Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Melk Money

Before I go on to glow about Melky Cabrera, I want to give Randy Johnson a new nickname. I hope he turns back the clock and becomes dominant again....I really do....but I don't like him. I don't think he's enjoyable to watch, or cheer. In fact, since he's been such a cranky guy throughout his career, and since he also stinks so much now, I'd like to imagine that we can adjust his issues with a little "Weird Science" and put him in his place. Until we see "The Big Unit" again, Randy Johnson will be heretoafter referred to as "Chet" at Canyon of Heroes.

Now for Melky. See what happens when you give a guy a shot to show his stuff on an everyday basis? It doesn't always work out, but in the case of Robinson Cano we got a gem, and we're also seeing some fine hitting by young Cabrera. He had a huge 11 pitch at bat a couple of days ago, and 4 RBIs in the series clincher at Fenway. What he did in this series stands in stark contrast to the fumbling around he did in the outfield last season. 3-7, 1 run, 4 RBIs, 1 BB in 2 games. Nothing builds confidence like a strong 3 game set in enemy territory, especially when you hit lead off, drive in 4 runs, and grab the attention of the fans and media in a positive way in the deciding contest.

In New York you want to get off on the right foot or your struggles are compounded by the glare of the gigantic spotlight. In contrast, if you succeed you are rewarded with the euphoria that goes with Yankee glory. It's true other places, but my impression is that there's no place like New York for this kind of intensity. Maybe Philly.

Manny Ramirez was a force to behold. I like Manny when he's "being Manny", which is to say that I feel happy when he's bumbling around like a moron because it means that's more prominent than his hitting. When Manny is being "MVP Manny", I wish he'd go away. Such was the case in this series, in which he hit 8-12 with 4 home runs, 5 runs, and 10 RBIs. The Red Sox scored 20 runs in 3 games and Manny drove in half of them. The only saving grace for the Bombers is that David Ortiz managed to balance out those freakish numbers by going a combined 2-13 with 1 run, 3RBIs, 5 strikeouts, and only 1 walk. Rare, indeed.

Now we start a series with the Omaha Royals of the Pacific Coast League. Mike Mussina will take on Scott Elarton in what will hopefully be a walk through the park after back to back series with the Mets and Red Sox.