Shades of 2003

Spring Training Game Thread: Joba looks to get back on track
The Joba we know

I vividly remember Opening Day 2003. I was a sophomore in college, and on the night of the Yanks’ first game against the Blue Jays, I was in the middle of a rehearsal with my jazz group. When rehearsal ended, I had a phone call from my parents with some terrible, terrible news: Derek Jeter had been involved in a bad injury.

As the news unfolded over the next few days, the prognosis was not good. Jeter has dislocated his shoulder in a collision at third base with the catcher. He would not play again until May 13.

At the time, an injury to Jeter and a lengthy stay on the DL seemed unfathomable. How could the Yanks stay afloat with Erick Almonte filling in? Well, the team, behind some very solid pitching, went 25-11 without Jeter.

Flash forward to this weekend when Alex Rodriguez announced his intention to go under the knife. As Tyler Kepner noted, this injury had 2003 written all over it. The Yanks would be without one of their leaders for the first month of the season, but it will all be okay.

While a lot of crazy columnists wrongly feel the Yanks will be better off without A-Rod, the team can weather the A-Rod-less storm for a few weeks. As they did in 2003, they can lean on their pitching to bring them through April, and when A-Rod returns, well, the team just gets that much better.

Spring Training Game Thread: Joba looks to get back on track
The Joba we know
  • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

    I remember I was driving home from somewhere with my dad and we were listening to the game on the radio. We were very bummed on that ride home.

  • UWS

    If the pitching holds up, they should be OK.

    Is there any way we could get an overflow for the Open Thread? The original doesn’t load for me anymore…

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

      Use this post. We’re working on that problem.

      • Chris

        And to think… this is just a meaningless spring training game.

        • Steve H

          Very impressive. When I first went to the post there were 2 comments. I went to bring out the trash, hit refresh and there were 89 comments.

        • A.D.

          Meaningless!?!?!?!… teh Joba’s career was on the line after those first 2 starts!!1!

          • http://evilempire20.com Ryan S.

            The bullpen’s cold embrace was just about to take hold ;-)

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        If you would have told me that Eugene Kingsale would break the RAB servers, I’d have looked at you like you were crazy.

  • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    HAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      OH MY GOD DID I JUST SEE HENSLEY MEULENS?

      Hensley “Bam Bam” Meulens is a coach of the Dutch WBC Team? This shit keeps getting better and better.

      • Steve H

        Wow. When I was a kid I went to Albany to see the AC Yankees quite a few times, Bam Bam was one of the best players to watch. And I’ll never forget watching Brien Taylor. Damn, what a shame.

  • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

    How can baseball fans not be into the classic. These games are amazing!!!!!

    • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

      The first part was supposed to be a question.

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

      Seriously. That game was better than any WS game we’ve seen in about six years.

      • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

        My wife was sitting on the edge of her seat for yesterday’s and today’s games (PR/Netherlands and DR/Netherlands) and she hates baseball.

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Here’s the thing, though: that game, while exciting as all balls, wouldn’t have been as good had it been DR v. USA or DR v. PR or US v. Japan.

        Nothing rocks like an unheralded underdog. The Netherlands may be the best thing to ever happen to the WBC.

    • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

      I did enjoy Adam Dunn JACKING that ball into right field the other day. As he was rounding the bases, all I could think was “Suck it, Riccardi.”

      • Drew

        LOL me too, I thought he was trying to find his suite with that jack.

      • http://evilempire20.com Ryan S.

        And he did it in Riccardi’s house too.

        • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

          Yes, Ryan, that was the point. ;)

          /jerk

        • A.D.

          It was in the mold of when Clemens looked up into the owners box in his return to Fenway. Dunn’s HR haven’t been quite as good, but up there

          • Steve H

            After his 16th K. That was sweet. He struggled thru the first, and then was completely dominating for the next 7 innings. He put on a show that day.

            • jsbrendog

              steroids

  • Victoria

    I remember SO vividly watching that Jeter injury on TV as it happened during dinner (I was sitting in “your” seat), I was traumatized.

  • UWS

    Damnit, I wish I could’ve watched the WBC game…sounds like it was pretty unbelievable.

    • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

      Not to rub it in, but it really was. It was crazy!

  • marc resnick

    amazing. goood for them. and hey now we gte robbie and marte back a little sooner plus its always fun watching reyes mope on a bench after an awful loss

    • http://www.retire21.org Mike R. – Retire 21

      That was a shot at Jeter.

  • Drew

    Well said Ben. What a game that was!!? Who would’ve thunk it?

  • http://evilempire20.com Ryan S.

    Wow, good for the Netherlands. I’m pleased for a variety of reasons that they won.

    1. We get Robbie Cano back in ST now – this is definitely the biggest reason I’m glad.

    2. It was a straight up great game and I love watching underdogs win (except when they play the Yankees)

    3. You’d this this will help increase interest in baseball in Europe. That’s gotta be a good thing, right?

  • Sweet Dick Willie

    Shades of 2003?

    More like shades of 1939 http://www.theyankeeuniverse.com/?p=1424

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Way to hype it, Willie, way to hype it!

      You’re like the Flavor Flav of Yankee blogs.

  • Andy In Sunny Daytona

    Do you play the jazz flute Ben?

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

      Tenor sax.

      • Andy In Sunny Daytona

        The jazz flute is baby making music.

    • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt

      Ben is not a little fairy boy.

      • http://img228.imageshack.us/img228/9273/immagineus7.jpg Mike Pop

        I dabble.

        • jsbrendog

          tonight we have a very special treat. mr mike pop is oging to play the yazz flute for us. come on mr pop.

  • Andy In Sunny Daytona

    What a play from Cuba!!

  • Rich

    Francesa made a comment yesterday with regard to how A-Rod would be treated if the Yankees played really well during his absence, obviously overlooking the Yankees’ record during Jeter’s extended absence in 2003.

  • marc resnick

    wow that 463 was insaneee

  • keith

    what a ridiculous dp turned by cuba

  • http://evilempire20.com Ryan S.

    While A-Rod is clearly the single most important player on our team, the third base position (even when manned by Rodriguez) won’t ever have as much of an impact as that night’s starting pitcher. Our starting rotation is beastly, and we even have something pitching-wise than we didn’t have in 2003 – a well-managed bullpen (!!!!!!!). If you compare this team to what we had last year, which still won 89 games, its not-even-close. Teixeira himself is a freaking 7 win upgrade if we believe what the numbers tell.

  • A.D.

    Eugene Kingsale redemption. And the fact that anything Dutch broke the game thread is a bit insane

  • steve (different one)

    and could you imagine the reaction from yankee fans to Cashman promoting Almonte to Jeter’s spot if baseball blogs were as popular as they are now?

    back then, shit just happened and teams dealt with it by compensating in other areas. the team survived b/c they had Clemens, Pettitte, Moose, and Wells. just like the 2009 yankees will survive b/c they have CC, AJ, CMW, Pettitte, and Joba.

    no one spent 2 weeks whining that they didn’t have a slightly better backup who would be worth 1/2 a win more over that month.

    • Steve H

      Great post.

      • http://evilempire20.com Ryan S.

        I wasn’t able to waste nearly enough time talking about things I had absolutely no control over in 2003 though.

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          The internet is a series of tubes.

  • A.D.

    Crashed thread on 300+ comments for WBC/ST game. Looks like RAB servers are in spring training too, Joba Beckett dual against the Sox couldn’t handle this

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

      At no point did the server crash. We’re having some caching/load average issues. Better to find out now than later.

      • A.D.

        Well no crash is good, and that’s why there is preseason, get all the kinks out

  • BigBlueAL

    I wander if Lou Piniella watched Marmol implode closing tonight….

    • A.D.

      Probably, but it really doesn’t matter, I don’t see them putting Gregg in the 9th over Marmol, and I don’t see them making Marmol a starter again.

  • btour99

    Wow, 100 to 77? Not even my guy on MLB 09 The Show can do that!!!

  • steve (different one)

    check out the Brett Marshall interview on NoMaas. dude is just hilariously confident. love it.

    i bet he has many leather bound books.

    • A.D.

      Nice interview by Marshall

  • Conor Cashel

    ben what instrument did you play?

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

      Tenor saxophone.

  • Conor Cashel

    nice. do you still play?

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

      Unfortunately, I haven’t had time in a few years. I still have both of my saxes though. One day, I’ll break ’em out again.