One of the aspects of Yankees fandom that I’d like to delve into more in 2011 is the media coverage of the team, particularly on the television end.

Don’t worry, I’m not going to turn into a crusty old curmudgeon like Phil Mushnick, yelling at Al Leiter to stop leaving bags of poop on my front porch. At least not yet.

The telecast is the filter by which most fans not attending the games experience the Yankees, and seeing how I enjoy making inappropriate inferences about both Ken Singleton’s hairline and Kim Jones’ personal life, I think it’s time to bring these thoughts to a public forum.

Today, we’ll take a look at some recent news out of the YES broadcast booth.

We learned from Joel Sherman on Tuesday that David Cone has either agreed or is in talks to return to YES for 25 games this season. Cone, if you recall, provided smart and candid analysis for the network from 2008-09. Perhaps too smart and candid it turned out, as his exit was tied to organizational discontent with opinions deemed to be too negative at times.

Let’s try to glance over the disconcerting nature of that reality for a second, and instead celebrate the dual good news of Yankee brass coming to its senses as well as Cone’s return likely coming at the expense of his overmatched replacement, Tino Martinez.

As a Donnie Baseball disciple, Tino will always hold an undeserved black place in my heart. But just to be clear here, said darkened valve has nothing to do with my satisfaction about his presumed ouster. That’s actually more on account of Martinez having the on-camera savvy of Brick from Anchorman. “I don’t know what we’re yelling about!”

Anyway, I’m excited that Cone will be back. I quite like Michael Kay as play-by-play man, but Singleton is a bit dry and John Flaherty can be annoying with the incessant references to his middling playing career. Hey Flash, no offense, but you weren’t Carlton Fisk.

Lastly, say this for Cone: Not many guys can have a “Sex scandals” sub-section in their Wikipedia profile and still come off as an affable and decent human being. Not bad, Coney. Not bad at all.

If you have thoughts on the YES guys or even the 400-year-old invincible behemoth of the transistor radio they call John Sterling, please share your feelings in the comment section or at

Stray observations…

  • I’m not sure if the Yankees have thought this far ahead, but putting the beefy Bartolo Colon on the same team as fellow trans-fat enthusiast Andruw Jones probably isn’t the best idea. This would be like asking a recovering coke addict to live in the studio with Oasis during the recording of Be Here Now. You’re just begging for a relapse.
  • I’m starting to wonder if Brian Cashman is in the midst of some kind of WWE heel turn. First, he takes a few cheap shots at Derek Jeter during the shortstop’s contract negotiations. Then he gets all passive-aggressive to the media regarding management at the Rafael Soriano press conference. Now he’s tweaking the captain again, unnecessarily speculating the battle plan for booting Jeter from shortstop at a WFAN breakfast event. If this ends with Cashman super-kicking Hal Steinbrenner through the Barber Shop window I’m going to be very excited.
  • Johnny Damon and Manny Ramirez are teammates again, having signed on with the Rays to entertain the dozens of die-hards in attendance at Tropicana Field in 2011. I was surprised the Yankees didn’t take a closer look at Ramirez, until I remembered a) he’s an aging doofus of a human and b) he might make Marcus Thames look like Ichiro in the outfield.
  • Some baseball people apparently still believe Andy Pettitte will pitch for the Yankees this season. “Why would he be working out if he’s not playing?” I’m conflicted since I already purchased my official Mark Prior jersey.
  • Derek Jeter was reportedly working out in a batting cage on Wednesday. This may be the least newsworthy item of information you will ever come across.
  • Well, besides this. I’m telling you, Hank is going to bring down the Yankees. I’m thinking it will be a power-of-attorney type snafu, like how Paulie lost Stallone’s fortune in Rocky V. Man, that movie sucked.

Dan Hanzus writes three columns a week on his New York Yankees site, River & Sunset. He can be reached at Follow Dan on Twitter @danhanzus.

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