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What Is Up With the New York Yankees?

Michael BrandesContributor IApril 20, 2009

NEW YORK - APRIL 19:  Jorge Posada #20 of the New York Yankees is congratulated by teammates after he hit a pinch hit two-run home run in the seventh inning of their game against the Cleveland Indians at Yankee Stadium on April 19, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  The hit was reviewed by instant replay, and was ruled a home run.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

Is it a lack of talent? No...I don't think so. They still have the biggest payroll in baseball. So what is it that keeps them from looking like the team on the field that they look to be on paper?

I don't know. I watch Jeter and Posada and study them in their interviews, and they just have the same monotone replies to questions asked. Maybe it's because they have reporters in their face most of the time and it's just the way they respond now.

But I don't see the fire anymore. I haven't seen the fire from these guys in years...and coincidentally that's when they last won a championship. Come to think of it, that's also when Paul O'Neill hung up his spikes.

OK...so Jeter is the captain. I have nothing against Jeter. but he just isn't captain material. He's respected, sure...but he isn't a leader, and that is what a captain should be. He's the most laid back of all the current Yankees. I hear interviews with him where he says that anything less than a world championship is a failure in his mind and in the mind of the organization.

All right, Derek...if that's true, then show us the desire to do that. How about getting mad when your team blows the lead because of a stupid mistake? Or how about getting mad when you fail to come through in a clutch situation?

I see a bit of that fire in Posada, but he seems to try hard to not show it. He looks to be following the example of Jeter and Rivera. When Mo blows a save, his reaction is..."Oh well, that happens sometimes. I'm just going to forget about it." Huh? How can you not be mad at yourself over a situation like that?

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If the Yankee attitude is truly to win a World Series every year, then how can any of these guys just ignore a series like this past weekend where the Indians humiliated them 15-5 and 22-4? Or letting Carl Pavano, the guy who screwed them out of a small fortune for three years, shut them down for most of a game? How can they ignore the Rays beating them last week 15-5?

Folks...this is a young season, and the Yankees have suffered three butt kickings that would have the worst teams in the league furious with themselves and showing it! Yet, the Yankees act like there are no problems and everything will just straighten itself out without anyone standing up and showing some fire.

Where are the leaders? Where is that guy who gets mad over a 22-4 loss and at least throws his glove, or maybe knocks over a water cooler?

Paul O'Neill...please come back!!

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