Fan Confidence Poll: September 14th, 2009


Record Last Week: 5-2 (42 RS, 26 RA)
Season Record: 92-52 (829 RS, 677 RA), 7.0 games up
Opponents This Week: vs. Anaheim (1 game), vs. Toronto (2 games),  @ Seattle (3 games)

Top stories from last week:

Please take a second to answer the poll below and give us an idea of how confident you are in the team. You can view the Fan Confidence Graph anytime via the nav bar above, or by clicking here. Thanks in advance for voting.

Given the team's current roster construction, farm system, management, etc., how confident are you in the Yankees' overall future?
View Results
Categories : Polls


  1. Still a 9. Hit a bit of a speed bump the first two games against Baltimore, but there’s no one this team can’t handle.

  2. Mike Pop says:

    No need for explanation. This team and the minors look better than they have in years. Although I do wish there was that stud #1 type guy in the minors. Damn you, Gerrit Cole.

    • Reggie C. says:

      I hear your lament of not having a sure-fire front-line pitcher in the farm. That’s not too much a concern as I know the current ML team has got Joba and Hughes under team control for a long time to come. Really, it’d be nice to graduate a ML quality LHP for the rotation , but having McAllister and Nova in consideration for the ’11 rotation is not bad.

      Good game from your ‘Boys yesterday. My G-Men held down there end so hopefully we’re looking at a 2-team race for NL East supremacy.

    • You’re not gonna be happy with NoMaas today.

      • Mike Pop says:

        Next start when he puts up a quality one, they will ignore.

      • Who did they want the Yanks to sign instead of AJ? 36 year-old Derek Lowe and his 93 ERA+ in the NL?

        Question his recent performance, question the length of the contract… But you have to offer up an alternative idea. And the length of the contract actually goes into that conversation. You were signing AJ for 5 years or going with… What, exactly? Derek Lowe for 4 years is most certainly not the correct answer.

        • One tiny and possibly fruitless nitpick: Lowe signed his 4/60 AFTER Burnett signed his 5/82.

          Had we let AJ sign with the Braves for the 5/80 they were reportedly willing to do, we might have been able to get Lowe for less than 4/60. According to this Sucka Got No Juice article, the Braves offered the 4th year to trump the 3/36 the Mets were offering Lowe in order to get him to sign quickly, likely to avoid ending up empty handed and to keep Lowe from a division rival.


          Burnett on a 5/82 is probably much better than Lowe on a 4/60, but what if the choices were Burnett on a 5/82 and Lowe on, hypothetically, say, 3/39? Does that change the calculus at all? No?

          • For me, no, since I think 36-38 year old Lowe would be bad in the AL East. I still choose AJ in that scenario.

            Also… Of course we’ll never know what the Yanks would have signed Lowe for, if they didn’t sign AJ and instead got a deal done with Lowe at some point… But I think it’s most reasonable to assume he signs a very similar contract with the Yanks to the one he got in Atlanta (i.e. If you’re going to engage in discussing this hypothetical, I think it’s more reasonable to assume he gets 4 years from the Yanks than 3 years).

          • Stryker says:

            Burnett on a 5/82 is probably much better than Lowe on a 4/60, but what if the choices were Burnett on a 5/82 and Lowe on, hypothetically, say, 3/39? Does that change the calculus at all? No?

            for me – no. aj burnett is aj burnett. injury questions aside, aj burnett’s stuff is soooo much better than derek lowe’s. throw away durability for a second and burnett beats lowe on stuff alone. i’d take a chance on a guy like him every time rather than a guy who’s 4 years older and hadn’t pitched in the AL – not to mention the AL East in 5 years.

            it’s kinda funny to be complaining about burnett under performing to our expectations when just about every other team in the majors would kill to have a guy with his stuff on their staff.

  3. Reggie C. says:


    I feel this is a championship team but Burnett’s maddening inconsistencies and recent awful stretch has got me concerned. Burnett is too good a pitcher to continue to meltdown like he has and I’m sure he’ll bounceback. I just hope he’s on at least his B level game come playoff time.

    The concern with Burnett was always health centered … I’m sure many of us didnt think results would be the problem. He’s a better pitcher than what he’s shown.

    • Makavelli says:

      Burnett and Joba are a BIG concern…

      Remember, we won’t be going up against Brian Bannister’s in the playoffs…we’ll be head-to-head with top teams with top pitching. If we’re throwing 2 guys out there with a combined 10.25 ERA against them in their past 9 starts combined…it’s putting a lot of pressure on our offense…which is exactly why we hadn’t gotten past the ALDS in the past several appearances…because of the lack of pitching…and pressure on the offense. CC is a beast…and Andy is solid…but the other 2 definitely have me worried.

      • AndrewYF says:

        Every team doesn’t have 5 Don Drysdales in the rotation like you’re making them out to be. The Tigers have one sure thing, Justin Verlander, and just as many if not more question marks than the Yankees. That’s just in the rotation. They also have an awful bullpen, and their lineup has one good hitter.

        Every single team in the major leagues have more concerns than the Yankees do. That’s what happens when you’re the best team in the game.

        • Makavelli says:

          I’m not saying we need 5 Don Drysdales in the rotation…but having 2 starters (one of them being your #2) combining for a 10.25 ERA doesn’t exactly boost your confidence…that’s all. The Sox also have Lester who has a 1.51 ERA in his last 5 starts as their #2 and Clay Buchholz has a 1.80 ERA in his last 3 starts…

          I’m not saying I’m exactly concerned with Detroit specifically…but the Angels and Red Sox both have very good offenses that could tear those bad numbers apart.

          • but the Angels and Red Sox both have very good offenses that could tear those bad numbers apart.

            And the Yankees can do the exact same thing to literally every pitcher in baseball, no matter how good.

          • Say Hey Willie says:

            Baseball is a game of streaks and small sample sizes. You are comparing good streaks vs bad streaks in small samples. Comparing a bad stretch from Yankee pitchers to a good stretch from Boston pitchers is not predictive of playoff success.

            • Makavelli says:

              No, it’s not…but Boston has an entirely new rotation now compared to their “bad stretches” so to speak. They had so much depth that apparently whenever a pitcher had a bad stretch they could just release them or put them on the “DL”. We’ve basically had the same rotation all year. I was comparing our recent rotation to the rotation they have right now. Beckett has been horrible…but Lester and Buchholz look solid. If Dice K goes to his 2008 style…it could be bad.

              Regardless…I’m not concerned to the point where I’m throwing in the towel or anything…I gave a respectable 7. I’m concerned with 2 of our pitchers…that’s it.

      • Zack says:

        “we won’t be going up against Brian Bannister’s in the playoffs”

        Beckett has been just as bad as AJ for about the same stretch, just saying.

        • And the Yankees usually hit Beckett very well (if they do, indeed eventually face Boston).

          • Zack says:

            True. We all remember 03, but I think he has a career ERA of over 5 against the Yankees.

              • Makavelli says:

                Kenny Rogers had a 6.07 ERA in 109.2 innings in his career and we all know how he pitched against us in the 06 ALDS…

                Just saying…you can’t always go by that. And Beckett is far younger and better than Kenny Rogers was as well…

                • Yep, you’re right. But shouldn’t you also be turning that around and saying that Burnett or Chamberlain could do the exact same thing to some other team?

                • Chris says:

                  Jeff Weaver had a 5.18 ERA with St Louis in 2006, and then posted a 2.42 ERA in the playoffs. You just have to get hot at the right time.

                • Makavelli says:

                  Yes, you technically could. Only difference is I follow the Yankees a lot more than I follow the other teams…so I’m not quite sure what was wrong with those other guys before…but I’m sure it wasn’t close to the tweaking scenario with Joba. We’re all hoping that’s the case with both of them though.

                • Chris says:

                  What was wrong with Jeff Weaver is that he sucked. He wasn’t just struggling. He objectively was a horrible pitcher for a long long time. Not just for 2006, but for most of the time before and after. Here are his ERAs from 2003-2007: 5.99, 4.01, 4.22, 5.76, 6.20. He didn’t pitch in 2008. Actually, he did, but only in AAA – and had a 6.17 ERA there!

                  There is at least evidence that Joba and AJ can be great. There wasn’t any for Weaver. In Jeff Weaver’s best 4 game stretch in the regular season he had a 3.42 ERA. Then he pitched a 5 game stretch in the playoffs with a 2.42 ERA.

    • The concern with Burnett was always health centered … I’m sure many of us didnt think results would be the problem. He’s a better pitcher than what he’s shown.

      Meh, there were some valid concerns about Burnett’s actual performance as well as his health. AJ is the very definition of a streaky pitcher. Virtually all of the narratives on both sides of the Melky debate can be said about AJ.

      Coming into this season, he had stretches of stunning, shocking, call your buddy to tell him to watch this game dominance. And, he had stretches of utter ineptitude. This is AJ. This is what we signed up for.

      If AJ was just utterly dominant on a constant basis but had only the injury concern as his sole red flag, he wouldn’t be AJ. He’d be Ben Sheets. This is what you get with a two-pitch pitcher who relies on nasty, filthy stuff: He doesn’t really set up hitters tactically, he just throws filthy stuff and relies on the quality of his stuff beating you. When it’s on, he’s untouchable. When it’s not, he’s pedestrian.

      All that being said, I still think we lose two games this postseason, tops.

      • Makavelli says:

        Compared to the other potential #2′s…

        Good AJ > Edwin Jackson
        Edwin Jackson > Bad AJ

        Jon Lester > Good AJ
        Jon Lester > Bad AJ

        Good AJ = Good Kazmir (coin flip)
        Good AJ > Bad Kazmir
        Good Kazmir > Bad AJ
        Bad AJ + Bad Kazmir = Coin Flip

        The good news is Andy Pettitte as a #3 is better than almost all other #3′s perhaps maybe a “Good Buchholz”…the bad news is we haven’t seen “Good Joba” since the Bush Adminitration or so it seems…

        • I think we could argue that Edwin Jackson = Bad A.J., especially considering how poorly he’s pitched of late.

          • Makavelli says:

            He has pitched pretty poorly as of late…but his 5.01 ERA is still better than AJ’s 7.67 ERA in their past 5 starts. And Jackson is still 3-1 in those starts while AJ is the opposite at 1-3.

            • king of fruitless hypotheticals says:

              no argument in a vaccum:

              Good AJ = Good Kazmir (coin flip)
              Good AJ > Bad Kazmir
              Good Kazmir > Bad AJ
              [Bad AJ + Bad Kazmir][our offense][their offense] = WE WIN

          • Doug says:

            i guess you think we’ll just outscore ‘em, huh

            • Yup. I think that in the postseason, when our pitching is on, with our offense we can beat everyone in baseball by 6+ runs every night.

              In the poststeason, when our pitching is NOT on, with our offense we can beat everyone in baseball by 1 or 2 runs every night.

              • Doug says:

                hope so.

                personally, not sure we’ll be able to score 6+ runs consistently enough to overcome our pitching if it’s not on. especially in a short series.

            • Makavelli says:

              Even though our offense is far superior…Bad Edwin Jackson is 3-1 with a 5.01 ERA in his last 5 starts while AJ is 1-3 with a 7.67 ERA in his last 5 starts.

              Which leads us to believe…the Tigers in fact win their Edwin Jackson bad starts via the bat…while the Yankees may have a harder time catching up with AJ’s woes.

              • Confidence Level: 10

                Edwin Jackson is a good but inconsistent pitcher. AJ Burnett is a good but inconsistent pitcher. Their respective inconsistencies on their respective teams does not scare be, Makavelli. It just doesn’t. I can’t see how it should scare anyone.

                We are a juggernaut.

                • Makavelli says:

                  I agree. I am confident. I put a 7 though only due to our starting pitching. Doesn’t necessarily mean I’m expecting to lose…just throwing out facts, actually hoping, that you’ll come back with some better news.

                • just throwing out facts, actually hoping, that you’ll come back with some better news.

                  Oh, that again. That’s so tired.

                  We’re not your therapist, dude.

                • Makavelli says:

                  When did I say you were my therapist?

                  I’m not allowed to bring up factual information that I’m concerned with because you’re not my therapist?

                  It’s not like if you DON’T come back with better news I’m going to jump off the GW Bridge…

                  “Chill Out” – Arnold Schwarzenneger in Batman Forever

                • Chris says:

                  We’re not your therapist, dude.

                  Actually, we are. The bill will be sent shortly.

              • Chris says:

                ERA isn’t everything. And Win-Loss is (basically) meaningless – especially in such a small sample size.

                In his last 4 starts, Jackson has given up a .879 OPS (.761 for AJ). Jackson has a 17:10 K:BB ratio (26:10 for AJ). They’ve both given up 5 HR.

                • Doug says:

                  bet if you go back one more start, things won’t look so rosy

                • Chris says:

                  Why is 5 starts any better than 4 or 6? We’re picking arbitrary small sample sizes, so I’m picking mine. You can pick yours.

                  Here are the last 6 starts:

                  OPS: Jackson: .864 AJ: .814
                  K:BB: Jackson: 25:13 AJ: 37:14
                  HR: Jackson: 7 AJ: 8

                • Doug says:

                  that’s fine. just thought it interesting picking 4.

                • Makavelli says:

                  Difference is that AJ has a 4.50 ERA in 6 innings (1 start) against Detroit while Edwin Jackson has a 1.38 ERA in 13 innings (2 starts) against the Yankees this season.

                • Chris says:

                  I picked 4 because the numbers looked better than 5, but I think it illustrates how useless some of these small sample sizes are.

                • Doug says:

                  yes, but we haven’t faced him since july, when he was, well, actually still good

                • Doug says:

                  that it does, chris

                • Chris says:

                  Difference is that AJ has a 4.50 ERA in 6 innings (1 start) against Detroit while Edwin Jackson has a 1.38 ERA in 13 innings (2 starts) against the Yankees this season.

                  I thought that the key was how they’re performing now, not what they did 2 (or 5) months ago?

                • Makavelli says:

                  It is…but they’re both terrible right now is what I’m saying. But we’ve had some bad luck against pitchers who are capable of being good although are doing terrible lately…

                  Cliff Lee at the beginning of the season, Scott Kazmir (when on the Rays), Halladay (recently), etc.

                  Just brought it up because even when decent pitchers are horrible just before facing us…they can bring out their A game against the Yankees…though hopefully AJ does it to them instead.

                • king of fruitless hypotheticals says:

                  …unless they pitch complete games, its irrelevant.

                  how many times have we gored the soft underbelly that is the opponent’s bullpen?

                  i’m taking a nap–wake me when its the 7th inning of the first playoff game…

        • And no, Makavelli. The correct breakdown is:

          Good AJ >>>> All other pitchers (ALL of them) >>> Bad AJ

          Good AJ is not worse than Good Lester. Good AJ is not equal to Good Kazmir. Those statements are patently ridiculous.

          Good AJ is an untouchably good pitcher. Good AJ beats EVERYONE. Good AJ pitches amazingly well. You’re being ridiculous.

          • Makavelli says:

            Lester has a 1.51 ERA in his past 5 starts. I can’t see Good AJ being that much better than that? And Good Kazmir has shutdown material as well…

            Perhaps the Kazmir comparison wasn’t that great but Lester has been ridiculous lately.

            • Lester has a 1.51 ERA in his past 5 starts. I can’t see Good AJ being that much better than that?

              Good AJ Burnett, June 14th to July 8th, 2009:

              5 starts (4-1), 1.34 ERA, .193/.294/.277 against


              That took me like 15 seconds to look up, Makavelli.

              • Makavelli says:

                Lester is –

                4-0, 1.51 ERA, .164/.233/.230 against

                in his last 5 right now.

                Regardless of the time it took you to look up…all but the ERA has Lester still better.

                • Mike Pop says:

                  Well Lester is a great freakin’ pitcher. That’s why we are praying for good A.J. to show up, because he matches up just as well with Lester.

                  Good A.J. does, not bad A.J.

                • Chris says:

                  Of Lester’s last 5 starts, 2 were against the Rays (who’ve given up), 2 were against the White Sox (who’ve given up) and 1 was against the Blue Jays (who’ve given up).

                  I see a common thread in those teams.

                • Ed says:

                  The difference in those stat lines is roughly 2 singles, 1 double, and 3 walks per hundred batters. Not much of a difference.

                • Makavelli says:


                  I agree with those teams…but in AJ’s June 14th – July 8th span he faced the non-existant Mets twice with Florida in between…the Blue Jays…and the Twins.

                  Let’s just agree that when they’re both on their both extremely great.

                  The thing is…Lester doesn’t seem to get AS BAD as AJ when he’s “doing bad”…AJ seems to be really really good or really really bad while Lester is really really good…or good/mediocre.

                • Chris says:

                  The Mets were 0.5 GB when in the second game (4 GB during the 1st game). Florida was 4 GB. Toronto was 7 GB. Minnesota was 3.5 GB. So 4 of the 5 games were against teams that were still (at the time) fighting for a playoff spot.

                  Just about every pitcher is more consistent than AJ. The hope is that he gets hot in the next few starts and maintains that through the playoffs (or gets hot in his first playoff start).

              • Mike Pop says:

                I love that comment tommie.

                That stretch was amazing.

            • Ed says:

              AJ Burnett, 5 games from June 14th to July 8th: 1.34 ERA.

  4. Makavelli says:

    I’ll give it a 7. Mainly because of this post I made in the last thread.

    I don’t like our pitching right now. CC has been great. Andy has been great on the road and very good in the 2nd half but he last start was ehh…I’m VERY worried about AJ and Joba for the playoffs. The Sox seem to have found their stable 1-3 guys for the playoffs just in time while ours seems to be formulated, we just don’t know what we’re going to be getting…

  5. Jon says:

    Overall I’m the lowest I’ve felt in a few weeks. Everything but AJ is just fine. I don’t really care about joba for the rest of the season because he may be a non factor in the playoffs. But if AJ doesn’t fix himself we arent going very far in october.

    • Makavelli says:


      Agreed. We will probably need a #4 in the ALCS and WS…but we can’t worry about our #4 starter when we have a #2 who is equally as bad at the moment.

  6. 9 as always. The offense and the bullpen are making me pretty happy, CC’s doing his thing, and I’d say it’s been a generally good year for the MiL system. However, I am a tiny bit concerned with the starters outside of Sabathia. I do have faith in Burnett righting the ship before the season is over, but I’m fearing the regression to the norm that’s going to happen for Andy Pettitte.

    • Zack says:

      regression to the norm for Andy would mean what, 6IP 3ER (4.50era)? I can live with that when hes matched up against another team’s #3

    • Bob Stone says:

      I have to echo your sentiments and evaluation on all counts but one. Andy has been healthy and has a history of good second halves when he is. His second half meltdown last year was due to a very sore shoulder. I think he has already regressed to his historic, healthy, second half norm. So, I am optimistic that Andy will continue his winning ways right through the playoff.

      That being said, I dropped my confidence level this week from 10 to 9. I have been at 9 almost all year except early on. The last few weeks I got caught up in the euphoria of all their wins and went crazy by voting 10.

    • Ed says:

      Meh, this is the regression to the norm for his unusually bad May and June. He’s always much better in the second half anyway – last year was the fluke with the injury issues.

      Career second half ERA – 3.61, even after last season’s atrocious 2nd half.

    • Mattingly's Love Child says:

      I’m at an 8 for roughly the same reasons, plus Joba being a complete unknown at this point. 3/4ths of the playoff rotation are question marks for me. And I know other teams have just as many, if not more questions. But in the crapshoot of the playoffs, my confidence would be higher with 2/4ths of the rotation being solid.

  7. Kiersten says:

    9. Andy doesn’t worry me with the way he’s been pitching and his track record in the postseason. AJ is a concern, but I think he’ll turn it around. Like someone else said, he’s too good of a pitcher to be off his game into October.

  8. Andy In Sunny Daytona says:

    I give a one, two , three, four, five, six, sevem, eight, nine, TEN!!!

    As does Ganesh;index=5

  9. Doug says:

    A 7 for me…..

    Glad everyone’s so optimistic about AJ pitching well in October because he’s “too good of a pitcher” not to. Problem is, he’s not a great pitcher, he’s a pitcher with great stuff. Stuff that he has a lot of trouble harnessing. And he’s a pitcher who’s never pitched a postseason game before. Crossing my fingers that you guys are right, but if he’s this inconsistent in meaningless (essentially) September games, not overly confident he’s going to be able to snap his fingers and just right the ship once pressure-filled October rolls around.

    • Bob Stone says:

      AJ is my only significant concern right now. It’s my “only” concern, but it’s huge because his performance will be critical to our results in the playoffs.

    • Makavelli says:

      What’s real bad about it is his walks aren’t necessarily high and terrible. While 8 walks in his last 5 games isn’t remarkable…it certainly seems as though it’s not his control.

      The 33 hits, 8 home runs, and 7 doubles in 29.1 innings makes this that much worse. Not to mention he has a 5.11 ERA on the road all year (not just the 2nd half)…

      His K’s are still there…but with these results…I really don’t care about his strike outs one bit right now. In fact, I think that just contributes to how concerning this really is…

      • How are lots of strikeouts a bad thing? I’m most concerned about the homers; that’s the striking thing and if Burnett cuts down on them, he’ll be fine. That’s a lot more easily said than done, though.

        • Makavelli says:

          It’s bad because it shows that he still may have his “stuff” or is at least striking out batters at the same pace he was when he was “good”. The low walks suggest it’s not control…then combined with the high strike outs…you scratch your head and wonder what is going on…I didn’t mean it as though striking out batters was horrible PERIOD…but when using it as a tool to figure out what’s going on…it’s only confusing you more I guess.

      • Doug says:

        he K/BB ratio is the lowest it’s been since 2001. oh, and his OPSA is the highest ever (in a season > 100 innings).

  10. Keanu Reeves says:

    10 – I get to watch the best team in baseball every night. Until another team proves that they have fewer question marks than the Yankees, it’s still a ten. Not to mention the farm system has a lot to be excited about.

  11. Jersey says:

    ~2, but only because we don’t have our own channel on ESPN.

  12. pete says:

    There are things that concern me, sure, but objectively, we have the best team in baseball by a good margin. In the toughest division, our record is 5 games better than any other team in all of baseball. Of course a short series scares me a bit, but that’s because the sheer unpredictability of a series that favors small sample size scares me. CC is better than any pitcher he could face other than Verlander (and its close there, and i would take yanks o vs. verlander than tigers o vs. cc, but anyway) but he could still have a bad day. AJ could have a meltdown like we’ve seen recently, sure, but he could also go 8 shutout innings and strike out 13. Pettitte matches up against any other team’s 3rd starter, and there’s a decent chance that joba’s 4 innings 2 runs + our bullpen will beat any other team’s 4th, considering the fact that we may end up w/ 8 guys w/ 20 hrs and 11 w/ 10. The biggest concern for this team is the very nature of the playoffs. But confidence = 10 doesn’t mean “we will definitely win the world series, barring some unforeseen injury or something,” it means “we have the best team and should be the favorites in the playoffs.” Also, while great offenses in the past few years haven’t been reliable to get us through, having 11 guys on our team who can hit hrs, and 8 legitimate threats means that we don’t necessarily need to rely on our “work the count, get on base, get the starter out of there” methods because there is a good chance that we’ll get one or two hrs. That, plus CC, pretty much equals a win.

  13. Fun Fact of the day: The Yankees September 28-29-30 home series against the Royals is their final scheduled tilt against an AL Central team. If they go either 3-0 or 2-1 against Kansas City, the Yankees will be the only team in all of baseball to have single digit losses against an entire division.

    We’re currently 23-8 against the AL Central. All 29 other teams have at least 10 aggregate losses against all three divisions in their league.

  14. mryankee says:

    Offense confidence (high 8-9) bullpen confidence(high 8-9 when hughes-robertson-mariano and coke pitch) starting rotation after CC (LOW-4-5). Oranization confidence(middle 6-7). I am very concerned about this rotation ib the post season-just does not inspire confidence after CC. AJ Burnett has really been terrible lately and you can live with bad if your Jose Beckett who has post season success to fall back on. Aj though just cannot seem to a: find intersst in pitching against the dreg of the league(baltimore-for one) 2: cannot harness his stuff for a guy locked up for four more years that is troubling. I am not confident in the organization because they did not aquire another quality starter at the deadline. There handling of Joba has been amatuerish at best and completly humiliating to be honest. How can guys who are paid so much money to hanlde pitchers screw it up so much?

    Why not copy what Boston did with Jon Lester-or Detroit with Rick Porcello? I am sure there are more examples

  15. mryankee says:

    Hey nice luck for the Yankees Weaver tonight and Halladay tomorrow-that sucks

  16. leokitty says:

    I voted 8 because I’m terrified bad AJ will show up at the worst time and I can’t decide if Andy’s August was a blip or for real.

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