Sunday Morning Links

Yanks offense returns for 11-3 rout
Game 149: Andy's back

Here’s some Sunday morning links while we wait for Yankees-Orioles followed by Pats-Jets (my pick: Pats 27, Jets 13).

In light of the recent news that Joe Torre is stepping down as Dodgers manager, Chad Finn at the Boston Globe takes a look back at the 1998 Yankees.  Finn takes shots at the Yankees from time to time but it’s all in good fun and he’s one of the Boston writers who I can actually read when it comes to baseball.  He gets a shot in at Joe Morgan and calls Tim Raines a Hall of Famer, so he’s good in my book.

Within a piece at AOL Fanhouse Andrew Johnson has an interesting take on the Jeter situation comparing him to the Dave Matthews Band.  Once you read it, it does make some sense.  The best line of the whole piece however, is this “I’m a sportswriter, not an ethicist.”  If only more people that write or talk about sports for a living understood that.

Carl Crawford was upset for the criticism he took after getting thrown out at third base to end Tuesday nights game.  Personally I’m not buying that the Yankees will be all in on Crawford in the offseason, but if he got upset by this and he ends up in pinstripes, he’ll have quite an adjustment to the New York media.  It’s also interesting that the writer notes Crawford seemed pretty stung by the criticism coming from the Yankees.

Ken Burns is back in the baseball business as his new documentary “The Tenth Inning” is set to air on PBS on September 28th and 29th.  “The Tenth Inning” is a sequel to Burns’ 1994 “Baseball”, and will cover new things that have happened in baseball since the last film.  For many of the readers here the past 15 years or so covers a lot of the time we’ve been avidly following the game, so it is sure to be a very interesting watch.

Yanks offense returns for 11-3 rout
Game 149: Andy's back
  • Colin

    Sounds to me like Crawford needs to take a chill pill. Who cares how the Rays play? You ended the game on an attempt that would have had a negligible outcome to begin with.

    • Zack

      Just because you do something all the time, doesn’t mean it can’t be dumb.

      • V

        I still don’t think it was dumb. I bet RFers throw the ball away (allowing Crawford to go from 3rd to home) more often than they make the play, making it a +EV attempt.

        The Rays play an aggressive-force-the-opponent-to-make-a-mistake brand of baseball, and it’s working for them.

        • Zack

          If that’s your opinion that’s fine, but that’s not not his argument. His defense is that they do it all the time, therefore it can’t be dumb.

          If Girardi says bunting isn’t dumb because they do it all the time, does that mean bunting isn’t dumb because the pitcher might throw the ball away?

  • Zack

    “To end the game or not, we’re just not a team — okay, the Yankees, every little game like that, they probably go and get uptight and be mad about that kind of stuff. That’s not going to happen over here. You know that. So they need to understand the coach of the Rays, and then call somebody dumb after that.”

    Have fun in Anaheim.

    • JohnnyC

      Who is this “coach” of the Rays? I know Maddon’s the manager. Who is this coach we need to understand?

      • Zack

        Coach Hickey of coures. You don’t know him so you can’t criticize him for wrestling with a pitcher and injuring him.

  • Jerome S

    Note on the ’98 Yankees:
    While I’m sure they were probably incredibly fun to watch, after the Yankees clinched their playoff berth on August 31st or whatever don’t you think that there was a general feeling of well, how could this team not win the world series? Did it just feel like a formality, that they were going to kill the Padres?

    • vin

      To me, it absolutely felt like a formality. Not only were they winning every game they should, but it seemed like they were coming back to win games that they shouldn’t have won. They were an absolute treat to watch that year. Unbelievable.

      It is funny how little the regular season accomplishments mean if you don’t win the WS. Look at the ’01 Mariners for example. The won 116 games, not in an expansion year, in the same division with a 102 win A’s team behind them. Also, it’s not like the Rangers and Angels were historically awful. But they couldn’t seal the deal, and very few people outside Seattle care about that team anymore.

      • Pat D

        Yea, I still have so much nostalgia for the 1998 team. I remember the way the season began, with them on the west coast, losing most of them, Big Stein panicking after the first game. Ah, good times. I think I was on a vacation at the beginning of the year, too, I just can’t remember where/why.

        But, yea, that ’01 Mariners team. It’s a toss up between them and the 1906 Cubs as the biggest underachievers in baseball history, since neither won the World Series. The big deal everyone made about that team was that in successive years Johnson, Griffey and A-Rod had left, and they were still that good.

        But they just weren’t good enough.

  • Bob Stone

    Thanks Steve. Interesting links.

    Great column by Chad Finn. And . . . rather restrained comments from readers given that he PRAISED the Yankees, of all things. The Sox fans have truly given up at this point. I love it.

    Having lived in the Boston area for twenty years, I read the Globe all the time. I most enjoy reading the Sox fan angst and doom and gloom outlook (2004 aside). They have some excellent columnists like Rob Ryan, Amalie Benjamin, Chad Finn, Tony Massarotti and Dan Shaughnessy (whether you like them or agree with their viewpoints, I think they are terrific writers).

    • V

      Other than Shaughnessy, who really is rather stupid.

      • Bob Stone

        I enjoy him anyway despite his stupidity.

    • bexarama

      They have some excellent columnists like… Dan Shaughnessy…I think they are terrific writers

      (horrified face) (the rest are fine, though)

  • vin

    “Crawford said. “To me, they are dumb people because if they watch us play all year they would know that that’s what we do.

    So his argument is… it’s not a dumb play, you’re just a dumb person. Very mature. I don’t necessarily think it was an awful play on his part. Much less dumb than Gardner getting thrown out trying steal 3rd. He’s safe in that instance 999 out of 1,000.

    • Zack

      I believe Crawford’s response should have been: I’m rubber, you’re glue.

      • JobaWockeeZ

        Reach reference ftw.

    • China Joe

      But he gained almost no advantage by getting to third there. Mo doesn’t throw wild pitches, so the only advantage would be on an infield single, and that’s certainly not worth the risk of getting thrown out at third.

      And is there any worse excuse for doing something stupid than “that’s just the way I play?” If that’s Tampa-style baseball – giving away outs recklessly – then I welcome it.

      • Newbie

        Exactly. Mo has thrown three (!) wild pitches since 2002. Crawford is not scoring without a hit anyway, and he would score on any hit from second, so there really was no point.

      • V

        The advantage is if Golson throws a hail mary allowing Crawford to score on the throw.

  • JohnnyC

    Boston fans and media are so creatively funny when riffing on the Ysnkees. God, they’re just brilliant with the humorous tropes and turns of phrases. I guffaw heartily even as a Yankees fan. Strangely, their sense of humor ends within earshot of Friendly Fenway. An ex-coworker of mine who hailed from Boston loved to tell everyone in the office that he had a huge poster of Nomahh on the wall of his bedroom in his parents’ house. And, of course, he never tired of telling us that Nomahh was betta as well. Soon after Garciaparra was traded, I called him (he went back to Boston for another job)and needled him…all in fun, right, Chad Finn? In a serious tone, he replied, “Nomahh is dead to me now.” I didn’t ask about the poster.

    • Bob Stone

      Nomah was the most annoying guy to watch . . . ever! All the toe tapping and the wrist crap. I was so glad when he was traded. It saved ten minutes a game when the Yanks played the Sox.

      He also made one of the dumbest contract decisions ever, turning down four years $15 million (upped from 4 years $48 million). How’d he do after that??\

      At least he has Mia Hamm to cry to about it.

  • Bob Stone

    Every year I was in Boston (1989 to the present) it was fun to see the Sox fans get so excited in April and May when their team was ahead of the Yankees in the standngs. It was so much fun to point out to them it was only May, confidenttly knowing that we would beat them in September and October. Unfortunately that all changed in 2004. It hasn’t been the same since.

    Thank Mo we won the World Series last year so that we could claim that the Yankees (not the Sox) were the team of the decade.

    • Sweet Dick Willie

      it was fun to see the Sox fans get so excited in April and May when their team was ahead of the Yankees in the standngs

      How are the Sux like daylight savings time?

      Spring ahead, fall back.

      • Bob Stone


  • Pat D

    I’m a bit concerned about Burns spending too much time on the 2004 Red Sox, especially being worried about there being more time discussing them than the Yankees dynasty. Since he’s a Red Sox fan.

    I also just remember the way he covered the demise of the Brooklyn Dodgers in the original baseball, and I felt that it missed a lot of details about that. HBO’s documentary about the Brooklyn Dodgers, I always felt, hit the mark.

    • JohnnyC

      Well, to be objective, the 2004 comeback was historical in impact and achievement. But your point about Burns being a Sox fan is well-taken. He also has questionable taste in popular music, as evinced in his many interviews. Apparently, he has a weakness for ELO and considers Kansas a prog-rock group.

      • Zanath

        Hey, ELO is awesome.

      • Pat D

        Historical in achievement, yes. In impact…not so sure. Did anybody other than Red Sox fans and die-hard Yankee haters care that much?

        • JohnnyC

          Think of what it’s meant to a cadre of sports media headquartered in Bristol, Connecticut. Impact? Yes, absolutely.

        • Bob Stone

          It was historical in impact and achievement. Coming back from almost impossible odds and ending an 86 year championship drought. That’s huge impact and achievement.

      • Bob Stone

        I like ELO too.

  • JohnnyC

    I went to school with Ric Burns, Ken’s younger brother and fellow filmmaker. They were born in Baltimore and raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Ric was a Tigers fan and really couldn’t quite explain how Ken became a Sox fan. Since Ric has spent most of his life now in New York, he’s become…a Mets fan. As talented as the brothers are, there’s all kinds of fail in that family as far as baseball fandom.

  • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

    Comparing Jeter to Dave Matthews Band is extremely insulting to Jeter, regardless of how bad of a year he is having.

  • gargoyle

    I’ll take a pass on watching Ken Burns fellate the Boston Red Sox.