Nothing seems to faze Ibanez. His 40-year-old eyes have seen everything there is to see in the game of baseball and is one of the most prepared hitters in the game.
Ibanez is “Captain Video” of the Yankees. Much like Hall-of-Famer Tony Gwynn who was given the nickname for his intense study of opposing pitchers, Ibanez glues himself to the screen — deeply studying pitchers’ tendencies and movements.
The 40-year-old’s efforts in the weight room and batting cages go beyond teammates 10-to-15 years his minor. It’s his preparation and ceaseless work ethic that keeps Ibanez playing at a high level after 17 big league seasons.
Whenever Ibanez delivers a longball in the stands, Yankees’ radio voice John Sterling booms over the WCBS (AM) 880 airwaves “Raul… so cool!” Cool is exactly what Ibanez is. Never fazed, never overawed, never unprepared.
Ibanez wasn’t around when the Yankees came up short in their recent playoff miseries. Many of the Yankees’ heavy hitters wilted in last year’s ALDS elimination at the hands of the Tigers’ power pitchers.
Where others have failed, Ibanez is the one who holds the key to whether the Yankees will reach the 2012 World Series.
Posted: October 13, 2012 at 04:58 PM | 28 comment(s)
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