Apr
24

Same rivalry, new faces

By

When David Ortiz takes to the field plate later tonight, it will mark his 101st regular season game as a member of the Red Sox facing the Yankees. Since 2003, no one on Boston has faced the Yankees more often than Ortiz has, and he knows the rivalry quite well.

Lately, though, Ortiz has been a shell of the player who killed the Yankees in 2003 and 2004. As Alan Schwarz detailed yesterday, Ortiz is an out-of-shape DH-only player, and those do not age gracefully. While his bat has shown signs of life over the last few games, he is hitting .220/.294/.322 with no home runs in the early going. He’s either primed for a breakout or has entered what we’ll diplomatically call the “decline” phase of his career.

Yesterday, in preparation for this weekend’s big series against the Yankees, the Red Sox vet offered up some unsolicited advice to the Yankees. Particularly, Ortiz decided to warn Joba Chamberlain about his past headhunting. “None of that, man — just play the game the way it’s supposed to be, and that’s about it,” Ortiz said “This is a guy, as good as he is, the next step for him will be to earn respect from everybody in the league. He’s not a bad guy, but when things like that happen, people get the wrong idea.”

Apparently, Kevin Youkilis can’t speak up for himself.

Anyway, when Joba takes the mound tonight, he’ll get the hero’s welcome in Boston, but he has a game to win. He has to keep his emotions — and his fastball — under control, and he will have to go toe-to-toe with the Red Sox ace. Last year, he outdueled Josh Beckett in Boston to announce his arrival as a Major League starter. This year, he’ll have to go toe-to-toe with Jon Lester, arguably a better pitcher than Beckett. It is no small task, and with boos raining down, it won’t be the easiest environment in which Joba must pitch.

But Chamberlain isn’t the only player due for some Boston scorn. While A-Rod, the object of New England’s collective affection, won’t be there, Mark Teixeira will, and you know what they say about a lover scorned. As the Yanks’ first baseman said to The Star-Ledger, he expects a hostile crowd tonight. “I’m sure they’ll be heavy boos,” Teixeira said. “I would expect nothing less from those fans. I would expect nothing less than tons of boos and tons of energy in the stadium. This is a great rivalry. It’s going to be a fun weekend.”

The Red Sox will be booing at Teixeira because he had the audacity to take a better offer in New York when the team’s owner refused to up his deal by another $10 million. Teixeira reminded anyone listening of that fact yesterday. “I enjoyed talking with the Red Sox all offseason,” he said. “There’s no question why the Red Sox are in the position they are. Because he’s an incredible GM and they have a great organization. There were opportunities for every team that I dealt with. Every team had a chance. Every team was given an opportunity to make their best offer. In the end, the Yankees made the best and it was a great fit for me.”

And so it goes. It’s the same game with new faces, and those new faces are fitting in off the field quite nicely. Welcome to the Red Sox/Yankees Rivalry 2009.

Categories : Musings

98 Comments»

  1. Bo says:

    If theres one guy who def did juice and has escaped any blame its Ortiz. The circumstansial evidence is just to hard to ignore. Dominican, big, nondescript player. Too bad we didnt get any Boston area informants in the Mitchell Report. He searched high and low for the 2 guys who just happened to live in NY. No other city has juice dealers or anything.

  2. Expired Milk says:

    This is like a dream weekend for Yankees/baseball fans

    Joba-Lester Tonight
    Burnett-Beckett Saturday
    Pettitte-Masterson Sunday

    Ahh Ortiz you had nothing to say about your boy Beckett when he threw at Abreu’s head. But you made it so if Joba throws anywhere near Youk then he might get a warning atleast.

  3. Mike Pop says:

    Welcome to the Gravel Pit baby!!!

  4. Al says:

    The Yankees season doesn’t truly begin until the first series with the Sawx. Hopefully Joba has a stellar game tonight- while pitching inside to the Sawx batters- and shuts up everyone in New England including Big Papi.

  5. Rob in CT says:

    I eagerly await the first pitch Joba throws an inch off the plate inside, and the subsequent freakout by whomever is at the plate. And then Beckett hitting Jeter tomorrow.

    A group of Sox fans in the office was just discussing which Yankee should be hit by Beckett. They came up with Cano. I told them I’d be pleased if they handed Robbie 1st base. He’s got armor.

    • Mike Pop says:

      I’d be pleased if it was Ransom.

      But ya, Beckett will probably throw at whoever and then charge the plate Krazy Kyle style.

    • ClayBuchholzLovesLaptops says:

      Cano??? Why him? I could understand if they came up with Tex or Jeter but Cano seems totally off.base. Is there any reasoning behind that?

      • Rob in CT says:

        The reasoning was that Cano was part of the next Yankee generation, so it’s time to hit him. You know, introduce him to the rivalry and all that.

    • Slugger27 says:

      they wont hit jeter… if they had to make a statement by hitting someone i gotta believe its jorge, damon, or possibly tex

      nothing to be base it off of… i just think jeters respect around the league cant be understated

      • Rob in CT says:

        Damon was their other option. They were all up for hitting him.

      • Nady Nation says:

        Seriously? I bet the Sawx have thrown at Jeter over 10 times in the past 5 years.

        • Slugger27 says:

          he may have been hit by the pitch… but i dont think they were targeting him

          theres a difference between an inside fastball getting away from someone and targeting a players ribs to send a message… if the 2nd is what theyre doing, i would believe its jorge or damon

  6. Joebrah says:

    I think you meant “no one on Boston has faced the Yankees more often that Ortiz. I don’t mean to be grammar police or anything.

  7. Slightly Cordial Axl says:

    I love how Boston has constantly faced teams missing their superstar(s) so far due to injury…only for them to return to face the Yankees. BJ Upton was out of the Rays line up and returned to face us (even though we took 2 of 3 from the Rays and the Sox lost 2 of 3 to the Rays), the anemic Twins were missing 2 time batting champion Joe Mauer in their series…and he’ll surely be ready by the time we face them…and now the Yankees who are missing arguably the best hitter in baseball this weekend. I mean does it ever end with the luck they’ve had over the past few years?? Bobbling baseballs off the walls in the outfield and having them called as fair catches…it’s just everything.

    What worries me about tonight is that Lester might have been bopped around a lot…but he was still striking people out. And his last start was a great one against the Orioles who hit the crap out of the ball against us. Joba, on the other hand, hasn’t really shown any signs of dominance so far this year. He has 9 K’s in 10.2 innings…with 10 hits and 6 walks. That’s pretty terrible. And he’s not coming off of a great outing like Lester is. Not to mention the game is at Fenway…where they will be relentless with him.

    Can’t say I’m a big fan of this one…doesn’t look good for the Yankees. When you insert Cody Ransom in there it makes you gag…and what’s worse is that if we lose tonight…Posada will presumably be out of the line up tomorrow…leaving our offense with Ransom, Gardner/Melky, Molina, maybe Matsui, etc. It’s just a bad recipe all around for everybody.

    • Slightly Cordial Axl says:

      My posts are so rational that nobody can respond to it because of the permanent rose colored glasses they have glued on their faces?? I’m being serious here. I hate the Red Sox more than anything…but our teams record seems deceiveing when you look in depth at the games we’ve played. All the wins were nail-biters pretty much and all the losses were massacres…

      • Ryan says:

        Dude, calm down you sound like a paranoid Red Sox fan. Every team has injuries, the Yankees just faced an A’s team with it’s entire rotation on the DL. Also, despite the walk rate, Joba’s peripherals aren’t bad at all (SSS alert!)

      • whozat says:

        “My posts are so rational absurd and reactionary that nobody can respond to it because of the permanent rose colored glasses they have glued on their faces??”

      • jeremy says:

        Massacres, like the ones the Yankees have endured, especially the historic one in the new park, are more of an anomally. Close games, like the ones the Yanks have won, are more of an indicator of a teams actual performance. Just sayin’

      • LiveFromNewYork says:

        people have stopped responding to you because you tend to sound like a tool

    • Chris C. says:

      “I love how Boston has constantly faced teams missing their superstar(s) so far due to injury…only for them to return to face the Yankees. BJ Upton was out of the Rays line up and returned to face us (even though we took 2 of 3 from the Rays and the Sox lost 2 of 3 to the Rays), the anemic Twins were missing 2 time batting champion Joe Mauer in their series…and he’ll surely be ready by the time we face them…and now the Yankees who are missing arguably the best hitter in baseball this weekend. I mean does it ever end with the luck they’ve had over the past few years??”

      Oh my God! I’m a Yankee fan and all, but even I can’t believe this shit. Are you whining because teams that have less than 25% of the Yankees payroll are entering a series against the Yankees fully healthy???

      It aint “bad luck” that the Yankees get injuries. Aside from AROD, that’s what you get when you enter seasons with players who are in their mid-thirties, or have injury-prone pasts!

  8. JeffG says:

    “They are the only Major League Baseball team to have won two World Series championships in this century. This puts them, in that period of time, two World Series championships ahead of the Yankees.” – Bauman speaking of the Red Sox.
    Am I missing something? Did we not win a special something in 2000? Wouldn’t that only put them 1 ahead for this century?

    Retarded Bauman aside, I have such a better outlook on what this team can do this year. Boston is still good but I think we have a team that can finally compete with them on the mound and once A-Rod comes back we are going to have a better 1 through 9.

    • steve (different one) says:

      technically, 2000 is the last year of the previous century…

      • JeffG says:

        I always had 2000 as the “start of the new millenium”
        … thanks for pointing that out, I stand corrected.
        Apologies to Bauman, who I still think stinks.

    • Slightly Cordial Axl says:

      There was never a year “0″…so technically 2000 was a part of last century…but what a way to seal it off…

  9. dkidd says:

    boston is using a 100 year-old bat “boy” on saturday. prediction: the longest 9 inning game in MLB history

  10. Eric says:

    “They are the only Major League Baseball team to have won two World Series championships in this century. This puts them, in that period of time, two World Series championships ahead of the Yankees.” – Bauman speaking of the Red Sox.
    Am I missing something? Did we not win a special something in 2000? Wouldn’t that only put them 1 ahead for this century?

    If you remember from the show “Seinfeld”,the 21st century begins in 2001 not 2000.

  11. Mike Axisa says:

    Heh, I hope Joba hits Ortiz with a pitch, and replies with “we don’t throw at .220 hitters!!!” when he gets upset.

    • Slightly Cordial Axl says:

      It would be better if Joba wasn’t having a disappointing start to 2009 though… : /

    • Tom Zig says:

      I love how Ortiz gets mad about Joba throwing at Youk a few times, meanwhile Beckett just recently was suspended for throwing at Abreu. Oh and then there was Pedro who enjoyed a few head hunting sessions and then Clemens before him.

      But of course, we are the bad guys.

    • Chris C. says:

      “Heh, I hope Joba hits Ortiz with a pitch, and replies with “we don’t throw at .220 hitters!!!” when he gets upset.”

      Sure, that would be a great move by Joba. Hit Ortiz with a pitch, then insult Mark Teixeira.

  12. Tom Zig says:

    zomg Boston won 2 championships dis Millennium!!11!!!1

  13. GG says:

    I can’t wait to joke around on here with some of you later when Lester can’t last 4 innings

    • whozat says:

      Remember when he actually couldn’t last more than 5 innings on average? His ball/strike ratio was consistently around 1:1, and he just wasn’t efficient at all. It took him about two years to get over that…and yet, people are judging Joba after fewer than 20 starts in the bigs.

      It’s just absurd.

    • Roman says:

      That my friend is very unlikely

  14. Link says:

    I find it interesting Burnett keeps drawing his old Marlin mates, Pavano against Cleveland, and Beckett tomorrow. Will Dontrelle be up by the time we play Detroit lol?

    • Chris C. says:

      I find it even more interesting that his two worst starts of the year were against them. Does this guy put pressure on himself, then not respond well? I hope not.

  15. just a reader says:

    I just scanned many of the comments here after reading the article. One of you stated how many times jeter has been hit (over 2006 – 2008 season) by red sox pitchers (3), were you aware it is less than Bal/Tam/Tor (Kan has hit him 4 times). So, you are wrong about that “fact”;
    Secondly (warning: opinion follows), if beckett wanted to hit abreu, he would have. Joba wanted to hit Youkils in the head (3 times) and aimed there. Over the last 3 years, Youkilis has been hit 8 times by the yankees (fact).

    Facts. Use them, they help.

    • So you’re saying that late in a 5-0 game, Joba was actually aiming for Youk’s head, and you seem to be suggesting that Joba has throw at and hit Youk’s head three times. He didn’t even hit him the first time in that game on August 30, 2007. How’s that for a fact?

    • Moshe Mandel says:

      One minute. So if Beckett wants to hit someone, he would have, but Joba wanted to hit someone, but couldn’t? Seriously, do you not see the logic fail? Also, the Sox have hit more Yankees than vice versa in the last few years, and the gap was even larger when Pedro was around.

      • John S. says:

        Joba has aimed at Youk’s head four times. I don’t think he’s trying to kill him, but it hasn’t “gotten away” from him that many times against one player.

        And Beckett is a headhunter. So was Pedro. So is Joba. All the “but my team is less bad than your team!” is a little silly.

        • Oh, good. So we’ve gone from three to four?

          Five! Do I hear five?! Anyone? Get in at five? Going once…going twice….

          • jsbrendog says:

            eleventy billion!!!!!1

          • John S. says:

            It is four. It was twice in one game, the consecutive pitches that got Joba suspended, and then two other times.

            • I can find two games where Joba did not hit Youkilis but came close. One was the game in which he was tossed; the other was last July. Here is what Joba had to say:

              “Nobody wants the ball in at 90 [mph], whatever it was. But at the end of the day, it’s 1-0, and I’m trying to get a win and it’s what you have to do. It’s a 2-0 count and the game’s 1-0, you think I want to lose the lead and put the lead runner on with those guys behind him? No shot.”

              You guys can continue whining about Youkilis and Joba, but it’s a two-way street. Don’t cheer when Pedro or Beckett buzz a Yankee. It’s all part of the game, and that’s why in this post I’m just saying that Youk should stick up for himself while not complaining about what the Yankees or the Sox do.

              • John S. says:

                “You guys can continue whining about Youkilis and Joba, but it’s a two-way street. Don’t cheer when Pedro or Beckett buzz a Yankee.”

                What are you talking about? I said they were all head hunters, which they are, and I corrected the amount of times Joba has aimed at Youk’s head, which is four. I don’t have a problem with any of it.

              • John S. says:

                Come on, if you’re seriously implying that Joba has not been aiming throws at Youk’s head, for intimidation and to rattle him or whatever, then I honestly don’t know what to say…I’m not saying he’s trying to give him a concussion, but for whatever reason he likes to throw up there against Youkilis.

                • Oh I’m not saying that he wasn’t intent on throwing up and in. Youk crowds over the plate just Jeter and Ortiz and countless others. But I don’t think he was actually aiming for his head. This is probably a much ado about nothing — or at least a much ado about something not so minor.

                • John S. says:

                  No he definitely hangs out over the plate and gets hit a lot because of it (in fact he just got hit in the head the other day, by I think an Orioles pitcher). So I understand why he gets hit a lot.

                  But I do think Joba’s been aiming at his head area. It’s just happened too many times and all in close proximity to his head for me to think otherwise. I’m not up in arms about it, it’s part of the game. It adds spice, and you know that’s what every single person is going to be thinking of when Youks steps in against Joba the first time tonight. And so far it’s given Joba the mental edge against Youks, and we’ll see if that continues.

                • Moshe Mandel says:

                  I think that it is relevant to note that Youk has been hit 36 times over the last 3 seasons.

              • Rob in CT says:

                Joba has thrown some pitches with intent (to rattle). The thing is, the back-to-back pitches that everyone remembers were about 3 feet over Youklis’ head. He didn’t throw “at his head” but rather way the hell over his head. Those pitches would’ve been closer to his head if they had been thrown in the strike zone.

                I would prefer that Joba throw inside but down (belt or below).

              • Chris C. says:

                “Come on, if you’re seriously implying that Joba has not been aiming throws at Youk’s head, for intimidation and to rattle him or whatever, then I honestly don’t know what to say”

                If he was aiming “at his head”, he’d have plugged him already. He’s “aiming” not to let Youkilas feel comfortable at the plate.

                Sure, they are purpose pitches, but the purpose was not to hit him in the head.

          • I believe he’s attributing Scott Proctor’s incident with Joba.

        • Moshe Mandel says:

          Joba is apparently a Youkilis headhunter (and it is a big head) because he hasn’t thrown at anyone else. Beckett and Pedro have shown a pattern against various teams and players. And it is not “my team is less bad,” it is that one team has a history of this over the last 5-7 years, and one team does not. It actually has a lot to do with Joe Torre’s refusal to get involved with that kind of stuff.

          • Max says:

            The first thing I thought when I realized it was that many times for Joba and Youk was that Joba is trying to pitch him a very specific way and can’t, and the result is a ball thrown in that area. I never thought headhunter. The fact that Joba and Youk are so emotional to begin with doesn’t help. Funny how as the sample size grows I feel more inclined to see it as a consistent accident.

    • jsbrendog says:

      go back to baw-ston chowda head

    • kimonizer says:

      just a reader . . . . not a thinker

  16. just a reader says:

    I said thrown at, with intent. And I mentioned the word opinion. We are talking reputation. Beckett does not have this reputation for throwing at batters, while niether does joba, with the exception of throwing at Youkils. There is some history there, don’t you think?

    And Mr. Kabak, I said thrown at. If you took that as meaning hitting, I apologize for your misreading.

    That jeter is always hit by sox pitchers does not wash. The article’s writer did not allow this piece of information.

    Peace

  17. Link says:

    I am curious, do any of the Yankees fans on here comment on Red Sox blogs?

    • jsbrendog says:

      i cant learn their language of grunts and burps.

    • Doug says:

      I comment sometimes on YFSF. It’s not much fun, there are way more Sox fans and the admins get butthurt over everything. There’s so much pretentious outrage over there.

    • Whitey14 says:

      I’m a Sox fan and I don’t even comment on Sox Blogs…..it’s a lot of people blowing each other because they think they’re part of the team or something.

      I like it here because you guys aren’t afraid to argue with each other a little bit. Some of you impress me with your ability to see the Yankees as they are, you’re not afraid to admits their weaknesses and aren’t afraid to give the Sox credit when they have earned it. I try to be as open minded as the better commenters here are. I won’t be booing Teixeira tonight because I don’t hate him. We could debate all night long the Sox actual ability to sign him if they had thrown $10 million more dollars at him, which I think is a load of bunk. Teixeira is not going to admit now that they didn’t have a real chance once the Yankees were involved (and his wife had told him where she wanted him to play) so citing that they did as a fact is questionable, but I digress. Him being a Yankee makes the rivalry a little more fun, but truth be told I wish he was a Red Sock and I wish we were facing CC this weekend instead of Burnett, based on their track records. Good luck, enjoy the games!

      • Chris C. says:

        “Teixeira is not going to admit now that they didn’t have a real chance once the Yankees were involved”

        What? Of course they had a chance. They just got outbid. It’s not like the Yankees got involved, and Teieira was so grateful he volenteered to play for peanuts.

  18. [...] to school after summer break and finding your nemesis waiting by your locker. It’s time to renew the rivalry and get things going. The Yanks and the Sox look to do just that tonight, sending two of their [...]

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