Category Archives: 2012 Season

Yankees 2012 Season

Baseball is just Baseball: The Understated Ichiro [book review]

I usually post by book reviews on on my other site, but Baseball is just Baseball:  The Understated Ichiro seems like it belongs here.

Before I get into this, here are a few things I think you should know up front:

  1. You know what Yogi-isms are, right?  Well, this is a book of Ichiro-isms.
  2. Essentially, this is a really small coffee table book – it’s not a biography or anything like that.  You’re not going to learn about his childhood in here.
  3. Although Ichiro is wearing a Yankee uniform on the front cover, the back cover and in every picture inside the book, all of the quotes are from 2001.

It’s selling like hot cakes on Amazon – as of this writing, there are only 19 copies left, which I am totally shocked by.  I keep underestimating Ichiro.  The guy can still play, and I forget how famous he is.   It’s also available on Kindle, so hard copies aren’t the only avenue to pursue.  Here’s a few highlights via slide show:

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Here are some additional Ichiro quotes:

Experience reality rather than your expectation of reality.

Believe in yourself.

Don’t take yourself seriously, but find an activity to be passionate about and take that activity very seriously.

Don’t buy the hype.

Dissolve hate into love.

Care more about the process than the product.

Find joy in the seeking itself.

The guy doesn’t just have great bat control – he’s got great inner self control, too.

If you love Ichiro, you need this book.  It’s not the most comprehensive guide into his mind, but it’s a snap shot of how he thinks.  “Failure is the mother of success” is actually quite profound, but when asked why he didn’t slide when stealing third, he answered “I didn’t think he would throw,” and that’s this book in a nutshell.  Ichiro isn’t going to give you any complex explanations; if you tell him there’s a fire, he’s not going to give you point by point directions, he’s going to tell you, “Put it out.”  From a more baseball perspective, someone asked him about a tough catch and he responded that he made the catch because the ball was hit to him.  He’s not interested in over-complicating things, and that’s what you get here, cover to cover.

It’s a real shame there aren’t any new quotes here and it’s a bit misleading that he’s wearing a Yankee uniform in every photo, but this is still worth a look for Ichiro fans and philosophy fans alike.

Season Over

That’s one way to end a season.

Only so much fooling around can be tolerated!

Alex Rodriguez continues to invoke ire from the western world.  His latest infraction:  attempting to pick up chicks via ball boy communication while he was benched during the ALCS.

Just to recap for anyone who needs a refresher, behavior for baseball players during games goes as follows:


Mattingly: “It’s important for me to get as much grease on my hand as possible before I go out into the field.”


A-Rod: “Hm, she’s hot. I wonder if she’ll sleep with me after the game? Only one way to find out… Ball Boy!”

Remember, 2 MVPs and 1 World Series title count for NOTHING when you’re benched for lack of production!  (Don Mattingly is beloved by Yankee fans because…  he gave us something to watch while the rest of the team stunk?  I guess…)  This should CLEARLY be the focus of the press as the Yankees face elimination in the ALCS.


Just to be clear:  not saying A-Rod’s focus should be on chicks, but the best player on the team (Robinson Cano) hasn’t had a hit since Game 2 of the ALDS.  Seems like a bigger story.

ALCS Game 4 will be today at 4 est?


Is MLB kidding?  They rescheduled an 8 pm night game to a 4 pm day game?  Can you imagine what people who have tickets to this game are thinking?  I guess I could buy the $5 thing from MLB, but right now, I’m too pissed off.

ALCS 2012: Can I get a replay?

I know I’ve been giving Robinson Cano a hard time since the playoffs began, but the umpires seem to really hate him this post season.


Cano safe at first


How in the hell did Jeff Nelson miss this call?

Whew – those are some terrible calls, and Cano was involved in both them.  Coincidence?  Perhaps.  More to the point, I love that MLB moved aggressively to add the second wild card team but just can’t seem to adapt instant replay, which is even funnier because they moved fast on something they should have moved slowly on and they can’t seem to move fast enough on something with the word ‘instant’ in it’s name.  It boggles the mind.  They have the tools, they have the technology… but they’ll be fucked if they’re going to use it.

Better get your last looks at Nick Swisher in pinstripes

The Yankees might only have two games left this season… So Nick Swisher fans, be aware: On October 15, Mike Axisa of River Ave Blues wrote, "I’ll be stunned if the Yankees do not re-sign Ichiro Suzuki to replace Swisher next year." I was thinking the same thing.

I tend to agree that this will happen and with this as a move the Yankees should make. There was little chance the Yankees were going to resign Swisher anyway because of their 2014 reduced payroll plan and the big dollars Swisher is likely to command – couple those nuggets with the fact that Swisher has been a dud in all four post seasons he’s played with the Yankees (Swisher’s lifetime quad slash in the post season is .167/.284/.300/.584) and that Ichiro looks to be rejuvenated by playing on a good team and will probably only going to get a 1 or 2 yr deal (at most) for maybe $8 million/yr (at most) where as Swish is more likely to command something like 4 yrs @ $15 mil/yr. Ichiro fits in better with the Yankees long term plans and their needs to diversify their offense by adding more contact hitters. Not that Ichiro will be here long term – maybe 2 years, max – but Ichiro helps them as a stop gap right fielder until they can get their 2014 ducks in a row while a new contract for Swisher will just make their path going forward that much more difficult.

What i’m saying is, better get your last looks at Swisher in pinstripes while you can.

Yankees offensive slumber continues, NY Giants rock 49ers

Both games started at 4 PM – that’s just genius. I’m sure you know how things went down by now (even though watching all of both games was impossible) – The NY Giants obliterated the 49ers and the Yankees offensive slump continued as the Tigers went up two games to none in the ALCS.

I was surprised that the Giants were able to run all over the 49ers and had two interceptions, but I guess that’s the reality of the situation – I just didn’t think the 49ers were the sort of team that made those kind of mistakes.

Oh the Yankees and their awful, awful offense – what can you say? Here’s some facts that will make you ill: Robinson Cano is hitless since the first inning of Game Two of the ALDS (his last 26 at-bats) and is 2 for 32, and if that doesn’t sound bad enough, please consider:

– it’s the longest hitless streak in Yankees post season history
– 2 for 32 works out to a .063 batting average; small sample size, I know, but still, that’s the number

I know I’m bashing Cano a lot, but I think he deserves it. Well, at least more than A-Rod does. I know A-Rod stinks (3-23 in 2012 post season), but I don’t expect much from him – Cano is in the prime of his career. On the other hand, the umpires took away one hit from Cano and an out he made at second via the tag, so Cano is just having a lot of bad luck in general besides my bashing.

Hiroki Kuroda was brilliant yesterday – let’s not forget about that. Win or loose, I’ll always remember his excellent start in this series. The Yankees need to make bringing him back for 2013 a top priority as this guy was clearly built for the big stage.

Where’s the crowd?
Yankee Stadium looked a little empty – for a playoff game, that is. Just keep jacking up those parking and ticket prices, guys. Oh, and the $12 George Washington Bridge toll is also great for business!

Well, let’s hope Phil Hugues has some magic in him and Joe Girardi continues to yell at the hitters for not making in game adjustments.

Voldemort/Ibanez works his magic, but it’s not enough as Jeter FRACTURES HIS EFFING ANKLE


“Only I can hit home runs forever!”

Lord Voldemort AKA Rual Ibanez did what he was does, but his game tying home run (not to mention Ichiro’s two run blast), just wasn’t enough on Saturday night.   There were so many points when the game could have gone differently:  Cano’s hard hit ball off Doug Fister and the resulting blown call at first, Nick Swisher’s less than sparkling right field play, not to mention the inability of those men and A-Rod and Granderson to give any real offensive support.


This. (

These guys are supposed to be good to great and they’ve all been FRIGGIN TERRIBLE.  Now that Derek Jeter has fractured his ankle, I assume Edwardo Nunez (aka Scissorhands) will get activated, but somebody is going to have to pick it up now that the Yankees have lost their most productive hitter.

I know David Phelps has only made two appearances and he was probably rusty in both, but 5 hits, 3 runs and 1 walk in 2.1 innings is NOT getting it done.  I’ve been a Phelps booster all year long, but he’s just not getting it done.

So where does this leave the Yankees at this point?  Outside of the struggling bats coming to life in a series where the Yankees can’t score runs to save their lives, things are looking bleak.  As they did in the first series, the Yankees pitching staff is probably going to have to do all the heavy lifting going forward.

Yankees vs Orioles Game 5 of 2012 ALDS: Rocky II ending?

Obviously, last night was a bitter disappointment as the Yankees failed to capitalize when they had scoring opportunities and the advantage they would have had in a potential Game 1 against the Detroit Tigers, who will not be able to pitch Justin Verlander until game 3. Anyway that ship has sailed. Now, it’s time to move on to Game 5.

Like the other three ALDS series, this series is going to the fifth and final round, and a pitching rematch of game 1. CC Sabathia has been masterful of late, so that has to make you feel good, but the offensive corpses of Alex Rodriguez, Nick Swisher, Curtis Granderson and the rapidly decomposing Robinson Cano desperately need to show up tonight for the Yankees to have a real hope of moving on to the next round.

Maybe it’ll be like Rocky II – all of the games have been close (and in truth, the Orioles could have very easily swept this series if things had gone a different way), so maybe in this final contest, both teams will just fall down on the field and the umpires will award the game to whoever gets up within a 10 count.

Enough with the A-Rod bashing already!

Look, Yankee fans, I know A-Rod is, for a certain portion of you, the guy you love to hate, but the Alex Rodriguez bashing is getting old.  I know this is the playoffs and the stakes are high, but jeez.  Let’s take a look at the Yankees 2012 post season numbers so far:


stats from USA Today

Sure, Ibanez was the big hero last night with two homers, but he only has 5 at bats in this series, so he’s not a regular. As for the every day players,  Jeter, Teixeira and Martin are hitting, but the rest of the starting position players?  Not so much.  If A-Rod didn’t have one more at bat than Granderson, their stats would be identical.  Granderson hit 41 homers this season, and he’s basically turned into an all or nothing guy, and so far, nothing is what has shown up from him… and I haven’t heard one person say shit about that.  Not on the radio, not on the web and not via text.  Everyone just maintains that A-Rod sucks, which isn’t wrong right now, but he’s not the only lifeless bat on this team.  If Cano hadn’t picked up that last minute RBI double in Game 1, he’d be about where A-Rod is in terms of production, and those were just tack on runs…  so why doesn’t anyone complain about Cano?  He’s supposed to be one of the great hitters in the game right now, and he’s not doing much of anything in this series.  And frankly, A-Rod is a broken down old man, but Cano and Granderson are supposed to be in their primes.  What gives?  Where’s the complaints?

I guess the problem is that these other guys are “True Yankees” and A-Rod is just some hired gun… except when he carried the offense on his back to a World Series title in 2009.  But then, that doesn’t count because A-Rod did steroids, right?  Something like that.  Jeter is 6-13 in this series, so who cares if he’s made 2 errors in 3 games and grounded out to 3rd with the bases loaded in a pivotal spot in game 2?  Nobody, that’s who.

I know, I’m just wasting my time trying to convince A-Rod haters that he’s not the reason they lost game 2 and not the reason they offense has been lifeless this series, but I had to try.   I figure A-Rod deserves and advocate because… you know… 2 MVPs with the Yankees.  One World Series title that he had a lot to do with .

Just sayin’.


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