And The Countdown To The Ones That Count Comes Closer To Its Culmination
of right now, there are no more months, weeks or days to wait for
another season of baseball to begin.. just hours. The ’09 season
officially kicks off in about 16 of those hours, with the first game of
the year to be played at 8:00 p.m. between the Braves and Phillies at
Citizens Bank Park. To say the least: Baseball is back. To elaborate:
Baseball is back… and possibly better than ever if you’re a Yankee
fan. If you’re looking for any indication, this past double dose
preview between the Yanks and Cubs was it. No, it was not anything especially spectacular, but it was a solid look at what the Yanks have going for
them. Though there is no need to lay it out, I feel like going through
the list, [merely because it puts a smile on my face], so here it is:
Why ’09 Is Looking Good In Yankee Universe:
1.) Because of the 5 fellas that make up the rotation to slay all rotations:
CC Sabathia, Chien-Ming Wang, A.J. Burnett
Andy Pettitte, Joba Chamberlain
No further explanation needed.
2.) Because the new stadium seems to have a mind of its own:
being a mere block away and having dimensions exactly the same as the
stadium once known by the same name [instead of with the "old" prefix
it currently has before its title], this new ballpark does not seem to
be the same playing field if you watched Friday and Saturday’s games.
Yankee Stadium [the latter] has apparently adapted the traits of its
inhabitants and has begun to exhibit signs that it isn’t satisfied with
the amount of home runs by the Yankees, despite the fact that that
facet of their game is what gave them their nickname, the Bronx Bombers. Two
unofficial games are obviously not substantial evidence, but 7 long
balls by the team in two days? The only possible explanations I can
think of are:
a) because the way the wind blows at the Colosseum is magically in the direction of the bleachers
b) because the Cubs were throwing BP
c) because the ghosts of pinstriped past made the trip for the games, took their cue from Christopher Lloyd and worked a little magic,
d) because the Yanks were just pumped [hopefully not because of any juice of the illegal variety]…
I think it may or may not be a combination of the above, but, either way, I think it’s still foreshadowing something…
3.) Because sooomeone likes New York:
with that someone being Mark “Does 2 back to back home runs in an
unofficial game still count toward my Yankeeometer?” Teixeira. Again,
despite the fact that the last two games were technically still Spring
Training and will not appear in official stats for the year, I still like to
think they count… they are the man’s first in Yankee Stadium. They
sure as hell mean something to him.
4.) Because my gut is telling me RC will be having an incredible season [unlike his last]:
Reason #1: because he can’t have a worse one than he did last season, can he?
Reason #2: He hit the first homer [though unofficial] and the Baseball Gods plan these things…
#3: Robbie just seems like the bounce back kind of kid and has a fresh
start as an opportunity to do that. New season, new stadium, seemingly
new attitude in the clubhouse… ’06 Robbie is coming back.
5.) Because Joe G. has realized New York is not Florida:
… despite the fact that everyone from New York vacations and/or
retires there. However, tossing that tidbit aside, let me say this:
Thank you. It took a season Yankee fans are still popping prescription
pills attempting to forget to help you understand that talking the talk
ain’t good enough and that the managerial skills that got you Manager of
the Year as skipper for the Marlins in ’05 don’t mean anything in New
York, but you’re learning and shaking things up this year, so I’ll
award you some points. However, all is not forgiven. If you’re going to
promise something and wear that promise every night on your back,
deliver it. If you are unable to, spare us the sugarcoating attempts,
Other Reasons That Need No Excessive Elaboration:
6.) Brett Gardner: Two words.. speed kills [especially if you figure a hot bat into the equation, which I'm hoping he'll display all season].
7.) Jorge Posada: IF he remains as healthy as he seems, it’ll be great to have him back.
8.) Brian Bruney: I’m positive he’ll step up to the challenge and perform in the set up role.
9.) Nick Swisher:
He may have lost his job before he got it, but his personality and
energy is still a plus to the team, whether or not he gets playing time.
Closing it out with…
10.) Mo: [Of course.] Despite the continued whispers we’re sure to hear [every year from here on out] of his ever increasing age, I’m sure he’ll still be kicking a** and taking names this year.
So, to sum it up, let me just ask:
Are You Ready?
P.S. Jason [the original MLBlog in-gamer host], over at Heartland Pinstripes, will be hosting an HDLR [Heartland Digital Living Room] for tomorrow’s game, so be sure to stop by and join in if you can. All fans are welcome.