Author Archive

Greedy vs. Gritty: How the Baseball World Still Views the New York Yankees Today

How do you decipher between a team being greedy or a team being gutty? Do you have to be a world champion franchise to be greedy? Do you have to be a franchise that has been through hard times to be gritty? Who placed these titles on those teams? I surely would like to know.

It is a crime to the baseball world when the Yankees spend and they’re viewed as bad for baseball. Why is this? Is it because of the 27 world championships? The tradition? The success? The proud organization that every organization in sports envisions being one day?

We all know of the blockbuster deals of CC Sabathia and AJ Burnett. The Yankees outbid everybody. Nobody discusses the flexibility of the Yankees that offseason though and the salaries coming off the books that allowed them to make those signings: a new deal for Andy Pettitte, Jason Giambi’s contract was up, Bobby Abreu’s, Carl “Idle” Pavano, etc. Plenty of money for the Yankees to spend. The trade for Nick Swisher was rarely talked about. Why wasn’t this a gritty move by Brian Cashman? He sent Wilson Betemit and a prospect for an everyday outfielder who was a vital part of a world championship team.


The Signing of Mark Teixeira

The world came crashing down the day Tex signed with the Yankees. It was reported earlier in the day that he would make an announcement, which was reportedly just between the Washington Nationals and the Boston Red Sox, of where he would be playing that season. As the day progressed, and the time came near for Tex’s announcement, the Yankees quietly swooped in and signed Teixeira to an eight-year, $180 million contract. It was a huge deal for the Yankees but apparently bad for baseball. The Yankees were ruining the game.

Let’s look at the signing of Carl Crawford with the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox signed Crawford to a seven-year, $142 million deal. Reportedly, it was $40 million more than what the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim offered, who had Crawford at the top of their list this offseason. Word around the baseball industry was that this was a gritty move by Theo Epstein and the Red Sox organization. The way he took Crawford out from underneath Arte Moreno and the Angels.

What is the difference between the Yankees’ signing of Teixeira and the Red Sox’ signing of Crawford (minus the price tags, which are out of the question because of the type of player Tex was then vs. Crawford now)? Why is Theo’s move gritty and Cashman’s move greedy?


The Trade of Adrian Gonzalez

The Red Sox have eyed Gonzalez ever since they missed out on Teixeira in 2008. Jed Hoyer, the GM of the San Diego Padres, worked with Theo Epstein in Boston as an assistant GM and are said to be very close. The Padres shipped the face of their franchise in Gonzalez to the Red Sox for pitching prospect Casey Kelly, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, and the cousin of Mets center fielder Carlos Beltran, Reymond Fuentes.

Many believe the Padres did not get enough in return to justify trading one of the best first baseman in baseball. Was this greedy on the part of Theo Epstein once again? Not according to the baseball world. Once again this was a gritty and savvy move by Epstein.


The Signing of Cliff Lee

The move shocked the baseball world. He took less years and less money to rejoin the team he “fell in love with” after spending 2.5 MONTHS as a Phillie, but ultimately losing in the World Series to the Yankees. He joined the forces of Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels, which will probably go down as the greatest rotations on paper in baseball history.

After losing Jayson Werth to the Washington Nationals, Ruben Amaro, GM of the Phillies, needed to add a right-handed bat in the outfield to complement the left-handed heavy hitters in the middle of their lineup. Instead of addressing their need, he went with a luxury. The Phillies did not need Lee but agreed to a deal with him anyway. Was this a greedy move by Amaro and the Phillies? Not what I have heard. It is a gritty move to sweep in and steal him from the Yankees and Texas Rangers who were extremely interested in his services.


Red Sox fans view themselves as “Red Sox Nation.” To the baseball world they are viewed as the “Nation of Gloom.” Any move they make is a gutty and savvy one. The Red Sox can do no wrong in improving their team. How could they? They were without a World Series title for 86 years. They have gone through more heartbreak than a girl in a drama/love film.

What about the Phillies? Not greedy on their part? Already having one of the best rotations in baseball and just adding another ace is savvy? Oh right, that is okay because they finished third or worse eight times within the last 16 years.

The baseball world needs to get off the idea that the Yankees are ruining baseball. Take a step back and look around. Teams have the capability to spend the dollars they are bringing in. The Nationals dished out a huge contract to Jayson Werth. Does it really take a few leaks of records of income for commissioner Bud Selig to demand teams like the Pittsburgh Pirates and Florida Marlins to spend their money and not slip it into their back pockets?

Just because the tradition of the Yankees franchise is so rich, doesn’t mean every move they make to improve their team is a greedy one. The mission of their organization is to invest their money on a championship-caliber team. Don’t avoid shining a spotlight on every other team’s moves that help them win because they have had struggles in their organization’s history.

Read more MLB news on

Same Faces-New Places: MLB Top Free Agents and Their Landing Spots

Baseball is the only sport, in my opinion, where the season lasts 365 days a year. Major League Baseball’s offseason is unlike any other.

The “Hot Stove” is always cooking something.

Nothing like going to bed with a rumor and waking up to a new player on your team.

Teams can officially start negotiating with free agents come 12:01 Sunday morning. Teams that are likely to spend are, of course, the New York Yankees, who are looking to get younger and get back to the Fall Classic.

The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are looking to have a bounce back year and regain their AL West crown.

Begin Slideshow

MLB League Rivalry: Improved Pitching Marks End for AL Superiority Over NL?

Two perfect games. One near perfect game (How near is near? Blown call on the 27th out “near”).  Three regular season no-hitters. One no-hitter in the playoffs, first since 1956. The 2010 Major League Baseball season has been headlined as “The Return of the Pitcher.” 

Along with 2010 being the year of the pitcher, this year in baseball saw the return of the National League.

In the 80th mid-summer classic in Anaheim, California, the National League came out victorious for the first time since 1996.  National and American league pitchers combined to scatter 13 hits while only giving up a combined four runs. Lineups that consisted of former MVP’s, former batting champions, former Rookie of the Year award winners, future MVP players were limited to only four runs combined.

The 2010 MLB Playoffs were headlined by dominant pitching. Roy Halladay opened up the MLB playoffs by no-hitting the Cincinnati Reds in his first playoff start. Tim Lincecum opened up the NLDS series between the San Francisco Giants and the Atlanta Braves with a complete game shutout. Cliff Lee gave up two runs in three starts in the ALDS and the ALCS and only walked one batter in 24 innings pitched. Colby Lewis who has pitched to a career 5.27 ERA, who found himself pitching for Hiroshima Carp of Japan’s Central League for two seasons, became the seventh pitcher to defeat the New York Yankees twice in a playoff series, pitched to a 1.27 ERA and helped the Texas Rangers reach the World Series for the first time. Matt Cain earned a 0.00 ERA throughout the 2010 postseason in route to winning his first World Series championship.

As soon as the San Francisco Giants and Texas Rangers punched their tickets to the Fall Classic, many were quick to write off the Giants and were ready to hand the commissioner’s trophy over to Nolan Ryan and the Texas Rangers. I was part of that group, and as soon as the Rangers took a 2-0 lead in Game 1, I said the Rangers were going to be celebrating last Sunday night as World Series Champions.

I mean, come on; how could you not assume an outcome like that? Texas as a team hit .304, slugged .512 and had an OPS of .890 against the Yankees in the ALCS.

The Giants, on the other hand, beat the heavily favored Phillies. That was no small feat as they took care of Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels.

Still, the Rangers were the favorite in the World Series. The Giants pitching staff held the Rangers unforgiving lineup to a .190 average, .288 slugging, and an OPS of .546. Scan a few lines up and look at the comparisons of the two series for the Rangers. Do we still use the excuse that the team is rusty after not playing for four days?

The mid-summer classic and the playoffs are the two biggest stages for Major League Baseball. The two showcased tremendous pitching and in each of them the National League came out winners.  To me, the resurgence of pitching will in fact take some “fire power” away from the AL as the notorious power hitting league.

The Giants once again proved that good pitching will always beat good hitting. The AL has developed some good young pitching, but if it continues to rely on strong lineups and power hitting stars, the National League will continue to thrive in each of the two “big stages” in the baseball season.


Read more MLB news on

Copyright © 1996-2010 Kuzul. All rights reserved.
iDream theme by Templates Next | Powered by WordPress