Saturday, March 6, 2021

Have Heart, Will Travel...

Photo Credit: Charles Wenzelberg, The New York Post

Aaron Boone’s eventful week…

It is hard to say Aaron Boone’s procedure this week for a pacemaker was unexpected given he had open-heart surgery to replace his bicuspid aortic valve in 2009, but it was certainly a shock to hear the news this week that he needed to step away for the pacemaker. It is incredible how positive Boone was before this week’s procedure and after. It is a testament to the man. I certainly cannot say I would have handled the news as well as he did. I am glad he emerged from the procedure in good spirits and that all went as well as it could have.

With Boone back in the dugout today (weather-permitting), it sounds awfully quick to me. My uninformed, not medically educated, opinion is he should have taken his time. I would probably prefer to see him take at least a week off before returning to the grind of Spring Training. Carlos Mendoza, “Mendy”, is certainly capable of handling managerial duties while Boone is away. But, as we know, that’s not Boonie. There was no doubt he would be back as soon as he felt physically and mentally capable to do so. In other words, yesterday. I admire his attitude and the incredible role model he sets for his coaches and players, and it is a strong trait that, in combo with other strengths, makes him a good Major League manager. I hope the pressures of being an MLB manager do not wear on him. Managing the most storied franchise in baseball, in front of the most demanding and passionate fans in the Universe, comes with a wee bit of stress, one would think…on top of everything else (media scrutiny, ownership demands, family obligations, etc.).

So, Aaron, we are glad everything went well, and we are happy you are back. But, please, take it easy, we want you for the long haul. You have proven to us you have heart. We want it to keep beating for many championship-filled years. 

It was too bad Corey Kluber’s debut pitching performance for the Yankees was not televised, but looking at the photos, he has such an incredible presence on the mound. I remember hating how good he was as a member of the Cleveland Indians during those playoff years. If he can be that guy, I would love every minute of it. I thought James Paxton could be soft at times but that certainly will not be the case with Klubot.  Win or lose, he is going to battle hard.  I really hope he can make it back to his previous levels.  I will miss Masahiro Tanaka, but I am really looking forward to watching Kluber pitch for the Yankees over Paxton and J.A. Happ. I qualify this by saying I do respect Paxton and I would have supported his return, but I think Kluber, if healthy, can be a force a rotation without the first inning jitters Paxton routinely delivered last year.

Photo Credit: Charles Wenzelberg, The New York Post

Is it wrong that I like Derek Dietrich better than Tyler Wade? Okay, Dietrich cannot cover short like Wade, but otherwise, there is something about Dietrich and feel he is a gamer. Wade has good speed, yes, but I am hopeful Dietrich makes the team. I like Jay Bruce; however, I think Dietrich fits the team better. If Mikes Tauchman and/or Ford must go, so be it. I always hate it when the Yankees cut guys like Ji-Man Choi, Trevor Rosenthal, or Kirby Yates…only for those players to find success elsewhere but if Tauchman and Ford must go elsewhere to find success, it is what it is. I know, rosters are a numbers game, and you can only protect so many people. I cannot help it I am selfish and want all the best players on my team. 

Photo Credit: Randy Miller, NJ Advance Media for

I may not care about the man, but congrats to Domingo German for the strong performance in his return for the Yankees. He pitched two innings in yesterday’s 1-1 tie with the Detroit Tigers, giving up only one hit (a second inning double), no runs, and struck out four. It was the first game he has pitched for the Yankees since he was suspended late in the 2019 season for domestic violence. I believe everyone deserves a second chance but of course that is on German to show he is a changed man. Good pitching performances are meaningless if he has not changed.  Any repeat domestic violence episodes should be grounds for immediate termination (no tolerance policy at this point).

Photo Credit: Frank Franklin II, AP

I was pleased to see former Boston Red Sock Jackie Bradley, Jr. sign with the Milwaukee Brewers. JBJ’s bat never scared me but the guy was an elite defender in center. I am glad he is no longer there (Fenway Park) to snag everything hit anywhere in his jurisdiction. The entire Red Sox outfield that won the World Series on October 28, 2018 is no more. Mookie Betts is counting the big bucks in Los Angeles, Andrew Benintendi is leading a Royal life, and JBJ is pulling up his mug for a cold one in Brew City.

Speaking of Boston, I will hate to see Adam Ottavino pitching for them, but I figure he is just there until July when the Red Sox unload him for prospects with free agency impending. 

As always, Go Yankees!

1 comment:

Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)