Actually, what the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim demonstrated tonight against the Red Sox was too-small ball. They couldn’t catch the ball (I’m talking about you, Mr. Blinded-by-the-Lights, Gary Matthews Jr). They couldn’t hit the ball (I’m talking about you, Mr. 0-for-4, Chone Figgins). And they couldn’t run the bases (I’m talking about YOU, Mr. I-Should-Have-Been-Lifted-for-a-Pinch-Runner, Vladie Guerrero).
That’s what I’m wondering after reading that the Yankees have added Andruw Jones to their list of possible right-handed hitters to play this year’s version of Marcus Thames.
My first thought was why didn’t we just re-sign Thames? Because he can’t field the ball in the outfield? Neither can the other names that have been bandied about: Manny Ramirez and Vlad Guerrero. Would any of these guys settle for a role on the bench? And even if they would and their price tags weren’t too high, would I want them?
What I want, for the 150th time, is a starting pitcher whose name is Andy Pettitte, plus another guy whose name is Felix Hernandez. Is that too much to ask? Here’s what I’m offering Brian Cashman if he can make just one of those options happen:
* The chocolate cake I baked for my friend Rhonda’s Thanksgiving.
* The chicken and barley stew I cooked for Michael the other night.
* The bottle of Syrah that was served at the New Year’s Eve party I went to.
OK, clearly those aren’t that enticing. I need to step it up. How about:
* My Porsche Boxster S. It’s old but it’s still a beauty.
* My book collection. Romantic novels might not be Cash’s thing, but so what.
* My TVs. Sure he already has some, but who doesn’t need more TVs?
* My husband. Yes, I’d miss Michael, but sacrifices are what being a fan is all about.
I’m bored with all of that. If I have to read one more article about the brilliance we can expect from the Texas Rangers tomorrow night, I’ll scream.
There’s only one way to judge the opposition’s capabilities and that’s by listening to their hitters’ walk-up music. Seriously. Take a second so you can hear what the Rangers picked to pump them up.
OK, let’s start with Elvis Andrus’ pick: “Say Aah.” That song wouldn’t motivate anybody to get a hit. It would send me right to the doctor for a checkup.
Michael Young’s choice of “Sabotage” would be appropriate – if he wanted to strike out with the bases loaded.
I find it hard to believe that Ian Kinsler steps in to Ram Jam’s “Black Betty.” I mean hasn’t he heard that the song is used at Yankee Stadium when we’re about to send a pitcher to the showers?
I don’t know what to say about Nelson Cruz’s “Prrrum” except the word sounds an awful lot like “broom.”
Josh Hamilton’s music is about Jesus, which must be inspirational for him. And the translation of Vladdie’s “Traigo Fuego” is “I bring fire,” which is cool. And I guess Justin Smoak’s “Backwoods” works in a “Deliverance” sort of way.
(Note: As my friend Drew at the My Pinstripes blog pointed out, Smoak is with the Mariners now. I kept him in there because I liked the “Deliverance” reference. Couldn’t help myself.)
Well, there you have it – my assessment of the Rangers and their tunes. Yeah, I’m nervous about this series. I’ve been itching for it to start and now my stomach is in a knot. The good news is that CC – our ace, our rock, our horse, our whatever-you-want-to-call-him – will be on the mound. Oh, and there’s the fact that we’re the New York Yankees, the reigning World Champions. No small thing.
P.S. Only a few more hours to weigh in on the Crumbs Yankees cupcakes contest. If you haven’t done it yet, do it right here!
But where, exactly, IS Arlington? Yes, I’m aware that it’s in Texas, but where? I figured I’d better check since our boys will be flying there.
OK, so it’s not in the Panhandle. And it’s not near the Mexican border. It’s not even in the vicinity of Austin or Houston or El Paso. It’s kind of close to Texarkana, which is an actual place not a country-and-western song, and is, therefore, practically in Arkansas, home of Cliff Lee, as well as A.J. and Moseley. What’s it like in Arlington? According to Wikipedia…
Arlington is a city in Tarrant County, Texas within the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, the seventh-largest city in Texas and the 49th largest city in the United States.
OK, so it’s not that small, and our Yankees will find plenty of places where they can amuse themselves.
Located approximately 12 miles (19 km) east of downtown Fort Worth and 20 miles (32 km) west of downtown Dallas, Arlington is home to the Texas Rangers’ Ballpark in Arlington, Cowboys Stadium, the International Bowling Campus (which houses the United States Bowling Congress, International Bowling Museum and the International Bowling Hall of Fame), the headquarters for American Mensa, and the theme parks Six Flags Over Texas (the original Six Flags).
Cool. They can go bowling if they need to get away from it all, not to mention hop on a roller coaster.
According to the American Lung Association, Dallas has the 12th highest air pollution among U.S. cities. Much of the air pollution in Dallas and the surrounding area comes from a hazardous materials incineration plant in the small town of Midlothian and from concrete installations in neighbouring Ellis County.
Uh-oh. So they won’t be able to breathe. And the last thing CC needs before he makes his start on Friday night is to be exposed to hazardous materials. He’ll have enough trouble staying away from the BBQ joints. But the real hazard, as far as I’m concerned, is Lee and we don’t have to worry about him for awhile. I was hoping we’d play the Rays and we’re not. So we’ll have to get used to the following:
* Relentless close-ups of Nolan Ryan.
* Vlad Guerrero swinging at balls on the ground, in the air, off the top of his head.
* Replays of Josh Hamilton winning the Home Run Derby.
* Neftali Feliz’s “cheddar,” as David Wells and Dennis Eckersley dubbed his fastball.
The Rangers are an excellent team and I congratulate them for winning their series. But just like the highly anticipated new FOX show “Lone Star,” they should prepare to be cancelled after just a few episodes.
P.S. Now that our opponent is known, it’s a good time to enter the Crumbs cupcakes contest or amend your predictions. Click here for details. The deadline for entering is Thursday at midnight, PT.
Since the Yankees didn’t fly home from Minny until today, I took the opportunity to spend a little quality time with CC’s wife Amber. She met me at our usual spot, a cafeteria near Newark Airport, and we chatted about the Yankees, her husband, my husband, and, of course, the upcoming ALCS. She hasn’t changed that much since I first spoke to her during the off-season when CC was still deciding whether to sign with the Yankees.
OK, yes she has. She’s changed a lot. Moving to New York has turned her into a different person.
But she’s still very entertaining company, and she didn’t hesitate to share, which is crucial when it comes to girlfriends. Here’s an excerpt from our afternoon together. It sounded to me as if CC, like any successful pitcher, has a plan for facing the Angels.
Oh, Vlad. What happened to you? You used to be so trim and athletic when you were with Montreal.
Then you moved to the Angels and fell for their nachos with cheese, I guess. Now look at you. So porky.
What’s more, you made such a bonehead move, trying to go to third on Hunter’s pop-up. Haven’t you ever seen THIS?
That’s what your coach was telling you to do if you’d bothered to look. Oh, well. The rally monkey doesn’t really have magical powers, does it.
Yes, of course I grudgingly tip my cap to Jon Lester for an outstanding performance. And to Manny Ramirez Jason Bay for driving in those handy runs.
Speaking of Jason, there’s one more thing I’d like to get off my chest tonight. In TBS’s pre-game coverage of Dodgers-Cubs, Dennis Eckersley said on national TV that Manny was a “bad guy” and Bay was a “good guy.” Is that was a color commentator is supposed to do before a major league baseball playoff game? Engage in character assassination?
It’s true that Manny shoved the Red Sox’s traveling secretary and slapped Youkilis in the dugout (or maybe I have these backwards and he shoved Youkilis and slapped the traveling secretary). And far be it from me to stick up for even a former Red Sock. But maybe, Dennis, you shouldn’t be throwing stones. I seem to remember you had “issues” of your own.
And so we move on to Day 2 of the division series tomorrow after the Phillies, Dodgers and Red Sox won their games today. Will the Rays handle the White Sox or vice versa? Honestly? I just wish the Yankees were in it.