Guest Bloggers: ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball Team

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Guest Bloggers: ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball Team

With ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball winding down for another season, their announcing team of Joe Morgan, Jon Miller, and Steve Phillips took some time to analyze the New York baseball scene for Hot Stove New York. (Note: This is a fictional conversation)

Joe Morgan: The Yankees are looking pretty good, having the best record in baseball, and they just clinched a spot in the postseason with last night’s win. But you really can’t compare them to the teams of old.

I mean, do they have Johnny Bench on their team? [laughs] Derek Jeter does a decent job but give me Dave Concepcion any day of the week. You can throw any stat at me you want about the Yankees—you know I don’t believe in stats [laughs].

When I played we didn’t have stats. We didn’t know what batting averages were let alone WARP and whatever else these kids are talking about nowadays [laughs]. In fact, we didn’t even keep score, but the Reds still won every game we played and were the World Series champs for 10 straight years.

Steve Phillips: Joe, I think you guys only won the World Series twice.

Jon Miller: Carlos Bel-TRON!

Joe Morgan: Like I said, we didn’t have all these newfangled stats like runs and wins, so who’s to say we didn’t win 10 World Series?

Let’s take a look at Joe Girardi. He’s really turned the Yankees around after missing the playoffs last season, but does he compare to Sparky Anderson? Of course not. You can’t put those guys in the same class. I mean Sparky guest-starred on WKRP in Cincinnati and The White Shadow, and in the same season, no less. Can Girardi do something like that? [laughs]

Jon Miller: Carlos Bel-TRON!

Steve Phillips: Speaking of the Yankees, the Mets are really a dysfunctional mess. It wasn’t like that when I was running the team. We won those five World Series in a row, and it was all because of me.

Joe Morgan: Actually, the Mets didn’t win any World Series when you were the GM. How come you never got another GM job, Steve?

Jon Miller: Saaaaaaaaffffe!

Steve Phillips: Well, we don’t need to go into that, Joe. There were no scandals or mismanagement when I was with the Mets. We were a well-run machine. Those little secretary peccadillos I was rumored to have? That was a setup by Bobby Valentine. He donned his disguise with the fake mustache and framed me. It was his fault. Everything bad that went on in those years was his fault. His fault, his fault, his fault!!

Anyway, if I were still running the Mets, I would have all their hitters get more hits and hit more home runs. When I was playing, my appraoch at the plate. . .

Jon Miller: Carlos Bel-TRON!

Joe Morgan: Did you ever play in the majors, Steve? I did. I was one of the greatest players ever. [laughs]

Steve Phillips: No, I’m talking about when I played in Pony League. I always went to the plate trying to get a hit. That was my approach.

What the Mets need to do now is trade Beltran, David Wright, and Jose Reyes for Mo Vaughn. And they should see if they can coax Roger Cedeno out of retirement. That’s how I would fix this mess.

Jon Miller: Carlos Bel-TRON!

Joe Morgan: See, the Reds never got themselves into a mess like that because we didn’t make any mistakes. Players back in my day always hustled, made the right decisions, and never did anything wrong.

That’s why every team in the ’60s and ’70s never lost a game. [laughs] The whole league went undefeated. And we did it all without stats. In fact, everything was better 35 years ago—sports, movies, TV, Pete Rose, the weather.

The only thing that can save the Mets now is if they sign Cesar Geronimo and Pedro Borbon.

Steve Phillips: Well said, Joe.

Joe Morgan: And, of course, those last four Yankee World Championships come with an asterisk because Johnny Bench wasn’t on their team. How can you win a World Series without Johnny Bench? It’s just not possible. [laughs]

Jon Miller: Carlos Bel-TRON!

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