Thursday, February 10, 2005

This Is What I'm Talking About

When I read that A-Rod article from last week, it made me get down on my knees and thank my personal lord and savior, Rich Gedman, that the Red Sox never got the slap-meister.

A-Rod's words also showed me that he is a true yankee: someone who'll gladly break the rules in an attempt to win.

If you're like me, and you've watched a huge amount of yankee games in your life, you know of the unfair advantage they get from the umpires, especially in yankee Stadium. Now you may be saying, "Then why were they so bad in the eighties?" Well, they won more games than any team in the league in the eighties. When a yankee fan tries to tell you, "We've gone through tough times, too...," that's like [insert rich guy here, the default is Bill Gates] telling you he's lost his wallet a few times. Yes, the yanks have had some bad years, and I will cherish those times always, but their success seems to snowball, because when they win once, the fans start to show up, making the Stadium louder, giving the umps all the more reason to make calls in their favor.

You put a rookie ump in yankee Stadium, he's gonna hear that crowd go nuts when he makes a pro-yankee call, and those cheers are going to make him want to do it again. That Stadium is LOUD, mainly because of the way it's built. People say they can feel the stadium shake sometimes it's so loud. (But put that place in Boston, we'd make it fall down. My point is, it's not the girl, Peter, it's the building.) But nonetheless, their stadium is loud, and the umps hear that. On the other hand, there's a higher percentage of morons at yankee Stadium than anywhere, and the last thing the umps want is to get physically hurt, so it's hard for them to make a call for the visitors.

Knowing all of this, I've often wondered how much the players actually try to use this advantage. Well, actually, I've seen it, but I never thought I'd hear anyone admit it.

But here comes A-Rod. Just read what he said about the slap: "I thought it was a smart play, and we almost got away with it. We put an umpire in the position of having to turn over a call like that in Yankee Stadium. It gave us a shot."

This guy needs one of his own slaps right in his goat-like face for, like, each individual word in that sentence. "" First of all, he says "we almost got away with it"! In other words, "I cheated. Too bad it didn't work. I really would have liked it if my cheating had taken us to the World Series." And then we come to the whole umpire thing I was talking about before. This is what I've been waiting for. He admits that the yankees' team goal is to do whatever it takes, break the rules, whatever, to get the outcome their looking for. Then, the umps will be put in a position where they'll have to risk life and limb to change the call in favor of the visitors. If you think I'm exaggerating, recall the national fucking guard on the field right after the umps overturned, correctly, those two calls in Game 6. (The plays have to be that obvious for the umps to actually turn over a call in that place.) So classic, yankee fans throwing crap on the field when the correct call is made, while the only time you ever saw a garbage barrage at Fenway was when the fans could actually see Steinbrenner's money falling out of the umps' pockets in the '99 ALCS, when Chuck Knon-chalablauch was missing a tag by three feet.

Then A-Rod called the slap "a smart play, one I would've made again." So it was smart to break the rules, and correctly be penalized for it, possibly costing your team a World Series berth? This is like when Dignan in Bottle Rocket says "Crime does pay." What is this dude thinking? Does he still not realize you're just not allowed to take a slap at the ball in a fielder's glove?

"In the heat of the moment, you do things sometimes out of instinct," dickboy says. Great. You know, I can relate to all of this, Alex. I was playing soccer the other day, and instinctively, I picked up the ball with my hand and threw it in the goal. I knew since that since my dad was the ref, it would be hard for him to disallow the goal. Turns out he did. But I feel I was very smart to do that, and in tomorrow's soccer game, I'll be trying this maneuver again.

(Also, he says the play was both smart and instinctive, which is impossible. If you use instincts, this implies that you're not thinking through the situation, using your intelligence, first.)

There's also the question of the bowling over of the fielder. All-star commenter Sam was asking if Bronson was even in the baseline to be bowled over. He wasn't, just the glove, which needed to be there in order to make a tag. Hey Alex, how about trying to avoid the tag? Apparently that wouldn't be smart or instinctive.

So, terrible job, A-Rod. I'm glad Jeter has shown you the ropes of cheating to win. You're almost at his level. Speaking of "Cheets," my favorite part of the slap play was the Jeter fist-pump that was stricken from the record.

And speaking of cheaters in general, Giambi apologized today. For what, he could not say. But whatever it is, Jason, I don't accept.

God, I can't wait to see these guys out on the field at Fenway while we raise that flag.

OK but why did they not include that whole ARod segment in the official MLB World Series DVD (which is, essentially, a Sox playoff documentary)? *acts bewildered*

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