Friday, January 22, 2016
Posted by el duque at 6:02 AM
Then I was going to rail about a recent spate of articles mouthing YES/Gammonite propaganda, suggesting that the Yankees "can have it all" - that is: maintaining their status as contenders, while rebuilding. This narrative - marveling that the Yankees hadn't gone an off-season since 1990 without signing a major free agent, yet look, they could contend! - conveniently ignores the expanded Wild Card playoff system. These days, any team playing .500 ball in late June is a contender. Last year, Texas and Toronto were huge disappointments until loading up at the trade deadline, while Detroit cut and ran. Of course, the Yankees can contend! Unless the team bus crashes, everybody stays in the race.
I was going to bloviate hard about that... then this caught my red-ringed eyes.
OK, take your blood pressure medicine. Breathe...
This was confirmed yesterday by Hal Steinbrenner during "Food Stamp"s pilgrimage to the Great Man Summit, aka the owner's meetings. We're actually going to do this.
Insert barf here.
Of course, you should not be surprised. The Yankees would retire Rupert Murdock's home defibrillator if it guaranteed a sellout. (Let's hope Jerry Hall knows how to run it.) And honoring Big Papi is karmic payback, right? After all, Boston played nice with Mariano and Jeter, right? We know how "rivalries" work, right?
Well, I'm not buying it. Throughout his career, David Ortiz has never been a Mariano or a Jeter. He's been a foul, completely disagreeable human being, spun into a smiling Shrek figure by a Boston media machine that desperately wanted a popular, black-Latino star, so it could ignore the Redsocks' dismal history on race relations. When Ortiz was caught juicing - (and when, beyond any quick look at the NFL, was there been a more obvious lab-created humanoid in sports?) - Boston sluffed it off, conveniently forgetting the things its frat boy fans screamed at Roger Clemens and A-Rod, and anybody in a Yankee uniform. When Big Papi said "fuck" on opening day a few years ago, it was just the happy uncle in the attic, bringing mirth to the world. Great hitter, granted. Great player, are you kidding me? A full-time DH for 15 years.
I greatly fear that Boston will rise this season. A recent Fangraphs analysis - if anybody gives a damn - projected them to be baseball's second best team (after the Cubs.) (The Yankees are middle of the pack, which means - you guessed it - Wild Card race!) They come to NYC in late September, their last road trip of the season. If they have clinched the AL East, our transition to a small market, meaninglessness franchise - our Padres-ization - will be complete. We'll be groveling midgets, shrinking before our conquerors and honoring Big Papi at the same time. If that happens, I only hope we make it a embarrassment trifecta. Let's trade for Howie Kendrick!