Thursday, February 14, 2008


From Peter Abraham this morning:
For those of you waiting for No. 21 to get retired, Morgan Ensberg has it.

Other than the retired numbers, the only numbers not assigned are 6, 51, 69, 98 and 99.
That's the first time since 2001 that 21 has been assigned and it gets handed to Morgan-freakin'-Ensberg?

For those who don't know, Paul O'Neill was 21.

In other Yankees news, Legends Field (the Yankees spring training home) has been renamed George M. Steinbrenner Field. I think "Steinbrenner Field" would do just fine (that's probably what it will be called). Before you say it, Big Stein did not initiate it. From the press release:
The name change follows two unanimous resolutions recommending and supporting the change by the Hillsborough County Commission and the Tampa City Council.
But do you all know what this means? Pitchers and catchers have reported, baby! It's like spotting the first robin. Spring is around the corner. And, for just a few moments, we can worry about real things, like where Joba will pitch, who will play first, and can the Bombers really win championship number twenty-seven.

In other words, we don't necessarily have to think about Roger Clemens and Brian McNamee.

Oh, and I'll keep this simple. Sorry, Rog; I think you're guilty. Andy Pettitte went the honesty-meets-Sammy "The Bull" Gravano-route. It would be much better if you had just said "my bad" in the first place. You'd be linked with steroids forever, but all would likely be forgiven (ala Andy himself). And can we please keep partisan politics out of baseball? JesusGod! The Republicans killed McNamee (and gee, isn't he just loaded with credibility?) and the Democrats were all over Clemens. Find some balls (no pun intended) and speak your conscience.

What a sideshow.


Tim Parry said...

The Yankees retire WAY too many numbers. My take: You get in the Hall, you deserve to have your number retired.

Rob Adams said...

I'm going to disagree - slightly. I think there are certain times when there are exceptions - players that might not be HOF'ers but are icons. For me, that's Don Mattingly and Paul O'Neill (though I might not retire O'Neill's). I'm not a big Bernie Williams guy (I know, that seems crazy). I'm on record as being against the retiring of Reggie Jackson, Billy Martin, and Ron Guidry. Even Elston Howard was a "PC" move, as far as I was concerned.

Roger Maris, on the other hand, is a different story. I think we all appreciate Maris' accomplishment of 61 in '61 even more so today, thanks to our steroids era.

Now when looking at baseball numbers alone, you see some really crazy retirees. Billy Meyer for the Pirates, Wade Boggs by the Devil Rays, and others.

Then there are times when death gets in the way of potential. Consider Thurman Munson and the impact he had on the Yankees. Of course, considering how polarizing the Yanks are, let's look at somebody like Junior Gilliam, whose number probably would not have been retired by the Dodgers, but he passed away during the 1978 playoffs, when he was still a coach for LA. Still there are other cases that can be debated here also (Carl Barger - who never played for the Marlins, yet #5 is retired because he died and was a Joe DiMaggio fan?) .

It's one of those great sports topics that is open for lots of discussion, but there's no "cut and dry" answer.