The Bergen Record's Bob Klapisch suggests that Joe Girardi will be on a short leash in 2009 :
If the Yankees are playing .500 ball in mid-May, the clock on his dismissal will be ticking loudly. This is the same pressure that Willie Randolph faced early in 2008, and look how the Mets responded: They got their manager fired as they sunk under .500. Girardi is getting one more chance to undo last year’s mistakes, including his over-reliance on team meetings, his inability to digest and process tough losses and his ill-advised policy of banning junk food in the clubhouse.I just love that the junk food policy is in the same sentence as the much more serious concerns about Girardi's managing. But people - especiallly athletes - get mad when you take away their treats.
And is Joe's edict the real reason CC Sabathia got a $9 million signing bonus - to stock up on snacks?
But I do think Girardi would be wise to loosen up on this issue. Heck, maybe he should tie the quality of junk food in the clubhouse to the quality of victories, the way he brought back ice cream as a treat last year when Mike Mussina reached 10 wins. Maybe a 1 to 5 fork rating system is in order here!
Besides, it could help with recruiting. Manny Ramirez is reportedly telling friends he's waiting on a three-year offer from the Yanks. If Girardi promises HoHos, Big Macs, and M&Ms on a regular basis, maybe Manny will be Manny without that $100 million salary he covets. Dare to dream!
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Former Yankee Dock Ellis died this weekend, and Jay Jaffe's Futility Infielder site has an interesting piece about his life. Ellis didn't just reportedly pitch a no-hitter on LSD; he also once wore curlers onto the field during pre-game warmups! How did I not know that tidbit? Wonder what Girardi would have thought of that maneuver, especially if Manny Ramirez tries it next year?
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Here's a fun quiz - see how many MLB teams you can name in three minutes. It's tougher than you'd think. (I got 27, and then my brain froze!)
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The 500 HR Club site is featuring a poignant video of Babe Ruth playing Santa Claus for children with polio. What makes it even more touching is that it would be Ruth's last Christmas himself, and you can hear his voice sound very ragged and rough.
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Finally, check out Zell's Pinstripe Blog to read his amazing story of how he met Phil Hughes on a baseball card message board.
Do you think Joe Girardi ought to relax his junk food ban? Leave us a comment about that, or anything else that's on your mind!