Mike Silva's New York Baseball Digest » Blog Archive » Jeter’s Wire, Rickey Speaks, Cone in Mets Booth, Is Lowe the Right Fit

Jeter’s Wire, Rickey Speaks, Cone in Mets Booth, Is Lowe the Right Fit

By Mike Silva ~ July 15th, 2011. Filed under: Morning Digest.

Bob Raissman talks with David Check of MLB Productions about the upcoming documentary on Derek Jeter‘s 3,000th hit. “Derek Jeter 3K,” as it will be called, will have an inside look at his quest for 3,000 hits starting with the rehab in Tampa. You will get to see Jeter behind the scenes and wearing a wire during his 5 for 5 historic day. Selling Jeter on the wire was difficult, but Check accomplished this by playing video of Cal Ripken‘s final visit to Yankee Stadium in 2001, which was wired.

The funny part of the piece is how paranoid the Yankees were about the Jeter wire, as they constantly reminded everyone of it in the clubhouse. Jeter will see the HBO documentary before it airs so I am sure any curse words or scandalous quotes would have been edited. As was pointed out in the comments section here, the Showtime documentary “The Franchise” took on a “milk and cookies” undertone that is not exactly MLB reality. Regardless, you have to mainstream these pieces so it’s not a surprise you would get a G-Rated version.


Joe Benigno and Evan Roberts of WFAN interviewed Rickey Henderson the other day. As usual, Rickey was not at a loss for words. When the topic of Derek Jeter skipping the All Star Game came up Henderson said that he thinks he (Jeter) should have been at the game. Funny, I remember Rickey doing various “shutdowns,” mainly because of unhappiness with his contract. I don’t remember Henderson ever skipping an All Star Game though.

Rickey also compared the managerial styles of Billy Martin and Bobby Valentine, talked about the runs scored record being his most cherished, and clarified the misperception that he was playing cards with Bobby Bonilla in the clubhouse during Game 6 of the 1999 NLCS. Henderson believes the Mets lost that game because Bobby Valentine switched him out of it.

One amazing story was how Rickey said that some scouts weren’t sold on him because he threw left-handed and batted right-handed. This is a baseball oddity and historically no great players do it. Fortunately, for Oakland, they looked past this insignificant fact and drafted him because of the talent he displayed. Isn’t it amazing some of the things that baseball believes is important?

Henderson is always entertaining and you should give it a listen.


Speaking of Jeter and the All Star Game. The Captain was back to his agitated self when talking about his absence. He seemed to take exception to Lance Berkman saying “if you get selected to be here you have an obligation. You gotta be here.”

The aforementioned David Check talked about how much Jeter respects Cal Ripken. It’s funny; Jeter not going to the All Star Game was very unlike Ripken. He continued to talk about how he needed to rest his calf, even pointing out how it probably won’t get better till after the season (shot at his DL stint).

Again, Jeter didn’t have to play, just show up to be part of the festivities. Of course, he would have missed a little R&R with his movie star girlfriend if he did.

Remember, Jeter always seemed to do the right thing until a certain person came in his life. Makes you wonder, right?


Joe and Evan talked yesterday about how much fun it would be to have David Cone in the SNY booth. Cone is fast becoming an internet favorite because of his openness to advanced statistics. The duo believes Cone’s real value is his personality teamed up with Ron Darling or Keith Hernandez. Cone has said that he had a great time with the “Mets off the field, and one the field with the Yankees.” Imagine the stories the three of them could have (edited for television of course). If you remember, Cone was a big time party guy early in his career. He was the center of two scandals: one accusation where a woman claimed he masturbated in front of her in the Mets bullpen and he was also accused of rape. Cone would clear his name on both counts, but admitted to New York Magazine in 1999 that he put himself in a position where inaccurate stories could be connected to his name.

One story that was told to me by one of Cone’s teammates was a “streaking incident” on the Mets charter flight. Cone was sitting in the back (drinking), and manager Jeff Torborg brought his wife on the trip with him. One of Torborg’s “ideas” was to make road trips more family friendly. Well, as mentioned before, baseball is not a G-Rated movie. Sometimes family and road trip don’t mix (if you get my drift). Anyway, Cone decided to show Torborg’s wife baseball life by streaking naked to the front of the plane where she was sitting. It sounded kind of like Frank the Tank in the movie “Old School.”

Cone is no longer the same person that was a member of those wild late eighties Mets teams. In that same New York Magazine article he admitted the trade from the Mets to Toronto was a wakeup call, and he needed to stop being a pitcher with “great stuff, some of the best stuff in the big leagues as far as pitching goes, and also one of the biggest flakes.”

I have listened to Cone on YES and during interviews and I love his style. I think he would be a good pitching coach one day if he so desired. Just hearing him talk pitching with Darling would be a treat. I like how he understands pitching and is open to some of the modern thought on how to assess its effectiveness.


Bartolo Colon getting shelled and admitting his hamstring is still an issue last night was the worst possible way for the second half to start. Again, and I don’t mean to sound like a broken record, but the Yankees are going to make the playoffs whether they make a move or not. Tampa proved this past weekend they are not in the same league. What does concern me is their ability to navigate a short series when your rotation is CC Sabathia and a bunch of question marks. Colon has been a #2 this year, but a hamstring injury can linger and he isn’t exactly young or in good shape. Enter the talk about who the Yankees can acquire via a trade.

I continue to believe Francisco Liriano is the best “high end ace” type of acquisition. He comes with risk, as his work ethic has been questions and he has a history of injuries. He is also having a lousy year (5-7, 5.06) which makes you wonder how effective he will be anyway. Liriano won’t come cheap either as you would imagine Jesus Montero would have to be the center of any package. Remember, there is talk of Joe Mauer switching positions so it’s logical to believe the Twins would want a catcher in return.

For two years we have talked about Derek Lowe and the Yankees on this site. Lowe has another year and a half on his contract that paid him $60 million over four years. He has a history of success in the American League East. Historically for the Braves, he’s pitched his best down the stretch in September. Considering the Yankees would be absorbing payroll you might be able to trade him for a very reasonable package. Although Atlanta is leading the Wild Card, their starting pitching is a strength. With tons of arms down on the farm, Lowe could be considered excess. The problem is the Braves are looking for a bat and I don’t see how the Yankees are a match unless it’s a pure salary dump type of deal. You can’t give up a top prospect for a 38 year old starter due $16 million dollars next year.

The Yanks aren’t in a great spot right now. They may have to overpay for a starter, or roll the dice and hope that Colon can get healthy or Phil Hughes steps up and takes his place.

Their offense will carry them the rest of the season. That won’t be possible in the playoffs.


Darren Rovell of CNBC talks about his “100 Twitter Rules,” which are a good guideline for anyone.

Number 20 stood out to me:

 Just because you are getting slammed doesn’t mean you should blame Twitter. Learn to absorb the hate and get a thicker skin, it’s useful in life.

This is so true. I find that people don’t like to be criticized in this business. If you want to put your name out there, whether it be with an affiliated newspaper or freelance like me, you have to expect the public to come after you. Rovell is 100% correct about the “thick skin” quote. Unfortunately, many large media conglomerates don’t have such a thick skin and don’t want two-way dialogue. That’s what happens when you work in the sanitized corporate bubble where every idea you have is considered “brilliant.”

Fans want to interact and debate. Can it get ugly? Sure, but most are just angry about your sports opinion and will not attack you personally.

Sometimes disagreeing with a baseball opinion hurts others feelings. Again, some want to make this a “club” where you have common talking points and thought processes. When that happens you are no different than any big media conglomerate that dictates the content.

There is no club, just free thought.


Trenton Thunder beat reporter Mike Ashmore tweets a new sign on the Thunder broadcast booth, which was dedicated to Phillies broadcaster Tom McCarthy. Tom was elected into the Trenton Baseball Hall of Fame last night. He will appear on my Sunday show to talk broadcasting and memories from his days in Trenton.


Bud Selig claims he watches the Pirates and Indians every day. Is Selig rooting for these teams so he can justify the flawed economic system that MLB employs? Let’s face it, even if those teams finally are turning the corner it won’t be sustainable for more than 2-3 years. Once their arbitration eligible players make money, they will have to be dealt. Pittsburgh needs a similar player development system to what we see in Tampa Bay. You have to treat your team like a college program and retool every two years. There is such a large margin of error with that process it’s virtually impossible to see more than short periods of prosperity. Selig can watch, hope, and pray every day for these two “little engines that could” to make it deep into the playoffs. Until the system changes it won’t matter.

What will be a huge help is a second Wild Card. This will negate the financial advantages of the top teams, who really have to screw up not to make the playoffs on a yearly basis. Perhaps then you will see the kind of parity that will grow the game going forward.

Mike Silva is a freelance writer and radio host since March of 2007. This website is his own personal "digest" of New York Baseball He's also hosts NYBD Radio on Blog Talk Radio and 1240 AM WGBB. Check out his sports media commentary at www.sportsmediawatchdog.com. Check out his official website, www.mikesilvamedia.com
Mike Silva
View all posts by Mike Silva
Mikes website

Post to Twitter Post to Yahoo Buzz Post to Delicious Post to Digg Post to Facebook

Leave a Reply