‘Twas An Apple Christmas
And I’m not talking about this kind.
I live in a Mac household and Santa usually brings me some assortment of accessories for my MacBook Pro, my iPhone or my iPod. Like the nifty dock below that allows me to play music through my stereo speakers.
I went to our local Apple store this afternoon to add to my loot and the place was mobbed. People weren’t just exchanging gifts either; the line for getting new stuff trailed all the way around the store. But instead of total chaos, there was customer service help everywhere you turned – bright-eyed men and women wearing red shirts and earpieces who not only wanted to answer questions but actually knew the answers. This is all my long-winded way of saying I think Steve Jobs is a genius who could probably make me buy anything he’s selling.
What does this have to do with baseball? Stay with me.
I have no idea if Jobs is a fan of sports in general or baseball in particular, but I can’t help wondering what a guy with his intelligence, marketing savvy and bank account would do with a major league team. I’ll tell you what he wouldn’t do if he owned the Yankees; he wouldn’t start the season with a rotation of CC, AJ, Hughes, Nova and Mitre. Nope. He’d engineer some sort of big signing – keeping his plan secret and then announcing the deal at a news conference that would whip the media into a frenzy. “Yankees Rotation Version 2011” is what he’d call it and then he’d list all the reasons why it represented a much improved formula.
I’m not saying the Yankees won’t still go out and get a pitcher before the season starts or that we’re not okay with the arms we already have (Mitre excluded). Maybe our new pitching coach will have a sensational session with AJ this week or whenever they’re meeting up. Maybe Pettitte will decide to come back for another year. And maybe Ivan Nova is the next King Felix.
A girl can hope. That’s what the holiday season is all about, isn’t it?
Johnny Depp Or Joba Chamberlain?
It was a day filled with tough decisions.
I was supposed to be at a screening of the new Johnny Depp movie, “Public Enemies,” at 11 a.m. But how could I leave the house when Roger Federer and Andy Roddick were locked in a tremendous battle for the Wimbledon men’s title, with Federer finally winning?
And what about the third game in the Yankees’ July 4th holiday series against the Blue Jays? I wanted to stay home and watch that too. But I figured I could record it and see it later. So I passed up Joba and chose Depp.
It was kind of fun to take a break from baseball on a sunny summer day and sit in a darkened theater. As for the movie? Depp stars as Depression-era bank robber/gangster John Dillinger, and he’s fantastic. If he doesn’t get an Oscar nomination, I’ll be shocked. The shoot-outs are unnecessarily long, but the cinematography is gorgeous – a must-see unless you faint at the sight of blood. Here’s the trailer.
After the movie, I had another decision to make. I’d been thinking about getting a “smart phone” and couldn’t choose between a BlackBerry or an iPhone, having heard about the pros and cons of both. But after an hour at Best Buy, I finally went home with this.
Of course, I have no clue how to use it, but there was no time to figure it out. I had to get home to see the Yanks.
I settled into a chair and watched the replay. I was hoping for a strong outing from Joba, given the weary bullpen, but was disappointed when I saw this.
Yeah, he was putrid. I mean, stinkin’. Throwing 86 pitches in just three-plus innings – and giving up nine hits and eight runs (Cody Ransom’s error aside) – doesn’t cut it. But what really bothered me were his comments after the game – a bloated, endless contest that resulted in the Yankees’ 10-8 come-from-behind win.
“That’s actually the best I’ve felt all year,” he said, according to the Daily News. “But they have a great lineup.”
Huh? Sure, the Blue Jays are a good team and a tough division rival. But did he not notice that his pitch counts were atrocious and his command not exactly sharp? He’s become a nibbler, and it’s as if he’s traded places with Phil Hughes, who used to nibble but now attacks the strike zone. Hmm.
Luckily, the Yanks had their bats in gear. Jeter had four hits, including a go-ahead two-run shot in the fifth.
Posada and Matsui were hitting stars too, and Cano, who’d been dropped down to seventh in the order, produced as long as nobody was on base. (Calling Dr. Phil?)
But the star of the game had to be Alfredo Aceves, who pitched four innings of scoreless relief. What an asset he’s turned out to be.
Taking three straight from the Jays is major. Do the Yanks have one more “W” in this series for a sweep? It would be sweet.