Ozzie Guillen Is the New Grady Little
Well, he is. Did you see how he went to the mound in the 7th, checked on his pitcher and LEFT HIM IN to face Xavier the Savior? Reminded me of the good old days when Grady left Pedro in too long.
Before that, we were all subjected to watching yet another rookie pitcher handcuff the Yankees offense. But the X Man woke everybody up. Cano hit the ball with authority, which was entertaining, and even Melky got a hit – eventually.
As for Hughes, despite the high pitch count he looked better this trip. Less nibbling. More strikes. Just couldn’t put hitters away.
And there was another player milestone tonight: A-Rod hit 35 homers in 11 consecutive seasons, tying The Babe’s record. Even in a “down” year, he’s pretty damn consistent.
After our game was over I switched over to Rays-Red Sox and watched TB take it to Boston. I had my eye on the Rays last season and wrote about it in the NY Times. Everybody laughed and said I was nuts. Is anybody laughing now? Even without Crawford and Upton, the Rays keep going, especially at home. There must be a lesson here. I’m just not sure what it is. Go younger? Come in last so you get draft picks? Hire a manager who spent years in the Angels organization? What?
I’ve never been a big A-Rod fan. Too many distractions, not enough fire and too much baggage. But you’ve got to hand it to the man. Anyone who can hit that many home runs consistently, even in a down year, can play on my team anytime. He’s not a Scottie Brosius or a Graig Nettles as far as fire is concerned (at least not that I’ve seen), but I hope the Yanks can keep him in the corral for a good long time.
The sedative I required after the Mets latest high wire act is finally wearing off.
Hafta respectfully disagree about the comparison of Grady and Ozzie. Ozzie’s crazy and an unhinged raving lunatic whose mouth and antics are eventually gonna get him fired, but strategically, he’s an excellent manager. I didn’t see the game, so don’t know about that specific move. After the way Octavio Dotel almost blew the game on Sunday night, maybe he trusted Richard more than his mid-to-late inning relievers.
I actually admired Grady a great deal (while simultaneously never wanting him to manage my team); for all the boneheaded moves he made, he did what he thought was right for better or (usually) worse. One rarely mentioned screwup was starting Hong Chih-Kuo in game 2 of the 2006 NLDS against the Mets while Greg Maddux was rested and ready to pitch; the argument was that Maddux pitched better at Dodger Stadium, but the guy had handcuffed the Mets so many times at Shea, how do you start Kuo instead of Maddux especially after losing the first game?
Paul, you may respectfully disagree with me anytime! The truth is, it’s easy to second guess a manager (and fun too). Do they leave a guy in too long? Are they too quick with the hook? If it turns out well, we praise them. If not, well, we write snarky blog entries about them. That’s baseball.
Stefan, did you watch the post game interview with A-Rod after the milestone HR last night? He said all the requisite things (He was humbled…He was grateful to stay healthy….He was glad to be wearing the pinstripes) but in response to his getting booed, he stopped spouting cliches and just said, “I stunk.” He acknowledged that the mechanics of his swing are off and he’s working hard to correct them. It’s refreshing when it’s Alex who speaks, not A-Rod. He’ll never be Mantle or Jeter in terms of public affection, but I think that when the divorce stuff is out of the way, he’ll have a monster season next year. Just a guess.
Jane, since you’re also good at predicting the future, any chance you can FORCE the future? If so, you should write the Chicago Tribune and tell them that the Cubs will be doomed for another 100 years. Thanks in advance 😉
Jeff – First off, congrats on the #1 ranking for RSBS. I bow down to you and your awesome bloggyness. As for my ability to force the future, wow. That would be fun. Like a Stephen King character. (Wait. No. He’s a Red Sox fan. I should have picked another horror writer.) Anyhow, if I could force the future, I would surely write to the Tribune on your behalf. But first I would re-do the 2008 season and make the Yankees win every game in a blowout.
When Tampa added Garza this last off season I said that they would be competitive real soon. I didn’t expect it would be this season, but I figured within the next few years. With the Yankees out, I’m pulling for them in the post season.
I’m pulling for the Rays to win the AL pennant, but if the Dodgers get in to the WS (a long shot, but still), I’ll be rooting for Torre and Donnie Baseball. I’m out here in CA so I’d like to go to a game in LA.
It would be incredibly ironic if the Dodgers make the world series. Even more so if they win it. But if the Dodgers and Tampa make it into the world series, I won’t know who to pull for. I guess I’ll just have to cross that bridge if and when we get to it.
The Rays are an amazing story for sure, and they have the nicest people running the organization. I think I’ve said it before on this blog – they treated me like a VIP when I was at the Trop researching my book last season. BUT how cool would it be to see Joe and Donnie and Bowa in a victory pileup on the field after they beat the Rays/Angels/Red Sox/White Sox.
The Rays now have a solid core of players (i.e. the emergance of Longoria, Navarro, Sonnastine, Shields) into a lineup that could already hit and a staff that was on the rise. The thing that has taken them to the next level is the depth they have. They’ve got guys like Eric Hinske, Cliff Floyd, Grant Balfour (in the pen), to come in and be just as good. Those guys have helped them put together a very remarkable season.
Now it looks like David Price will be for Tampa, what Dontrelle Willis was the Marlins in 2003. Oh, sorry, somehow I always find a way to offend a Yankee fan, even without trying.
“Ozzie Guillen Is the New Grady Little” — except for that shiny thing on Ozzie’s finger. Viva la difference. Have we mentioned lately that we are glad you are at MLBlogs!
Actually, welikeroy, I was thinking that David Price will be for Tampa what Joba Chamberlain already is for the Yankees! No offense taken!
Mark, you’re right. Ozzie has a ring. But last night he left his pitcher in one batter too long, a la Monsieur Little. So French, aren’t we? And thanks for the nice words about my joining the MLBlogs party. You’re a great host!
I just want to know what free agents the Yanks are going to get. Sabathia? Sheets? Burnett? All good pitchers, all going to get a good payday. Burnett has had injury problems, so out of those fearsome 3 who knows? Sheets or Sabathia might be the best bet, but I don’t think you can really go wrong with any of them. But what the hay? Your the Yankees, get them all.
Personally, I think Sheets is too injury prone (shades of Pavano). If I were the GM I’d go after Sabathia. But I read that he’s building a house in California and wants to go to the Angels or Dodgers. Still, the Yankees will probably offer the most money so who knows. As for getting them all, you’re thinking of the OLD Yankees. We’re all about developing the kids these days (or trying to). Wang is a sure thing. Joba will probably start. Hughes may be in the rotation. They’re looking at Coke and Aceves. Mussina could be brought back. And then there’s Pettitte (maybe yes, maybe no). What about the Jays? Who will they target?
Moose has been one Yankee feel-good story this year… that and A-Rod managed to stay out of the spotlight despite his Madonna-links and divorce. At least he maintains his coolness, which is way more than I could ever do… not to mention hit 500 homeruns and make a bazillion dollars a year 🙂
Jeff, I think it was interesting how the A-Rod/Madonna/divorce stuff exploded in the media, then very quickly and quietly went away. Not even the NY Post had anything about it until today, when all the papers reported that A-Rod and C-Rod had wrapped up their settlement. Very professionally handled, that’s for sure. Has it all affected A-Rod performance this year? How could it not? But the guy still managed to hit 35 HRs and have another 100-RBI season. There’s still the “clutch” thing, but maybe his next wife will be a shrink. Oh, wait. The last wife had a psychology degree. Never mind.