-Nice article in today’s NYT about Yogi Berra. Truly a Yankee treasure.
-The stuff about the Rays being ticked off at Swisher for rolling the ball into the dugout after striking out Gabe Kapler appears to be just another figment of Michael Kay’s imagination. LoHud reports that Rays manager Joe Maddon sent Swisher his lineup card from that evening, for Nick to have as a keepsake. Apparently, Garza threw at him just because he’s swinging the bat so damn well.
-Paul Olden will continue filling in for Bob Sheppard as the Yankee PA announcer, although a lil’ birdie told me there will be a recording from Bob played to open up the new ballpark. I really miss Bob, he treated every word he spoke with the care and respect a museum director would have for a fine work of art. There’s just no replacing him.
-The stuff about CC not being a big game pitcher is so bogus. He pitched his last 3 outings of 2008 on short rest, and didn’t really show any ill effects until the very last game. He carried the Brewers to the playoffs last year in a tight pennant race, and the Indians the year before, each time leading all of baseball in innings pitched. Not having it after all those innings doesn’t tell me anything about his character, it tells me the Yanks need to make sure he has something left in the tank come October. Girardi has already said he plans to do just that.
-Very happy with Brett Gardner so far. I don’t care about his batting average, SLG or anything like that. He’s scored 7 runs in 9 games and caught everything in CF. If he keeps that up, I’ll be thrilled.
-I can’t stress enough what a different feel there is to this team. Recent Yankee teams would rise and fall with their ability to score runs, so their success was often a function of who the opposing pitcher was the next day. This team revolves around the pitching staff. They’re also proving to be more resourceful. Scratching out a run here and there when Gardner gets on base, more patient up and down the lineup, no one hitter you expect to do it all for you. Coming back late against other teams weaker middle relief, grabbing a lead and then running out the clock like you would in the NFL. Very reminiscient of the late 90′s teams that Girardi played on.
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