Hey NY Highlander Fans, You Think This Post Season Is Bad, You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet

I’ve always felt that once you sign on to be a fan of a sports team, you’re a fan for life. Like a marriage, good times and bad, and till death do us part.  Fan support has been a big topic this weekend as for the first that I can remember a professional post season sporting event in NYC was played before a lot of empty seats, and in all places, Highlanders Stadium.

I was very surprised to see so many tickets available for Games 1 and 2 of the ALCS games in the Bronx. The tickets that were available on Stub Hub were way under face value as well so what the hell happened?

Myself and Mike Silva discussed this last night on our Sports Media Watchdog Podcast going over many different reasons from cost of tickets, commuting, and traffic all play a part but the feeling I get is many Highlanders fans just have no faith at all in their team and with Derek Jeter done for the remainder of the post season, it seems the fans have packed it in for the year just like the Highlanders offense.

It was discussed a lot during the season as the Bronx Bastards were hitting home run after home run many fans and media types had concern that this club was not built for the post season where most game runs are at a premium.  The Highlanders look at playing small ball like it’s an affront on their manhood, but a bunt here, a stolen base there, a little hit and run might be how they have to go after the Tigers. The Highlander pitching has been superb to the point where I feel C.C. Sabathia is underrated as a pitcher and big game performer and you cannot say enough about the job Hiroki Kuroda did on 3 days’ rest. Problem is I can’t find a Highlander fan who shares my feelings, all they see is an impotent offense and their Captain lying prone on the infield dirt.

The Highlander fans have really turned to heels when it comes to their team, the players, especially Nick Swisher are having a tough time accepting the taunts and cat calls from a fan base that has “if we don’t win the World Series the season is a failure” mentality that management and the teams PR department has branded into their heads.  This is what happens when you promote ad nausea that you are the 27 Time World Champions, and put up billboards like this around the city and sell obnoxious t –shirts and generally act like no other team in baseball is worthy of being in the same league as you. Even your fans stop buying that bullshit.

Problem for the Highlanders is their fan base is not prepared for failure. The Highlander fan of my generation who remembers when attendance figures of 3,000 or less at the REAL Highlander Stadium were the norm and how the Mets were the darlings of New York, knows that as great as the winning feels, the cycle does bring you to hard times as well, but you stick with your team thick or thin. The new Generation of Highlander fan that jumped on the bandwagon the last 20 to 25 years doesn’t have the heart to support a losing team.  Let’s face it with the combination of age, Hal Steinbrenner looking to cut payroll, a barren farm system and the teams in their division not only getting better but they also smell Highlander blood in the water knowing that the once mighty New York Highlanders are no longer feared.

It happens; the great Core players that led the Highlanders to championships are gone. Bernie Williams, Jorge Posada, Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera are the Four Horsemen of the great Highlander run. Rivera and Jeter will be back but they are both will be coming off severe injury and an age where players decline rather than improve. There could be tough times ahead for the Highlanders but just think fans you have a whole lot of Highlander Classics and Highlander-ograhpy’s  to watch on YUCK until the next cycle of winning comes along hopefully that won’t come around for a long long time.

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News and Views

 

 

 

NEWS: Mariano Rivera tears his ACL

UH OH! First let me say I feel very badly for Mariano as he is the greatest closer of all time and from all you read and hear he’s a first class guy and I won’t criticize him or the Highlanders for allowing him to shag fly balls in batting practice since he has been doing this his whole career but as a Mets fan I have to say if this were Johan Santana or R.A. Dickey who suffer this freak injury the Mets would be eviscerated from every keyboard and microphone in the NY sports media universe.

It’s the same as the Bronx Bastards keeping Nick Swisher on the active roster with bad hammy, remember how the Mets and Omar Minaya were smacked upside down for actions like this but Pee Wee Cashman never gets hammered for any of his bone head moves in this town. NYC sports media is Shillsville.

Just to show how fair and balanced I am when it comes to the New York Highlanders, I received a copy of Marty Appel’s new book   Pinstriped Empire: The New York Yankees from Before the Babe to after the Boss (Published by Bloomsbury USA) and I cannot wait to read it. I have had the pleasure of meeting Marty and various SABR events and have read all his books so I know Pinstriped Empire will be a winner.

NEWS: Mets Need A 5th Starter……

And it won’t be Matt Harvey. Or Jeurys  Familia or Zack Wheeler so says Sandy Alderson and of course that’s the correct course of action. Right now there are three choices to fill Big Pelf’s spot (did you ever think at any time in your Metsfandom life you say to yourself “WOW I miss Mike Pelfrey”? ) Miguel Batisita is one of the choices and quite frankly I’ve seen enough of Batisita and his total ineffectiveness so why not send up Jeremy Hafner and give him the next shot or even better how about Alderson doing some good old fashion GM’ing and make a deal for a pitcher as I said yesterday Jason Marquis would be a great fit.

NEWS: NY Knickerbockers go down 0-3 to the Miami Heat

As many of you know I am not a Knicks fan, my allegiance is to the Boston Celtics. Since my C’s didn’t play last night I watched the Knicks-Heat game and my question to Knicks fans is how do you root for Carmelo Anthony ? My God, how overrated is this guy ? Again being a fan of the Celtics I’m spoiled watching Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen drag their old bones up and down the court for one last run at Banner 18 but the hype for Carmelo Anthony just escapes me.    

 

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THE QUIET BEFORE THE STORM?

I admit I have no patience especially when it come to the Mets and the way they go about their business both on and off the field, but for some reason so far this off season I’m content with sitting back and waiting for Omar Minaya to make his move because from the look of the off season landscape no one else is jumping in either. Of course the Highlanders have to make their splash with the Nick Swisher deal and looking to pay CC Sabthia by the pound, by the way I’ll take off me “Highlander Hater” hat for a moment to say if I were a fan of the team from the South Bronx I’d be screaming for them to make signing Leo Mazzone to a big free agent contract and put him in charge as an origination Pitching Czar. Then Baby Boss Hal should tell Billy Connors he has till the count of ten to clean out his office in Tampa and hit the road. But I’m not a Highlander fan (Thank God!) and I have enough to do here sticking my nose in the Mets business.

 

I highly recommend you listen to Mike Silvas’a NY Baseball Digest podcast from last night as he had Ted Berg of SNY and Howard Megdal of the NY Observer along with Phil Alder of WCBS88 in what was an in depth and informative look at the needs of the Mets and Highlanders. Definitely a must listen.

 

I can’t imagine the Mets will let either Fransisco Rodriguez or Brain Fuentes get away from them in a bidding war with the Brewers or Rangers. From all reports it looks like K-Rod is the pitcher of choice to close games for the Mets but unlike the Highlanders and their bid for Sabathia, Omar is playing this very close to the vest waiting to see if there is any competition for Rodriguez’ services. It’s intriguing watching this first month of the off season as clubs are being so cautious on making bids or dealing I don’t know if it has as much to do with the current economic problems or if it’s parity that has most teams thinking they have a Tampa Bay shot in hell of reaching the World Series that they would rather go young and cheap to win?

 

I listened to half of Chinese Democracy this morning while walking to work and so far I like it. It’s not 14 years in the making masterpiece of rock music but it’s very good.

 

I’m sure Diane Sawyer is adding her Ashley Dupree interview to her scrap book of great interviews. “Here I am interviewing President Bush, and here I am with Nelson Mandela, and here I am with the young lady who is famous for banging the Governor of New York”.

 

One of the best things going for the Mets and Highlanders is that football frenzy has taken over NYC as Giants and Jets fans have visions of a Super Bowl match up in Tampa this February. I’m not ready to take a seat on that bandwagon just yet but I’ll throw this out there. The MVP of the NFL this season will be a NY quarterback.

 

If Charlie Weiss were a man of honor, he would place his resignation on the desk of ND president Rev John Jenkins and have him donate his remaining salary to Catholic Charities. You can not lose to Syracuse at home with a lame duck coach and expect to keep your job.

 

I’m very disappointed in Paulie Malignaggi as he didn’t put up too much of a fight losing to Ricky Hatton but what has me crazy is I can’t get that song out of my head that the band who follows Hatton to all his fights played Saturday night to the tune of Winter Wonderland:

 

“Walkin’ along

Singin’ a song

Walkin’in a Hatton wonderland”

 

The New York Rangers better come out tonight against the Coyotes like they have bottle rockets up their ass. With Scott Gomez back in the lineup that helps immensely but the defense especially Dimitri Kalinin who I am really starting to dislike a lot,  better protect his zone and man up. Can someone contact the Man Behind the Curtin (Slats Sather) and tell him time tomake a move? 

 

 

 

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ITCHIN’ FOR PITCHIN’

It’s tough to cut through all the double talk coming from the GM meetings and I’m still trying to figure out just what the GM’s are doing in Cali besides drinking at the bar and going bowling, hell they could have held the meeting on Staten Island down the street from my house for that matter.

 

What is becoming clearer is the off season mission of Omar Minaya. Is to add pitching, pitching and more pitching and if a hitter (Raul Ibanez, Nick Swisher, MANNY) falls in his lap so be it.

 

I am intrigued by the rumors of the Famous Rays interested in Aaron Heilman and if Heilman could bring back Edwin Jackson that would be a big score for Omar.

 

If Javier Vasquez could be had for Gimp and his stupid contract I’d green light that one as well. What we have to remember here is the Mets are looking to bolster the back of the rotation so unless Derek Lowe really loves the colors blue and orange I don’t see him signing with the Mets when the Highlanders and Red Sox will be spending money like they own oil wells.

 

I still like my idea of going after Matt Capps and John Grabow from the Pirates. As much as I wouldn’t mind Brain Fuentes I hate that a player like that feels he has a team like the Mets over barrel and even if Omar were to land Fuentes I’d still go after Capps and Grabow.

 

Hey look two of the core are wearing Gold Gloves lets trade ‘em

 

Speaking of the Great Bloviator of WFAN, it seems he had his pants pulled down<figuratively that is > by Ryan Church about Church hating NYC and playing for the Mets. Read here at MetsBlog and you see how the Rush Limbaugh of Sports Talk Radio was outed as the pompous jerk he has grown (REALLY GROWN) to be. Oh yeah and Mike tells us again how D-Wright is just another player and an awful third baseman, you phony turd!

 

Click over to Mike Silva’s NY Baseball Digest and listen to his interview with John Manuel of Baseball America who tells us the state of the Mets Farm System is not as weak as we’ve been led to believe. Some of you Tony B haters will have to join the dark side soon as he has fortified the farm system with excellent free agent signings and a couple of fruitful drafts.     

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