Siberian Baseball

Sunday, June 03, 2007

I know you're all sick of Yanks/Sox, bear with me

As much as I hate to admit it, there were better games that could be on ESPN tonight in the place of the Yankees/Red Sox game. For the record, yes I'm getting tired of the Worldwide Leader's decision to air any and all games between the two teams - burning fans out on the teams and their rivalry can't be any good for baseball and it can actually hurt ratings in the fall.

Piling on to the situation is the unending coverage of Alex Rodriguez being stalked by the media in Toronto as he made the rounds with a woman who wasn't his wife - a situation that I think is really out of bounds.

Say what you will about the old media being too chummy with ballplayers, obliterating the lines of journalistic integrity - teams used to foot the bill for reporters to travel on the road with the team and held sway over who each paper chose to cover the games - but there was a strong sense of what happened on the field and the personal lives of players.

I'm reading a Joe DiMaggio biography right now and there have been more than a few references to DiMaggio going in and out of cathouses both in and out of season. I can't imagine the kind of firestorm this would set off today. Whether it was politicians or athletes, there were plenty of things that were seen but not reported and I don't think that's such a bad thing.

Much has been made of social columnists covering the Rodriguez story and not being forced to be around the players and I think that there's a solid point there. While I don't condone what he's being accused of, I don't think it's the media's place to out Rodriguez on the front page.

Maybe I'm a little too old school like that.

* So, how are you enjoying suspension Sunday? Lou Piniella is out until MLB tells him he can come back and play nice after a problem with an ump bump and there were a few other guys getting run as well. None had as much fun as the Mississippi Braves manager did on his way out, though.

That's because it's impossible to have that much fun.

Michael Barrett will not be catching for Carlos Zambrano until those two can settle their differences and will likely be disciplined by the Cubs.

Anyone care to place odds on Gary Sheffield getting a call from Bud Selig's office for his comments to GQ?

* Roger Clemens is running a little late in his return to the Yankees and Barry Bonds is stalling a bit in his chase for Hank Aaron... Awesome, now what will ESPN cover for 35 minutes on SportsCenter? Oh, right... Clemens' injury and Bonds' chase and why neither is going as quickly as planned.

* It's weird to have Milwaukee ahead in the standings - though it happened last year as well - but their recent skid (4-6 in the last 10 games) hasn't done them any damage in the incredibly weak NL Central.

It's a rich get richer situation in most divisions, with the exception of the Diamondbacks who have rattled off a 9-1 streak to catch up for a three-way tie with Los Angeles and San Diego.

Man, the NL West is weird.

In the AL Central, the Indians have cooled a bit and everyone except for the Royals are within 7.5 games of them. More on the Twins mid-week, but they're showing signs of life. Not many, but two signs are technically plural and count as "signs" of life.

* And because he's fine I can say this: Hey Doug, karma sucks. Guess you should have given the ball back after the World Series, huh? Sorry about your sprained cervix.

This is the long, petty way around to pointing out that the Yankees first base problems are only beginning. With the first- and second-string first basemen out for a while, it's been pretty brutal to watch the stiffs New York is trotting out there.

Expect more than a few problems with position play there this week.

(OK, I feel better now - just saw this from With Leather.)
(Image from

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