There have been a couple of expected, yet big moves made by the Yankees this off season so far. Good riddance to Gary Sheffield, the multi-millionaire who's lucky enough to play baseball for a living and who is never satisfied with his situation. His big bat will be missed, but only for a short while. It seems the Yankees (Cashman) are focusing early on their pitching needs as the traded Sheffield for three young pitchers. In this market, any pitcher worth trading for is worth taking.
It was no surprise that Jaret Wright was dealt away. It was a rare move to send him to division rivals, the Orioles, but the return value came in the form of a right handed reliever. Being as that Wright rarely went more than 5 1/3 innings for the Yanks, and that he routinely pitched into jams, he won't be missed by Yankee fans. The good thing for Wright is he will be reunited with Leo Mazzone, his former pitching coach with Atlanta who is now also with the Orioles. The Yankees got rid of two headaches and came up with four young arms. That sounds like a good deal to this Yankee fan.
Now comes the real fun. This is the time of year when followers of the "Hot Stove League" really heats up. The General Managers Meetings begin Monday in Naples, Florida. There 's a lot of anticipation in the air as many Yankee fans expect something big to happen. All Yankee fans need to do is sit back, cross their fingers, and think: "pitching, pitching, pitching". Oh, and let's not forget first base. Close your eyes and wish for Nomar Garciaparra.
November 13, 2006
Mr. Grudge's article "Mighty Mussina At Bat" has been published in Gotham Baseball magazine on line. You may read the article in it's entirety by clicking here. Please visit Gotham Baseball, read the columns, check out the message boards, and subscribe to the magazine.