Friday, May 8, 2009

Game 29: Guess Who's Back

It's the return of the Wild Style fashionist,
Smashin hits, make it hard to adapt to this,
Put pizazz and jazz in this, and cash in this,
Mastered this, flash this and make 'em clap to this...

I control the crowd, you know I hold it down,
When it drop you know it's jiggy when you hear the sound,
From town to town, until it's world reknowned,
And I rock New York City all year around.
Easiest. Song. Choice. Ever. Were it not written over 12 years ago, you might think that (the God) Rakim penned that song and the intro to the video explicitly for A-Rod's return to the Yankees. 

It wasn't too long ago that scribes were hypothesizing that the break from A-Rod might be a welcomed one for the Bombers. Remember this article?
And yet this is no cause for the mass hysteria that greeted Y2K. The team could lose its most feared and productive hitter, and yet the sky isn’t falling on Tampa, the Bronx, or on any other corner of the Yankees’ vast universe.

Why? Because an extended A-Rod absence would swing open a door of delicious opportunity, that’s why.

The Yankees could go back to being the Yankees. They could go back to being the team that won four championships in five years with reliable pitching and a harmonious band of position players that didn’t need a slugger whose favorite teammates are Me, Myself and I.

[Blah, blah, blah... Scott Brosius... those teams just found a way to win... ]


This isn’t the NBA. You can’t build a World Series winner around a Michael Jordan or a Kobe Bryant. A-Rod and Barry Bonds, the two greatest — if chemically enhanced — position players of their time, have combined to win as many World Series rings as the Cubs have won since 1908.
How did that theory work out for you, Ian O'Connor? 

The dynasty Yankees did have stars. Are you familiar with one Derek Sanderson Jeter? You don't think Roger Clemens loved him some Roger Clemens? Those Yankees got great offensive production from the three most difficult defensive positions, catcher, shortstop and centerfield. That had about a trillion times more to do with it than their lack of a star slugger.

Barry Bonds didn't win a World Series, but the one he appeared in went to 7 games and he batted .471/.700/1.294 with four home runs in it. Mickey Mantle won 7 World Series and so did Babe Ruth. Hank Aaron and Willie Mays won one a piece. Albert Puljos won one in 2006 and the Sox with Manny and Papi may or may not have chalked up a couple as well. Reggie Jackson was half the player and twice the clubhouse cancer of A-Rod and he's got 5 rings. 

Teams that don't have stud sluggers win despite that fact, not because of it.

I don't know what to expect from A-Rod when he returns to the team. There have been mixed results coming off these types of procedures, and extended Spring Training isn't going to give us a very good idea of how productive he can be. But like Big Willie Style showed this morning, there is no possible way he could be worse than the guys who filled his spot for the last 28 games. 

In a way, tonight represents a fresh start. As commenter mmb1980 noted on the post I put up late last night, as was the case just over a month ago on Day 1 of the season, CC Sabathia will oppose Jeremy Guthrie at Camden Yards. Granted, the Yanks have spotted Boston 5.5, and Toronto 6 games in the standings since that point, but with only 17% of the season in the books, those leads are quite surmountable. They Yanks just have to start heading in the right direction soon.


  1. Smallest sample size possible (1 pitch) but I like what I see.


  2. Hahahahahhah... That's right, bitches.

    Shit. Be. Back. On.