May 24, 2007


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

And yet . . . they keep winning 95 games every year.

If that's the end of the dynasty I think a lot of teams would sign up.

Matsui had some pertinant points after last night's game on Jeter for all y'all haters out there.

Meanwhile . . . Schilling looks awful. And I watched the Portland/Trenton game last night and bad news for Sawx fans is that Buchholz doesn't look like a future ace -- beanpole skinny, not much life on the fastball, tho wicked curve and decent slider -- more Clippard than Hughes.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 24, 2007 8:15 AM

$200 million wins some games. Teams win rings.

The Sox have the luxury, unlike the Yanks, of allowing Buchholz to develop. Snyder, Lester, Gabbard and Hansack can all fill-in capably this year. Indeed, Snyder would be the Yankees' ace.

It's probably uinfair to the fans who paid money for this series, but it mattered so little to the Soxthat they skipped their two best starters.

Posted by: oj at May 24, 2007 10:23 AM

jim - I couldn't find the Matsui quote...where did you see it?

Posted by: foos at May 24, 2007 10:27 AM

Here foos:

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 24, 2007 1:45 PM

Yes, Buchholz needs a whole lot of developing.

Tho I suspect the Sawx will be rushing him into the bigs a la Hansen and delCarmen and Lester at some point in August, as the reality of an aged starting staff and an epic collapse sets in.

Snyder? Not only would Snyder not be the Yanks ace, but he wouldn't have chance of even breaking into a rotation of Clemens, Wang, Hughes, Moose, and Pettite.

A staff of Cheeseburger Schilling (who makes Moose look like Cy Young), Wake, and Blister Beckett otoh? Now that's a rotation that desperately needs a guy claimed off waivers like the Snydester.

Hughes, Wang, Kennedy, Chamberlain, and Betances. That's the reality that the Sawx will have to live with from 2010 to 2020 or so. Relish these few months (April and May) in 07 Sawx nation, relish them.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 24, 2007 1:54 PM

Don't say cheesaburger and relish too loudly or Jaba will bite Ian's arm off....

Posted by: oj at May 24, 2007 2:33 PM

He's a cornfed Nebraska boy and they're keeping him hungry for the Red Sox. Imagine him staring down Ortiz or Manny with a knife and fork. Intimidation...

Posted by: Matt Murphy at May 24, 2007 3:33 PM

Like Moby Dick.

Posted by: oj at May 24, 2007 7:00 PM

Murph's on board. Yeah.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 24, 2007 7:30 PM

Of course: Moby Dick is the colossus and Captain Ahab is the obsessed lunatic intent on getting the better of him. In other words, most of the time it's a perfect metaphor for the mindset behind a Yankees-Red Sox race.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at May 25, 2007 2:52 AM

and the whale is Evil.

Posted by: oj at May 25, 2007 6:44 AM