Friday, November 30, 2012

The best Fat Jete jokes aren't very funny

The NY Post is congratulating itself for this morning's photos of Fat Jete by announcing that its pictures have "set the Twitterverse alight" with jokes.

It prints three. 

Now, hang with me here: If you were the guy assigned to the story, wouldn't you pick the three funniest Fat Jete jokes? I mean, you're talking about setting the Twitterverse alight. And remember: We're all brothers atop Mt. Murdoch, so you want your best joke forward.


Looks to me like they almost got that magic third joke. 

The first two, OK. 
The third was Colter Bean.

So, with the bar considerably lower than usual...

They say Jete's not only juicing, he's milk-shaking.
Wow! Jete really crushed that ball. He sat on it.

When Jete steps in the bucket, at least he's emptied it of chicken.

You hear about Jete's new girlfriend? Minka Jelly.

When Jete sees a fat pitch, he relates to it.

Nobody throws cheese past Jete anymore. They know he let it go by.

Jete is crowding the plate. Not only that, he's crowding the whole stadium.
That pitch was right in Jete's wheelhouse! I'm sorry, I meant his "warehouse."
 Jete covers a lot of ground at shortstop. And sometimes, he moves around, too.

When a pitcher sends Jete some chin music, he has to specify which chin.

It looks like Girardi wants Jete to sacrifice... lunch, that is.

Home run! And Jete will touch 'em all... at the same time!

It is high, it is far, it is... gone! El Capitan downs another burrito!

Should the Yankees settle for a payroll drop to just $189 million... or should we go lower?

In recent months, our fearless leaders have made their feelings crystal clear: The Yankees must cut expenses.

We cannot continue to spend, spend, spend. By this time next year, the Yankee organization must reduce payroll to at least $189 million. We cannot just go out and sign any more workers. We have to change. We face a fiscal Yankee cliff.

But why sell ourselves so short?

Haven't we always been a special group, with greater goals than others? If they win one game, we should win two! If they win one world series, we should win 27!

Why limit ourselves to $189 million. We say, let's cut more!

We're the Yankees, dammit. We should be able to cut down to $180 million... $170 million... or... ONE MILLION DOLLARS.


Let the Royals be incapable of slashing to the nub. We are the Yankees. We don't need fingers. I say, cut, cut, CUT.  We must look at every worker and ask, is he worth angering Bud Selig? If the answer is no, then... "So long, Mariano!" Let's not settle for $189 million. Let's lose everything. 


Dammit, those Hurricane Sandy victims get all the press. Everybody feels sorry for them. What about the Steinbrothers? Does anybody care?

Today, the central defining brass cog of the Yankiverse, around which all planetary matter spins, is known to physicists of Yankeeology by the name of Austin Romine

OK, I know what you're thinking: Dukie,  did you know you have a tendency to overstate your crapola headlines? Because what's up there looks like drunken Lindsay Lohan dialogue from the "Liz and Dick" chick flick. Are you mixing Adderall and alcohol again? We know of Austin Texas. Who is Austin Romine?

OK, to answer your questions: The headlines are truth, which often needs metaphorical buttressing. No Adderall, but I'm into the fourth Snickers bar.  And here: 

TEN TRUE E-HOLLYWOOD FACTS ABOUT AUSTIN ROMINE (who right now is odds on favorite to be our catcher in 2013:)

1. We drafted him out of a Texas high school in the second round of 2007. (Yes, Austin, Texas!)

2. In 2010, Baseball America rated him our second best prospect, behind Jesus Montero.

3. That year, he caught in the Futures Game.

4. He got stuck behind Jesus and suffered two years at AA Trenton. His hitting flat-lined.

5. When the Yankees ran out of catchers in September 2011, they used Romine, because they had no faith in Jesus' defense.

6. Romine was then said to be MLB-ready behind the plate.

7. He went to spring training last year expecting to challenge for backup catcher.

8. He threw out his back, and his season turned to crap. The Yankees traded for Chris Stewart.

9. Romine played in August and caught recently in the Arizona Instructional League. He didn't hit much, but his defense was said to be solid. He made the all-prospects team.

10. This year, he'll be 24. (Yes, twenty-four. Can you imagine that? Twenty-four!)

Listen: I loved Russell Martin, and I hate the notion of the Murdoch-rich Yankees being outspent by the Carnegies and raping Roethlesburgers of Pittsburgh. But even if he bats cross-handed, Austin Romine can't hit worse than what Martin did through last July. And no matter how you tease Martin's numbers, .211 is still a daily 1-for-5. Almost every other team in baseball would hand the position to Romine and feel good about it. Our concern is his Mattinglyesque back. If it holds up, Austin Romine could be our savior. And it sure would be nice to have someone under 30 in the lineup.

I say this with the deepest, darkest fear that Brian Cashman right now is spinning the chamber of a loaded revolver, cooking up some hideous trade, the likes of which will require us to invoke the name of Michael Pineda. Remember the fundamental rules of MLB: No GM ever trades with the Yankees, unless it's a hose job. Everybody in small market America wants to beat the big bad Yankees in a trade.

There's speculation that Grandyman will go -- and, hey, .225 is also a daily 1-5 -- but please, please, please, oh juju gods of the game, don't let the Branch Rickey of Rappelling trade some kids for another rust-bucket. And frankly, I'd like to see Austin from Texas get a full shot before we do anything. And if the back goes blooey, hey, look on the bright side: We still have Eli Whiteside. From the right side.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

That'll be the day! Can you imagine it? When the Pittsburgh Pirates outbid the Yankees on a player? Hah. Dream on.

They got him for two years.  

That means Cashman is going to make a deal. 

God help us.

Fifty shades of grey: Andy will stay a Yankee, but let us never forget the sad era when we showed him the door

Shout whatever obscenity you wish at the Yankee swish-hitters who two months ago embarrassed God and us - and not in that order. But at least we haven't yet plummeted to the toxic point where nobody wants to play in NYC. Because, folks, we once held that poisoned perch: Never forget the Greg Maddux era.

Proof of our continued status: Andy Pettitte is back for another year, making it a mere blip in the fossil record that he ever left New York. It is for history to note that in late 2003, the esteemed "baseball men" in George Steinbrenner's kitchen cabinet ruled that Andy was done, and he could skip off to Houston and not be missed. Yes, folks, it really happened. This was our stove-piped intelligence, our cherry-picked evidence, our miniature invasion of Iraq.

Andy pitched Houston to the playoffs. He pitched three three years. In fact, during the Yankees worst meltdown in history - the barf known as 2004 - let it be known that Andy was elsewhere. Just maybe we might have won one of those four games against Boston, if Andy had not been so horribly dumped by the brain trust that now self-congratulates his return.

How did we let him go? Well, the answer, my friends, was blowing in the wind. The names Javier Vazquez and Jose Contreras - and maybe Arod, too - resurface from the Magic 8-Ball. Brian Cashman had coveted Vazquez, who represented Cash's annual adolescent Yankee fantasy - the overlooked small pitcher who would bloom in NY. (Remember Jeff Weaver?) Nobody bothered to worry about Vazquez string of 230-inning seasons in Montreal. And, of course, George just had to have Contreras, the Bronze Titan, basically because -- well -- Boston wanted him. So they jettisoned Andy, based on some MRI snapshot and a whisper campaign to the Gammonites that - hey, he'd be happier near home, because the poor guy was done.

Well, if we had kept Andy, it's not hard to imagine Boston still suffering from the Curse of the Bambino. After experiencing Contreras 1.0, would they have ever outbid God and the world for Dice-K? (Of course, once you shuffle the deck in an alternative universe - the butterfly in China starts the earthquake in Ohio - it's all just a parlor game.)

So Andy is home, where he belongs. And maybe 2004-06 had to happen. Maybe he was always destined to kick the tires on Houston, to be closer to his family, only to learn that NYC was his rightful place in the universe. And maybe we had to be reminded - sadly, it seems - that a player who can star in NY is a rarity, and you don't let them go for the biggest bull-goose stud of Montreal.

Let's hope Cash remembers his lesson before pushing the SALARY DUMP button this winter on the wrong trade. In other words... Robbie Cano, doncha go.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Tampa Bay Rays need a centerfielder, and we have just the guy

Today, the Atlanta Braves signed BJ Upton for $75 million, proving that you can have a long and successful career as a prospect.

It leaves a vacancy in the Tampa Bay outfield roughly the size of the hole in Taylor Swift's heart after Jake Gyllenhaal let her know he was dumping her by not attending her 21st birthday. (For shame!)

We have a CF who can do everything Upton did, including striking out 175 times a year. "The Tampa man... oh the Tampy man can."

Seriously. I would love to trade Granderson for equal value, if anybody can figure out what that is. But it won't happen with Tampa. They won't deal with the hated Yankees unless they could send us Michael Pineda. And we already have him.

But what is Cashman cooking? That is the question...

With another rappelling stunt, is Cashman signaling another deathwish deal?

At 45, Brian Cashman is just barely older than the Yankee lineup he puts on the field - at least chronologically. But if tabloid fodder counts, he's aged 10 years since 2010.

So what's with his continued desire to rappel off the top of the Empire State Building of Stamford, Connecticut? He's going to do it again. As best as I can see, it's not for charity - unless coaxing people to shop is now viewed as humanitarianism - so it must be fun. It must rev his engines in a way that - well - resembled cutting a deal.

Let's face it: After you look down for 20 stories, held by a thin tether, you should be able to deal your best hitting prospect to Seattle without hiccupping phlegm into the bean crock. I mean, what's the worst that can happen? Your pitcher tears out his shoulder and turns into a driving version of Foster Brooks? No problem, Freddie Nietzsche. You already stared into the abyss.

I can't help but think it means Cash is telling us that he's ready to make another death-defying deal. As usual with Cash, advance speculation is meaningless. Nobody ever sees his deals coming. He works with Dick Cheney-level secrecy, and the Gammonites - if they do know - never give a peep of what's coming.

So with that in mind - this being pure speculation, based on the speculation that we speculate something is coming - here goes what I speculate. And tell me why I'm wrong.

We will not sign Russell Martin to a four-year deal. He's asking for four, because he'll come down to three. But if anybody gives him four, he'll take it. I can't see anybody giving a .210-hitting catcher four years, but whadda I know? He might get it. I don't think Cash will give it.  I'm not sure he would even go to three.

Curtis Granderson becomes the trading chip that brings us a catcher. Have no idea who that catcher would be. He won't be a star, like Granderson is. He might not even be much of a name. There could be ancillary players involved. But Grandy is a player other teams might covet - he's poised for a bounce-back year - and we would likely lose him anyway in our "Quest for 187" next year.

We then sign Ichiro and scan the scrap heaps for a left-fielder.  I just get the feeling that the fix is in on Ichiro, that at this stage of his career, it's New York or LA, and he'll take a one-year to stick with his buddy, Kuroda. For all the booing last October, the fans still cheered Ichiro. We got him to the post-season. There's no better bet in baseball than that the Yankees will make it to October.

Either this, or else Cash is planning to bite through his chord and plummet 20 stories to be cleaned up with a blotter.  After all, the guy is at least 100 years old.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

10 things school children should know about the late Marvin Miller

1. In 1966, when he formed the MLB Players' union, the average salary was a stinking $19,000.

2. Over the last 20 years, he was  consistently screwed out of being elected to the Hall of Fame by rigged committees of bitter owners and toadie sportswriters.

3. Joe Morgan once said, of Miller's exclusion from the Hall: "They should vote him in and then apologize for making him wait."

4. Before taking over the Players Union, he worked with the Machinists, the UAW and the Steelworkers.

5. In his first bargaining agreement in 1968, he increased the MLB minimum salary from a pitiful $6,000 to $10,000.

6. That was the first minimum salary increase in two decades.

7. He seized on the fact that Charlie Finley had welched on Catfish Hunter's contract, freeing him to sign with the Yankees.

8. He recognized that too many free agents at once would drive down the value of players; thus, he set up a system where only a few would hit free agency each year.

9. At the end, Miller grew fed up with the votes for Cooperstown. He said, "At the age of 91, I can do without farce."

10. He led his union through three strikes and two lockouts. The final record: 5-0.

Yankeetorial: How many backup catchers equal a starter?

Yesterday, we avoided arbitration with Eli Whiteside -- NYC's new Eli -- who we fished off the scrap heap. We signed the guy to a $625,000 contract, a lot of squid for somebody who hits .125 lifetime.  Oh, and he's 33!

That gives us the following catchers:

Austin Romine (the eternal prospect)
Frankie Cervelli (the eternal overlooked)
Chris Stewart (the eternal backup)
Eli Whiteside (the eternal Eli Whiteside.)
Not sure, but we might also have Gus Molina, eternally wondering the New York State Thruway in search of Batavia, the eternal destination.

Meanwhile, we're romancing  Russell Martin, who apparently wants a three-year deal. And that third year might seem an eternity.

OK, I know what you're thinking: Seely, WTF? This is supposed to be a Yankee humor site. Who gives a shit about the fifth catcher in the organization? Have you lost your effing head?

Listen: We mess up catcher, and there's not going to be a lotta laughs next year. So... a couple things:

1) I'm not complaining about signing Eli. Cashman's greatest strength is dumpster diving; it's the bum trades that kill us. As long as he's scoping the trash heap, Cashman can't wreck another season with a disaster deal.

2) Supposedly, our future catcher is named Gary Sanchez, who is two years away - although he could be the next Jesus Montero, whatever that is.

3) Everybody likes Russell Martin, as a profoundly courteous human being, a citizen-player and a fine defensive catcher. But come on: .220 is .220.  Since when do you give a three-year deal to a clump who hits .220?

So what's with these backups? How many do you need? Is the new adage, winning is all about backup catching, backup catching and and more backup catching. And not one hitter in the scrum.  When the batting order hits a slump - and we sure know what that looks like, eh? - wouldn't it be nice to have a hitting catcher off the bench? We're about to cut payroll next year: WTF with all these catchers?

Only conclusion? I dunno. Three come to mind:

1. Cashman is prepping for a deal. Somebody out there likes Romine or Cervelli. By adding Whiteside, they are the new expendables. So Cash is about to bring us another Michael Pineda.

2.  Cash is squeezing Martin in the negotiations. He's saying, "Heck, Russell, we've got Eli Whiteside in the house!" If Martin holds on the three-year demand, maybe we let him go. Put the catcher position up for auditions. (But I doubt this second part, because Girardi - the former catcher - places a premium on the position.)  Maybe Eli is a winter fix and a future fixture at Scranton.

3. It means nothing. Nada. Zip. I just wasted three hours writing this post, and you just wasted two minutes reading it.  It stands as a microcosm of the 2012 season. THIS IS PROBABLY THE TRUTH.

Dammed if I know. But I say this: If we sign Martin - people get ready, for a trade's a comin.'.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Tonight on Yankee Classics: Boomer's No-Hitter

Move aside Manning, New York has a new Eli, and he's playing for the Yankees

Eli Whiteside is in the house.

A-Rod in Mexico: "Alex, who suffered a lackluster postseason, looked barbecue ready in his casual black t-shirt, blue shorts, and black sneakers."

A-Rod is getting serious, sez the Mail.

Hey, does anybody else see the irony of Arod possibly marrying a woman named "Torrie?"

A big fan is hitting the free agent market

We could use this guy.

Also, last time I looked, we had a few empty seats.

Ten reasons Swish could sign with Boston

OK, I know what you're thinking:  No, no, no! Not Nick. He'd NEVER do it. No way he'd do it. No possible way! But Boston is said to be in the bidding, and they'd love to poke us in the gilhoolie. Why would Swish do it?

 1. Attention. ('Nuff said.)

2. Money. (Ditto.)

3. Green Monster. (Extra 5 HR, 10 points batting average)

4. Revenge for being booed. (He apologized for whining, but he didn't mean it.)

5. Chance to grow beard. (Gains four minutes a day by not having to shave.)

6. Clubhouse harmony. (That's a joke. Get it?)

7. Forgiving fans. (I'm on a roll.)

8. No fear of failing in October. (Sensing a trend?)

9. Meet Ben Affleck. (Maybe he'll make a movie about Gramma.)

10. Jubilant homecomings in NYC. (Who needs Curt Schilling?)

News from Northern Yankee Country: The war continues

From personal experience, I figure the wine glass hurt more than the beer can - unless it was full. Tough call. It's a war out there.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Tonight in Yankee Classics: Chad Curtis beats Braves

The ants are getting antsy

Boston starting to fidget.

But hey, there's always 2016.

Next year: Girardi's Geriatrics

For everybody out there who wants us to trade a prospect, consider this very real on-field lineup: (Age next year)

c: Chris Stewart (31)
lb: Mark Teixiera (33)
2b: Robbie Cano (30)
ss: Derek Jeter (39)
3b: Alex Rodriguez (37)
lf: Ichiro Suzuki (39)
cf: Curtis Granderson (32)
rf: Raul Ibanez (41)
dh: Eric Chavez (35)
p: Andy Pettitte (41)
p: Mariano Rivera (43)

Any chance we could sign Bernie Williams? He'll only be 44.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Will Murdoch's grand journalistic tradition eliminate bias at YES?

Check out this classic paragraph from Richard Sandomir in today's Times. It concerns Rupert Murdoch buying YES, and the potential impact it could have on the network's pro-Yankee slant.

Fox will, of course, bring some of its programming to YES. That was one reason to make the deal. It needs a New York outpost, especially as it starts a national sports network that is, for now, called Fox Sports 1. But tinker with the propaganda? Never. 

Wait a minute. I hadn't thought of this: Fox buying the Yankee network, and suddenly forcing it to change its ways and become a completely unbiased news source. Wow. Hold on for a second. I gotta wrap my head around this for a while. I need to put my head in an ice bucket.

OK, I'm better now.

Fox buying YES, and forcing the channel to become unbiased. Hey, mathematically, it could happen. Put two negatives together, and you get a positive. Add Fox's bias to YES's bias, and theoretically, you would create two rapidly spinning particles that could repel each other: It could spin so far in favor of the Yankees that it becomes Alphonso after a loss - the network becomes furious, vengeful, livid - when the Yankees lose.

Think about this, world: If you add Fox bias to YES bias - it's like Arnold Schwarzenegger breeding with Dolly Parton; it's like Mariano's cutter merging with Dickey's knuckler; it's like the Perfect Storm (except we don't have a third component) -- mark my words, you are tampering with a nuclear spinning device.

This is what the Mayans warned us about. This is what NASA found on Mars. This is why Naomi Campbell beats chauffeurs. I am scared. Where is that bucket of ice water?

Today on Yankee Classics: We sweep Atlanta

Friday, November 23, 2012

Tonight on IIH Yankee Classics: Jim Leyritz first great HR

Redsocks snagging Jonny Gomes

Now and then, despite all the pain and suffering in the world, the political polarity that threatens our nation, the rising sea levels and catastrophic storms, you get a good feeling about the future.

That's how I felt yesterday, as I gave thanks for Boston. 

Somehow, when Team John Henry last summer sent the Billion Dollar Odd Lots & Overruns Outlet to LA, I didn't see Jonny Gomes on the horizon. I thought about Josh Hamilton, Zack Greinke and Rafael Soriano filling in the void. They still might. But now, I'm not so sure.

Not to diss Jonny Gomes. Good grief, he could be the next Kelly Stoppach! But they have now made two money splashes this winter: Big Papi and Gomes. Two DHs. How many can you have? It's almost as if George Steinbrenner is running the team from the grave. We just signed Ron Kittle to supplement Claudell Washington!

Gomes is the new Cody Ross.

Meet the new Ross. Same as the old Ross.

Thank you, Redsocks. Without you, 2012 would have been horrible.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Tonight on Yankees Classics: The Boston Beatdown

Today on IT IS HIGH YANKEE CLASSICS, relive a great Yankee victory!

Exit ramp looming, Swish apologizes

Listen: We're going to miss the big lug. Maybe not in October. But the dugout shots, the post-games, the skyward gestures, the good will - it won't be the same. 

Yesterday, Nick Swisher apologized for booing the fans who booed the Yankees in our recent October boo-fest. In what ends with the whiff of a publicist statement, he told Mark Feinsand, of the Daily News Fifth Inning:

"It was a bad time and the end of the season was hard for all of us. If I offended anybody with what I said, I apologize. I didn’t mean it; Yankees fans are the greatest in the world. When you speak from the heart, sometimes it comes out wrong. Sometimes you’re human and that stuff gets to you, but I certainly didn’t want to offend anybody. There’s no better place to play than Yankee Stadium in front of that New York fan base. I love those fans as much today as I have since the day I got to New York. They’re the best in baseball.”

When I think of Swish, this is what I want to remember:

1. Getting a phone call on a Saturday afternoon last spring from Alphonso's wife, telling us to turn the channel because Swisher had just hit a grand slam, bringing the Yankees back from a 9-0 deficit at Fenway.

2. The hot streaks, when every ball hit fell in, and he was always raising his fingers to the sky.

3. The way he lumbered after balls in right field, but caught more than his share.

4. The smile, when things went our way.

The fans targeted Swish after his horrible botch in right field cost us game one. We never recovered. He later said fans were blaming him for Jeter's injury, which is 1) totally unfair and 2) By the quirks of fate, true: If Swish catches that ball, Detroit doesn't score, Jeet doesn't lunge, we're still out there, and who knows? Ahh, but he didn't catch it. And, awwww, he didn't need to apologize, either.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Steeve Doocy, Gretchen Carlson and Brian Kilmeade Would Like To Welcome The Yankees To The Fox News/News of the World/Yardbarker/It Is High Family!

Let the haters hate

Kuroda is coming back, but the elephant in the room still waits on the West Coast

All together now...
Rapata/Epply/Aardsma/Warren/Marshall/scrap heap
IF... Andy returns... Nova recovers... Mariano comes back... Hughes evolves... Joba doesn't get hurt... CC has another year... and we can find one more piece from the recycling bin.... We could have a decent staff. 

(Note: Let's do ourselves a favor and forget Pineda. That seems to be Cashman's policy: Anything the guy ever gives us will be gravy.)

So, what do we have? Intangibles -- of which the biggest remains Cashman: Will he tear apart the roster with a monster deal, as he did last year? Let's hope not. We always give up what we need (youth) in exchange for what we have (age.)

Of course, the 900-pound gorilla is King Felix. The Mariners say they'll never trade him. That means nothing. In recent months, several major sports outlets - including writers at Seattle and Sports Illustrated - have suggested Seattle put him on the market. We're they publishing secret trial balloons? Who knows?  But sometimes, such articles represent a toe in the water.

We would ransack our entire system to bring Felix Hernandez to NYC, where the hype would rival that of Jack Black importing King Kong -- except in this case, the King will have thrown 200-plus innings for five consecutive years. (More than 230 for the last four; he led the league in innings in 2010) The bidding war to get him would be fierce. I hate to ponder the price tag. (But a note to all you 14-year-olders: It won't be Grandy, Aardsema and Rapata.) Whatever we imagine, pain-wise... double it.

Right now, every roster projection is meaningless. But Kuroda coming back is huge. Without him, Cash would almost certainly have to start moving players.  With him, if Felix moves, maybe we don't get held hostage.

San Francisco celebrates World Series victory by enacting police state

Tin soldiers and Nixon's comin',
We're finally on our own,
This summer I hear the drummin',
Can't show my sloppy Joe...
Hello, Hefner, my old friend,
I've come to talk with you again...
We don't need no titilation,
We don't need no clothes control,
No dark sarcasm in the change room,
Hey, nudists! Leave the streets alone!
Mama put my skin in the ground,
I can't wear it anymore...
Come gather ‘round boomers where'er you disrobe,
And see how the waistlines around you have grown…
          For your tush, it is disgustin'

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Rupert Murdoch, Yes, the Poem

CIA chief bangs his ghost,
Arod, blistered in the Post.
Jersey digging out from Sandy.
Doctors checking eyes of Grandy.

Jeter’s ankle in the cast. 
Yankee outlook, picked for last.
Bullpen, starters, all a mess.
Rupert Murdoch, owning YES?

Swisher gone, Cashman cracking, Soon he'll work at cellphone hacking.
Cut the payroll, that’s our goal.
Murdoch calls, let's sell our soul.

Mayans say the end is near.
Mariano's final year.
What's the endgame? Take a guess.
Rupert Murdoch, owning YES.

Does the collapse of the Hostess Twinkies mean a victory for the Little Debbie/Yankees? And what happens when Rupert arrives?

Every Yankee fan knows that the seventh inning is the ideal time to unwrap a Little Debbie Snack Cake. Mm-mm. Tasty and delicious. Little Debbie Snack Cakes! Devour one now!

And frankly, if the bakers at Hostess didn’t spend all their time not advertising on Yankee games, maybe the Twinkie wouldn't be dangling off its cream-filled fiscal cliff.

We learned this week that, thanks to corporations (people) like Little Debbie, the YES Network - at $3 billion - is more valuable than the Yankee team - at $2 billion.  That means game outcomes are actually not as important as game ratings. And YES almost always wins. The Steinbrothers could probably cash out tomorrow and be worth at least $2 billion apiece - not exactly Koch boy dollars, but up there with the Olsen twins. And the tastiest and sexually kinkiest cog in the Yankee engine of production is, of course, Little Debbie herself.

Next year, it looks as though former Aussie Rupert Murdoch will set his spidery fingers upon Little Debbie, buying his way into the Yankees, just as he once did with the Los Angeles Dodgers. It's taken the Dodgers 25 years to get over Murdoch. Actually, they still haven't. Murdoch has always had a genius for grinding media entities down to their basic particle levels, and then infusing his agenda into the mix. When Gorbachev came to speak detente, Murdoch told him to go home. When Americans protested the Iraq war, Murdoch told them this was his country now, and they should leave. Most of all, he has a way of pushing people out of the drivers seat and then charging everybody more for the ride. 

Whatever your political leanings are, make no mistake here: Murdoch is a bigger threat to the Yankees than our lack of a RF. The YES Network will not allow this team to grow another Bernie Williams. It would never accept the three years of seasoning that Austin Jackson required to become the best CF in the American League. (Or that Adam Jones required, if that's your guy.) The YES Network will demand big names on a circus level that George Steinbrenner never imagined. Whomever was good three years ago will put on a good show in NYC. Murdoch will make Peter Angelos look like Gabe Paul.

Maybe I'm over-reacting. But YES is more valued than the Yankees, and Murdoch is coming to stay. He won't stay a silent partner for long. At least we'll have Little Debbie. I hope she doesn't mind being locked in a cellar.

Monday, November 19, 2012

YES WE CAN: Miracle Yankees named 2012 MLB "Club Retailer of the Year"

Sales over! Season over! They did it! The Yankees win the retailer! The Yankees win the retailer! I don’t believe this! I do not believe this! They’re going crazy in the gift shop! The Yankees win the retailer! Ladies and gentleman, the New York Yankees are the 2012 Retail Champions of Baseball! Ohhhh, doctor!

Yeah. Gotta feel good about this. I’m feelin’ SAUCY BIG. I’m feelin’ MEAT BLING. I’m feelin’ BEEF PRIDE. We are wearing the RETAIL CROWN. Hear that, Deetroit Tigers? Yankee swag RULES! Nobody wants your Halo cap, Angels. They want pinstripes. They want dirt from our old stadium, not yours, Miami. They want Yankee logo merch. That means cigarettes for Hank. Turtlenecks for Hal. Horses. Toys for the horses.

Check this out, Kansas City. According to the news release:

The Yankees and Legends Hospitality, led by Legends’ GM of Retail, Michael Loparo, earned the honor based on significant improvements to the Yankee Stadium clubhouse store as well as consistent product innovation and reinvention.

The team is also said to be planning exciting new products for 2013, such as:
George Herman Roots, "Organic turnips that pack a punch." 
Yogi Beera: "You ain’t drunk ‘till you’re drunk." 

Michael Kay-Mart: "See ya. . . there!" 
Giardi Bacardi Rum: "Go to the binders, and take the blinders."

As Yankee fans stare into the abyss, there is one possibly way to avoid falling in

Today, I again woke up to find David Phelps our fifth starter and Chris Dickerson patrolling right field. And - get this - I was relieved.

That's because waiting for Brian Cashman's inevitable bad trade is like sitting on death row, waiting for the padre to walk down the corridor.

Despite the hype - which is always solid - we have a relatively barren minor league system. That means we will have to bundle prospects - thinking Mason Williams and Slade Heathcott - to deal for anyone of substance. Thus, every morning I expect another Austin Jackson giveaway, where we take some slugger two years beyond peak foliage, or the next arm about to fall off from 220-plus innings. (Think King Felix in 2015.)

Listen:  Cash does a great job of picking usable parts off the scrap heap. But our problems cannot be solved by the next Brian Bruney. The Steinbrothers have changed their Prime Directive from "Win World Series" to "Cut Payroll to $189 M."  That means trades. And pardon me, folks, if I sound pessimistic. But it's trades that brought us to this sorry precipice.

No GM trades with the hated Yankees unless he can assure his local, Yankee-hating fan base that he just robbed us.  It's always payback for some free agent - Danny Tartabull or Bob Shirley - we "stole" long ago. Only a few teams answer our phone calls -- figure Pittsburgh, Seattle and/or maybe the Nats, if we want to unload another Tyler Clippard.

As long as we're more interested in banking profits than winning a championship, the future means "being creative." That boils down to trading youth for age, and that's how we ended up in the 11-Year Barf between 1983 and 1994.

The YES Network will soon be sold to News Corp.  Rupert Murdoch will not accept the July-to-October ratings collapse that comes from a fourth place team. He will exert pressure for another quick fix acquisition that lets us chase the new, final wild card slot.

I can tell you the one thing that could change our future: A creative renegotiation of Arod's contract.

We need to spread payments over a longer period of time, to avoid luxury tax. The NY Giants did it with Eli Manning. Teams do it commonly in the NFL and NBA - leagues with salary caps. Considering that MLB now has a salary cap - even though it doesn't call it one -- we need creative book-cooksmanship, and Arod needs to understand that he'll be happier with Robbie Cano behind him in the order.

There was never a rule made by billionaires that didn't have a loophole large enough to fit Prince Fielder. Hello, Yankee shyster lawyers. Where are you? Our fifth starter is David Phelps. Let's get on this.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Yankee Fans in the News: D.C.'s teacher of the year

The Council for Advancement and Support of Education and Carnegie Foundation recently named Patrick Jackson the Teacher of the Year for the District of Columbia.

This from the news release:

Step into Patrick Jackson's classroom and you're liable to get a baseball tossed at you. That's his preferred method of calling on students, so you better look alive.
Jackson, Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Education in SIS, will pose a question or offer an idea about Hobbes or NATO or even Star Trek, and then throw a squishy baseball (he is a devoted Yankees fan) at a student to engage him or her in the conversation.

Another Yankee fan doing his part.

Neighbor: Living next to A-Rod sucks

A-Rod just can't catch a break. This from the Miami Herald:

If it weren’t for a steady parade of visits from the likes of film director Michael Bay, supermodel Candice Swanepoel, and television personality Simon Cowell, living next to Alex Rodriguez might be pleasant. At least, that’s how his Miami Beach neighbor tells it. Since the Yankees slugger built a nine-bedroom mansion on tony North Bay Road last year, his home has been the site of everything from an episode of X Factor to a Victoria’s Secret commercial. Late last month, E! Entertainment used the home for a Kardashians’ photo shoot.
A-Rod's next door neighbor says there oughtabeea law about that stuff.

“I love my neighbor. He’s a great guy,” said Irwin Friedman, a retired plastics manufacturer. “I just don’t agree with him renting his property out to make money on a commercial enterprise.”

Friedman tried to get A-Rod to limit appearances from film crews. Didn't work. So in February, one week after Bay showed up to direct a Victoria’s Secret commercial, Friedman’s attorney fired off a letter to the city requesting tighter restrictions on commercial shoots.

Today's Moment of Faith: Message in a bottle found by Plattsburgh woman: Go Yankees

Friends, gather around the radio for today's ray of hope, courtesy of the Plattsburgh Press-Republican:

Lynne Layman was walking along Lake Champlain with a friend when she saw a green bottle on the shore. Inside was a message...

Yes, a note. It was written by three children, two weeks earlier. It was protected by a cork.  It included hand-drawn pictures, including one of a peace sign. It told of hopes and dreams. It conveyed the spirit of youth and the all-enduring passion of children everywhere. The message ended this way:

"Whenever you find this, if the Buffalo Bills are still a team, I hope they win the Super Bowl. Go Yankees.

Friends... at times, we all get down on our Yankee team. We start thinking of life as just another Swisher October, and we view every transaction as Jesus-for-Pineda, Austin Jackson for Grandyman. Oh, yes... it's easy to feel depressed and out of sorts. 

But when that happens, I hope you'll remember this story... and go looking for your own bottle, with your own message inside it.

Yes, friends... Somewhere out there, a bottle is waiting, just for you. Yes, you. It has a personal note, written in an ancient language no longer spoken, and the only way to learn that language is to pop the cork and check out the contents.  

Today, if the Yankee news is not what we want - if other teams are signing all the free agents, while we just keep losing players - look to the bottle. And if you find it, learn its truth. And if necessary, look for another bottle. And another.  It's out there, my friends.  The bottle is waiting... 

Go Yankees.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

BAD PUN TIME IS BAD FUN TIME! The Cortland County DA was once a porn star.

No lie. The Cortland (NY) District Attorney admitted yesterday that he was a porn star 25 years ago, while paying rent in NYC. He had been denying it. But an anonymous 15-minute YouTube attack video laid out the meat of his evidence for all to see.

OK, there is no Yankee connection to this, until someone finds the old movies starring Randy "King-Snake" Levine.

Frankly, this transcends baseball, politics and taste. It's not every day that a DA gets outed for being a porn star. The truth is this: We may never get this chance again. Ever. So... How many bad puns can we make?

1. His evidence always stands up in court. 

2. The jury isn't the only thing that is hung.

3. When he throws the book at someone, it's probably "Fifty Shades of Gray."

4. When he says, "Your honor," chances are, he's been on her.

5. Inside his briefs lurks the long arm of the law.

6. His motions are designed to bring about hard time.

7. He was in chambers... Marilyn Chambers.

8. He always shoots for a stiff penalty.

9. You don't want to be the butt of his wide-ranging probe.

10. He dispenses straight time.

12. He plans to run for judge... so he can bang the gavel!

The Yankees lost to Detroit due to the urban runs

I've been holding back on making comments because - well, golly, everybody - we're all still smarting from the blowout fanny-punting we took in the playoffs. And then I got those pictures of Judge Judy in a bikini in my head, and darn it all, something needs to be said.

We lost to Detroit because of all the free victories the Tigers gave their fans all season - they bribed the whole population, pure and simple. Then they turned out their urban players, who played well for Detroit, because of the urban thing. It's Detroit - urban. It's not fair.

That and I wonder if any of our Yankees were eating at Guy Fieri's restaurant.

Anyway, we all know these urban players. They bring out urban fans. The urban fans go to the games and cheer. The Yankees don't do that. We don't bribe our fans. We make them pay top dollar for everything. And when we play in Yankee Stadium, there's nobody there who doesn't belong.

Fortunately, our fans understand that we've got to cut spending. Just like Jessica Simpson has cut eating. Sixty pounds! She was over her salary cap and paying the luxury tax. Now she's lean and mean, like Jayson Nix. We can be her. We can be the Yankee Simpsons! We don't need to be like the Tigers. Cut Yankee spending, now.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Pride! Power! Pinstripes!

Screw the poor!

The Blue Jays must have read our post about signing Melky, because that's what they did

Toronto signed him for two years.

Right now, they're the team of Jose Bautista. We're the team of Jose Campos.

They're the team of Edwin Encarnacion. We're the team of Eduardo Nunez.

They're the team of Melky Cabrera. We're the team of Melky Mesa.

They just added Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, and Mark Buhrle.
We just added Josh Spence, David Herndon and Eli Whitside.

They're the Toronto Yankees.
We're the New York Blue Jays.

Obviously, pre-season rankings don't matter. But let's plan on being picked for fourth. Oh, well, as long as we keep our eyes on the prize: A lower payroll!

Hey, if Boston starts signing anybody, we could be picked for last. And when you're in last, you can dump anybody. That's the new norm, right!

I wonder if that's why they're selling YES to Murdoch?

They know the ratings will be in the cesspool next August.

I Could Be Screwed

Many of you know that my diet lacks some qualities recommended by the medical community.

My most frequent beverages are manhattans and beer. And my most common meal comes in plastic.

Today, I was informed that the source of my most consumed food and snack, at any hour of the day, may be going out of business.

I have consumed this American meal faithfully through every Yankee season, and all world series wins, since I was 10.

Can't we send them money or something?

Is this another curse imposed by the now bearded Cano and the other failures of last month?

Is it because we traded Jesus?

This does not bode well for next season.  Not at all.

"My Fair Yogi?" Suggested titles for Broadway play about the Yankees

The Midtown buzz today is the Yankee Broadway play which supposedly will open next year. (Hey, they did one for Billy Joel; why not Billy Martin?) But it's hush-hush, just like Brian Cashman's plans for right field. Nobody knows, and nobody's talking.


So here are the best bets for titles of the Broadway musical about the icons of Yankeehood.

Fiddler on the Ruth
How to Succeed in Boston Without Really Trying
Kiss Me, Kai
Hello, Joba!
La Cash aux Follies
The Book of Munson
Bye Bye Bruney
The Sound of Murcer
Grandy, Get Your Gun
Little Shop of Errors
Jeter Christ Superstar
Les Swisherables
The Full Torre
The Best Little Wheelhouse in Teixeira

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Fourth Game
Man of La Mantle

(UPDATE: Check out John M's picks in comments)

Daily lineup after Rupert Murdoch buys YES

No lie: News Corp - owner of Fox, the NY Post, the Wall Street Journal and the British Parliament - is on the verge of buying the YES Network. 

The new lineup...

9:00 a.m.  This Week in Phone Hacking
10:00 a.m.  Center Stage with Rebekah Brooks
11:00 a.m.  Yankeeography: Pippa Middleton
12:00 p.m.  Today in the Cayman Islands
1:00 p.m.  Last Night's Real Box Score with Karl Rove
2:00 p.m.  Hour of Pure Evil
3:00 p.m.  Today's NY Post A-Rod Attack
4:00 p.m.  Telethon to help survivors of Charles and David Koch
5:00 p.m.  Yankee Classics (1989 Australian Rugby victory over Guam)
6:00 p.m.  Hannity and Cone
7:00 p.m.  On the Record with Greta van Granderson
8:00 p.m.  Yankee Magazine with John Sterling and Megyn Kelly
9:00 p.m.  Girardi at Large!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Feeling Better Now

When I first heard of the deal made by the Blues Jays, I became a bit unruly.  Needless to say, a bender followed from which I am now emerging.

I realize now we should all be happy.

The guys the Blue Jays got for nothing are much too young to be Yankees.  I mean, we didn't sign Torri Hunter because he was only going to be 37, right?

In addition, and this is the real story; Miami could not find a single Yankee prospect, much less 7, with whom they had the slightest interest.  We could have let them pick any 20 guys they wanted, from any level, and we would still have had a one-sided deal, even if we only got one of the professionals traded north of the border.

Instead, we are throwing the dice that Andy comes back ( he is a perfectly aged "vet" pitcher for us and will surely have stamina and good legs through April), and Kuroda who, on official records, is just now pushing 40.  On Japanese records, Kuroda's CV shows a whole different history.  Let me just say, he was one of their youngest enlistees in WWII.

So our strategy looks pretty flawless.  We are going to hold the line at $187 million so the Hal and Hank brothers don't have to pay a luxury tax.  Just like in their personal lives.

Meanwhile, the Yankees just stay the course, drop a few of the younger guys, and load up on, "another year and another lost step, another slowed bat speed, another few miles off the fastballs," and stand our ground. And aren't we all salivating at the prospect of, "compensatory draft picks" if someone signs, Swisher, Sori, et al?

An early prediction;  Sori signs with Boston.

I read that Marriott is now breaking ground on a leisure village near the Tampa spring training site and I can stay there with Andy, Arod and some of the other guys.

 Paula Broadwell promises to do cabaret there, and Jill Kelly will make meat balls.

Life is good.

Dying 'Yankee' Demographic Concedes SW-B Election To Gift-Seeking Hobo Porcupines

Today's Essay Assignment: In 100 words or less, describe the reaction across baseball yesterday if it had been the Yankees instead of the Blue Jays who cut the deal with Miami

My entry:

For starters, zombie Bowie Kuhn claws his way up from the grave - (He's dead, right?) - and steals Bud Selig's hairpiece, holding it for ransom unless Selig nullifies the deal.

Peter Gammons throws himself off the street side of the Green Monster, bounces three times, and goes through Bill Buckner's legs, and at the funeral, the shamed Redsocks announce they would have given Miami a better deal, but the phones are still out from Hurricane Sandy.

Enraged, Tim McCarver goes back into the studio and with help from Tracy Chapman cuts an album of new songs about the Yankees destroying the sanctity of the game. 

Alphonso angrily notes that the trade emptied the entire Yankee farm system, and then must be reminded that he predicted none of them would be any good, but he still hates the trade.

When everything concludes, the trade is scrapped, all the players on both teams are donated to the Mets, the Yankees forfeit first round draft picks for trying too hard to win - it's only allowed for other teams - and A-Rod still hits .270 with mediocre power.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Cue Diane Sawyer? (Hick) The media hash declared Tronno winner inna big tray wit Miammmi (Hick) but the plays haven been counned

Whazzit? I dunno. General react to the Tronto-Mimmy mega-deal is that it's a vickory for the Canadians, but hahahahaa, the precincts haven't even been counted! Wait. Who put that exclammation point on that sentence? George, did you do thah?

The names on the baseball cards certainly look more impressive for Toronto, but I dunno. Sometimes, a deal is not what it seems.

The morning after we traded Jesus Montero for Michael Pineda, the media was calling Cashman a genius.

Right now, the trade is obscured by everybody's primal need to vilify the Miami ownership. That's the story line of the day: Horrible owners. They built that Monstrosity Field. They hired obnoxious Ozzie. They made Hanley Ramirez a diva. They overpaid for Jose Reyes. They traded Hanley Ramirez. They fired obnoxious Ozzie. Now they've fired Jose Reyes. Insufferable! Disgrace! There oughta be a law.

Listen: I hate owners as much as anybody. But when I look at that deal, Toronto has given up some fine young talent. I figured the Blue Jays would be next year's Orioles. All they needed was another year toward the median age peak. We'll see. But I'd count the votes before declaring a winner.

There is one free agent who could save 2013 and stabilize our future, but it would take major stones to sign him

His name is Melky. I believe you know him? In July, he was Neil Armstrong.  Now, he's Lance Armstrong. We go back a ways with him. He’s close with our best player. We have an opening in right field. We could use a switch-hitter with pop. He needs to prove himself. We could use a guy who needs to prove himself. We need him and, frankly, he needs us.

But some of you are already shaking your heads. There’s an irrational anger about performance enhancing drugs. Frankly, I suspect 90 percent of the players in the last 10 years tried them, the way college kids do pot. In 10 or 20 years, people will look back and give the great ones credit: It was a league of juicers, and they were the best. They were trying to win. It’s not like they were throwing games.

I’m not saying it’s right. I’m saying people shouldn't get so uptight about it. A few guys get caught. Most get away. Does anybody really think 370 pound football players are not taking steroids? Come on. Get real. And besides, we have an opening in right field.

He can play the corner. He can play in New York. He’s a switch-hitter. He might take a one-year deal, hoping to rehabilitate his name. Off the juice, he won’t hit .350. But he might hit .290. I’m not saying pay him $15 million. I’m saying we court him. I’m saying we make him an offer. I’m saying we tell him he'll always be a Yankee, we wished he never left, and we want to have him back. That and $6 million might get it done.

Listen: If what we're worried about is how badly the Yankees will be booed on the road, why are we Yankee fans?

If what we’re worried about is having to justify the presence of an unpopular player, why are we Yankee fans?

If what we’re worried about is that somebody will rail and call us cheaters, trying to buy pennants, why are we Yankee fans? 

Listen: We are Yankee fans because we want to win every frickin' game.


Sign him, Cash. I beg of you. Get it done. Now.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Should we worry about this lady living in Tampa near Jete?

Frankly, Tampa isn't that big of a town. All it would take would be one bash thrown for a military Yankee fan pooh bah and - boom - she have Jete in her clutches.

Can you imagine how Jete would play after reading 20,000 pages of email? That would be like reading Girardi's entire binder book.

I just hope Jete is laying low.