Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Looking Back: What I Said About the Orioles...

I was going to do a general roundup of what I said about the AL East before the season today, but with the Orioles' organization being in so much flux, I am going to look back only on what I predicted about the Birds of Baltimore.

Here's what I said:

In the end, the Orioles need to decide whether they want to compete or rebuild. On paper, they look slightly better than what their 70-92 record indicates, but in my eyes, it looked like a lot of the players were not trying and accepted the way things were.

However, I think we are quite a bit away from contending, but if all goes well a .500 record is attainable. There needs to be a plan with the organization, whether to rebuild around Tejada, and get the bats we need, or perhaps consider trading our strongest chips, outside Bedard, Cabrera, Markakis and Loewen and see if we can get young talent under our control to compete perhaps in ’09 or ’10. The team looks to be greatly improved on paper, but as of now, we are nowhere near the Yankees, Red Sox or Blue Jays in terms of talent. We’ll have to see how the young pitching develops and if Markakis turns into the next big thing.

If competing and contending ever becomes palatable again here in Baltimore for the Orioles, there are more changes to be needed with the makeup of this team.

Looking back at these paragraphs nearly seven, eight months later, I could not see at the time how right I was. Well, we finished with a worse record than in 2006, and things seem to not have not gotten better -- in fact, they are far worse.

A Cruel Business - Grady Little and Joe Torre

I feel sorry for Grady Little.

It's like deja vu all over again, this time this departure may be even more cruel. I can understand why the Dodgers did what they did, but you just do not do that to a long-tenured baseball guy, especially when he's been a winner.

Based on rumors of Torre being hired as manager of the Dodgers, and Joe Girardi apparently spurning them too, rather than have the carpet swept from under him, Little resigned as manager of the Dodgers.

Not pleased with their 82 wins in 2007, the Dodgers were looking to replace Little with another guy - even though the organization gave the man a full vote of confidence in the offseason.

Would you blame Grady Little for leaving? It's easier to quit than to be fired quite frankly.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Orioles Quick Hits; Shelby, A New Hire, Ripken & Other Stuff...

The World Series is over, and this week, there have been quite a few changes ushered within the Orioles' organization.

The first move that was made happened to be in terms of coaching staff as the team hired old school Oriole and part of the '83 Championship squad, "T-Bone" John Shelby.

Acoording to the Baltimore Sun: Shelby, who was the Pirates' first base coach the past two seasons after occupying that role for eight seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, becomes the third new addition to the Orioles' coaching staff since Opening Day 2007. There will be a fourth when Trembley decides on a bench coach to replace Tom Trebelhorn.

"I called quite a few clubs. I had no idea the Orioles had a vacancy at first base," said Shelby, who will replace Sam Mejias and also work with the club's outfielders. "Dave called me and made me feel like I was a part of the staff from the first time I talked to him. He had me so convinced that I was an Oriole that I wound up turning down a couple of jobs before I got this one. We're ready to go to work. This is exciting."

Trembley, intent on calling upon the organization's winning past, talked to several former Orioles about joining his staff, including B.J. Surhoff and Mike Bordick, and was pleased when Shelby became available. Shelby, 49, who played parts of 11 seasons in the Orioles organization and was on the 1983 World Series-winning team, was encouraged to seek other job opportunities after Pirates manager Jim Tracy was fired earlier this month.

There's more news on the Shelby hire from the Baltimore Examiner, Oriole Magic &

Also, the organization added a new face, Lee MacPhail, who will be named the assistant to president of baseball operations. Although some will cry 'nepotism', at this point, nothing else has worked, so might as well give him a shot.

More info (Baltimore Sun): Lee MacPhail IV, a 38-year-old who was born and raised in Baltimore, spent last season as a pro scout with the Minnesota Twins. MacPhail worked with the Orioles from 1986 to 1995, starting as a public relations intern before ultimately serving as Orioles assistant director of player development and scouting under Doug Melvin.

He followed Melvin to the Texas Rangers in 1996 when he was an assistant to the GM. He also spent two seasons as the Cleveland Indians scouting director. After scouting for the Twins for three years, MacPhail spent five years in scouting and administrative capacities for the Montreal/Washington franchise before returning to Minnesota.

Also, the Orioles hired Brian Graham as a special assignment coach for the minor leagues.

It looks like the culture change is taking shape, and at this point change is good. It's been ten years of losing and we might as well turn a new leaf and see what comes of it.

As well, there will be more hires and more changes to come, including hiring a top level guy who'll have a huge role in determining talent and personnel decisions. When the calendar page flips into November, there should be moves on the roster side, including what to do with Tejada and other players.

Roch Kubatko has more on the developments along with some opinions off the off-season in his blog, Roch Around the Clock...


In other Oriole related news, Cal Ripken has started his duties as a Department of State special envoy, and Rick Maese has an article on the Sun's website on Cal Ripken's experiences in China and how he is interacting with the kids.

Spencer Fordin has a mailbag out this week on the Orioles MLB site and the topics range from Kevin Millar's stunt two weekends ago, to the closer situation, Ramon Hernandez and Danys Baez.

I'll have thoughts from the season in upcoming posts on the blog. Have a good evening, everyone...

Monday, October 29, 2007

Your World Champions: The Boston Red Sox

Red Sox Nation did not have to wait a lifetime for their second World Series after taking it in 2004. The Red Sox celebrated their second World Series title in four seasons, in a close game on Sunday, but the Rockies after making things exciting in the eighth inning, could not beat the powerful Boston lineup.

They defeated the Colorado Rockies, 4-3, last night in Denver to complete the four-game sweep.

Congratulations to the Boston Red Sox and their fans for a job well done.

(photo from Yahoo Sports)

Alex Rodriguez Opts Out of Deal With the Yankees...

Some people are just attention hogs to begin with.

Last night, Alex Rodriguez and Scott Boras took that statement to a new level and picked a conspicuous time for their big announcement.

Smack in the middle of Game 4 of the World Series, Boras ended months of speculation and said A-Rod is opting out of the final three seasons of his contract with the New York Yankees.

Oh, and Boras let the Yankees know by leaving a voice mail for general manager Brian Cashman.

"Kind of strange timing," Red Sox president Larry Lucchino said after Boston completed its sweep of Colorado.

Red Sox fans sure took notice fast. After their team won the title for the second time in four seasons, they stood behind the visitors' dugout at Coors Field and chanted: "Don't sign A-Rod!"

In a decision that likely ends four tumultuous and unfulfilling seasons with the Yankees, Rodriguez forfeited $72 million he was owed over the final three seasons of his record $252 million, 10-year deal, which he signed with Texas before the 2001 season. The Yankees lose $21.3 million in remaining payments from the Rangers, a subsidy agreed to at the time of his 2004 trade.

Sorry, if I am any team that has the funds to sign this guy, I'd think long and very, very hard before doing so. This man wants the attention and the clubhouse to himself -- is he worth it? He's damn good, but is he worth the trouble?

To Red Sox Nation, if you sign this guy, you all can definitively say now that you are the Yankees.

I would not blame New York for not jumping after him (assuming they stick to their guns), the move reeked of selfishness. There are not too many times I'd agree with the Steinbrenners, but on this one, I do. The Yankees did not win a World Series with him, they can sure win one without him.

Joe Girardi To Be Named Manager of the Yankees...

Joe Girardi

It looks like the Yankees will name Joe Girardi the manager of the Yankees rather than the favored Don Mattingly. It may cause many to wonder what will happen to Mattingly, as it seems he will lose his dream job.

From the New York Daily News: The Yankees will reportedly offer Joe Girardi the manager's job vacated by Joe Torre. An official announcement is expected as early as Monday afternoon.

Club sources have insisted throughout the process that it has been a close call among Girardi, Don Mattingly and Tony Pena, but the deciding factors seem to have been the former Yankee catcher's analytical approach, experience with handling a pitching staff and the job the 43-year-old Girardi did managing the Florida Marlins in 2006.

Mattingly, while one of the most popular Yankees of all-time inside and outside the locker room, is a favorite of George Steinbrenner, but lacked the experience Cashman preferred.

"As much as Cash likes and respects Donnie, you have to wonder if he would trust his own future with a guy with no track record," a Yankees insider told the News Sunday.

(Photo From Yahoo Sports...)

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Boston Takes Game Three, 10-5; One Win Away From It All...

Well, Game Three looked competitive for a while; however, it ended with a similar result – a resounding Red Sox win.

The Boston Red Sox whooped up on the Colorado Rockies, 10-5, thanks to big hits by rookie Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedoria. Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched a great game, and at least in the post-season has pitched fairly well (I’m not if it still justifies his contract), but he looked good in Game Three.

In spite of the Rockies making it a game during the sixth and seventh innings thanks to an ineffective bullpen, the two-headed combo of Okajima and Papelbon saved the day, and the Boston bats added more insult to injury with an eighth inning attack.

Josh Fogg was seemingly no match for the Boston offense, and it seems to be in this series that the NL is just much weaker than the AL, and Colorado’s performance in the World Series just flat out indicates that.

Overall, this World Series has been fairly boring and the games go on way too long, plus start too late.

The Rockies have great players; however, it seems the Red Sox are just beyond meticulous, know what to do break down teams and just simply execute.

Meanwhile, Colorado obviously must win four straight games and by the way they have looked, I don’t see it happening.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Alex Rodriguez; The Rich Keep Getting Richer...

Picture 210

This is sick, and I don't care if it is Alex Rodriguez or not. No player in baseball is WORTH 30 million per year; however, it looks like A-Rod might cross that plateau.

The New York Yankees have asked to meet with third baseman Alex Rodriguez , and if and when they get that meeting, league sources indicate the team is prepared to make him an offer that will exceed, in average salary, the $27 million per year that he is scheduled to make over the next three seasons -- and A-Rod would be in line to set yet another salary benchmark.

The offer could be for something in the range of five years -- beyond the three years Rodriguez is already under contract for, from 2008-10 -- and perhaps $30 million a year. The highest per-workday salary earned to date is the $28 million Roger Clemens received, in prorated salary, for a little less than four months of work this season.

If the Yankees' extension offer is for something in the range of $150 million, over five years, then Rodriguez would be owed about $230 million over the next eight seasons.

It is unclear if the Yankees will get the meeting with the All-Star third baseman that they've requested. Rodriguez, 32, must inform the Yankees within 10 days of the conclusion of the World Series whether he will opt out of the last three years of his current contract. Yankees executives, from Hank Steinbrenner to team president Randy Levine to general manager Brian Cashman, have stated repeatedly that if Rodriguez opts out of the contract, they will not participate in any more bidding for the third baseman. If Rodriguez opts out of his current contract, the Yankees would lose $21.3 million in subsidy from the Texas Rangers , the team that signed Rodriguez to his current $252 million deal after the 2000 season.

I contend no baseball player is worth 30 million plus per year; however, the Yankees have no choice but to sign him.

My Favorite Baseball Photos; Second Edition...


One would think a cop would actually be working; alas, he's a fan much like all of us who read this blog are...


Ichiro Suzuki


The two inductees into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007; Cal Ripken and Tony Gwynn


Mets' Superstar, David Wright in the dugout (RFK Stadium, Washington D.C)



The Orioles Melvin Mora sliding into Angels' catcher, Mike Napoli. After that play Napoli was actually injured and missed some time in action.

Picture 159

I posted this shot in another forum, and people loved it. This was Alex Rodriguez acknowledging a fan before the game action started.

Picture 227

The ferocious swing of Jason Giambi...


Kevin Millar jawing with Yankee fans...



Brian Roberts laughing at the whole spectacle...

Millar, His Movations & FOX


Um, anyone think Millar's antics of last weekend may have gotten him a job after his playing career like with FOX? Or maybe the Worldwide Sports Leader, AKA ESPN?

I think that might have been his motivation (aside from his friends and the Red Sox) angle. Millar may be a funny character, but I doubt he's stupid...

It's as much business as it was being a 'fan'

Friday, October 26, 2007

World Series Reflections; Game Two - Red Sox Beat the Rockies, 2-1

Last night, the Boston Red Sox took a 2-0 lead in the 2007 World Series as they beat the Colorado Rockies in a tight pitching matchup, 2-1. Instead of a slug-fest, fans were treated to a pitcher’s duel, supplanted by both Boston’s and Colorado’s strong bullpens.

Curt Schilling, who is making a strong case as being one of the top post-season pitchers of all time, allowed one run in 5 1/3 innings last night and impressive outings by Hideki Okajima (who went 2 1/3 amazing innings with 4 K’s) along with stud closer Jonathan Papelbon, sealed the Rockies’ fate.

Ubaldo Jimenez held his own against the veteran Schilling, as he went a little more than 4 innings and gave up two runs, before being yanked by Clint Hurdle. If there was a bright side to the loss, the Colorado bullpen was excellent, but the offense could not produce anything at all.

It’s critical the Rockies win at home in the next few days, or their series is done. From the looks of it, Boston looks strong and the magic that Colorado had is gone.

Now, they’ll have to fight to win.

Say what you want about Schilling, who looks closer to Greg Maddux now than a fireballer, but his intelligence, grit and guile has got him through this post-season. If he is indeed done with the Red Sox, they’ll be missing an integral part of their championship runs. As long as he can get guys out, I don’t see why he cannot stay in the game longer.

Game three will feature Daisuke Matsuzaka, who came big in the final game of the ALCS versus Josh Fogg on Saturday night.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

My Favorite Baseball Photos; The 2007 All-Star Game, the 30-3 Game, & Cal Ripken's Send-Off


This first photo was taken during the 2007 All-Star Game in San Francisco at AT&T Park. Willie Mays was honored before the game and it was actually a fairly emotional moment for those in attendance, and perhaps a little for myself as I had never seen in him in person. He was escorted by his god-son Barry Bonds on the field and into a vintage pink Chevy as well as gave two leather jackets to both Jose Reyes and Derek Jeter.


I have added a few more photographs into the post, as there's one of he being escorted into the car by Derek Jeter, a long shot of the field, one of him in the Chevy going along the warning track, a lithograph of Willie spread along the field and one of an umpire getting emotional during the ceremony.






Considering where my bud and I were in the stadium, I was happy to have gotten those shots - it was a once in a lifetime thing to have seen.


These group of shots are of the infamous 30-3 game where the Baltimore Orioles lost to the Texas Rangers during the summer. I was in the stands during that game and basically that night it was more or less open seating. Never did I think that game I was going to be witness to history, and keep in mind, the Orioles actually had the lead at one point, 3-0.

I watched every moment of that game from the beginning, to the ugly, bitter, historic end...






The final series of shots are from this summer, in July, as the Orioles celebrated Cal Ripken heading into the Hall of Fame before a game with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. I left work early that day to enjoy the festivities and take it all in. Anyhow, I had seats along the third base line and just snapped away that day, thus here are the best shots from that evening. I didn't go to Cooperstown; however, I felt privileged to have been a part of it.


Here's a vertical long shot of the field and the scoreboard before the game...


Here's a photo of the 2632 banner on the warehouse of B&O Railroad in Camden Yards...


Cal acknowledging and tapping hands with Little Leaguers...


Cal with Mayor Sheila Dixon...


Cal Ripken speaking to the crowd...


Cal throwing out a ball to a lucky fan in the stands...


I'll be doing this throughout the 2007-2008 off-season and beyond. Let me know what you think, and if you have a shot that you like, drop me a line or leave a comment...

The Hits Keep Coming Radio Show - World Series Edition

As we are into the World Series, we chatted about what's happened in the post-season and news around baseball. Here are the topics we chatted about on Wednesday night.

  • World Series Predictions
  • Cleveland's Collapse
  • Joe Torre's Contract Debacle, Who's the Next Yankee Manager?
  • PED's, Paul Byrd and the Mitchell Report
  • Millar and a Live Report from the World Series
Give us a listen, take a whirl, and let me know what you think! We're on Blog Talk radio and MVN every Wednesday night at 7PM EST.

Former Oriole Andy Etchebarren Gone As Manager of the Single-A Ironbirds...

The big news of the day for most Baltimore baseball fans on Wednesday was the team decided to let go of long-time Oriole and Single-A Aberdeen manager, Andy Etchebarren.

From the Sun: The Orioles on Monday fired Single-A Aberdeen manager Andy Etchebarren, who had coached or managed in the organization for the past 15 seasons after a successful playing career with the club.

Etchebarren managed the IronBirds for three seasons, compiling a 102-124 record. Etchebarren, who has managed in the Orioles system at every level, is the fourth minor league coach or manager the Orioles have let go in the past couple of months.


"I'm very disappointed, very hurt," said Etchebarren, who played 11 1/2 of his 15 major league seasons with the Orioles and was a member of four pennant-winning teams. "I signed with the Orioles in 1961 ... and I thought I'd quit as an Oriole, but I guess not. I went to the organizational meetings and everything else and gave my reports. It came as a shock."

Asked whether he was given a reason for his dismissal, Etchebarren said: "Not really."


"I love baseball, I love the Orioles, I love the kids that I had in Aberdeen," Etchebarren said. "There's nothing I didn't enjoy about it. I just have to go forward. It's part of life. God opens and closes doors for you. I just wish he hadn't closed this one."

The hiring front Oneri Fleita and Mike Radcliff, the vice presidents of personnel for the Chicago Cubs and Minnesota Twins, respectively, were being considered for an executive position under Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail.

Well, from what I gather, it looks more like the team wanted to go in a new direction and change it's culture. I don't know as much about Aberdeen as I do the big club, but it would not surprise me if MacPhail wanted to start putting his handprint with the organization from top to bottom, and Etchebarren might have been a casualty of it.

I don't know.

If anyone has any further insight into the Ironbirds, feel free to let me know...

World Series Reflections; Game One - Red Sox Whoop the Rockies, 13-1

I watched some of the World Series last night, and I learned two things.

One, Josh Beckett is well on his way to becoming one of the best post-season pitchers of all time. Two, for what it is worth, the layoff may have affected the Rockies; however, the Red Sox were just so much better, it doesn’t matter.

Unless, you are just waking up, or didn’t know, the Boston Red Sox demolished the Colorado Rockies, the feel good story of October, 13-1. For now, it looks like the magic that Colorado had that enabled them to win 21 of their last 22 games fluttered away as Jeff Francis got lit up for six runs, and then the Rockies’ bullpen just imploded.

Boston scored seven in the fifth and that more than anything led them to victory. It looked like the Sox were getting all the key hits and every play going their way; in hindsight seemed to be the exact opposite Colorado was experiencing.

Folks, in the last four games, Boston has whooped up on any opponent their way, looking more like the Patriots than your run-of-the-mill baseball team.

Again, it goes without saying, Beckett was incredible. From at least portions of the game I saw, his fastball was amazing, and his breaking/curveball was unhittable. For most of the game, he made the Rockies batter look foolish, and they have one of the better offenses in the National League.

The Rockies will send young fireballer Ubaldo Jimenez against grizzled, battle-tested veteran Curt Schilling.

If Schilling looks like he did in Game 6 in the ALCS, as opposed to Game 2, Colorado may have seen their World Series aspirations go up in smoke unless they startle the Sox at home.


If you love baseball and love Taco Bell, you might have a marriage made in food heaven.

Well, Taco Bell is offering a World Series promotion where, if there's a stolen base by either team in the World Series, you can get a free taco.

Ok, here are the details:

If the stolen base occurs in during games 1 or 2, you can get a free taco on Oct. 30.

If a stolen base happend during after games 3 and beyond, you can get a free taco on Nov. 6.

The hours of the giveaway are between 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

So, no - it's not during the lunch break, it's during the non-prime hours of the day -- obviously, when no one takes lunch.

Read the fine print here:

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Powerful Red Sox

It's 12-1 in the fifth inning; boy, you have to wonder if the layoff has killed the Rockies. They look flat, and the pitching staff looks inconsistent.

The Red Sox are just smashing the ball, being patient and earning walks. The Rockies almost look like an overmatched Triple A team right now.


Pedroia and company are just killing the Rox...



Could Rocktober Be Over Already?


The Red Sox are simply kicking the collective asses of the Colorado Rockies, 9-1, and it's only the fifth inning. Needless to say, they must win on Thursday, or the series for the most part will be over and they'll have a huge mountain to climb.

They look nothing like the team that America has seen in the last month or so.

(This is a photo I took earlier this season...)

Millar, & Quick Hits...

Well, I greatly underestimated how upset people are at the whole thing. Again, I am not going to get emotional about Kevin Millar being a cheerleader for the Red Sox during the Baltimore Orioles offseason; however, both he and the Orioles might overlooked how the whole situation would look in the eyes of fans.

I have had readers leave a few comments, and email me about either agreeing with, or some cases, vehemently disagreeing with me.

It's fine, I love discourse. I think this whole affair says a lot about what the fanbase feels towards the team, and as well how the Orioles look in the eyes of many fans.

Simply, the last ten years, the 4th place finishes, the lack of starpower and the Orioles being looked upon as national joke came to a head this week. Now, if Kevin Millar, let's say played for the Houston Astros, no one here would care, and I don't think the Houston fan base would be up in arms.

However, he did with the Orioles and insulted a good portion of Baltimore, a city where a huge portion of the football crowd still harbors a lot of ill will towards the Irsay family for jettisoning the Colts out of the city (which is more than justified.)

In the end, perhaps the Orioles can learn from this and perhaps rebuild the bridge between the team and the fans. I don't know what the future will hold for Millar, but his stature among fans from what I have seen and read online has taken a big hit.

(Hear what Millar had to say on the Dan Patrick Show... Link)

Matt Palmer in a column on the Examiner's website basically thinks Millar went against the fans with his actions in Boston, and perhaps should be traded. I don't know if I so much agree with that; however, I do think the Orioles sorely need an upgrade over Kevin Millar, just for the fact I'd prefer a younger guy with a better bat at first base.

As well, ExamiNation, on the Baltimore Examiner website has a poll and a place where you can leave comments. Considering the amount of debate that has been expounded on the boards, blogs, and websites, this issue has touched at the nerve of Baltimore sports fans.

Bill Ordine thinks the reaction says a lot about the state of baseball in Baltimore.

Check out what Camden Chat, Orioles Hangout, and the other various forums online have to say about Millar...


Meanwhile, Roch Kubatko in his blog spreads some good news for change, this time from the Arizona Fall League where some of the Orioles prospects are playing.

The Spencer Fordin looks at a myriad of topics in his latest mailbag including signing our good young players (Bedard, etc.) to long term deals, the starting pitching, Barry Bonds and Nick Markakis.

Press Box's Craig Heist interviews Leo Mazzone about losing his job and along with his time in Baltimore, as well as gets in a few words with new pitching coach, Rick Kranitz.

Stan Charles opines that things are not as bad as it may seem with the Orioles in terms of drawing talent and personnel -- personally, I beg to differ, as the numbers don't lie. However, he does make several great points in his article and it is very much worth reading.

The World Series Is Upon Us...

The World Series is upon us, and in a little less than 9 or so hours, the games will begin.

We all know the Boston Red Sox will be taking on the Colorado Rockies, and the consensus seems to be that the Red Sox will take the series and Colorado's amazing win streak will come to an end. By now, we know all the characters, and it will be a test for Colorado, with their young team and inexperience, contrasted against Boston's high payroll, superstars, and experience.

I am picking Boston in Six.

The Red Sox just have the edge in pitching, and they have home field advantage (Boston is sure formidable). Even though the Rockies have a lineup that I think may be comparable with Boston's, I am worried about the Rockies' pitching and how their youngsters will hold in such an environment. I think it's critical that Colorado win a game at Fenway and then move it back to Colorado. If they can't do that, they'll have a mountain to climb.

Much has been made of the time off that the Rockies have had; however, I don't think it's that big of a deal.

Then again, I have been completely wrong on my playoff predicitions, so anything can happen.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Rudy Giuliani; Rooting For the Red Sox?

And you all thought Kevin Millar was bad -- get of load of this: now it looks like the Yankee homer of the century, Republican presidental candidate, Rudy Giuliani is rooting for Red Sox.


Just the other day he was picking on Hilary Clinton for her sudden Yankee homerism when she grew up in the Chicago area.

Isn't the rule, if you are Yankee fan you don't ever root for the Red Sox and vice versa?

BOSTON (AP) — Sounds like a baseball flip-flop. Rudy Giuliani, a lifelong New York Yankees fan, said Tuesday he's pulling for their most hated rivals, the Boston Red Sox, to win the World Series over the Colorado Rockies.

"I'm rooting for the Red Sox," the Republican presidential contender said in response to a question, sparking applause at the Boston restaurant where he was picking up a local endorsement.

"I'm an American League fan, and I go with the American League team, maybe with the exception of the Mets," he said. "Maybe that would be the one time I wouldn't because I'm loyal to New York."

Giuliani's Yankees lost in the first round of the playoffs, then lost their manager when Giuliani's friend, Joe Torre, refused to accept a pay cut and walked away. Giuliani said the Yankees had "a great season."

The former New York mayor said his declaration of temporary Red Sox loyalty was "not just because I'm here in Massachusetts."

"In Colorado, in the next week or two, you will see, I will have the courage to tell the people of Colorado the same thing, that I am rooting for the Red Sox in the World Series," he said.

Indeed, if Giuliani was pandering, he miscalculated.

In the last presidential election, Colorado went with Republican President Bush, and recent history shows Massachusetts voters would sooner adopt Manhattan clam chowder as the state's official food than vote Republican in 2008.

Of course, just to the north is New Hampshire — home to many Red Sox fans — and the nation's first primary.

Oh the humanity, Rudy how can you? Now Yankee fans all over the nation will be jumping off a cliff...

Rudy, stop your freaking pandering!

The Rockies Ticket Buying Experience; Futile...

Timestamps EST...

5:03pm - No tickets for me.

I'm in Maryland, but I really feel for anyone in Colorado or who is a die-hard Rockies fan who could not get lucky.

World Series tickets for all three games at Coors Field sold out in less than three hours today.
The Rockies announced about 2:45 that all 54,000 tickets were gone.

Some lucky fans emerged with tickets after a slow start at noon today, but most people walked away from their computers frustrated and empty-handed.

"We know many people will be disappointed, and we do feel for them," spokesman Jay Alves said in a news conference.

The Rockies blame an "external and malicious" attack for Monday's ticket sales crash. The club said its Web site dealt with more than 8.5 million hits in 90 minutes, and only 500 tickets were sold.

Denver police and FBI officials said today they have received no complaint or request for investigation regarding the alleged cyber hacking.

"No formal complaint has been filed," said Denver FBI Special Agent Rene Vonder Haar, adding that her agency had yet to receive any information regarding a cyber-attack.

The sale today was slow. But the tickets, which went on sale at noon, finally sold out before 3 p.m.

Anyone who was crazy like me and tried, let me know. If you were successful congrats!


3:55 - I'm about 1700 miles away from Denver, and things are looking bleak for those who want tickets to the World Series out there...

According to the Denver Post:

Tickets to the World Series games in Denver are close to selling out, the Colorado Rockies report.

The only seats left are for the possible Monday game, the third home game.

Rockies spokesman Jay Alves told reporters at Coors Field that sales had increased to about 1,500 per minute, and he anticipated a sell-out for all three games.

"Not everyone who wants to get a ticket is going to get a ticket today," he said. "It's just not possible."

The first attempt to sell tickets was stymied Monday by a "malicious, external attack" on the ticket sales system. The Rockies website took 8.5 million hits in a 90-minute period that began at 10 a.m. Monday and proved too much for the system to handle.

Sigh, it's been bad. I have heard of few people getting through. Were people better off just standing in line? If I were a consumer, I'd be upset; however, life is not fair.

I'm going to look online later and check out third-party, broker prices online...

For those who got tickets in Boston or Denver, congrats! Have an awesome time...

If it's any consolation -- since I have tried for Game 5 tickets, my computer has not lost the connection to the network....


2:30 -

Ok, I am at work and I’m on the Colorado Rockies site hoping to buy tickets to the World Series. Not to say that I’ll go, but if I do, I will.

Anyhow, this whole process is fruitless. I have been dropped from their website 3 times already due to network problems.

Anyone else trying? How is it going? Well, anyone have any luck so far?

This was a completely stupid idea on part of the Rockies organization....

Oriole Fans Are Very Pissed at Kevin Millar

Well, on the blogosphere, the internet and on talk radio, the whole issue of Kevin Millar taking part in the ALCS for the Red Sox seemed to be a bit much to swallow for the vast majority of Baltimore Orioles fans. I can see why fans are upset, but honestly, I think the Orioles have far more to worry about than a player acting as a quasi-cheerleader for another team.

It's gotten so ugly that fans are demanding Millar get released and also are taking shots at Orioles Chief Operating Officer, Andy MacPhail for approving Millar's participation in the ALCS.

Personally, I think it's not a big deal -- we are talking about a guy who has been average with the Orioles for the past several seasons; however, the way I have seen people react, it would be akin to Cal Ripken deciding to sever ties with the Orioles.

(Click here for a previous post with a few videos with Millar at Fenway Park...)

When it is all said and done, his legacy (if he has one), will be with part of the Red Sox, and Baltimore would serve as a stop in the final legs of his career.

I know we would like to think athletes care as much for the team they play for as we ardently do; alas, some do, but the majority don't. A lot of the players look at sports as a business, and I am not saying Millar does or does not; however, at face value, most athletes do not swear loyalty to a region, unless they have truly fallen in love with the area or have roots there.

I guess this incident says a lot about us as sports fans, as rather than about athletes.

Maybe I don't care as much because for me, sports are more or less a diversion or entertainment rather than something vital in my life.


Jeff Zrebiec in today's Baltimore Sun
reports on the whole incident and gets a few words from Millar, fans, and team officials. Really, again, I don't think is as big of a deal as it should be, but it shows that fans care. I right now don't feel too bad for Millar, but I'm sure he's very shocked at the reaction his activities up in Boston are causing in this part of the world.

David Steele thinks the fans should not be upset at Millar, an Baltimore Examiner sports blog, Tony's Timeout gives their take on the situation.

Meanwhile, Roch Kubatko reports in his blog
that Oriole manager Dave Trembley has given a "no comment" to the situation -- interesting. Either Dave is very pissed at the news and at Millar, decided it was useless commenting, or was told not to.

Sean Welsh of the Examiner gives us more insight in to incident, how it came about, and insight from Kevin Millar.

Glenn Clark and Mark Suchy from the WNST blogs are insulted that Millar acted as a quasi-cheerleader for the Red Sox.


Well, it looks like B.J. Surhoff is not going to be part of the Orioles' coaching staff, as according to the Baltimore Sun: "The Orioles offered a coaching position to B.J. Surhoff, but the former player declined, saying he isn't able to commit fully at this point. Surhoff might still work with the club during spring training."

Monday, October 22, 2007

Audience Upsets Bill Maher: He Gives An Audience Member a Swift Kick In the Ass...

You have to go to see this to believe, but I'll let the video speak for itself...

Colorado Rockies Fans Are Screwed For Now...


"Rocktober" may have come to a halt in Denver at the moment. For those waiting for tickets and the opportunity to snatch them online, eh, you're screwed for now.

From the Washington Post:

DENVER -- The Colorado Rockies suspended World Series ticket sales Monday after overwhelming demand crashed their computer system.

"Right now we're shutting the system down," club spokesman Jay Alves announced outside Coors Field, drawing boos from fans. "We expect to be online at some point."

"We're as frustrated and disappointed as they are," Alves said.

Alves had said last week that the Rockies were prepared for any computer problems.

On Monday, there were 8.5 million attempts to connect with the computers in the first 90 minutes after sales started, he said, and only several hundred tickets had been sold before the system had to be shut down.

The Rockies put as many as 60,000 tickets up for sale online only, and team officials said their computers were ready to handle the expected crush. But two hours after tickets went on sale, many fans reported they could not get access to the ticket-sales Web site.

Officials with the Rockies and Major League Baseball did not immediately return calls.

KCNC-TV in Denver reported that the company that runs the ticket-sales computers, Paciolan, Inc. had an unspecified problem. Paciolan officials did not immediately return a call to The Associated Press.

About 20 people lined up in near-freezing temperatures outside the Denver Public Library before it opened in hopes of using public-access computers to score tickets.

"If you can't get tickets here, you're going to have to pay $200, $300 above face value," said Clayton McLeod, a 26-year-old heavy-machine operator who took the day off to try to get seats.

Yikes. That sucks! Let's hope for the sake of the fans out there, the ticketing system comes back online and well-meaning fans (note: NOT SCALPERS) get a chance to see their team live out a dream...

Oriole Fans Pissed at Kevin Millar...


Kevin, I really didn't care what you did last weekend; but boy, you have pissed off a lot of people who root for the Orioles. Francona's response was priceless, although the vats majority of fans on the net who root for Baltimore are none too pleased.

For those who missed it, or have no idea what has been chatted about - here we go. I had not seen the coverage from NESN until now, but he seems to be relishing it and he used the word "we" a few times. Hmmm.

Guess his heart still has not really left the Red Sox.

Videos below...

Kevin Millar: In Bad Taste?; What is the Worth of the Orioles?

We, as fans always wants to believe our athletes are loyal to our region and us, not only because of the money and emotional investment put forth, but because sports reinforces regional pride and esteem.

Well, Kevin Millar has put athlete loyalty and the team they play for to the test.

I mentioned the contribution of Millar towards the Red Sox and his TV spot in game six of the ALCS, and he throwing out the first pitch in game seven.

While some agreed with what I posted online yesterday here and on Oriole Magic, if you span the rest of the Oriole blogs, forums and websites, fans are not happy at all with Millar's antics.

By far, the most vocal of fans have been at Orioles Hangout discussing the issue; however, I am far more concerned with what Millar does on the field and in an Oriole uniform than I am with some stuff he does with the Red Sox in the post-season. Millar, I think likes Baltimore, but has no real ties to here, and it is obvious to me, he has a lot of affection towards the Red Sox organization.

On top of it all, according the media, Andy MacPhail approved it, so the Oriole brass must have not made a big deal about it. In the end, it seems like more athletes like where they play and love the income, than showing undying loyalty to an organization.

Someone like Derek Jeter is different from the norm, a lot down deep may feel like Manny Ramirez in terms of their loyalty to their team, fanbase and region.

Again, I may be different, but in the end, as Millar does his job as an Oriole, that's good enough for me. As I have gotten older, I have taken sports for what it is -- entertainment, rather than something that is a faux parable of life.

Roch Kubatko, Bill Ordine, and Camden Chat have more thoughts on Kevin Millar.


Meanwhile, in light of the horrible baseball that has been played by the Orioles for the past decade and the ever declining crowds at Camden Yards -- guess what? The Oriole are making money hand over fist.

That's right.

The Baltimore Sun's Childs Walker reports on the club's financial health, and it's pretty good. Most of the team's value comes from MASN, obviously and a deal by MLB as part of the negotiations to bring the Montreal Expos into Washington.

From the report:

Because of the excellent fiscal health of Major League Baseball, the creation of the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network by Orioles owner Peter Angelos and the league, and the continuing adoration for Camden Yards, the Orioles are worth more than ever before, investment bankers and financial analysts say.

The team is valued at about $400 million, says John A. Moag, president of Moag and Co., a Baltimore-based investment banking firm that specializes in sports transactions. And MASN, which is 90 percent owned by the team, is worth at least another $400 million, he said.

That's a far cry from the $173 million (about $240 million in today's dollars) that Angelos and his partners paid for the Orioles in 1993.

I would not be surprised at all with the assessment. Much of the value seems to be built upon the reputation of Camden Yards, along with the potential of the cable TV network, which the Orioles have almost all the ownership of.

If the Orioles ever became competitive again and could build up the network to the level of NESN or YES, the organization would be in far better condition than it is now and would bring an obvious level of respect back to baseball in the region.

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Papelbon's At It Again: His Irish Jig...

Looks who's dancing again, venerable Red Sox closer, Jonathan Papelbon...

Your ALCS Champions: The Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox beat the Cleveland Indians, 11-2, last night to win the American League pennant. I figured after Cleveland lost Game 5, the doors were opened for a Boston comeback. Despite being down, 3-1, in the series, the Boston bats and clutch pitching from Josh Beckett, Curt Schilling and Daisuke Matsuzaka led them to victory. It doesn't hurt that almost everyone in the lineup sans Coco Crisp came up big the last two days.

The Tribe bats just feel asleep and their 1-2 combo of Sabathia and Carmona fell flat in the ALCS. They seemed to not have been able to get anything started offensively and the struggles of Travis Hafner really hurt the team a lot.

Considering Cleveland's youth, they should have a chance to get into the playoff for many years to come; however, they were beat by a better team and one that's built to win.

Like I said Saturday, the Red Sox are a special team; alas, this is what I said:

I know the Red Sox are seen amongst many to be a warm, cuddly, fun team to watch - which I agree with. However, they are the like the Yankees: a huge financial super-power loaded with super-stars, a park which prints money, and with fanbase which will pay anything to see their team. I’ll say, I rooted for the Sox in 2004, because they had a great storyline, great and charismatic players, along with having the distinction of not having won a World Series in a number of generations.

Then they won it in 2004, and expectations along with the team itself have never been the same. The fans are more rabid than ever, and NESN has helped to transcend the Red Sox from a team to a brand; um, much like the Yankees.

I have nothing against the Red Sox, but I will not be rooting for them in ‘07.

Yes, they have bankable superstars; however, it is remarkable that a city with perhaps no more than 600,000 people has been able to become one of the biggest sports teams in all the land. They spend and sign players to contracts much like the Evil Empire. I’m not going to call Boston the Evil Empire II, but they are not the same warm and cuddly team from 2004.

I'm sticking with what I said; I'm not hating, but I'm not going to consider the Red Sox some sort of underdogs.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Kevin Millar and the Red Sox...

For all the Oriole fans out there, I am opening up the floor -- does anyone have a problem Kevin Millar appearing on Fox rooting and rallying on the Red Sox in a sport before Game Six? Furthermore, does anyone have a problem with him appearing before Game Seven throwing out the first pitch when he is a current Oriole?

Me, I don't have a problem; however, some might. I think it's a good thing that the Red Sox organization have the doors wide open for Kevin (to an extent) and there seems to be no bitterness on his part. Considering his significance in Red Sox history in the past decade, I guess it is somewhat appropriate.

The floor is yours.

Paul Byrd Tries to Explain Himself...

Everyone has an excuse for everything, and now Paul Byrd is trying to explain his connection to HGH.

According to Fox Sports, he's denied any wrong doing.

Ken Rosenthal writes: Yes, Indians right-hander Paul Byrd admits to taking human-growth hormone. In his upcoming book, "The Free Byrd Project," he even writes about resisting the temptation to use an increased dosage with the hope of throwing harder.

Byrd says he never hid his use of HGH because it was prescribed to him under a doctor's care. He paid for the substance with his own credit card. At one point, he had it sent in his name to the Braves' spring-training facility in Kissimmee, Fla.

Byrd says he no longer takes HGH and has not taken it this season.

Like I assumed, he was taking it to heal; however, you have to question the ethics of what he did within sport. Sure, he might have had problems, but did why did you use it when the drugs have correlated very much with your career.

Well, I have a problem with Byrd in the next passage, I really do not like him mixing religion with his HGH use. Did you use it knowing it would help with your sleep disorder, or did you use it to make you a better pitcher. Honestly, when did you use it, when did you stop?

Byrd, a devout Christian, says he has had difficulty sleeping his entire life, and that his mother briefly put him on Ritalin when he was a young boy. In his book, he describes the effects of his sleeplessness and how it ultimately led him to a physician that prescribed HGH.

"Even though there were good things like my time with God that came out of my aloneness in the night, the sporadic periods of fatigue and lack of sleep have really bothered me on the baseball field," Byrd writes. "Chronic sore throats, an inability to recover and throw bullpens and times of tiredness have all affected while standing on the mound.

"At the insistence of a close friend, I went and had my hormones checked . . . To my surprise, the doctor told me that I was producing very little growth hormone and prescribed a dosage to help me out. I didn't like sticking a needle in my inner thigh each night but I sure did enjoy the sleep that occurred afterwards. My life changed during that time and I was able to work out more, experience less fatigue and recover quicker.

"Like the other temptations that I've mentioned in this book, I had a new one to deal with one night when I stuck that needle in the hormone-filled bottle. I wondered if I doubled my prescribed dose, whether or not I would throw harder and have a better and possibly longer career. After all, I had a prescription.

"Some strange silent voices ran across my brain and had conversations with me as I pulled back the syringe. I remember having thoughts that doing better on the field could mean more money for my family, my charities and even supporting churches. Then I prayed and realized that God was in control of my life and he wouldn't want me making money through cheating the system.

Interesting. Paul, you have a lot of questions to answer.

Hank Steinbrenner: The Apple Does Not Fall Far from the Tree...

Well, Hank Steinbrenner has the family DNA and it's not too hard to see that apple does not fall far from the tree.

He's opened his mouth again, as he felt a tad disrespected by the words of Joe Torre last week as to why he felt the Yankees.

You don't think Hank has ego, you have to see what he says beloe.

From ESPN: Hank Steinbrenner, who has begun to take control over the New York Yankees with brother Hal from their fiery father George, shot back at former manager Joe Torre's comment about the team's contract offer being an "insult."

"Where was Joe's career in '95 when my dad hired him?" Hank Steinbrenner told The New York Post. "My dad was crucified for hiring him.

"Let's not forget what my dad did in giving him that opportunity -- and the great team he was handed," Steinbrenner told the paper.

I'm not going to argue with him there; however, the numbers don't lie, Joe was a winner and that helped him become an icon in New York. In the end, whether he might have got the credit because of his skill as a manager, or he had a world of talent on his teams, he walked out a winner.

Hank Steinbrenner believed the Yankees' offer was fair and that Torre needed to accept some of the blame for the team's zero championships since 2000.

"You can't take credit for success when you're going good, and then not take at least some of the blame when things change," Steinbrenner told the paper. "I'm sorry he feels insulted, but that was not the intent."

Hank Steinbrenner said he was hoping Torre would agree to manage the Yankees for a 13th season.

"I sincerely wanted Joe to accept that offer," said Steinbrenner. "We all wanted him to accept it, probably me more than anybody else."

"You don't make an offer bluffing. What if he says yes?" he added. "I was hoping he'd say yes."

Hank, no; you and the Yankee brass lowballed him in the negotiations. Honestly, the man has led the team to 12 playoffs and the "Yankee mission" statement is a tad unrealistic. Your Yankee teams in did not lose in spite of Joe Torre, you all lost because you had aging players, a lack of pitching, poor chemistry, and most of the teams who squared off against the organization at the point of time were better.

The Yankees became likable because of Torre, and now, the antics of the Yankee brass are making a proud and storied organization to into a joke.

Paul Byrd and HGH; Perspective & Our Heroes Are Not What We Think They Are

In sports, entertainment or any walk of life, we all like, appreciate and honor a great story. However, as well, things are not as they seem.

Honored and praised for his performance in the playoffs, Cleveland starter Paul Byrd impressed fans and experts alike with his clutch performances during the ALDS and ALCS.

Now, everything has lost it's luster. We don't know if the allegations are, or if he he was used in a while, but this morning it was revealed that Indian pitcher Paul Byrd bought some HGH in 2005.

Paul Byrd, who pitched the Cleveland Indians to the brink of the World Series with a victory in Game 4 of the ALCS on Tuesday, reportedly admitted to taking human growth hormone under a doctor's care.

"I have not taken any hormone apart from a doctor's care and supervision," Byrd told "The Indians, my coaches and MLB have known that I have had a pituitary gland issue for some time and have assisted me in getting blood tests in different states. I am currently working with an endocrinologist and will have another MRI on my head after the season to make sure that the tumor hasn't grown."

A report Sunday in The San Francisco Chronicle said Byrd bought nearly $25,000 worth of human growth hormone and syringes. According to, Byrd did not dispute that account.

Needless to say, the news puts a damper on the whole run by the Indians. At this point, I'd say it could be possible anyone could have bought PED's now. I'm not shocked, but considering Paul Byrd's statements on being a Christian, his anti-steroid statements, and his good guy image (I have talked a bit with him in Baltimore one night), it was a little surprising, but I am not shocked by anything I hear. People often say one thing and do another all the time.

At this point, I am considering him guilty in light of the American legal procedure, as in this case, it there's smoke, there's fire.

Maybe he did it to improve and come back from injuries or healing. I'd suspect he'd wanted to keep his spot in the sport and as well for financial benefit.

Good people sometimes do stupid things; alas, temptation is hard to turn down sometimes.

In the end, I'm just curious as to why the news of Paul Byrd has been divulged now?

Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Red Sox Are the Yankees...

As I am awake right now very early Sunday morning, I am just getting over the Red Sox & Indians will play for all the marbles later on tonight after the Tribe blew a 3-1 commanding lead.

I know the Red Sox are seen amongst many to be a warm, cuddly, fun team to watch - which I agree with. However, they are the like the Yankees: a huge financial super-power loaded with super-stars, a park which prints money, and with fanbase which will pay anything to see their team. I'll say, I rooted for the Sox in 2004, because they had a great storyline, great and charismatic players, along with having the distinction of not having won a World Series in a number of generations.

Then they won it in 2004, and expectations along with the team itself have never been the same. The fans are more rabid than ever, and NESN has helped to transcend the Red Sox from a team to a brand; um, much like the Yankees.

I have nothing against the Red Sox, but I will not be rooting for them in '07.

Yes, they have bankable superstars; however, it is remarkable that a city with perhaps no more than 600,000 people has been able to become one of the biggest sports teams in all the land. They spend and sign players to contracts much like the Evil Empire. I'm not going to call Boston the Evil Empire II, but they are not the same warm and cuddly team from 2004.

Anyone disagree with me? The floor is yours...

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Papelbon Jigs, Youkilis Channels the 80's...

Ok, I am a little late and just found this, but I found this video that made me said "My God".

There's nothing like a seeing a grown men doing the 'jig' and 'the running man'.

Anyhow, during the night when the Red Sox clinched the AL East, Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon decided to do the "jig" in celebration, hmm, in his underwear and in his glory; meanwhile, Kevin Youkilis enjoyed doing the running man...

Good lord.

Joe Torre; Fun Stuff and Commericals from Youtube...

I did something unusual today -- I took off blogging for much of Saturday. I went out and enjoyed the day, ran some errands, and spent a lot of the day talking to family and special people in my life.

Well, there was not any baseball last night; however, the huge talk of sporting world was Joe Torre turning down a one year contract from the New York Yankees to manage. As we all know, the role of the Yankees in the whole situation has been almost universally condemned in the media, blogs and on television.

People may argue that Torre definitely had a dearth of talent with his World Series winning teams and his 12 straight playoff appearances; however, he became extremely adept at handling the New York media and importantly, George Steinbrenner.

In the end, managers are hired to be fired; alas, Joe Torre because of he want through has joined a special pantheon of sports icons whose success, but more telling, their influence on the game and the respect of their peers is unparalleled.


I may not be a Minnesota Twins' fan; however, they make some of the more ingenious commercials out there promoting their team. The spot above features Johan Santana being split in half, and Michael Cuddyer and Juan Rincon as magicians who seemingly have no clue as to what to do.

The "Mouth of the North", Curt Schilling appears in a nice little Dunkin Donuts commercial and tries to speak like a Bostonian, but does not do too well.

A spot from the Seattle Mariners featuring Raul Ibanez and Ichiro Suzuki.

A spot from the Phillies, you'll have to watch - I'm not going to describe it. If you're a man over 35 or so, you'll know what I'm talking about.

Well, some stuff in the past need to stay there -- like this spot. This spot features guys from the Washington Redskins and Baltimore Orioles singing and dancing to an original song about McDonald's breakfast sandwiches. Yikes.

Finally, we all have probably seen this, but here's a spot from Pepsi that features Joe Mauer and Johnny Damon. Good stuff.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Excerpt of the Joe Torre Press Conference: What I Think Of His Body Language...

Not to say that I am the best at analyzing body language or anything, but Joe Torre despite trying to stay on the high road and say the right things is absolutely bitter. I would say he's very steamed at what went on and the disrespect that was shown.

I wonder if he will forgive and forget; however, I do not think it will be that simple considering the way he was treated. He more less said what he felt about the situation, but this is a hurt deeper than we can imagine. It is nice he took the job and said no thanks to the Yankee brass, but seeing him, it was really something would he be reluctant to give up unless it was not on his terms.

Joe Torre; Anger Rising About What the Yankees Did...

There are a lot of people not happy with Joe Torre more or less being shafted in the contract talks yesterday in Florida in returning to the Yankees.

Although the Red Sox and Indians are still battling in the ALCS, and the success of the Rockies in Denver is taking that area by storm, almost all the baseball related chatter yesterday was about the Yankees.

Boy, the timing of their announcements are impeccable.

My bud, Jason, who also runs a baseball blog, My Baseball Bias, says what I feel better than I could put into words. It also helps, he's a huge Yankee fan...

12 Years as the Manager of the New York Yankees - 12 Playoff Berths

4 World Series Championships

6 American League Pennants

10 AL East Division Pennants

The Yankees organization shot themselves in the foot today. Sure, they’ll be just fine in the long-run because of their rather rich economic situation, but upper management went out and embarrassed the franchise today.

Why is this a sad day to be a Yankee fan? To put it bluntly, they treated one of their own like he s**t .

How do you suddenly ask a man who has led you to the playoffs in every year of his tenure to: 1. take a pay cut and 2. agree to an “incentives based contract”? That decision by all who were involved, Yankee President Randy Levine, GM Brian Cashman, Owners Hal, Hank and George Steinbrenner, COO Lonn Trost and the rest of the organization is a total slap in the face to Joe Torre.

The Yankees always talk about how classy of an organization they are, how they always try to do the right thing. Well, today they failed miserably. Egg is on all of your faces. You can’t in your right mind think that Joe Torre needs a financial motivation to manage the New York Yankees into the playoffs. And you can’t tell me that by offering him only a one year contract is nothing less than being disrespectful.

And if you really wanted him back, why not negotiate? Why have him fly all the way down to Florida with only one option on the table?

Because you never wanted him back in the first place. If you knew this, you should have fired him right after the ALDS loss to the Cleveland Indians. As an organization, you “suits” couldn’t have played this any worse. You all needed three days of meetings to decide that you were going to totally humiliate a person by offering him a contract that you knew he would reject?

Gimme a break.


Let me just end with this:

just end with this:

A man who leads a team to the playoffs after a 21-29 start to the season is a man that deserves respect.

Good luck to the next manager of my beloved Yankees, I hope management doesn’t kick you in the ass when you take the job.

Could not have said it any better myself.

From the Mouth of Joe Torre; The Press Conference

Simply, from mouth of Joe Torre, stated why he did not return. The press conference was just held a few minutes ago...

His words and thoughts:

Joe Torre told his side of the story Friday, saying the incentives in the New York Yankees' contract offer were an "insult."

"I just felt the contract offer, the terms of the contract, were probably the thing I had the toughest time with -- the one year for one thing, the incentives for another thing," Torre said of his reasons for declining the offer. "I've been there 12 years and I didn't think motivation was needed."

"We knew exactly what was expected here," he said, "So, I just didn't think it was the right thing for me, I just didn't think it was the right thing for my players."


Asked if he would return if the team reconsidered, Torre said he wasn't expecting that to happen. He said committment, not money, was the biggest factor.

"I like to work with people -- there's a certain trust that has to be earned and forged in order to have the commitment to follow," Torre said. "I can't answer that question because I don't anticipate it happening. If someone wanted me to manage here, I'd be managing here."

"Yes it was a very generous offer," he added, "but it wasn't the type of commitment that 'we're trying to do something together,' as opposed to 'let me see what you can do for me.'"

I agree with Torre on this one, sorry.

You tell the guy he's going to be fired if he loses, and yet offer him a contract more than two weeks later getting paid substantially less than he was previously for the same job.

After all he's done for the Yankee organization, I'd give him no choice but to leave.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Joe Torre No Longer Manager of the Yankees...

Wow. I just got home and was busy in the afternoon; I just learned that Joe Torre rejected a one year contract from the Yankees. Why the hell the Yankee brass would wait ten days to decide on the fate of manager who helped the organization to 12 straight division championships, behooves me.

You tell the guy he's going to be fired if he loses, and yet offer him a contract more than two weeks later getting paid substantially less than he was previously for the same job.

We have no idea what was said, but if I were in Mr. Torre's shoes, I'd be disrespected.

I'm not even a Yankee fan and I'm disgusted.

If this decision leads to the days of the "Bronx Zoo" of the 70's and 80's, the club deserves it.

The Words of Manny Ramirez with “Mr. October”, Reggie Jackson Mixed In…

Manny Ramirez's words have angered many fans in general, those on talk radio and online.

Again, here's what he said yesterday (ESPN Video):

Anyhow, Reggie Jackson put in his two cents on the debate and he'd be a good of source of info considering his exploits in October along with his relationship and influence on his players.

Interesting perspective, but let's keep in mind Manny grew up in New York City and has been playing professional baseball for nearly two decades now.

I guess Manny was taken out of context; however, he said what he said in English, and I know he understands it.

Jackson's final line raises a great point, and he's absolutely right.

Playoff Reflections, Day Seventeen; Are the Red Sox Done, Rockotber Comes To A Halt For Now…

Could it be curtains for the Red Sox tonight, as they face the Indians in game five of the American League Championship Series?

Well, Boston ace Josh Beckett faces the large, and in charge, C.C. Sabathia tonight at Jacobs Field in Cleveland.

Now, I predicted the Red Sox to takes the series; however, my prediction is not coming to fruition. The Sox have been battling with lack of clutch hitting, poor starting pitching (aside from Beckett) and a bullpen that was gone through the ringer.

According to some reports now, Josh Beckett is battling back issues, but should be able to make the start. Meanwhile, C.C. Sabathia has been ineffective, as he now has an ERA over 10 in the playoffs.

What will happen? We shall see? I think Boston may win tonight, but it is uncertain if they can take the series.

If Boston makes it to a game six or even seven, will they be able to rely on Curt Schilling and Daisuke Matsuzaka? Can Dustin Pedroia, Kevin Youlikis, and the bottom of the order deliver? On the other hand, Cleveland is doing everything right and looks primed to take the series.

We shall see.


Well, on the NL side, will the layoff affect the Colorado Rockies? Right now, the Rockies still have an additional week to keep their focus and ready for the World Series.

From what has been said, it looks like they will stay in Denver and hold their workouts there. However, you've got think how the layoff will come into play considering their amazing hot streak.

Personally, I think it may not have the much of affect, but it is a concern when a team with a much momentum as the Rockies have to take time off. If you remember, in 2006, the Tigers had about a week off in between the NLCS and World Series; however, they just looked awful (especially, the pitchers) and that could have played a big role in their loss to the St. Louis Cardinals.

Stay tuned.

O's Hire Kranitz as New Pitching Coach; Quick Hits

Well, the Orioles have replaced their pitching coach relatively quickly, as Leo Mazzone was fired.

From the The Orioles today announced the hiring of Rick Kranitz as pitching coach for the 2008 season.

Kranitz spent the past two seasons as pitching coach for the Florida Marlins after 22 years as a coach and instructor in the Chicago Cubs organization. He declined an offer to remain as Marlins' pitching coach for 2008 in order to pursue other opportunities.

Orioles Manager Dave Trembley managed in the Cubs farm system from 1994-2002 while Kranitz was a coach and instructor for the Cubs.

More or less, Trembley wanted someone who was comfortable in his system, and who he worked with. I am going to assume that he wanted Kranitz all along and Leo was going to be given his walking papers anyway.

I think the Orioles wanted someone who could work well with the young pitching and perhaps make a tangible contribution to the team. At this point, if there's someone who can come in and make things better, we, as fans would be grateful.

Good luck, Mr. Kranitz.


The Baltimore Sun has more on the Kranitz hire, and Peter Schmuck thinks he's a good fit for the Orioles. I have no idea what he's done in the past, aside from looking at Florida's success, but it looks like he's got great rapport with Trembley and has had success with working with young pitching.

There's more on the development from the Baltimore Examiner, Washington Post & the

As well, beat writer Spencer Fordin has a new mailbag on the

Childs Walker of the Sun reports that the Maryland Board of Public Works approved yesterday a settlement between the Orioles and the Maryland Stadium Authority that will allow the replacement of the board to commence; however, in the piece it notes that it will be hard to do considering the amount of time for the work to be done before the start of the next season.

The Baltimore Examiner has more on the story.

Meanwhile, Cal Ripken Jr., who was named two months ago a special envoy for the State Department, will go to China at the end of this month to talk baseball with coaches from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Idiot File: Manny Ramirez: Dumb Ass

I have never inducted someone into the Idiot File twice within a span of an hour; alas, let's welcome another inductee to join Mr. Don Imus.

Manny Ramirez.

Now, if someone was paying me um, roughly 1000 times what the average American makes, I'd sure have damn pride in my job and my employers. Hell, if I played in a city like Boston where the fans are loyal, sell out the park I play conduct business in, I'd be happy, or at least fake it.

Well, Mr. Ramirez has lost complete common sense and I wonder now does he have a mental illness. I harked to my friend Aaron that Manny would be the biggest flake in sports if he didn't rake with his bat, and I stood by it in light of his talent.

Now, I think I am more than right when he asked about possibly being out of the World Series hunt if they lose Thursday night. Folks, if I were a Sox fan, I'd appalled.

Folks, here's the wit and prose of Manny for you:

From MSNBC: On a workout day, Manny Ramirez gave Boston fans a real reason to get worked up.

With the Red Sox just one loss from elimination, the star slugger was asked about Game 5 of the AL championship series against Cleveland.

“Why should we panic?” he said Wednesday in a rare clubhouse interview. “We’ve got a great team.”

And then, this: “It doesn’t happen, so who cares? There’s always next year. It’s not like it’s the end of the world.”

He's so freaking dumb. Do you really think a Red Sox fan would buy that reasoning? Do you think the Red Sox brass after spending $160 million on a team to get into the World Series would find that funny?

Is he high, freaking dumb, or just doesn't care. Man, I'm in bewilderment as to why any professional athlete would open his mouth up and say that.

If I hear from any Red Sox that says it's, "Manny Being Manny", I question whether you're an actual fan and if you care who wear the team's uniform.

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