Results tagged ‘ Jason Giambi ’

The Game That Wouldn’t End…


It was a masterpiece by A.J. Burnett…


Frank Franklin II/AP


Unfortunately, it was an equal masterpiece by Boston’s Josh Beckett, as the Yankees and Red Sox ended regulation play deadlocked at 0-0.


Bill Kostroun/AP 


A.J. went 7 2/3 innings and gave up only one hit.  He had 6 strikeouts, but also had 6 walks.  I guess he was watching Joba Chamberlain too closely last night.  Nevertheless, he did what he was paid to do.  He put his team in position to win, so there’s not more that you can ask.

Beckett went 7 innings, and gave up 4 hits and 2 walks, with 7 strikeouts. 

But it became a game where neither team seemed to want to win.  Both teams left double-digit runners on base (Red Sox 10, Yankees 12).  As the game advanced into extra innings, neither team seriously threatened.  The Yankees would get a few runners, but then they’d be left stranded. 

The Red Sox, meanwhile, had some difficulty getting base runners but when they did, they failed to advance them like the Yankees.

The game seemed to drag on for hours (5 hours, 33 minutes to be exact).  My favorite comment of the night was by Peter Abraham of the LoHud Yankees Blog: 

UPDATE, 12:06 p.m.: This just in: Bill Clinton flying to the Bronx to negotiate the release of 48,262 people held hostage by this game.

Finally, in the bottom of the 15th inning, Derek Jeter singled to start the inning.  After Johnny Damon popped out on the foul side of first base and Mark Teixeira struck out, Alex Rodriguez came to the plate.  Much as been talked about A-Rod’s homerless streak, but with one swing of the bat, the streak, like the Yankees losing streak to the Sox a day earlier, became a distant memory.  A two-run homer to left gave the Yankees a walk-off win.  Yes, Julia, I was right about the walk-off…I just had the wrong inning!


Bill Kostroun/AP 


So, the Yankees have guaranteed that they will not lose this series.  So, it is now a question whether the Red Sox can win the final two games of the series to invoke the tie-breakers.  The Sox are certainly a capable team, but right now, this minute, I’d say ‘Advantage Scott!’.


John Munson/The Star Ledger


Here are the revised totals of the series so far:




Red Sox                                  6

Yankees                                  15


Home Runs

Red Sox                                  2

Yankees                                  5



Red Sox                                  0

Yankees                                  2


Winner:                                 T.B.D.


The Yankees, at 66-42, now lead the American League East by 4 ½ games over the Red Sox and 6 games over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Life is good for a Yankees fan… (Yankees fan Steve Macary)


A Very Busy Day…

It was a blood bath today in Major League Baseball.  A friend indicated that it felt like the Trading Deadline, but I’d have to say that I was quite surprised by the moves that were made.  Granted, it didn’t take a rocket scientist to know that John Smoltz’s time in the Red Sox starting rotation was nearing its end.  However, I did not expect that he’d be DFA’d.  I really thought that he would move into a long relief role, or perhaps help set up Jonathan Papelbon.  If this is truly it for Smoltz, I am saddened that his final appearance was a loss to the Yankees.  Well, the Yankees victory was nice, don’t get me wrong, but for Smoltz the man, he deserved better.  I always thought that he’d be the one to know when to exit the game.  Maybe he gets another chance, but then again, maybe not.  Either way, he is a class guy and I am honored that I had the privilege to watch him play.


Paul Bereswill/Getty Images 


Boston also DFA’d pitcher Billy Traber, a former Yankee or Oriole, who relieved Smoltz in yesterday’s game and, in Julia‘s words, took a bullet for the team to save the bullpen.   Of course, his thanks was a one-way ticket out of a Red Sox uniform.


File:AAAA8857 Billy Traber.jpg

Wikimedia Commons/UTC 


Another cut that caught me by surprise was the release of Jason Giambi by the Oakland A’s.  I had bought tickets for the Yankees visit to Oakland to play the A’s later this month, and I had been hopeful that Giambi would be off the DL and in the game.  But unfortunately, it was not meant to be.  Oakland released Giambi from the DL, due primarily to his .193 batting average.  I didn’t expect the A’s to pick up Giambi’s option this fall, but I never expected he’d be cut before the season was over.  He’s not a fit for the current Yankees roster, so coming back to New York will not be in the cards.  But hopefully, he’ll catch on somewhere so that he can go out his way.


Jason Giambi of the Oakland Athletics poses during photo day at the Athletics spring training complex on February 22, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Jason Giambi

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images


Bill Kostroun/AP 


The American Idle, a/k/a Carl Pavano, was traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Minnesota Twins.  I guess it was an admission by the Twins that they aren’t really interested in making the play-offs since they just acquired a guy who thrives in losing environments.  From Cleveland’s perspective, the deal makes sense since it opens a slot in the rotation for Justin Masterson who was recently acquired from Boston in the Victor Martinez trade.




The Toronto Blue Jays attempted to push RF Alex Rios through waivers, but he was claimed by another team.  They now have to decide whether they’ll trade Rios to the other team if they can work out a trade or perhaps they just hang on to him.  It’s unlikely that they’d simply let Rios go to the other team for nothing.



Pitcher Vicente Padilla was also DFA’d by the Texas Rangers.  Ah, I feel so bad for the headhunter.  Um, not really…



On the bright side, the Yankees didn’t acquire another pitcher with a losing record and a plus 5.00 ERA to go with Chad Gaudin and Russ Ortiz so the day wasn’t a total loss…

GlassHalf.jpg image by sundayfunnies 

He Didn’t Mean To Do It…

Mark Melancon insists that he did not intentionally hit Boston’s Dustin Pedroia in Thursday’s game.  Personally, I liked Manager Joe Girardi’s explanation.  “Some pitchers are much more capable of throwing the ball exactly where they want to on a consistent basis. Those guys are called Hall of Famers.”

I do believe that it was unintentional.  Melancon is trying hard to earn a roster spot, and it would be foolish for him to risk his opportunity by purposely allowing a Boston base runner in a critical game regardless of the circumstances.


Kathy Willens/AP 



Hey Julia, don’t look now but here comes Carsten Charles Sabathia…  J


IMAGES HAVE BEEN DIGITALLY DESATURATED) CC Sabathia #52 of the New York Yankees poses during Photo Day on February 19, 2009 at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Florida.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** CC Sabathia 


Nick Laham/Getty Images




Fugetaboutit, It Was a Home Run!…

Brian Cashman, did I mention how much I appreciate the investment you made in A.J. Burnett?

The Yankees salvaged the final game of the four game series with the Cleveland Indians to settle for a split in the first series ever played at the new Yankee Stadium. Considering that the Yankees lost games of 10-2 and 22-4, taking 2 of 4 sounds like a fairly good deal.  The last time the Yankees gave up two big innings in a series like this, they were known as the New York Highlanders and it was 1907. 

Branch Rickey, who is best known as the Dodgers GM who broke the color barrier by signing Jackie Robinson, was a left fielder on the team. 

The Sporting News

Jack Chesbro, who had won 41 games three years earlier, was winding down a great career.  San Jose’s own Hal Chase was the Yankees first baseman. 

Courtesy Hal Edward Chase III

Sunday brought the return of Carl “American Idle” Pavano, and he pitched the way he should have when he wore pinstripes. He pitched six innings, gave up 4 hits and 1 walk, and struck out 4. He turned over the game to the Cleveland bullpen, with a 3-1 lead. Fortunately, the Yankees rallied against the Tribe, thanks in large part to a disputed two-run pinch hit homer by Jorge Posada. The play represented the first time the officials used the video replay, but the upon review, the homer stood. The Indians had claimed fan interference.

Posada hits controversial HR in win


A.J. Burnett had gotten into trouble earlier in the inning, when he loaded the bases with one out. A.J. struggled with his control today, walking 7 batters and throwing three wild pitches. But he kept the Yankees in the game, until he couldn’t go any further. Joe Girardi went to reliever Jonathan Albaladejo who did a great job in retiring the next two batters. Then, it was time for Posada’s heroics.

Cody Ransom (he’s still a toad) hit a three-run double in the 8th to provide the final margin of victory, 7-3. I am not quite sure why Shin-Soo Choo slowed up and let Ransom’s hit drop, but I’ll take it. Maybe the ghosts of The House That Ruth Built finally moved across the street after seeing Saturday’s debacle.

The game was closed out by the dynamic duo of Brian Bruney (8th) and Mariano Rivera (9th). It was not a save situation for Mo due to Ransom’s insurance runs. Albaladejo got the win (1-0).

A.J. Burnett may not have had his best stuff today, but again, he has proven he is a warrior and the guy knows how to pitch. I have great confidence when Burnett pitches. He may not get the decision and he might take the loss, but you know that he’s going to give it everything he’s got and clearly he’s nobody’s fool. The guy has heart, and the last guy who pitched like that in pinstripes (David Cone) had a memorable Yankees career.

David Cone after he pitched a perfect game against the Montreal Expos on July 18, 1999.


The Yankees are in second place, 2.5 games behind the AL East Leader, the surprising Toronto Blue Jays. Julia‘s Red Sox are a half-game back, tied for third with the Baltimore Orioles.

Next up at Yankee Stadium is an old friend. Jason Giambi returns to the Bronx to check out the new Stadium with his team, the Oakland A’s.

Jason Giambi Picture

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images


Nomar Garciaparra will be in tow. I think he’s played a meaningful game or two in the Bronx.

Speaking of old friends…well, maybe less emphasis on the “friends” part, congratulations to Randy Johnson for his stellar performance against his old team, the Arizona Diamondbacks. He had a no-hitter into the 7th inning before giving up a double to Augie Ojeda. Johnson stranded Ojeda at third, and left the game after 7 innings. He gave up just one hit, Ojeda’s double, and struck out 7. It was Johnson’s first victory of the season (1-2) and the 296th of his career. As one who never minds seeing the D-Backs lose, congrats to the Big Unit for the vintage performance!


I had told some Dodger friends that the Yankees would have a better record than their team by the end of week. The only problem? The Dodgers haven’t lost since. Yikes! Joe Torre and company continued their 8-game winning streak with a 14-2 victory over the Colorado Rockies. Manny Ramirez may be all that, but Matt Kemp is finally becoming the man for the Dodgers. Credit Donnie Baseball for his help in Kemp’s realization of his five-tool talent.

Getty Images

The Red Sox won. Bummer…


Just kidding, Julia! 🙂

Have a great week!


He’s The Man…


The third baseman that I now refer to as the “Thin Toad”¹ was finally benched.  Ramiro Pena replaced Cody Ransom at third base when the Yankees faced the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night at Tropicana Field.

¹During a spring training game in the late 90’s, Yankees owner George Steinbrenner labeled pitcher Hideki Irabu as a ‘fat puss-filled toad’ when Irabu failed to cover first base on a routine ground ball.

Other lineup changes included a day off for left fielder Johnny Damon.  Damon has been enduring a personal issue involving his mother, and has been weakened both mentally and physically.  Also going to the bench is DH Hideki Matsui, who has struggled out of the gate with a .125 batting average.


Catcher Jorge Posada moved to DH, while catching duties were handled by Jose Molina.  Mark Teixeira was back in the lineup at first base, while Nick Swisher moved to left field.

The moves left Swisher batting clean-up.  Whoa!  An ace reliever one night, and Babe Ruth the next!…

Swisher responded with his fourth home run of the young season.


Meanwhile, what can I say about Yankees pitcher A.J. Burnett?  He’s the stopper.  He’s the ace.  He’s the man…


The Yankees defeated the Tampa Bay Rays 7-2.  It had been a pitcher’s duel until Derek Jeter’s three-run homer blew the game open in the 9th.  But the night belonged to the Man…


I have continued to follow the career of Jason Giambi, and will be a big fan of his so long as the Oakland A’s aren’t playing the New York Yankees. has profiled Giambi’s workout regiment, and it is a must-read for anyone looking to lose a few pounds!

If you are looking to fit into that bikini or swimsuit, you might want to try the G-Workout!  Well, maybe not.  Too funny!


Goodnight, All!


Let’s Fast Forward to May…

This has not been a great start to the 2009 season…at least for Yankees fans…

April, in recent years, has proven to be a very challenging month for the Yankees.  With the most Grapefruit League victories and the new high profile acquisitions, I was hopeful that April would be a very powerful month for a change.

Don’t get me wrong, it is way too early to write off this month or even this week.  As I write this post, the Yankees are only 0-2, after losing to the Baltimore Orioles 7-5 on Wednesday night. 


Today started off on the wrong foot as the Joba Chamberlain DUI Video hit the mainstream newspapers.  Joba, how could you say anything bad about Yogi Berra of all people?  Yogi laughed it off, and Joba apologized but there are now skeptics who wonder if Joba has truly matured beyond his 23 years.  I believe that he has and when he says that the DUI stop was the best thing that happened to him, I trust his words.

 Police video shows (top) Yankee pitcher Joba Chamberlain's October arrest for DUI.

It is now up to Joba to live his words, but I feel the new criticisms are unfair and not warranted.  He has been penalized for his actions, and, in my opinion, he has said and done the right things since the incident.  He even made nice with Big Papi over the winter…

David Ortiz and Joba Chamberlain at CES today

Back to the Yankees, I think it will only take a few key hits and some solid pitching to get the Yanks back on track.  I feel good about A.J. Burnett starting the next game.


Trust me, I expect to be fully ready for Julia‘s birthday weekend when the Yankees travel to Fenway Park.  And, no, Julia, the Yankees will won’t be going 0-162! 

Getty Images


It was nice to see Jason Giambi back on the ESPN highlights.  In Tuesday’s 6-4 win over the Los Angeles Angels, Jason went 3 for 5, with a run scoring double in the 8th.  It was great to see the Giambino in action, although the stubble on his face, tinged in grey, looks a little odd…

The A’s also claimed pitcher Dan Giese off waivers from the Yankees.  Giese was designated for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Ramiro Pena.


As everyone outside of me probably knows, Wally the Green Monster is the official Mascot of the Boston Red Sox.  On my weekend trip to Boston, Julia presented me with a gift for making the journey.  I am appreciative, and he has taken his rightful place at the FEET of my Yankee bear, Lou…

















Young and stupid, or so the story goes…



“I knew we weren’t taking Tic Tacs”…


Alex Rodriguez

Alejandra Villa Newsday


Facing the media in Tampa, Alex Rodriguez admitted that his cousin had introduced him to “boli” under the presumption that it was an over-the-counter substance in the Dominican Republic.  The cousin injected Alex with the substance about two times per month on six-month cycles to help him get an energy boost.  These cycles were administered from 2001 through 2003 while Alex was a member of the Texas Rangers.


Alex insists that he stopped taking the drug in 2003 and has not taken it since that time. 


He opened the press conference with a prepared statement, in which he thanked the Yankees and the fans for their support.  The press conference lasted 32 minutes, and was attended by GM Brian Cashman, Manager Joe Girardi, Co-Chairman Hank Steinbrenner, and SVP Felix Lopez, as well as players Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, and Andy Pettitte. 


Is this enough?  Time will tell.  I agree with the comments made by David Ortiz that any player, going forward, who tests positive for PEDs should be banned for one year.  That obviously does not apply to Alex Rodriguez and his situation, but the incident occurred six years ago.  Major League Baseball is directly responsible for lagging behind the other major sports in implementing and enforcing a strict drug policy.  I don’t feel the same way about A-Rod that I did prior to the PEDs revelation, however, he does deserve the opportunity to regain our trust. 


“I know that I am in a position where I have to earn my trust back,” Alex said.  “And over time, I am confident, and at the end of my career, people will see this for what it is – a stupid mistake and a lesson learned for a guy with a lot of baseball left to play.”


If Alex can stay true to these words, I do feel that he can salvage some of his credibility and gain entry into the Hall of Fame when the time comes (contrary to what Phillies pitcher Jamie Moyer may believe).  Being “stupid” is no longer a tolerable excuse, Alex.  You have to prove to us that you belong…




Meanwhile, in Monday’s press conference with Mark Teixeira…


“I watch ‘Sesame Street’ in the morning,” Teixeira said.  “And then I watch ‘Max & Ruby’ at night.”


What?  He should be BANNED from baseball for a year! 


Seriously, we moved from the Rock Star at First Base…


Rock Star


 …to Mr. Rogers in the span of one year.



Well, at least Mr. Rogers can hit…






Good moves by the BoSox…

As much as I hate to give credit to the Red Sox, I thought the signings of SP John Smoltz and OF Rocco Baldelli were excellent moves.  Clearly, the Red Sox can now stack up a rotation that meets or exceeds anybody.  There’s risk with both players, but the price offsets much of the risk.  These were good moves by Theo, and of course, Smoltzie gives the Red Sox the ability to seriously entertain moving Clay Buchholz for better pieces to the puzzle.

Red Sox or not, it is going to be tough to see John Smoltz in anything other than a Braves uniform…

Meanwhile, the Yankees are actively trying to move either Xavier Nady or Nick Swisher.  By all accounts, it will be the former.  Either way, I am not convinced that you want Swisher as your starting right fielder.  I’d rather have him as the fourth outfielder, who can back up Mark Teixeira if necessary.  It’s tough having question marks in both right and center.  Johnny Damon is the only certainty in the outfield. Anyone got an extra $20 mil or so lying around that we can use to bring Manny to the Bronx? 

Rob Neyer makes a good argument on his ESPN blog for why the Yankees should just hang on to both Nady and Swisher.  He’s right…

I like the way the Andy Pettitte camp floated the possibility that Andy would be open to returning to the Astros.  Of course, the Astros GM subsequently stated that Andy would not fit their budget.  I still think Andy will eventually re-sign with the Yankees, but this prolonged negotiation, with so much posturing by both sides, is getting old. 

I thought the photo of Jason Giambi putting his head on Billy Beane’s shoulder during yesterday’s press conference was priceless.  Clearly, the old “G” is  back.  Well, in every way except the MVP caliber production that the A’s were accustomed to in 1999 or 2000.  Still, Giambi is going to have a much more positive impact on the A’s clubhouse than he ever did or could have with the Yankees clubhouse. 

I saw that Kris Benson pitched for the Dodgers.  I have always liked Benson, and I am hopeful that a team takes a chance on him and that he has the opportunity to capture some of the promise he held when he was younger.  I have a Benson signed baseball from his days with the Pirates, and I have always hoped that he would achieve success in the major leagues.  But injuries have derailed his career.  Nevertheless, here’s to you, Kent.  Hopefully, the Dodgers saw enough that you can make it to Joe Torre’s lineup card…

Hey Brett Favre…it’s called retirement; try it, you might like it…

How cool would it be for Joe Flacco to defeat the mighty Titans?…

Whatever happened to former Yankee second baseman Brian Doyle?…

I don’t know the answer to this question, but have the top pitcher and hitter to be traded at the trading deadline ever been subsequently signed as free agents by the same team in the subsequent offseason prior to this year?

Well, the battle today was won by the Red Sox, but the war ensues…

Goodnight all!



Number 16 Back in Oakland…

In a way, it was a little bittersweet watching the Jason Giambi press conference.  Much has been written about Jason’s failure to live up to expectations for his 7 year, $120 million contract with the Yankees.  Granted, the steroids period was tough, but I remember how excited I was when the Yankees signed Giambi.  His first couple of years were strong (not quite near his highs with Oakland but still respectable), the down years during the steroid issue, but I think Jason ended his career with the Yankees on a high note.  As much as I would have liked to have seen the Yankees resign Giambi, that was never going to happen with the plethora of DH types on the roster, most notably Hideki Matsui but potentially Jorge Posada too depending upon his recovery.  So, given that Jason idolized Mickey Mantle, it was appropriate that he left after 7 years.

I was glad to see Eric Mangini get another chance in the NFL with the Cleveland Browns.  I am not a Jets fan, but I place more blame on Brett Favre for the Jets season-ending slide that cost them the play-offs. 

I get the sense that despite the rhetoric about Andy Pettitte rejecting the Yankees $10 million offer, they are working behind the scenes to put a deal together…

I saw an article today that the Vikings are interested in Matt Cassel.  I had wondered about that myself earlier, but figured that if the Patriots franchise Cassel, it would cost too much to acquire him (assuming that Tom Brady is healthy and the Pats feel secure in letting Cassel go).  As evidenced by the Philadelphia game, Tavaris Jackson is not the answer, and I think Cassel would be a great fit.  Time will tell…

Peter Gammons mentioned a “testiness” that existed between A-Rod and Mark Teixeira in Texas.  I had wondered what their relationship was like, but there doesn’t seem to be much written about their prior relationship.  Of course, it made me wonder…does A-Rod have a relationship with anyone besides Madonna?  Mark definitely has his work cut out for him with those errant throws coming in from A-Rod, DJ, and Cano…

It’s hard to get excited about a Phillies opening day lineup that will have Marcus Giles at 2B (Chase Utley’s absence will definitely be felt)…

I love the Yankees’ united “Why?  Because we can” approach to responding to the critics…

I agree with Peter Gammons take on why Mark Teixeira went with the Yankees.  It came down to his wife’s shopping preferences.  I can’t say that I’ve shopped in Boston, but c’mon, there’s nothing like Manhattan.  Then again, $180 million will only go so far in New York City…

The advantage to the Yankees not putting names on the back of jerseys?  I can wear my Jason Giambi jersey with pride, and everyone will think that I am supporting the latest and greatest Yankee first baseman!  Sweet! 🙂



The Unveiling of Big Teix…

With the Mark Teixeira signing officially out of the way, the Yankees began their off-season rummage search with the signings of Jason Johnson and Angel Berroa.  I think I heard something about John Rodriguez too.  Granted, Berroa was a previous ROY, but I really would not have known anything about him if he had not been traded to the Dodgers last year to fill-in for Rafael Furcal (I lived in LA at the time).  I guess the Yankees are looking for bodies for Tampa next month…

As much as I love Andy Pettitte, I completely agree with the Yankees’ approach.  I really think that no organization knows when to part ways with aging players like Boston, and now is the time for the Yankees to make one of those hard decisions.  At this point in his career and given the current market, Andy is simply not a $10 million a year guy anymore.  Those resources are better served elsewhere.  With Phil Hughes, Ian Kennedy, Alfredo Aceves, and now Jason Johnson in reserve, the Yanks should try to take a chance on someone like Ben Sheets.

Congratulations to Jason Giambi for his new deal, pending a physical, with Oakland.  He did redeem himself in my eyes with his play last season, and I think it’s fitting that he returns to his original team.  I fully expect to lose a game next year due to a ninth inning Giambino home run…

My favorite quote today was by Yankee co-chairman Hal Steinbrenner:  “If some owners are upset we invest in our team, I’m not going to lose any sleep over it.”  I think Hal is proving to be a very capable leader for the organization.

Is Derek Jeter really going to 35 in June?  Wow!  Where did the years go?  It seems like he was just an 18 year old kid out of Kalamazoo…

I kind of like those rumors of Trevor Hoffman potentially going to the Dodgers.  It seems like a good fit.  He makes his home in the area, and I don’t think Joe Torre wants to hand the full-time closer’s role to Jonathan Broxton just yet. 

I saw a return of new articles reporting that Bobby Valentine would be a leading candidate for the Yankees managerial post if Girardi fails this year.  Ugh, that’s not really something I’d want to see regardless of what happens and no matter how much Bobby V may have changed…

With the Yankees luck in recent years, Carl Pavano will win 15 games for the Tribe…

Starting to see more rumors involving Xavier Nady so I suspect that he may be the odd man out.  All things considered, I’d probably rather see Nick Swisher go since I think he is better suited for first base than an outfield position as evidenced by Chicago last year.  It would be a shame for the Yankees half billion dollar investment to go array because of poor OF decisions this winter (I am sure that my Red Sox friends are losing sleep over that one!  Ha!).

Personally, I’d give a Hall of Fame Vote to Jim Rice if I could.  Regardless of what has been said, the fact remains that the guy was one of the most feared hitters of the 70’s. 

Whatever happened to Butch Hobson?…