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You ruined another season, George.  With your big yap, your nothing can be good enough mentality, and above all, your motivation through intimidation bullshit techniques.  Congratulations, really.  Now, let me make something perfectly clear to you:

You are the owner of the Yankees.  You are not THE YANKEES proper.  You did not invent the history, design the pinstripes, mold the players past and/or present.  You wrote the checks, and you collected the revenues, and from time to time you ensured that no player on the field (nor manager in the dugout) could forget that he means nothing without a World Series ring.

I said last year that if you canned Torre over the postseason, I would have serious trouble cheering for the Yankees.  Well, it sure looks like you’re going to do just that this year, and I stand by my word.  Letting Torre go is a huge mistake, and if you really think it will somehow help bring a Championship back to the Bronx then you know less about baseball than I thought.

So congratulations.  You’ve once again asserted your boneheaded, iron-fisted will on the organization, and I really hope it works out the way I think it will–with half of the team bailing to organizations who have an actual chance of winning because they allow their players to remember that they’re the ones winning games.  Maybe you can trot dollar bills out onto the field next year instead of men.  That’s how everyone sees the Yankees anyhow.  For me, if Torre goes, I go.  I’ll watch the Yankees again when you’re dead.  Let’s hope that happens sooner rather than later, because already an entire generation is growing up remembering the Yankees as the Evil Empire rather than for their rich history and many contributions to the game of baseball.

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I couldn’t really write about it until I knew Steinbrenner wasn’t going to do something boneheaded like canning Joe Torre, but as any Yankee fan will attest, this post season blew huge hairy balls.

No, not because we lost. Because of how we lost. By sucking.

A lot is made of the payroll, ‘buying’ championships, evil empire and all that rot. Do people really think that’s the problem? The problem is that nothing short of winning the World Series is good enough. Good baseball isn’t good enough if it doesn’t yield a big shiny ring. That’s bullshit.

As a Yankee fan, I’m pretty damn sick of being portrayed as a selfish, narcissistic, must-win asshole who knows nothing about baseball. I don’t give a crap if people don’t like the Yankees. There are plenty of teams I don’t like, or just don’t care about. It’s part of life. I am, however, sick of Steinbrenner’s antics being held up as the true nature of anyone who plays for or supports the Yankees. I don’t think the Orioles are evil because of Angelos, or the Giants because of Bonds. Likewise, hating individual Yankee players because of their salaries seems like an awful lot of sour grapes.
It is my honest opinion that these guys played so everloving horribly because of two things:
1. It is impossible to do your job well, or even adequately, when someone is breathing down your neck telling you it’s not enough. Goals, ie rings, are great but if you don’t achieve your goal, ie ring, you shouldn’t have to feel like the, say, 97 games you won were for naught.
2. Steinbrenner’s penchant for bringing aging stars on board is incredibly damaging. Think Kevin Brown. Think Sheff instead of bringing back Pettitte. Hell, I’d be tickled pinstripe if Jon Lieber and El Duque were still around. See a theme here?
Second part to this is that with so many big names often come big attitudes and set ways. This leads to teammates in name only, united by a common outfit. Not that there aren’t players who pal around and seem to have fun, but for the most part it doesn’t feel like these guys are a team.

I just want to be clear about something here. The Yankees didn’t play horribly because of Torre, or Damon laughing in the dugout at the brink of elimination, or because Jeter isn’t more buddy buddy with A-Rod, or because of ANY INDIVIDUAL PLAYER. They sucked because there is no credit for getting to the post season anymore. There is no credit for bouncing back from major injuries to retake the division lead. All there is is the relentless ‘anything less than everything is nothing’ attitude and it simply has to end, or we’ll be going through this every damn year until Steinbrenner kicks, and I don’t have that kind of patience. Sure, I want the Yankees to win, but they can’t do it all the time. They should be able to play a decent ball game, though, and that is my complaint with this postseason.

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‘So, Mommy, how are the Yankees playing?’
‘Well, sweetie, they lost today.’
‘Oh. How about the Mets?’

Ahhh, the postseason. Suffice it to say, I spent the day on the couch watching the Yanks, am now listening to the Padres/Cards, and we are looking forward to the Mets tonight. I’m trying to make up for several decades of not paying attention to baseball.

Other than that, I am finding myself absolutely livid about gender issues and I’m not quite sure how to address my fury. I’ll probably write about it for workshop, but I don’t know how yet. I’m just too freaking mad, and this quote pretty much sums up why:

“BECAUSE we girls want to create mediums that speak to US. We are tired inside. We are dying inside and we never even touch each other, we are supposed to hate each other… BECAUSE we are being divided by our labels and philosophies, and we need to accept and support each other as girls, acknowledging our different approaches to life and accepting all of them as valid. BECAUSE we need to acknowledge that our blood is being spilt, that right now a girl is being raped or battered and it might be me or you or your mom or the girl you sat next to on the bus last Tuesday, and she might be dead by the time you finish reading this… BECAUSE a safe place needs to be created for girls where we can open our eyes and reach out to each other without being threatened by this sexist society and our day-to-day shit. BECAUSE every time we pick up a pen, or an instrument, or get anything done, we are creating the revolution. We are the revolution.”
–Erika Reinstein

I read that quote for the first time in the early nineties. It’s now 2006. Have things really gotten any better?

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One of the most difficult parts of being a Yankee fan is the doom and gloom surrounding every loss. Last night’s game was a bummer. It certainly wasn’t a blow-out, though, and I’m not quite ready to throw my hands up in disgust. Unit pitched a complete game, folks were hitting and fielding, and there were some close plays. Santana just pitched better and K-Rod was, well, K-Rod. This is not the end of the world (series) or the end of the season.
Now, if they lose the home opener I’ll be seriously bummed, but that’s because my arse will be in the stadium.

In other news, the new Joga Bonita commercial featuring Ronaldinho has changed my opinion of the campaign. This is partly because it’s hard to glower at Ronaldinho, and partly because my daughter recognizes the intro, causing her to stop dead in her tracks, inhale deeply, and whisper ‘Ronaldinho’ with the most dreamlike grin this side of teenage.

Half an hour to Arsenal, and I’m hoping to hell they knock Man U around a bit.

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Yes, I am a woman. I am in fact an American woman who likes what the rest of the world calls ‘football.’ I also rather enjoy baseball. As such, most of my posts will center around the aforementi0ned subjects.
To answer a few questions that may come up:
1. I am a Yankee fan. No, not because Jeter is hot. I’m sure he’s a perfectly attractive fellow, but I’m more concerned with his ability to get on base than his choice of dates or where he went clubbing last night.

2. I am an Arsenal fan. And, again, not because I’ve seen Freddie Ljungberg posing in his skivvies for Calvin Klein. Again, I’m sure he’s also an attractive man but I’m more worried about how his calf is healing.

3. I also follow
football:
Juventus, Liverpool and Fiorentina. I love Ronaldinho, Vieira and Pavel Nedved, Steven Gerrard and Peter Crouch, and I’m quite happy that Luca Toni has emerged as a player to watch so that people don’t look at me funny when I wear my Fiorentina jersey.

baseball:
Orioles and Twins. I love Tejada and Mora, Torii Hunter, El Duque, Jose Contreras, Dontrelle Willis, Kerry Wood and Mark Prior (when they aren’t broken.)
4. I am against (football edition:) Diving, coming on the pitch late, Jose Mourinho and his ‘blame anyone but me’ attitude, Ronaldo calling out Pele, racist chants and banners, Paolo DiCanio and the jackbooted fans of Lazio and AC Roma, and the Joga Bonita ad campaign that is played every five minutes on Fox Soccer Channel.

5. I am against (baseball edition:) The notion of Bonds breaking Hank Aaron’s home run record, the Red Sox, stupid graphics during games, migrating strike zones and players who don’t run hard to first on flies or run hard to catch flies.

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