Monday, May 21, 2007

Hardball Notes

  • Jason Giambi is an idiot. One can applaud his "desire to come clean", if that's what you want to call it, but to me it seemed like the finger-wagging of the teacher's pet who thinks he's gotten away with one. Surprise, surprise, he hasn't. Let's run through the timeline here - Jason apparently does PEDs, Jason signs a huge contract that's suspiciously devoid of PED language, Jason gets mysteriously sick, Jason starts hitting better but not as well as he did, Jason is beloved because he sorta kinda admitted he might have done something he ought not to have. Follow that with "Jason thinks he can get away with the moral high ground" and "Jason doesn't look like he's going to give back any of the money," and you can see why I'm at least mildly suspicious of his motives. Of course, the Yankees are now looking to sever his contract for that non-admission of steroid use, in which case he'll have only gotten away with an $80M fast one, and not a $123M fast one.
  • Sunday night, Joe Morgan confidently announced that the reason the Yankees aren't scoring runs is because Gary Sheffield is in Detroit. With apologies to the fine gents at FireJoeMorgan, No. The reason the Yankees aren't scoring runs is that Johnny Damon is hitting like Bob Zupcic and Bobby Abreu is hitting like Zupcic's anemic little sister. The middle of the Yankee's lineup isn't suffering. It's the top of the order that's not extending at-bats or getting on base, and without that, you face better pitchers longer and you don't score runs. Gary Sheffield can't drive in Abreu and his .246 BA if Bobby's butt is on the bench after another weak grounder to third.
  • Incidentally, I wonder how the WEEI crowd is feeling about all those calls for Theo Epstein's head when he refused to break the bank for Damon. Working in sports talk radio means never having to say you're sorry.
  • Personally, I'm just waiting for Ozzie Guillen to call in to Dr. Laura. That, I would pay good money to listen to.
  • Thousands of little kids are going to do serious injury to their rib cages trying to imitate Tim Lincecum's pitching motion. Either that, or they're going to add a pop, lock, and robot to their followthrough, because his motion is the closest thing to breakdancing on the mound that I've seen.
  • Who the heck is Greg Dobbs, and why is he starting at first base for the Phillies? Never mind that, the answer is "because the alternative is Wes Helms".
  • To future generations, 2007 will go down as "the season of the overprivileged aging veteran". Clemens gets to do whatever it is he's doing - nobody seems able to agree on that, though Jayson Stark's piece on the contract negotiations was a bit more pollyannaish than I'm used to reading from him. Any attempt to spin that contract as "not that bad" runs aground on the rock of "$18M for part of a season".
  • Yes, Gil Meche is pitching well so far. However, there's plenty of time left for him to turn back into, well, Gil Meche.
  • Funny how the guy keeping the Dodgers' rotation afloat was the one whom Paul DePodesta traded for in a deal that the local media pilloried. Chirp, say the crickets. Chirp, chirp.
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