You know, the peaceful transition of power is a truly remarkable thing and for those of you who watched C-Span this morning, I’m sure you saw the elaborate swearing-in ceremony in which I took the Oath of Office for the LoHud Yankees Blog.
It was glorious – my wife held a copy of “The Yankee Years” for me to place my hand upon, Pete was sitting one row over awaiting his helicopter flight to a retirement community in Del Boca Vista and Chief Justice Ruben Sierra issued the oath, stumbling over a few words but getting the gist of it. Ronan Tynan sang “God Bless America” and, as we exited, Challenger the Eagle flew in and nearly knocked over Randy Levine. It was beautiful. ….
Anyway. It’s a pleasure to be hanging out with you all for a week as Pete recharges his batteries before what will surely be a long (thanks, WBC!) spring training. Since it’s a certainty that I’m not as tapped into the world of Yankees news on the internet as I once was, I invite any links, thoughts and comments at firstname.lastname@example.org – I’m sure you guys will help me keep the posts fresh and insightful over these next seven days. Let’s do Pete proud.
I thought an appropriate way to start might be to pay homage to the end of football season/beginning of baseball season by doing a post in the style of the esteemed Sports Illustrated writer Peter King. Thus, here are 10 things I think I think:
1. I think you guys are going to be missing Pete pretty badly by about 12:30 this afternoon, if not sooner. Sorry. He’s the best, there’s no doubt.
2. I think there is no way Brett Gardner or Melky Cabrera will start the most games in center field for the Yankees this season. You don’t spend all this cash on other players not to get an established CF at some point along the way. There’s a deal to be made somewhere and the Yankees will make it.
3. I think this will be the last year of Andy Pettitte’s career and, unfortunately for the Yankees, I don’t think it will look much like the last year of Mike Mussina’s career.
4. I think Phil Hughes will win 12 games this year.
5. I think the Yankees better find a decent catcher to fill in when Posada isn’t as healthy as they hope.
6. I think they need to find a way to get Nick Swisher some at-bats.
7. I think the bullpen worries me a little. Ok, a lot. Rivera is coming off surgery but you give him a pass. The setup guys? Without Joba, it’s just so hit-and-miss. The Rays proved last year that non-closer relievers can rise up out of nowhere, but it’s hard for me to have tons of faith in what the Yankees have right now. (Though I do like Edwar Ramirez – see below)
8. I think Edwar Ramirez could be the Yankees’ version of Scot Shields from a few years ago. High strikeout numbers, dominant set-up guy, kinda skinny – there was a time when Shields setting up for K-Rod was an unreal combo. Ramirez certainly has that potential.
9. I think these are my quick Super Bowl thoughts:
a. Last year’s fourth quarter was better – though not by much.
b. LOVED the Doritos commercial where the guy threw the “crystal ball” through the vending machine glass.
c. Michaels and Madden did a very good job.
d. For those that read my Daily News blog, you’ll be pleased to know that “The Girlfriend” became “The Wife” and that she makes an unbelievable chili on Super Bowl Sunday.
10. I think the rest of my posts probably won’t be nearly this long. Sorry again.