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Steinbrenner labels Yankees as 'sad failure'

Old 10-08-06, 05:42 PM
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Steinbrenner labels Yankees as 'sad failure'

NEW YORK (AP) -- Yankees owner George Steinbrenner said he was "deeply disappointed" at his team's elimination in the first round of the AL playoffs, calling it a "sad failure."

New York was heavily favored in its series against the Detroit Tigers and won Tuesday's opener 8-4. The Tigers then won 4-3 at Yankee Stadium on Thursday, and swept two games in Detroit, 6-0 Friday and 8-3 Saturday.

"I am deeply disappointed at our being eliminated so early in the playoffs," Steinbrenner said in a statement issued Sunday by spokesman Howard Rubenstein. "This result is absolutely not acceptable to me nor to our great and loyal Yankee fans. I want to congratulate the Detroit Tigers organization and wish them well. Rest assured, we will go back to work immediately and try to right this sad failure and provide a championship for the Yankees, as is our goal every year."

Rubenstein said he spoke with Steinbrenner on Sunday.

"Clearly he was upset," he said.

Rubenstein said Steinbrenner was not going to comment on a report in the New York Daily News that manager Joe Torre likely will be fired and replaced by Lou Piniella.
Got news for ya, Steiny. Your team can't win every year. And every once in a while, they won't make it all the way through the playoffs. That's life.
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Old 10-08-06, 05:49 PM
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It's true. W. that payroll and talent, they should be steamrolling everyone. But, that's life. And as a baseball fan, it's great to see teams w/ hardly any payroll continue on.
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Old 10-08-06, 06:13 PM
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/\ /\ /\ Agreed.

Now that the Dodgers are out, and the Raiders are the worst team in the NFL, I now can look forward to the Lakers season for some good games.
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Old 10-08-06, 06:50 PM
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I truly believe that winning in the baseball playoffs is mainly luck. Obviously to make the playoffs you need to have skill. And some skills do translate better in playoff baseball (i.e. power pitchers, dominant closers). But your playing other similarly talented teams and in a short series anything can happen. New York won . It's not Joe Torres' fault. It's not A-Rod's fault. The Yankees won 97 games. Detroit won 95. These teams are pretty much equal, and it's just that Detroit's pitchers pitched very well this time. Play this series again and something totally different will likely happen.
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Old 10-08-06, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I truly believe that winning in the baseball playoffs is mainly luck. Obviously to make the playoffs you need to have skill. And some skills do translate better in playoff baseball (i.e. power pitchers, dominant closers). But your playing other similarly talented teams and in a short series anything can happen. New York won . It's not Joe Torres' fault. It's not A-Rod's fault. The Yankees won 97 games. Detroit won 95. These teams are pretty much equal, and it's just that Detroit's pitchers pitched very well this time. Play this series again and something totally different will likely happen.
All you need to do is look at the fact that the team that was hotter coming into the playoffs lost every series (assuming the Cardinals close out the Padres). No one at all picked the A's or the Cardinals to advance, but here we are. In fact, I would say most had the Yankees, Twins, Dodgers and Padres advancing, and they could all be home after tonight.
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Old 10-08-06, 07:04 PM
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Or maybe the teams that are truly "better" step up and win games.
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Old 10-08-06, 07:05 PM
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And by "sad", he means "totally fucking awesome"
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Old 10-08-06, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
Or maybe the teams that are truly "better" step up and win games.
but do you really believe that or are you repeating some sports cliche? I mean the team that wins most of these games is not the team that plays best, its usually the team who's starting pitcher pitched best. And he's just one of 25 players.

Besides, even good teams win only about 60% of their games in a season, against all the teams. That percentage should drop against the top (i.e. playoff teams). Am I supposed to believe that a team can magically just play better at their own will to win in a 5 or 7 game series? Or is it just dumb luck that the World Series was won by wild card teams (teams not even good enough to win their division) in 2002, 2003, and 2004? And wild card teams also reached the World series and lost in 2002 and 2005?
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Old 10-08-06, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by El Scorcho
And by "sad", he means "totally fucking awesome"
It's Steinbrenner and the Gm's fault. When they were winning championships they did so with a lot of home grown talent.

You can't just go and overspend on the "best" available players. Good starting pitching in a series usually wins out. They have Jared Wright and they are fucked. And the "greatest lineup in the history of organized baseball" can not overcome Jared Wright.

Last edited by Lee Harvey Oswald; 10-08-06 at 10:20 PM.
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Old 10-08-06, 09:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Lee Harvey Oswald
It's Steinbrenner and the Gm's fault. When they were winning championships they did so with a lot of home grown talent.

You can't just go and overspend on the "best" available players. Good starting pitching in a series usually wins out. They have Jared Wright and they are fucked.
Yeah, but when you have all the power, you can blame anyone you want to other than yourself, which is apparently why Torre is out.
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Old 10-08-06, 09:35 PM
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I love seeing that old man in pain.
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Old 10-08-06, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
but do you really believe that or are you repeating some sports cliche? I mean the team that wins most of these games is not the team that plays best, its usually the team who's starting pitcher pitched best. And he's just one of 25 players.

Besides, even good teams win only about 60% of their games in a season, against all the teams. That percentage should drop against the top (i.e. playoff teams). Am I supposed to believe that a team can magically just play better at their own will to win in a 5 or 7 game series? Or is it just dumb luck that the World Series was won by wild card teams (teams not even good enough to win their division) in 2002, 2003, and 2004? And wild card teams also reached the World series and lost in 2002 and 2005?
I believe luck has nothing to do with it. In baseball any given team can beat any other one on any given day. That's not luck. That's called parity.
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Old 10-08-06, 10:04 PM
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I agreed that it has nothing to do with luck and I don't care. Now that Yankees is out of playoff where they do not deserve. Let's REAL baseball play!
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Old 10-08-06, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
I believe luck has nothing to do with it. In baseball any given team can beat any other one on any given day. That's not luck. That's called parity.
I agree that in baseball any given team can beat any other one on any given day. Much more so that other major sports. But if the outcome is seemingly random and can vary so much from day to day, that is what I'd call luck. Skill is when the same team wins all the time.
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Old 10-08-06, 10:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Lee Harvey Oswald
You can't just go and overspend on the "best" available players. Good starting pitching in a series usually wins out. They have Jared Wright and they are fucked.
Yup. Team power starts not with your War Chest, but with a solid farm system. A killer farm system gives you much more power than money ever will. Take that prospect and bring him up in your organization, or trade him to fill a hole. Normally, when you buy a player, you're not getting true value out of him. Randy, Sheff, and Mussina were all being paid higher money for past performance. They got more money and produced less, where as a solid prospect like Cano or Wang is making next to nothing and producing now. They were able to do this in the mid 90's with guys like Jeter, Posada, Bernie, Rivera, Pettitte and they were able to pull off killer trades like Roberto Kelly for Paul O'Neill. Now the only way they can make a trade is if a poor team wants a salary dump, because the prospects the Yanks trade flat out suck. They neglected the draft and the farm since the core players were called up and it has cost them dearly. It appears things may recover over time since they are now bringing up some young players (Melky, Cano and Wang), but if they simply continue to try to buy their way into the WS, they WILL continue to fail.

Money ball is as relevant to a team like the Yankees as it is to a team like the A's. Wake up and realize that George.
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Old 10-08-06, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Lee Harvey Oswald
And he means "The Greatest Offensive Lineup Ever".

It's Steinbrenner and the Gm's fault. When they were winning championships they did so with a lot of home grown talent.
I've never really understand this line of thought and it seems like facetious reasoning.

First, you act as if there's one way to win a title. There's not. In fact the Yankee teams that won the World Series had plenty of high priced free agents and non-home grown talent (David Cone, John Wetteland, Paul O'Neill, Tino Martinez). The Red Sox won a World Series with plenty of guys not groomed by them (i.e. Pedro, Ramirez, Lowe, Varitek, Ortiz, Foulke, Wakefield, Damon, hell pretty much their entire team outside of Trot Nixon). The Marlins won one in 1997 using almost all on bought talent. There's nothing wrong with free agents.

Second, people act like the Yankees actively got big name free agents at the expense of their home grown talent. News flash, the Yankees farm sucked. And if the Yanks didn't sign the likes of Matsui, Sheffield, Mussina, etc... they would be starting crap players like the Royals. Obviously the Yankees would be better served by a more productive farm system. But it's not done by a snap of the fingers, and it could be much, much worse.

The truth is that the team got into the post-season every year. The team's good enough. They've come pretty damn close to a few titles (Rivera blew it in 2001, Beckett got them in game 6 in 2003, Rivera blew it in the 2004 ALCS). That's one or two plays from 3 additional titles. It's really not a problem with the team. It just the luck of a bounce here of there.
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Old 10-08-06, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I agree that in baseball any given team can beat any other one on any given day. Much more so that other major sports. But if the outcome is seemingly random and can vary so much from day to day, that is what I'd call luck. Skill is when the same team wins all the time.
If it's just luck, then why don't we see TB, KC or PIT in the playoffs?

I won't argue that momentum certainly has something to do with it at the end of the season, but to make the claim that "luck" has anything to do with it is pretty preposterous. If that were the case we'd see teams like KC, TB and the like in the playoffs more.
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Old 10-08-06, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
I truly believe that winning in the baseball playoffs is mainly luck.
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Old 10-08-06, 11:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Deftones
If it's just luck, then why don't we see TB, KC or PIT in the playoffs?

I won't argue that momentum certainly has something to do with it at the end of the season, but to make the claim that "luck" has anything to do with it is pretty preposterous. If that were the case we'd see teams like KC, TB and the like in the playoffs more.
Two reasons:

1) There are different levels of talent between KC and the Yankees. Remember I said winning in the playoffs is luck. Not in the regular season. Most teams in the playoffs are essentially at the same level. But KC and the Yanks are not at the same level.

2) Luck will even out over the long run. The season is 162 games. That removes the luck element of a single game and allows the good teams to rise to the top over the course of a season. But in small sample sizes, almost any team can look good. That's why a 5 or 7 game series doesn't tell you too much.
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Old 10-08-06, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by MechanicalMan

Maybe I should clarify. Obviously teams that play well in the playoffs will win. But the idea as a GM/President is to put together a good team. And if you make the playoffs, you're doing pretty well. But once you get to the playoffs, you're playing against teams of similar talents. For example, in the AL people act like the Yanks were huge favorites, but the Yanks won 97 games, Minnesota 96, Detroit 95, and Oakland 93. They are basically equal in talent. And equally talented teams have basically the same shot at winning. Also as a GM, you never know how healthy, productive, and useful a player will be in a short series (for example, Johan Santana is a great player and pitched well, but still lost). The Yankees put together a good team. They're not a worse team than the Tigers. Just like Minnesota isn't worse than Oakland. Someone just has to win. And it's not because the Yankees were poorly put together. They just ran into some good pitching, and that's bad luck. Play the series 10 times and New York probably wins half the time, if not more. If that's true, how can losing the series be largely due to bad luck?
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Old 10-08-06, 11:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
Two reasons:

1) There are different levels of talent between KC and the Yankees. Remember I said winning in the playoffs is luck. Not in the regular season. Most teams in the playoffs are essentially at the same level. But KC and the Yanks are not at the same level.

2) Luck will even out over the long run. The season is 162 games. That removes the luck element of a single game and allows the good teams to rise to the top over the course of a season. But in small sample sizes, almost any team can look good. That's why a 5 or 7 game series doesn't tell you too much.
Ok, so we've established to be good you need to have skill and talent. If the Yankees have skill and talent they should be a good team. They are. Therefore, luck can't enter much into the equation, because they've done what was expected (go to the playoffs).

I agree in small samples sizes, any team can look good. However, going back to skill and talent, those teams that possess more of these attributes will be more successful. The Yankees are.

If you think that one series doesn't tell you too much, then the playing of the sport at all is worthless. The 5 and 7 game series sets out to take out any "luck" out of the equation, making the team win either 3 or 4 games. If it were a one game series, I'd say you'd have a much better argument here.
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Old 10-08-06, 11:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Jericho
Maybe I should clarify. Obviously teams that play well in the playoffs will win. But the idea as a GM/President is to put together a good team. And if you make the playoffs, you're doing pretty well. But once you get to the playoffs, you're playing against teams of similar talents. For example, in the AL people act like the Yanks were huge favorites, but the Yanks won 97 games, Minnesota 96, Detroit 95, and Oakland 93. They are basically equal in talent. And equally talented teams have basically the same shot at winning. Also as a GM, you never know how healthy, productive, and useful a player will be in a short series (for example, Johan Santana is a great player and pitched well, but still lost). The Yankees put together a good team. They're not a worse team than the Tigers. Just like Minnesota isn't worse than Oakland. Someone just has to win. And it's not because the Yankees were poorly put together. They just ran into some good pitching, and that's bad luck. Play the series 10 times and New York probably wins half the time, if not more. If that's true, how can losing the series be largely due to bad luck?
Running into good pitching isn't back luck. That's the ability of one athlete's skills triumphing over others.

Back luck is chasing a fly in foul ground and having a fan catch the ball instead of the player. Luck doesn't enter the equation. This isn't a game of chance. It's a game of skill.
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Old 10-08-06, 11:59 PM
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Old 10-09-06, 12:05 AM
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I think we're talking about different kinds of luck. In an individual game, the team that plays better usually wins. Detroit beat the Yankees mainly because their pitching was better. They performed better. But I'm talking from a GM's standpoint. Whoever put together the Yankees put together a good team. He did his job. I'm not saying the Yankees' GM didn't made mistakes (he did), but the simple fact that Mike Mussina got outpitched by Justin Verlander on a day is bad luck (Mussina's the better pitcher at this point in their careers). The GM provided the Yanks with the better players. And better players will win out over 162 games. Better players won't always win out over 5 games. That's the point.

But of course there's always luck in every baseball game. There's the idea that a pitcher controls three things. K's, BB's, HRs. Everything else is luck. Over the course of a season, the BABIP will be a little less than .300. But in a given game it can go from .000 to .500 or more. That's just dumb luck. And it happens every game. That's part of the reason better teams don't always win, but only a part of it,
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Old 10-09-06, 12:29 AM
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I love this quote from baseball prospectus "that there is a great deal of luck in the playoff is an incontrovertible mathematical fact. While it takes 162 games to sort out who is the better team in the regular season, a playoff series can be decided in as few as 3 games. Moreover, while there are both good and bad teams in the regular season, those teams that reach the playoffs are closely bunched together."

Using Bill James log-5 method, the Yankees were 97-65 (or a .600 team). Even accounting for home field advantage, they would be expected to be Detroit about 52% of the time in a 5 game series. And they'd be expected to lose 48% of the time. This is one of those 48% of the times.
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