"If George Was Still Alive…"

In last night’s Open Thread, Steve asked us to complete the following sentence: “If George was still alive….” My response was as follows:

“….he’d probably wonder why people forgot that he was basically all bark and no bite once he came back from suspension, and would be baffled by the fact that people throw around “if George was alive, he’d do X” as if he would actually have done X.”

Now, George did scare off a number of employees once he returned from his ban from baseball. His constant meddling and browbeating caused some of Joe Torre’s coaches to quit out of frustration, and created a pressure-packed and uncomfortable management situation. That said, the days of him ordering a player to be sent to AAA or just firing managers due to “in the moment” quibbles had largely passed by 1996, and most of the anecdotes that people intend to reference when they pull the “If George was still alive” canard out of the bag occurred decades ago.… Click here to read the rest

Discussion: Once Boss Is Gone, Will Kids Cash Out?

[image title=”large_GEORGE-STEINBRENNER” size=”full” id=”15258″ align=”center” linkto=”full” ]
Steve Lombardi, writing over at Was Watching this morning, surmised that the Steinbrenner clan may cash out of the Yankees once the Boss passes on. The suggestion was that most of the Junior Bosses do not really care that much about the team, and are simply running the club to continue their father’s legacy and attempt to impress him before he dies. Once he goes, most of them could simply search for a mega-payout and live off that for the rest of their lives.

I have two questions about this:

1) Do you agree with Steve? Prior to the 2009 season, I likely would have concurred with his evaluation of the season. However, it seemed to me that Hal warmed to the role as the year progressed, and was really gaining a feel for running the club by the time the offseason was reached. The fact that he set assessed the finances, set a budget, and stuck firm to that line despite the clamoring by Yankees fans for the return of Johnny Damon suggested that he is in this for the long haul.… Click here to read the rest

The Boss To Be At Home Opener

From Newsday:

George Steinbrenner is expected to be at the new Yankee Stadium for the season opener on April 16, a person with knowledge of the situation told Newsday Thursday.

Steinbrenner, who is 78 and thought to be in frail health, has not been seen in New York since he attended last summer’s All-Star Game at the old Yankee Stadium.

“I spoke with him and he said he is going to be there,” the person said. “I doubt he will be at the welcome-home dinner. But he said he is coming to the opener.”

The person said he recently sat with Steinbrenner at two exhibition games in Tampa and found him “very enthusiastic, fully engaged in the game, his players, his manager. To me, he was really terrific.”

Steinbrenner is essentially confined to a wheelchair. “He can’t walk; he has two football knees,” the person said. “He can barely stand.”

Steinbrenner, who made a tearful farewell to the old stadium while riding with one of his daughters in a golf cart last July, is not expected to make a public appearance at the game.

Click here to read the rest

Who Throws Out The First Pitch?

The opening of the new Yankee Stadium is sure to come with plenty of pomp and circumstance. The guys at Dugout Central asked who would get tapped to throw out the first ball at the new place. The answers were to be expected, with Whitey Ford, Yogi Berra, and the Boss getting the votes. I think it should be George, unless he is in such bad shape that he would embarrass himself, in which case I would like Bernie to get the nod.

Who do you think should be given this honor?… 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