Tagged: Garret Anderson

Torre Story 3

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The third and final game in the Yankees’ series against the Dodgers was one of the most exciting contests of the season, in my opinion. Gone was the nonstop chatter about Torre leaving New York and A-Rod not talking to him and blah-blah-blah past history. Well, ESPN couldn’t resist bringing up “the soap opera,” as they called it, but once the game turned into a nail-biter, it was all baseball. After stinking up the early innings – how many bunts could Pettitte not handle? – the offense and relief pitching got serious. Robertson and Marte did their jobs (Joba, not so much) so that A-Rod could pop one into the seats and put the Yanks on the board. We were down 6-3 in the ninth when Torre brought in Broxton.
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Yeah, he’s large, but he’s not Mo. A parade of hits greeted him, including a huge at bat by Chad Huffman. I know, I wasn’t thrilled to have Huffman up in that situation either. He’s just a kid we got off San Diego’s scrap heap.
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But he came through big time to pull us to 6-5. Clap Clap Clap, Chad. I take back what I said about you on Twitter.
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My boy Colin Curtis was up next, and his ground out after about 1,000 pitches (I exaggerate, but he really worked that at bat, didn’t he?) sent Granderson scurrying home (thank you, Loney, for not making the play at home). Wow. All tied up. My stomach was in one big knot.
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Why was I so nervous? I mean, Mo was on the hill. What drama could possibly take place? Especially when the normally placid Garret Anderson was batting.
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Oh. G.A. didn’t like Chris Guccione’s strike zone and got tossed. Torre came out to have his say, and he and the Guccione went at it – for like ever. Was Joe really that upset or was it a bit of gamesmanship to disrupt Mo’s rhythm? No matter. Mo took care of business. On to the 10th and George Sherrill.
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Maybe his beard distracted him, or maybe Robinson Cano is just that good. All I know is that Cano’s homer put the Yanks up 8-6, capping an improbable six-run rally. Mo was a hammer again in the 10th – and again the Dodger hitters weren’t happy. This time Russell Martin slammed down his bat in anger, nearly hitting Posada with it, and there was more arguing with Guccione.
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I’ve watched Mo fan batters over the years. I get the frustration. But the Yankees won fair and square to finish off a very entertaining series. Bravo.
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Clearance Sale! Everything Must Go!

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With only two weeks until spring training, I took myself out for a little retail therapy. No, not for shoes and handbags. Please. I’m talking about free agents. They’re on sale! They’ve been marked down! They’re at low, low prices and they come with home delivery at no extra charge!
Not one to pass up a bargain, I marched over to the Free Agent Store and spent a few hours browsing the racks. Would I find anyone for the Yankees in my capacity as their personal shopper? Anyone who might look good in pinstripes?
I breezed past the Pitchers Department, since the Yanks are well stocked with arms for the season, and zeroed in on the Position Players.
Did I have any interest in buying Adam Dunn?
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No, not really. Lots to like, but I already have enough sluggers who can’t field. Besides, I’m not sure I could embrace a player whose nickname is “Big Donkey.”
Orlando Hudson?
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Again, I already have a second baseman so what would be the point? It would be like buying two shower curtains even though I only have one shower.
Orlando Cabrera?
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Talk about a surplus. The Yankees have two Gold Glove shortstops, even though one of them plays third base. No sense splurging on another one.
Ken Griffey Jr?
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I overheard the saleslady say he’s being shipped to the Seattle store.
Frank Thomas?
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Not a chance. The Big Hurt nearly ran me over with his Bentley when I was in Toronto for the book. All I wanted was five minutes. Sheesh.
Garret Anderson?
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Damaged goods. I’m still having flashbacks of his pink eye during the ’07 ALDS. For all I know, he could bring that conjunctivitis to the Bronx with him.
I didn’t even bother looking at Manny (too expensive and hard to maintain) and I-Rod (been there, done that). I did experience a pang of regret as I lingered over Abreu. How could the Yankees not want to bring back El Comeduce, which is Spanish for “the candy eater?” I was tempted to buy him anyway and let the Yankees return him, but the Free Agent Store had a no-returns policy.
I was feeling a little down as I strolled through the aisles, wondering if there were any bargains worth getting excited about, when I came upon Ty Wigginton.
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“Wiggy.” Hmm. The Yankees already have a third baseman, obviously, but what about a utility man? Would Cody Ransom be filling that need? Or was there an opening for someone else?
I leaned closer to examine the merchandise. According to Ty’s tags, he actually delivered his own baby when his wife went into labor unexpectedly. They were at home and he called 911 and the dispatcher talked him through the procedure, which he pulled off in a bedroom closet! He even tied the baby’s umbilical cord with his shoelaces! Now if that isn’t resourceful, I don’t know what is. Imagine what he could do for the Yanks in a pinch.
“I’ll take him,” I told the saleslady. “Wrap him up and deliver him to Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York, 10451.”
“Would you like a gift card?” she asked.
“Oh, just scribble something on his forehead,” I said. “How about: ‘For Joe Girardi, a little insurance. Best wishes, She-Fan.'”

Take a Seat, Robbie

Is there anyone on the planet who DOESN’T think Girardi should have benched Cano before today for lack of hustle? What good does it do to discipline him with 13 games to go? So he’ll be motivated for next year? So he’ll show other teams he’s trade worthy? So Girardi can prove to Hank, Hal and Cash that he really is about fundamentals and preparedness and isn’t an impostor? Wasn’t the big headline in spring training about how Joe had all his players – even the veterans – running drills until they dropped? What happened to that sense that he would instill new vigor in the team?

I went to see the Yankees in Anaheim during their last series against the Angels, and (I’m cringing as I write this) I was impressed by the Angels’ hustle. Those guys bust it running down the line to first. They bust it in the field. They bust it in everything they do. (Well, except for Garret Anderson who may be busting it but often looks like he’s just out for some fresh air.) If Torre was too much of a father figure, then Girardi is too much of a brother figure. The Yankees don’t need a brother. They need a manager. I’m hoping Girardi will grow into the job.