Bunch of Nancies

Ahh, ESPN. So woefully out of touch, so universally discredited among baseball fans, yet still singled out by dumb bloggers who give them more credit than they’re worth by posting links to their site and complaining about them.

In ESPN’s second Power Rankings, posted eight games into the season, the Red Sox fall from the preseason rank of third — all the way to ninth. The Yankees, at the time with an identical 4-4 record, drop all the way from first … to second.

The reason? Well, the Yankees have A-Rod, duh. And the Red Sox have … J.D. Drew.

Alex Rodriguez has more home runs (six) than the Mariners and A’s entire teams have combined (five). … There’s not much to complain about yet with J.D. Drew (.393 BA) … but don’t worry — in time there will be.

Sheesh. Did Pete Abraham write these summaries or something? I take solace in the fact that the more ESPN disses the Red Sox, the greater the chances of the Sox actually winning the World Series.

36 comments… add one
  • I love when ESPN does this. I think sometimes they purposely do this crap to curb the “ESPN loves the Red Sox” chant from New York. It really makes no difference at all, but it is funny, and in reality, that Yankees linuep is pretty gross. Of course, without pitchers, that point is irrelevant.
    ESPN has made me very ill towards them over the past few weeks.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 10:21 am
  • Ya, that’s before the DL-ing of many pitchers, so don’t worry about it too much. I was surprised that the Yanks were #1 last week though, but I think the Mets deserves it. No clue about the Sox.

    Lar April 17, 2007, 10:29 am
  • I guess ESPN doesn’t include fielding errors in their power ranking… The Yankees rate 30th out of 30 MLB teams.

    Hudson April 17, 2007, 10:33 am
  • “Of course, without pitchers, that point is irrelevant.”
    Yeah you are right Brad, lets cancel the season now. I mean no pitcher could ever come back from a hamstring injury, it’s unheard of.
    As for the rankings, please ESPN should be called ERSN 99.9% of the time, so I don’t feel bad. Are the rankings true, right now no, so you have a point. But Yankee fans know where ESPN’s true allegiance lies.

    Triskaidekaphobia April 17, 2007, 10:48 am
  • “Of course, without pitchers, that point is irrelevant”
    Whoa, Trisk. Calm down. Nothing I’ve said isn’t true. I wasn’t talking about what the rankings should look like in a perfect world, and when everyone comes back form their DL stints, but rather what they should look like now. Who said anything about cancelling the season? All I was pointing out is that this week, there is a real chance the Yankees are going to start Jeff Karstens and some kid I’ve never heard of, so in no way does that constitute everythink being ok.
    But, as Lar points out the ranking were picked before, well, I’m sure you know.
    If, in your own mind, the Yankees deserve to be there with what you’ve seen thus far from them, I don’t know what to tell you.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:01 am
  • But Yankee fans know where ESPN’s true allegiance lies.
    Yeah, that’s why they are ninth. Because ESPN loves them, and is ignoring the pitching dominance so far this year. They’re ignoring the great defense, and ever improving offense because it’s where their allegiance lies?
    C’Mon, Trisk.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:04 am
  • Aside from the house ads and the occasional Baseball Tonight, does ESPN do anything right?
    No.
    I drew attention to ESPN’s BREAKING NEWS announcement on Rodriguez being the first NYY player to hit five homers in the first six games of the season (it is a footnote not a mainbar) and was chastised here (a bit) by a Yankee fan who (appropriately) reminded me that we should never count on ESPN to give anything proper context and perspective. He was (and is) right.
    (Rant begins) When we complain about ESPN, we are saying that we expect them to get it right, that we believe they have high standards of quality, accuracy and propriety. We all know better than that by now, or at least we should. ESPN has a knack of falling all over itself and putting itself in the way of damn near everything it tries to do. In fact, ESPN does so many things so poorly that I continue to be amazed that Fox can somehow manage to do it even worse. (rant ends)
    These rankings, like the NCAA polls, are an opinion and a snapshot. And frankly, 10-12 games into the season, these power rankings could be done 1,000 different ways and you could appropriately support each one. So save yourself the aggravation — don’t even look.

    I'm Bill McNeal April 17, 2007, 11:08 am
  • Right, Bill.
    And, let’s be honest here. What the hell would we do without ESPN? What would I watch when I get up in the morning?
    ha.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:14 am
  • Gentlemen, I could care less about the rankings. Right now rank us 30, that’s 100% fine with me. This is not about rankings. But if it allows you to puff out your chest 3 weeks into the season, I hereby declare the Sox #1!!!
    My problem is all the talk about the injuries the Yankees have sustained sounds like a “We told you so” attitude. The injuries so far have been freak things, the same freak things could have happened to anyone. But most would like to contribute this to age or injuries of the past. Regardless injuries happen to every team sooner or later, we are just getting ours all out at once.
    As for Chase Wright, not really all that concerned. After all Al Leiter went in to Fenway and helped us grit out a win, so anything is possible.
    Brad, you don’t watch ESPN if you don’t think they heart the Red Sox. One ranking doesn’t change that.

    Triskaidekaphobia April 17, 2007, 11:20 am
  • Okay, Trisk. Whatever you say, bro.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:33 am
  • Now you’ve got it, good boy Brad.

    Triskaidekaphobia April 17, 2007, 11:36 am
  • ha. Hardly, your argument is full of spite and anger, and for what it’s worth, when Schilling, Pettitte (for god’s sake, it’s Pettitte) and Mussina were signed, then hurt, everyone did in fact have the “told you so” attitude. It’s not a surprise any one of them is hurt, and should have been expected at the least.
    Of course there’s no way to expect it so early, or from the likes of Matsui, but c’mon, did eveyone come out en masse to get behing Carl Pavano’s newfound ability to stay not injured? Things are hardly “freak things” when it comes to a few of the pitcher on either staff. Freak things would be Matsui or Wang…not Mussina and Pavano.
    In fact, I did tell you so. And now, I’m right… so far. I’m sure I’ll be right again with Schilling at some point, just not right now.
    Al Leiter…Really? You’re comparing Jeff Karstens and Chase Wright to Al Leiter?
    Also, nobody declared the Sox as number one here, less you of course.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:48 am
  • All that being said, I’m nearly certian that Chase Wright is going to throw a seven inning shutout.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 11:58 am
  • Hey ag, your “comment away” thread doesn’t accept comments, and also, Swisher didn’t hit the HR (to nit)!

    Lar April 17, 2007, 12:05 pm
  • 1- For the last time can someone please explain to me how Mussina’s hammy injury was to be expected? Are you serious? Because he is in his late 30’s we are to expect hamstring injuries? What about hang nails, hemerroids or blisters is that covered too? Had he injured his shoulder or elbow I would agree, but hamstring? Just as freak an accident as Matsui or Wang.
    2- Who knows what happens to Pavano, but me not being the glass half empty type of guy I’m not shocked that a pitcher who hasn’t pitched in 2 seasons has forearm issues. Now as far as he goes, “I told you so” cannot be defended, but it’s also not a buttocks injury, it’s something common with pitchers who haven’t thrown a lot.
    3- No anger, no spite, I am simply stating that ESPN historically loves the Sox and RSN. Why would I be angry over rankings? Over a sub par first 3 weeks? After last season, nothing can get me angry, at least this time around we won’t have to call Kris Wilson or Sidney Ponson.
    4- You know what I meant when I said Al Leiter. When he pitched that game in Fenway he was 1/3 the man he was in the past. Overall career, no comparison. That game in Fenway, I would take Wright and Karstens any day.
    5- I said I declare the Red Sox #1, where’s the controversy in that statement? (Hmmm I have heard that somewhere before)

    Triskaidekaphobia April 17, 2007, 12:09 pm
  • It’s kind of freakish to me since it seems like *everybody* on the Yanks got the same type of injuries..
    Though it’s early, so I hope they all come back, peaking in the postseason! =)

    Lar April 17, 2007, 12:11 pm
  • By the way, to be fair, I’m sure if Drew gets hit by a pitch again somehow, some fans will also say “I told you so”. That guy does have his share of freak accidents, but ya..

    Lar April 17, 2007, 12:12 pm
  • Brad, Do you remember what Al Leiter’s record was when he came to Yanks? He wasn’t “Al Leiter” anymore.
    John

    john April 17, 2007, 12:12 pm
  • Hi Lar, sorry about that. I was editing it as a draft; hadn’t really meant for that piece to go live yet as we’re a ways in front of game time.

    attackgerbil April 17, 2007, 12:13 pm
  • ag – ah, caught it on the RSS feed. It confused me a bit and made me double check the game start time =)

    Lar April 17, 2007, 12:14 pm
  • No, the “told you so” attitude doesn’t stem from the hamstring part of the argument, but rather just the DL issues itself. He’s been there at least once a year in the past three of four years, and hasn’t pitched 200 innings since 2003.
    I’m thinking that the fact that he’s on the DL for anyting isn’t a surprise to any of us, but maybe how early it is surprised few. If Schilling or Timlin pulled a hamstring in the next time out, would you be surprised? If so, we’re not watching the same players.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 12:17 pm
  • John, no I don’t. I do remember he was had for nothing, but that’s not the argument here. Pedro isn’t what he used to be either, but if he’s healty, he’s still more than capable of pitching a gem. There’s a difference between guys who have that ability and guys who dont, or haven’t shown it yet.
    Besides, I’ve already said the kid is going to throw a shutout. What more can I do to praise this kid and his awesome ability? I mean, really, the minor league numbers are stunning.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 12:21 pm
  • Pedro Vs. Leiter…Uggh you are off your rocker. This guy had NOTHING in his tank when he came to the yankees. He reminded me of the pitcher from Major League….You rub snot on the ball? Vagisil, Bardol….

    Triskaidekaphobia April 17, 2007, 12:31 pm
  • he, you’re too much.

    Brad April 17, 2007, 12:37 pm
  • Frankly I don’t care where ESPN “power ranks” the Sox, just as I don’t care what the Vegas lines are (whoever looks at Vegas lines for an idea of “respect” doesn’t understand Vegas). I don’t care, for the most part, where anyone rates the Sox or the Yankees right now – they’re both good and probably will spend a fair amount of time beating on each other. The standings are more important than any ESPN power ranking, right?
    But I do have a (minor) issue with the commentary added to the rankings: the JD Drew quip is both old, stupid, and pretty baseless, and certainly you’d think (or hope) that an outfit like ESPN, that runs Baseball Tonight and employs some seriously good writers on the subject, could do better. Frankly, the “power rankings” are probably written by people who are just breaking into ESPN, who are trying their hardest to infuse a regular feature with what they think is snark, sarcasm, and humor, to establish their cutesy bona fides in front of Stu Scott and the rest of that crew. In this case it comes off as stupid and uninformed, at least to me.

    SF April 17, 2007, 12:43 pm
  • You say that now. Wait until JD Drew checks his swing and his arm explodes off of his body and flies into the stands.
    Do you think he’d autograph it?

    Kazz April 17, 2007, 12:52 pm
  • He’d be ejected for throwing it at a fan.
    Two things, other than SC ads and the occasional Baseball Tonight (this counts Peter Gammons), that ESPN gets right:
    Its stats pages.
    Mike & Mike in the Morning.
    I think that’s about it though,

    Paul SF April 17, 2007, 1:14 pm
  • The opinions I hear in Chicago are that ESPN favors the Yankees and Red Sox, in no particular order.
    I would agree with that.
    They represent the two largest and most vocal fan bases in MLB, and they always seem to have something interesting (soap opera-ish, even, sometimes), going on.
    (As big a fan base as the Cubs have, and it is big and for God sake it doesn’t EVER shut up, it certainly isn’t as interesting as the Red Sox or Yankees.)

    I'm Bill McNeal April 17, 2007, 1:40 pm
  • i can not recommend the new Strike Zone Channel (SZC) that comes with MLB Extra Innings enough. it is 1000% times better than Baseball Tonight. they drop into every big at bat live. essentially, it’s a guy who sits in a studio with a remote and jumps from game to game. it’s got a ton of attitude, but 2 tons of info and analysis. plus the MLB Game Mix gives you 8 games on one screen. well worth the money. i have to believe ESPN is sweatin with MLB and NFL owning their own sports coverage channels.

    sf rod April 17, 2007, 1:42 pm
  • ESPN jumped the shark about five years ago. They haven’t really been relevant in the past ten years. I don’t bother reading or watching anything they put out. Almost none of it is information-based. The vast majority of it is human interest stories and who can yell the loudest. There are so many better sources of information out there that ESPN just isn’t necessary anymore.

    mattymatty April 17, 2007, 2:25 pm
  • Foxsports Mlb Power Rankings
    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/powerRankings
    Indians ranks #1 this week, follow by Dbacks and Mets, Redsox and Braves

    Nr-Yf April 17, 2007, 4:38 pm
  • I’d like ESPN’s baseball coverage a lot more if they’d just fire Morgan and Phillips.
    Instead, no, they retain those two choads and get rid of Reynolds, who wasn’t all that bad.

    Steve April 17, 2007, 4:44 pm
  • “After all Al Leiter went in to Fenway and helped us grit out a win”
    Am I the only person who despises the use of the word “grit” to describe things Yankee related? I don’t mean to be offensive Trisk, but it really rubs me the wrong way. Especially the use of grit as a verb. The whole concept of “Yankee grit” is really due a nice long post at firejoemorgan. Something along the lines of “Firefighters grit. Coalminers grit. The highest paid sports franchise in the coutry doesn’t grit.” Or something.
    Leiter pitched a good game. It happens. “That’s why they play the games.” Does anyone remember Darren freakin Oliver tossing a gem against the Yanks at Fenway back in 2002? Did he “grit out” that win, or did he just pitch well?
    Sorry, it’s just something tht gets my goat.
    [/soapbox]

    Tyrel SF April 17, 2007, 5:06 pm
  • It’s a pretty good bet that Sox fans won’t act the way Yankee fans want them to, Yankee fans won’t act the way Sox fans want them to, ESPN will write things we don’t agree with, etc. Getting upset about these things leads to little more than high blood pressure.

    john April 17, 2007, 7:15 pm
  • Paul, you’re nuts.
    I hate Mike & Mike. I listened to them in the morning for like a month last summer until I realized that I had never agreed with a thing they said.

    Kazz April 17, 2007, 10:19 pm
  • all i know is that espn shows way to much yankees crap. Any time i turn to espn all they talk about a-rod hr this and roger clemens coming back that, it gets old. lets hear some stuff about the braves or other teams. The yankees plan out suck right now and they get more air time than any other thing in the sports world.

    brandon May 27, 2007, 10:31 pm

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