Open Thread: RAB on the airwaves


Forgive the shameless self-promotion, but I’ll be Mike Silva’s show tonight around 7:45 to tell him what I think about the New Stadium after checking the place out yesterday. You can listen via the NY Baseball Digest website or 1240 AM WGBB. Howard Megdel of SNY will be on as well, but I’m not sure if we’ll be on at the same time. Either way, make sure you give it a listen.

While I’m doing that, Ben will be appearing on Tyler Hissey’s Around the Majors Weekly show at 8:00pm. He’ll be previewing the Yanks’ season for about 25 minutes, and you’ll be able to listen here. Once you’re done listening to me blabbing about the New Stadium, head on over and listen to Ben talk about the actual team.

Meanwhile, baseball season starts tonight! The first of 2,430 games will take place in Philadelphia, as the World Champion Phillies send Brett Myers to the mound to take on Derek Lowe and the Braves. In one of the many quirks of baseball, the Dodgers and Giants played a cactus league game this afternoon. The Yanks don’t start their season until tomorrow afternoon, but right now the weather isn’t looking so great, so they might have to push back the opener until Tuesday. Eh, what’s another day at this point? I’m sure this would ignite another round of kneejerk “the season starts too late so push it back two weeks so the weather is better and play the World Series in November but when it’s cold in November complain that they start the season too late and they should start it earlier so they don’t have to play World Series games in November!” reactions. You know what I’m talking about.

Anyway, here’s your open thread for the night. Talk about the Phils-Braves, Knicks-Raptors, Sixers-Nets, whatever your heart desires. Just be nice.

Oh, and if you haven’t already pledged for our 2009 Pledge Drive benefitting Joe Torre’s Safe At Home foundation, please considering doing so. Put your feelings about Joe aside and think of the kids who are scared to be in their own home.


  1. Matt says:


  2. Manimal says:

    Just curious, how many people still think that AJ Burnett was the wrong choice and we should’ve gotten Lowe?

    • Kevin G. says:

      Just curious, how many people still think that AJ Burnett was the wrong choice and we should’ve gotten Lowe Sheets?

      • Rich says:

        The reason I was opposed to signing AJ (apart from length of contact) was if the money allocated to him precluded signing Tex, which was the media spin at the time.

      • whozat says:

        Sheets? The guy who won’t be pitching until maybe halfway through the season?

    • andrew says:

      Coming into the offseason, my priority list out of those 3 was: Sheets, Burnett, Lowe.

      I wanted Sheets #1 because I figured due to his injury concerns he would’ve been a bargain.
      Burnett #2 because he was a proven AL/big game power pitcher. Even knowing the injury concerns, he has a ton of talent and I was secretly hoping he would come here and stay healthy
      Lowe is #3 because of his age and because I didn’t think his NL pitch to contact style would translate will in the AL east.
      Once Sheets went down, Burnett became my #1 choice (after CC, of course)

    • Based on the fact that Burnett is a bigger injury risk than Lowe, and Lowe’s signed to a shorter, cheaper contract, yes, I still think Burnett was the wrong choice and we should have gotten Lowe.

      Hope I’m wrong.

      The fact that Burnett has made in through a month and a half without getting injured yet does not mean the choice was a correct one.

    • radnom says:

      “Just curious, how many people still think that AJ Burnett was the wrong choice and we should’ve gotten Lowe?”

      The debate was never (for me at least) Lowe vs. Burnett. Who says either of them had to be signed for that much commitment. Out of the two, I still feel Burnett was the better option.

      And its easy to gloat about Sheets now that his injury has come to full light, but any interest in Sheets was based on the initial reports of his injury, and qualified by a full medical examination.

      • Matt K says:

        Right now I like AJ. Maybe its just his amazing curveball teasing me but I can’t wait to watch him pitch.

        • andrew says:

          his curve has definitely been teasing me the last few weeks. Never really appreciated it when he was in Toronto. It is a nasty, nasty pitch.

          • It is a nasty, nasty pitch, yes.

            So is Lowe’s sinker.

            • radnom says:

              Yeah, in the same way Wang’s is…a reliable good pitch when located properly.
              Not really comparable to a pitch like AJ’s curveball.
              I know youre all about how Lowe has been an overall better pitcher in his career (although doubtful it remains so over the course of their current contracts), Lowe is much more of a pitcher than Burnett, not so much of a ‘nasty’ thrower. His command was what many believe was killing him at the end of his Boston days, and managed to figure something out and dropped his BB/9 by a whole point when he moved to LA.

              • Mike Pop says:

                I also like A.J. more because of my mancrush and that he is a K guy. Maybe, just maybe, Lowe would get a little more beat up because of…the Cap’n.

              • Yeah, in the same way Wang’s is…a reliable good pitch when located properly.

                If Burnett’s curve isn’t “located properly”, it’s a crappy pitch. Your qualifier is a tautology. Every pitch must be located properly in order to be effective.

                • andrew says:

                  I think it’s a little different though, because Burnett can throw his curve in the dirt and get easy swings and misses or he can throw it in the zone and get outs that way as well. I’m not quite sure Wanger’s or Lowe’s sinker work quite like that. If their sinkers are low and out of the zone, guys can just take them.

                • andrew says:

                  And yea, I guess you can say guys can take Burnett’s curveball in the dirt too, but i think the difference is that Burnett’s curve can fool people, Wang and Lowe can’t really do that.

                • radnom says:

                  If Burnett’s curve isn’t “located properly”, it’s a crappy pitch. Your qualifier is a tautology. Every pitch must be located properly in order to be effective.

                  Not really, since we were talking about “nastyness”. I compared Lowe to Wang who is certainly an effective pitcher. A mediocre fastball can be effective when its located properly. By the same token a sick curveball is useless is you can’t get it in the strike zone. Does this mean they are the same quality pitches? No.

                  If Burnett had Lowe’s command, he would be the best pitcher in the league. If Lowe had Burnett’s command he would be unemployed. Clearly there is a difference in the quality of the pitches (which, along with command, is only a part of the equation of how effective a pitcher is).

          • pat says:

            Word. When he backdoors it on lefties it’s unhittable.

    • Mike Axisa says:

      I still think they should have gone with Lowe, but I’m not complaining.

  3. Kevin G. says:

    Oh, and if you haven’t already pledged for our 2009 Pledge Drive benefitting Joe Torre’s Safe At Home foundation, please considering doing so.

    Instead of donating for each of the team’s home runs, you should donate money for every time we hear Michael Kay say “past a diving Jeter.”

    • Yankeegirl49 says:

      You know, I had always thought his D wasnt as bad as some made it out to be. Then I started reading this site and these comments. When it was mentioned how many times that was said, I realized that it just might be as bad as some say. I have pointed that out to some friends and all have the same reaction “wow, never thought of it that way”.

      • andrew says:

        Same over here. I could tell from watching sportscenter top 10 and rarely seeing Jeter on it (i know thats a bad barometer, but just for the sake of the anecdote…) but seeing other ss’s around the league making diving stops. I figured he was just an avg ss, but since i started reading RAB about a year ago, i’ve started to really notice his defensive flaws more than before.

        • John says:

          Me too…Being young and a big Yanks fan but not yet a smart fan made me think Jeter was the best SS in the world (after A-rod of course) until like 2005.

        • 27 this year says:

          diving stops have nothing to do with good defense, just to make a point.

    • Seriously, though. donate. It’s for a good cause. Do it.

  4. Matt says:

    John Kruk just said the Rangers could win the AL West “if they can pitch” and that Chris Davis could hit 40-45 homers.

    • Both those statements are true.

      Here’s some more statements that are true:
      The Angels could win the AL West if they can pitch.
      The Athletics could win the AL West if they can pitch.
      The Mariners could win the AL West if they can pitch.
      Vlad Guerrero could hit 40-45 homers.
      Matt Holliday could hit 40-45 homers.
      Adrian Beltre could hit 40-45 homers.

  5. Drew says:

    Good work on the radio Mike A. Love the plug for Jorge’s foundation.

  6. Matt says:

    And here…we….GO!

  7. Matt K says:

    Statistics question

    Does a reliever get a hold anytime he holds a lead?? I was thinking there might be a better stat when there is hold with 1 or 2 runs are the difference. Iam sure I am not an innovator here, there are a lot of stats out there I don’t know about.

  8. Yankeegirl49 says:


  9. pat says:

    Pumped to watch schafer

  10. I hate to sound like a traditionalist stick in the mud, but I hate the alternate Sunday uni concept and think the Braves should at least have worn normal unis for Opening Day.

    It’s freaking opening day. Wear gray like a grownup.

  11. pat says:

    Frickin destroyed that.

  12. Matt says:

    Wow, ESPN’s putting OPS on their stat line, nice.

    And bigger wow. The McCannibal is here.

  13. Drew says:

    WOWSAH! yea wbc is bad for getting ready for the season..

  14. Jamal G. says:

    You bastards still think it was an overdraft when I took Brian McCann with my second-round pick?

  15. usty says:

    Ugh…seeing as I’m taking a half day to drive from Trenton to Baltimore tomorrow, I’m really really really hoping I don’t have to do that on Tuesday too.

  16. Is it wrong that I enjoyed the following sequence of events?

    1.) Jon Miller lists McCann’s 2008 OPS of .896, an OPS that is pretty freakin awesome and legitimizes you as a middle of the order bat
    2.) Steve Phillips pooh-poohs Brian McCann’s legitimacy as a middle of the order bat by saying that he’s not really an “aircraft carrier” kinda guy who can give you 40 homers and says that the Braves batting McCann 4th indicates that their lineup doesn’t really have any legit middle of the order bats
    3.) McCann immediately hits a mammoth homer

  17. Morgan: ” I think there’s a little different feeling with the Mets now about how they can close it out if they can get ahead…”

    Too bad they won’t get ahead in the first place.

  18. Mike Pop says:

    Jeff making a comeback, he’s been here for years!

  19. Drew says:

    Good at bat young man

  20. Mike Pop says:


  21. Jamal G. says:

    LoL, Brett Myers.

  22. pat says:

    No shit. Nady for schafer. DO IT

  23. Matt says:

    Way to go, Schafer.

  24. Mike Axisa says:

    This Schafer kid just might make it. Congrats kid.

  25. Matt says:

    Haha, I was waiting for Morgan to say “slide piece.”

  26. Yankeegirl49 says:

    Im already tired of Miller, Morgan and Phillips!

  27. Things you’ll hear a bunch this year:

    “Ibañez is out number two.”

    • Matt says:

      Terrible move, considering what Burrell ended up signing for.

      You know why he hits well on each pitch, Steve? He’s a good fucking hitter.

    • andrew says:

      I’m not sure if I agree with that. He’s been one of the most consistent hitters over the last 3 years while playing in a pitcher’s park. I’m sure he’ll be just fine.

  28. Matt says:

    Get ready for a return trip to Lehigh Valley, Brett.

  29. Drew says:

    Brett Myers getting slapped around like his w… wait I won’t go there.

  30. pat says:

    Our charleston pitching staff is gonna be the tits again this season. Brackman,Banuelos, Marshall, Mitchell. Booya

  31. Jamal G. says:

    Honestly, who would you guys put on the non-Ruth-Gehrig-DiMaggio-Mantle “Mt. Rushmore” of all-time Yankees? I’d say Yogi, Jeter, the Boss and the Chairman of the Board.

    Are those your choices as well (please, don’t forget the first sentence)?

  32. Drew says:

    Damn the braves ball girl down the line is hot.

  33. Jake H says:


    Here is the roster. Some interesting things on there.

  34. God, I’m going to love watching that Pedroia commercial a thousand times this season.

    Side note: Do you think Pedroia has all his furniture in his house custom ordered in smaller sizes so that he can actually reach the top shelves of his bookcases and entertainment stands? I say yes.

  35. Mike Axisa says:

    Wow, Francoeur hit a homer and worked a 3-0 count in his first two at-bats of the season.

  36. Mike Axisa says:

    Jordan Schafer is the balls.

  37. daniel aka bryce harper says:

    Is it possible to have a worse booth than espn?
    miller= the failed poet
    morgan= the failed analyst/ user of english
    phillips= the failed gm in pretty much every way

  38. pollo says:

    hey guys gonna be joining you this year. NoMaas is cool but there’s too many personalities there lol. Is Betances moving to AA this year?

    • pat says:

      If the cut in BB’s at the end of the season was the beginning of a trend rather than capitalizing on depleted rosters then yes. If he keeps walking 7 or 8 guys a start then no.

      • pollo says:

        so he’s starting in A? Tampa I’m guessing then?

      • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

        To be fair, even in the first half he didn’t walk a ton of guys in most of his starts. He walked his 2-4 guys a game, but then had horrendous outings here and there where he walked the ballpark, which drove up his overall rate. In the second half, he was much better and more consistent.

    • Mike Axisa says:

      He could, but I don’t think so. No reason to rush him, and he’s got lots to work on.

      • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

        Mike, do you have the same impression I do about Dellin? That he’s going to slog his way through the minors, showing flashes of promise here and there, and then he will either put it all together one day and rocket to the big club or not do that and eventually be DFA’d in a few years.

        It’s going to all come together at once, or not at all with him. He’s not a steady mover like a Z-Mac, he will either figure it out or not.

        • Mike Axisa says:

          Heh, isn’t that how it usually goes?

          • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

            Not always. I can see guys like Z-Mac and Bleich gaining experience and going step by step annually through the minors since they don’t have overpowering stuff. But Betances is a guy I could see starting the year in Tampa and being called up in August if he breaks out.

  39. Mike Axisa says:

    Who is Logan Schafer?

  40. John says:

    Is it too early to say Phillies wont repeat this year?

    • Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

      Yes, but its not too early to say that both they and the Mets don’t have enough starting pitching.

      Marlins are my sleeper team for this year. They have a new ballpark being built, so they won’t sell any major parts off at the trade deadline.

  41. Matt says:

    Did Joe Morgan really just say that Greg Dobbs is as important to the Phillies as Rollins, Utley, and Howard?

  42. Mike Axisa says:

    Good God have I missed meaningful baseball.

  43. donttradecano says:

    Jordan Schafer starting in my fantasy lineup FTW.

  44. Matt says:

    Stat Track? Isn’t that just the box score?

  45. Mike Pop says:

    Quick game.

  46. Mike Axisa says:

    Totally unnecessary pitching move. Taschner looked fine last inning, no reason he can’t stay in to face the two lefties. This is why teams blow games in the late innings. The more relievers you use, the more likely it is that someone will flat out suck.

  47. Artist formerly known as 'The' Steve says:

    Worst kept secret in Baseball, Ryan Howard can’t hit a slider.

  48. Mike Axisa says:

    That Lincecum commercial is great. The kid had the same freaking delivery in Little League.

  49. pat says:

    Nerd Alert- This is so annoying, I’m playing as my RTTS pitcher and the effing manager insists on pulling me from a game if I give up a hit past the 5th or 6th inning. I’ll be cruising along with like 2 hits 7k and 0BB with plenty of stamina and the dick pulls me after 65 or 70 pitches and costs me a bunch of points. Does this get better as your player gets older or does the computer always screw you?

  50. donttradecano says:

    what time would the game be on tuesday if it gets moved?

  51. anonymous says:

    Im really happy the Red Sox were to cheap to sign Lowe.

  52. Mike Axisa says:

    Lowe’s cruisin’.

  53. Mike Axisa says:

    Why take Lowe out? He’s at 97 pitches and hasn’t pitched under stress once all game.

  54. Matt says:

    A little early on the “it’s all come together” line there, Steve.

  55. handtius says:

    I would have liked the yanks to have gotten this Gonzales guy, back when they had a chance. Sick lefty. But Marte is good.

  56. Matt says:

    Ryan Howard will either K or GIDP.

  57. Mike Pop says:

    What are you looking at?

  58. Jamal G. says:

    Mike Gonzalez has cojones.

  59. Mike Axisa says:

    Heh, wouldn’t they like to have the righty Burrell right now?

  60. Jamal G. says:

    That’s bush league, Gonzalez, it’s only Game 1 of 162!

  61. Jamal G. says:

    Why the fuck is Joe Morgan talking about “fighting back” after Game 1? Why?! Mo, tell me why!

  62. Matt says:

    Renee Montgomery > A.J. Price.

  63. handtius says:

    River Ave Guys:

    Did you guys ever consider doing an open chat as a game thread? That way there is no refreshing needed and it makes conversation a lot easier. Just an idea, but you probably already thought of it and ruled it out for reasons unknown to me.

    • Joey says:

      just my 2 cents, but it’s easier to reply and converse in these threads than it would be in a mass free for all game chat. If you want to talk about one topic here it’s easy while other people are talking about something totally different below. The chats could get a very confusing.

      Don’t know how long you’ve been around, but if a thread gets too long and takes a while to re-load just suggest to one of the guys to make an overflow thread which they did many times last year.

      • handtius says:

        I’ve been looking at the site for a few years, never comment a ton, but when I do, I just find the constant reloading annoying. It’s never really slow, just don’t like constantly refreshing, regardless of what it is.

      • andrew says:

        Yea I would have to agree. One thing I do find annoying about game threads (I am guilty of it too), is that people just post things like… “nice grab by tex” or things like that, that don’t necessarily start conversation and just take up space and make the game threads harder to get through sometimes, but I acknowledge that having a thread with the refreshing is the easiest way to have everyone’s voices heard. And with the new feature that shows which posts are new, it makes weeding through a giant game thread much much easier than last year.

        • handtius says:

          what if it could e sent inside a flash template, that auto-refreshes, but still exists as the comment thread does now, where conversations stay linked, but as people respond to a comment it shows up, instead of the whole page refreshing. Does that makes sense?

          • Joey says:

            Makes sense, propose it to Mike, the only thing is how much would it cost and how complicated would it be to get/put on here. I really have no idea.

          • Mike Axisa says:

            That would crush our bandwidth and cripple the site.

            A live chat would be too messy since there are multiple conversations going on at once. One thing we’ve talked about in paginated comments, with 100 or so comments to page to speed up load times. The feature that shows new comments should help a lot this year.

        • Joey says:

          Eh, if it’s a game thread everyone likes to discuss the game. If Tex makes a nice grab it shouldn’t be looked down upon when a few people comment “nice glove” or whatever. I see what you’re saying that it makes it a little harder to get through everything, but you can skip right over those, they really aren’t conversation starters. It’s like chatting with people at the bar, screaming at Jetes because he missed a ball to his left or yelling in joy when he hits a HR.

          Plus like you said, with the new Yankee symbol new comment things, it should be much easier to find new comments if you’re so inclined to do so.

          Anyway, I put way to much time into that. lol

  64. Paulie says:

    Ramiro Pena vs. Alberto Gonzalez

    Potential upside?

  65. donttradecano says:

    can someone explain why elvis andrus isnt active in yahoo yet?

  66. Drew says:

    about 16 hours to yankees baseball!!!

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