Some Hank Steinbrenner musings

There's no crying tying in baseball!!!
Proctor going under the knife

I know I touched upon Hank Steinbrenner’s recent comments yesterday morning, but there were a few good comments. As I was in the land of our enemies this weekend, I didn’t get a chance to respond to one I found particularly interesting.

Mustang, one of the RAB regulars, had this to say in response to my writing “George Steinbrenner, he is not” about Hank:

Take it from me. Hank is George the sequel. Most of you did not have the “joy” of living with the early years of George Michael Steinbrenner III. George managed the same kind of reaction that Hank does and the media loved to hate him for it. For what it’s worth if Hank can lead the Yankees to 10 pennants and six World Series titles I don’t care what he does.

Mustang brings up two valid points, but I think the analysis is slightly off target. In a way, Hank is very much like his father. He says stupid stuff that the media laps up and regurgitates in a way designed to sell papers. In the parlance of the industry, Hank makes for great copy.

But there is a very substantial difference between Hank Steinbrenner and George Steinbrenner: When George would talk, things happened. George’s words, especially during his 1970s and 1980s heydays, weren’t bluster. When he threatened to fire his manager, he would fire his manager. When he threatened to make the biggest splash possible, he went out and made the biggest splash possible.

Hank, on the other hand, isn’t nearly as imposing as his dad. When Hank rants about Johan Santana or his “piss-ant employees,” absolutely nothing happens. When Hank rails on staying the course one day and trading the farm to do whatever it takes to win the next, nothing in the Yankee front office changes. Hal Steinbrenner comes work; Brian Cashman comes to work; and no one cowers in fear. Whereas George came off an egomaniac bent on doing whatever he thought necessary to run the team, Hank just sounds like a child throwing a tantrum. He can make all the noise he wants, but in the end, as the Rolling Stones once said, he can’t always get what he wants.

I’ll stand by what I said yesterday: Until Hank’s words translate into the same kind of rash, irrational actions that became a hallmark George Steinbrenner, his father Hanks is not.

Now, if as Mustang says, the Yanks win 10 pennants and six World Series while Hank is the team’s co-chairperson in charge of stupid comments, none of us are going to complain. We’ll just keep on ignoring him and enjoy the winning.

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There's no crying tying in baseball!!!
Proctor going under the knife
  • Chip

    That’s just creepy, I was just listening to that exact Rolling Stones song as I read your article. Seeing that, I can’t argue with you at all :)

  • dan

    “We’ll just keep on ignoring him and enjoy the winning.”

    Ignoring Mustang or Hank?

    j/k

    • mustang

      Maybe both.
      LOL

  • Accent Shallow

    So when Phil Hughes is traded for a middling middle reliever during the Winter Meetings, how long is the thread here going to be?

    (Seriously, if Hank was George part deux, can you imagine the quotes we’d have gotten about Hughes, Kennedy, Cano and Melky this year?)

    • dan

      They’d all be on the Pirates right now.

    • Yank Crank 20

      I imagine if Hank actually had the outright power to ignore Cash and Hal and make a stupid trade with Phil Hughes, than Cashman would not have come back. It seems to be a Hal and Cash on the top of the decision making and Hank staying put in Tampa and feeding the beat writers a bunch of crap.

      I wouldn’t worry too much, Hank doesn’t have the authority that George had to just tell someone to make a deal whether it was intelligent or not.

  • Phil McCracken

    George also didn’t have a frugal brother looking over his shoulder. I’m sure if Hal wasn’t in the picture, Hank would have traded for Johan last year.

  • Steve

    I’m torn about Hank. On the one hand he says incredibly foolish and occasionally stupid things, but on the other hand we both share an affection for the NY Yanks and Jennifer Love Hewitt.

    http://www.tvpredictions.com/j.....hewitt.jpg

    Your welcome.

    • Yank Crank 20

      My god, where has she been?? Why does A-Rod run around with Madonna when there are J-Love’s out there?

  • steve (different one)

    Now, if as Mustang says, the Yanks win 10 pennants and six World Series while Hank is the team’s co-chairperson in charge of stupid comments, none of us are going to complain.

    this statement is incredibly misleading.

    the ONLY reason the Yankees were able to win 4 of those World Series and 6 of those pennants was because George was suspended from baseball in the early 90’s allowing the baseball people to lay the foundation for a championship team.

    i don’t think it happens if George isn’t suspended.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      My statement isn’t incredibly misleading. No one will complain about Hank’s comments if the Yanks win, and no one should complain now because he’s not George Steinbrenner. Nothing about that is incredibly misleading, and it has nothing to do with George’s suspension. Hank just cannot impact team direction as George did.

      • steve (different one)

        i guess i grabbed the wrong quote. i guess i was responding more to what mustang said here:

        For what it’s worth if Hank can lead the Yankees to 10 pennants and six World Series titles I don’t care what he does.

        i stand by my “absurd” statement that this is misleading.

        this statement implies that George lead the Yankees to 10 pennants and six World Series. he didn’t.

        the Yankees won most of those titles as a direct result of George Steinbrenner being FORCIBLY removed from a position of authority with the New York Yankees. for a long time, George did WAY more harm than good.

        now, i understand the point of this post, and i (mostly) agree. as long as Hank is all talk, the yankees will be fine, and if they win, who cares if Hank runs his mouth?? i am fine with that.

        but i tend to disagree that Hank is as harmless as you guys think. he announced every stage of both the Johan negotiations as well as Mariano’s extension through the press. how does that help Cashman do his job? there have been reports (take them for what they are worth, as i think they came from Heyman) that it was Hank who gave Posada the 4th year on his deal, and it was Hank who was the primary “negotiator” with A-Rod.

        maybe he will be reigned in this offseason, but it’s not impossible that his big mouth could cost the Yankees.

        • mustang

          “the Yankees won most of those titles as a direct result of George Steinbrenner being FORCIBLY removed from a position of authority with the New York Yankees”

          I understand your point, but George did bank roll this team during and after his suspension. And if you think that George did not have his hands on the Yankees during his suspension then I have bridge to sale you.
          George learned from his mistakes and let his baseball people run the team.

        • mustang

          ” i tend to disagree that Hank is as harmless as you guys think. he announced every stage of both the Johan negotiations as well as Mariano’s extension through the press. how does that help Cashman do his job?”

          I agree totally.

  • Bo

    If Hank had any power in the organization, Santana would be a Yankee.

    And the reason the press loves quoting him and calling him is because they are all trying to relive the late 70’s and pray that he is George. When it is obvious he’s not.

    • http://www.workwithpete.com Pete

      Exactly. And any missteps that the organization takes will automatically be attributed to him — at least in people’s minds, that is.

      And by ‘people’ I mean anyone who likes to poke fun at the team.

  • 1996 Yankee Alumni Society

    The fact that Cashman is still the GM is Exhibit A that Hank is totally unlike his dad. (so Manny will probably not be in pinstripes next season).

  • ortforshort

    We’ll see this winter. The Yankees have been reluctant to spend on the big free agents since George has faded into the background. Its irrelevent to me whether that’s because of Hank, Hal or Cashman or all three. They’ve been re-signing their own guys, which, at least is a sign that they’ve got some sense, but they need to pull the trigger on bringing big guys in. This group has missed out on Dice-K, Beltran and Guerrero in recent years and we see the result – we can’t even make the playoffs. If these guys miss the boat this winter on Teixeira and Sabbathia, then we know where this is all headed.

    • steve (different one)

      The Yankees have been reluctant to spend on the big free agents since George has faded into the background….This group has missed out on Dice-K, Beltran and Guerrero in recent years and we see the result – we can’t even make the playoffs.

      this is a strange example to prove your point.

      the Yankees missed out on Beltran and Guerrero SPECIFICALLY because George interfered.

      if he HAD faded into the background at that point, there is a BETTER chance those two guys would be in pinstripes.

      • 27 this year

        yea, Guerrero was ready to sign with teh Yanks but George wanted Sheff. Beltran was givign the Yanks a discount but George stopped them.

        • http://www.workwithpete.com Pete

          FWIW I never heard a big movement to go and sign Beltran. Everyone who talked about it said the guy was ‘moody’, ‘selfish’, not a great ‘team player’ …

          Of course, a lot of these same people work for WFAN, who now love him because he wears a Mets uni. :P

  • mustang

    First, thank you for posting my comment on a thread.
    I see your point on Hank, but this was his first year as co-owner lets see how things work out this winter. Regardless I’m sure it will be entertaining.

  • ortforshort

    George putting the kibosh on Guerrero and Beltran seems pretty odd behavior for him. I wonder if George was really still running things when that happened? Was there a reason given for George not doing what he always did at the time?