Sunday, February 25, 2018

BOONE MAKES A STARTLING REVELATION

Source:  ANDREW SAVULICH/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Let me start this Sunday morning by prefacing that I am skeptical of Aaron Boone's ability to lead.  I believe that this year's pennant is ours to lose, meaning, we truly have the potential of coming out on top by the time the 2018 season closes this fall.  I believe that if we are not able to close the deal in October, it is not about how we perform on the field per say, it is how well our manager performs his job duties.  

Source: Jonathan Dyer | USA TODAY Sports

After our piece last week entitled CLUBHOUSE CULTURE: IT MEANS EVERYTHING,  I received a number of inquiries about why there were no pictures of Boone managing in the piece and how come I didn't report Boone's vision like I did the other new managers featured in the report: both Mets manager Mickey Callaway (former Cleveland Indians pitching coach) and Phillies manager Gabe Kapler (former Director of Player Development for the Los Angeles Dodgers).  The answer:  I didn't have any pictures of Boone on the field, managing and I didn't have any vision quotes to insert.  A week and couple of games in, I now have something to report, and despite this piece's headline, I don't think it's earth shattering.

Source: Kim Klement | USA TODAY Sports

 "I want us to be obsessed with controlling the strike zone. That's one of my bumper stickers, if you will," stated Boone as reported by NJ.com.  Obsessed with controlling the strike zone? That's his bumper sticker?  I understand that players need to be patient at the plate particularly our powerhouse sluggers, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, who are no strangers to strikeouts with Judge striking out 208 times (a rookie record) and Stanton whiffing 163 times (tied for 17th in the league).  But what is your vision, Boone?  Can we put whatever that is on a bumper sticker?

Source: MLB.com

I say all of this because I am concerned.  I am concerned because Boone has no experience coaching.  Both Callaway and Kapler have incredible resumes and previous experiences leading players.  Boone, not so much.  Now to be fair, last week, Boone did share some hopes and dreams, which could be equated to a vision of sorts.

Source: Sweeny Murti/WFAN

“I want to be somebody that is known as a smart manager that makes smart decisions, that’s prepared,” Boone said. “But also, one that when you walk into our clubhouse, hopefully I’m a part of what I believe is a winning culture — a culture where guys are at ease, where guys are allowed to be themselves, where when you walk into our room, it’s not a stressful place; it’s a place where guys are at work and enjoy coming there to do their job, and hopefully I’m part of creating that atmosphere,” reported CBS Sports.

Source: SI Live

He offers a lot of hope in his statement but hope is just not enough. What are you going to do, Aaron? The Yankee administration chose Boone because of his baseball acuity and his personality.  But as many have said including John Harper of the New York Daily News, if "Boone has the personality to let criticism roll off his back, (that's half of the battle of managing in New York). That stuff seemed to eat at Girardi at times, adding to the tension he created for people around him with his grinding intensity." 

Source: NJ.com

I HOPE that Boone's bumper sticker vision evolves into something more than "hope" and "I want to be" and strike zone strategies.  Perhaps this will all become clearer as Boone gets more games under his belt.  He needs spring training to iron out his wrinkles just as the players need it to ready themselves.  April will be here soon enough and as excited as I am for opening day, I worry that our new manager is too green.  We have a lot of potential to win this year, folks.  But when it comes to management in the clubhouse, we are definitely going to need Boone to step it up and back up his hopes and dreams with some actions.



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof





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Saturday, February 24, 2018

BEING A YANKEE? BETTER THAN BEING A MARLIN!

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Giancarlo Stanton loves being a New York Yankee so much better than being in Miami. I feel bad for the Marlins fans when I hear that. But I know it's really nothing personal against them.  It's just the organization itself that went stale.

For Stanton... it's the fan atmosphere that he is in love with.  After all... Yankee fans are the best fans in the world.

Bryan Hoch writes:

Credit Lynne Sladky/Associated Press
"'It was fun, a lot of fun,' said Stanton, who batted second and played right field....'How'd it compare? This is better,' Stanton said. 'Just more exciting, I'd say. More excitement. More can't wait, happy for spring -- it's a spring game, but [people] can't wait to see what we can do. That's what would be the difference.'"

And there's more. Stanton gets mad respect from guys like Miguel Cabrera...


'I think he's going to have a great year,' Cabrera said. 'Like I say to every hitter going from the National League to the American League, you're going to hit more here than the National League, because this league is about more hitting. We have good pitchers, great pitchers in the American League, but you're going to face a ninth hitter.'"

Look... Stanton didn't look very good in his Yankee debut yesterday. No one cares. Yesterday was about first time, life action and working out the kinks, timing, all of that.  Things will get better and things will get exciting.

Hell... it's just good to know that he feels comfortable with the best fans in the world. With that in mind... the dude will do great in New York.

Very Exciting!


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WHERE WILL MOUSTAKAS LAND? WE KNOW

Source: Jamie Squire/Getty Images North America
Let's not forget...Spring Training games have started, and Mike Moustakas is still not on a team. Is he home? Is he just watching MLB Network and wondering? What's his agent doing? This is a nice player to pick up, but I think now the dude has to be realistic... don't you?

Jon Heyman has this. He thinks with the Braves of the White Sox:

Source: Brian Davidson/Getty Images North America
Braves:
"The Braves have talked about Mike Moustakas, but so far there's no common ground."

White Sox:
"Mike Moustakas could emerge as a possibility, Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported. The White Sox have as many prospects as any AL team but don't have a big one at third base. While this would be a year before any expected push for a pennant, it may represent a nice opportunity for the ChiSox. The third base market hasn't developed as expected, and Moustakas may not get what he originally sought. There are plenty of one-year opportunities for him, but a one-year deal would put him back on the market with Josh Donaldson and Manny Machado."


Source: Jon Durr/Getty Images North America
But let's not forget BYB phantom genius Douglas Solomon wrote I KNOW WHERE MIKE MOUSTAKAS IS GOING a while back.

"Here's my prediction... the Orioles still pop in my mind. They can easily put him at 3rd and put Machado at short and then they have a replacement for Machado, who is obviously leaving in free agency."

He also wrote this about the Braves and White Sox:

"--Chicago White Sox: The youth movement is happening. They are unlikely to make a big money signing while they are rebuilding.

--Atlanta Braves: Youth movement – not spending money on big free agents "

In the end, Douglas picks the Orioles.

I'm sticking with Solomon.  This is a test.  Let's see who will be right.


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JESSE BARFIELD HAS A CAT ON HIS HEAD


I just saw this and had to share it.  We all loved Jesse Barfield when he was with the New York Yankees.  I know I did.  Well... if you didn't know, Barfield's on Twitter and the dude is pretty active.

He posts everything from congratulating former players to talking about great memories playing in Toronto and in New York. 


It's actually pretty cool to watch him walk down memory lane.  Kind of fun for any fan too.

But what the hell is this??

I burst out laughing. More importantly, is it real? Fake? I don't know what the hell's going on here.  I did alittle more research and came across this:

Turns out @MBarfielddesign looks to be Jesse's wife maybe? And designing funny things on Barfield is a thing.  I love it!

Anyway... I just had to share.  Happy Saturday for us all.  Thanks for the humor, Jesse. You made my Saturday.


Friday, February 23, 2018

THE NICEST DAY OF THE YEAR!


Photo: Kim Klement / USA Today Sports
The Yankees win in their first Spring Training game.  That's the least of it but still great.

As a baseball fan, it's just great to see our New York Yankees take the field today.  It was great to see baseball in live action on YES Network today.  It was great to see Giancarlo Stanton in pinstripes. 

Photo: Pete Caldera Tweet
Pete Caldera of the Bergen Record had the best Tweet to complete our day as Yankee fans...
And that's it!  This is the "working-out-the-kinks" portion of our New York Yankees. 

(AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
Couple that with what we heard from people like Kenny Singleton, read HERE
in this morning's BYB post, and the excitement we feel and even appreciate has been officially established for 2018!
When you see a guy like Nick Swisher who's out there as a Yankee special assistant chatting it up with the Yanks the last few days... there is this undeniable feeling of hope and energy we haven't seen with this team since 1996... we're BACK!


Bottom line, today felt good. No... it felt great.  We need it as Yankee fans and you know what? The Yankees haven't won it all since 2009.  That, my friends is a drought.  We are ready for a championship. 

Photo: Brandon Drury / New York Daily News
Cashman did some great things this off season.  We are a great group of hardworking players and the most important part of it? They are talented and YOUNG.

Very, very exciting.  

I leave you with this; I love what MLB did about today's game.  All players in baseball were required to wear SD caps in honor of the fallen in that terrible shooting at that Parkland Florida High School... Stoneman Douglas.

 
Class act.  Loved it. I want to order my own. I hope the proceeds go to those families.

We need more kindness in this world.  I approve 100%, Rob Manfred.




KENNY SINGLETON SEES BIG THINGS FOR THE YANKEES FUTURE

Look out!

Photo: Getty Images
I love when Ken Singleton speaks! When he does, I listen.  Don't forget, BYB interviewed him a while back because we love the guy.  (Read EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: KEN SINGLETON for that).

Photo: NY Post
Anyway... he had this to say about the Yankees future.  In a nutshell... it looks bright. This is brought to us by the New York Post:

"'In my own personal experience through the years, teams that come very close the year before, they are very determined the following season and very tough to deal with,' Singleton said of the Yankees, who lost to the Astros in Game 7 of the ALCS. 'In ’83 we had more injuries and more problems to deal with, but we won the World Series because we were more determined. I think that can apply to the Yankees.


When you talk to these guys in the dugout, they all reference that if they don’t win it there’s going to be huge disappointment. They are already pointing toward that, and that’s the way it should be.'...


'The Yankees sense they have the type of team now that was like the late ’90s,' Singleton said. 'They have a sense they have this kind of ball club again, and if everything goes right, they can challenge for a title every year.'”

Photo: Baltimore Sun
Singleton referenced 1983.  Just to put that in context, he was with the Orioles, and that year, they won the Championship.

I love what I hear from Kenny.  It's a smart analyst giving solid perspective, plus, it gets me excited.


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