Yankees Suck postsThursday June 12, 2014
The Only Time I'd Choose the New York Yankees
This is a photo my brother-in-law took of a game of 'Apples to Apples' he and his family were playing recently:
That's about the only time I'd ever choose the New York Yankees.
The Yankees arrived in town on Tuesday this week a bit on the ropes, having gone 2-4 the previous week. The Mariners? The opposite. They'd won 8 of their last 11. And in the first game we had Iwakuma going. We had a 34-29 record and +34 run differential; they had a 31-31 record and were lucky to have it with a -33 run differential. If the season had ended on Tuesday, it was the Mariners, not the Yankees, who would've wound up in the playoffs. I can't remember the last time I could say that on June 10.
So what happens? We lose the first two games, 3-2 and 4-0. Jeter is given awards and prizes, since this is his last go-round here, and Seattle fans applaud him since he plays the game “the right way.” Don't get me started. Joe Posnanski has a word for it: Jeteration. It's just embarrassing. Have some dignity, Seattle. Jeter has enough rings and supermodels to keep him warm on cold nights. He doesn't need your tepid approval. Better to boo and end it.
Even with those two losses, the M's have a better record and a way better run differential than the Evil Empire. But we've let the Yankees back into the conversation.
Ol' Man Jeter
Ol' Man Jeter (to the tune of 'Ol' Man River')
Ol' man Jeter
That ol' man Jeter
He must see something
But he don't hit nothing
He just keeps whiffin'
He keeps on whiffin' along
He don't hit triples
And he don't hit homers
And most of his games now
End in oh-fers
And ol' man Jeter,
He keeps on whiffin' along
He gets weary
And misplays grounders
And all around him
The Yankees flounder
But ol' man Jeter
He just keeps whiffin' along
With apologies to Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern, not to mention Derek Jeter, who deserves a better end—as we all do. He's currently hitting .250 with a .290 slugging percentage. (Lifetime: .312/.445; although he did go 2-4 yesterday with a double in another Yankees loss.) The Yankees are 11-14 when he plays, 5-1 when he doesn't. Joe Girardi's thoughts here. If Jeter's history is indicative, he'll turn it around. If the last years of great ballplayers are indicative, he won't.
UPDATE (5/8): I need to shut my mouth. A day after I posted this, Jeter went deep for the first time this year, and for only the second time in the last two years. He's now at .262/.336/.327. A .663 OPS. Plus he's got a new surfboard. So Cal agrees with him, apparently.
He don't hit triples/ And he don't hit homers ...
Your Red Sox/Yankees Quote/Quiz of the Day
About which trade/signing was the following said by Yankees owner George Steinbrenner?
We understand that John Henry must be embarrassed, frustrated, and disappointed by his failure in this transaction. Unlike the Yankees, he chose not to go the extra distance for his fans in Boston.
- A) Roger Clemens
- B) Johnny Damon
- C) Jacoby Ellsbury
- D) Alex Rodriguez
Answer in the Comments field.
Current Yankees Batting Leaders
This is how the current Yankees batting leaders look on ESPN.com after three games:
I know, three games, but it cracked me up. Not sure how Brian Roberts gets the HR title with “0.” Alphabetical by first name? Why not Alfonso Soriano? He has zero, too! They all have zero!
Meanwhile, over at SB Nation, Grant Brisbee writes the following about the apparent loss of strength in the Yankees' shortstop and current RBI leader:
That's the same thing our own Steven Goldman saw all spring, as Jeter grounded into double plays at what would be a historic pace in the regular season.
And there's no way the Yankees are going to bench him. He's the kid in the Twilight Zone episode “It's a Good Life” with the god powers. Everyone's going to tell him nice things. Eventually someone's turning into a jack-in-the-box. Which would still have more range than Jeter.
Yankees Suck Reason #38: Keeping Vic Power in the Minors
Vic Power had his best years with the Athletics in 1955, when he hit .319 and slugged .505, with 34 doubles, 10 triples and 19 homers.
John Rosengren, who has written two previous books on baseball, has now published a third: “The Fight of Their Lives: How Juan Marichal and John Roseboro Turned Baseball's Ugliest Brawl into a Story of Forgiveness and Redemption.” It's worth checking out. (Disclosure: Rosengren's a friend.)
Most baseball fans know about the incident. In the midst of a tight pennant race in August 1965, Juan Marichal, a future Hall of Fame pitcher, who was at the plate, took a baseball bat to the head of catcher John Roseboro. Rosengren's book is the story behind those 10 seconds of infamy.
The most interesting aspect of the book, though, may be the sections on the history of dark-skinned Latinos integrating the Majors after Jackie. It includes yet another stellar moment in Yankees history:
Vic Power (né Victor Pellot Pove), a dark-skinned infielder from Puerto Rico, had married a light-skinned Hispanic woman, but when he drove her around Kansas City—where he played for the Athletics in 1955—police regularly stopped him to question him about the white woman in the passenger seat. Another time, after Power bought a Coke at a gas station in Florida, the attendant boarded the team bus and demanded that Power return the bottle. Power complied with some choice words. A patrol car soon pulled over the bus, and the officer arrested Power for profanity. Power’s teammates posted bail of $500 but warned him not to go back for the trial. “What kind of country is this?” Power asked.
America’s team gave him his answer. Power batted .330 and drove in 109 runs for the New York Yankees’ AAA team in 1952, but the parent club did not promote him. The next year, Power won the American Association batting title with his .349 average but still didn’t get called up. Knowing that Power’s stylish play and his relationship with a white woman (whom he would soon marry) might ruffle the team’s staid fan base, Yankees general manager George Weiss said Power wasn’t the “right kind” of black man to integrate the Yankees. The team’s traveling secretary Bill McCorry was more blunt: “No nigger will have a berth on any train I’m running.” Yankee president Dan Topping tried to justify the team’s decision by labeling Power a “poor fielder.”
Once Power finally did get a crack at the big leagues after the Yankees traded him to the Philadelphia Athletics in 1954, the infielder went on to win seven Gold Gloves ...
For the record, the Yankees were the unlucky 13th of the original 16 teams to integrate (in 1955 with Elston Howard), behind only the Phillies ('57), Tigers ('58) and Red Sox ('59), and despite the other New York teams being the first (Dodgers in '47) and fourth (Giants in '49) to move the country, the culture, and the world forward.
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