Tagged: Barbara Kopple

Yanks-Rays Round 4: Back Where We Started

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Yes, we ended up with a split. And there was nothing pretty or sweet about it. How many times have we watched CC disintegrate? Hardly ever, that’s how many times. And yet he looked vulnerable through the fifth inning and positively horrendous in the sixth – like a great big parade float that was punctured and fell to the ground.
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Still, I give him a pass. He’s been terrific, so he’s entitled to a bad game even if it did cost him the Cy Young award. And David Price is a really, really good pitcher. Still, how to explain the Yankees inability to score with the bases loaded – more than once? That was more troubling to me, as was Joba’s ineffectiveness and the fact that Vazquez couldn’t find home plate if he had a shovel.
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Did he hit three batters in a row or did I dream it? Never mind. I know the answer. If he had plans for the postseason, he can probably forget about them and schedule a nice, long vacation for himself. Will the Yankees win the division now that they’re basically tied with the Rays again? Tampa has some comfy match ups, while we’re stuck with the Red Sox and Blue Jays. I have no idea what will happen from here on – none. Maybe I should consult the tarot card reader I spoke to last year, but I’ve been afraid to. What if she tells me something I don’t want to hear? Couldn’t handle it.
Changing the subject, did everybody see the ESPN Steinbrenner documentary directed by two-time Oscar winner Barbara Kopple? I missed its premiere on Tuesday night, but watched it after the game tonight. As some may remember, I flew to New York last year to be interviewed for the doc.
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I met Barbara too, and it turned out we both grew up in Scarsdale loving the Yankees.
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Here’s the bad news: I ended up on the cutting room floor of the doc. I found out a couple of weeks ago that I wasn’t in it and wasn’t surprised. Barbara shot a ton of film, interviewed hundreds of people and only had an hour of air time. The focus turned out to be the transition from the old Stadium and George’s running the team to the new Stadium and Hal’s ascendance, and I don’t think I said anything particularly interesting about any of that. I really enjoyed the film, especially the interview with Hal. Here’s a clip. It requires sitting through Pujols hawking Dove soap, but it’s worth a look.
Getting back to the present, I’m nervous about the Red Sox series this weekend. Not because it’s the Red Sox but because we just need to win games right now. Need to win games. Right now. Please.

My Tuesday in New York City

Where’s summer? It’s cold here! Brrr.

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Oh, well. I guess it’s better than sweltering in the heat.
This morning, I headed downtown from my hotel to SoHo, where I spent two very enjoyable hours being interviewed for Barbara Kopple’s ESPN documentary on the Yankees. A two-time Oscar winner, Barbara couldn’t have been more welcoming, and it was a pleasure to meet her. My husband Michael took a photo of me with her.
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It was her very capable and enthusiastic associate, David Cassidy, who conducted the interview. He’s a diehard Yankee fan, so there was lots to talk about.
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I have no idea if I said anything useful, but I guess I’ll find out after the documentary airs next year.
Then, it was back uptown to the studio where they tape YES’s “Yankees Magazine.” I had a lot of fun answering questions posed by George Pisanti, who’s been producing the show for several years. I’ll post my air date as soon as I have it.
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Later, it was off to dinner with this guy….
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…Alphonso, the infamous pessimist who makes special appearances on the Yankees blog, “It Is High.”
I had told him I wanted to watch the Yankees-Nats game, so he thoughtfully chose a restaurant with a TV tuned to the game – only to tell me over and over again why the Yankees would lose.
“No, they won’t,” I said, as the Yanks went up 2-0.
“Yes, they will,” he said, as the Nats went up 3-2.
OMG, I thought. Anderson Hernandez, the guy who never hits homers, according to my scouting report, smacked a three-run shot off CC!
“See how they can’t score any runs off this nobody pitcher named Martis?” said Alphonso, as he polished off his second Manhattan. “And look at A-Rod. Another terrible game for him. They’re a third place team, I’m telling you.”
“They are not,” I said, giving him a nudge in the ribs as Tex tied the score with a double.
“They’ll find a way to lose, and it’ll be an embarrassment,” he said, popping an oyster into his mouth and risking some dreaded food poisoning.
“Oh yeah?” I said just as Cano smacked a double off Ron Villone in the seventh, driving in the go-ahead run.
“But Joe’s bringing Bruney in for the eighth,” he said. “He’s not ready for this. It’s his first day off the DL.”
Bruney was more than ready. So was Mo. And then there were the dazzling defensive plays by Pena and Cano, who went 4-for-4. Except for Jeter coming out with ankle stiffness, it was a nice, neat 5-3 victory for the Yankees.
“But they should have beaten the Nationals 50-0,” said Alphonso.
“A win is a win!” I maintained, my frustration boiling over.
I hate to admit it, but I couldn’t contain myself a minute longer and threw my piece of salmon fillet in his face. He retaliated by dumping his entire serving of cherrystone clams on my head. What should have been a friendly dinner between bloggers disintegrated into pure chaos at the restaurant, which, by the way is called Docks and serves excellent seafood.

My Upcoming Trip To Yankeeville

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Since tonight’s Yankees-Rays game was rained out, I decided to muse about my trip to New York (I leave Thursday). I’m getting jazzed about all the cool things I’ll be doing in the Apple. 
Well, there’s one thing I’m not looking forward to.
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As anyone who’s read my book may remember, I’m not wild about flying. If there’s turbulence I tend to guzzle too much plane wine and end up like this.
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With any luck, my cross-country flight will be smooth and uneventful, and I’ll arrive at JFK on Thursday night with all my faculties.
On Friday, I’ll be doing my weekly segment on “The Natural,” the New Jersey-based radio show where I joust with host Greg Marotta about the Yankees. (He thinks Joba should be in the pen. I don’t. Not anymore.) 
But the rest of the weekend will be family time. I haven’t seen my mother in a while, so it’ll be great to visit with her in Westchester.
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(No, that isn’t my mother. I just felt the need to put a nice lady up there. Hopefully, my actual mother will be wearing the Jeter jersey I bought her. She has lots of opinions about the Yanks and should be good She-Fan Cam material.)
After resting up at Mom’s, it’ll be on to the city for some serious media scrutiny about my book.
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Are you ready for this? Barbara Kopple, who won two Oscars for her documentaries, is interviewing me for the doc she’s shooting about the Yankees. It’s scheduled to air in the fall on ESPN. For all I know, I’ll end up on the proverbial cutting room floor, but it was exciting to be contacted and I’m looking forward to meeting Barbara.
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No clue what she’ll want to talk about for two hours, but I guess I’ll find out. I did love her two Oscar winners:
“Harlan County, U.S.A.” about the coal miner’s strike in Kentucky…
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and “Shut Up & Sing” about the Dixie Chicks’ crusade for freedom of speech.
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A little later that afternoon, I’ll head to the YES Network’s production studio to tape a segment  for “Yankees Magazine,” the weekly show hosted by Bob Lorenz.
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I’ll be sure not to mention that I regularly rip Michael Kay on this blog (gently).
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Wednesday will be the best day of all: my first trip to the new stadium for the Yankees-Nationals game. I can’t wait to see the Yanks in action. I’m also dying to sample all the food everyone’s been talking about. Watching this MLB video about the Food Network concession made me really hungry, although I could do without the fried pickle. 
I’ll be sitting with my husband and my friend Patty from the New York Times. We’ll be up in the nosebleeds (section 323) but behind home plate. If anybody’s going to the game on the 17th, please stop by and say hi.
Also….this is still to be confirmed, fingers crossed….I’ll be having a signing for my book before the game, from 4:30-6, right outside the one-and-only Stan’s Sports Bar across the street from the Stadium!
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Stan’s is an institution in Yankeeville. Its owner, Louis Dene, who happens to live part time in Santa Barbara, has managed to keep the place hopping for years. If you’ve been there, you know that it’s wall-to-wall Yankee fans.
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I’m hoping we’ll be able to sell books right in the middle of all the craziness, with the help of Denise, the community relations manager at the Bay Plaza Barnes & Noble in the Bronx.
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The main thing for that night is…IT CANNOT RAIN! 
I think I’ll start my anti-rain dance right now. 
Whew. I’m a little dizzy and those feathers made me sneeze, but it was worth it if it keeps the rain away.