again? Yeesh.

Sorry if this sounds cynical, but the Scranton Yankees want to stage one of those fake fan polls

What a joke. Years ago, they did it in Syracuse: The Syracuse Chiefs said they were changing the name of the team - politically correct issues with Native Americans - and they wanted public input. Yeah, right. The newspaper held a poll. The fans voted. Then the Chiefs announced their new name: the SkyChiefs. It wasn't even on the ballot. Fan input, my ass. (BTW, they're now the Chiefs again. Amazingly, SkyChiefs didn't catch on.)

So The future Scranton-Wilkes Barre Red Barons now want the good people of SWB to play act in the illusion of democracy and choose a new name for the future Scranton-Wilkes Barre Red Barons. Yeah, right. Fans will get to approve the team being named the Red Barons, which is like the Rooskies approving Putin. So they will be the Red Barons. Why? Don't ask. It's just baseball, which admires change the way Donald Trump admires trailer parks.

Listen: Our stupid Employee of the Month polls have as much integrity as this crapola, and we do the whole thing for mock drama. In the end, they will be the Scranton- Wilkes Barre Red Barons, endorsed by "the people." The city will rejoice in this affirmation of its past. The torch shall be carried. (Look, don't get me wrong. I got nothing personal against Scranton. And I'm not talking down to them: For God's sake,  I live in Syracuse.) This is how it's done in America today: Conduct a poll. Tell everybody what they think. Nobody can argue. And it sure looks open.

BTW, since they won't count anywhere, here are my suggested team names, based on what I've seen while passing through the town:

The SWB Amish Breakfasts Specials
The SWB Mining Disasters
The Scranton-Wilkes Barried Alive
The SWB Turnpike Traffic Cones

The SWB Hydrofrackers
The SWB Just Six Miles to Clark Summits

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Rivalometer


REMDAWG: "I don't find it toxic at all!" 
YANKEE HISTORIAN: "Where's the justice?"

Amazing characteristics of newly discovered Higgs Boston particle


1. Always intends to reveal itself next year.

2. Ability to suddenly collapse into nothingness.

3. Explodes with negative ions near Valentine particle.

4. Amazingly, seems to like Ben Affleck movies.

5. Produces bizarre whining sound, called “Shaughnessy Effect.”

6. May induce cryonic freezing of former players' heads.

7. In alternative universe, has already traded Kevin Youkilis.

8. Found only by super-colliders with “toxic” clubhouses.

Gardner vows to return before 2017

In the meantime, he needs to exercise that touchy elbow.

To help him heal, we offer a few tried and true workout manuevers.

The 20-ounce curl

The vertical arm extension

The two-arm horizontal thrust

The groundhog lift


Mudville nine stepping to the plate today?

Pictured (front row L-R): Alvaro Espinosa, Mel Hall, Matt Nokes, Wayne Tolleson, Mike Blowers.
(Second row): Brian Dorsett, Jim Walewander, Kevin Maas, Jesse Barfield.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

An IT IS HIGH WHITE PAPER: 29 years later, MLB finally seeks to halt out-of-control pine tar abuse

In 1983, the lords of baseball had a chance to staunch the growing poison known as pine tar and its ruinous impact upon the national pastime.

They were literally handed rock-solid evidence of pine tar abuse.

They ran like the shrieking, cowardly, fairyland piglets that they are, the dirty stinking clowns.

They could have buckled down and upheld the negation of George Brett’s infamous and blatantly illegal home run, rightfully awarding a crucial game to the Yankees, instead of cowtowing to the cheater-criminal Kansas City Royals. Their refusal to support the rule of law, in the face of incontrovertable evidence from solicitor Billy Martin, remains today a dark, sticky smear upon the integrity of the game.

Dammit, they caught Brett black-handed, his fingers stuck to the cookiejar, and their own umps called him out, OUT! And what happened next? They backtracked, overturning the call, folding like a cheap sheet of typing paper, breaking like wind at a Shriners' convention.

For shame, for shame. . . for shame!

Well, as Goodtimes Lackey used to say in the Fenway clubhouse, "Boys, the fried chicken has come home to roost."

Last night, Tampa Bay’s Joel Peralta was booted from a game after Washington Nationals manager Davey Johnson protested the blatant smear of pine tar that disgraced the pitcher’s mitt. Let’s see if it stands. It’s taken the umps 29 years to work up the gumption to make another pine tar call and do what’s right — take the stainy pitch out of the game.

Bravo, Washington! Bravo, umps! A lot gets written about performance enhancing drugs, but the ugliest scandal for the last 30 years has been how Yankee rivals have coated the game in black, gloopy globs.

Twenty nine years. . . but better late than never.

WE HEREBY CALL UPON THE LEADERS OF MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL TO RETROACTIVELY OVERTURN THE OVERTURN....

1. Restoring the 1983 Yankee victory,
2. Eliminating George Brett’s home run from the fossil record,
3. Fining him for his violent outburst,
4. And reconsidering the heinous villain’s place in history.

The gristmills of the gods grind slowly... but infinitely Yankeesque. Our indignation and wrath will forever stick to Mr. George Brett like – well – not glue, but something else... something gummy. Something black. What is it? Anybody want to guess? Here's a clue: It aint licorice.

Hapless Yanks blow another; Did we shoot the juju moon too soon in June?

Thank you, Mustang, thank you soooo much, for boasting that your Rivalometer Index caused the now-long forgotten Yankee 10-game winning streak. As soon as you jumped onto the bandwagon – no, as soon as you climbed onto the bandwagon, dropped trough and mooned the juju gods — we started losing. Way to go, Al. . . that’s right, "Al," as in "Al Batross."


OK, very well, no problem. It was going to end eventually. We have now experienced the limits of the juju surge. We now know what one International Juju Intervention can do — 20-4 — but then. . . WTF? Well, here’s TFW: You wake up shivering cold and naked in the gutter, covered in Purina Dog Chow and unable to remember anything except the words "Coronet Blue," (a ‘70s joke that most of you won’t get.) You don’t know what happened. You don’t know what didn’t happen. You were playing unconscious. Now, you’re conscious, in fact, keenly aware that each pitch is spinning really fast and – like, WOW, man — you’re grokking that everybody in the stands, even the kids, will someday be dead. So you swing like Billy Crystal. And it’s all because of Mustang. . . and that Rivalometer of his better not show the blue arrow pointed up. Ask not to whom the Blue Arrow points. It points to thee.

We have now dropped two out of three — at home, in our backyard, in front of our wives and children, in broad daylight, on TV, to a team most remembered for the surreal size of Dale Murphy’s facial mole, which needed a zip code. We are staggering, wandering, collapsing — waiting to be no-hitted by R.A. Dickey — hoping to run out the clock on the season — but it’s June.

Solstice. Longest day of the year. Not made any shorter by Philip Hughes.

Did we shoot our juju moon too soon?

From 2008: The Roger Clemens songbook, "Mitchell, the Feds and Congress"

From 2008, the height of the testimony before Congress
(Sung to the tune of "Lawyers, Guns and Money" by Warren Zevon)

Dropped my pants down to my ankles,
McNamee gave me a shot;
How was I to know
It wasn't B-12 that I got?

I put my trust in my trainer
To help me deal with pain;
Tell Mitchell, the Feds and Congress
I thought it was lidocaine.

I'm an all-time great right-hander,
No corners did I cut;
But Congress wants to see pictures
Of an abscess on my butt
... an abscess on my butt
... yeah, an abscess on my butt

Now I'm hiding out in Houston,
Recorder hooked up to my phone.
Tell Mitchell, the Feds and Congress
Leave me the hell alone!

The Life of Brien

BrienTaylor, Chosen One,
Genius of the radar gun.
Lefty pitcher, future sweet.
Hundred mile-per-hour heat.
Brien Taylor, life is square.
Gonna be a millionaire.
.
Brien Taylor, seize the day!
Rising up to Double A.
Greatest prospect in the game
Future member, Hall of Fame.
Brien Taylor, has it all.
And bets it in a barroom brawl.
.
Brien Taylor, throws a punch,
Feels some pain and hears a crunch,
Feels a popping in his arm,
Staggers home and claims no harm.
Brien Taylor, after dawn,
Finds his magic shoulder gone.

.
Brien Taylor, down the drain,
Busted selling crack cocaine.
King of slammer, not of park.
Sold the wrong stuff to a narc.
Brien Taylor, never know,
Prospects come and prospects go.
.

Brien Taylor, life unfurled,
Somewhere in another world...
He's our savior, Yankee great!
Time for him is not so late.
Fate can sound a shrill alarm
Balanced
on one human arm.
Brien Taylor, lost in jail.

Should have been a fairy tale.

John's Takeaway Points from Last Night's Loss, driven by Jeep

1.   It had to end someday. Everybody knew it. No streak lasts forever. Every team loses eventually. It was always going to happen. That’s baseball. You can't win them all.

2.   The Yankees are in position to take the series against Atlanta. That’s how you win pennants: By winning series. If you take, say, two out of three games from every team, you’ll win 110 games! So the Yankees are still on course to win the series – and that's crucial. Of course, you can't win every series. Nobody wins every series. Eventually, you'll lose one. It will happen.

3.   It’s all about pitching. Wednesday, we have Phil Hughes. It will be completely different from tonight, with Hiroki Kuroda. If Hughes can keep pitching well, we have a good chance.

4.   The Yankees have no kick coming about this loss. No kick at all! They had a lot of runners on base, and they couldn’t get them in. Let’s hope they’re not reverting back to that situation of early May, when nobody could hit with runners in scoring position.

5.   It was great to see David Robertson out there throwing hard. He really adds to this Yankee team.

6.   Good to have Nick Swisher back in the lineup. He doesn’t seem to have missed a step. Went two for three and hit a long fly that looked like it was gone. From the booth, both Suzyn and John thought it was out, a game-tier, but it died at the track.

7.   Hopefully, Brett Gardner is getting better. Suzyn will have all the details, plus the thoughts of manager Joe Girardi, on the Clubhouse Show.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012