Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lupica makes sense (Stopped clocks, etc.)

Anytime Mike Lupica ventures outside New York sports, or the sports he takes time for (tennis, golf), he's in trouble. He sounds like a fool when he talks college football (read: when he memorizes the college football talking points his interns prepare for him) and he's an even bigger fool talking about politics (how's that Roger Clemens Presidential pardon working out?).

But set him loose in the five boroughs and he can make some serious sense.

Would the Yankees be better with Roy Halladay? Sure they would. Should they get him?

Different question.

Lupica chimes in:

There are as many rationales for getting Halladay, of course, as there are empty seats at the new Stadium, starting with the most basic rationale of all: They're the Yankees, they're supposed to buy guys like they're one of those European soccer teams, they're supposed to think big. But then they've been thinking big since Piazza's ball ended up in Bernie's glove.

We are constantly told that the Yankees have to be this aggressive with high-priced talent because they have to win or else. Or else what, exactly? People will stop coming to watch them? No one will watch them play on YES? Even without the World Series or even the second round of the playoffs the Yankees were selling four million tickets a year before they started charging obscene prices over at that Eighth Wonder of the World on the other side of 161st. . . .

A-Rod missed the first month and still the Yankees are only three behind Boston. Hughes only recently became the setup guy. Sabathia will be better the second half than he was the first. There ought to be enough talent in the room without having to bring in another Cy Young Award less than 100 games after bringing in the last one. Unless the story with the Yankees is never going to change.


1) If there's a Johnny Mize or Country Slaughter out there, who can be have for the price of his salary and little more, by all means go get him (Barry Zito, anyone?). But selling off young talent (which the Blue Jays are sure to ask for) for veteran talent is what kept the Yankees out of the World Series for fifteen years (cf. Willie McGee, Fred McGriff, Doug Drabek, Jay Buhner, etc.).

2) For five straight years after winning the World Series in 2000, the Yankees played the game of, "This, to be sure, is the final piece of the puzzle." Supposedly, in order, Mike Mussina, Jason Giambi, Jeff Weaver (!), Alex Rodriguez, and Randy Johnson made the Yankees world-beaters, all while the farm system and any kind of youth movement suffered. Now the minors have produced, in the last three years, Melky, Cano, Hughes, Joba, Gardner, and Cervilli, with Kennedy no worse than an open question. Would anyone rather watch this team or go back to the 2005 squad, that joyless bunch of veterans whose lasting image was getting on a plane after Game Four of the Divisional Series to fly 3,000 miles for the privilege of getting ass-kicked by the Angels?

Would Halladay help? Sure he would. But I like this team. Cashman's best move may be, "I'll play these."

1 comment:

SunDevilJoe said...

You mean to tell me that Lupica was actually writing about sports and the Yankees no less! Wow! I thought for sure he would be exerting all of his efforts in support of ObamaCare.
Seriously, I agree 100%. As Joel Sherman of the NYPost put it:

"THESE are not your father's Yankees. More important, they are not Hal Steinbrenner's father's Yankees any more either."

PS The Ted Williams HBO documentary is fabulous. A must see!