Mar
09

Rosenthal 1, O’Connor 0

By

Ken Rosenthal has a new short column up at FoxSports — more like a blog post, really. The title: “Yankees are not better off without A-Rod.” As one might expect, he says just that and then elaborates using facts, like the Yanks ranking seventh in the AL in runs scored last season. They then lost Jason Giambi and Bobby Abreu, who are replaced by Teixeira and the hope that Robinson Cano, Hideki Matsui, Jorge Posada, and Nick Swisher rebound from disappointing 2008 seasons. All in all, a reasonable, if not completely obvious, thought by Rosenthal.

The column is so obvious, in fact, that it seems like Rosenthal is addressing someone in particular. Who actually thinks that the Yankees are better off with Cody Ransom than A-Rod? No one I know, and I talk to plenty of people who hate A-Rod. Oh, wait, whats this? A column in the Bergen Record titled “Better off without A-Rod?” written by Ian O’Connor (who also happens to contribute to FoxSports). I believe this is the target of Rosenthal’s ire.

O’Connor’s column is chock full o’ A-Rod haterade. For example:

The Yankees could go back to being the Yankees. They could go back to being the team that won four championships in five years with reliable pitching and a harmonious band of position players that didn’t need a slugger whose favorite teammates are Me, Myself and I.

You hear that? Cody Ransom doesn’t need above-average stats to help the Yankees. He just needs to be harmonious. And gritty and a grinder and all those other awesome baseball terms.

This is, of course, patently ridiculous. The dynasty teams that many in the media pine for were built differently. You can’t just replicate that, or else everyone else would do it. The Yankees might have gotten by with lesser third basemen than A-Rod in the past, but those teams were assembled differently. The Yanks had a superstar center fielder. They had Derek Jeter, Chuck Knoblauch, and Jorge Posada at premium defensive positions. They weren’t a team with so many question marks from so many important players.

The Yankees can certainly survive without A-Rod, especially if it’s for a relatively short stretch. But by no means are they better off without him. Writers spew platitudes every day about team chemistry, but it really comes down to production. The Yankees offense is less productive without A-Rod. He’ll certainly provide them a boost when he returns in late April or May.

Bonus quote from O’Connor

But facts are facts: The Yankees haven’t reached the World Series in Rodriguez’s five seasons, and they reached six in the eight seasons before he arrived.

Coincidence, or guilty as charged?

In a world where correlation meant causation, I’d go with guilty as charged. Otherwise, I would not.

Categories : Rants
  • andrew

    I think this may be my favorite comment on the article:

    “Very insightful. I guess the Yankees really will be better off with Cody Ransom. Before I read this, I thought home runs, RBI and runs were important to winning.”

  • greg

    Hmm, with a-rod on the DL and ransom at 3rd, who will be the utility infielder? If it’s Berroa… who do they take off the 40 man?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      They can put A-Rod on the 60-day DL retroactively to this weekend, which would make him eligible to come off in early May. I didn’t know teams could put guys on the DL during the offseason, but the Braves just stuck Hudson on the 60 day DL last week. Maybe it’s only during ST or something.

      • http://statspeak.net dan

        You can put them on the DL after the rule VFive5 draft

      • steve (different one)

        do you think the Yankees would put him on the 60 day DL though?

        his recovery time is 6-9 weeks. that’s 42-63 days.

        if he is ready in 6-7 weeks, do you want him unavailable for those extra 2 weeks?

        it’s probably safe to assume that he’ll take closer to the 9 weeks than the 6 weeks, but A-Rod is so valuable that i’m pretty sure you want him back the MINUTE he is ready to go.

        but then you have to cut someone. it’s a tough call.

        i don’t have the answer.

        • Chris C.

          “if he is ready in 6-7 weeks, do you want him unavailable for those extra 2 weeks?”

          I want him to be fully healed when he returns, because he is one of the most annoying atheletes on the planet, and he’ll be around for 9 more years. His only redeeming value is production, so the last thing you want is this guy spending the rest of his career hobbling around with a chronic hip injury, because the Yankees tried the express rehab program.

          “it’s probably safe to assume that he’ll take closer to the 9 weeks than the 6 weeks, but A-Rod is so valuable that i’m pretty sure you want him back the MINUTE he is ready to go.”

          Oh, absolutely! Because the Yankee organization simply can’t wake up in the morning without him!
          Geez, the Yankees have probably the best pitching staff from top to bottom in baseball, and everybody’s acting like this is the most significant happening since the fall of the Roman Empire.

          The Yankees will be just fine without him. Better? No. But they’ll be just fine.

          • steve (different one)

            thank you for adding nothing at all to what was an honest question.

            so the Yankees should make their roster decisions b/c Chris C. finds A-Rod “annoying” and sarcastically questions whether or not the Yankees can survive without him.

            God forbid the Yankees would want their best player on the field.

            way to construct a strawman – “losing A-Rod is the fall of the Roman Empire” – and then knock it down.

            • Chris C.

              “so the Yankees should make their roster decisions b/c Chris C. finds A-Rod “annoying” and sarcastically questions whether or not the Yankees can survive without him.”

              That is clearly not what I said.
              The Yankees should make their roster decisions based on what’s good for the long term health of the organization and the player involved. Where they are in the standings during week 7 of AROD’s recover period should not result in a consideration of rushing him back.

              “God forbid the Yankees would want their best player on the field.”

              Of course they do, but the Yankees are an organization that can absorb and relent through any ONE person getting injured. Or at least they should be able to do that.

              How’d you like to be a Cardinal fan, and lose Albert Pujols for two months?
              THAT would be a nightmare.

              • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                In the interest of sanity, let me point out something from steve’s original post. Emphasis is mine.

                do you think the Yankees would put him on the 60 day DL though?
                his recovery time is 6-9 weeks. that’s 42-63 days.
                if he is ready in 6-7 weeks, do you want him unavailable for those extra 2 weeks?
                it’s probably safe to assume that he’ll take closer to the 9 weeks than the 6 weeks, but A-Rod is so valuable that i’m pretty sure you want him back the MINUTE he is ready to go.

                Chris, you’re ignoring the central part of steve’s hypothetical: What if ARod is healthy, and thus, there’s no “long term health risk” and no “rushing him back” involved – he’s just good to go in 42 days and not 60. Given the possibility of that scenario, doesn’t it merit considering not putting him on the 60-day DL? Because we’d have a player who is healthy, in shape, ready to mash, but we wouldn’t be able to play him because he’d still be obligated to spend another 18 days on the DL.

                • Chris C.

                  Fair enough.

                  But since we’re talking about a guy signed for 10 years at around 28 mill per year, I’d probably find out when he’s absolutely healthy, then give him another 2-3 weeks off.

                  “The minute he’s ready to go” just has this rush-job tone to it. But if I misunderstood, I certainly apologize.

                • steve (different one)

                  yeah, i’m just asking if you want a 100% healthy A-Rod sitting on the DL simply b/c of the rules around the roster moves you made.

                  that’s all.

                  no problem.

                • steve (different one)

                  and FWIW, the surgery supposedly went well according to Sweeney Murti

                • Chris C.

                  “and FWIW, the surgery supposedly went well according to Sweeney Murti”

                  They all do, supposedely.
                  I have never heard any sports organization release this news: “The surgery today went so poorly, that this poor guy will be out for 5 years, if he is even able to walk again at all!”

    • anonymous

      It wont be Berroa. The utility man has to at least be able to field the ball.

    • A.D.

      Berroa is playing himself off the team, outside his batting yesterday.

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

    If only A-Rod had the same level of “intangible grace” as Jeter. Then, Ian O’Connor would be happy.

    • Chris C.

      “If only A-Rod had the same level of “intangible grace” as Jeter. Then, Ian O’Connor would be happy.”

      Right……when talking about AROD, we must always be sure to toss in a bash on Derek Jeter’s behavior and demeanor.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Chris, Ben wasn’t tossing in “a bash on Derek Jeter’s behavior and demeanor”.

        He was tossing in a bash on how the sycophantic, intellectually lazy media constantly slobs Jeter’s nob to the point that it not only annoys fans of other teams, it annoys rational Yankees fans as well.

        I love Derek Jeter and think he’s a great shortstop and a lock first ballot Hall of Famer. But no, Jeter does not walk on water, Jeter did not win 4 rings all by himself with his sheer will and quiet intangibles and hustley gritty gamerdom, Jeter is not the greatest leader or teammate ever, Jeter did not invent the question mark.

        It is possible to like and respect Derek Jeter while taking serious issue with the way many members of the media blow shit way out of proportion to make everything he does the most awesomest thing in the history of baseball and make everything ARod does in comparison the sad failures of an evil baby-raper.

        • Chris C.

          I love Derek Jeter and think he’s a great shortstop and a lock first ballot Hall of Famer. But no, Jeter does not walk on water, Jeter did not win 4 rings all by himself with his sheer will and quiet intangibles and hustley gritty gamerdom, Jeter is not the greatest leader or teammate ever, Jeter did not invent the question mark.

          Yes, I am aware of all this, Tommy.
          I read it in AROD’s GQ interview, which just happened to hit the streets after AROD cashed in, and Jeter was negotiating his deal.
          And that’s actually a situation where the media DIDN’T exagerate what a shitty thing that is to do to someone.
          And it was all right there in print, so there were no “context” issues.

          AROD brings most of this nonsense on himself. Jeter invites none of it. He is not out there forcing people to write articles about what a classy individual he is.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            I’m not talking about one GQ article and you know it.

            Massive forests have been chopped down to create reams and reams of newsprint used by dozens and dozens of idiotic writers and pseudo-journalists to write thousands and thousands of patently ridiculous articles about Derek Jeter being the best thing since sliced bread and being the very personification of winning itself. All of them are useless treacle and worthy of ridicule. The stupid “Derek Jeter is Captain Intangibles and nary a negative word should be spoken about him” meme existed long before ARod was a thorn in anybody’s side.

            Ian O’Connor is saying that losing a guy who has been one of the three or four best baseball players on the planet the past two decades would be a good thing, because he doesn’t have the “intangibles” or the “grace” or the “demeanor” of Derek “Prince of Peace” Jeter. His evidence that ARod is a burden and Jeter is a singular blessing from heaven is that Jeter won rings (on a stacked Yankees team) and ARod hasn’t (on a much less stacked Yankees team)

            That’s ridiculous and worthy of mockery.

            • Chris C.

              ‘Massive forests have been chopped down to create reams and reams of newsprint used by dozens and dozens of idiotic writers and pseudo-journalists to write thousands and thousands of patently ridiculous articles about Derek Jeter being the best thing since sliced bread and being the very personification of winning itself. All of them are useless treacle and worthy of ridicule.”

              You know where alot of this stuff comes from? Jeter’s teammates and even opposing players. There is plenty of validity to Jeter being a WINNING type of ballplayer who’s complete value exceeds his actual production, and anyone who’s played any sport knows those types of players.
              And there are also players who are tremendously talented and productive whose value pretty much begins and ends with the stats they put up. And in some cases, are even detrimental to the team. I believe that’s AROD in some way.

              So while the media may stretch these things out a bit, these types of players do exist
              Again, I’m not saying I agree with O’Connor……..but to put Jeter’s positive attributes in quotations as if they don’t exist, or they’re fabricated by the media, is utter bullshit.
              Intangibles exist. They aren’t some made up thing just because people are sick of reading about them.

              • jeremy

                It was Esquire magazine by the way. And most, if not all of what Arod said in that interview was true.

                That’s not the point though. The point is that while Jeter possessess many of the qualities you lay out in your comment, the media, and the pink hat Yankees crowd have given them mythic, nay Biblical significance, in a game which is largely, if not exclusively won by what the players do on the field physically, and not what goes on in the clubhouse.

                When was the last time you heard this in a post game interview:

                Robbie Cano: “Well if it weren’t for Derek’s grit, his utter winniness, that flip on the game DP would probably have ended up in center field.”

                • Chris C.

                  “It was Esquire magazine by the way. And most, if not all of what Arod said in that interview was true.”

                  As a player, you don’t deflate another guy’s value while he’s negotiating a new contract. You just don’t do it. It’s wrong. And the fact that these two were buddies makes it even more ridiculous.

                  And it pretty much demonstrated, from that point on, that AROD had a tremendous self-confidence and jealousy problem.

                  “The point is that while Jeter possessess many of the qualities you lay out in your comment, the media, and the pink hat Yankees crowd have given them mythic, nay Biblical significance, in a game which is largely, if not exclusively won by what the players do on the field physically, and not what goes on in the clubhouse.”

                  Yes, this is exactly what I said. I named Jeters attributes, then remarked that the media stretches them out a bit. How is that any different than what you just typed, other than your use of words like “mythical” and “biblical”, which I suppose is your way of stretching out the media’s representation of Jeter.

                  “When was the last time you heard this in a post game interview:
                  Robbie Cano: “Well if it weren’t for Derek’s grit, his utter winniness, that flip on the game DP would probably have ended up in center field.”

                  Now I have no idea what you’re talking about. Having played the SS position myself in college, backing up the throw from Spencer and getting the guy at the plate was one of the most alert plays I’ve ever seen……and in a huge suituation as well.
                  If you’re trying now to belittle it to prove some point, than perhaps you’re just as bad as the media you’re whining about.

  • Rich

    Ian O’Connor is a beneficiary of Affirmative Action for idiots.

    • inman

      i agree. the guy consistently makes himself look like an ass. i dont know how alot of these guys get their jobs – nonetheless he is one of the top 3 idiots in my opinion.

      • Chris C.

        They get and keep their jobs by writing articles that people talk about.

        Why do you think Joe Morgan’s been in the ESPN booth for over 10 years? Certainly not becuase he’s been on the cutting edge of all the nuances of the game.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          And? Does the fact that lies and stupidity are interesting and generate readership and viewership mean that we should be satisfied with that and cease asking our newsgivers and content providers to be honest and intelligent?

          Is this a race to the bottom? Should we cancel Frontline because it doesn’t get the ratings of The Jerry Springer Show?

          • Chris C.

            “Is this a race to the bottom?”

            Yes……..The Charles Barkley rule.
            Remember when he said that Augusta lengthened the course to make it tougher on Tiger Woods?
            That pretty much opened up the floodgates for lies and stupidity to pour through.

  • kunaldo

    kruk is a moron…granted, we’re going to miss arod in the lineup, but he’s saying that we should count our blessings if we’re only 3-4 games out by the end of April…freakin clown

    • kunaldo

      hm, i guess this should have went in the open thread…my bad

  • John

    A 7 year old kid who loves the Yanks and wants to play for them one day would show more grit than Ransom if given the chance, so lets sign him as it would win us that championship.

    oh the media hatred/bias toward A-rod.

  • http://amonthoffundays.blogspot.com Phil in LA

    Ian O’Connor has the sanctimonious and stupid quinella going for him every day of the year. Maybe the self-righteous dimwit could have backtracked a little and looked into that “reliable pitching” of the championship years versus the Yankee teams ARod has been a part of.

    The salient fact, as even an average numbskull could determine by looking at league numbers, is the Yanks haven’t won crap since 1997 when they haven’t had a team era that was any lower than 3rd. The last time the Yanks had a team era that was 3rd or better was 2003 – the season before ARod arrived.

    • Memo

      Oh no no no no. It wasn’t pitching, those teams hugged their way to WS rings.

      These fools hyping this stupid “haven’t won since A-Rod arrived” are just embarrassing themselves.

  • Johnny

    I certainly don’t remember any all stars consistently performing well in the prime of their careers, much less 8 or 9 of them. This O’conor fella is quite the anylist, huh?

  • http://techdirt.com/ Mike M

    Speaking of correlation and causation… thought you guys might appreciate this:

    http://xkcd.com/552/

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Lovely.

  • pete

    good. god. I have yet to figure out any reason why a cody ransom strikeout could possibly be more valuable to the team than an a-rod home run.

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      When Cody Ransom strikes out, he makes the starter throw at least three pitches, thus raising his pitch count and getting him out of the game sooner. ARod’s homer only takes one pitch.

      Cody Ransom’s strikeout = unselfishly doing the little things it takes to win baseball games
      ARod’s homer = selfish stat-padding

  • Jim

    Quick Thought: Is it possible they move Miranda over to 3rd for the rest of spring training to see how he handles the position? He is a first baseman with pop and most first baseman can handle 3rd. If all works uou could platoon him with Ransom and play who ever is doing better.

    • steve (different one)

      Miranda is a terrible 1Bman, so i’m guessing he’d be historically bad at 3B.

      also, maybe we should start grouping dumb A-Rod articles into the “tabloid ban” no matter who writes them. it’s just pointless.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      Miranda throws left handed. He can’t play third.

    • Whozat

      Also, what gave you the idea that most 1bmen can handle 3b? If they could, they’d still be 3bmen.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Yeah, that statement didn’t make any sense.

        • steve (different one)

          60% of the time, it works all the time.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Steve, I’m not gonna lie to you, that smells like pure gasoline.

    • Chris C.

      “Quick Thought: Is it possible they move Miranda over to 3rd for the rest of spring training to see how he handles the position? He is a first baseman with pop and most first baseman can handle 3rd.”

      Wh-Wh-WHAAAAAAATTTT?????????

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph P.

        Thanks, Chris, for adding so much to the conversation there. Someone brought up a point, and others came in with constructive corrections. Yet you feel that even after the matter has been cleared up that you need to mock.

        • Chris C.

          “Someone brought up a point, and others came in with constructive corrections.”

          Hey, I just gave the South Park version of “yeah, that statement didn’t make any sense”.

          “Yet you feel that even after the matter has been cleared up that you need to mock”

          Oh, sorry…….didn’t realized it got cleared up. I must have missed the long list of 1st basemen who have successfully moved to 3rd and “handled” it.

  • Jim M.

    Any plans to liveblog A-Rod’s surgery?

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      While the doctors have ARod’s knee cut open, they should throw some steroids in there. Couldn’t hurt.

      • Chris C.

        I hear as soon as they opened the knee, they got hit in the face with some flowing HGH!

  • Jeremy

    I always enjoy seeing the “ARod is selfish, and selifsh players are bad for the team” line yet again. That is some fresh, provocative sports journalism.

    • steve (different one)

      A-Rod is a ballhog.

      whenever he fields a ball, he refuses to pass it to his 1Bman and insists on running across the diamond and dunking the ball on the 1B bag. it’s a little embarrassing.

      also, when he’s not batting, he refuses to block for his teammates.

      if there is one sport where “me-first” guys can’t help your team, it’s baseball. A-Rod should bunt more.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        ARod = T.O.

        • dontradecano

          ARod = TO, Allen Iverson, Michael Vick, (insert team destroyer here), baby killer combined

    • A.D.

      I love that people use that line, after all A-Rod refused to move positions when he was traded

      • Chris C.

        He agreed to move positions to GET TRADED. He did it because he was so freaking miserable in Texas, and the Boston deal fell apart because the union didn’t approve the paycut.

        That’s how miserable he was in Texas…….he was willing to leave money on the table to get out.

  • dontradecano

    “A trick the 2009 Yankees should be able to turn with Cody Ransom or some other potential Scott Brosius-to-be at third.”

    Brosius
    1994: 14hr 49 rbi .238 .289 .417
    1995: 17hr 46 rbi .262 .342 .452
    1996: 22hr 71 rbi .304 .393 .516

    why do people seem so shocked that brosius came here and produced?

    • steve (different one)

      1997: 11hr 41 rbi .203 .259 .317

      he came to NY in 1998, one year after having just about the worst season you can possibly have as a major leaguer.

      basically, everything single thing just went right for the Yankees in 1998. his career is so up and down that there is really no rhyme or reason to it.

      • dontradecano

        no his career is more like this:

        3 consistent years
        1 down year that ever player has
        4 more years similar to the other three

        not up and down by any stretch, and the yankees didnt have everything go right for them, Brosius was a pretty good player before he even got here.

        • steve (different one)

          OPS+
          1994 – 87
          1995 – 114
          1996 – 127
          1997 – 53
          1998 – 121
          1999 – 84
          2000 – 70
          2001 – 105

          no, nothing “up and down” about that…

  • UWS

    We need a nickname for people who write articles like O’Connor’s. An equivalent of B-Jobber. You guys need to get on this.

    • steve (different one)

      the nickname is “every single writer in the tri-state area”

      except Davidoff. check out his column today.

  • Bo

    The myth that the championship teams were built on role players and grit is false.

    They were built on great starting pitching. Great starting pitching means winning which means “grit”.

    key, duque, clemens, andy, wells, etc made Brosius etc great.

    • dontradecano

      and a bench of non-stars like Raines, Strawberry, Fielder, Boggs.

      What poor excuse for a bench. No Wilson Betemits or Bubba Crosbys anywhere.

      • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        They were built on great starting pitching, and a great bench of real stars, and a potent, deep, star-studded lineup of offensive sluggers.

        I’m sorry, but not only was our rotation of Cone-Pettitte-Hernandez-Wells/Clemens the envy of the league, but Bernie Williams, Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Tino Martinez, Chuck Knoblauch, and Paul O’Neill were all All-Star caliber offensive beasts. The fact that we didn’t have a guy who hit 40 homers with regularity is now somehow being misconstrued to say that we had no offensive studs, and that’s laughable.

        During the title years, Bernie Williams wOBA’d .397, .407, .423, .412, and .403. That 1998 mark was third in the entire AL, better than Jim Thome, Juan Gonzalez, Ken Griffey, Carlos Delgado, Manny Ramirez, Rafael Palmeiro, Nails Krzyzewski, etc. etc. all in their primes.

        We had a great lineup, a great bullpen, and a greater-than-great pitching staff.

        The title years Yankees had the best top-to-bottom 25 man roster in all of baseball in terms of talent and star power, hands down.

        • steve (different one)

          Bernie Williams – most underrated Yankee superstar in history?

          discuss.

          • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

            Bernie Williams: Most feared hitter of his era, or most feared hitter of all time?

            Discuss.

      • steve (different one)

        also, getting Strawberry was basically the equivalent of the Yankees signing Bonds last year.

        Strawberry was a former superstar who had fallen from grace after being suspended for drug abuse.

        he was a super talented player that had exhausted every other team by squandering his insane potential, and was basically freely available talent to anyone willing to take the risk. Gooden was signed the exact same way.

        people tend to forget that when they criticize the current team for not having bench players like that anymore. it’s not exactly a situation that presents itself very often. Borderline HoF talent, free for the taking.

        like i said, the only modern equivalent would be signing Bonds.

        • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          I’d love to know how many of the fans constantly calling for Cashman’s head for “failing to put together a good bench” were also vehemently against the potential signing of Bonds. I’d like to see that Venn Diagram of hypocrisy.

          Adding Barry to your bench for nothing but loose change = making your bench better

    • steve (different one)

      yup.

      great pitching and an incredibly rare convergence of young, Hall of Fame quality up the middle talent.

      people are always criticizing the Yankees for failing to replicate the “formula” of the mid-90’s, but what they don’t realize is how historically unique that period was.

      it was a once in a generation bumper crop of talent. 2 first ballot hall of famers (Mo, Jeter). 2 guys sitting right smack on the border of the Hall (Bernie, Jorge). and another guy who will fall short but who could finish with about 230 wins and could hang around on the ballot for a few years (Pettitte).

      you can’t just make that happen again.

      • Jeremy

        We also had a once-in-a-generation fan in Jeff Maier and a once-in-a-generation umpire in Rich Garcia.

      • Chris C.

        “it was a once in a generation bumper crop of talent. 2 first ballot hall of famers (Mo, Jeter). 2 guys sitting right smack on the border of the Hall (Bernie, Jorge). and another guy who will fall short but who could finish with about 230 wins and could hang around on the ballot for a few years (Pettitte).

        you can’t just make that happen again.”

        Yeah, especially if you don’t try. Do you really think the Yankees put a ton of effort into trying to duplicate that kind of talent from within from, say, 1996-2005?
        There aren’t alot of organizations out there that have gone through a 10 year period without adding a somewhat successful drafted starting pitcher to their staff.

        • steve (different one)

          there is no question that the Yankees squandered draft after draft under Lin Garrett’s tenure.

          replacing Garrett with D-Opp was a key turning point for the organization.

          you raise a very valid point, no doubt, but i would still caution people to not base their expectations on what happened in the mid-90’s.

          Mo/Jeter/Bernie/Jorge/Pettitte are just an unbelievably special group of players.

          • Chris C.

            I agree, Steve. But what annoys me is that the Yankees abandoned a systematic building process that had just netted them 4 championships, and went right back to the style that netted them overpaid teams and an eventual trip to the basement by 1989.

            I mean really, who was in the board room in 2001 saying “well guys, we had a great run under the direction of Gene Michael, and an assist from Bob Watson……..now I think it’s time we overpay for out-of-shape and aging steroid users, while draining our farm system. And our scouting department? Eh, give em’ a few years off! And a few years from now, I think we should bring in a horse farmer from Florida to hand out some really ridiculous contracts”.

            Did you honestly think that all this was in store for the Yankees starting the moment Luis Gonzalez looped that hit into left off Mo to end game 7?

            • steve (different one)

              i don’t know.

              but it’s not hard for me to trace the success of the team vs. the DIRECT involvement of George Steinbrenner in the day to day baseball operations.

              it’s not a coincidence that all of those players were developed, and more importantly, RETAINED, while George was suspended from baseball.

              and he basically let his baseball people (which included Brian Cashman) run the team AS LONG AS THEY WERE WINNING.

              the first time they didn’t win, George started putting his hands back into the baseball side. and he did a lot of harm from 2002-2005.

              and to be honest, we were heading back down that path with Hank last winter, but sanity has seemed to prevail. at least for now. i feel pretty good about Hal.

              • Chris C.

                I couldn’t agree more with every point you just made.

          • Chris C.

            Mo/Jeter/Bernie/Jorge/Pettitte are just an unbelievably special group of players.

            Remember this, also……..there are alot of teams out there that have assembed these types of players through their system all at once as well. You just don’t realize it, because those teams are unable to re-sign every one of them and keep them long-term like the Yankees are.

            Go check out some of the prospects that came through the Expos system

    • Chris C.

      “They were built on great starting pitching. Great starting pitching means winning which means “grit”.

      key, duque, clemens, andy, wells, etc made Brosius etc great.”

      It also didn’t hurt that they’re offense led the league in OBP and OPS a good many of those years, thereby wearing down opposing starting pitchers on a routine basis.

      They did have a gritty bunch of offensive players who did not give away at-bats, worked the counts well, and seemed to know the least of what needed to be done in situations to at least move men into scoring position.

      Let’s not make them out to be the 1960’s Dodgers here.

  • harold

    On the Yankees making up for A-rod’s production…

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.c.....ml?eref=T1

  • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    Unfortunately for Ian O’Connor, it turns out that Cody Ransom is a selfish superstar slugger who’s only interested in padding his own stats and whose favorite teammates are Me, Myself, and I. It’s the craziest of coincidences, but his favorite player growing up was ARod; he’s patterned his whole lifestyle and demeanor around him.

    Ransom was spotted over the weekend canoodling with his new girlfriend, Rosanna Arquette. Looks like replacing ARod with Ransom is only going to mean more of the same; we’re still doomed.

    (Also, facts are facts: During the years Ransom played with the Giants from 2001-2004, the team did not win a World Series. However, during the first 50 years of the 20th century, while the team was located in New York, the Giants won 5 championships.

    Coincidence, or guilty as charged?)

    • steve (different one)

      speaking of Ransom and O’Connor, did anyone read the column he wrote about the accident Ransom was in during college?

      yikes.

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