Wednesday, July 8, 2020

IT'S A NEW YORK HOMECOMING LIKE NO OTHER

Source: Side-Out Foundation

Baseball fever is in the air again as Opening Day 2020 quickly approaches. Announcements on Tuesday bring even more to look forward to as the Yankees and their cross-town rival Mets are set to host the 20th Anniversary of 9/11 in Citifield next September.

"I can't imagine how powerful and how emotional of an event that could be," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said." Just the thought of it gives me goosebumps. After so much waiting for the season to start it is exciting to learn that this game will happen and hopefully in front of fans. 

Source: Fox Sports

"The 20th-anniversary game will be played not far from the site of demolished Shea Stadium, where Hall of Famer Mike Piazza hit a memorable home run for the Mets against the Braves on Sept. 21, 2001, in the first major sporting event in the city following the attacks. The Mets wore hats honoring the city's first responders for the game," reported ESPN.

Source: Orange County Register

But luckily we don't have to wait until next year to see the Yankees and Mets play. As a matter of fact, the two teams will square off in exhibition games on July 18 and 19 ahead of the Opening Day. Then Joe Girardi will take his new team, the Philadelphia Phillies, to the Bronx for an exhibition game that is sure to draw some emotion.  Didi Gregorius will be with them as he takes to shortstop for his new team.

It's a homecoming like no other and I can't wait for it to get started. Just under two weeks until the 2020 baseball season kicks off! Get excited everyone!



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof

Monday, July 6, 2020

YANKEES CORONAVIRUS UPDATES & THE 2020 OPT OUT


This weekend was a hard one. This fourth of July holiday weekend looked a lot different than others. I keep reminding myself that it's not different just for us but for all players and every single team. The hope of baseball is now linked to consistent testing for Coronavirus and enhanced health and safety measures. Both of those we saw center stage over the weekend at Yankee stadium.


I'm really hoping for the best for Masahiro Tanaka. We've been so focused on Coronavirus, but the reality of getting hit by a comeback pitch is still as likely today as it was before Coronavirus and we were reminded of that. The same dangers surrounding baseball are still there...and now new ones. Reports say that Tanaka was showing concussion symptoms that have since subsided, thankfully but Tanaka will indeed go into concussion protocol. Definitely not the exciting news we were looking for as Spring Training 2.0 is now underway. Now we sit and wait and hope for good news.


In the meantime, as Tanaka recovers we get other results that hit close to home. As the Yankees completed their first round of Coronavirus tests of many to come....we hear that Luis Cessa and DJ LeMahieu have both tested positive, read more HERE. While Cessa was experiencing "mild symptoms" LeMahieu is asymptomatic, reminding us how scary this virus is. It's hard to fight and protect others from what you can't see. LeMahieu won't be the last, there will be more. So the next few weeks and months are going to be hard for baseball.

It is hard enough that some players have exercised their option to not participate in the 2020 season, and now that we have our first big names to opt out who will be next? Or who is on the fence?


David Price and Felix Hernandez are not playing this season. Price is a huge loss for the Dodgers who expected Price to be a good addition for another run at the World Series. No Yankees have opted out yet, but could that change?


Maybe but I hope not. Mike Trout is one of the biggest names in baseball, and he is considering not playing this season. He and his wife are expecting their first child soon, and is concerned with their health and safety. Yesterday Sean Doolittle and Buster Posey also said he has reservations about playing and will continue to evaluate and will opt out if they feel it is necessary, read more HERE.

These are unprecedented times for sure. We still want baseball to happen, perhaps now more than ever....but what if some of our favorites or big names in the game decide to sit this season out? If the big names don't play how does this affect the game? I know I am still going to watch no matter what, but it is definitely going to be a big change.


This season isn't going to be easy, but I think Aaron Boone is right....we are as hungry as ever. The Yankees will find a way to rise to the challenge, and baseball will find a way to persevere.

Keep your fingers crossed for Tanaka, LeMahieu and Cessa!



--Jeana Bellezza
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj

Sunday, July 5, 2020

PRAYERS FOR MASAHIRO TANAKA

Source: Associated Press

Masahiro Tanaka is responsive after taking a hit to the head off the bat of Giancarlo Stanton in Yankee Stadium during spring training Saturday.  It was grizzly.  It was hard to watch. And it was quite frankly overplayed on social media channels throughout the day.

I realize I am sort of out of bounds here because we are technically social media too, but the posts and video about Tanaka going down were tough to watch, over and over again.  Teammate Gleyber Torres had a lot to say to about the magnitude of posts, includes the phrase, "Prayers for Tanaka."



 
"Afterward, an upbeat-sounding Tanaka posted in English to his verified Twitter account: "I appreciate all the support. I feel it a bit right now, but I'm all good," adding that he was "going to try to get back on the mound ASAP! "Thanks again for all the encouraging words!''
reported NJ.com.



Gratefully Tanaka is going to be okay, but there was a collective gasp when the pitcher went down and to Aaron Judge's point the cameras just kept rolling.

"I get that everyone has a job to do but continuing to film and zoom in on someone hurt and down in the stadium doesn’t sit well with me! Doesn’t matter who it is, teammate, coach, or fan! Praying for Tanaka," said Judge in a Tweet.

I know everyone is hungry for baseball coverage and we will take everything we can get, but we all need to realize that these are player's lives and they come before sensationalizing an event that could have gone in a very different direction. Prayers for Tanaka and hope he recovers soon.



--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof


COVID-19 DIDN'T STOP DON BOSCO PHOTO-OPS WITH THE YANKEES



These are Mike Rooney's kids. Mike Rooney is the Don Bosco Head Baseball Coach. This photo is plastered everywhere, days after Rooney set up a private work out with members of the New York Yankees.  You can't be mad at these boys... they think their dad's a hero, finding a way to bring pro players to a little, yet well known prep school in Ramsey, NJ to bring eyes and awareness to their baseball program.  To many, Mike Rooney would be considered a genius. 

There was no baseball program this year because of COVID-19, and so, if anything he's brought interest to his Don Bosco program again, in hopes to be able to have a rush of potential future Ironmen players to their program.


To me? Mike Rooney needs to be questioned by the top tier of Don Bosco... perhaps even reprimanded by the state's Governor.  Because photo-ops during a pandemic are seen as dangerous, for the Yankees players, for Rooney's kids or anyone else that posed for them. It's destructive and sends a signal that life is normal. LIFE IS NOT NORMAL.

NJ.com writes: 

"Don Bosco coach Mike Rooney arranged the session, which also included Aaron Hicks, Dellin Betances, Mike Ford and CC Sabathia."  

And so, he's responsible and I have news for you... heat needs to be put on this guy who doesn't think a pandemic is important when it comes to photo-ops for his kids.  What makes matters worse is he's done this sort of thing before last Wednesday. He just can't get enough.

Rooney is quoted here: "About two weeks earlier, Todd Frazier, Jeurys Familia, Joe Panik and Rick Porcello also worked out at our field."

But here is the quote that says all you need to know about the state of the country and the selfishness of Mr. Rooney:


"It was great, felt like Don Bosco was 'Field of Dreams'. Obviously, it's a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence. What was more apparent than their talent was how they are all terrific guys. The way in which all of them treated people showed what great guys they are."

The phrases in red say it all.

"once-in-a-lifetime occurrence", and so you jumped on it with no safety precautions and even put your kids at risk because it was "once in a lifetime".  Got it.

"Field of Dreams", so because the pro players came to Bosco's field, you and many grown men sat their drooling and watching pro players play on a field you coach, but the idea that a new generation of young players will spark new interest in Bosco for baseball, you just created a revenue maker.


"terrific guys". That means there was clearly an interaction. Whether or not they wore masks and practiced social distancing, it would not be fair for me to speculate. But let's assume they didn't based on  this picture of 3 grown men, one with the mask literally under his chin. Really? 



This leads me to believe they lost sight of safety all together just for a photo with Aaron Judge. Are you joking?


And where are the Yankees in this? Where is Jason Zillo? Why has he been silent? These are his players? No doubt he was part of the decision making to set this up? It's sloppy, it really is. He has no problem with them mingling with regular folks during a pandemic? Really? Bad judgement...really bad.

You know what I think? I think that it's a great idea for pro players to have a pro workout at a little high school stadium that's tucked away for a few hours. You Bosco dudes want to bring your families in and sit in the stands, 6 feet away from each other wearing masks and taking pictures and video from a distance makes a lot of sense and is exciting and the press would be good for you.


But no. That didn't happen. Instead you started posing for pictures during a pandemic. I have a HUGE problem with that.  Don't worry, perception is everything Coach Rooney... you doing this just made it cool for anyone else to stand with friends and strangers and have no regard for the big situation surrounding us... a pandemic that's literally killed thousands in NY, NJ and Connecticut along... and it won't go away because of crap like this. 

I find this a selfish act as well as disgusting. Hey Rooney, hope no one got COVID, I guess we'll find out in 14 days. I hope it was worth it. I hope your kids look at you like a hero today. 

All eyes on you, and not in a good light either. We're digging in hard on this one.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

A SEASON WITHOUT FANS WILL BE WEIRD


There really isn't any way around it. We are in a pandemic, and yet, we need something like baseball to bring the country together again. But how do we do it? Well... we do what we're about to do, bring baseball back... but with no live fans.  Weird? Yup.  

Zach Britton spoke about it, and it's interesting coming from a pro player. The New York Post has this:

"Having pitched for the Orioles in a vacant Camden Yards against the White Sox in 2015, Britton understands it’s not easy. 


'When I played in the no-fan game in Baltimore and it was something that I remember directly saying, ‘I hope I never have to do this again,’ 

Britton said Friday on a Zoom call from Yankee Stadium, where he worked out and went through testing a day ahead of the Yankees’ first full-squad workout Saturday that will jump-start spring training 2.0. 

'It’s going to be a challenge. I have spoken to some guys on our team about it and what it felt like. It is something that we are going to talk about again in the next couple of days."


"I think the team that can self-motivate the best is going to be the team that comes out on top. I honestly do believe that it might not be the most talented team this year. I think it will be the guys who come to the ballpark and not be relying on the adrenaline that the atmosphere would give you but be able to self-motivate and accomplish what they want to accomplish. I truly believe it is going to be that team that wins it.’’

Adrenaline. There is something to be said about competing with a crowd behind you... and if an athlete has been doing it all their lives and then asked to compete with no fans... mentally it's pretty tricky.  Look, the good news is all these teams will be in the same boat, and honestly, for us fans at home it will be something interesting to see.

Plus, a 60 game season could bring us 2 teams that may not normally be at the World Series in a regular season... and so it could be fun.

That being said... I'm still rooting for the Yankees to take the whole thing...of course!  

Go Yanks!

BAD IDEA FOR THIS PHOTO-OP DURING A PANDEMIC, DON BOSCO


I love when celebrities go to small towns or familiar schools and visit. I think it's great.  You know what I don't like? I don't like that NY, New Jersey and CT were demolished with death and sickness during COVID-19, now other states like Florida, Arizona and the Carolinas are now getting hit and Aaron Judge, Aaron Hicks and Mike Ford decide to do a private workout and take pictures with a bunch of people at Don Bosco, a school in Ramsey, New Jersey, and no one is social distancing and no one is wearing masks.  


Do the rules not apply anymore? We are still in a pandemic right?

This pandemic has taken a toll on me and many.  And if you live in the Tri-state like I do, I saw a lot of people I knew lose their life to COVID-19.  Now other states are spiking and it just seems like it's about to get bad again up here.  


And couple that with the photo of Aaron Judge and a bunch of priests posing for a photo with no regard for the rules makes me uncomfortable and annoyed.

I love my Yankees. I love Aaron Judge. I think he's the next big thing, a solid role model and excellent athlete.  But this photo-op was pretty disappointing to me. You wanna work out there privately? 


Do it... don't make it a dog and pony show.  

I'd really love to see what Don Bosco Prep and the Yankees have to say about this... because this is a very bad look. A horrible P.R. move.

Sorry to sound like a crybaby, but why have rules if they don't apply to everyone?