September 26, 2006
Two Things Needed This Post-Season
The more I think about it, the more I want to say that the Yankees are going to need two things to happen in this post-season for the team to win.
First, Torre is going to have to manage like it's 1996 in a series where the Yankees are in a hole. By this, I mean, he's going to have to bench some people in spots where the lesser name is the better option. Joe was willing to sit Tino and Boggs in 1996. He should be willing to bench someone like Giambi against a very tough left-hander this year - if the situation calls for it.
I know Torre will no longer do this - can you see him pinch-hitting for A-Rod, late in a game, with Guiel, in a contest where a flame-throwing RH-RP comes into a tie-game with a runner on 3rd and one out? But, if he wants to win, as badly as he did in 1996, Torre needs to put the team in front of the egos.
Secondly, someone on the Yankees staff is going to have to pull a "Jim Beattie 1978" - meaning someone who has not been a huge factor this season, for the most part, is going to have to step up in the post-season and make big pitching contributions in at least two games.
Maybe it's Jaret Wright? Maybe it's Cory Lidle? Maybe it's Darrell Rasner or Jeff Karstens? But, given the situation with Randy Johnson, the Yankees are going to need someone outside of Wang and Mussina to hold down the wins for them.
If these things don't happen, this year could just be another dead stone in the string of 2002-2005 post-season letdowns.
Posted by Steve Lombardi at September 26, 2006 03:42 PM
Don't get your hopes up. Torre stopped managing the day after the 1996 World Series.
If Torre pinch hits for Arod in the post season with Guile because a flame throwing righty is on the mound, then Torre should instantly be banned from the Yankee clubhouse leaving Mazzilli as the manager for the remiander of the season.
(I can't believe you would say not pinch hitting for Arod with Guile in a given situation is cause to criticize Torre. It is silly...takes the Arod thing to a whole new level.
Posted by: Jeteupthemiddle at September 26, 2006 04:55 PM
Shoot, even I know that A-Rod can't touch a flame-throwing RH-RP the first time he faces him in a game. [wink]
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at September 26, 2006 04:57 PM
Funny you mention this, as I just rewatched the 96 World Series movie. Great stuff, and the two guys that keep popping up in big spots are Charlie Hayes and Cecil Fielder, who are of course the guys that were subbed in for Tino and Boggs. Fielder especially had a ton of big knocks.
By the way, I love that video. The fans that they focus in on key spots are complete freaks--both Atlanta and New York fans. Well worth tracking down for Yankee fans.
I don't really think you can pinch hit for ARod, if your going to pinch hit for him then he shouldn't be hitting that high in the lineup in the first place and maybe shouldn't even be playing...as much as we know he struggles, I still think you can't pinch hit for him in a situation like that in the playoffs and you still have the believe that maybe he will pull one out of his ass, I'm sure Torre thinks so..haha