Several weeks ago, with much fanfare, Baseball Weekly announced that one
Peter Pascarelli had joined their staff. Apparrently, Pascarelli was an
"acclaimed journalist" who now was turning his "talents" to writing about
baseball. He immediately demonstrated his lack of understanding of this
game in several different ways, but this week he has topped himself. He
criticizes the Yankees because, he says, they will give up Don Mattingly
after the season in order to keep Darryl Strawberry and Ruben Sierra.
Where he comes up with this is beyond me since Mattingly, a first baseman
has no relation to what the Yankees will do with two DHes who
unfortunately occasionally play the outfield. I quote:
"Never mind that Mattingly still has considerable worth as a leader,
defensively excellent first baseman and occasional offensive weapon"
I'll give him the defense, since, although he may be overrated, mattingly
is still a very good 1Bman. But the term "occasional offensive weapon"
seems to stand out. Occasionally, Ozzie Guillen gets 3 hits in a game,
maybe even one for extra bases. Occasionally, any major leaguer playing
regualrly is the decisive bat in a given game. So what? It's not very
difficult to find a 1st baseman who can do better than Mattingly's .330
OBP and .393 (!!!!) SLG. In fact, it's rather difficult to find a 1Bman
who CAN'T top such woeful numbers. Some say this is a really bad year for
Mattingly. No doubt, it is an off year, but by how much? His OBPs for the
last 5 years: .311 .344 .329 .366 .400. his SLGs: .335 .394 .416 .445
.411. Yeah, it's an off year, but not by as much as some would have us
believe. Take out last year, which is a positive standout, and his
numbers are not particularly off by very much. As to leadership: Pshaw, I
say. Even if there was any evidence to suggest that this mythical detail
even exists, which there is not, exactly what has Mattingly ever led the
Yankees to? In his prime, this team specialized in the August/September
collapse. Have they ever surprised us with a year we didn't expect them
to have? If, as Pascarelli would have us believe, leadership exists at
all, when has Mattingly ever demonstrated it? What we have seen is a man
who is, even now, whining about his poor treatment this year. Poor
treatment? Never, absolutely never, have I seen New York fans and New
York media treat a player having as terrible a year as Mattingly is
having so kindly, yet rather than saying "yeah, I'm having a bad year"
Mattingly whines that people dare to criticize one of the worst offensive
1Bmen in the game. Yeesh! Sierra, as poor a player as he is, still
contributes far more as a part-time hitter than Mattingly does as a
full-time one. Strawberry sure has looked like he can be a force if
Showalter ever lets him play on any sort of regular basis (which he
doesn't seem willing to do). Straw has not had a chance to get into any
kind of groove, yet he has 3 HRs in ~85 PAs, compared to mattingly 6 HRs
in ~450 ABs. Can't imagine why they'd want to keep him.
This msg was sent to | "Democracy don't rule the world, you'd better get
you free of charge | that through your head. This world is ruled by
from Mitchell | ***, but I guess that's better left unsaid."
Plitnick of the famed| ---Bob Dylan
Berkeley Plitnicks |
_____________________| "Let me bring you love from the fields; poppies red
| and roses filled with summer rain"
| ---Ian Anderson