If you detest the multi-zillionaire New York Yankees – if
you loathe the so-called Evil Empire so much that you are as openly ecstatic as
Toronto sportscaster Mike Wilner was
yesterday on the air, when he
unabashedly declared his “love” for the team’s miseries and last-place
status – well, enjoy the moment.
It may not last long.
The Yanks are a mere 20-24 and coming off an embarrassing
Subway Series sweep against their geographic rivals, the New York Mets, and yet
they’re confident that they’re on the verge of resurfacing as a dominant squad.
A few of their reasons:
- They were 20-24 last season before going 74-44 and seizing
a post-season berth for the 13th consecutive year.
- Two of their premier players – Alex Rodriguez and Jorge
Posada – should be returning from injuries soon.
- They will resort to wearing gold thongs underneath their
pants in the next few games. No joke. First baseman Jason Giambi reveals the thongs, with their flame-line waistbands,
are worn by him and teammates whenever they’re trying to end slumps. “And it
works for us every time,” he said.
So, um, don’t count out the Yankees just yet.
- As poor as the Yanks have been, the Detroit Tigers
are considerably worse.
With power hitters such as Magglio Ordonez and Miguel Cabrera, this team entered the
season poised to lead the major leagues in offence and threaten the 1,000-run
plateau. Instead, the AL’s
cellar-dwellers have been unproductive and shut out an MLB-high seven times.
Manager Jim Leyland
met Tigers chief Dave Dombrowski yesterday
for some brainstorming.
“I’m totally out of answers,” Leyland
said. “I’ve never been this baffled.”
- The Boston Red Sox, meanwhile, keep improving. The World
Series champions may now be on the verge of acquiring veteran shortstop Omar Vizquel from the San Francisco
Giants. Vizquel and Boston
slugger Manny Ramirez are best pals.
. .Ramirez is closing in on his 500th career home run and A-Rod has taped a
congratulatory message for him that will be played at Boston’s Fenway Park,
which has irked Yankee fans and the club’s Baby Boss, Hank Steinbrenner. . .He might be a bit shaky at times, but
consider B.J. Ryan’s operation (he
missed last season because of Tommy John
surgery) a success. Ryan gives the Blue Jays as reliable a closer as there
is in baseball. . .And, according to U.S. insider Ken Rosenthal, the Jays are one of eight clubs that could pursue
star outfielder Matt Holliday,
who’ll likely be served up soon as trade bait by the Colorado Rockies.