November 3, 2006
The Yankees entered the bidding war for the rights to negotiate with Japan's Daisuke Matsuzaka of the Seibu Lions, and why not? After the Team's sudden and disappointing ejection from the post season, courtesy of the Detroit Tigers, Yankee fans deserve a Christmas present in the form of highly touted, high-priced talent. Not every Japanese player has thrived in a Yankee uniform. Hideki Irabu inspired "The Boss" to utter one of his most famous lines about a player, saying he looked like a "fat (expletive deleted)toad"
However, one can't say anything bad about Hideki Matsui. He may not be the greatest left fielder in the majors, but with his quick release, he makes up for a weak throwing arm. He's a smart base runner and a very clutch hitter.
There's not too much to gamble by going after Japanese pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka who is being posted by the Seibu Lions as it will cost only money. Matsuzaka is a celebrity in Japan, and should thrive here as he is used to a lot of attention. Plus, it doesn't hurt to have fellow countryman and super star Hideki Matsui around to show him how things are done in New York.
The Yankees need to make a splash by signing a big name early on in the off season. This signing makes sense because Yankee fans deserve a bit of salve for their wounds after the playoffs. The Yankees sorely need pitching, and they need to keep Matasuzka away from teams like the Red Sox, Angels, Rangers, and oh yes...the Mets, for the sake of their cross-town rivalry.
Derek Jeter was awarded his third straight Rawlings Gold Glove Award, according to MLB.com. Not much to say here, except congratulations. Anyone who's ever witnessed Derek's gymnastics at shortstop, especially his signature "jump in the air and throw to first" maneuver, knows that this is a well deserved honor.