'98 Yanks rally to tie All-Time Yankee series with '51 team

Series tied: 2-2
Knobby, Jeet, sparkplugs!
Gil takes El Duque downtown!
In dramatic appearance, Joe D ignites stadium!
Mo flubs lead, then comes through!
Billy fails!
Next up: Vic Raschi v David Cone!

Thursday, January 28, 2021

So long, Masahiro, hello O'Day, and - gulp - zoiks, Toronto

After two long months of "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida" - (Iron Butterfly! wooo!)  - the drum solo has stopped, and everyone is scrambling for an open chair. Latest news: The Yankees switched Adam Ottavino for Darren O'Day - with Brett Gardner in the wings, and Masahiro Tanaka swimming home to Japan, like Kong in the last reel of King Kong vs. Godzilla (1962), which surely will outlive all remakes. 

There is much to - as prissy news hosts love to say - "unpack," so...

1. After years of watching him hypnotize us with Baltimore, the Yanks have signed the goggled O'Day, 38, a RH version of Randy Choate, to a $2.5 million deal. This comes hours after we shipped both Adam Ottavino's contract and Adam Ottavino to Boston - creating an unprecedented kismet opportunity: We can replace Ottavino's "0" jersey with a "0" for O'Day. Fuckinay, right? Iron Butterfly! 

O'Day is one of those pitchers who, every time he shows up, you wonder why MLB doesn't have more sidearmers? RH bats hit a career .193 against him - (lefties hit only .228, so no sweating the three-batter rule) - and he reminds me of how Joe Garagioloa described Kent Tekulve: "a long, skinny nightmare." He'll be fun to watch, especially when a RH slugger marches to the plate.

For the record, I still despise the Ottavino salary dump, because it stems from Hal Steinbrenner's miserly and nepotistic cheap-aholic-ness. I don't mind fiscal frugality, but when an owner spends his way into a mudhole - which is what Hal did with Stanton, Hicks, El Chapo, etc. - poormouthing doesn't work. An owner is either trying to win at all costs, or he's chasing money. When the Yankees are doing salary dumps, our owner is cheaping out on us.

But more moves are coming. Maybe Hal will surprise us. I suspect we will sign Brett Gardner and release OF Greg Allen without ever even a glimpse of him. (If that happens, we'll call him "Oumuamua," named after the elongated space turd that flew in and out of our solar system a few years ago, and which might be an alien ship. In our lifetimes, we won't know.  Go, Oumuamura!)  

2. Masahiro Tanaka is returning to Japan. I am alternately relieved and pissed. I'm happy he's returning home - a hero, a great man and most of all... a career Yankee. He will never don another U.S. sports team's jersey. I could not bear to see him, say, clad in the orangey, Dr.-Deborah-Birx-scarflike trimmings of the Mets. But, damn, Masahiro deserved an offer from the Yankees. We need a horse, and he's a great one. 

The Yankee rotation is a house of cards. Roll the dice. It could be solid. Or we end up with one starter - Gerrit Cole - and a no-vacany Injury List. Damn. Masahiro deserved an offer. He didn't get one because Hal didn't want to pay a luxury tax. Horrible...

3. No sooner did folks note Toronto's one weakness - starting pitchers, like everybody - than the Jays traded for Stephen "Mr. Mets" Matz, age 29 and coming off a down year. What's unnerving here is the cold-blooded way that the Mets signed Matz to a one-year deal in December, then jettisoned him a month later, like a plate of bad clams. Nobody gets loyalty from an iguana.

Apparently, the Mets are all-in on Trevor Bauer. If so, yesterday's trade is a double-bank shot against the Yankees: Toronto strengthens its rotation, and the Mets clear space for signing the best free agent pitcher on the market.

The Yankees are seeing their worst month of tabloid covers since this blog began keeping count. In terms of attention, they will enter 2021 as NYC's secondary baseball team. But shhh, pass the word: That might not necessarily be a bad thing. 

The music has stopped, and soon, we'll be down to the last chairs. I think the Yankees have another move in mind. Is there really space for both Clint Frazier and Miguel Andujar? We should know soon. So, turn on music. IRON BUTTERFLY, WOOOO!


JM said...

A 38-year-old submariner. But, a really good 38-year-old submariner.

Hal sucks. Tanaka should've finished his career in pinstripes. This is embarrassing.

Local Bargain Jerk said...

No Shirt.
No Shoes.
No Salvation.

Celerino Sanchez said...

Was Scott Procter available? He's pitched as much as Kluber & Tallion (The Stallion) have in the past 2 years

ranger_lp said...

Look I love Tanaka too. But he has become a five inning pitcher and an UCL re-injure away from career ending territory. Winning teams are going with younger arms (The Rays). O'day is just a stop gap. Me thinks they are going to look at their 40-man and figure out what they have...they had to do it eventually considering Judge's contract is looming for a huge increase. If they get it right, they look like geniuses. If not, they can make a move mid-season or next year. It's not as bad as you think.