Wednesday, October 24, 2007

George "For The Most Part Is Retired"

That's the unremarkable revelation from Hank Steinbrenner. But since they've been acting as if acknowledging an elderly man's creeping fragility was somehow rude or impossible to admit, this counts as news. Maybe now everyone can stop saying things like George is still George and he's just as fiery and focused as ever, or the more polite Torre framing of the issue. (Torre's lately said that Steinbrenner was basically the same as the last few times they've been together which admits absolutely zero but implies the passage of time quite politely.)

This New York Times article on Hank Steinbrenner paints him as uninterested in working for the Yankees and certainly uninterested in baseball players (he preferred the horses; they don't talk back) until his father was edging towards retirement and upstarts like Steve Swindal seemed to be poised to take over. I'm realizing just how lucky I've been since moving to NYC in 1991 and becoming a passionate fan. Not only did the team become a dynasty and win and win, but they did it with class, something sorely lacking in the George Steinbrenner era.

Hank is picking up right where his dad left off, swaggering and bullying his way through a conversation as only a guy who never actually competed on the field can. (It's like an armchair warrior -- no one is braver than the guy who has never seen battle.) It's the day before the World Series and instead of showing some class and tipping his hat to the Red Sox, Hank acts as if it were the Yankees who mattered. if it weren't for the Yankees, the Red Sox would be just another team. Red Sox Nation? Ha! he admiringly quotes fellow putz Randy Levine who once denigrated the Red Sox for riding the Yankees coattails. And on and on and on he goes. Doesn't he realize the Red Sox are the ones who made it to the World Series and we're sitting at home? Wht right does he have to take away from the Series and mock a competitor who outplayed them on the eve of baseball's most important event? Pure lack of class and Bud Selig should publicly rap his knuckles. Unacceptable. God help me, I think I'm getting ulcers.

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