Thursday, September 11, 2008

An Idea For A Yankees Reality Show During The Postseason; A Note For Chris Lincecum

  • Since they're not going to be playing this October, maybe there's a way to keep the Yankees in the public eye:
In general, I can't stand reality shows; the only ones I watch are Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares or whatever my fiancee watches that I happen to catch a glimpse of out of the
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corner of my eye while doing something creative and intelligent that I'm benevolent enough to share with the townspeople. That being said, I have an idea that will keep the Yankees in the spotlight this October and that is having cameras follow the principal players in former manager Joe Torre's departure as they watch him managing the Dodgers in the playoffs. It could work and it could work BIG!!!
Think about it. What kind of reactions would Randy Levine, Hank Steinbrenner, Hal Steinbrenner, Felix Lopez (they could film him taking care of the lawns on the fields in Tampa) and even Brian Cashman elicit as the Yankees are cleaning out their stadium without any post-season revenue and Torre simultaneously has his new team receiving the national exposure and is cementing his
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reputation as a "wizened baseball genius" with his thirteenth straight post-season appearance? It was Levine and the Steinbrenners who wanted Torre out and Cashman didn't go out of his way to save his longtime partner, so why not give them a forum to vent as their decision, in the short-term at least, looks horrendous?
They could even extend the coverage to broadcaster Michael Kay, who did the equivalent of dumping on Torre's Yankee managerial grave only after the manager was gone indicating some vague sense of protectiveness over the Yankees organization by not saying what he really felt about Torre over those long years as if that was part his responsibility as a supposedly "unbiased" broadcaster.
It would be even better for the show if the Dodgers had to play the Mets at some point during the playoffs, so those that are embittered enough to wish ill-will on Torre and loathe the idea that the Mets are still playing and the Yankees aren't would have to make a choice
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between rooting for their former manager or rooting for the Mets or even at some point having to root for the Red Sox. Just imagine...
I'm half-kidding about this, but there is a point. While I'm sure that the majority of the Yankees organization wishes Torre nothing but the best, you can't tell me that it's not going to make those that pushed him out the door crazy if he coaxes the Dodgers into the playoffs after their handpicked successor, Joe Girardi, had such a struggle in his first season as the manager; you can't tell me that many of the players still in that clubhouse who fondly remember Torre's handling of everything inherent with the job of managing that team don't miss him and wish he were still there.
I'm trying to imagine the irony of the Yankees hierarchy sitting in their offices watching the
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playoffs in either the NLDS game five or NLCS game seven and chanting, "Let's Go Mets!!" over and over again so they don't have to hear about Joe Torre managing in another World Series with the Dodgers while the Yankees are plotting a way to overcome the embarrassment of a $210 million payroll that finished in fourth place. After everything that happened, it would be kind of appropriate...and a ratings winner!!!
  • Chris Lincecum should strike now and write a book about his son Tim's workout regimen:
With the number of blog hits I get from people looking for information about Tim Lincecum's
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workout, mechanics and stretching program, Chris Lincecum should write a book about how he taught his son to pitch. I've already advised those that end up here looking for information not to follow advice they find on the internet without truly understanding what they're doing----Blog 8/31, but they're still searching for it and doing so at their own peril. There's a market for such a guide and he should get it out there while his son is still healthy and it's such a hot topic.
  • Rays 4-Red Sox 2:
Here's something I don't quite understand, Troy Percival was removed from the game because his back tightened up from all the warming up and sitting down throughout the game; but if he wasn't feeling right, why was he well enough to start the bottom of the fourteenth inning, but suddenly not well enough after he'd loaded the bases with nobody out and needed to be replaced because of the injury?
  • Giants 4-Diamondbacks 3:
I generally don't question pitch selection unless there's an egregious and obvious error; many times, the pitch is the right one, but is in the wrong location; but after the latest Diamondbacks loss, I
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have to wonder what catcher Miguel Montero was thinking in calling for closer Brandon Lyon to throw a high fastball instead of another curveball to Giants utilityman Eugenio Velez with two outs, two strikes, two runners on base and a one-run lead.
Maybe the Diamondbacks scouting reports said that Velez was vulnerable to a high, hard fastball and Lyon does throw in the upper nineties, but Velez had also looked clueless on two curveballs thrown by Lyon; Montero called for the high fastball; exaggerated the call by making a rising motion with his catcher's mitt; and was only in a half-squat because he wanted the pitch so high. Lyon made the pitch and Velez ripped it into the gap to score the tying and winning runs and send the Diamondbacks spiraling out of San Francisco.
And where was Diamondbacks manager Bob Melvin during all of this? During his playing
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career, Melvin was a defensively minded catcher who only lasted in the majors as long as he did (ten years) because of his defense and handling of pitchers; doesn't he see what's happening on the field and let his catcher know what he should be doing not just based on scouting reports, but by observation? I guarantee if Lyon had thrown a hard curve in the dirt, Velez would've struck out; but he threw a fastball up in Velez's eyes and the results are there for all to see, especially for a Diamondbacks team in full and apparently unstoppable free-fall.
  • Heads must roll in San Diego for the good of the organization:
Buster Olney linked an article yesterday in which Padres GM Kevin Towers wouldn't guarantee manager Bud Black's return next season----Article. It would be of infinite arrogance and a total lack of interest in the remaining fans of the team if no one took the fall for this
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soon-to-be 100 loss disaster, but should Black be the one to take the blame and pay the price?
The Padres, a Moneyball team led by their team president Sandy Alderson, install the manager and instruct him on just about every aspect of his handling of the team and pay him a relatively meager salary in comparison to other organizations. Black's done a bad job this year, there's no question about that; but look at their roster. With the lack of power that Black has is an implied lack of responsibility. If he doesn't get credit for the wins, then he shouldn't get the blame for the losses either.
I'm convinced the Padres are arrogant enough to move forward with the same crew that created this mess, but they're not that stupid (I don't think) that they'll move forward without doing something to placate an angry fan base and let them know that they're making a move even if said move isn't going to make much of a difference one way or the other. Heads are going to roll in San Diego; the question is if they're going to be the right heads; if they're sacrificing Black and no one else, then it would be little more than a sham to deflect blame from the real culprits who spawned this woeful and hapless organization into their current state, most prominently team president Sandy Alderson.

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