2023 New York Yankees Season Preview

Well, the Superbowl is done, and that means Major League Baseball’s Spring Training is here! Pitchers and catchers reported February 13th, and we’re officially off and running with the 2023 MLB season! There have been a few rule changes going into this season that will immediately be noticeable. First off, there’s a pitch clock to attempt to help speed up the game a bit. In testing it out last season in the minors, it managed to shave roughly about a half hour off of a typical game. How exactly it’ll be implemented in the postseason remains to be seen since those can be some real pressure cooker games that while it would be nice to not have to devote 5 hours to watching a single game, taking away some of the suspense might not be such a great idea. Case-in-point: ESPN ran a great story here about how Kirk Gibson’s walk-off home run at-bat during Game 1 of the 1988 World Series would have been impacted by these new rules. It’s a great read, certainly worth checking out!

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What is Wrong With the New York Yankees?

Before I get started, I want to be completely transparent here: for the last few years, I’ve begun typing season retrospectives much like this one, and each year, they end up not getting published and are left to rot here in my drafts bin. The reason for this is because as I go back to proofread these things, I don’t necessarily like the way I come off in these pieces. I’ve always hated the notion that Yankees fans are entitled crybabies who need to be humbled. But the truth of the matter is that the team’s last owner, George M. Steinbrenner, III, instilled in fans of his team that to the Yankees organization, any season that doesn’t end with a World Series Championship is a failure.

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Yankees vs. Astros and The Building of a Rivalry

As a Yankees fan, the main rivalry for my New York Yankees has always been with the Boston Red Sox. It’s a rivalry that’s stood the test of time and has lasted well over a century now. From when Harry Frazee sold the contract of Babe Ruth to the Yankees in 1919 to fund his musical, “No, No, Nanette”, and that sparked the Curse of the Bambino for Boston, in which they would go championship-less for 86 years, experiencing postseason heartbreak after painful postseason heartbreak.

To me, the best rivalries revolve around postseason matchups & over my lifetime, the ones that built over the course of a few seasons would include the Angels, and most recently, the Astros. For a few seasons there in 2002 & 2005, it seemed that Mike Scioscia’s Angels had the Yankees’ number, defeating New York in the Divisional Series both years, but that demon was slayed in 2009 when the Yankees finally defeated the Angels in the American League Championship Series en route to their 27th World Series Championship.

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Paul O’Neill and The Retirement of #21

When you look back at the Yankees’ dynasty run of the late 90s, everyone always brings up the “Core Four” as they like to term the group of Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte & Mariano Rivera, and rightfully so…two of them are first-ballot Hall of Famers! But to think that those teams relied fully on the amazing play of those four players would be foolish. There are countless other players whose team-first mentality and post season heroics helped build that dynasty as well, such as Bernie Williams, Scott Brosius & especially the man who I’m here to sing the praises of today: Paul O’Neill.

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Professional Sports Frustrations/Satisfactions

I’ve been a fan of the New Jersey Devils for just about as long as I can remember. The team originally came to New Jersey from Colorado back in 1982 — when I was 4 years old. So during the time I’ve followed them, I’ve been there from the lowest of lows – routinely finishing in the basement of the Patrick Division to the highest highs of their existence – making it to the Stanley Cup Finals 5 times, and winning the Cup three times. Unfortunately, we’re back to one of those low points in the franchise’s existence. Since making it to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2012 and losing to the LA Kings in 6 games, the team has certainly fallen on hard times.

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2017 New York Yankees Thoughts

So I’m not gonna lie…I’m still sore about the Yankees’ loss in game 7 of the 2017 ALCS to the Astros.

I know, I know…we’re supposed to be happy with the progress this team of youngsters made this year and marvel at the fact that this was to be the first “rebuilding year” of possibly many, only it turned out that this team of kids with a few veterans sprinkled in caught lightning in a bottle, were competitive all year long, made it into the wildcard game and actually won to advance on to the American League Divisional Series.

And they did it in true Yankee style…proving that they’re a team that plays the full 9 innings, that an early deficit can be overcome and that at Yankee Stadium, on a night in October, anything is still possible. Oh the ghosts were out and plenty of Yankees postseason magic was in the air in the Bronx, which really got me to thinking that this might be the year they get #28!

Until it wasn’t. So let’s go back and look at some of the amazing memories from this past season, shall we? And then we’ll come back to how it all ended. Continue reading “2017 New York Yankees Thoughts”

Fenway Park

So in trying to come up with other things to write about here, I decided that since I’m such a sports fan and enjoy going to various venues to see events, that it should only be fitting to share my experiences at those venues I’ve been to. So to start things off, I’ll open this series with one the came up in my Facebook memories today from 10 years ago…

Fenway Park

I know, I know…I’m a Yankees fan, right? So what the hell was I doing going to a Bosox game? Well it’s quite simple, actually! I wanted to check out Fenway Park. It’s a historic venue that obviously, quite a number of amazing Yankees historic moments have happened in. From brawls between the two teams: Munson/Fisk in ’73 to Pedro/Zimmer in 2004 to amazing victories like Bucky Dent’s 7th inning 3-run homer in the tie breaker game in 1978 to give the Yankees a lead they wouldn’t give up, and who can forget Mike Mussina’s 1-hitter that was a single strike away from a perfect game in 2001. A lot of great baseball has happened in this park, so being a baseball fan…I had to go! Continue reading “Fenway Park”

The Retirement of an All-Time Great Yankee #RE2PECT

“The name Derek Jeter is made for stardom. He’s got an infectious smile, and he’s so handsome and well-behaved. He’s just a fine young man who does everything right. He’s like Jack Armstrong and Frank Merriwell, guys I grew up rooting for. Some guys come along who just measure up.”

George M. Steinbrenner, III

Where do I even begin?

To try to start a career retrospective on Derek Jeter is next to impossible considering everything he has meant to and done for the Yankees over the last two decades. I’ve really been putting this off since I really don’t know I can truly do the man any justice here in print form. But I don’t want to just not do it, because that, I believe would be a bigger disservice to the man whose career unfolded right in front of my eyes. So with that said, here goes nothing…

I’ve been a baseball fan for as long as I can remember, going back to when I was a kid and my family would go to a Yankees game here and there back in the mid 80s and early 90s. Liking the Yankees was just something I was born into. My Dad’s family lived in the Bronx and my Grandmother was a big fan of the boys in pinstripes and I always got to hear stories about how great the Yankees were back when guys with names like Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio, Mantle, Maris, Berra, Munson, Jackson and a slew of others played for the team, but by the mid 80s…all those names were long gone and what was left was a mediocre team filled with names like Randolph, Henderson, Winfield, Kelly, Sax, Barfield, Righetti & my favorite at that time…Mattingly.

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