Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Wow, It Really HAS Been Awhile…

Posted by: Miss October

ESPN SportsCenter just mentioned in their preview of Tuesday night’s ALCS game between the Red Sox and the Indians that it was four years to the day since Tim Wakefield gave up a game-winning home run to the Yankees’ Aaron Boone in game seven of the 2003 ALCS, which resulted in their last trip to the World Series.

As they replayed the clip, I was reminded of the excitement I felt that night (or the early hours of the morning, as that game went into extra innings). It was only one of many exciting playoff game comebacks and finishes that the Yankees enjoyed during their great run. I realized that night was the last time I felt that excitement about a Yankee win in the playoffs. Those were the days when even if the Yankees were losing late in the game, or were down a game or two in a series, you just knew they would find a way to come back. I haven’t had that feeling during the playoffs in a long time…certainly not this year.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Wish Lists

by: Mr. November

Here are my short lists for a new manager and new 3B, in no particular order:


Don Mattingly

Joe Girardi

Dallas Green (just to see him make Joba throw 170 pitches in his second career start, and then just so the fans can tear him a new one)

Casey Stengel (prop him up and let's roll)

Montgomery C. Burns (hey, he won a softball championship once)


My dad

Miss October's dad

Miss October

Billy Martin (see: Casey Stengel)

Anyone who can last more than 2 years or until a new owner takes over, if you know what I mean


Mike Pagliarulo

Scott Brosius

Craig Nettles

Hensley Muelens (I just want to hear the Bleacher Creatures shout out a "Bam-Bam" roll call)

Mike Lowell (this may actually happen)

Miguel Cabrera (this won't)

Josh Wang (3B on my softball team; believe it or not, he's not Asian)

Anyone who doesn't make in one year the equivalent of a small country's GDP for 100 years, yet who can get a big hit when it matters

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


by: Mr. November

That should have been the score in the 3 games the Yankees lost to the Indians in the ALDS. 9-0 is the "official" score of a forfeited game, and the Bombers played like they were forfeiting.

Lifeless, listless, powerless, and with little pitching, the Yankees swung and missed at every opportunity and double-played their way out of the postseason. Chien-Ming Wang failed to show any heart TWICE, and Roger Clemens had no business taking the mound in the first place. Throughout the entire series, Yankee bats did nothing of note.

All the while, Joe Torre sat stoic, seemingly resigned to his (and the team's fate). One look into the Yankee dugout last night, even as the team attempted rally after rally, showed the players not standing against the dugout fence, anticipating every pitch. Instead, they sat back, on the bench, looking as uninterested as a 15-year old skateboarder sitting in chemistry class.

The time has indeed come for a change, and rightfully so. Howard Bryant of ESPN.com puts it best, so no need for me to try and rehash his words. Let's leave it at this - 2008, new year, new team, completely new look.

I, for one, welcome it.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Kennys Can't Play in New York -- Only vs. the Yankees in the ALDS

Posted by: Miss October

Kenny Lofton – of all people – was last night’s “player of the game.” The veteran, who spent a “grouchy” season in Yankee pinstripes in 2004 (at least the New York Times called him "grouchy" this morning) had three hits and drove in four runs for Cleveland in game 1 of the ALDS. When I saw him step to the plate in his first at bat, I thought Wang would be able to escape the first inning with only giving up one run… unfortunately I was wrong. Lofton showed signs of early-90s form when he played with the Indians – prompting ESPN.com to run the headline “Just Like Old Times.”

As I started to write this, another ex-Yankee named Kenny came to mind. Kenny Rogers. Last year, when the Yankees faced the Tigers in the ALDS, Kenny pitched a gem as Yankee after Yankee looked dumbfounded at the plate. Was this the same Kenny Rogers, who, with the Yankees down 2 games to 1 in the 1996 World Series, had a disastrous outing, giving up 5 runs in 5 innings in what seemed like a “must-win” game?? (Of course Jim Leyritz bailed him out with his eighth inning heroics). These proven “veterans” who just couldn’t cut it in New York have been coming back to haunt the Yankees and their fans lately.

I’m just hoping that vintage, post-season Andy Pettitte shows up tonight (scowl and all) and the headlines tomorrow will again read “Just Like Old Times.”

Biggest Game of the Year

by: Mr, November

Today's game is basically the season for the Yankees. They win, then the series is tied and they are right back on track to come home and face the Indians at the Stadium. They lose, they may as well pack up and head home.

I'm not being pessimistic, just realistic. The last team to come back from a 2-0 deficit in the ALDS? The 2001 New York Yankees. And this year's team just isn't the same.

I'll give the bats a break for last night, even though big outs were made with runners on base numerous times. Seriously though, when you give up 12 runs, what can you ask of your lineup anyway? Needing to score 13 runs to win a playoff game will not get you very far.

So yesterday's goat was obviously Chien-Ming Wang, who set the stage early by giving up 3 runs in the first. Way to show up, Wang. Biggest start of the season for you and you laid a gigantic egg. Here's hoping Pettitte can accomplish today even a fraction of what you failed miserably at last night.

Thursday, October 04, 2007


by: Mr. November

Sometimes I wonder why I enjoy the game of baseball as much as I do. I played for only one year in high school. I had a wicked half-knuckle, half-forkball when I was on the mound, but I couldn't get a hit if the pitcher rolled a bowling ball to the plate. Seeing as the BCSL American Division in north Jersey didn't exactly promote the role of the designated hitter, my playing days were cut short.

I had always been a Yankees fan (outside of an ill-advised half season of rooting for the Mets as well in 1986 - sorry, Dad), but I guess my interest waned a bit during my high school years. Once I stopped playing the game myself, I got involved in my school's theater program. I was more caught up in getting laughs on stage than watching grown men play a kid's game for millions of dollars. I have to admit that when then strike of 1994 hit, it didn't phase me as much as it should have.

Then I went to college in Boston, a rabid baseball town. Even during my lesser years, I still watched the Yankees as much as I could and followed the game overall. But living in Boston, literally walking distance from Fenway Park, sparked my desire for the game all over again. My love of baseball in general and of the Yankees specifically grew with every Red Sox fan I met. I started going to games again, even non-Yankee games, and I learned to appreciate all the nuances that had alluded me in my years away from the field.

Turns out I still had the love for the game. All the years I had supposedly not been a real fan were still there in my memory. I was able to carry on full conversations (OK, arguments) with other fans about Yankees seasons and players of old. I started to amaze myself - I thought I hadn't been paying full attention all those years! Guess I was all along.

When the Yankees won their first World Series in 18 years in the fall of 1996, I watched the last out from a dorm room in Warren Towers on Commonwealth Ave. I called my dad during the final inning and we watched it "together" on the phone. It felt like the right thing to do and, looking back, it was.

Eleven years later (yes, I'm getting old), I'm sitting and waiting for the 2007 Yankees to take the field in Cleveland for their first game of the current postseason. I'm alone this time, in my house, with my wife at work and my dog sleeping on the coach. My passion for the Yankees has never been greater. I will cheer every hit and curse every out. The "NY" tattoo on my right calf still looks good, if you ask me.

And yes, I will call my dad during the game, probably more than once. I wouldn't have it any other way.

Pre-Game Warmup Picture of the Day...

Posted By: Miss October

Don't hurt yourself, A-Rod... we are expecting BIG things from you this October... starting tonight. Please prove that my psychic powers are correct and hit a home run in your second at bat. -- See, I even put it in writing -- C.C. Who???