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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Heyman: Without Jeter, Yankees struggles worse as Tigers go up 2-0 in ALCS

Heyman! Jeter! Yankees! Tigers!

With Derek Jeter splitting the day between the doctor’s office and his home in Manhattan, there were hopes among all the remaining Yankees that they might raise their game to compensate for the loss of their captain. But, if anything, they lowered their performance.

Almost all the Yankees’ remaining high-paid star hitters, including supertsr Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, Nick Swisher and the storied team’s other iconic player Alex Rodriguez, continued to struggle and in some cases looked even worse, as the Tigers, behind Anibal Sanchez’s dominance, went up two games to none in the ALCS.

The Yankees find themselves in a massive hole after losing two straight games at home and also their beloved captain, and now they must find a way to break through against baseball’s best and hottest pitcher, Justin Verlander in Game 3 at Detroit. Judging by how they were flummoxed by Sanchez in the 3-0 defeat (and really this whole postseason), the Yankees’ chances don’t look especially promising against the overpowering, unshakeable Verlander back in Detroit.

...There are culprits everywhere, not just A-Rod. Cano is in an historic hitting slump. Cano made it 0-for-his-last-26 this postseason, a major-league for ineptitude in one postseason.

It’s hard to believe Cano’s hitting is actually slightly worse than that of Alex Rodriguez, Granderson and Swisher, the black hole (Nos. 6 through 8) in a reconfigured Yankees lineup to accommodate the loss of Jeter and everyone’s varying degrees of struggle. A-Rod went 1 for 4 with two strikeouts, the hitting coming against Coke after he went 0-for-3 against the righthander Sanchez. It’ll be interesting to see whether A-Rod, now 0 for 18 with 12 strikeouts vs. right-handers in the playoffs, stays in the lineup vs. Verlander; since he was 4 for 6 with two home runs against Verlander in 2012, the guess is yes.

Repoz Posted: October 14, 2012 at 07:58 PM | 111 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: tigers, yankees

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   1. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: October 14, 2012 at 08:43 PM (#4270155)
Chavez is 0-11 this postseason, with 6 strikeouts. That's a higher strikeout rate than A-Rod. There is no reason to take A-Rod out of the lineup for Chavez.

Russell Martin had that homer in Game One of the ALDS, but he's been .174/.240/.217 since then.

Rodriguez, Cano, Granderson, Swisher, Martin and Chavez have combined for a .118/.185/.188 line this postseason over 157 PAs.

The team minus Jeter has hit .190/.266/.312. Take out Ibanez, too, and it's .172/.242/.256.

If they had hit just "badly", they would probably be up 2-0 now after sweeping the ALDS.
   2. DKDC Posted: October 14, 2012 at 08:46 PM (#4270167)
If the Orioles had hit just "badly", they would've swept the Yanks (OK, maybe it would've taken four games because of Johnson's game 1 implosion).

That ain't the world we live in, though.
   3. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: October 14, 2012 at 08:46 PM (#4270173)
All game I was thinking how your suggestion that the Yankees needed a Game Two 2000 ALCS performance and how it seemed they were getting it. The offense is just shockingly poor right now.
   4. Tom Nawrocki Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:08 PM (#4270224)
The best thing about this is that maybe people will stop talking in an awestruck fashion about how hard it is to pitch in the mighty AL East.
   5. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:15 PM (#4270235)
If the Orioles had hit just "badly", they would've swept the Yanks (OK, maybe it would've taken four games because of Johnson's game 1 implosion).
The guys on the Yankees who are hitting .118/.185/.188 are considerably more talented than the Orioles' guys who stunk up the joint. The Yankees have played proportionally worse than those players did.
   6. Bruce Markusen Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:17 PM (#4270241)
Cano's performance is the one that is most inexcusable. He'd not old, he's not hurt, he was on a tear at the end of the regular seaso, and now he looks like the honey badger up there. And this is a guy who wants an Alex Rodriguez type contract? I don't think so.
   7. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:23 PM (#4270263)
Cano's performance is the one that is most inexcusable. He'd not old, he's not hurt, he was on a tear at the end of the regular seaso, and now he looks like the honey badger up there. And this is a guy who wants an Alex Rodriguez type contract? I don't think so.

Wasn't there a discussion just recently on this board about how infuriatingly streaky Cano can be? Maybe I'm misremembering, I don't follow NY that closely. But if that is the case, then unfortunately for NY his flat patch has come at a bad time.

Also, I don't recall Jeter doing any special in the 9th inning or later of game 1....
   8. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:24 PM (#4270268)
Chavez is 0-11 this postseason, with 6 strikeouts. That's a higher strikeout rate than A-Rod. There is no reason to take A-Rod out of the lineup for Chavez.

Russell Martin had that homer in Game One of the ALDS, but he's been .174/.240/.217 since then.

Rodriguez, Cano, Granderson, Swisher, Martin and Chavez have combined for a .118/.185/.188 line this postseason over 157 PAs.

The team minus Jeter has hit .190/.266/.312. Take out Ibanez, too, and it's .172/.242/.256.

If they had hit just "badly", they would probably be up 2-0 now after sweeping the ALDS.


How long before rumors of THE BIG FIX start spreading?
   9. bartap74 Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:26 PM (#4270272)
Cano's current post-season hitless streak is the longest in baseball history, which is incredible if you think about it. The whole lineup looked like they would rather be somewhere else.
   10. SoSH U at work Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:28 PM (#4270283)
How long before rumors of THE BIG FIX start spreading?


A very, very, very long time.
   11. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:29 PM (#4270285)
Wasn't there a discussion just recently on this board about how infuriatingly streaky Cano can be? Maybe I'm misremembering, I don't follow NY that closely. But if that is the case, then unfortunately for NY his flat patch has come at a bad time.

Yeah, just before his season ending rampage he'd been in a nearly month long funk where he'd gone .204 / .297 / .347 / .644. He's gone into more than one streak like that, usually coinciding with his seeming desire to pull every pitch. That Yankee Stadium short porch is kind of like Homer Simpson's alcohol to a lot of the Yanks' lefthanded sluggers; sometimes it's the solution but almost as often it can be a big, big problem.
   12. DKDC Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:30 PM (#4270286)
#5,

Not really. The O's put up an OPS in the ALDS that was 230 points below their season OPS. The Yankees were 180 points below their season OPS. The O's underperformed by more (and that's not even accounting for the fact that they got to face Phil Hughes).
   13. Tom Nawrocki Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:41 PM (#4270325)
Cano's performance is the one that is most inexcusable. He'd not old, he's not hurt, he was on a tear at the end of the regular seaso,


"On a tear" really understates it. Over that Yankees' last nine games, Cano hit .615/.628/1.026. He had at least two hits in each of the nine games, and finished the regular season on a 24-for-39 streak.
   14. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:44 PM (#4270330)
Wow. They've scored runs in precisely one of the first twenty-one innings against the Tigers, who haven't thrown their best (or second-best IMO) pitcher yet.

the Yankees’ chances don’t look especially promising against the overpowering, unshakeable Verlander back in Detroit.


I mean, of course. Also, the sky is often blue and gravity pulls us towards the floor. This Yankee team has been making guys like Anibal Sanchez and Fister look like all-time greats. It doesn't look good for the rest of the series.

But there's a day off, and a change of scenery. If this team chooses to hit like this, the series will be over soon enough. But there's nothing preventing them from getting to Verlander; he's not that good.
   15. rconn23 Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:50 PM (#4270352)
"The O's underperformed by more (and that's not even accounting for the fact that they got to face Phil Hughes)."

Considering the Orioles ended the regular season with a +7 run differential, let's be honest, any "underperforming" they did was just coming back down to earth.
   16. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:52 PM (#4270362)
It's not like the Tigers are exactly crushing the baseball. If the Yanks can win Verlander's game they've got CC to try and even it up.
   17. winnipegwhip Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:54 PM (#4270370)
This occurence of shutting down a batter or batters during the postseason must be partly due to a more concentrated effort in scouting and plans of attack. In the regular season a team will face the Yankees for 3 or 4 games and move on to play another opponent. In the postseason a more concentrated and determined game plan is established for a batter or group of batters and it may be more effective.

I have often thought the same with postseason hockey. How can a eighth place seed beat the number one seed when that number one team beat them in the regular season consistently? Well unlike the regular season where a team plays Pittsburgh tonight, in Buffalo two nights later and then home to Toronto after that etc. they can establish a plan of defense or offense against a player or team for the next 4- 7 games. I think this was part of New Jersey's success this last post season.
   18. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: October 14, 2012 at 09:58 PM (#4270381)
Maybe going on the road is just what this team needs. When uour "fans" spend the whole game sitting in silence or booing the crap out of you it doesnt provide much of an advantage.
   19. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:06 PM (#4270396)
Cano's performance is the one that is most inexcusable. He'd not old, he's not hurt, he was on a tear at the end of the regular seaso,

"On a tear" really understates it. Over that Yankees' last nine games, Cano hit .615/.628/1.026. He had at least two hits in each of the nine games, and finished the regular season on a 24-for-39 streak.


"Baseball players can hit anything in 40 PAs. Film at 11."
   20. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:07 PM (#4270401)
But no baseball player in the history of the postseason has ever had an 0-fer as long as Cano's current one.
   21. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4270410)
#20, who cares?
   22. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:17 PM (#4270428)
I imagine Yankee fans and Tiger fans care quite a bit.
   23. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4270440)
To your point, Ray, just about anyone can do just about anything in 40 ABs (I'll shorten it to Cano's current streak, which is 0-25). But lots of good, bad, and average hitters have had 25 ABs in the last hundred years of postseason baseball. None has done this and come up completely empty.
   24. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:20 PM (#4270445)
I imagine Yankee fans and Tiger fans care quite a bit.


Yes, but it's just a fluke, so there's no sense harping on it or trying to read too much into it. (Hello, ARod.)
   25. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:23 PM (#4270452)
Maybe going on the road is just what this team needs. When uour "fans" spend the whole game sitting in silence or booing the crap out of you it doesnt provide much of an advantage.

I don't know, take away that little league right field porch and they'd never score.
   26. Tom Nawrocki Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:24 PM (#4270454)
Ray, in all honesty, it surprises me that you follow baseball at all, since you seem to find it so uninteresting.
   27. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:31 PM (#4270468)
But there's nothing preventing them from getting to Verlander; he's not that good.

Desperate Yankee fan clutches at straws: Verlander's game scores against the Yanks this year are 73, 44, and 39. Of course that was when The Bambino wasn't on crutches and the rest of the team wasn't channeling Max Patkin, but ya gotta keep the old chin up and never get downhearted.
   28. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:32 PM (#4270470)
Ray, in all honesty, it surprises me that you follow baseball at all, since you seem to find it so uninteresting.

He enjoys it for all the stupid people he sees and gets to lord over.
   29. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:33 PM (#4270473)
Ray, in all honesty, it surprises me that you follow baseball at all, since you seem to find it so uninteresting.


I find it extremely interesting. What I don't find interesting is the silliness of ascribing character traits to players, labeling them heros or goats, based on what they do in a small sample of PAs or IP (ARod vs. Ibanez). Or the silliness of being confused or surprised that a player is 2-32 or whatever (Cano). This is baseball.
   30. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:40 PM (#4270492)
I don't know, take away that little league right field porch and they'd never score.


The way they're hitting right now? Verlander and Scherzer no-hit them consecutively and they go home. But this lineup can hit anywhere, and hit anyone, Jeter or no Jeter.
   31. PreservedFish Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:43 PM (#4270496)
I find it extremely interesting. What I don't find interesting is the silliness of ascribing character traits to players, labeling them heros or goats, based on what they do in a small sample of PAs or IP (ARod vs. Ibanez). Or the silliness of being confused or surprised that a player is 2-32 or whatever (Cano). This is baseball.


When something weird happens like Ibanez being the mega-clutch guy more than once, isn't that interesting and fun to watch? Your outlook on baseball, at least the way that you advertise it on this site, seems to be so aggressively logical that we wonder if you ever enjoy a game. Every game is just an amalgamation of small sample sizes. Every year is an amalgamation of small samples.

Everyone on this site is smart enough to know that Robinson Cano can hit .700 for one week and then .050 the next week, and know that it has nothing to do with his true talent level, his projection for tomorrow, or his manliness. But the difference in those two weeks is still interesting to watch, and it's worth talking about.
   32. The John Wetland Memorial Death (CoB) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:45 PM (#4270499)
How long before rumors of THE BIG FIX start spreading?


Hell, at this point, I think I'd actually be relieved to learn that entire team was on the take ...
   33. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:50 PM (#4270518)
If the Yanks can win Verlander's game they've got CC to try and even it up.

The Yanks certainly aren't worse off than they were going into Game 3 of the 1996 World Series, and that turned out pretty well. Not saying it'll be easy, but Verlander is 5-4 with a 3.74 ERA against the Yankees for his career. There is a game that can be won on Tuesday.
   34. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 10:50 PM (#4270519)
He enjoys it for all the stupid people he sees and gets to lord over.


No, but I confess I don't have a lot of patience for people who have been watching baseball for 10, 20, 50 years and still don't understand what they are seeing. Which includes most sportsrwiters, and several people who post here. Players do not choke in the postseason. They do not "rise" to the occasion. They play exactly the same in the postseason as in any small sample of PA or IP in the regular season. That people don't understand this is ridiculous. The insane postseason Bonds had should have clued people in to this, but it didn't. And it is particularly absurd as applied to ARod, a player who had an all-time great postseason in 2009, a postseason performance that should have erased any doubt people had in their minds as to whether he is a choker in the postseason, but instead these same people are back believing that he can't handle the pressure.

Even assuming arguendo there are a small number of players who might actually choke in the postseason, ARod can't be one of them.
   35. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: October 14, 2012 at 11:27 PM (#4270601)
People want to believe they are watching something more than just a series of dice rolls. Big deal, lighten up.

And sometimes they are. I thought it took a lot of something for the Tigers to hang in there last night, after Valverde they had to be pretty deflated. Every Braves team I ever followed would have folded the tent and gone home for the night.
   36. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 14, 2012 at 11:47 PM (#4270641)
People want to believe they are watching something more than just a series of dice rolls. Big deal, lighten up.


I want to believe in the Tooth Fairy. But I don't, because that would be silly.

And sometimes they are. I thought it took a lot of something for the Tigers to hang in there last night, after Valverde they had to be pretty deflated. Every Braves team I ever followed would have folded the tent and gone home for the night.


The fact that the Tigers didn't just fold the tent should have told you that major leaguers don't do that. Instead, you took the wrong lesson, and concluded that some major leaguers do but others don't.

Or, as Delmon Young said about the Yankees tying the game at 4-4, when the post-game interviewer asked him how the Tigers overcame that:

<scoff> "We're major leaguers. It's our job."
   37. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: October 14, 2012 at 11:53 PM (#4270650)
It's not like the Tigers are exactly crushing the baseball. If the Yanks can win Verlander's game they've got CC to try and even it up.


I've watched all seven of the Tigers games this postseason and they've got this Team of Destiny vibe to them right now. The pitching, Valverde meltdowns aside, has been very good, if not aided by two VERY aggressive teams in Oakland and New York. And the offense has been timely, but not particularly imposing. Cabrera and Fielder haven't exactly mashed, but it seems like the Tigers are catching a lot of breaks that eventual-WS winners rack up in October. They had one non-fluke run in the first three games of the Oakland series, and were aided by wild pitches and hit batters in the clincher. And then today, you had them getting their first run thanks to Cano's bobble and the other two following one of the shittier calls we've seen in this postseason.

But wins are wins, and right now, Detroit is getting them. Outside of last night's ninth inning, the Yankees have just looked like a totally defeated team in the first two games. The at-bats are just shockingly bad. Few hitter counts, piles of strikeouts, and weak contact when the ball gets put into play. Detroit pitching is good, but the Yankees are making them looking Johnson-Schilling right now.
   38. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:01 AM (#4270656)
The Yanks certainly aren't worse off than they were going into Game 3 of the 1996 World Series,

where's Jim Leyritz when you need him
   39. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:17 AM (#4270660)
I find it extremely interesting. What I don't find interesting is the silliness of ascribing character traits to players, labeling them heros or goats, based on what they do in a small sample of PAs or IP (ARod vs. Ibanez). Or the silliness of being confused or surprised that a player is 2-32 or whatever (Cano). This is baseball.

It's silly to apply any sort of moral character traits to players in a slump or on a hot streak. I'ts not silly to recognize that human beings can be conscious of slumps and overreact to their situation, and sometimes make matters worse for themselves.

Of course in the long run they'll level off and eventually return to their true talent level (at least until age or injuries catch up to them), but the idea that players are some sort of automatons who can't ever be adversely affected by negative emotions is the silliest idea of all.
   40. Don Malcolm Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:27 AM (#4270665)
Y'know guys, the more you try to push Ray on topics such as this one, the more he pushes back. You guys have all perfected your aim with the mallet--right under the knee, with just so much force... :-)

The Yanks have probably decided that they need to get down 0-3 and come stormin' back like those '04 Red Sox. It's one of the few things they haven't yet managed to do in their storied career, and this looks like their best shot at it. They'll need a rainout in there somewhere, however, to get CC an extra start.
   41. Ray (RDP) Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:29 AM (#4270666)
I'ts not silly to recognize that human beings can be conscious of slumps and overreact to their situation, and sometimes make matters worse for themselves.


Yes, it is.

Of course in the long run they'll level off and eventually return to their true talent level (at least until age or injuries catch up to them), but the idea that players are some sort of automatons who can't ever be adversely affected by negative emotions is the silliest idea of all.


Of course, you're the one treating them as automatons. "ARod is hitting badly and it's the postseason; so of course he's choking."
   42. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:46 AM (#4270670)
Of course, you're the one treating them as automatons. "ARod is hitting badly and it's the postseason; so of course he's choking."

Sorry, that doesn't make sense.
   43. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 12:50 AM (#4270671)
In Ray's world, robots are the ones with emotions.
   44. Dog on the sidewalk Posted: October 15, 2012 at 01:03 AM (#4270679)
I'ts not silly to recognize that human beings can be conscious of slumps and overreact to their situation, and sometimes make matters worse for themselves.


Yes, it is.


I was with you until this, Ray. I don't think that Cano's 0-25 means anything other than that he went 0-25 at a less than ideal time, or that A-Rod went from being a choker to being a clutch god to back to being a choker. I think trying to read anything into a postseason's worth of events is foolish.

That said, no matter how much of a professional one might be, no one is in a perfect state of mind at all times. To say that it's silly to think that a human being might get frustrated and respond to even short-term failure by altering their behavior (intentionally or not) in a way which may or may not actually be productive is an idea that strikes me as, well, silly. You can see this clearly enough in players like Knoblauch or Ankiel. I think it's as silly to pretend that such things can't happen in a less disastrous fashion to just about any player as it is to think that we can generally identify when it's happening over 1, or 20, or 100 at bats.
   45. Phil Coorey is a T-Shirt Salesman Posted: October 15, 2012 at 01:14 AM (#4270684)
I'm too scared to discuss anything with emotion around here anymore. I've certainly cut back on exclamation points and am trying really hard with profanity as well. It's a start I guess...
   46. Gaelan Posted: October 15, 2012 at 01:58 AM (#4270690)
No comments on the size of the strike zone. If the umpire is going to call everything a strike it's no surprise it's hard to hit.
   47. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: October 15, 2012 at 02:02 AM (#4270691)
No comments on the size of the strike zone. If the umpire is going to call everything a strike it's no surprise it's hard to hit.


Tigers pitching has been absolutely FEASTING on lefties in the first two series because they keep getting that outside "corner."
   48. RMc is a fine piece of cheese Posted: October 15, 2012 at 05:35 AM (#4270701)
Being down 0-2 going into the other guy's ballpark isn't fatal, as the Giants found out.
   49. Dr. Vaux Posted: October 15, 2012 at 05:51 AM (#4270705)
I expect the Tigers not to win another game this season.
   50. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 06:23 AM (#4270710)
though on record as supporting booing the booing of the yankee players does not fit the parameters of lack of effort or sloppy/stupid play

as hard as it is the fan needs to be supportive in this situation

separate note: granderson needs to sit. fella is lost
   51. TomH Posted: October 15, 2012 at 06:42 AM (#4270712)
CC will start game 7 if there is one.
   52. villageidiom Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:10 AM (#4270715)
I'ts not silly to recognize that human beings can be conscious of slumps and overreact to their situation, and sometimes make matters worse for themselves.

Yes, it is.
No, it isn't. It is not silly to recognize that humans sometimes overreact to their situation. It is silly to believe we can tell whether this is happening with a player or if he's just a victim of downside random variation in a small sample, simply on the basis of the results. It's a small sample, naturally obfuscating what a player really can do.
I'm too scared to discuss anything with emotion around here anymore. I've certainly cut back on exclamation points and am trying really hard with profanity as well. It's a start I guess...
So the girls have learned to read? ;-)
   53. Weekly Journalist Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:16 AM (#4270718)

separate note: granderson needs to sit. fella is lost


Not sure I agree with this. Although he's struggling, in a well pitched series like this I want guys in the lineup who can run into one. A solo homer like he hit in game 5 of the alds would have been a big deal in either of the first two games. Even a struggling Grando might crack one when you least expect it.
   54. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:24 AM (#4270721)
No, it isn't. It is not silly to recognize that humans sometimes overreact to their situation. It is silly to believe we can tell whether this is happening with a player or if he's just a victim of downside random variation in a small sample, simply on the basis of the results. It's a small sample, naturally obfuscating what a player really can do.
Yup. Which is why, when we don't have the data to make determinations, we need to use our observations.

-Robinson Cano and Nick Swisher will clearly be fine. They're putting in their at-bats, working the pitch count, they're not looking stupid against bad pitches. They're doing just fine. (Swisher seems a mess in the field, but that looks more like his typical problems of non-chalanting plays that require 100% effort rather than stress or worry.)
-Raul Ibanez is just a guy having a hot streak. It's really cool, or would be if he weren't a Yankee.
-Curtis Granderson, I'm not sure. I watched him down the stretch, since he was on my fantasy team, and I'm a little worried he's hurt. He looks just a bit slow at the plate, like his timing is off for some organic reason. That could just be a slump and perhaps some pressing on top of the slump, and I'd probably bet on him turning it around if it's 50/50 odds.
-Mark Teixeira appears to have declined in real talent since 2009, but he's hitting just like normal 2012 Mark Teixeira.
-Alex Rodriguez, like Granderson, actually looks bad up there. He can't get around on good fastballs, and he's guessing. He keeps guessing wrong. I expect he'll guess right eventually and get into one, but I don't expect ARod to contribute significantly to the Yankees this postseason. He's not right.
   55. Rants Mulliniks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:31 AM (#4270722)
I'm sure this has been mentioned at some point on one of these threads over the last couple of days, but I would love to meet Rick Sutcliffe in person so I can strangle him.

On a defensive shift (I'm paraphrasing). "See that hit by Texeireia? A bunch of geniuses decided that we need to shift infielders, but that would have been an easy out if the 2b had been in hist normal position".

On the milestone HR clauses in A-Rod's contract "Derek Jeter never would have asked for those".

What a pompous ass. I don't remember him being this bad before, but I've had to actually turn the channel a few times because I couldn't find the mute button on my remote quickly enough.

Its hard to imagine how its possible, but I really feel for ARod, millions and all. The amount of abuse that man takes is staggering.
   56. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:38 AM (#4270725)
No comments on the size of the strike zone. If the umpire is going to call everything a strike it's no surprise it's hard to hit.


Tigers pitching has been absolutely FEASTING on lefties in the first two series because they keep getting that outside "corner."

I haven't said much about the strike zone because I've almost been numbed by it, but from game 1 of the Yanks-O's DS right up through yesterday, this has been the worst called strike zone I've seen in my life. I wouldn't say it's just the Tigers pitchers who've benefited by it, though.

In fact it's been so bad, with about one borderline "strike" out of four showing up completely outside the zone, that I'm almost wondering if the TBS strike zone monitor is out of whack.** This AL postseason has been Exhibits A through J of the need to crack down on "personalized" strike zones and install a roboump to call the balls and strikes. The strike zone in these last two series*** has made me wonder whether I fell into a time machine that's been set at 1968.

**Except that it hasn't just been on the corners or at the bottom of the zone, it's been everywhere. In one of Jeter's last appearances before he crashed, the first pitch was right down the middle, nearly halfway between the midpoint and the top of the zone. Ball one. The next pitch showed a gap of a good ball width below the bottom of the zone. Strike one. But I guess that hitters are supposed to be able to "adjust" to that.

***Can't comment on the Tigers-A's series, since I didn't watch much of that one.
   57. DKDC Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:39 AM (#4270726)
Treating each plate appearance as a discrete event where the pitcher and hitter have a certain chance of producing certain outcomes based on some "true talent" has proven to be a good model of baseball events over the long term. But it's a terrible oversimplification of what is happening each time a batter steps to the plate.

In the real world, it's actually a series of pitches thrown by a pitcher who will has a plan of attack to try to get the hitter out. The pitcher may have better control of certain pitches on a certain day or inning and that may alter his approach. The batter has a strategy too. He may be guessing, or sitting on a particular pitch, or trying to read a giveaway in the pitchers motion. The batter may feel weak or tired or be injured in some way or be in a mental state that is making it more difficult to focus on each pitch fully. If the batter doesn't swing, the balls and strikes are called by a human umpire who could be experiencing any or all of the same mental or physical ailments or could just hold a grudge against a particular player.

That is what baseball is, and no matter how good our projections are, they will simply be just a model of the batter's chances on a certain pitch thrown by a certain pitcher in a certain ballpark in a certain inning on a certain day.

There is obviously a huge amount of randomness that players and managers and announcers and sportswriters and fans may wrongly identify as meaningful, but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist.
   58. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:49 AM (#4270728)
What a pompous ass. I don't remember him being this bad before, but I've had to actually turn the channel a few times because I couldn't find the mute button on my remote quickly enough.
He's really this bad, and he's only getting worse.

The crazy thing is that the TBS television crew is providing probably the best playoff announcing of the last decade. It's a low bar, admittedly, but they're crossing it with ease. Johnson is a professional with a good voice, Smoltz and Darling both have a lot of good stuff to say, the group has good chemistry (probably greatly due to Johnson's work), and they remain focused on the game on the field.

Replacing them with Sutcliffe is arguably an act of war against the nation of Canada.
   59. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:52 AM (#4270732)
In fact it's been so bad, with about one borderline "strike" out of four showing up completely outside the zone, that I'm almost wondering if the TBS strike zone monitor is out of whack.**
TBS's zone graphic is significantly skinnier than the zones used by AtBat and BrooksBaseball and the rest. It's the same underlying data, but TBS' graphic cuts off areas that are displayed on the outside or inside corners in other graphics. On the balls that appear just off the plate on TBS, they're considered borderline in most strike zone graphics.

I really haven't seen a problem with the strike zone this playoffs. There are missed calls, especially on breaking balls that drop through the zone and are caught below the knees, but the rate has been pretty normal. There haven't been any egregiously shifting zones, and I only saw one ludicrously wide zone (Joyce) and I haven't seen any ludicrously short zones (the high strike has been mostly well called).
   60. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2012 at 07:57 AM (#4270733)
In fact it's been so bad, with about one borderline "strike" out of four showing up completely outside the zone, that I'm almost wondering if the TBS strike zone monitor is out of whack.**

TBS's zone graphic is significantly skinnier than the zones used by AtBat and BrooksBaseball and the rest. It's the same underlying data, but TBS' graphic cuts off areas that are displayed on the outside or inside corners in other graphics. On the balls that appear just off the plate on TBS, they're considered borderline in most strike zone graphics.


That makes me feel a bit better, but how does one know which networks use which zones? Since this isn't the sort of thing that's normally on one's checklist of things to listen for, is there a place where they list this sort of information?
   61. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:05 AM (#4270737)
That makes me feel a bit better, but how does one know which networks use which zones?
It's just the graphic. Everyone gets the same pitch locations, and then the network chooses the display, the background zone against which it will be projected. Just open up a GameDay window to compare.
   62. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:39 AM (#4270745)
Yes, it is.

Ray, have you ever played competitive sports? I have. The moment impacts your mind. Some people are too dumb to understand the moment and some people can overcome the nerves, but if you don't think nerves are there even for pro athletes, you've got no clue what you're talking about.

The idea that the set of pro athletes is a group that has had that process self-selected away is foolish.
   63. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:44 AM (#4270747)
Yup. Which is why, when we don't have the data to make determinations, we need to use our observations.

The critical observation is that most elite athletes understand the moment and it impacts their state of mind and nervousness. Practically all of them admit it, though perhaps not in baseball. Golfers do. Read what they say.
   64. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:44 AM (#4270748)
The idea that the set of pro athletes is a group that has had that process self-selected away is foolish.
They have had that process selected away, to a significant degree. If you are affected very badly by pressure, by previous failure, by "the moment", you're not going to get through the minors. This isn't to say that ballplayers are as such automatons - I thin DKDC articulated well the realia of baseball, and "less affected" by pressure isn't "not affected" - but we shouldn't assume they're just like us in respect to pressure and the mental game. They're most of them freaks.
   65. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:45 AM (#4270749)
If you are affected badly by pressure, by previous failure, by "the moment", you're not going to get through the minors.

There's no pressure in the minors comparable to a major league postseason. There are no "moments" in the minors.(*) You can't replicate the conditions of a Super Bowl or a three-foot putt on 18 to win the Masters, or a big at-bat in a major league postseason game. It can't be done.

This is one of those over-intellectualized observations that smart baseball watchers come up with, but it has little basis in reality.

(*) And no way for things that seem like "moments" to weed people out. You think Profar is going to be "weeded out" if he goes 1-14 in the Sally League playoffs?
   66. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:47 AM (#4270753)
There's no pressure in the minors comparable to a major league postseason.
I think "will I be able to support my family by playing baseball" is in many ways a higher level of pressure than a championship on the line.

But regardless, I'm not saying that every plate appearance is a perfectly discrete event governed by probabilities. I'm saying that we should be careful of attributing characteristics we recognize in ourselves fully to baseball players. They are different from you and me.
   67. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 08:51 AM (#4270756)
But regardless, I'm not saying that every plate appearance is a perfectly discrete event governed by probabilities. I'm saying that we should be careful of attributing characteristics we recognize in ourselves fully to baseball players. They are different from you and me.

Read what pro golfers say. I guess it's against code for MLBers to tell reporters they feel the moment, but pro golfers have no such reluctance.

The guys on the PGA Tour aren't there instead of me because they're better at dealing with pressure; they're there because they're better players.

Similarly, A-Rod isn't a major league star because of the way he deals with pressure; he's there because he's a phenomenal baseball player.
   68. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:04 AM (#4270760)
The guys on the PGA Tour aren't there instead of me because they're better at dealing with pressure; they're there because they're better players.
Being better at dealing with pressure is part of being a better player. If you crack under pressure, you're going to be worse at playing baseball overall.
   69. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:13 AM (#4270763)
You can't replicate 1st and third, down a run, 7th inning in the baseball post-season; you can't replicate being on the 18th tee up a shot; you can't replicate being ad up, 2nd serve, up 5-4 in the third; you can't replicate being at the free throw line with a one-and-one down one with 3 seconds to go.

Can't be done. Those moments impact even elite athletes and dramatically affect their performance.(*)

Those moments are so infrequent as to be useless in weeding people out. You can suck in the postseason and still be a useful, indeed very good, player, as several Yankees are showing.

(*) There likely are players who feel pressure in spots other than those, but in baseball, the effect gets swallowed up by aggregation.
   70. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:17 AM (#4270766)
sugar

there are numerous stories of pga players who could still make a comfortable living on the tour but could no longer win because they got the 'yips' while putting on the final day of a tournament. one of the more famous examples is tom watson.

just saying.....
   71. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:19 AM (#4270767)
Darling has shown a love of guessing at the future, and he's been dramatically wrong every time. I agree that this announcing team is a good one, but when Jeter broke himself, Darling said, "He's fine; he's on the ground because he's mad about missing the play!" Even live, I could tell something was really wrong with Jeter.

And he'll call upcoming pitches, and the safest place in the world to be is in the quadrant of the strike zone in which he thinks the pitcher is going to aim next. He does it about once an inning, and I don't think he's been right yet.
   72. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:24 AM (#4270769)
there are numerous stories of pga players who could still make a comfortable living on the tour but could no longer win because they got the 'yips' while putting on the final day of a tournament. one of the more famous examples is tom watson.

There are a bunch of those guys. Still very good, just not as good as they could be but for the nerves.

Golf is a very similar sport to baseball, and it's certain there are baseball players making big money in the major leagues who get the yips. And whose swing gets a bit out of whack, particularly under pressure, and it takes them forever to get it back. By the time forever passes in baseball, the postseason is over.
   73. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:30 AM (#4270774)
Tiger Woods's once 10-WAR mental game has deteriorated to barely above replacement level.
   74. GregD Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:36 AM (#4270777)
there are numerous stories of pga players who could still make a comfortable living on the tour but could no longer win because they got the 'yips' while putting on the final day of a tournament. one of the more famous examples is tom watson.
The Watson who won 8 majors, beating runner-up Nicklaus 4 times and winning a playoff another time, and 39 PGA tour events? The one who is 6th all-time in majors wins, one spot ahead of Arnold Palmer?

Tom Watson was supposed to be Nicklaus' successor but Nicklaus kept on winning. There were a lot of theories invented to explain that fact, but they come down to the fact that Nicklaus is one of the 2-3 greatest golfers ever, probably the greatest golfer ever, and Watson was one of the 10 greatest golfers ever. You don't need a lot of bullshit psychoanalysis beyond that. It's like saying Tom Glavine wasn't as good as Greg Maddux because he was afraid of spiders. Tom Glavine wasn't as good as Greg Maddux cause almost nobody is as good as Greg Maddux; it doesn't demand explanation.
   75. ASmitty Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:37 AM (#4270778)
Johnson is a professional with a good voice, Smoltz and Darling both have a lot of good stuff to say, the group has good chemistry (probably greatly due to Johnson's work), and they remain focused on the game on the field.


If Ernie Johnson can keep Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith on topic, handling Smoltz and Darling should be a breeze.

I think Smoltz could be really, really good with experience but he doesn't do a ton of games and is always in a three man booth.
   76. My name is Votto, and I love to get blotto Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:39 AM (#4270779)
I was thinking about this with regards to Greg Norman, who blew a big lead in the 1996 Masters, and pretty much did nothing for the rest of his career. He was 41 at the time. Golf fans, is there any general agreement in when golfers are in/past their prime? It doesn't require the physical strength or stamina of tennis or any of the team sports.
   77. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:41 AM (#4270780)
gregd

please look up tom watson. watson is well known around the tour for having developed putting issues. john feinstein wrote about it in one of his books on golf

i did not make this up or pull it out of thin air. tom watson has spoken about this and how it affected his career.

   78. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:42 AM (#4270781)
post 76

early 40's is considered the end of the career bell curve

   79. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:47 AM (#4270785)
It's like saying Tom Glavine wasn't as good as Greg Maddux because he was afraid of spiders. Tom Glavine wasn't as good as Greg Maddux cause almost nobody is as good as Greg Maddux; it doesn't demand explanation.

It's literally nothing like Glavine, Maddux, and spiders. Watson lost the ability to make short putts at a relatively early age and it kept him from winning as much as he would have. He was only 34 when he won his last major.

As Harvey noted, Watson freely acknowledges this. Golfers have no compunction in doing this; baseball players do.
   80. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:49 AM (#4270789)
The idea that the set of pro athletes is a group that has had that process self-selected away is foolish.


They have had that process selected away, to a significant degree. If you are affected very badly by pressure, by previous failure, by "the moment", you're not going to get through the minors. This isn't to say that ballplayers are as such automatons - I thin DKDC articulated well the realia of baseball, and "less affected" by pressure isn't "not affected" - but we shouldn't assume they're just like us in respect to pressure and the mental game. They're most of them freaks.

This is the best answer yet to the "choke"** accusation, but all it means is that most Major Leaguers are better at blocking out environmental factors than most players who never make it to The Show. It doesn't mean that all Major Leaguers can always block out these environmental factors, it just means that they're more likely than not to keep their composure in pressure-packed moments.

**Meaning underperformance due in part to felt mental stress, not any underlying "character" issue. Part of the problem is so many of these discussions is the conflation of stress issues with "character" issues, when one has nothing to do with the other.
   81. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:52 AM (#4270793)
As Harvey noted, Watson freely acknowledges this. Golfers have no compunction in doing this; baseball players do.

And before Watson, there was Arnold Palmer, whose legendary failures in his putting game after he won his last Major practically made "the yips" a household expression all by itself.
   82. Greg K Posted: October 15, 2012 at 09:54 AM (#4270795)
That makes me feel a bit better, but how does one know which networks use which zones? Since this isn't the sort of thing that's normally on one's checklist of things to listen for, is there a place where they list this sort of information?

I find it best to just ignore the pitch zone thing when I'm watching a game. The TBS one was clearly skinnier from the get-go and I like to think I've seen enough baseball games to know when I should be outraged by a call based on live-action and replays. It's useful information to have when following online, but I don't see the point for a game where I can see the pitch.

   83. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:01 AM (#4270801)
Watson's long game was good enough for him to be a hole away from winning a major at 59 (!). After getting screwed by the hard green on his approach to the 72nd, he had that 9-footer uphill to win and everyone who knew anything about golf knew he had no chance.(*) Ninety-five percent plus of 10-handicap players would have hit a better putt there than Watson, who yipped it short and wide right in one of the more deflating sports moments of the 21st century.

(*) Take the serene and knowing confidence Tiger fans had when A-Rod was up against Valverde with 2 outs in the 9th inning of Game 5 2011 ALDS. Multiply it by 100. That's how unlikely Watson was to make that putt.
   84. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:03 AM (#4270805)
I've had this argument with Ray before, and cited Knoblauch and Ankiel and friends as the most obvious cases of guys who let emotions affect their play. I don't believe it makes sense to say that major league players have been self-selected to totally eliminate chokers. The draft focuses on skills, not performance, and the international amateur market focuses exclusively on skills. You never hear a damn word about how clutch a minor leaguer is.

Keeping one's cool under pressure is a skill, it's a real skill that people see in real life all the time. I'm a chef and it's a critical skill in our business and certainly one that people do not share equally.

There is no skill on earth that all major league players have equally. None. They vary in size, speed, eyesight, intelligence, etc. So I think that it's profoundly illogical to say that all major leaguers share the exact same level of "clutchness."

I will agree that the development process probably weeds out most of the nervous Nellies, and that perhaps the average major leaguer is just as superior in this skill as he is in his athletic skills. But it's still a skill that some players will have more than others.

The problem is that, because of the nature of the game, it's virtually impossible to determine how the players differ in this skill. You need thousands of ABs in the clutch, and we never get them, and even if we did there are the arguments about how to define clutch, define performance, etc. And I agree that short of something outrageous happening (like Ankiel) it is always best to assume that remarkably good or bad clutch performance is just a sample size fluke.
   85. ASmitty Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:08 AM (#4270810)
I'm not sure I believe in clutch. I'm quite certain I believe in anti-clutch.
   86. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:10 AM (#4270813)
Part of the problem with the choke label is that it's not just limited to the post-season. Of course, that's where we are now, so it's being discussed. As SBB says, you can't simulate the World Series. But "choke" is applied to all sorts of situations in baseball as post-hoc analysis. Ryan Madson and Fernando Rodney were labeled as guys who couldn't handle the 9th based on SSS. However, it's easy enough once they succeed to say that they learned something or matured or whatever. Like Andy said, most MLB players probably aren't affected by pressure too much. Some are, but the number that are labeled chokers has to be way higher than the actual number.

Also, don't forget that whenever a veteran team succeeds in the playoffs, their experience is mentioned. Whenever a young team succeeds, it's because the don't know enough to be nervous.
   87. chemdoc Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:15 AM (#4270818)
Tiger fans have never experienced serene and knowing confidence when Valverde is on the mound--not even in 2011.
   88. willcarrolldoesnotsuk Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:26 AM (#4270824)
Cano's performance is the one that is most inexcusable. He'd not old, he's not hurt, he was on a tear at the end of the regular seaso, and now he looks like the honey badger up there.
Am I misunderstanding the honey badger reference here? Is it intended to mean (based on the popular meme) that Cano looks like he "doesn't give a ####\", as in "doesn't give a #### whether he or his team does well or poorly"?

If so, that's pretty much the opposite of the meaning of the meme. The meme's "honey badger doesn't give a ####\" means that the honey badger doesn't give a #### about you. If you get in the way of the honey badger doing whatever awesome thing the honey badger wants to do, the honey badger will kick your ass, steamroll right through you, and go on to doing the next awesome thing that he wants to do without giving you so much as a second thought. If any Yankee is currently the honey badger, it's Raul Ibanez, not Robinson Cano.

Here is the honey badger not giving a ####.
   89. GregD Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:27 AM (#4270826)
Watson won 8 majors and came in second 8 times. Third twice. Fourth 3 times. Fifth 4 times. Sixth 3 times. That doesn't look like the record of someone who could not close.

I remember his reputation, and I have never doubted the power of narratives to obscure reality, even to the participants. But no matter how common the conventional wisdom was, it doesn't match his record. If you take the presumption that you have to explain all of Watson's losses and none of his wins, then you can invent all kinds of explanations about his 8 second-place finishes. But that's not an accurate assumption. His 8--8!--victories in majors count toward his record, too, and have to be explained if you are trying to argue that a major part of his golfing career is explained by an inability to close out.
   90. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:30 AM (#4270828)
I'm not sure I believe in clutch. I'm quite certain I believe in anti-clutch.


I believe in both, but the problem is that clutch and anti-clutch have different potentials to affect the game and be noticed. Let's suppose Joe Randa is phenomenally clutch. He's a "true talent" .290/.340/.440 hitter. What's he going to hit in the clutch situations? The theoretical top level is a homerun every time, but no human is capable of that. Maybe his clutch true talent is .320/.370/.480 ... that's not enough to notice through the noise, and indeed given those constant true talent levels he might even hit worse in the clutch over a few hundred ABs. (Also we have all those other issues ... maybe Joe Randa only feels extra pressure when his dad is in the stands, or something)

But let's suppose he's phenomenally anti-clutch. The theoretical bottom is a strikeout every time. That is something that everyone is capable of.
   91. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:35 AM (#4270836)
gregd

i offered up tom watson as an example of a guy who had the spirit to do the job but by all accounts, including the player himself, his hands would not cooperate. his hands would shake. he would begin sweating. he incorporated every approach available to try and generate the calm he had experienced previously in winning his 8 majors. he was unable, for whatever reason, to get to that 'place'. so despite improving his tee to green game in his late 30's he never won another major after age 34.

and again, the player himself pointed to this problem

if you are going to argue with someone that this is incorrect then argue with tom watson himself because he has discussed it ad nauseum for now what is almost 30 years. but be warned tom has a a temper so if you get a nine iron aside the head when you tell tom he doesn't know that he is misinterpreting his reality don't say you weren't warned.
   92. bigglou115 Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:39 AM (#4270841)
I'd just like to take this moment to express my irritation that history is apparently going to make this about the Yanks not having Jeter, which will only increase his legend.
   93. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:44 AM (#4270845)
bigg

don't know. for some weird reason i am thinking of the submarine in the hunt for red october that has a reactor incident and just as the sub looks like it will make it the captain is struck on the head and knocked out so the sub team is leaderless and a dire situation becomes hopeless

the yanks are that team. losing their 'captain' just took their chances from something really low to nil

at least if if they keep not hitting.
   94. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:48 AM (#4270849)
the yanks are that team. losing their 'captain' just took their chances from something really low to nil

Oh, baseball is a funny game. I wouldn't be surprised in the least to see an unexpected hero emerge and lead the Yankees forth. Or, not even that. They might just win the rest of the games pretty easily.
   95. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:52 AM (#4270852)
pf

which is why i wrote if they keep not hitting. it's really hard to win and not score

unless they changed the rules to help the yanks out and nobody told us.

which is also not out of the realm of possibility

ha, ha.
   96. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:54 AM (#4270857)
it's really hard to win and not score

Can't disagree with that.
   97. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:56 AM (#4270862)
pf

you may have just lost your bbtf decoder ring. a true bbtfer argues anything
   98. PreservedFish Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:58 AM (#4270865)
I like agreeing with people. I'm just a contrarian like that.
   99. bigglou115 Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:58 AM (#4270866)
93. Maybe, but I think it's more likely that 2 storylines will be remembered. Jeter got hurt and the Yankees 'choked' and nevermind the difference between correlation and causation.

I'm actually of the mind that this kind of thinking diminishes Jeter. He's had a HOF career, but every time he gets adulation for things that have nothing to do with how good a player he is it forces the Jeter v stat guys debate and takes away from how good a ball player he has been. For all the love Chipper got this year when all is said and done Jeter will probably be within the margin of error of Chipper's WAR total. It's silly that arguments against his greatness have to be made but when someone calls him 'the best Yankee ever' somebody is going to argue against that obvious untruth.
   100. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: October 15, 2012 at 10:58 AM (#4270867)
you may have just lost your bbtf decoder ring. a true bbtfer argues anything

No he doesn't.
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