April 30, 2007

Now Playing Third Base For the Yankees: Number One, Steve Francis. Number One.

Well, the good news is the Mets are getting excellent starting pitching -- a solid outing from Glavine yesterday, and yet another gem from SuperMaine today -- and eking out wins despite a somewhat slumping offense. Julio Franco had a nifty defensive play too, when, knowing the Nationals' batter was going to bunt, he charged in as Maine threw, fielded it perfectly, and nailed the runner at third. I'm fairly sure he's the oldest player ever to do this, because, I mean, what are the odds? But, more on the Mets tomorrow, because there's an elephant in the blog post. (I was going to write "a pinstriped elephant," but fortunately, I stopped myself in time.)

So the bad news is... well, where do you start with the Yankees? Despite a desperately needed win yesterday, thanks to the much-maligned Kei "Nuke" Igawa (after Jeff Karstens' fibula was broken on the first damn play of the game), they lost again today. Behind Chien-Ming Wang and against Julian "Batshit" Tavarez, no less: that stings. And the grounds crew is going to start finding little bits and pieces of the bullpen lying around the mound pretty soon, which will just take all the fun out of "YMCA".

The vultures are circling around Joe Torre, but I don't honestly think he'll be fired, unless this keeps up for weeks (the mind boggles). Not that I doubt the stories citing Yankee officials who say Steinbrenner is "thinking about" firing Torre. He probably is, in much the same way that I was "thinking about" hurling my TV off the fire escape this afternoon. But Steinbrenner is obviously in poor health, whatever his PR rep may say -- there's a reason he hasn't spoken in public in such a long time, and it's not because he got shy all of a sudden. I just don't see him grabbing power back from Cashman right now, and I definitely don't see Cashman firing Torre in the near future. Hey, I've been wrong before. But I don't think it'll happen.

An aphorism I've really come to loathe over the course of my life is "it's always darkest before the dawn." Nice thought, but not remotely true. No matter how bad things get, it could always, always be worse. Much worse. (Don't worry, this will never happen. But just the suggestion is enough to give me night terrors. Damn you, Steve Swindal!)

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