Tag Archives: Houk

Game 144. Yanks beat Boston 10-5 behind HRs by Gleyber and Judge. Tauchman also HRs, but gets hurt.

Yankee Stadium Frieze

Before the game, the Yanks activated Gio Urshela off the IL and brought up Thairo Estrada (who was on rehab), Kyle Higashioka and Breyvic Valera.

The Yanks then beat Boston 10-5 behind Aaron Judge, Gleyber Torres and Mike Tauchman, but Tauchman got hurt during the game.

With the win, the 94-50 Yankees maintain an 8 1/2 game lead over Tampa Bay with 18 games to go. The magic # to reach the playoffs is 8 and the magic # to clinch the division is 10.

They remain tied with Houston for the best record in baseball but Houston has the tiebreaker. Both teams are 1 1/2 games ahead of the Dodgers.

In the second inning, Torres gave the Yanks a 2-0 lead with his 35th HR of the season after Edwin Encarnacion singled in front of him.

In the third, Tauchman singled, and D.J. LeMahieu reached on an infield single. Judge singled in a run, sending LeMahieu to third. After Didi Gregorius popped out, Gary Sanchez’ RBI groundout made it 4-0.

Staked to a four-run lead, Masahiro Tanaka couldn’t go five innings for the win. He gave up a two-run HR to Jackie Bradley in the bottom of the third that cut the Yanks’ lead to 4-2.

In the top of the fourth, Torres singled and scored two outs later on a 2-run HR by Tauchman (13) who had to leave the game later with a calf injury. He’ll be getting an MRI. Ugh. 6-2, Yanks.

With two out in the fourth, Tanaka gave up a single and two doubles and that cut the lead to 6-4. Tanaka didn’t come out for the fifth, so couldn’t get the win.

Chad Green was superb in his three innings of scoreless relief and did pick up the W. His ERA of 4.60 doesn’t look good because of those horrendous first three weeks of the season where his ERA was 16.43 and he had to be sent to the minors. Since returning, the ERA is 2.89.

In the fifth, Judge led off the inning with a HR (21) to make it 7-4, then Didi reached on an error. After a walk, Encarnacion singled Didi to third, and Didi scored on an RBI forceout by Torres. 8-4.

Judge’s HR was the Yanks’ 268th of the season, topping the mark set last year when they set a MLB record. They are eight behind the Twins (who set a new record) this season. Could they (or the Twins) hit 300?

Mookie Betts homered in the bottom of the eighth to make it 8-5.

The Yanks scored two in the ninth when Didi walked, and Rafael Devers made two errors on the same play (one fielding, one throwing) to put runners on second and third. Devers had three errors in the game and was saved from a couple others. Encarnacion singled in one run, then Torres doubled in another to make it 10-5, the final score.

Judge 2 hits, 2 RBI, solo HR (21)
Encarnacion 3 hits, RBI
Torres 3 hits, 4 RBI, 2-run HR (35)
Tauchman 2 hits, 2 RBI. 2-run HR (13). Injured, left game.

Tanaka 4 IP, 4 R, 8 H, 0 W, 2 K. Gave up 1 HR.  4.53
Green (W, 3-4, 4.60) 3 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 5 K.
Ottavino 1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 0 W, 0 K. Gave up 1 HR.   1.76
Loaisiga 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 0 W, 2 K.  4.63

In the minors, Trenton (AA) will face Bowie for the Eastern League Championship. The best-of-five series begins in Trenton on Tuesday.

OF/1B Chris Duncan, ex-Cardinal and brother of one-time Yankee Shelley Duncan and son of former MLB catcher and pitching coach Dave Duncan, died of brain cancer
September 6 at the age of 38. He hit 22 HR as a part-time player for the 2006 WS Champion Cardinals and 21 the following year. In 389 MLB games, he hit .257 with 55 HR and an OPS+ of 109. He played for the Cardinals 2005-2009.

Tom Phoebus, RHP, died Sept. 5, age 77. Born in Baltimore, he pitched for his hometown Orioles 1966-1970, and was a part of two WS Champs (1966, 1970) and one AL Pennant winner (1969). He won 14, 15 and 14 games from 1967-1969. His only postseason appearance was in one game during the 1970 WS, where he got the win in Game 2. He pitched for the Padres (1971-1972) and Cubs (1972). His career MLB record was 56-52, 3.33, ERA+ 100.

A DYK: Aaron Boone now has 194 wins (and counting) in his first two seasons as Yankees’ manager. The record? Ralph Houk with 205 (1961 and 1962).

Lastly, a tip of the cap to Brian Cashman’s longevity with the Yankees. Not even a year after winning the World Series, the Red Sox fire Dave Dombrowski.

 

Looking back at another time, and another catching competition

Now that it has been made official, that the Yanks plan to move Posada to DH next year and open up the catching position to the youngsters, how about a post on another catching competition?

In 2011, a 39 year old (40 in August) Posada will give up a lot of the catching chores. Soon to be 21 year old Jesus Montero is the front runner to win the position. 24 year old Francisco Cervelli, last year’s backup who got considerable playing time will have a shot, as will Austin Romine, who will be 22 when camp opens. Montero (AAA last year) and Romine (AA) have yet to play in the majors.

Soon to be 18 year old Gary Sanchez is a few years away, but already rated the #2 prospect in the Yankees system, behind Montero. 

Let’s look back at another time there was competition for the Yankees’ catching position.

In 1946 the Yankees had a 39 year old catcher in Bill Dickey. Of course, there was no DH role back then to slide Dickey into. Dickey ended his career by hitting .261-2-10, OPS + 101 in 134 AB. One reason Dickey retired, besides his age, was his new job. For in May of 1946, Joe McCarthy resigned as Yankees manager. Dickey took over. With that came added responsibility. Long story short, Dickey didn’t care for managing and resigned himself late in 1946. The Yanks closed 1946 with Johnny Neun as their manager. They then got Bucky Harris for 1947. 

But a transition needed to be made at the catching position also.

In 1946, players were coming back from WWII. Baseball was trying to get back to normal. Players were trying to shake off “baseball rust” that accumulated while they were doing something more important—winning a war. Unfortunately, Some veterans of WWII still couldn’t play in the majors no matter how good they were. 1946 was the last year of an all-white major leagues. Desegregating the majors was still a year away.

The Yanks’ main catcher in 1946 was Aaron Robinson. Robinson hit .297, with 16 HR and 64 RBI. A lefty hitter, Robinson was 31 at the time. It took him a long time to get to the majors. He got one AB in 1943 and struck out. His MLB debut came at the age of 28. In 1945 he went .281-8-24 in 160 AB, OPS+ 147. In that 1946 season, a year when the Yanks finished 3rd, Robinson finished 16th in MVP voting with the stats listed above and an OPS+ of 147. Nice numbers. Nice career ahead of him, right? Nope. In 1947, Robinson was the primary C of the champion Yankees, hitting .270-5-36. He made the All-Star team, his only appearance. The OPS+ was a respectable 118. He went 2 for 10 in the World Series. But in February 1948 the Yanks traded him to the White Sox for Eddie Lopat. It was a trade that worked out for the Yanks, since Lopat joined Allie Reynolds and Vic Raschi to form the “Big Three,” a trio that led the Yanks to five consecutive WS triumphs from 1949-1953.

Robinson had ok numbers from 1948 to 1951. He hit .252-8-39, OPS+ 96 for the White Sox in 1948 before moving on to the Tigers 1949-1951. He hit 13 HR for the 1949 Tigers. He ended his career with the 1951 Red Sox. Robinson finished his career with a .260 average, 61 HR and an OPS+ of 112.

Gus Niarhos went 9 for 40 for the 1946 Yanks at the age of 25. He was out of the majors in 1947 but came back to catch 83 games in 1948 for the Yankees, hitting .268-0-19, OPS+ 99. He had 43 ABs in 1949. In 1950, after one game with the Yankees, he was selected off waivers by the White Sox. He wound up hitting .324 in 105 AB for Chicago that year. Niarhos was with the White Sox in 1951, hitting .256-1-10 in 168 AB. He spent 1952 and 1953 with Boston, and 1954 and 1955 with the Phillies. After 1951, he only had a total of 107 more at bats in the majors. Niarhos hit .252 in his MLB career with just one HR in 691 AB.

Ken Silvestri got into 13 games for the 1946 Yankees. 6 for 21 at the age of 30. He was with the White Sox 1939 and 1940, Yankees 1941, 1946-1947, and the Phils 1949-1951. He only had a total of 203 MLB at bats, though. .217-5-25, OPS+ 78.

Bill Drescher, at age 25, was 2 for 6 for the 1946 Yanks, then never played in the majors again. Drescher got 7 ABs in 1944. In 1945 he went .270-0-15 in 48 games. He had just 139 ABs in his brief career, .266-0-16. OPS+ 75.

There was one other guy who got some catching time in. A 21 year old catcher. Good bat but there was serious concerns about his defense. We’ll get to him later.

In 1947, Robinson got most of the playing time at catcher. (See his stats above). One of his backups was a 27 year old rookie, Ralph Houk. Houk hit .272-0-12 in 92 AB in 1947, OPS+ 91. Houk only got 66 more ABs in his MLB career, despite hanging on with the Yanks through 1954. He finished .272-0-20 in only 166 MLB at bats. OPS+ 79. Houk, of course, made his mark another way by managing the 1961 and 1962 Yankees to World Championships and the 1963 squad to the AL pennant. He spent all or parts of 20 years as a manager for the Yanks, Tigers and Red Sox, winning 1619 and losing 1531. From 1964-1966, he was the Yanks’ GM.

Silvestri (see above) was 2 for 10 in 1947. Another backup was Sherm Lollar.

Lollar was just 22, turning 23 in August 1947. He had played 28 games for the 1946 Indians, hitting .242-1-9. With the Yanks in 1947, he played in 11 games, going 7 for 32 with a HR and 6 RBI. He went 3 for 4 in the WS with 2 doubles. The Yanks’ catcher of the future, right (especially with the stats, lack of playing time of the others listed above, except for Robinson)? Nope. In 1948 Lollar went 8 for 38 for the Yanks. He was then traded to the Browns.

Lollar went on to have a very good career. He was with the Browns 1949 to 1951, then with the White Sox 1952-1963. He went on to become a seven-time All Star. He was the starting catcher for the 1959 AL Champion White Sox. He finished in the top 10 of MVP voting in 1958 and 1959, when he hit 20 and 22 HR. For half his career, there were no Gold Glove Awards. Now, sometimes the GG is a joke, but Lollar won three of them. Twice he had seasons of over 80 RBI. He ended his career hitting .264 with 155 HR. OPS+ 104.

Hmm, it’s something to let a future seven-time All-Star go…

Oh yeah…there was still that guy from 1946 I didn’t get to yet. The 21 year old who had a good bat but whose D was questionable. Yup, he was there in 1947 as well. I’ll get to him in a bit. Hold on. 

In 1948, Niarhos got most of the catching time for a team that came in third. You can see his stats above. Houk was there (29 AB) as was Lollar (38 AB). There was another new guy on the scene as well. A 23 year old named Charlie Silvera. He only got 14 ABs, but went 8 for 14. Bright future?

Well, Silvera stayed with the Yanks through 1956. In 1957 he ended his career with the Cubs. He did get 130 AB in 1949, hitting .315-0-13, OPS+ 95 but only had 482 AB in his ten-year career, going .282-1-52, OPS+ 86.

So you had Robinson take over for Dickey. Robinson was replaced by Niarhos. Houk was there, as was Lollar in his pre-All Star days. Silvera. Drescher. Silvestri.

…and that funny looking kid.

That funny looking kid took over as full-time catcher in 1949.

Yup. Good bat. Questionable D. 

1946. Six games at catcher. Seven total. 8 for 22, 2 HR and 4 RBI.
1947. Still shaky with the D. Bill Dickey is working with him. 51 games at catcher. The Yanks want his bat in the lineup. 24 games in the OF. 83 total games. .280-11-54, OPS+ 114. Hey, the 22 year old kid actually finished 15th in MVP voting. Hit the first PH HR in WS history, too.
1948. You know, this kid sure talks funny but boy, can he hit. Dickey is still working with him, though. 71 games at C, 50 in the OF. .305-14-98, OPS+ 120. You know what, he swings at everything but almost never strikes out. 469 AB. Just 24 strikeouts. Made the All-Star team, too. 29th in MVP voting.

1949. Hey, guess who is the full-time catcher? He got hurt and missed a month. Silvera had to catch for a while, but 116 games, 109 at catcher. No OF. .277-20-91. OPS+ 111. All Star, 15th in MVP voting.

This kid turned out all right, the one who eventually got the job. .285, 358 HR. OPS+ 125. Made the HOF. A three-time MVP. Gee, Lollar was named an All-Star in seven seasons. This guy was named a All-Star in fifteen seasons. From 1950 to 1956 this guy finished 3rd, 1st, 4th, 2nd, 1st, 1st and 2nd in MVP voting. That’s something.    

He even managed. Yanks and Mets. Took both to the WS, but lost both times. He got his number retired, #8. His mentor, Dickey, has the same number retired. 

…and this guy also became a national treasure.

By now you know who that kid is.

Lawrence Peter “Yogi” Berra.       

If only the winner of the competition to succeed Posada becomes half as good as Yogi was.

But, especially with Sanchez still a few years down the road, the eventual winner may not be determined for a few years. It took some years of adjustment from Dickey’s retirement in 1946 to Yogi becoming full time in 1949.

Could we be seeing the same now? A few years of adjustment from Posada sliding to DH to to eventual winner establishing himself?   

Time will tell.  

Thoughts and remembrances from someone on the inside who knew The Voice, The Boss and The Major.

As you know, the Yankees lost three long-time family members in the past couple of weeks. First long-time PA announcer Bob Sheppard. Then the Boss, George M. Steinbrenner. Now Ralph Houk, who managed the Yanks 1961-1963, and 1966-1973. In addition to his managing, Houk was a player, coach and GM for the Yankees.

I asked Marty Appel for his thoughts of the three men. Appel started out working for the Yanks in their PR department in the late 1960s, when CBS still owned the team and Houk was the manager. Later, Appel added P.R. director for the Yankees and executive producer of Yankees telecasts to his resume.

Here are our e-mails:

Me:

I was wondering, with this week’s passing of Ralph Houk, if you could share any special memories of “the Major” that you have about him? Anything you provide would be greatly appreciated and I’d put it in on my blog to share with my readers. Having read some of your work and knowing the years you spent in the late 60s and early 70s with the Yankees, I’m sure that you have many Houk moments and memories. Any Sheppard/Boss stories would also be appreciated. It must be a very trying week for you, with lots of memories about these three men.

Mr. Appel:

Marty Appel 

Ralph Houk was really a ‘man’s man’ in the old sense of the word…..the players loved playing for him, even in his second tour of duty when times got tough. He had the respect of everyone; he was just the sort of guy that would elicit that. One of the reasons Casey Stengel was fired after 1960 was that the Yankees were afraid of losing Houk (perhaps to Boston), and they didn’t want him to get away. He resigned after 1973, and everyone there had tears (35 years in the organization), but he was a master politician at baseball, and already had a Tigers job lined up. He called his boat in Florida, “Thanks Yanks,” and it was appropriate.

For Bob Sheppard, it’s good for fans to know how his job expanded over the years. When he began, he just had to read the lineups at the start, and then any substitutions as the game progressed. You didn’t hear that much of him. In fact, not until 1967 did he announce each player, each time up. And then we started giving him commercials between innings, like Yankee Yearbook and where to buy tickets for future games. His “celebrity” and icon status took hold in the mid ’70s, when all things Yankee Stadium became larger than life (with the modernization of the park), and after we began putting his photo in the Yearbook around 1972. Until then, no one really had a clue what he even looked like.

The Boss – too much for now….  

Ralph Houk passes away. Managed Yanks to three pennants, two world championships.

Ralph Houk

Ex-Yankee player and manager Ralph Houk has passed away, just a few weeks short of his 91st birthday.

As a rookie manager in 1961, Houk led the Yankees to the world championship. The Yanks repeated as world champs in 1962, and as AL champs in 1963.

After guiding the Yanks to three consecutive pennants and two world series titles in his first three years as a manager, Houk became Yankees’ GM and Yogi Berra took over as manager. In this position, Houk fired Berra and hired Johnny Keane after the 1964 World Series.

Houk then had to replace Keane as Yankees manager in 1966 after Keane started out 4-16. Houk’s second term as Yankees manager was not as successful, as he led the team for most of its “dark years”—the CBS era. The Yanks finished last in 1966 and 9th in 1967. Houk did receive manager of the year honors in 1970 when the Yanks finished second in the AL East with 93 wins.

After those first three seasons of 109, 96 and 104 wins, Houk II (1966-1973) saw only that one year (1970) have more than 83 wins. Such would be the rest of Houk’s managerial career.

Houk got the Boss in 1973 and didn’t care for Steinbrenner’s meddling. Immediately after the final game in the Old Stadium (pre-renovation), Houk resigned.

He went to the Tigers and managed there from 1974-1978, as the Tigers were now in a bit of a free-fall similar to what the Yanks were under when Houk II occurred. For as the Yanks saw Ford, Howard and Mantle age, this time it was the Tigers of Kaline, Horton and Freehan. The only winning season Houk had with the Tigers was the last one, 1978, with 86 wins.

After a couple years away from managing, Houk came back and managed the Red Sox from 1981-1984. He finished second in the AL East’s 2nd half of 1981. His 1982 team won 89 (3rd) and his final team won 86 in 1984. Once again, as in 1968 (Mantle) and in 1974 (Kaline), Houk managed a fading legend, as Yaz’s last year was 1983.

Houk had 20 years as a manager, but after those three pennants and two world titles in his first three years, never won the pennant again. His career record was 1619-1531 for a .514 winning percentage. His style, however, was popular among players. Mantle called him the best manager he ever played for. Yup, over Casey.

Upon his death, Houk ranked 15th on the managerial win list.

As manager, some of Houk’s temper tantrums were legendary. You see clips of Martin, Piniella, Durocher, Weaver….Houk was right up there with any of them when he argued an umpire’s call. 

Houk played for the Yankees from 1947-1954. He went .272-0-12 in 92 AB in 1947 but never got more than 29 AB in a season after that. Such was the life of a third string catcher when Yogi was your #1. In 158 MLB at bats, Houk hit .272-0-20. He was on six world championship teams as a player (1947, 1949-1953) but his ABs were 92, 7, 9, 5, 6 and 9 in those years. He only got into two WS games, going 1 for 2.  

He was a Yankees coach before taking over for Stengel after the 1960 World Series. The Yanks were fearful of losing the respected Houk to another team, and also worried about Casey’s age (70).

As a coach, he had a celebrated dustup with Don Larsen after a big postseason victory, when Larsen, celebrating too much, smashed a cigar into Houk’s face.

Houk got the nickname of “Major” for being a WWII Army hero during the Battles of Bastogne and of the Bulge. He kept a helmet on his mantlepiece—one with a bullet hole in it which barely missed killing him. He was awarded the Silver Star, Purple Heart, and Bronze Star.

  

odds and ends

Working on Sundays, I don’t get to see as much of the NFL as I’d like to. So, being a Steelers fan, seeing them beat the Broncos last night was a treat. I do admit that I was quite worried at halftime since, despite a 7-3 lead, the Steelers were quite deficient in the yardage gained category. Some adjustments led to a 28-10 win.

Did you know? Joe Girardi joined Ralph Houk and Billy Martin as the only men to win WS series rings with the Yanks both as a player and as a manager.

Did you know II… The only manager to win a WS with the Yanks and also win another elsewhere was Bucky Harris.

Free agents have started filing, teams are or are not picking up options. The offseason is underway.  

Soon we’ll find out who wins the various baseball awards.

Game 64. Yanks over (G)nats 5-3.

The lineup:

YANKEES (36-27, 2nd, 2 GB)
Jeter SS
Damon LF
Teixeira 1B
Rodriguez 3B
Cano 2B
Posada C
Matsui DH
Swisher RF
Cabrera CF

Pitching: LHP CC Sabathia (5-4, 3.68).

The Wangs had their baby. According to Pete Abraham, it’s supposed to bring good luck in Taiwanese culture. The way Wang’s year has gone, we can only hope so.

See the previous post’s comments. The Yanks did the smart thing today! (At least I think so). In order to reinstate Bruney, they could have sent Robertson (who has options) down and kept the out-of-options and ineffective Veras. Instead they finally decided to DFA Veras. Finally. Here is your shot, Robertson.

Pete Abraham reports:

UPDATE, 5:21 p.m.: The New York Times is reporting that Sammy Sosa tested positive for PEDs in 2003.

Not exactly stunning news there. At this point, it’s sort of expected.

Agreed. Not exactly news. Apparently what we all suspected (or most of us anyway) is apparently true.

I believe this is the first time that a Washington team is coming into NY to play the Yanks since 1971. The Yanks went to DC in 2006. If so, (you knew I had to look it up)… the last Washington at Yanks game went like this: Managers, Houk for Yankees, Ted Williams for Washington (Senators). 9-2-71. Yanks pound the Senators 11-1. Bahnsen over Shellenback. HR Felipe Alou. You may (or may not recall) that the last Senators game in Washington before their move to Texas was forfeited to the Yanks when fans overran the field in the top of the 9th, costing the Senators a victory.  

I’m heading out for a while with a friend. Back later.

Recap: A 5-3 win for the Yanks. CC was good, going 7 2/3 and making one mistake. Well, if you think it’s a mistake. A 3-run HR by the (g)nats #9 hitter, Anderson Hernandez. A Yankee Stadium “cheapie”, it cleared the fence by 3 feet. First row HR and it sure didn’t look like one off the bat.

Bruney got one out. Mo got save #497.

Still, the Yanks need two in the 7th to take the lead, then an insurance run in the 9th. The insurance run was on an RBI single by Ramiro Pena, who had to come in for Jeter—removed with ankle soreness. Hopefully Derek is day to day.

Cano was 4 for 4 with  2 RBI.

Alex is down to …. .224. Funny how a guy coming off hip surgery hasn’t been given a day off yet.

 

Ok, now what? Help wanted. Catcher.

Ok, if Jorge is out a while, what kind of catchers are out there? I need to do some research and will be adding on to this as I do.

Seriously, you think the Yanks will go months with Molina and Chris Stewart?

Damian Miller. 38. Retired. Excellent def. catcher and handler of pitchers. SD was interested in him a few weeks ago. Good option. Can bring along the young pitchers. Will do the little things. .237-4-24 in 186 AB last year for the Brewers. Threw out 12 of 36. Righty bat. .262 career hitter. Postseason exp. with 1999 and 2001 D-Backs, 2003 Cubs. Good option for a backup if you can get him out of retirement.

Mike Piazza. 39. 40 in Sept. Hasn’t caught in two years. Threw out only 13 of 110 in 2006. I could probably steal on him and I am S L O W, in my mid-40s and have a Kruk-like beer gut. Piazza still can hit, .275-8-44 as DH for A’s last year. For what it’s worth, backup C, would probably cost too much, and his D would be horrible. Not likely. Don’t see it happening. But imagine the shrieks from Suzyn Waldman if he pulls a Roger from the owner’s booth. That alone might be worth it.

Adam Melhuse. 36. Texas just released him last week. Switch hitter. Was 4 for 20 for Rangers this year. Caught 2 of 4 trying to steal. 94 AB last year (A’s/Texas) .213-1-9. .236 career hitter. Two postseasons with A’s. 11 HR in 2004.

In the ugh category….Sal Fasano is with Richmond (Braves) in AAA. Wil Nieves is with the Nationals.

Catchers that average .277-22-88 aren’t around. We’re talking about someone in Posada who finished 6th in MVP voting last year. No one expected .338 again, but we were hoping for .270-20-80 or so.

I’m pretty beat, so I’ll add on later. Have any ideas or know if any other catchers could be available, feel free to comment. The Yanks may have to look into trades, call someone like Miller out of retirement (best option?) try bringing up a Pilittere from AA.

Other options are:

Doug Mirabelli. The curse of the Mirabelli? .202-5-16 for Boston last year. A .231 career hitter. Hopefully reveals to all Yankee hitters ways in which Beckett, Dice-K, Laptops and Pimplebutt tip their pitches.

……See how many Molina relatives there are…maybe the whole family tree can catch.

Or we can go with…player/manager Girardi. Yup. Interesting mound visits. You got to wonder if, as a catcher, he’d be allowed to go to the mound more often? Hey, circumvent the rules here. Joe’s only 43. .267 career. Granted he only hit .226 in 2002 and 3 for 23 in 2003, but what better way to groom those young pitchers than to catch them yourself?

Butch Wynegar is the hitting coach for SWB….wonder what Rick Cerone is doing?

Hey, Ralph Houk was stuck behind Yogi and Charlie Silvera for years. 91 games, 158 ABs in 8 MLB seasons. Hey, .272! After all these years, OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS FOR THE MAJOR! Managed for many years so we know he can handle pitchers. Heck, he’s only 88. Wonder how the arm is.

Then again, we could always activate Yogi himself…

Hoo-boy.

UPDATE: 12 hours after I listed some names (some names of course, listed in jest), Pete Abraham started to do the same. Between Abraham and the N.Y. Post, here are some other names:

Mike DiFelice. AAA for Rays. Has an out if he gets a major league offer. He’ll be 39 in May. Has already been up with the Rays for a spell, going 6 for 20 this year. 0 HR, 4 RBI. 10 for 40 with the Mets last year, 0 HR, 5 RBI. Righty hitter. A .236 lifetime hitter. Being a catcher and coming from the Rays, he and Shelley Duncan might have some interesting chats.

Josh Paul. AAA for Houston. 33 in May. Was with (drum roll) the Rays last year. 105 AB. .190-1-9. Righty hitter. .244 career average.

I’ve listed the others. Personally, I think I’d look into Damian Miller.