Not Hyperbole: The Worst Article Ever

I do not know who David Sabino of SI.com is, but he finds a way to fit so many of my pet peeves about the national media’s perception of the Yankees into one article that I have to assume that he wrote it to bait Yankees fans into jumping off the nearest bridge. It comes from SI’s spring training primer. Let’s tear this one apart, FJM style:

Winter grade: A-
The Yankees didn’t blink while signing three of the top five free agents on the market — A.J. Burnett, CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira — for a whopping $423.5 million because Bobby Abreu, Jason Giambi, Carl Pavano and Pudge Rodriguez were wiped off the payroll. GM Brian Cashman also re-signed Andy Pettitte to a one-year incentive-laden deal to shore up the back of the rotation while bolstering the bench by trading Wilson Betemit and prospects for versatile, switch-hitting Nick Swisher. Another quality arm or two in the bullpen (in addition to the re-signing of lefty Damaso Marte) to help set up for Mariano Rivera would’ve earned the full “A.”

There are valid reasons to give the Yankees an A- for the offseason.… Click here to read the rest

“Boli” not legally available in DR

From ESPN:

According to the official in charge of the agency which regulates pharmaceutical drugs in the Dominican Republic, Primobolan was not available for legal purchase, over-the-counter or with a prescription in his country between 2001 and 2003.

Dr. Pia Veras, who oversees the regulatory agency, told ESPNdeportes.com that Primobolan is known as “boli” in the streets of Dominican Republic, and was not legal for purchase during the aforementioned years.

“What Alex Rodriguez stated at the press conference [in Tampa] doesn’t make sense,” Veras said. “It is important for us to clarify that such substance has not been registered and is not currently registered for legal sale in Dominican pharmacies — not now and the same applies for the years 2001 to 2003.”

A representative of Rodriquez’s disputed the accuracy of the ESPNDeportes.com report.

Veras allowed ESPNdeportes.com to check the official records of the agency, which oversees, monitors and tracks the pharmaceutical inventory that is legally sold in the Dominican Republic.

Click here to read the rest

Sporting News Pick Yankees

Not that this means anything, but the first of the media outlet predictions for 2009 are out, and they love them some Yankees. The Sporting News picks the Yankees to win the AL East (with Boston taking the Wild Card) and the World Series:

Sporting News prediction: The Yankees don’t hand out ridiculous contracts to just anybody. They hand them out to very good players. As a result, they can make a case for having the best in the game at first base, third base, shortstop, closer and top of the rotation. With that kind of talent, they should win the World Series. This season, they will.

I would say that the statement is a bit hyperbolic, as it is difficult to argue that the Yankees have the best in the game at SS (Hanley Ramirez) or 1B (Albert Pujols). However, the point remains that the Yankees are stacked at multiple positions, and many people will have them as the favorite to win the whole thing in 2009.… Click here to read the rest

Hank responds to Henry

Today, Hank Steinbrenner spoke to the AP about John Henry’s comments concerning a salary cap. Of course, Hank responded with the usual bluster:

“As long as we’re doing that and giving all this money to other teams in revenue sharing, a staggering amount, we should be able to spend on salaries what we want to,” Steinbrenner said. “Because of revenue sharing and because of the popularity nationwide, the Yankees are critical to baseball.”

Get ’em, Hank. The Red Sox need to stop whining. They act like they’re the Florida Marlins — that’s their image. They try to underscore their spending and emphasize the spending of their enemies (us) in order to construct an underdog image. It’s sad because it’s worked for them.

Click here to read the rest

Bernie And The Boss In Camp

Two interesting faces showed up at the Yankees spring training facility in Tampa this morning. The Boss, George Steinbrenner, made an appearance, as did Bernie Williams. Their showings are both nostalgic and poignant, while being a little bit sad as well:

Steinbrenner arrived at about 10 a.m., was brought from the parking lot to Steinbrenner Field in a golf cart, then was transferred to a wheel chair near a bank of elevators before going up to his office. The 78-year-old has been increasingly frail in recent years.

Williams, who has not played since 2006, changed into uniform in the Yankees clubhouse and prepared to work out with the team. The 40-year-old, a five-time All-Star during 16 seasons with the Yankees, is getting ready to play for Puerto Rico in next month’s World Baseball Classic.

The previously imperious Boss is now wheeled about the facility that he used to run with an iron fist, while Bernie continues to try and play a game that has passed him by.… Click here to read the rest

Is Steroids Double Standard Justified?

One point often brought up by those sick of the media coverage of steroids in MLB is the seeming double standard when compared to the treatment given to NFL steroid users. As Joe Posnanski pointed out a few days ago:

One of the arguments that never seems to end is why people seem so put off by steroid use in baseball while seeming more or less untroubled by steroid use in football. Barry Bonds is a pariah, Shawne Merriman does television commercials. Generally, people will say that this is because baseball is a game of numbers — and the perception is that steroid use has forever skewed the numbers — while football is a game of action. Generally, people will say that football is a game of gladiators which makes us less concerned what they use, while we look to see more of ourselves in baseball.

Whatever the reason, it seems clear that baseball players are held to higher standard of duty to the fans and the sport.… Click here to read the rest

Report IDs A-Rod’s ‘Cousin Vinny’

Not surprisingly, it did not take long for the mainstream media to identify and locate the mysterious cousin who Alex Rodriguez said assisted him in obtaining steroids from the Dominican Republic during his Tuesday performance press conference.

Per ESPN:

On Tuesday, when Rodriguez said in a nationally televised news conference from New York Yankees spring training in Tampa, Fla., that it was his cousin who provided and injected him with performance enhancing drugs, it was [Yuri] Sucart to whom Rodriguez was referring, Sucart’s wife, Carmen, confirmed to ESPN on Wednesday night.

And from an anonymous source:

“Yuri was a mule, not a guy who would initiate anything,” a friend once close to Rodriguez said Wednesday. “He did what Alex told him to. He was only looking out for Alex. He is not a guy who would take the initiative to go out and buy drugs. Alex said during the press conference that his cousin just did what was asked — that is perfect for Yuri’s MO.

Click here to read the rest