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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Pinch hitting: Was Watching

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Jan 14, 2008 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

January is usually a slow month for baseball news. So we’ve lined up a series of guest bloggers to entertain you. Next up is Steve from Was Watching.

Steve has been an online baseball analyst since 1997. He has been blogging about the New York Yankees, since April 2005, at WasWatching.com. Steve’s goal is to someday find a bag full of money that will allow him to retire and pursue baseball related matters on a full-time basis.

Here is his post:

Nineteen seventy three was a significant season in Yankees history. It was the year that Big Stein took charge. It was the last year of the “old” Stadium. It’s when Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich traded families. It was the first year of the designated hitter – and Yankee Ron Blomberg was the first to do it. And, I went to my first game, ever, at Yankee Stadium.

That first trip was a contest between the Yankees and the Texas Rangers. Peterson started for the Yanks, threw one pitch, and re-aggravated an injury to his thigh covering first. Fred Beene came on in relief and threw a complete game. Bobby Murcer, Thurman Munson, Felipe Alou and Stick Michael had hits in the bottom of the ninth to score two runs and give New York a 3-2 comeback victory.

From there, I grew up listening to Phil Rizzuto, Bill White, and Frank Messer covering great Yankees teams built by Gabe Paul and cared for by Cedric Tallis and Stick Michael. It was a good time to be a Yankees fan.

However, things changed during the 1980’s. Then, Yankees games were being covered by broadcasters such as Fran Healy, Spencer Ross, Ken Harrelson, and Jay Johnstone. This was the beginning of where it seemed like almost anyone was granted the privilege to work in the Yanks’ broadcast booth. (And, through these opened doors later waltzed the likes of Michael Kay, Paul Olden, Suzyn Waldman, David Justice, and Kimberly Jones.) During this period, Bill Bergesch, Murray Cook, Bob Quinn and Harding Peterson, at times, were in charge of manning the Yankees’ ship – and failing at the task. Sure, there was a brief period in the ‘80’s where Clyde King was in charge – and things went well. But, on the whole, the 1980’s were a downhill slide for the Yanks – and not a great time to be a Yankees fan.

It hit rock bottom from 1989 to 1992. This four-year period has a strong claim towards being the worse run in the Yankees’ timeline – in terms of the team’s relative and collective shortcomings. But, also, during this time, along came Howie Spira, Fay Vincent’s slap on Big Stein, and the installation of Stick Micheal as Yankees GM.

It wasn’t too long before happy times returned in Yankeeland. Between the Stick and Bob Watson (who succeeded Michael in 1996), a powerhouse entity was built in the Bronx – with a cadre of players that also later benefited Brian Cashman when he took over for Watson in 1998. And, for a kicker, during this time, Jim Kaat and Ken Singleton were added to the Yankees broadcast crew – providing quality coverage of the team.

Alas, after 2001, the force that Michael and Watson created was nearly tapped out and a new pocket in Yankees history began to form. The Randy Levine, Brian Cashman, and Jean Afterman-run Yankees, from 2002-07, sure look marvelous in terms of their win totals and revenue. But, if not for Boston collapses in the 2003 ALCS and the regular seasons of 2005 and 2006, this five-year period would not look as pretty for New York as it does on the average fan’s ledger.

During the 1980’s, the Yankees won the most regular season games in baseball – but, no rings. If our present decade ended today, you could say the same thing about Cashman’s 21st century Yankees. Could it be that we’re in another period where it’s not so great to be a Yankees fan – and people just don’t realize it yet? Or, will the Brothers Stein now taking over for Cashman change the direction of the team? Time will tell.

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229 Responses to “Pinch hitting: Was Watching”

  1. Peter Abraham January 14th, 2008 at 12:20 am

    Thanks to Steve for being one of our guest bloggers.

  2. mel January 14th, 2008 at 12:27 am

    There’s so much pressure on the Yankees to win it all, that they really got really tight in the post-seasons after the “big collapse”. Maybe a change in the manager will bring different results.

    There’ve been 7 whole seasons in the books since the Yankees last won the fall classic. We’ve been the winningest club in those years making it to the post-season since forever. Are we so spoiled as fans that we can’t even appreciate the magnitude of that, or the effort put forth by the Yankees?

    As far as I know, there are one hundred years in a century, so we’ve got a little time left. Everyone just needs to relax…just a little.

    I’m still psyched. Last year in the Stadium. All those ghosts of Yankee past…

  3. Buddy Biancalana January 14th, 2008 at 12:50 am

    Steve-

    Excellent post. Hawk Harrelson has same great calls referring to Roberto Kelly as “Bobby Kelly”. Ducksnort comes to mind as well. I remember George Grande & Dave Cohen as well, but I do recall the 89-92 time period, being so upset at all the Yankee losses. In 1994 when the Yankees were in 1st & destined for the payoffs since 1981 ,my heart was broken b/c of the strike. It really makes you appreciate the 96-2000 run more & more each day.

  4. raymagnetic January 14th, 2008 at 1:56 am

    But, if not for Boston collapses in the 2003 ALCS and the regular seasons of 2005 and 2006, this five-year period would not look as pretty for New York as it does on the average fan’s ledger.

    Boston’s collapse? Weren’t the Yankees up 3 games to 2 going back home to Yankee Stadium?

    By average fan, you mean average Yankees fans right? I guarantee average Rays fans or Pittsburg fans would be thrilled at making the playoffs seven years in a row. Maybe I’m just easy to please I guess.

  5. iYankees January 14th, 2008 at 2:02 am

    Good job Steve (as usual). With the money the Yankees have (and are willing to spend) and the young talent flowing throughout their minor league system, many Yankees fans probably feel as if “bad times” aren’t really a possibility.

  6. susan mullen January 14th, 2008 at 2:16 am

    I was just curious on the topic of “the money the Yankees have,” is there a source for information substantiating their financial status? Forbes has them losing money over the past couple of years, they only own 30-40% of the YES Network and its future isn’t necessarily stable. You hear people say “the Yankees have so much money,” I was just wondering where to find substantiation for that.

  7. YANKEE BIAS January 14th, 2008 at 2:32 am

    Man, you can name drop with the best of them.

    Good overall run-down of the past three and half decades in Yankeeland.

    I long for the days of hearing Scooter call a game.

    Just realized I wasn’t even born yet when you saw you’re first game at the Stadium. Crazy.

  8. iYankees January 14th, 2008 at 3:06 am

    The Yankees have alotted a certain amount for their team spending, which can partly be seen in their payroll (the highest out of any team). Even if they’re losing a certain amount due to revenue sharing, luxury taxes, operations management, etc., they generally still take in more than other teams (and even with losses, Steinbrenner has stated that he will continue to pay up).

    In terms of the “unstable” YES Network, yes, the Yankees “only” own 30-40% (I think the number is closer to 40), but that seemingly weak level of ownership still provides them with a pipeline of cash. In a piece by Arianne Cohen, earlier this year (NY Mag), Cohen states that the YES Network’s “revenues top a quarter billion and its profit margin is 60 percent” (http://nymag.com/news/features/2007/profit/32903/). Obviously, the Yankees are taking in a part of this profit, and by doing so they’re simultaneously diluting their losses.

    So, can we stop pretending that the Yankees (valued at over a billion dollars) don’t have money and move on now?

  9. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 7:33 am

    Steve -

    I really enjoyed your post. I also made a stop to your blog, and just kept on reading. Good stuff.

    The only thing I would say with regard to the current Yankee conundrum of winning more games than anyone else, but getting snakebit in the playoffs, is that the entire baseball situation has changed in those 30 years. The Wild Card and revenue sharing have spread the wealth and opportunity around a bit. More teams can seriously battle the Yankees both on the field and in the conference room where deals get made.

    I like the response that the Yankees through Cashman are making to the new scenario. Building from within, once again, is in vogue, and I’m hopeful that by the Yankees using their money to draft smartly and hire better talent evaluators will equate to more long-term success. And, yes, to a few more World Series victories. But I don’t expect another run like they had from ’96 to 2000.

    While a ring-a-year would sure be nice, it’s unrealistic. I won’t say I’m not disappointed when the Yankees, having bested the league by far during the season (except for last season), don’t at least get to the World Series. But, every team that gets to the playoffs wants to win and feels they deserve to win. Knowing the Yankees are in a position every year to contend for the playoffs is exciting. I don’t take that for granted.

    By the way, after reading your piece on what Don Mattingly had to say about the danger of guys falling into the trap of thinking the next guy will get it done, I am also hopeful that a new manager will bring a new mandate. I have always felt it was a two-edge sword – it’s great to know that your lineup is so powerful that anyone can get the job done; it’s also a trap, where you can get too complacent with your own at-bats, thinking that someone else can pick you up. Because I think one of the things that has happened in the playoffs in the last few seasons is that guys don’t know how to deal with the pressure when it IS up to them, and maybe the next guy WON’T be able to pick him up.

    I also think that there has to be a mind-set change with regard to the way the Yankees approach a lot of their games. They need to attack starting pitchers the way they attack bullpens. They can’t wait out the first 5 or 6 innings of a game, knowing they can beat up on most bullpens in the league. This strategy is one of the tings that has come back to bite them in the playoffs, because for most playoff teams, the bullpens are pretty good, too. Not only that, but if there is a weakness in their own bullpen (which has been the case and we can only hope a bullpen savior will arise this season), then even if you’re beating the other guy’s bullpen, it doesn’t help if they can come right back against yours.

  10. Steve January 14th, 2008 at 8:30 am

    I haven’t thought about Fred Beane in decades. He was the perfect description of what was called “a scrappy reliever”. I remember him being quite effective one year in particular.
    I remember Gene “The Stick” Michael hitting .214 one year, and he was the starting shortstop !
    I remember us briefly having both Felipe and Matty at the same time. I always thought of those two as very “professional” hitters. Matty would hit lefty and slap the ball to leftfield, and Felipe held his bat up high and always looked very “stately”. Lindy McDaniel was I guess was the closer back then — and he was pretty good!

  11. Brinton January 14th, 2008 at 8:48 am

    Are you seriously gonna complain about what cashman’s done? On top of that, are you hinting that Hank is gonna be an improvement? I hope you’re just trying to be provocative because if you really think this has been eve close to the ’80′s, where the yankees traded all (literally, every one)of their young players and had no one in charge who knew what he was doing (see Steinbrenner, George) then you’re just being stupid.

    Citing only world series wins as a measure of quality is cherry picking in the worst way.

  12. Old Ranger January 14th, 2008 at 8:50 am

    Nice job Steve
    Your web site is good also, thanks. I have faith in the NYY leadership (Cashman, Stick). These are very different days in the baseball world, now you have teams trying to play one team against another for free agents. Players going after the big bucks instead of the ring(although, you can’t blame some of them). With the new direction that cashman is fighting to go in…we will be back. A lot has changed since I first started watching the NYY(40s), but one thing stays the same; these are the New York Yanks. 27/08

  13. Old Ranger January 14th, 2008 at 8:52 am

    Doreen
    Great Points. Good going.

  14. Will January 14th, 2008 at 9:04 am

    Did you really mean to give Bob Watson more credit than Cashman for the championships in 1998 to 2000? Do you know who El Duque is? What about David Justice? Or, even Roger Clemens. Look them up…they were kind of big contributors during the three-peat, and all were acquired by Cashman.

    Also, did you really mean to discount the 2003 AL pennant and 2005-2006 division titles because Boston “choked”? I guess that means the Red Sox don’t get any credit for 2004 because the Yankees “choked”. Also, how exactly did the Red Sox collapse in those years? That’s a pretty pathetic analysis.

    Those who read your blog aleady know you can’t stand Cashman, but trying to compare his tenure to the 1980s is not only absurd, but also idotic…and that’s being kind.

  15. TurnTwo January 14th, 2008 at 9:11 am

    yeah, i cant say that i’m surprised WasWatching’s guest post here was anti-cashman… the fact that he’s been so over-the-top with his Cashman rants are the reason i stopped reading WasWatching as much as i did to begin with a couple weeks ago… get past that stuff though, and it still has some other decent and original info.

  16. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 9:15 am

    wow! comparing now to the 80′s….you gotta be kidding!

    by that line of thinking, the yanks are no better off now than the pirates.

    most of the sox fans on here have better takes than that.

  17. hmmm January 14th, 2008 at 9:20 am

    wow, i can’t believe Steve Lombardi wrote an article bashing Cashman. this is what, number 500 in a series of 600?

    we get it, every good move during the Cashman tenure was luck, every negative was Cashman’s fault

    you can keep beating it Steve, but that horse has been dead for a year.

    i am literally snoring.

  18. Clay Bucholz stole my laptop (aka Joe) January 14th, 2008 at 9:22 am

    I read many baseball (and Yankee-related) blogs, but Steve and Pete’s blogs are the only ones that I make sure to read every day.

  19. hmmm January 14th, 2008 at 9:22 am

    could you imagine being a fan of any other team and reading about how a stretch of 5 division titles, 1 pennant, and 6 playoff berths is some sort of “dark period”?

    the sense of entitlement is nauseating.

  20. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 9:25 am

    pete’s had some good pinch-hitters, a couple of singles, a fly out or two, even a few liners in the gap.

    i rate this one a GIDP with the tying run at 3rd.

  21. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 9:32 am

    ~~Thanks to Steve for being one of our guest bloggers.~~

    Thanks for the slot on your dime Pete – much appreciated!

    All – I’ll try and get to your questions and comments as quickly as possible today. Please hang in there with me.

  22. Tseng January 14th, 2008 at 9:37 am

    Might not be such a good thing to stumble across a lot of money if you’ve seen No Country For Old Men.

  23. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 9:37 am

    ~~Boston’s collapse? Weren’t the Yankees up 3 games to 2 going back home to Yankee Stadium? ~~

    Anyone who saw Game 7 of the 2003 ALCS knows that Grady Little helped the Yankees when he left Pedro in the game.

    As far as the other years, well…

    In 2005, the Yankees “comeback” was aided when the (first place) Red Sox lost 12 of 18 games from June 27th to July 18th. And, in 2006, the Red Sox lost 21 games in August (and went 8-21 on the month). Those 21 losses tied the all-time record for losses in a month by a team that started the month in first place. (Boston held a one-game lead over New York at the end of July 2006.)

  24. Bill Porter January 14th, 2008 at 9:39 am

    Steve you need a new drum buddy, this act is so played.

  25. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 9:47 am

    ~~~yeah, i cant say that i’m surprised WasWatching’s guest post here was anti-cashman~~~

    ~~~wow, i can’t believe Steve Lombardi wrote an article bashing Cashman. this is what, number 500 in a series of 600?~~~

    Sure, go ahead and ignore all the wonderful things that I had to say about Gabe Paul, Stick, and Bob Watson and turn this into a “Cashman” thing. {wink}

  26. Yanksrule57 January 14th, 2008 at 9:57 am

    Steve’s Yankee fan beginning was only a couple of years after mine. Roy White was my favorite player from those teams.
    I remember asking my Dad about how two pitchers on the same team could switch wives. He mumbled something and changed the subject.
    During the period 1989-1992 I was lucky because that period exactly coincided with a sea duty tour where is was away from home 75% of the time. So I had very little exposure to the team then.
    I agree with Doreen that this 7 year period may be without championships but the team has a completely different approach than in the past.
    I can live with going with youngsters we develop even if it means being patient. In my lifetime the team has won 11 of the 26 championships. For the younger folks who only know of the 1996-2000 run I can understand their impatience but stay calm, all is well.

  27. B-D-4 trains January 14th, 2008 at 10:18 am

    Even with the storied history the Yankees have, there’s been dark or down periods. Half of the 60′s and the 1st part of the 70′s were down times. Most of the 80′s and half of the 90′s were. The signature is, they always come back to prominence.
    It’s tough to imagine how a team can go 86 years without a baseball championship.

  28. John in Ohio January 14th, 2008 at 10:18 am

    I think the YES guys do a very good job, but occasionally I have to listen over the internet to the radio broadcasts. John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman are laughably terrible. It’s really hard to believe that the mighty Yankees have stuck with them. They should both be kicked upstairs to some kind of promotional duties, and replaced with competent baseball radio people. I guess I’m spoiled, having grown up listening to the great Ernie Harwell here in the midwest. Sterling gets names wrong, makes lots of mistakes on play-by-play, sings his play-by-play (th-uhhhhhhhhh pitch), and those ridiculous players nicknames. Ugh.

  29. Southron January 14th, 2008 at 10:19 am

    Brother and sister Yankee fans, any way you look at it–player development or free agency–it is all a crap shoot.
    It the late 1970′s/early 1980′s, the Dodgers had a farm system stocked with so many blue-chip players they were predicted to be “the” dynasty well into the 1990′s; and, of course, it didn’t happen. On the other hand, during that self same period, the hapless Phllies picked up some fading vets–Joe Morgan, Pete Rose, Tug McGraw etc.–and went to the World Series twice, winning it once. Personally, I opt for building a balance of vets and youngsters as the Yankees did in the mid- to late 90′s and hope that the baseball gods are with you.

    Southron

    P.S. Those of you who tout the present Boston Redsox as unbeatable and a shoo in in 2008, think again. I draw your attention to the 1954 Cleveland Indians, the 1988 New York Mets; and, unfortunately, out 2001 Yankees. On hind thought, we all can see that they were failed dynasties in the making.

  30. Southron January 14th, 2008 at 10:32 am

    B-D-4 trains:

    Why “a team can go 86 years without a baseball champion-ship?” No secret there, my good man: Bad management and then some. See the Boston Redsox when owned by the Yawkey family, the Chicago Cubs when owned by Wrigley family; and, for a short time, our New York Yankees when owned by CBS.
    They say that in selling a house, it’s location, location, location. Well, in building a winning baseball team, it is management, management, management. Remember that the next time any of you trash the Steinbrenner family.

    Southron

  31. hmmm January 14th, 2008 at 10:33 am

    “Even with the storied history the Yankees have, there’s been dark or down periods.”

    agreed. except this isn’t one of them.

  32. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 10:38 am

    john

    ernie harwell was a great announcer, i especially loved how he’d drop in those town names, like …
    foul ball off to the first base side, picked up by a little kid from livonia…. he really brought you through the radio and into the ballpark with him.
    i also did a little baseball reporting in college and got field passed to the royals games and met ernie behind the batting cage one day, and he was so nice to me, whereas most of the big media types would completly ignore the college reporters.

    also major props to Jack Buck. i went to Mizzou and had the intense pleasure of listening to him calling the cards games. he was a true radio man who knew that his listeners couldnt see the game, so he’s always let you know where the ball was on a relay or what the trail runner did on a play to the plate. todays radio guys should study his work too.

  33. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 10:46 am

    Buddy Biancalana, iYankees, YANKEE BIAS, Doreen, Old Ranger, Joe, and anyone else that I missed – I just wanted to say thanks for the kind words.

    For those who want to rag about my choice of topics, etc., well, I’m sorry that you feel that way. But, remember, if you only want to read things that always match, 100%, what you believe or feel is true, then, there’s only one person in the world who will be able to write something that will always make you happy, right?

  34. Buddy Biancalana January 14th, 2008 at 10:47 am

    Steve-

    I also wanted to mention that you contradict yourself, you give credit to Watson & Stick, but never mention Torre even once. They had to I guess he had zero to do with the Yankees winning those 4 WS titles.

  35. Buddy Biancalana January 14th, 2008 at 10:54 am

    Strike **They had to** from my last comment. Edit button where are you?

  36. randy l. January 14th, 2008 at 10:58 am

    i haven’t read steve before so i ddn’t know about his dislike of cashman , but i think it’s good to question cashman simply because anyone gets complacent when they have been on the job as long as he has.

    it’s also possible to be good at coming up with a plan, and not be good at making the plan happen. i like the plan fine, but i don’t think cashman is great at getting everything done. i understand why he got rid of anyone around him that was a threat to his job because of all the tampa intrigue, but when i look at teams like the red sox and indians,i see a much deeper talent pool of assistant gms and other management help.

    there is no equivalent on the yankees of chris antonetti already being promised the gm job as he works with shapiro the gm. the red sox have already spun off a young gm in josh byrnes to the diamondbacks . the red sox have a couple of new prospective gms in cherington and hoyer . allaird baird, the former kansa city gm works for the red sox.sox.there is no equivalent to lucchino on the yankees.

    cashman seems like the lone ranger with the yankees. the yankee front office is definitely minimalist. if you look at the mlb front offices on mlb.com of the teams i’ve mentioned, there is a distinct difference in the size of the front offices.

    i just want cashman to start running a tighter ship and making sure that someone is getting every job done that is part of his plan. right now i’d say a lot of things fall through the cracks. i think the yankees catch up as the year goes on ,but it seems like they are never ready to start the season.

    cleveland arizona, and cleveland are based on similar organization models with each other, and i think that they do a better job of executing their plan than the yankees do.

    cashman can do the job, but he needs to get some quality help in the front office and needs to hire some young hungry guns who are an eventual threat to his job.

  37. John in Ohio January 14th, 2008 at 11:02 am

    I Miss Bernie:

    I also had the pleasure of meeting Ernie once…at a signing for his book Tuned to Baseball. He asked my name, and said “What a wonderful Irish name!” while shaking my hand and thanking me for coming out to see him. I was wearing my Yankees jacket, and he teased me about that, too. I had goosebumps hearing that voice, with which I was so familiar, coming out of this little guy standing before me.

    With him, you ALWAYS knew where the ball was. John Sterling…not so much.

  38. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 11:02 am

    ~~~I also think that there has to be a mind-set change with regard to the way the Yankees approach a lot of their games. ~~~

    Actually, I think, and, yeah, I’m sure that many may disagree with me, that they need a mind-set change on how to build their team…which, of course, ties into how they approach their games.

    Since 2002, the Yanks have won a lot of games each year – and, that’s great. But, the way Cashman has built his teams is the following:

    Spend ~$200 million on great offensive players and pitchers that are either over-hyped or past their prime. And, during the regular season, when those mega-batters are matched-up against the bad pitching teams in the AL, it covers for the weak Yankees pitching and then New York starts to pile up win totals.

    But, come the post-season, when you face teams with good pitching, or you face a team in a format where they can use their best pitchers and hide their duds, your great hitters get shut down and then your weak pitchers get exposed, and you lose the series.

    If the Yankees are going to return to the ring teams like the ’70′s and the ’90′s, they’re going to need to have great pitching to go with their hitting – and great pitching that can shut down another team in the post-season. Until that happens, it’s going to be just like the ’80′s and the post-2001 Yankees…lots of seasons where your hitters carry you to 90+ wins, but, teams that get bounced in the post-season.

  39. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 11:05 am

    some of these ‘ring every year or bust’ yankees fans ought to go out to cincinati or kansas city or even L.A. and go to a non-yankees game (leave your NY gear at home) and hang with the locals and root for the home team and see what its like for normal baseball fans.
    you’ll hear people say things like, ‘if we could just win 85 games this year i’d be happy’ or ‘maybe if these kids we have in AAA ball come through well make the playoffs in a couple of years’. Real fans who are gonna root for thier teams no matter what. you’ll hear some bitching about the mgr or third baseman, but nothing like the crap you hear out of yankee and red sox fans.
    When Charlie Hays caught that foul ball behind third to clinch the ’96 series, i raised a toast to the (maybe) 5,000 people who were stayed through a 1990 twice rain-delayed game at the stadium and rooted the yankees back from a 4 run defict only to see them lose in extra innings. I only know who 2 of them were (besides me) but it was one of my favorite yankees games.
    Wherever you other 4,997 people are: I LOVE YOU GUYS!

  40. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 11:05 am

    ~~~I also wanted to mention that you contradict yourself, you give credit to Watson & Stick, but never mention Torre even once.~~~

    Without the horses, very few managers can win.

    Also, don’t discount the Don Zimmer factor when it comes to Torre. How many World Series have the Yankees reached since Zimmer left?

  41. John in Ohio January 14th, 2008 at 11:10 am

    OH….and Bernie

    No thanks necessary for us (Toledo) supplying you guys with Gary Pinkel. Enjoy. (He did 10 years here. Heckuva coach.)

  42. raymagnetic â„¢ January 14th, 2008 at 11:15 am

    it’s also possible to be good at coming up with a plan, and not be good at making the plan happen. i like the plan fine, but i don’t think cashman is great at getting everything done.

    To hear how some of you guys tell it you would swear that Cashman has had an Isiah Thomas like run in NY the past 10 years. Imagine if the Yankees had missed the playoffs even once, some of you guys would be jumping off of bridges or slashing your wrists. Since you admire the Red Sox organization so much you really should sign on to Red Sox nation. They’re always fan searching.

  43. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 11:17 am

    JinO
    thanks for pinkel! he is great!

    another thing about Jack Buck, he never used those phony signature calls like Sterling. He just reacted to what happened, and it produced some of the greatest calls ever. His ‘Go Crazy Folks, Go Crazy” after Ozzie Smith’s home run and of course “I CAN’T BELIEVE WHAT I JUST SAW!” just popped out naturally, just a guy with a mike reacting to what just happened.
    i think i remember the 1st time sterling did “yankees win, thaaaaaa…” it was real, once. the second time i heard it, it sounded stupid, now i try to chance the station before he says it.

  44. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 11:27 am

    WasWatching is one on the very best Yankee blogs around. I have been a fan of Steve’s for years. Rather then rehashing the latest news, Steve comes up with unusual, interesting, eclectic and provactive posts. Many, many times he has infomation that I found on no other blog (and I read at least 6 a day). As far as I’m concerned, for the ‘thoughtful’ Yankee fan, it is must reading.

    That said, Steve does have a serious problem with Brian Cashman, thet contradicts his otherwise usually intelligent analysis. I suspect this might be because, in a previous life, while serving a 6 month encarceration for scalping Yankee tickets, he had a very, VERY uncomfortable experience in the shower with someone who ‘looked a lot like Cashman’. There is simply no other explaination.

    It might take 12 steps, a therapist, an exorcist, or a labotomist to fix this problem. I just don’t know.

    But I forgive Steve’s rantings on Cashman. We all have a blind spot. He is truly dedicated to WasWatching, as an average of 3 or 4 posts everyday expresses true passion.

    I make fun…. but bookmark WasWatching and visit frequently.

  45. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 11:30 am

    steve,
    should have stopped while you were behind.

    blaming the bench coach?

    whats next the hot dog vender in section 113?

  46. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 11:34 am

    And speaking of dark ages….
    As a kid, I knew nothing about baseball, as my father and older brother has no use for sports at all. We moved when I was 10, and my new bast friend told me that we (NY) had the very best baseball team IN THE WORLD. Can you imagine? This sounded very cool, so I became an instant fan… and started rooting for the VERY BEST TEAM IN THE WORLD….
    in 1965.

    Need I say more?

    During those dark days, one thing I remember was praying for a truly great leadoff guy (sorry Horace). And then one day, by some miracle, MY DREAM CAME TRUE!
    We got… Matty Alou.
    So what did the Yankees do with this speedy, high average, no-power, slap hitting singles machine?

    They batted him 3rd!
    Need I say more?

  47. Buddy Biancalana January 14th, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Also, don’t discount the Don Zimmer factor when it comes to Torre. How many World Series have the Yankees reached since Zimmer left?

    ————————————————————

    Good point, so why not mention Zimmer in your original post?

  48. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 11:36 am

    oyf
    my first game was in 64, so i was right there with you through the horace clark era buddy!

  49. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 11:42 am

    IMB – Hey… At least you had 1964!

  50. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 11:45 am

    at least you go to see mickey, whitey and elston!

  51. long time January 14th, 2008 at 11:58 am

    The Yankees have not been in a WS since 2001 because:

    A.Don Zimmer no longe bench coach

    B. Donnie in a Yankee uniform again ( Jinx )

    C. Sweeny Murti took over as Yankee reporter for the FAN (Jinx)

    D.I gave up my Season Tickets after 2001 because of my transfer out of state.

    e. Our pitching just plain sucked.

    Stick with the Kids and we will be a powerhouse once again.

  52. GreenBeret7 January 14th, 2008 at 12:00 pm

    Steve Lombardi
    January 14th, 2008 at 11:05 am
    ~~~I also wanted to mention that you contradict yourself, you give credit to Watson & Stick, but never mention Torre even once.~~~

    Without the horses, very few managers can win.

    Also, don’t discount the Don Zimmer factor when it comes to Torre. How many World Series have the Yankees reached since Zimmer left?

    ____________________________________________________

    How many titles has Zimmer won since 1978? oopsss…my error.

  53. randy l. January 14th, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    “Since you admire the Red Sox organization so much you really should sign on to Red Sox nation. They’re always fan searching.”

    The ancient Chinese warrior Sun Tzu taught his men to “know your enemy” before going into battle. For if “you know your enemy and know yourself,” he wrote, “you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” But, Sun Tzu warned, “If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.”

    are you in denial that the red sox have won two world championships in the past four years? you may want to just plug along with a cute little plan of younger and cheaper that any nitwit could come up with, but for people who take this seriously it’s obvious that there is a transition in major league baseball the way baseball teams are being run.

    the yankees have shown signs of getting with it, but they are not even close to being there as far as front office excellence goes. you like young pitching. what’s wrong with some fresh young management types? it is possible that cashman is the equivalent of an aging player. what’s wrong with some young competition for him. how can that not help the yankees?

    i do not want to see a third red sox championship. it’s time the yankees make it an organizational goal that it doesn’t happen. if you don’t care that’s your business. i want to see a sesne of urgency that’s fosused like a laser to make sure it doesn’t, instead of a slow developing plan that may or may not yield results in a few years.

  54. GreenBeret7 January 14th, 2008 at 12:04 pm

    Yankees haven’t won since this became Jeter’s Team and he was named team captain.

  55. Jeff NJ January 14th, 2008 at 12:07 pm

    Nice when my favorite blog plugs my second favorite blog. Keep up the good work Steve (and Peter).

  56. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 12:17 pm

    ~~~Good point, so why not mention Zimmer in your original post?~~~

    I promised Pete to keep it close to 600 words, otherwise, sure, I could have kept going and going….

  57. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 12:18 pm

    LOL Old Yanks Fan – thanks for the kind words and the theory. Funny stuff.

  58. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 12:22 pm

    ~~~Nice when my favorite blog plugs my second favorite blog. Keep up the good work Steve (and Peter).~~~

    Thanks Jeff.

    ~~~Since you admire the Red Sox organization so much you really should sign on to Red Sox nation. They’re always fan searching.~~~

    If you go to WasWatching.com, and search “Lucchino” or “Schilling” you’ll see how I feel about Boston. And, I’ll let those comments that you find stand as my answer on that.

  59. jennifer- Hip Hip Jorge January 14th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    long time

    2003 ring a bell?

  60. Old Ranger January 14th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

    Thank goodness for the comments and bloggers on this and other sites. In this off season, I finally started looking on the internet for some information on my Yanks. Thank God you all are here, or I would have gone crazy. My first game was the yanks in the late 40′s. They were great, still are. 27/08

  61. jon January 14th, 2008 at 12:39 pm

    Surprised he didn’t stick in a little tidbit about how Shelley Duncan has a slugging percentage of 900 on Wednesdays and Saturdays when the temperature at the start of the 4th inning is between 66 and 73 degrees, and thus we should make sure to play him in all of those games.

    Statistical guru, this Steve Lombardi.

    http://www.waswatching.com/arc.....nos_1.html

  62. Yanksrule57 January 14th, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    Why doesn’t anyone ever say that “The Yankees have not won a World Series since they signed Jason Giambi to a contract”?
    I hear people blame:

    Torre
    Jeter
    Don Zimmer Leaving
    Donnie B for coming back
    signing old, washed up, or mediocre pitchers (my personal pick)
    Cashman
    George

    What about the assets that otherwise could pay for a couple of good pitchers being paid to a defensively and health challenged former slugger who is only good, when healthy, for DH’ing.

  63. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    old ranger
    WELCOME!
    got any good DiMag stories for a rainy january day?

  64. Hooog January 14th, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    I think you also need to look at ownership input when talking about Cashman. Arizona and Cleveland DO NOT have ownership groups that want a player on a whim. I have to believe that some of the pitchers and position players that are under or were under contract were based on the Tampa faction and Big Stein himself.

    Since Cashman gained autonomy over scouting and drafting, the structure has changed and I think we see him building thru different methods. So, I believe he has made the necessary changes to build a better team. He also has to be mindful of the bad contracts that still exist.

  65. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 12:50 pm

    Spend ~$200 million on great offensive players and pitchers that are either over-hyped or past their prime. And, during the regular season, when those mega-batters are matched-up against the bad pitching teams in the AL, it covers for the weak Yankees pitching and then New York starts to pile up win totals.

    Sometimes you have to take what’s there; sometimes a guy looks really good on paper, and other teams think so too, but when they get to Yankee Stadium they can’t take the heat. I think after Pettitte & Clemens left the team after 2003, they panicked, something the Yankees generally do not do.

    I think Cashman and the Yankees are very aware of their problem, hence the recent drafts. Pitching is the most difficult area to fix, bullpen even more so. And you can’t get to the post season without being able to win during the season, so it’s hard to fault the Yankees for building a team that can win. That potent offense may allow for the maturation of the young pitchers, whichever ones are kept, but once the pitching catches up, they will have both strong pitching and a good lineup. And still the post-season is a crap shoot. They can enhance their chances with even a slightly stronger starting rotation that can allow the bullpen to be used in the most efficient way, so they’re not toast by September.

    It’s hard to complain about a team that mostly wins. Again, WS is great, and I wouldn’t say no to another run of championships, but you gotta be able to get there, and the Yankees have put themselves in the best position to do so.

    All teams need a little luck along the way, so saying the Yankees won by default because the Red Sox flopped, well, that’s kinda what happens all the time to whoever wins. It is far more rare for a team to be dominant all year AND win it all. That’s why a team like the 1998 Yankees is super-special. I would suggest that if the Red Sox flopped and the Yankees did not capitalize on that, then there would be a reason to be upset. If the Yankees win every game, and the Red Sox win every game, then it comes down to how they do head-to-head, and the Yankees seem to be able to beat the Red Sox most of the time.

  66. Steve January 14th, 2008 at 12:54 pm

    Yep, the 00s sure have been a s*** time to root for this team.
    Watching a decade of the greatest closer ever.
    Watching Jeter do his thing.
    Watching a historic season from Posada just last year.
    Watching Wang and Cano emerge.
    Watching Joba emerge and Hughes almost throw a no hitter in his second big league start.
    Watching A-Rod win 2 MVPs in 4 seasons.
    Watching Cashman get Bobby Abreu for like, nothing.
    Watching the Yanks make the playoffs every year this decade.

    It’s been terrible. I don’t even understand why this team still holds my interest.

    One question for you Steve, what exactly is it that you Were Watching?

  67. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 1:04 pm

    apparently steve spends alot of time watching the g.m.

    and the bench coach.

  68. jennifer- Hip Hip Jorge January 14th, 2008 at 1:09 pm

    Yanksrule57

    You left out signing Mike Mussina. :P

  69. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    ~~~One question for you Steve, what exactly is it that you Were Watching?~~~

    The 2002 ALDS, the 2003 World Series, Jeff Weaver and Enrique Wilson doing their things, the terrible Yankees pitching in 2004 and the bomb in the 2004 ALCS, Kevin Brown in general, the 2005 season where they barely tied Boston and the 2005 ALDS, Carl Pavano, the 2006 ALDS, Wil Nieves, Kei Igawa, not making 1st in ’07, the 2007 ALDS….did I forget Darrell May, Gabe White, Sidney Ponson?…you see, it’s not all been puppy dogs and cupcakes in Yankeeland since 2002.

  70. GreenBeret7 January 14th, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    RIP, Johnny Podres. Even though you broke my heart in 1955 and 1963, you was a Hell of a pitcher and a damned nice guy.

    http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/.....id=3195497

  71. rodg12 January 14th, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    “During the 1980’s, the Yankees won the most regular season games in baseball – but, no rings. If our present decade ended today, you could say the same thing about Cashman’s 21st century Yankees. Could it be that we’re in another period where it’s not so great to be a Yankees fan – and people just don’t realize it yet? Or, will the Brothers Stein now taking over for Cashman change the direction of the team? Time will tell.”

    Just a small quibble here. I don’t see how the Championship in 2000 doesn’t qualify as being in the 21st century.

  72. i miss bernie January 14th, 2008 at 1:16 pm

    gb
    i posted the other day that i saw podres at the stadium, i was walking out of monument park and he was walking out to the bullpen, and i yelled, ‘he podres, you’re not welcome here,” and he turned around and smiled. must have been nice to be a WS hero and have people who werent even born know who you are years later
    rip johnny

  73. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    ~~~Sometimes you have to take what’s there; sometimes a guy looks really good on paper, and other teams think so too, but when they get to Yankee Stadium they can’t take the heat.~~~

    Doesn’t that then mean it was a “bad hire”? You, or, rather the Yankees, should be screening for this, no? And, if they don’t, or, if they do it poorly, then they’re not doing their job well, correct?

  74. Will January 14th, 2008 at 1:21 pm

    No is suggesting you aren’t entitled to a different opinion about Cashman, but what probably bothers most people is your arguments are so poorly reasoned. For example, you have failed to explain how Watson/Stick deserve credit for the likes of El Duque/Clemens/Justice/etc.

    Also, it’s a pathetic argument to suggest that the Yankees have only won because Boston has collapsed. To make such a claim, you rely on bad stretches that Boston has had, but don’t consider that the Yankees have also had dips as well. Just look at 2005 and last season when the Yankees struggled mightily out of the gate. In an attempt to deny Cashman credit, you seem more willing to irrationally explain away Yankee success because the Red Sox weren’t able to play as well as they did. Think about that for a moment…it’s ABSURD.

  75. GreenBeret7 January 14th, 2008 at 1:28 pm

    Bernie, people forget just how young Podes was that year…just 22, and not an especially good year, but, a nice guy to everyone and a really fine pithing coach.

    http://www.baseball-reference......jo01.shtml

  76. GreenBeret7 January 14th, 2008 at 1:31 pm

    **pitching coach**
    His seasons started in October

  77. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    ~~~No is suggesting you aren’t entitled to a different opinion about Cashman, but what probably bothers most people is your arguments are so poorly reasoned. For example, you have failed to explain how Watson/Stick deserve credit for the likes of El Duque/Clemens/Justice/etc. ~~~

    Did I say Stick/Watson were the reason for Duque, Clemens and Justice? No, but, they were the reason behind all the other Yankees on those ring teams. Are you suggesting that Duque, Clemens and Justice are the main reasons why the Yankees won in 1998-2000?

  78. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 2:06 pm

    ~~~Just a small quibble here. I don’t see how the Championship in 2000 doesn’t qualify as being in the 21st century.~~

    The 21st century is the current century in accordance with the Gregorian calendar. It began on January 1, 2001 and will end December 31, 2100.

  79. Mark McCray January 14th, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    Great guest post Steve!!!

  80. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 2:10 pm

    Doesn’t anybody recognize how truly random the events in any 1 particular ballgame are? How much of the game is beyond the control of ballplayers? How there are dozens of instances where had any one been different, and entire series may have ended differently?

    Broken bats, bad ump calls, fans interferring with a ballplayer, 410′ outs, 320′ HRs, bad players having great days, great players having bad days, Rivera throwing a DP ball into CF, Dave Eckstein hitting a HR…. MIDGES?

    Do you really think any one 5 or 7 game series absolutely determines the better team?

    If you roll a pair of dice 36 times, if should come up 7′s six times, and snake-eyes once. Can you argue with my math? Try it. See? Oh, it didn’t come up that way? Try it 360 times. How about 3600 times?

    The truth is there is a tremendous amount of random luck/fate that happens in any one game or series of games. Statistically, the larger your sample set, the better the odds of the result approaching the calculated odds.

    The Yankees have been the best team is baseball, with the Braves close behind, because year after year, over 162 games, they have the best record.

    A ball can be hit on a line, faster then the speed of sound, yet be caught because coincidentally, it was hit directly at a players chest. Another ball call be hit weakly, take 30 bounces, and just dribble past 2 diving players into the outfield.

    Were the D-Backs a better team then the Yanks in 2001?
    Were the Marlins a better team then the Yanks in 2003?
    Were the Red Sox a better team then the Yanks in 2004?
    Were the ST. LOUIS CARDINALS the BEST TEAM in baseball in 2006?

    Get a grip folks.
    If I HAD to come up with a ‘reason’ the Yanks have not won in the PS’s since 2000, I would say:

    1) Our pitching, 1-4 was not good enough. Or rather, for those specific games, they were not good enough.
    2) Our offense underperformed. The same pitchers we beat easily in the regular season, beat us in October.

    Even notice that the team that wins the WS usually has one series during the year that they were swept by an inferior team? How is that possible? But it probably happens every year, and inferior teams win series over better teams all the time.

    In 2006, the Sox were swept in a 3 games series (which would be the same as losing a 5 game series) by Toronto, Detroit, Seattle and the Yankees. In 2007, the Sox lost 5 of 7 games to Cleveland in the reular season… and won 4 of 7 in the Post Season. Waddayaknow.

    If the 2007 Yankees play the 20007 Indians in 1000 5 game series, all starting on a Monday, maybe the Yanks win 537 and the Indians win 463.
    So who’s the better team?
    Well, I guess it depends which Monday you are talking about.

    Folks. Repeat after me. RCNB… RCNB… RCNB
    (random chaotic nature of baseball)

    The moral of this story?
    SMALL SAMPLE SIZES DO NOT EVER PROVE ANYTHING.

  81. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 2:18 pm

    Old Yanks Fan -

    I absolutely love your post. We can search for reasons and discuss everything ad nauseum, but baseball is definitely random & chaotic!

    (It is also, most of the time, fun to discuss anyway!) :)

  82. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 2:38 pm

    Mark – thanks.

    ~~~Were the D-Backs a better team then the Yanks in 2001?
    Were the Marlins a better team then the Yanks in 2003?
    Were the Red Sox a better team then the Yanks in 2004?~~~

    I would say the D-backs were better in 2001. In the WS games they won, they really won. And, in the games that they lost, the Yankees needed miracles.

    In 2003, the best team did not win the WS – but, the best managed team did.

    In 2004, the Red Sox were much better than the Yankees. The Yankees, based on their poor pitching, had no business being in the ALCS. In fact, I like to say that the choke in the ’04 ALCS was the Sox – for allowing the Yanks to win the first 3 games.

    But, again, these are just my opinions.

  83. hmmm January 14th, 2008 at 2:44 pm

    great post OYF.

    although your elegant argument flies directly in the face of everyone who wants to do nothing but bitch and moan and point fingers at people b/c things didn’t go their way.

  84. Drive 4-5 January 14th, 2008 at 3:07 pm

    Old Yanks Fan,

    Couldn’t agree more with your response. For example, I believe it was in the eight inning of 2004 ALCS Game 5 at Fenway Park when Tony Clark hit what normally would have been a go ahead eventual game winning double. But the ball took a hop that even Red Sox fans said was unusual and bounced in the stands for a ground rule double, causing a run to be erased. That bad bounce caused untold misery to each and every one of us.

  85. jennifer- Hip Hip Jorge January 14th, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    Drive 4-5

    Also shouldn’t Torre have argued that, that run should have counted. Since he def would have scored if the ball didn’t bounce in the stands.

  86. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Torre did not argue an awful lot.

  87. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 4:01 pm

    although your elegant argument flies directly in the face of everyone who wants to do nothing but bitch and moan and point fingers at people b/c things didn’t go their way.
    ——————————————————–
    That’s no way to speak about the President of the United States!

  88. hmmm January 14th, 2008 at 4:03 pm

    “Torre did not argue an awful lot.”

    Torre was way too “classy” to argue something like a potential pennant winning run.

  89. jennifer- Hip Hip Jorge January 14th, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    hmm, you mean like when he didn’t pull his team off the field with the midgets. What a classy man, the last thing everyone will remember about him is he left Joba on the field to be eaten alive. :P

  90. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 4:13 pm

    Drive 4-5: I remember that well. I was jumping up and down after that hit. The ball had spin and I think just hopped into the 1st or 2nd row. The runner had all but scored.

    Another play that could have changed the WS:
    The Jeff Meier (interferred with) HR -and -
    The Jeter ‘Flip’ (I think Giambi was out but called safe because 1) It was a miraculous play 2) Giambi Jr. did NOT slid – and -
    The Posada Double – Pedro beats Jorge, breaks his bat, but it drops in – and -
    2001 Mariano missed DP AND Mo breaks Gonzo’s bat but an infield pop wins the game

    There are so many.
    2 – WS 9th inning game tying HRs. First time in history
    How close was Roberts SB? Safe by 1/20th of a second? Out?

    In 2003, we outhit, outslug, out field and out ERA’ed the fish. Pavano (he who shall not be named) pitches the best game of his career.
    2006 Kenny Rogers (on steroids?)
    So, so many.
    But the absolute best… the truest practical joke by the Gods…
    Those D*mned MIDGES!!!!!!!!

    And if anyone was around for the 1969 Miracle Mets….
    There was NO WAY they could even compete with a POWERHOUSE Baltimore team. Yet they won in 5. It was a miracle!

  91. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    Torre lost a lot of support that night. Maybe it’s a good thing he decided not to return. (Just for the record, I’m happy about Girardi)

  92. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 4:15 pm

    jennifer – first off, Mel is NOT a midget.
    Second – some flying bugs are called Midges

  93. Drive 4-5 January 14th, 2008 at 4:20 pm

    I do believe that the Divisional Series should be 7 games. Like Old Yanks Fan mentioned,the best team doesn’t always win. But I think the best team does stand a better chance of prevailing in a longer series.

  94. Doreen January 14th, 2008 at 4:26 pm

    Old Yanks Fan

    The 1969 World Series was my introduction to baseball, so I had no idea how miraculous it actually was at the time. In retrospect – all you can say is Wow!

    Hopefully the midges will be the last time the gods choose to have a little fun with the Yankees, no?

  95. dan January 14th, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    Although Steve writes one of the most popular Yankee blogs, he has to be one of the most hated. Just lay off Cashman a little bit. Maybe? No? Ok fine.

  96. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    ~~~Although Steve writes one of the most popular Yankee blogs, he has to be one of the most hated. Just lay off Cashman a little bit. Maybe? No? Ok fine.~~~

    Geez, do people really hate me? That’s so sad.

  97. Hideki Balboni January 14th, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    The post-season is a crapshoot. The best you can do is construct a team that will get there.

  98. Wolf In Pinstripes January 14th, 2008 at 5:47 pm

    Steve – that took me right back through my childhood and teen years (70′s – 80′s). Even with the crummy stuff that was a part of those years, it’s still a part of my life growing up that’s nice to reflect on. Great post. 8)

  99. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 6:42 pm

    Yes…. It’s wonderful to know that people will HATE YOU because you happen you have a different opinion then they do. It’s why our 2 party political system works so smoothly.

    Steve is a nice guy. I can tell by the font he uses.
    Steve likes to challenge conventional wisdom. Unchallengeable stuff like “Jeter is a great defensive SS” and “the Yankees are WAAAAAAAAAAAAY better then the Sox” and stuff like that. No wonder people ‘hate him’.
    (the nerve!)

  100. dan January 14th, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    Steve, I don’t think that people necessarily hate you, they just disagree with a lot of what you say. I generally don’t read the comments section of this blog because of the stupidity that often comes from one person running his or her mouth (and everyone feeding into it), but the readers of other blogs like RAB and Bronx Block generally don’t express the amount of negative sentiments that your readers do.

    I am a regular reader of WasWatching, and generally only comment when I disagree with something (usually cashman or prospects).

    And I just wanted to say that the exchange between Bob from NJ and Matt Schweber was hilarious. Guys, it was a blog post about the yankees, calm down.

  101. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 7:48 pm

    Thanks Wolf – and, LOL Old Yanks Fan!

    And, Dan, thanks to you too. Very interesting feedback – and always appreciated.

  102. Old Yanks Fan January 14th, 2008 at 7:55 pm

    Well Dan – it’s not like Steve is intentionally controversial or anything….
    Anyway, I think one thinks more, and learns more, when one debates with someone you disagree with, rather then cheerlead with someone you disagree with.

    It takes a lot of balls to put yourself out there in a public forum and express views that you know people may disagree with. It’s one of the things that sets WasWatching apart. It is always safe to go with ‘conventional wisdom’, but what makes this country great is the diversity of opinions and people willing to support their stance.

    Steve’s blog is like pistachio ice cream. Somewhat eclectic and sometimes nutty, but an interesting and different flavor none the less.

  103. Will January 14th, 2008 at 9:00 pm

    Do I think El Duque, Clemens and Justice were very instrumental in the Yankees winning from 1998-2000? ABSOLUTELY. You make it seem like Cashman could have gone on autopilot with the core from 1996 and still won. Those three names are just examples of key contributors that Cashman added. You could also throw in guys like Brosius, Chad Curtis and the decision to swap out Jimmy Key for David Wells. In other words, Cashman’s moves were very instrumental in the later three titles.

    As for the Yankees only win because the Red Sox fail argument, well, I think it’s pretty obvious that’s a sily argument, so I’d drop that one if I was you. It only exposes a predisposition to knock Cashman, facts be damned.

  104. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    ~~~As for the Yankees only win because the Red Sox fail argument, well, I think it’s pretty obvious that’s a sily argument, so I’d drop that one if I was you. ~~~

    Check the math. If the Red Sox don’t have those historic collapses in 2005 and 2006, then, more than likely, the Yankees don’t first first. And, yes, they were historic chokes by the Sox.

  105. Steve Lombardi January 14th, 2008 at 11:26 pm

    Well, that’s a wrap for me here today. Thanks again for Pete on the guest slot. Feel better soon Pete!

    Thanks to all for all the feedback. And, of course…

    Let’s go Yankees!

  106. dougj1 January 15th, 2008 at 5:21 am

    I’ll take the Yanks of the late 40s through early 60s. Not only great teams but great broadcasters like Mel Allen, Russ Hodges & Curt Gowdy all were with Yanks. Those teams had pitching whch has been lacking for 3-4 years. Nothing impresses me about Cashman.Yankees owners, Topping & Webb let George Weiss make baseball decisions. Steinbrenner family interferes too much and can only offer money & nothing else…Club is competitive, but not championship caliber.Yanks need a GM like Dombrowsky, but why would anyone with self respect work for GS family.

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