Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘New York Yankees’

The Quote Master

The Quote Master

Source: CBS News: Baseball Great Yogi Berra Dead 90: An icon of Sports and Quotes

I think it would be fairly easy just to write a piece about Yogi Berra featuring a lot of his great one-liners. But we’re talking about one of the top 3-5 catchers in the history of Major League Baseball. And yes he was a great comedian, but how many catchers do you know of that were great behind the plate who also have a career 285 bating average with 358 home runs and 1430 RBI. At least statistically we’re talking about a better hitting catcher than Johnny Bench who is still the best all around catcher of all-time. Yogi is at least the best all around catcher pre-Johnny Bench who came up with the Cincinnati Reds in 1967.

As far as his humor I love people who put things in a very direct way telling it exactly how it is and using humor with it. Especially when they’re not making fun of someone, or some group of people. Who can say ironic things and stuff that they know can’t be true, but do it so well and intentionally that you have to laugh at it. Like the Yogi line about baseball being 90% half mental. Well anyone with a basic understanding of mathematics knows that can’t be true. But he was so clever about how he said that, that you had to laugh at that. Or saying obvious things, but doing it with perfect timing that again you have to laugh. “When you come to a fork in road, take it.”

“You can observe a lot just by watching.” Which of course sounds like Captain Obvious under attack and everyone must duck, or get hit in the head with useless information that they’ve known since they were born. But if you’re not someone who tends to be very good about knowing your surroundings and tend to miss things that are right in front of you, that little piece of obvious information can help you. And tell you to pay attention so you don’t miss what is going on right in front of you.

“It aint over till it’s over.” Good message for players who are down a lot in a game, but still have time to turn it around. And instead of thinking, “damn we suck! We’re not only going to get blown out, but we might not bother to score!” You would have Yogi saying something like, “relax, I know its 6-0, but its only the 3rd inning. Besides I got a guy in there who can actually pitch now. So just relax and play the game right and we’ll get back in it.” Telling his players there’s a reason why a World Series is seven games and games themselves are nine innings, because you don’t win those things early on.

Yogi Berra, again one of the top 3-5 catchers of all-time, but similar to Billy Martin and Phil Rizzuto if he wasn’t playing and managing baseball, he could have been a great comedian and talk show host as well. Because of his ability to put things exactly as they are with a little touch of great wit. Which is what great one-liners are. The ability to use common sense to make fun of life and even people in life. The ability to state the obvious without someone saying,”no shit Einstein! You got any other brand new discoveries you would like to share with us?” And because of that and I think especially the humor he’s going to be missed for a long time.

Read Full Post »

Tom SeaverSource: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

To me at least, Tom Seaver and Steve Carlton are the two best starting pitchers of the Baby Boom era. Pitchers who came up in the 1960s and 70s and pitched into the 1980s or so. To me they are the two best pitchers post Sandy Koufax and Bob Gibson, from the generation before them. The only other pitcher I would consider with Seaver and Carlton, would be Jim Palmer. And not, not because I’m an Orioles fan, but he had the career, numbers, big games, everything else that puts him in the same class. Tom Seaver earned all of his victories, pitching for some mediocre New York Mets teams in the late 1960s and 1970s and some Cincinnati Reds teams that were in decline post Big Red Machine of the late 1970s and early 1980s. Not sure there was a better big game pitcher than Seaver of this era.

Classic MLB 11: MLB 1985-Chicago White Sox @ New York Yankees: Tom Seaver Goes For 300th

Read Full Post »

Captain of the New York Yankees

Captain of the New York Yankees


This post was originally posted at FRS Daily Journal

I’m not an expert on Thurman Munson, he died in 1979 and I didn’t start watching baseball until 1983 but what I’ve heard about Thurman Munson, is that there’s not nearly enough information or reporting about him one of the most underrated and under appreciated baseball players of all time. We are talking about one of the best all around Catchers of the 1970s, right there with Carlton Fisk and Johnny Bench. Same skills as both players but ran better and could hit for a better average.

This was a catcher who was a 300 hitter and back then that almost never happened. Besides I’m a Baltimore Orioles fan and the New York Yankees are our arch rivals and Orioles fans hate the Yankees and we had a very good rivalry with each other in the 1970s and 80s and the Yankees cost the Orioles a three division titles in the mid and late 1970s, 76-78. But again what I’ve heard and know about Munson, is a great all around catcher who was headed to the Hall of Fame.

And even though he only played eleven seasons 1969-79, again since he was one of the best all around catchers of an entire decade that alone should be enough to give Thurman Munson consideration for the Hall of Fame. Anytime you’re one of the best players at your positions and one of the best players in the game for an entire decade, that alone should give you strong consideration to be in the Hall of Fame. But that’s not up to me but it took a plane crash in the Summer of 1979 to keep Thurman Munson out of the Hall of Fame because he’s a player that played in pain constantly, similar to Mickey Mantle another great Yankee and who was headed to the Hall of Fame.

If you want to know if Thurman Munson was a great baseball player or not, you need to know what makes a great baseball player. To me that’s someone with no glaring weakness’ and at least with a few glaring strengths and you show these skills consistently for a solid period of time, 5-7 or ten years to me for a catcher to be a great Catcher, you can’t just be a guy that calls a great game, defends his position well and throws the ball well, Rick Dempsey of the Orioles did all of those things very well.

And for about ten years about as well as they could be done. But he was basically a 230 hitter with very little if any power and not much of a run producer his entire career. But he was a good clutch hitter in the playoffs but that alone even with being a great Defensive Catcher. Doesn’t get you in the Hall of Fame, the reason why Thurman Munson was a great catcher because he did everything that Rick Dempsey could do if not better.

But he was also a 300 Hitter who drove in runs. Who also had solid power but not great power but definite threat to go deep. In the American League the two best catchers in the 1970s were Carlton Fisk and Thurman Munson and you could go either way and for that decade I would lean towards Munson, because he played through injuries without losing production. Fisk missed a lot of time because of injuries. When I think of the term captain as it relates to sports, I think of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar of the Los Angeles Lakers who his teammates called Cap.

But captain also fits Thurman Munson of the New York Yankees who was not only the captain of his teams but the leader the quarterback, the on field coach of that team that his teammates knew they better do their jobs or the captain was going to get on them. Who always did whatever he could to make sure his players were in the best position that they could be so they could play as well for the Yankees as possible. Thurman Munson was the Captain of the New York Yankees.

Read Full Post »

Lucky Guy

Lucky Guy

Both the Yankees and Royals missed the AL Playoffs for the first time in a while in 1979.

Read Full Post »

attachment-1-119Source: Classic MLB 11-NBC Sports: MLB 1985-06-22-1985-GOW-New York Yankees @ Detroit Tigers: Full Game

1985 is the perfect example of why MLB should’ve went to the three division format in both the American and National League with the playoff wildcards well before 1994. Because you had four ninety win teams in 1985 and each division champion would’ve had at least ninety wins. The Toronto Blue Jays in the AL East, Kansas City Royals in the AL Central, and the Anaheim Angels in the AL West. The New York Yankees as a wildcard team in 85 would’ve have more wins than every division winner except for the Blue Jays. If you go with two wild cards in each league, the Detroit Tigers would’ve just barely misses the AL Playoffs in 85 with 84 wins, a game behind the Chicago White Sox. 1985 was a great year for MLB and the Yankees and Tigers were both in the playoff race that year. And played each other on NBC which is this game.

Read Full Post »

 

Attachment-1-572

Source: NBC Sports

Source: NBC Sports: MLB 1978- World Series Game 2- New York Yankees @ Los Angeles Dodgers: Full Game

Not often at least since that we’ve seen rematches in the World Series. Which is what 1978 was since the Dodgers played the Yankees in the 1977 World Series as well. But this was a rematch and one of the best World Series ever with two very close teams and the series could’ve gone either way. What separates the World Series of the 1970s from today, is that back then the series wasn’t just between the two teams that won their league championship. Or got hot at the perfect time, but were really against two great teams. Both the 78 Yankees and 78 Dodgers, were deep teams both offensively, as well as pitching. That could hit for average, power, run the bases. Unlike team teams today that might be really good in one area like with their pitching, but barley score enough to win games. Or score a lot of runs, but have weak starting pitching.

Read Full Post »

Baltimore Memorial Stadium
The Orioles started the first of three straight losing seasons in 1986. And 5-6 losing seasons from 1986-91, going through a pretty bad stretch of bad baseball as they closed out Baltimore Memorial Stadium in 1991. 1986 dealing with a bunch of injuries that season and key hitters like Eddie Murray and Fred Lynn dealing with injuries. While the Yankees were still contending, but again not making the playoffs in 1986.

With the Orioles, they were dealing with key injuries to their best players and hitters especially in Murray and Lynn. You’re talking about two of the best all around players in the game at this point. And two of the best power hitters in the game as well. And when your team isn’t that deep to begin with, losing a Lynn and Murray at the same time is really difficult. 1986, very similar as 1984, 87 and 88 for the Yankees. A very solid lineup offensively, but not enough starting pitching and enough depth in the bullpen. For the Yankees to win the AL East, which was a great division back then and still is today.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »