Thursday, September 03, 2015


If you're any kind of baseball historian - which basically means that you've watched baseball a long time - you know the best way to blow a season is to completely misuse your pitchers. Yankee manager Joe Girardi is about to do just that.
It's so bad, that the minute Girardi walks out of the dugout, I know something dumb is about to happen. Joe has only TWO relievers in the bullpen, that is, only two that he trusts. Dellin Betances is supposed to be the 8th inning guy, but Joe can't seem to get through the 7th inning without bringing in the big guy. Shreve, Wilson and Warren aren't trusted to get anywhere near critical situations and it's got to be wearing on their confidence. Last night the Yanks were pounding Boston 13-5, when things started to go wrong in the 8th inning.  I asked Annie-O if Andrew Miller was warming up yet. She laughed and said, "No, it's Betances first."  Then we both laughed. When NY's 8-run lead shrunk(?) to 6, Girardi almost ran out to the mound to bring in Betances. He did let someone else start the 9th (a rookie, no less) but with the lead now down to five - that's five, boys and girls - here comes Miller.
The Yanks may make the division race tight, but I think the bullpen will eventually blow up and the Yanks will lose. Girardi is always saying that he likes his bullpen - he just doesn't like them actually in the game.

Speaking of confidence builders, What the heck did Joe do for rookie Rico Noel's self esteem last night?  This fellow, who hasn't been able to hit double or triple A pitching, was brought up to be solely a pinch-runner because of his speed. Last night Girardi puts him in the outfield as a defensive replacement. In the bottom of the inning, Noel comes up to bat with two outs and a man on third in a 12-7 Yankee lead. Nope, out comes a pinch hitter. Poor Noel plays exactly one half inning. Sure had to feel good about his Major League debut.

Can someone please tell David Cone to just shut up? He makes one point and then beats it into the ground, repeating  it in three or four different ways. We get it, Coney. Last night he said Boston's Green Monster has a heartbeat, so for the next two innings, we had to listen to "Thump-thump, thump-thump." Really cute, David, really cute. Al Leiter talks too much too, but it least it's instructive. 
Coney also likes to take both sides of an issue: in one breath he talks about cybernetics being so useful, but in the next, he talks about the "eye-test," which means you can tell a lot by watching how the players go about playing. How about the ear-test David? You've said enough when my ears start to bleed!

Why professional sports is such a great career:
 “No more calls, we have a winner! Arrest of the year: Jets defensive end Sheldon Richardson, already on NFL suspension for flunking a drug test, is arrested for allegedly driving 143 mph, resisting arrest, tailgating, driving without lights and running a red light. Cops say they find a fully-loaded semiautomatic handgun in the car, which reeks of weed. Awesome.”  -- Scott Ostler

"Potential sports commentator’s nightmare: A May-December relationship between Maria Sharapova and rising Canadian tennis star Denis Shapolalov. -- RJ Currie
"The Minnesota Vikings led the NFL with 18 arrests in the past five years, with the Denver Broncos No. 2. I believe this means crime is caused by cold weather."  -- Brad Dickson
"Been a tough year for the SF Giants with injuries, but at least they didn’t spend $95 million on Pablo Sandoval. Who at .247 for the Boston Red Sox may not be hitting his weight."  -- Janice Hough

"Negeri Sembilan FA, a Malaysian soccer team, released all but six of its players, saying they faked injuries so as not to play but still collect pay.Things apparently came to a header when one claimed his paycheck gave him a paper cut."  -- Dwight Perry.
"The Tennessee football team are the Kardashians of the SEC, They look good, but they haven’t done anything."  -- Pat Dooley, Gainsville (Fla) Sun
"New Clippers forward Josh Smith, who will earn a combined $6.4 million from L.A. and Detroit next season, complained about his pay. In other news, Greece just asked him for a loan."  -- Brad Dickson
"Canada’s Shawn Barber won pole-vaulting gold at the world track and field championships. It’s easy to spot Barber: his pole has red and white stripes."  -- RJ Currie
 "Tim Tebow stopped a fight at the Philadelphia Eagles training camp. He didn’t stop it so much as he raised his arms and the fight parted."  -- Alex Kaseberg
"“Have you heard the radio commercial for a new toilet so strong you can flush a bucket of golf balls down it? How frustrated are you with your golf game when you require something like this?”  -- Brad Dickson


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