Posted at 10:33 AM on May 2, 2005
by David Zingler
Even with their gold plated, diamond studded walkers, the upscale retirement community known as the New York Yankees have been slow out of the gate this season. With their loss to Toronto on Sunday, George�s Geriatrics stand at 10-15 � worse than the Tigers, Brewers, and Reds. For some reason I strongly doubt that Mr. Steinbrenner takes much solace in the fact that his $200 million team is still two games ahead of Tampa Bay in the standings.
While conventional logic says that it is only a matter of time before the Yanks get hot and begin their annual steam rolling of the AL East, I am here today to tell you that it won�t happen. Sure, the Evil Empire will not play .400 baseball all season and will finish with a winning record, but when the playoffs begin in October, the Yankees won�t be participating.
The Yankee dynasty began a decade ago with a core of homegrown players like Derek Jeter, Bernie Williams, Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera. The organization complemented that group with veterans Paul O'Neill, Tino Martinez, and eventually Chuck Knoblauch � all acquired through trades. Sure, there were important free agent signings like David Cone, Scott Brosius and David Wells � all solid, professional players, but not superstars with big price tags.
Jeter, Williams, Posada and Rivera are still around, but are all on the wrong side of 30, while the rest of the team is comprised of mostly over-the-hill, overpaid mercenaries. Meanwhile, their badly neglected farm system is completely dried up. This is a team that badly needs an infusion of youth, but King George doesn't have the patience or vision to allow that to happen.
Since losing to Arizona in the 2001 Fall Classic, the Bronx Bombers have been bounced by the Angels in a four game ALDS, out-hustled by the Marlins in a six-game World Series defeat (including a shutout loss in Game 6 at Yankee Stadium) and, of course, blown a 3-0 lead to the Red Sox in the ALCS. Instead of learning from their mistakes and looking back at the model they used to win four championships in five years, the organization continues to pillage its' farm system to feed George�s big name fetish. It is because of that philosophy of greed and vanity that the New York Yankees will be making tee times this October.
Corky Miller Update
While I have my crystal ball out, I must also sadly announce that it looks like the Corky Miller era of Twins baseball will be coming to a close very soon. In today�s Star Tribune, manager Ron Gardenhire openly campaigned for the return of Terry Tiffee to the major league roster. That coupled with Joe Mauer�s healthy knee, means time is not on the side of the Cork man.
As much as i love the Yankees (my childhood was spent in New York rooting for the Mets first and the Yanks second) and I have little doubt that the team will pick up some more free agents to help out, I can't help but wonder if they are going to end up in another period of the "lean years" like they were in the 80's and early 90's.
But then, at that time, they weren't spending the money they are now, too.
I love to watch the Yankees struggle. Long live George's suffering.
I'm all for the return of Tiffee. He's a talented fielder and batter. Maybe we should keep Corky and send down LeCroy instead. That's what I call deadweight(and a lot of it). He reminds me of David Ortiz as a Twin. You knew he could hit (see: David Ortiz's Red Sox career), but he never really delivered (see: Twins' Sunday loss to Anaheim).