Last night Michael Pineda capped a so-so Spring with his worst performance to date, getting knocked around by the Phillies for 6 ER in 2.2 innings and (still) failing to touch even once the 95 mph mark that his fastball averaged last season. During the game YES announcer David Cone noted that Pineda seemed to be pulling his fastballs so they were both hooking and – presumably – coming out of his hand with less velocity than they should. Russell Martin later confirmed this. It seemed all but certain that Pineda would begin the 2012 season in Scranton Wilkes-Barre. And then, this news broke. Bummer, though not a disaster.
Saturday, March 31st, 2012
Wednesday, March 28th, 2012
The regular season began today, with Seattle "visiting" Oakland in Japan. Ichiro went 4 for 5, as the Mariners won in 11 innings. The game started at 2am Pacific time, which was a tad inconvenient for the left coast fan base of those teams. There is another game tomorrow morning, with Jason Vargas facing our old friend Bartolo Colon It's a stupid gimmick game and they should stop doing it. Now back to your regularly scheduled wait for next Friday.
Friday, March 23rd, 2012
From The Times:
“Chamberlain, who had been rehabbing from elbow surgery, was playing with his kindergarten-age son at a children’s play facility in Tampa and sustained an open dislocation of his right ankle, with the bone protruding through the skin.”
Update.. Krueg beat me to the post.. here’s the link he posted to the story at ESPN. Frankly, there is no positive side to this story.
Monday, March 19th, 2012
America’s great national wait is over. Peyton Manning’s handlers announced in the middle of negotiations with Denver that they have been instructed to talk with the New York Yankees. Manning becomes the number one starter on a pitching staff already bolstered by the potential return of Andy Pettitte, assuming that Pettitte doesn’t totally suck out in the minors. Freddy Garcia responded to the news of this latest addition to the burgeoning rotation: “I’m fucking pissed.”
The relief of a nation was best expressed by Mitt Romney, who was reached for comment in his Maybach in transit between his country club and his metropolitan athletic club: “Thank God. My campaign coordinator was certain Mr. Manning was going to declare himself the Republican nominee for President. I feel like I just passed a cue ball.”
Perhaps no one felt relief more than Denver quarterback Tim Tebow. “I guess, first and foremost, I’d like to thank my..” Tebow was interrupted by a profanity-laden tirade from John Elway, who threw a chair through a window before storming out of the room.
Friday, March 16th, 2012
Friday, March 9th, 2012
Jonathon Papelbon offers up his insight about Boston Red Sox fans in a bizarre stand-alone quote with little context on an AP feed:
“The difference between Boston and Philadelphia, the Boston fans are a little bit more hysterical when it comes to the game of baseball,” Papelbon said in a radio interview with Philadelphia’s 94-WIP. “The Philly fans tend to know the game a little better, being in the National League, you know, the way the game is played. I’ve had a guy take of his prosthetic leg and throw it in the bullpen in Boston.”
It’s such a shame when one doesn’t appreciate a gift until it is gone.
Thursday, March 8th, 2012
All happy teams are happy in the same way. All unhappy teams are unhappy in their own ways. Or something to that effect. Right now, the Yanks are super happy, just like every team is in early March. Joe Girardi is into hokey team-building activities that build team happiness, such as nights out at the improv, pizza parties, and this:
With an eye toward team unity, Joe Girardi decided that one afternoon at the Improv wasn’t enough. The manager has implemented a new tradition that calls for a different player or two to stand in front of the entire team every morning and recite a quote of his choosing, followed by an explanation of what the quote means to him.
“Words from your teammates can be really powerful,” Girardi told the Daily News. “They can be motivating. It also tells you a little something about that person from what they pick, so we get to know them. It’s worked out well.”
Rodriguez, however, impressed by taking a unique approach. He declined to discuss his presentation, but a witness said that instead of reciting a quote, the third baseman took the word “score” and used each letter to deliver a different message.
“What Alex did, it blew me away,” Eric Chavez said. “To get up in front of the whole team, out of your element, he really embraced it. I don’t see myself doing that. I can’t knock down those walls, so to see Al do it, it was like, ‘Wow.’”
Said A-Rod: “One of the hardest things to do is to communicate in front of your peers. I bet if you asked them, some guys would probably be more nervous about doing that than playing in the World Series. It’s hard to stand in front of 85 people that you trust and respect. It makes you feel vulnerable. It’s a great exercise and it’s setting the right tempo for our team.”
Girardi came up with the routine as he sought to better use the 15-minute block of time he had set aside to meet with the team each morning
“It just kind of came to me,” said Girardi, who often receives inspirational quotes via email from his friend, basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman. “The biggest fear in life is public speaking, so this really encourages them to do a lot of different things.”
Girardi gave his players only two rules they must follow when choosing their quote. They were not allowed to use any of the motivational quotes that hang in and around the clubhouse at Steinbrenner Field or ask Chad Bohling, the team’s director of mental conditioning, for help.
Why a Yankee player would use a quotation from anyone besides Yogi Berra for this exercise is beyond me. Still, I continue to rue the day I was born with the genes with which I was born, since they did not lead to a career in baseball and the opportunity to witness A-Rod's "score" speech first-hand. I have my guesses for what each letter stood for, but am only mildly confident that the slugger's odd mix of bland corporate-speak and peculiar psycho-sexual revelation led to the "S" standing for "Synergy" and the "E" representing "Erotic". It's the middle letters that are a mystery. Any guesses?
h/t to waswatching.
Tuesday, March 6th, 2012
To read the Washington Post tell it, PH is a fat, lazy slob and Girardi is riding him like a rented mule. When you read the actual quotes, Hughes came into camp early and has been working hard to earn his position as a starter, impressing Girardi, though one has to wonder if Hughes’ various troubles could have been partially the result of a lack of conditioning and/or work ethic. Regardless, it’s good to know that the competition is lively between Hughes, Nova, Pineda, and Garcia to join C.C. and Kuroda in the rotation. Sabathia and Hughes are both slated to pitch today against the Pirates.
Sunday, March 4th, 2012
ARod took Doc deep in his first at bat, and Lars Anderson hit a granny for the Sox. When my phone woke up and started spitting me box scores from the grapefruit and cactus leagues, I just about wept with joy.
What a beautiful thing is baseball.