Friday, December 5, 2014

With Chase Headley nearly gone, the Evil Empire turns its lonely eyes to A-Rod

The ever-tweeting Twitterverse says Chase Headley has been handed a 4-year deal worth $65 million by some team not named the Yankees.

On behalf of the blogosphere, or the Yankiverse, or the screaming NY hordes scrambling for a better view on the bow of this S.S. Titanic, I say: "Good luck to Mr. Headley and whatever team that gets him."

We had Headley for two months, long enough to see:

1) What it's like to have an actual third-baseman playing third.

2) That an actual third-baseman playing third still left us in third.

It's not that Headley didn't help. He played well, in a Scott Brosius sense. Trouble is, he didn't make a difference. In the end, he was just another boring vet with a ceiling made of concrete.

Whenever a .240 hitter is hitting .320, everybody knows what's coming: The 1-for-35 slump. We see this again and again. Two years ago, Travis Hafner and Vernon Wells were dynamos through May, cadavers by August. Over two months, Headley played well for the Yankees, but over a season - and certainly over four - everybody knows what's coming - .220 and declining power. (Which is why we saw no ticker tape parade when the Evils recently re-signed Chris Young.)

This year, the Yankees might have two position players without concrete ceilings. I say "might" because one could get dropped and the other traded. They are 3B Alex Rodriguez and 2B Rob Refsnyder. I'm not saying the skies are their limits - only that we don't know.

Who knows what A-Rod will do? For a decade, he was the greatest athlete of his generation. Now, we don't know how much of his glories came from sweat or from serums. But Captain America was created in a lab, and I didn't see moviegoers rooting for the Red Skull. So the Yankees have A-Rod to play third... and until he cannot do it, I say, send him out and let's see...

The other is Refsnyder, who might open in Scranton. But the Ref looks like a pure hitter - rather than a homer-happy whiff machine, like several in the lineup. Who knows what he might do?

At least we have hope. Last April, Yangervis Solarte became the most interesting Yankee on the team. When Mark Teixeira came up, I'd go make a sandwich. When Solarte stepped in, I'd pace circles around the room. By June, the magic was gone, and so was Solarte. Maybe the same will happen with A-Rod and the Ref. But at least - for now - we have hope.

For $65 million, some team knows exactly what it's going to get from Chase Headley. Good for them. Because we've seen it up close, and it was not enough to make a difference.


Alphonso said...

"…at least for now, we have hope?"

For what exactly?

To win 60+ games?

To sneak into the one game play-in at a neutral site?

Hope for A-Rod to hit 40 HRs, drive in 106 and bat .329?

Hope for a golden glove from our third baseman?

Hope for the oldest, slowest professional team in any sport?

Hope for Cashman to get a venereal disease from a Tennessee bar maid?

Hope that watching the Yankees will be more entertaining than watching a garbage truck do its rounds on west 68th street?

Hope that we shall all remain coherent for another wasted year in baseball?

I feel good about this. You are right. There is still hope.

el duque said...

I have hope that we will have a reason to be hopeful.

Tom said...

I have hope that I will be reincarnated as one of Chase Headley's grandchilden, while that $65 mill still has some heft. That is some amazing money for a mediocre talent. He would be stupid not to snatch it off the table, and the Yankees would be remiss not to say thank you to the team that signs him.

Leinstery said...

Sometimes I like to watch A-Rod lowlights while listening to Bonnie Tyler's version of "Simply the Best".