Thursday, June 5, 2014

I'm escaping to Brazil... I mean, Scranton

Lately, every post I've written - like every Yankee loss - has looked the same: I wail about a mediocre team and a dire future. I am The Gipper, screaming, "MR. STEINBRENNER, TEAR DOWN THIS WALL!" It does no good. We are in a death spiral.

I find myself checking box scores - minor league box scores. I hope to find something. I think: Maybe someday - after all the Beltrans and A-Rods are gone - a child could lead us. (Of course, we'll have McCann for five, and I will probably be dead before Ellsbury leaves.) I'm done with railing about Alfonso Soriano. I'm that guy in Brazil, zoning out with the headphones. This morning, I visited Scranton.

Not much there, eh? Not since 22-year-old OF Ramon Flores went on the DL with a tweaked gonad.  (He was starting to hit.) But look, look, LOOK: Jose Pirela is only 24 - (I say "only 24" because he's a Yankee; on other teams, he would be "already 24.") - and, jeepers, he's spanking the league. Jose stole his sixth base last night, also made an error. His problem? He toiled three years at Trenton (even though in his second season, he hit .293. Now, how does a 2B hit .293 for a season - but NOT get promoted?) One of these days, the Mediocre Empire will cut bait on Brian Roberts. Will they give this guy a chance? Have they learned anything from Yangervis Solarte?

Then there is Kyle Roller, 26, who hit his 13th home run of the season last night. (Nine at Trenton, where he had been hitting .385.) Roller spent two years at Tampa, due to an injury. That's why he's so old. The guy is built like Jon Favreau, and OK, he may never see the light of Yankee Stadium. But some guys come out of nowhere, and a smart organization turns them into positives - maybe a trade chip, maybe a utility specialist. (Remember Jim Leyritz, who was 26 and viewed as fodder.) Could we get something out of Roller. Or is he just another Brandon Laird?

Neither of these guys may ever make it. But I'd rather think about them than Alfonso Soriano.

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