Thursday, October 14, 2010

Texas papers (and some NYC journalists as well) stir up stuff against Yankees

I wrote an article for The Faster Times about Nolan Ryan, the Texas Rangers, and that whole "claw and antlers" thing. You can check out the article here. In the process of doing research for the story, I came across some pretty silly articles in the Texas media. Strangely, though, some of the more ridiculous ones were reprints from the New York media. Here are a few examples.

The graphic on the right is from the Dallas Morning News, used to illustrate an anti-Yankee photo contest.  Refresh my memory though. Who was it again who paid Alex Rodriguez $252 million in the first place? Oh, yeah, it was Tom Hicks and the Texas Rangers!

I saw one particularly nasty column on A-Rod on the Dallas Morning News' website. And wouldn't you know it? It was from Tara Sullivan of the Bergen Record! She wrote about Alex's time with Texas:
Three steroid-fueled seasons bloated A-Rod's personal stat column, but the obscene largesse of the biggest individual contract in pro sports history did little to get the lowly Rangers out of the cellar....


They never got close to this point with Rodriguez, whose justification for cheating was the pressure of living up to the enormous contract. The Rangers still are paying for their extravagance, with former owner Thomas Hicks forced to sell the team to the current group led by former ace Nolan Ryan. The franchise went into bankruptcy as part of the sale, and record show that the largest single unsecured creditor on the rolls was none other than Rodriguez.
Yes, that unsecured creditor fact is technically true, but Hicks' financial problems ($500+ million) were much bigger and deeper than the $27 or so million the Rangers owed A-Rod. Sullivan should know better, but it's easier to just blame A-Rod!

The article also makes a big deal how A-Rod said this week that "boos are compliments." Guess Sullivan wasn't aware that Derek Jeter, with his "fans don't boo nobodies" talk, has said the same thing for years.

I was also reading some of the Texas Rangers' fans comments online. They're down on A-Rod, but Teixeira is just as much of a villain to them!

I did agree with DMN writer Evan Grant's evisceration of NYC tabloid columnist Filip Bondy's over the top take on the series. Bondy wrote:
The Rangers have retired exactly one player's jersey (aside from Jackie Robinson's) and attempted to counter George M. Steinbrenner with George W. Bush in the owner's box.


All they've ever had was Nolan Ryan, and they've ridden him like an urban cowboy on a mechanical bull.


Yes, this has been a sad, losing franchise for half a century, but not in a charming way like the Cubbies. The Rangers are still hoping to emerge from the darkest of dark ages now under the guidance of Ryan and new owner Chuck Greenberg - who happens to be from Pittsburgh, so you can imagine how much he knows about building a decent baseball team.


The Yanks should win this series just by throwing their pinstriped uniforms onto the field and reading from a few pages of The Baseball Encyclopedia.
I hate that kind of drivel, especially from a sportswriter who I know would rather be watching figure skating and soccer than covering the Yankees. And writing that "the Yanks should win this series just by throwing their pinstriped uniforms onto the field and reading from a few pages of The Baseball Encyclopedia" is just asking for bad karma.

So I appreciate that Evan Grant rightfully criticized this New York nonsense, saying, "Congratulations, Mr. Bondy, if you could just toss in how we ride horses to work, wear cowboy boots all the time and shoot guns in the middle of dusty streets at high noon, you would have thrown the equivalent of a perfect game when it comes to tripe, cliche and mud-slinging. It's another example of why we in the newspaper business are in such trouble. This is what so many of us stoop to in order to draw page views." Bravo, Mr. Grant!

What do you think? Tell us about it!

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