"The New York Yankee Road Trip From Hell"

Robert NelsonCorrespondent ISeptember 1, 2008


The Misery - The Horror - The Hank and Cashman Connection


Do you know which team with the largest of all markets, who all-too willingly takes its fans' money, but promises the moon and the stars...stinks and can't buy a win? 

What you gonna do big boy?   

Let me tell you what Hank is going to do: NOTHING. PERIOD.COM. NOTHING, just like he has all year, and just like he did last offseason...nothing. I know, at least he saved Phil Hughes and Ian Kennedy, right? The two boys both have ERAs now over 10!

If he was going to do something, then he would have already done it—starting back when Wang busted his ankle in Texas, circa mid June. Instead of getting a like-type pitcher to replace Wang, who went down for the season, Hank gave us Darrell Rasner.

When Joba got injured about four weeks ago, Hank gave us Carl Pavano. It is almost as if he WANTS to lose.

Now, Yankee fans sit in the Yankee Universe, with all of OUR money normally reserved for making an already bloated market all the much fatter. It's Sept. 1, 2008, and the playoffs have become another distant galaxy, and it is getting further away. 

I know one thing I won't be spending my money on for the rest of the year, and that's Hanks' Yanks. 

I have already bid farewell to the faded white facade. I patted the Cathedral's support beams and said my thank-you's to Yankee Stadium—a place that gave me the delight of any sports fan every year, for the last 15 years.

Now, Yankee fans sit and watch a shell of a team as they move to break the consecutive postseason streaks and end it at 14—breaking a record in this way is not a good thing—what's worse is that this is happening in the last year of the House that Babe Ruth Built.

Fans can play the blame game: blame this, blame that, blame this player, blame Girardi, blame who you want—but, the time has come to point the finger at the head honcho, the man, the big cheese, the king joker: Hank, who actually said in June that he liked the job Brian Cashman was doing. (!??!!)

Rest assured Yankee Universe: There is MISERY AHEAD. NY is a team not playing well, and their offense is the one constant that has stunk from the beginning of the season to now. Some wrote that "the bull-pen needed improvement," while other opined that "the rotation needed improvement"—and both got remedied with the rotation to a lesser degree.

With the main problem of the Yankees being offense, which has lasted from start to finish this year, getting a fix like Richie Sexson was just another "swing and miss" by soon-to-be "goner," Cash-man. What the hell was Cashman smoking that day, and where was Hank?

And don't be confused about it, either. The Yankees' offense is so bad that they sent Melky Cabrera back down to the minors...but they expected Richie FN Sexson to fix it?

As a card-carrying member of YANKEE UNIVERSE, I've thrown in the towel several times, but like true love, I can't bring myself to walk away once and for all. I always find myself sadly looking back. 

Fans must all face reality, and I'll show you how hard the remaining season will be.

Sept. 1 at Detroit - Please try to score some runs for Sydney Ponson.

Sept. 2-4 at Tampa Bay - Don't make me cry. 

Sept. 5-7 at Seattle - Take a big, long flight and see how that works for ya.

Sept. 8-10 at Anaheim - Hottest team in baseball. One sick SOB made this schedule.

September 12-14 at home, against Tampa Bay - That ass will probably be sore by then.

This is indeed a horror movie. A bad dream that one does not wake up from. It is the Wes Craven version of Groundhog Day, but instead of it being Bill Murray stuck in a town with repeating days, Yankee fans find themselves hoping for a postseason appearance in the last year of Ruth but are battling the GM and owner, who are just laughing at us fans while in our misery. 

Cashman might as well be called Kashman Bates of the horror movie Misery, because the fans are now tied down to a team that he and Hank built, and now they are holding fans hostage. Much like Cathy Bates, who forced James Caan to write a new novel while being held captive as he was crippled, Kashman Bates has forced fans to support and pay for a new idea too: the youth movement.

And just as the fans had the hope of making the postseason, by signing the likes of Gary Sheffield or Barry Bonds to permanently fix the offense, "Kathy" caught us hoping for a way to that postseason in the final year, and the sledge hammer came crushing down, breaking our dreams of postseason play into mere shards.

They passed on what I called a must sign, and then they passed on the cure for the rotation too—almost proving that they want to lose this year. 

Maybe Yankee management wants to lop off some heads and let them role as they break the streak in order to have an excuse to rid the team of some pretty big fan favorites next year—Pettitte, Moose, and Giambi's stars are fading already.

Will the Yankees make the playoffs? I'd rather go buy a lottery ticket, and it kills me to even say it. 

Bottom line, YANKEE UNIVERSE: Management didn't do what was needed to do, when it was needed to do it (Yogi helped me write that).   

Now the Yankee fans are paying the price for being naive and optimistic. We are paying the price, as we always do—after all, it is OUR MONEY—but this time the goods are no-good. 

It's one thing to buy into a winner, but it's quite different paying to see a loser (no offense Pavano). It is our money and NOW, we can choose to spend it elsewhere, like college football and send the Yanks a message. 

Or maybe fans can go along with Cashman and Hank - we could demand that they keep Carl Pavano—because he is sooo good—that's only my attempt at offering the reader some comic relief, but don't tell Brian Hoch of MLB.com—he likes Carl—which is as funny as listening to Eddie Murphy's Raw, "Wanna lick? Psych!"

Without fans, there is no Yankee Universe to destroy because Hank and the Steinbrenners would not have the money they now have. It is not Hank's world, he is just a steward. It is our place....The Yankee Fan Universe, and maybe it is time we showed management our displeasure of this, the final year of OUR stadium.


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