May 24, 2007
ONLY MORE SO:
Olney saw end of Yanks’ dynasty before anyone else (BILL REYNOLDS, 5/24/07, Providence Journal)
Think of it this way: If you took away the pinstripes and the mystique, took away the history and the amount of money spent on payroll, would anyone be in awe of this particular team? Would anyone right now be thinking of them as a great team?
In fact, it was two years ago that Buster Olney, who covered the Yankees for five years, wrote The Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty, a book whose premise was that the Yankees already were a very different team than the one that lost in the 2001 World Series to Arizona, that we were seeing the last days of the dynasty, like the morning after the party, just the stragglers and the empty bottles left.
It was Olney’s contention that the glory days had been built on a foundation of great pitching and a core of players who had all come of age together, a core whose whole was greater than the sum of the parts. In short, it was a team with a shared purpose, run by a manager who both trusted his players and had their respect.
But all of that was gone now, as the Yankees tried to buy the future with a succession of free agents. To the point they began to resemble more of an all-star team than a team that had grown up together, some who bought into the team’s ethos, some who didn’t. All in an environment that had no patience with anything other than winning world championships, everyone from the owner, to the fans, to the tabloids that screamed out every morning with their big bold headlines.
“The others in the Yankee clubhouse had inherited the legacy, and like second-generation scions, they found that everything they did was held up against the daunting standard of years before,” wrote Olney. “The burden of those expectations weighed on the team, especially the newcomers.”
It was Olney’s contention that what we were seeing in 2004 was the dynasty’s last gasp, an attempt to cling to something that was already gone.
Now it’s three years later, and it’s only more so.
The two most salient facts in the book are that the winning team was basically a creation of Stick Michael while George was suspended and that once the guys from that squad started leaving Jeter and Torre checked out emotionally. Posted by Orrin Judd at May 24, 2007 6:29 AM