GAME 124: There is no heart, passion, or even a pulse evident in this Yankee team. Back in the day, The Boss and Billy would have never let it get to this point, but that was a different era. Right now, The Stadium seems lifeless, the team seems dispassionate, and football season in New York looks like it won’t have to wait until even September. Here’s the box score and recap.
“We’ve got to find a way to score more than two runs,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. “It’s hard to win when you only score two runs. Our pitching has been pretty good, but that’s a tall task.”
Who or Where Is The Heart and Soul of This Team?
No knock on The Captain here. Derek Jeter has never been, nor needed to be, a vocal, in-your-face team leader. He grew into that role with quiet class, respect for the game and organization, and primarily with a talent and work ethic that resulted in him reaching heights outrageous on the field. Leading by example.
My question is where is the fire? Jorge ‘The Enforcer’ Posada is dearly missed on numerous levels, and from what we can tell his presence in the clubhouse has not been replaced. Ditto for Paul O’Neill. And Tino albeit on a more subdued level. And not to mention Mariano Rivera’s quiet yet powerful leadership. During ‘the run’, these guys set both the tone and the bar. Part of Joe Torre’s deft managing approach was to let the vets run the clubhouse — and he was fortunate to have such a collection.
Also, no knock on Joe Girardi. Between this season and last, Joe has played the hand he’s been dealt beyond expectation. Trouble is, he does not have the clubhouse his predecessor enjoyed.
FREE AGENT RUMBLINGS: MLB Trade Rumors has the latest on Rusney Castillo sweepstakes, where the Yanks have reportedly dropped out of the list of top contenders.
Today in Yankees Baseball History
A Happy 70th Birthday to Graig Nettles!
MEMORY LANE: On August 20, 2010, the Yankees traded a player to be named later to the Cleveland Indians for Austin Kearns (who turned out to be Zach McAllister) to the Cleveland Indians.
On August 20, 1964, on the New York team bus following a 5-0 White Sox win, Phil Linz begins to play Mary Had a Little Lamb on his harmonica. Manager Yogi Berra orders Linz to stop, then slaps the instrument out of his hands when he continues playing. The incident is reported as indicating dissension on the club and Berra’s lack of control, as well as the level of Linz’s humor. Here’s some historical evidence: a photo of a newspaper report, another partial photo of the same report, and another quick read. And more one piece from Harvey Frommer‘s vault.
On this date in 1938, Lou Gehrig hits his last grand slam, the 23rd of his career, and still the record. It comes off Buck Ross in an 11-3 victory over the A’s.
(Source: Today In Baseball History.com)