Tagged: Chicago White Sox

What Is It With Ballplayers And Beards?

Today’s news that the Yankees signed the arbitration-eligible Chad Gaudin and Boone Logan didn’t exactly send me into the streets shouting with excitement. My reaction was more like this.
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Sure, it’ll be nice to have extra arms available in the pen. But what caught my attention was the pre-Yankees facial hair sported by both pitchers. I mean, seriously. Here’s Boone when he was with the White Sox. What was he thinking?
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Not only are his eyebrows the size of my arms, but that thing on his chin could be used to paint houses.
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And how about Chad Gaudin when he was a Cub?
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His beard was like something he clipped off the head of Raggedy Andy and taped to his face.
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Neither is as bad as this though.
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I guess what I’m asking is why? Can some of the guys who read this blog explain the appeal of these beards? I’m not anti-beard, given that my husband has had one since the day I met him and wouldn’t shave it off for anything. I’m just not getting the billy goat look.
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How do you not end up with ketchup all over it every time you eat a burger? How do you not find a nest of hornets in it? How do you not know when it’s time to say, “Enough?”
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Just asking.
P.S. Since he was mentioned in the comments, here’s Ryan Franklin and his chin music. Euwww.
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Dreaming of El Duque

According to this story on MLB.com, Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman, the 21-year-old free agent who throws 100 miles an hour, is auditioning for the Yankees and other interested teams in Houston on Tuesday. Will he live up to the hype? Or will he underwhelm everybody, as he did in his last stint with the Cuban team in the WBC?
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One thing is certain: he’s not ready for the majors. He’ll need seasoning and won’t be slotted into anybody’s starting rotation right away. He’s got the obligatory diamond stud earrings though, ready or not.
Obviously, I don’t have a clue whether the Yankees will sign Chapman or for how much. We’ve had mixed results with Cuban pitchers. Contreras was an expensive flop. I still get nightmares whenever I think of him walking batters, serving up bombs, and looking distraught in the process.
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I also remember him sweating more profusely than any ballplayer alive. I always wanted to reach through the TV and towel him off.
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Thinking the problem might be loneliness, Cashman and the Yankees finagled a way for him to be reunited with his family here in the States.
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It didn’t do any good, and before long Jose was shipped off to the White Sox. He won a World Series with Chicago but has since been traded to the Rockies. He and New York weren’t a match – unlike Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez, who owned the city for awhile.
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I remember vividly when El Duque defected from Cuba and arrived in the Bronx. I’d never seen anybody like him.
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I mean, can you contort into that position? Only if you’re a pretzel.
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Sure, he was hot tempered, and he and Jorge got into it on occasion. And sure, no one really knew how old he was.
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But there was a time when he was pure magic for the Yankees – the toast of the town. It’s saying something when a major sporting goods company produces a TV commercial in your honor starring David Cone. (Love the cameo by Luis Sojo).
Does Chapman have the potential to be an El Duque? Or will he follow the trajectory of Contreras? This is why GMs, not bloggers, make the big bucks.
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Yankees Win And YouTube Ate My Video

Sweeps are nice.
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Given how badly the White Sox treated the Yanks in Chicago, I really liked how we won all three games against them in the Bronx. Sunday’s 8-3 job was a relatively close contest until the seventh, when Melky’s double, Hairston’s sac fly and Tex’s homer broke it open.
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Aceves and Hughes were spectacular in relief, as opposed to Coke, who is getting on my nerves with his tendency to give up bombs.
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Which brings me to Joba and the Rules. Please. Thirty-five pitches?
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What’s the point? Why should he even bother to get loose? What possible gain is there in having him show up for three innings? I’m all for protecting his arm, but the Rules are Ridiculous. Cashman, for all that is good and right and holy, please find us another arm within the next few days!
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If the Angels could get Kazmir, why can’t we get somebody? No, I’m not saying Mitre and Gaudin aren’t “somebody.” It’s just that they’re the sort of somebodys I don’t particularly want to see in the playoffs. Are you listening, Cash?
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About that video I mentioned. I spent hours trying out the iMovie software on my Mac. I came up with what I thought was a very amusing tribute to Jeter, who continues to amaze me with the great season he’s having.
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I experimented with all sorts of graphics and music and fonts. I’m not saying I was this guy, but it was fun playing director.
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My intention was to upload the video to YouTube and then post it here. But noooo. Somewhere in the “rendering,” it got swallowed up.
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Sorry about that. I’ll try again when I’m feeling adventurous. In the meantime, my nephew sent me this pic today and I had to share it. He’s a big Yankee fan and so, apparently, are his two boys. I bet they were laughing at the Joba Rules.
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All Hail Sergio Mitre!

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I know I’ve been hard on Sergio. Let’s face it: he’s been mediocre since getting called up to the Bronx. But today I come not to bury him…
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…but to praise him.
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He one-hit the White Sox over six-plus and would have finished the seventh if not for that nasty comebacker to his right forearm. Yep, a contusion.
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His sinker was sinking and his stuff was dancing, and he was throwing strikes. After he was lifted, Chad Gaudin took over and pitched more scoreless baseball, which resulted in the Yankees’ 10-0 blanking of the White Sox. Ozzie was not amused, and I don’t blame him.
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Yes, our guys were on fire today, but his White Sox looked like a team on the skids.
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No pitching, no offense and no defense (three errors). No wonder he told the media after the game that he was embarrassed. Maybe a massage from Jose Canseco would make it all better?
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Or maybe he should tell his team to “lose like a Mexican.”
Speaking of being on fire, could Derek Jeter get any hotter? He had three hits, stole a base, laid down a perfect sac bunt and made enough sparkling plays at short for a highlights reel. Could he win the MVP for the first time in his already illustrious career?
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Cano, last night’s hero, had three hits too, and Hairston and Damon contributed big-time doubles. And just when I thought the game would actually be homer-less, A-Rod, after saving a run on a great stop/throw in the fifth, went deep in the eighth.
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Bottom line, as Jeter likes to say, the Yankees are now 33 games over .500 with an 81-48 record. Keep it up, boys. You can’t fail me now. Not when I’m dreaming of this.
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Walkoff #12 Beats White Sox, and I Disturb the Peace

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I really should buy myself one of these T-shirts. They come in navy blue and white, which would be ideal for a Yankee fan, and they tell the story of the feisty 2009 team. Just when you think they’re cooked, fried, roasted, done, they mount a miraculous comeback and win the game in walkoff style. Tonight’s 5-2 victory over the White Sox was a perfect example. I mean, Cano? Hello? The guy who’s been struggling with runners in scoring position? He was the hero?
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Yeah, he was, after he hit a three-run homer in the tenth. Naturally, he received the Reddi–Wip treatment.
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It was all so exciting it made me want to shoot some of the stuff at myself.
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It also made me erupt in a ridiculously loud scream that scared my neighbors to death.
But Cano wasn’t the only hero. It takes a whole team to win games. CC was superb, shutting out the White Sox through six. He got into trouble in the seventh, letting the Sox tie it up at 2-2, but it could have been much worse if not for a great throw home by Swisher. Yes, Swisher. Does anybody know what’s up with Wilson Betemit these days?
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I didn’t think so.
A-Rod made a couple of impressive defensive plays too, and the relief pitching was about as good as it gets. Phil Hughes emerged from the remote cave where Girardi has been holding him captive.
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He struck out the side in the eighth. I have no idea why he wasn’t brought back out for the ninth with the score still knotted at 2-2, but Mo was perfecto. That made the tenth a hairy proposition.
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I wasn’t thrilled to see Bruney on the mound, but he pitched a 1-2-3 inning. Up stepped Cano in the bottom of the frame after Matsui and Swisher had walked, and that was that.
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I don’t know what the Yankees will do for an encore on Saturday, weather permitting, but I bet it’ll be worth watching.
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Happy Anniversary to Me

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OK, it’s a little weird to give yourself a cake, but how can I not celebrate? What’s the occasion? The one year anniversary of this blog! I can’t believe I’ve been at it so long.
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Last August, the Yankees were on their way to missing the playoffs for the first time in 13 years. Things weren’t going so well. But my publisher said, “Your Yankees book is coming out in February. Start a blog so you’ll make baseball friends.” It felt like a parent saying, “Go play outside and meet other kids.”
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I’d written 13 novels, but I had no idea what a blog was, much less how to write one. So I just starting posting daily musings about Yankees games, about my conversations with my Yankee-fan husband, and about my run-ins with non-Yankee fans at holiday gatherings (like this entry, for instance). I even wrote about the wildfires here in Santa Barbara and what it was like to watch baseball while under an evacuation threat. There was always something new to write about, even in the off-season.
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Then my “Confessions of a She-Fan” book came out, and I wrote about my publication parties and various signings, including one at spring training in Tampa. I had discovered a new toy by then – the Flip Video camcorder – and began conducting interviews with other fans via the newly christened “She-Fan Cam.”
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There were so many ways to entertain with this blog, I discovered. Sometimes I’d get so caught up in my posts that I’d forget to get dressed.
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Thanks to Mark Newman, our MLBlogosphere guru, for all the technical help. Thanks to Vanessa of Flair for the Dramatic for being my first MLBlogger friend. (Good luck at college, V!) Thanks to Jeff and Allen of Red State Blue State, the top dogs at MLBlogs, for throwing a few readers my way. And thanks to the Yankee fans who’ve made this blog a destination; you have great taste in baseball teams. 🙂
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As for the Yankees’ 7-2 series loss against the Rangers, was that game frustrating or what? The starter for Texas, Nippert, walked seven batters and yet the Yanks couldn’t find a way to score more than a couple of runs. Come on! And AJ looked like he would be lights out – we were all saying on Twitter that he had no-hitter stuff – but gave up a homer to Kinsler in the fourth. Coke was atrocious. And Robertson served another one up to Kinsler. But it’s on to the White Sox this weekend and a chance to pad our lead in the division. Let’s step it up, Yankees, and take it to the pale hose!
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