Monday, July 16, 2007

Racist, No. Incompetent, Yes.

Imagine the San Antonio Spurs relegating Manu Ginobili to the D-League and only playing Tony Parker in garbage time. In their stead, the Spurs chose to give their minutes to Beno Udrih and Michael Finley's corpse. This would never happen, because RC Buford and Gregg Popovich are a competent general manager/coach tandem.

The fanciful scenario discussed above is analogous to Cashman and Torre's mismanagement of the Yankees bullpen. I won't waste your time further rehashing a point that I already made, when I posited that Chris Britton and Edwar Ramirez are the 2nd and 3rd best relievers in the Yankees organization.

Since then, Cashman has done half of his job, by promoting Edwar Ramirez on July 1st. Joe Torre has used him twice in his 16 days on the roster. Meanwhile, Luis Vizcaino has appeared in 8 games in the month of July. Scott Proctor has pitched 7 times and Farnsworth has been called upon 6 times, over the same period. Joe Torre has not seen fit to use Edwar Ramirez at all, since July 6th. If he pitches tomorrow, he will be doing so on 11 days rest. Nothing says "You're a valued member of the team" like nearly two weeks of inactivity.

You would think Ramirez must have gotten bombed in his two appearances for him to be so deeply buried. It is not so. In fact, in his first outing, he struck out the side in his only inning of work. Both Michael Cuddyer and Justin Morneau were victimized by his unhittable change-up. Watching Ramirez's Major League debut, I was all but certain that the Yankees had the answer to their eighth inning woes. In his next outing, Ramirez gave up a walk, a hit, and a run (Gasp!!!) in an inning and a third and hasn't been heard from since.

Joe Torre has no faith in Ramirez, because
a) he is not yet 30 years old (Joe loves him some grizzled relievers),
b) he has not scene him pitch in a big spot (Joseph Heller wrote farcical books about such situations)
c) Ramirez wasn't labelled a "blue chip" prospect
and possibly
d) he looks like a dork.
None of the above are valid reasons not to give the guy an opportunity. Well, maybe the dork thing is a good reason. Nobody likes dorks.

Yesterday I stated that I didn't believe Joe Torre was a racist. I still don't. But if it will get him fired, I am willing to start the rumor that I overheard him muttering "the n word" under his breath, as he passed a group of break dancers in Penn Station.

No comments: