With way too much time on my hands this off-day, I let my mind drift. That’s what vacations are for, right? Anyhow, I started to imagine all the excellent things that could happen during Friday night’s series opener against the White Sox. Here are a few.
As I’ve made clear on this blog many times, I’ve always thought this Yankee was God.
In fact, whenever he saves a game, as he did in tonight’s 6-4 win over the White Sox, I usually picture him this way.
But now along comes Ozzie Guillen, who spoke after the game in glowing terms of the Yankees captain, according to this MLB article. He said of Jeter:
“He is God.”
And Ozzie isn’t wrong. Jeet did have four RBIs, including a homer and a triple, and broke his tie with Junior Griffey for the most hits among active players. Not too shabby. But is he God and not Mo? Here’s more of what Ozzie said about Derek:
“The guy always has good-looking women around him too. I mean, God bless him.”
Now wait a second. How can Jeter be God if God is blessing him? I’m very confused. But here’s what I’m perfectly clear about — tonight’s win was a beautiful thing. Andy didn’t have it, but he didn’t fall apart either, and Aceves, Marte, Joba and Mo did the rest. Winning teams are all about somebody stepping up when needed. Tonight, we had several somebodys…and at least two Gods.
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…
…but to praise him.
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.
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.
Yes, our guys were on fire today, but his White Sox looked like a team on the skids.
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?
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?
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.
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.
Well, today I’d be smiling.
The Yankees beat the Astros 4-1, complete with sparkling outings by Wang, Coke, Albaladejo, even Bombko.
But what sort of a manager would I be once the season starts? It’s not so easy managing in New York, where the owners and fans are just a tiny bit demanding, so the first thing I’d do is find a quiet place in the clubhouse and ask for divine intervention.
And then I’d put together a lineup for Opening Day.
* Damon (LF)
* Jeter (SS)
* Teixeira (1B)
* Posada (C)
* Matsui (DH)
* Nady (RF))
* Cano (2B)
* Ransom (3B)
* Gardner (CF)
* (Starting pitcher: Sabathia)
Judging by how I watch games at home, I’d be an intense manager, second guessing every move I made and asking everybody on the bench for their opinion.
And given how I yell at the TV whenever something doesn’t go the Yankees’ way, I’m sure I’d storm onto the field after every bad call and have it out with the umpires.
In general, I would run a very tight ship with punishments doled out for insolent behavior.
For example, I would insist that players not only know how to bunt, but DO IT when I tell them to. If I give the signs for a steal, they need to get a good jump and make it happen. When I signal for a hit and run, the batter better not strike out. If bases are loaded, I never ever want to see anybody swing at the first pitch, look at a called third strike, hit into a double play, or pop the ball up. And I would defy a player to get caught in a rundown, forget how many outs there are or commit some other heinous act.
Consequences for the above would include:
None of these for a week.
None of this, not even if they begged.
None of this stuff (and no plain old spitting for the hell of it, either).
None of these before or after a game.
And no talking. (I bet Chatty Cathy Nick Swisher would have the hardest time with that.)
What would probably happen is that Jeter would gather the players together behind my back and they would all vent about how much they hated me and Cashman would call me into his office and fire me.
I think I’ll forget about managing and stick with the blogging. What about you? Do you think you could manage a team? And if so, what sort of manager would you be?
A warm and fuzzy type like him?
Or a demonstrative, slightly deranged guy like him?
The choice is up to you…..
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?