Monthly Archives: May 2008

YANKEES VERSUS METS

OK, so I didn’t get around to writing a preview of the subway series, but it didn’t matter. I couldn’t predict that the Yanks would get stomped out by their crosstown rivals.

So here are the Yankees and Mets broken down by position as of right now

Catcher-Molina/Moeller vs. Schneider

Posada dwarfs Schneider in Homeruns and RBI’s. Schneider is a better defensive catcher than Posada but this is about the overall quality of the player. Oh, wait, Posada is hurt…

WINNER:METS

1st Base- Giambi vs. Delgado

The Most Pathetic Position for either team….Each player is a shell of who they once were. Both guys can pick the ball better than anybody else (probably because they don’t want to have to run after it). Giambi is hitting .191 with 8 hr’s and 21 RBI’s while Delgado is hitting .230 with 5 hr’s and 19 RBI’s….both equally bad

WINNER- YANKEES Hey, Giambi wears a gold thong

2nd Base- Cano vs. Castillo

Cano is beginning to turn it around at the dish and Castillo isn’t hitting the way he used to. Cano has great range at second and will only hit better when A-rod carries the load.

WINNER-YANKEES

3rd base- A-Rod vs. Wright

This may be the toughest position to pick…but A-Rod is A-Rod. He has played excellent defense this year (i think he should win the gold glove) and is a bright spot in a dismal Yankees lineup. Wright is the best defensive third basemen around today. He is outstanding player who is a perennial all-star, but, he is no Alex Rodriguez. Within two years Wright will be on the same level as A-Rod, but he is not quite there yet.

WINNER-YANKEES

Shortstop- Jeter vs. Reyes

This is another tough one…Jeter is a first-ballot hall of famer and Reyes is the 5 tool player who plays on the island that is long (thats Long Island for those who have lost track). Jeter has the rings and Reyes has the bright future and a long career ahead of him. So for this one I am going based on the stats

Jeter = .314 2hr’s 21RBI’s 1sb 21runs scored and a on base percentage of .351

Reyes= .267 4hr’s 18 RBI’s 12 SB and 21 runs scored and an on base percentage of .332

This is tough..right now Jeter has the edge in hitting but I would have to give the fielding to Reyes…Jeter is a team leader who is always the one to step in when there is pressure from the media (he always says the right thing) and Reyes has hidden from the media at times (a la Billy Wagner). If I were building a team for the future I would go with Reyes but this is all about now.

WINNER- YANKEES

Lf- Damon/Matsui vs. Alou/ Chavez

Matsui will hit over .300 with 25 hr’s and Damon is a run-scoring machine at the top of the line-up. Alou is a great hitter but struggles to stay healthy.

WINNER- YANKEES

CF- Cabrera vs. Beltran

Beltran is a Five-tool player who is stuggling s far this season. Melky Cabrera is the best defensive center fielder in the American League but he has been struggling at the plate.

WINNER- METS

RF- At the beginning of the year most New Yorkers had never heard of Ryan Church. Now he is the best right fielder in town. Bobby Abreu is not himself at the plate and struggles playing fly balls hit near the outfield wall. I like how Church plays the game hard everyday. I’m not saying that Abreu doesn’t play hard but Church makes up for the holes in his game with hard-nosed play.

WINNER- METS

SP- The Yankees have one solid starting pitcher- Wang, other than that, they have no other trustworthy pitcher. Pettitte hasn’t won in a month, Mussina throw slower than a middle-schooler and don’t even get me started on the rest of the rotation. The Mets rotation isn’t great but they have Santana, Maine, and Perez, who are better than what the bombers have

WINNER- METS

Bullpen- The Yankees bullpen had been excellent of late…until they played the Mets. Other than that the bullpen has been pretty solid. Farnsworth hasn’t been Farnsworthless and Joba and Mo make it a seven inning ballgame. The Mets have a great closer in Billy “Why You Talkin to Me” Wagner but the bridge to get to him has struggled

WINNER- YANKEES

Mets-4

Yankees-6

Now I feel better about what happened this weekend

Props go to Jon Lester for throwing a no-no….the Mets for kicking the crap out of the Yanks….Lebron James for playing against the Celtics by himself…the Spurs, Celtics, Pistons and Lakers for advancing

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D’Antoni is all about the money

Mike D’ Antoni has officially signed with the Knicks for a 4 year 24 million dollar deal. I personally think he is nuts for taking the job and this proves that he is all about the money. If he wanted to contend for a championship he would have went to the Bulls who have a perfect team for the run and gun offense that he runs. I would have loved to see Tyrus Thomas and Ben Gordon in his system, but instead the world will now get to see Eddie Curry huff and puff his way down the floor and Nate Robinson try to pretend that he is Steve Nash. It ain’t gonna work and if the Knickerbockers win a championship in the next 5 years I will eat my own sock.

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RAIN RAIN GO AWAY….ON SECOND THOUGHT…STAY

The Yankees were rained out today but it may actually be a blessing in disguise.  The Yankees need a rest after playing some hard games against the Indians and the Tigers.  The big help is that the Bombers can now switch up the rotation they way they want it to be.  Pettitte is scheduled to pitch on Monday, with Chein Ming-Wang following him up on Tuesday against the Rays.  Mussina will most likely be after Wang.    The Mets are the next opponent and it looks like Darrell Rasner (who has been pitching outstanding baseball) will open up the series for the Yanks this Friday.  Look for my preview of the Subway Series later in the week.

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THE TOP TEN BASEBALL MOVIES OF ALL TIME

The title says it all…here are my top ten baseball movies of all time.

#1 Bull Durham-

Great cast and even better characters (Nuke Laloosh, Crash Davis, Annie Savouy) Kevin Costner plays a Minor League catcher who is brought in to help an up and coming pitcher with a golden arm, but no brains. Always remember that baseball is a simple game; “You throw the ball, you hit the ball, and you catch the ball.”

#2 Major League

(1,two,and three put together even though three wasn’t that good) Again, great cast and great characters. The down and out team with an evil owner and some crazy players (Wild Thing, Cerrano, Willie Mays Hayes) is in the cellar and climbs out to win the pennant.

#3 The Sandlot-

Smalls, Benny The Jet Rodriguez, The Beast, The Great Bambi…I could go on and on

#4 A League of their Own-

Hands down the best line in baseball movie history is uttered by Tom Hanks: “Are you crying?…There’s no crying in baseball!” This movie does a great job of entertaining the audience while also showing a historical time in sports. I always hate it when Kit’s team wins in the end.

#5 The Natural-

“Pick me a Winner” Roy Hobbs is a mythical ball-player who comes out of nowhere to lead the New York Knights. Hobbs has a past that nobody knows, except for one sportswriter (Robert Duvall). Hobbs uses his lightning struck bat “Wonderboy” to shatter some lights in one of the best scenes in baseball movie history.

#6 Field of Dreams-

Kevin Costner builds it, and “he” comes. Along the way he meets some characters from baseball’s past and fights the foreclosure of his farm. If you didn’t cry when his dad shows up you have no heart. I even heard Kim Jong-iL cried when he saw it.

#7 Pride of the Yankees-

A timeless classic in which Gary Cooper portrays the life of Lou Gehrig. Cooper (who looks at lot like Gehrig) delivered a great performance that showed Gehrig on and off the field. Babe Ruth played himself.

#8- 61*-

Billy Crystal directed this great movie which everyone could enjoy. Barry Pepper (Roger Maris) and Thomas Jane (Mickey Mantle) look just like the men that they portray. This movie focuses on the summer of 1961 when Mantle and Maris chase the homerun record by Babe Ruth. This film does a great job of showing how Maris suffered under all of the pressure from the fans and the media.

#9-The Bad News Bears (the original with Walter Matthau)-

The worst team in the league with the drunkest manager of any Little League team anywhere. Matthau tries to recruit better ballplayers as he tries to turn the team around.

#10 The Scout-

Brendan Fraser players a young country kid who throws over a hundred miles an hour. He is found by a scout (Albert Brooks) who tries to control and help the young kid get to pitch in the Major Leagues. The last part of the movie is great with Fraser climbing to the roof of Yankee Stadium to try to get out of pitching the game.

Just missing the cut- Eight Men Out, For the Love of the Game, Cobb

One note: The documentary “Baseball” by Ken Burns isn’t on the list because it is so well made that it blows away anything on this list.

Write a comment, tell me your favorites.

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JOBA AND HIS FIST PUMP

So more and more players have had it with Joba Chamberlain pumping his fist. I say to them-DEAL WITH IT!

Seriously, it is a joy to see players who react like that when they accomplish something. Plenty of pitchers and hitters have done it before so leave him alone. If you don’t like it, don’t strikeout. I’m talking to you David Dellucci. Good for you that you didn’t do anything when you hit the home run, thats your style. Manny stares at all of his hits because its his style. Every player reacts differently to the situations they are put in and should only be judged if they are actually physically hurting someone else; not if they are hurting another player’s feelings.

Joba is not crazy…these guys were crazy-

Turk Wendell-

The guy wore animal claws and teeth for a necklace. He also would crouch when the catcher stood up, slam the rosin bag down after an out, and also leap over the baseline when leaving the field. He was a great guy who spoke his mind. He became a fan favorite when he joined the Mets in the prime of his career.

John “off his” Rocker-

He would scream as he threw the pitch towards the plate. He would have been a raging lunatic even without taking steriods. He also spoke his mind but didn’t say stuff any New Yorker or any good minded person would want to hear.

Mark “The Bird” Fidych-

Probably one of the greatest characters of the 70’s. This guy would talk to the baseball before he threw it…it worked for a little while, he won the Rookie of the Year in 1976.

Wade Boggs-

Not really crazy, but arguably the most superstitious person to play the game. His most famous superstition was eating chicken before every game. He also woke up at the same time every single day and took exactly 150 ground balls in practice. He was even rumored to have drank over 50 beers on a cross-country flight once. Everything paid off with Boggs being inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2005.

My point is that everybody has a personality, whether it is leaping over the baseline (Wendell), screaming at batters (John Rocker), or eating chicken (Boggs). The many different personalities that baseball has seen have helped make it the great game that it is today. God Forbid we watch someone who actually looks like they are enjoying the game. Keep on pitching Joba, and remember to be yourself and…oh yeah…

Keep pumping those fists!

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I Feel Stupid…and Man of the Year

So a few days after I say “if Cano doesn’t hit, Alberto Gonzalez is gonna take his job”, the Yankees made a move…..They sent down Gonzalez and reactivated Wilson Betemit who had been on the DL.

Since I was dumb, I wanted to write about some other dumb things in sports:

-Fans who only yell “you suck” to players…real original…get some better material…. study anything Red Sox fans do to Arod..remember those blond-haired masks and stripper poles last year?

-Red Sox Fans who yell at little kids wearing Yankees gear….sadly, it’s happened

-throwing a perfectly good hat on the ice when a player gets a hat-trick….my question is where do all those hats go?

-sticking with hockey….why throw a perfectly good squid onto the ice? (Detroit Red Wings fans…I’m talkin’ to you)

-QuestTech (baseball’s system that monitors umpires)- Seriously, let the umpires call the game without second guessing themselves

-curling- see my earlier post about the olympics

…………………………….

I would like to take this opportunity to nominate Ozzie Guillen for man of the year. His expletive- laced rant is something that writers dream about. If I read between the curses correctly, Guillen said that he is sick of being compared to the Cubs who haven’t won the World Series in a hundred years. God Bless a sports guy that isn’t afraid of being politically incorrect. Speaking of that…should I have even said “God Bless”? I’m waiting for an atheist to comment on my wall about it…. Either Hank Steinbrenner (who I will nominate soon) or Ozzie Guillen will win the Man of the Year award……You can count on that

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Yankees lose more than just a game or two (again) and Chicks dig the long ball

So far the Yankees’ casualty list is pretty staggering.

Jorge Posada out 6 weeks

A-rod on 15 day DL

Phil Hughes out until July

Brian Bruney out until September (and that would be pushing it)

The Yanks got pummeled by the Tigers who rolled through the Bronx, making the Yankees look like a minor league team.  The Bombers couldn’t do anything right, the starters got smashed and the bullpen got beaten into the ground.

Thank God the Mariners rolled into town…they can’t hit and their fielding has done them in (they made four errors in the first game of the series)

Other things I’ve realized this weekend:

Ichiro is a Hall of Famer, no questions asked

Mike Mussina has quietly won 4 games

Branden Webb is the best pitcher in baseball (he’s 7-0)

Chien Ming Wang is the best starting pitcher in the American League (6-0)

Robinson Cano needs to pick it up because I seriously believe that if he doesn’t hit, he might lose his job to Alberto Gonzalez who filled in for Jeter by hitting around .360

Micah Owings (SP D-backs) has realized that “chicks dig the long ball”

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