Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Someone Hates the Yankees!


So, the idiots at Rumors and Rants have decided to use the rumors that the Yankees are looking for a way to void Jason Giambi's contract as an excuse to unleash a typical, inept anti-Yankees screed. Let's break this one down a little:

Okay, so this makes two straight Yankees posts and, considering we hate the Yankees, that's kind of a lot, but we couldn't pass up another opportunity to mention how they're the worst franchise in baseball with the worst fans and the worst media covering their every move. We start first with the story of how the Yankees are allegedly looking into voiding Jason Giambi's contract because he "admitted" that he was on the juice when he was an Oakland A.

A couple mundane, generic shots at the Yankees without any fact or opinion to back it up, followed by the thin justification for publishing this drivel: a fucking rumor with no evidence to back it up.

However, his "admission" wasn't an admission at all. All he said was that he was sorry for using that "stuff." Maybe he was sorry for eating all those Pop Tarts during the off season instead of working on his swing, speed, defense, conditioning, or, you know, any baseball skills at all.

Ha ha ha ha ha! Did you see what they did there? Pop Tarts! What a rich pop culture reference that is! It's a comedic fact that Pop Tarts are the third most hilarious breakfast food to reference, right behind Cap'n Crunch and cream of wheat.

The Yankees are going to look stupid at the end of all this because they signed Jason Giambi without doing their due diligence to find out whether he was, in fact, a cheater when he was in Oakland.

What exactly is considered "due diligence" when trying to determine if a player was taking legal or illegal supplements for which there was no testing at the time? Just wondering.

They are the most powerful organization in American sports, they signed him to a $120 million contract, and suddenly they're shocked (shocked!) that a mediocre player magically turned into the AL MVP practically overnight.

Jason Giambi's OPS+ rose every season from 1995 to 2001. In every one of those seasons, he was an above-average hitter. Not sure how that translates into "mediocre" or "overnight." Also note the reliance on the ridiculously overused "shocked (shocked!)" conceit. I have the feeling a "not" joke might be coming up later.

Sure the Yankees hate that he duped them into a huge contract, but all this new controversy has only to with the fact that the Yanks are slumping and Giambi is not producing. They need a scapegoat for this mess. But they're really looking for a scapegoat for every season since 2002. Their payroll is out of control, they're an old team, and they have none of the strong pitching they had when they won in 96, 98, 99, and 2000. Basically, they bailed on everything that created their dynasty in the first place, ironically because they wanted to keep winning. Apparently the 1999 team wasn't good enough, in their eyes. They had to win by more and more and more, until 162-0 is a possibility.

First of all, the 1998 team was the great one, not the '99 team. Second, I'm pretty sure that 162-0 was never a possibility, whatever that means. Third, this paragraph relies heavily on the myths that the 1996-2001 dynasty was comprised of young, scrappy gamers playing smallball while the post-2002 teams are a bunch of no-good, greedy mercenaries. In reality, the increasing payroll has only helped the Yankees. From '96-'01, the Yankees averaged 97 wins a season. From '02-'06, they averaged 99.4 wins a season. Luck in short series has been essentially the only difference in the two eras. Small-minded people are incapable of admitting that much of the universe is ruled by luck, so they must assign reasons and explanations to things. Hence, the cute little notion that the modern Yankees lose because they're overpriced. It's nonsense.

Since the Giambi faux-controversy, now it's being thrown around the press that Joe Torre's job may or may not be in jeopardy. Don't let the New York-centric media fool you. This is yet another attempt to scapegoat some one for their crappy start to the 2007 season. They're a poorly constructed, overpaid team that's losing like they should, but New York ownership, fans, and the media don't see it that way. The Yankees have made the playoffs every year since 1996 and Torre guided them to four titles and even more World Series appearances. But hey, what have you done for us lately, Joe? Oh, right.

I grew tired trying to parse this paragraph, and downright exhausted trying to find every single logical error therein. 1) New York-centric media? Uh huh. Those damn liberal New York Jews in the media! Isn't running Hollywood enough for them? 2) Who is attempting to scapegoat Torre, here? The media? The franchise? It's not clear. 3) "losing like they should" — The Yankees have played slightly under .500 for one quarter of a season. And I suppose everyone saw that coming, right? It was so obvious that this team wasn't put together well that everyone picked the Yankees to come in 4th in the A.L. East this year. Must have missed that in the Rumors and Rants pre-season spectacular. 4) We've been over this, but Joe Torre deserves to be fired, win or lose this year. His strategic blunders have harmed the team's chances since he took over, and in recent years, those mistakes have outweighed his calming influence in the clubhouse.

This is where the true naivete of New York sports comes out. The Yankees won four championships in five years, but that wasn't good enough for them. They want more. They always want more. Near perfection wasn't good enough when Maris hit 61 for them or when Alex Rodriguez "only" has a .290, 35 HR, 121 RBI season for them. Everyone just assumed that a fantasy baseball lineup would work in real life, when that has almost never been the case, even when the Yankees were winning title after title in the 20's, 50's, 60's, and 90's.

God, we are so sorry, aren't we, fellow New York sports fans? What audacity to want more winning. After the 2000 World Series, the Yankees should have just folded up shop and let some other teams have a turn for a while. So fucking selfish. Also, can sports as an institution really be naive?

Seven years removed from the Yankees' last title, it has become clear that no one in New York took the time to enjoy the fact that their last run was/is a near-impossibility in modern baseball. Everyone seems to have thought that there was another title right around the corner. Everyone around the Yankees seems to think that no matter what, despite the organization abandoning its philosophy, getting rid of all their good pitching, all their prospects, and their core of veterans, the Yankees would still win the title. Firing Joe Torre and getting rid of Jason Giambi will not fix the Yankees. It's an insanity localized entirely in Yankees fan/organization/media. No fan in their right mind expects a title every year to the point that they don't appreciate what they had and boo their amazing array of current players. But then again, we are talking about Yankee fan, aren't we? Maybe they should boo themselves.

A wonderful grand finale. "Maybe they should boo themselves." Hmm...let's all let that sink in for a moment. I suppose Yankees fans should take after shiny-happy Cubs fans and cheer everyone no matter how they perform.

And no one has ever suggested or thought that getting rid of Jason Giambi will fix the Yankees: that's the most blatant strawman argument I've ever seen.

No wait...that's this whole post.