Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Not much going on in Yankeeland, as the team had the night off for revelry. Tim McCarver, however, has found himself in hot water over suggestions that the Yankees front office had airbrushed Joe Torre out of their history like Nazi and Communist party leaders purging generals. Many have found this tasteless, considering the comparison of the Yankees front office to two murderous regimes insensitive; especially on the day the Yankees were honoring the Boss and Bob Sheppard, but mostly the Boss.

But it's not particularly insensitive really. If McCarver had said he was glad to see the Boss go, that would be insensitive. But when you've essentially airbrushed a former manager out of your history, it's okay to be compared to regimes who airbrushed generals out of theirs. Now sure, the Yankees haven't murdered anyone, that we know of, but McCarver wasn't comparing the relative murderousness of the Yankees, but their revision of history. I'm pretty sure the latest Yankees Media Guide lists Casey Stengel as the Manager of the bombers from '96-'07. And if you go to the Yankees Museum, the old guy wearing a navy Yankees jacket in the picture of the Yankees celebrating on the field after winning the '96 World Series looks suspiciously like Obi-Wan Kanobi. He's holding a light-saber.

Sure, Torre wrote a tell all book in which he claimed Brian Cashman betrayed him (probably true), A-Rod was a fraud (which, considering the PED revelations, turned out to be true), and that Jeter was more gangster than most people can even conceive of (also true), so maybe he started it. But that doesn't change what the Yankees have done.

As much as I hate to do it, I'm sticking up for McCarver on this one. This is, after all, America. And if I've learned one thing from the example of our elected officials is that it is always appropriate to compare your opponents to Nazi Germany. Republicans want tax cuts? They're f-----g Nazis. Democrats want to ensure health care? Those f-----g Nazis! The first non-white leader of a first world nation? You know he's a Nazi. That's just how it goes. McCarver's only sin is that he made his comments during an MLB broadcast rather than a tea party rally or session of Congress. You know what that makes his critiques? That's right. Nazis.


Rich Mahogany said...

I am so used to hearing McCarver say stupid things that I had no reaction when he dropped his WWII comparison. Really, what was dumber - the airbrushing comment, or saying that Carlos Pena "received a degree in soft hands from the school of hard knocks"? It's a toss-up.

I don't care about the Germany/Russia reference, even if it's stupid. What annoys me is McCarver says the Yankees aren't doing enough to acknowledge Torre, but never explains what he means. What does he expect? A plaque in Monument Park? A giant statue in front of a gate? Joe Torre Day (while Torre is still managing a different team)? Joe Torre patches on the uniforms to go with the Steinnbrenner and Sheppard patches? Really Tim, what are the Yankees supposed to do here?

Roberto E. Alejandro said...

There are some things they should've done but didn't, like inviting Torre to the last game at the old stadium (even if he would never be able to attend). Then there are the little things they could do but haven't, like a 100 foot statue outside of the park. Maybe more prominent bigalow tea advertisements. Also, they could force their players to refer to Girardi as Mr. Torre, just as a subtle reminder of how great a man and manager Torre was.

Rich Mahogany said...

These are good and wise suggestions, but I think a team should not have to go out of its way to honor someone who is still in baseball. Torre is managing a team that could be the Yankees' World Series opponent (don't laugh). Teams don't invite their former players back if they're still playing. I don't see why the tradition should be different for former managers who are still managing.

If the Yankees fail to acknowledge Torre's existence when he's retired, it's a different story.

Roberto E. Alejandro said...

They've already released a statement to the press indicating they won't recognize Torre's existence when he retires, especially since Obi-Wan Kanobi was the manager of those great Yankee teams, not Torre, who is a media myth, like the recession.

I'm just looking forward to Johnny Damon Day at the stadium next week.