• Heyman: Yanks Love Crawford

    Posted by on February 23rd, 2010 · Comments (45)

    Via Jon Heyman today –

    One reason the Yankees were reluctant to go for a two-year deal for Johnny Damon might have had little to do with Damon and been a greater reflection of what they think of Carl Crawford. The Yankees love him. Crawford is almost sure to be too rich for the low-revenue Rays, and the Yankees jump to the head of the class for interested teams. Remember, too, that the Yankees passed on Matt Holliday. It all seems to set up nicely for Crawford.

    Below is a picture of Crawford’s agent after reading this report from Heyman:

    Two things about Carl Crawford: One, he’s very “street.” Think Mickey Rivers meets Rickey Henderson – not that there’s anything wrong with that. Two, I dunno why…but…I just have this feeling that he’s one of those players who will be out of the game by the time he’s 35 years old. Granted, that’s not until 2017. And, I could be totally wrong on this…and he’ll be a Tim Raines type who plays into his late 30′s.

    I’m just saying…if it were me, I’d be careful about giving him a very long term deal once he hits the free agent market. I’d be very concerned about going more than 5 years on an offer. But, that’s just me…

    Update: Please read my Clearing Up Crawford Comments related to this entry by clicking here.

    Comments on Heyman: Yanks Love Crawford

    1. February 23rd, 2010 | 12:04 am

      Carl Crawford is “street”?

      Anyways, this sounds like Jon Heyman helping Boras spin this. The Yankees offered Damon a two year deal.

    2. Rich
      February 23rd, 2010 | 12:26 am

      I think Heyman’s report is spurious.

    3. February 23rd, 2010 | 12:31 am

      Not sure I get the “street” comment.

    4. MJ Recanati
      February 23rd, 2010 | 8:44 am

      If the Yanks only have X amount to spend in free agency next year, I’d rather they get Cliff Lee instead of Carl Crawford. With Pettitte/Vazquez as impending free agents and Burnett/Chamberlain/Hughes as big question marks in terms of reliability and consistency, Lee addresses a bigger team need (saying this roughly 9 months in advance…we’ll obviously learn more as 2010 gets underway).

    5. Jake1
      February 23rd, 2010 | 8:58 am

      speed guys do not age well into their 30′s. crawford 3 yrs ago would have been nice.

    6. Corey Italiano
      February 23rd, 2010 | 9:07 am

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      If the Yanks only have X amount to spend in free agency next year, I’d rather they get Cliff Lee instead of Carl Crawford.

      agreed

    7. MJ Recanati
      February 23rd, 2010 | 9:20 am

      Jake1 wrote:

      speed guys do not age well into their 30’s. crawford 3 yrs ago would have been nice.

      I tend to agree with this although Crawford has been a good enough player overall to at least consider on a four year deal. After all, Damon was once a “speed” player and he aged just fine in New York from 2006-2009.

      But, like I said above, I’d rather Cliff Lee over any other free agent available next year.

    8. bags
      February 23rd, 2010 | 9:32 am

      I don’t get the “street” comment either. Especially with the “not that there’s anything wrong with that” sorta-non-qualifier-qualifier.

    9. February 23rd, 2010 | 10:12 am

      Just to clarify the “street” comment…

      If you’ve ever heard Crawford interviewed, you probably understand this…

      His communication skills are very far from polished. He’s not Jeter, Granderson, A-Rod or Teixiera like in terms of the way he presents himself verbally.

      Further, have you seen the huge tattoo on the side of his neck? Somehow, I don’t think you’ll see Mariano Rivera or Andy Pettitte running out and getting one of those too.

      But, like I said, when it comes to being a baseball player, this means little – hence the comment “not that there’s anything wrong with that.”

      From Joe Jackson to Mickey Rivers to, well, I dunno, somebody current, there’s been great ball players who weren’t all that smart and couldn’t speak all that well.

      I’m just making the observation about Crawford in case that type of thing is important to you, as a Yankees fan – in case you feel like all Yankees should be Madison Avenue types who walk and talk like commerical spokespeople, etc.

      That’s not Carl Crawford. But, again, doesn’t make him a bad person or a bad ballplayer. Just means he’s got more of a “street” image than a college or boardroom image. And, if you’re like me, and like “real” people, as they are, then it should be a non-issue for you.

    10. February 23rd, 2010 | 10:16 am

      @ Jake1: Actually, pure speed guys sometimes age very well. Brett Butler, Rickey Henderson and Otis Nixon were all running well at late ages. It’s the guys who are not true-burners, but who run well enough to steal at a young age, that usually lose it when they get older, bigger, and start to hit for power.

    11. butchie22
      February 23rd, 2010 | 10:52 am

      MJ Recanati wrote:

      If the Yanks only have X amount to spend in free agency next year, I’d rather they get Cliff Lee instead of Carl Crawford. With Pettitte/Vazquez as impending free agents and Burnett/Chamberlain/Hughes as big question marks in terms of reliability and consistency, Lee addresses a bigger team need (saying this roughly 9 months in advance…we’ll obviously learn more as 2010 gets underway).

      Corey Italiano wrote:

      MJ Recanati wrote:If the Yanks only have X amount to spend in free agency next year, I’d rather they get Cliff Lee instead of Carl Crawford. agreed

      Three brilliant minds think alike. As much as Lee’s services will cost, pitching ultimately wins championships. Though I believe that the Yanks with have an offensive deficit this year. With the Media Savvy Grandie who was Strike Out King NO 9 ( on the ignoble list of number of strikeouts last year), whose OBP is supect and lefty/righty splits show a player who is good from one side.Chris Carlin Johnson will most likely get injured and his lack of pop and speed will not be an assessment. That being said, the Yanks will probably address the offensive deficit after this upcoming season , even though the pitching will be so damn important.

    12. jrk
      February 23rd, 2010 | 11:29 am

      Agreed about Lee – simply because you can NEVER have too much good pitching. I’d take good pitching over good hitting any day. Say Chamberlain becomes a STUD starter this year, Vasquez has a solid year, and Burnett is suprisingly a bit more consistent and a good 2 starter. I’d still go for Lee.

    13. RNG
      February 23rd, 2010 | 1:56 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi: I’m not sure you clarified your comment. Your implication is that because Carl Crawford is inarticulate and has tattoos he may be undesirable for the Yankees. Do these characteristics negatively impact his ability to contribute as a baseball player? Does his neck tattoo make him a bad person? You introduce your concerns about signing Crawford by claiming he’s “street” and then go on to write that there’s nothing wrong with that. Clearly, in your eyes, it is a problem – otherwise you would not have mentioned it. Baseball skills aside, if you have a problem with Crawford because of his background, own that opinion.

    14. February 23rd, 2010 | 2:36 pm

      @ RNG:

      Note that I wrote:

      Two things about Carl Crawford: One, he’s very “street.” Think Mickey Rivers meets Rickey Henderson – not that there’s anything wrong with that. Two, I dunno why…but…I just have this feeling that he’s one of those players who will be out of the game by the time he’s 35 years old.

      You wrote: “Clearly, in your eyes, it is a problem”

      Show me where I wrote that it was a “problem”? I was just making an observation, etc. Never did I say I thought it was a problem.

      I think you’re reaching and trying to put words in my mouth that weren’t there.

    15. MJ Recanati
      February 23rd, 2010 | 3:30 pm

      @ everyone:
      I wonder why a neck tattoo would make someone “street” but a body full of them would be no big deal? CC Sabathia and AJ Burnett are pretty well-inked and Brian Bruney and Jason Giambi were also tattoo enthusiasts. I have no idea but if I had to guess, I’d say that Swisher and Chamberlain probably also have tattoos. Not sure you’d classify any of these guys as “street”, right?

    16. February 23rd, 2010 | 3:48 pm

      @ MJ Recanati:

      You can’t hide a neck tattoo like the ones that Allen Iverson has – or the one on Crawford. It’s sort of like Mike Tyson’s face tattoo too.

      CC, A.J., Giambi and all those other guys with tons of ink, when you put them in a suit, or a pair of pants with a long sleeved shirt, then you would never know about their tats.

      The differnce is being able to hide it, for situations where a tatto being seen is not acceptable or could be seen as offensive.

      You cannot hide a neck or face tattoo. And, guys who get huge tattoos on their neck, or tattoos on their face, don’t care about hiding them. That’s what makes them “street” (and not white collar, or professional, or boardroom, or whatever you want to call that opposite “look.”)

    17. MJ Recanati
      February 23rd, 2010 | 4:03 pm

      @ Steve Lombardi:
      But these guys only wear suits for press conferences. Otherwise, they’re in t-shirts and shorts and spend most of their summers in the short-sleeved version of their uniforms. The ink is on display for all to see.

      I get what you’re saying about the placement of a tattoo being hard to hide in the normal course of life but as athletes these guys have different rules to what “professional” is.

      Incidentally, although I’d never get a tattoo anywhere (or on my face), I think Mike Tyson’s face tattoo is hilarious. I remember when he got it, I couldn’t stop staring at it.

    18. RNG
      February 23rd, 2010 | 5:01 pm

      What is the point of making this observation? It precedes a comment you make about Crawford’s longevity, supporting an argument against signing him. Why include the “street” comment in the same context if it is irrelevant to your reluctance to signing Crawford to a long-term deal? Is your characterization of Crawford important in any other context? If so, you haven’t mentioned it so I’m left to conclude you value this aspect of Crawford as a negative. If you don’t, you should explain why the comment was included in your post if you want to avoid readers like me reaching that conclusion.

    19. February 23rd, 2010 | 7:48 pm

      Do you realize he has one tattoo on his neck which I wouldn’t even call large and it’s the astrological of the Leo? Are Joba, AJ, and Bruney “Street”?

    20. 77yankees
      February 23rd, 2010 | 8:25 pm

      I’ve been saying for months that Carl Crawford should be the Yankees LF in 2011, so nothing to add there.

      However, I should throw out there, that if Cliff Lee and Josh Beckett both make it to the FA market next winter, which one do you think the Yankees would be more “taken” with signing???

    21. BOHAN
      February 24th, 2010 | 1:00 am

      AJ has a tat on his hand and a sleeve on his forearm that u see every single day. And i think the whole Crawford not being a “polished” speaker just comes form not being a very vocal person in general. Some guys just dont like to talk and their just going to very plain and boring. I’m pretty sure he’s a very intelligent person but just doesn’t want to talk to media unless he has to. And i wouldn’t take Cliff Lee over Crawford. Great pitcher but don’t like his mentality towards pitching. Seems very soft mentality to me. Even though i hate signing former Red Sox I would take Beckett over Cliff Lee, because he has that bulldog, real comepetive, give me the ball in a big ill shove the bats up their ass mentality. I love watching Beckett pitch, even against the Yankees. I love watching good pitching.

    22. Raf
      February 24th, 2010 | 8:36 am

      Too much is being made of this “street” comment. Especially in light of what people consider to be a “True Yankee.”

    23. Corey Italiano
      February 24th, 2010 | 9:27 am

      BOHAN wrote:

      Seems very soft mentality to me.

      What makes you say that? He pitched extremely well all year, including the postseason, and pitched one of the best all-time world series games in the process.

    24. MJ Recanati
      February 24th, 2010 | 9:43 am

      Rob Abruzzese wrote:

      it’s the astrological of the Leo

      I’m a leo (7/28) and I had no idea what that was. If the Yanks sign Crawford, I will get that same tattoo.

    25. MJ Recanati
      February 24th, 2010 | 9:46 am

      BOHAN wrote:

      And i wouldn’t take Cliff Lee over Crawford. Great pitcher but don’t like his mentality towards pitching. Seems very soft mentality to me. Even though i hate signing former Red Sox I would take Beckett over Cliff Lee, because he has that bulldog, real comepetive, give me the ball in a big ill shove the bats up their ass mentality.

      Odd that you’d think Cliff Lee is soft after he completely shut down the Yanks pretty much every time he faced us in 2008 and 2009 (WS included).

      I’d take Lee over Beckett any day at this point. Lefty starters that are this good don’t just come around every day.

    26. jaydestro
      February 24th, 2010 | 1:24 pm

      guess what steve, welcome to my first “blogger who made himself into a racist with one dumb piece of analysis club” and right now you are the only member. really your concept of street makes you seem ignorant and quite possibly out of touch.

    27. February 24th, 2010 | 1:49 pm

      Thanks Jay. I’m so happy that I’m providing something for you to Twitter about.

    28. February 26th, 2010 | 5:32 pm

      [...] From Steve Lombardi of Was Watching: [...]

    29. Jason Kozlowski
      February 26th, 2010 | 8:03 pm

      I really have no idea why you would connect signing Crawford for more than five years to any impression of Crawford as “very ‘street.’” You follow it with “not that there’s anything wrong with that.” Then why even mention this? You then proceed to mention a tattoo he has and that his communication is, to you, “very far from polished.” Have you ever watched hockey, a nearly all-white sport? Plenty of hockey players are not close to articulate, and some have tattoos. Does this make them “street?” Did Giambi’s tattoos and speech? Do Swisher’s? Is it the color of Crawford’s skin that invokes your nebulous usage of the term “street?” You don’t mention race, but your post is littered with presumptuous characterizations in which race, as a cultural construct as much if not more than a description of physical characteristics, is unavoidably present.

      Regardless, set aside the superficial, facile social commentary. This post did precious little to illuminate whether or not to sign Crawford, and much to question why to even bother reading you.

    30. KPOcala
      February 26th, 2010 | 10:32 pm

      Steve, it would seem that your comments on Carl Crawford are being stitched together to imply that either Crawford is an imbecile/dirt-bag, or that your a racist. If you haven’t seen the article, read below (http://www.bronxbaseballdaily.com/?p=3557&cpage=1#comment-1930),

      Among the possible free agents in next year’s class that fans have their eye on is left fielder Carl Crawford, but unlike somebody like Cliff Lee, fans are not unanimous in their support for Crawford.

      Many say that he won’t leave Tampa so why bother worrying, some fear that 2008 was an indication that he won’t be worth the money, and most fear that as a speedster his game will have a significant drop-off as he ages. All arguments have their merit, but one that I haven’t heard much concerns his possible character issues.
      From Steve Lombardi of Was Watching:

      Two things about Carl Crawford: One, he’s very “street.” Think Mickey Rivers meets Rickey Henderson – not that there’s anything wrong with that.

      [snip]

      I’m just saying…if it were me, I’d be careful about giving him a very long term deal once he hits the free agent market. I’d be very concerned about going more than 5 years on an offer. But, that’s just me…

      I’ve never really heard much about Crawford having issues with his attitude so I was wondering what “street” meant? Lombardi clarified what he meant in the comments:

      Just to clarify the “street” comment…

      Further, have you seen the huge tattoo on the side of his neck? Somehow, I don’t think you’ll see Mariano Rivera or Andy Pettitte running out and getting one of those too.

      If you’ve ever heard Crawford interviewed, you probably understand this…

      His communication skills are very far from polished. He’s not Jeter, Granderson, A-Rod or Teixiera like in terms of the way he presents himself verbally.

      Is this “street”?
      Lombardi goes on to claim he didn’t mean the “street” comment as a negative quoting himself saying, ‘not that there’s anything wrong with that.’ But it clearly was one of the two reasons he gave for the Yankees “to be careful about signing him.” If he doesn’t view it as a negative, he wouldn’t use it as a reason not to sign him.

      But let’s get back to “street”. In the context he used the term he meant it to be that he doesn’t speak well and has a neck tattoo. Two things about this, Tampa is a relatively small media market and Crawford certainly isn’t an outspoken person, so these two facts probably played a part in Lombardi labeling him a “far from polished” speaker. As far as that tattoos are concerned, I haven’t heard a single person complain about the tattoos of AJ Burnett, Joba Chamberlain, Brian Bruney, and Jason Giambi. But Crawford has a small tat of the astrological sign for Leo and that’s a problem? Alyssa Milano has a neck tattoo, is she “street”?

      His entire argument reeked of something our own Brian Burkhart brought up a couple of weeks ago – subtle racism in baseball. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not here to accuse Lombardi of racism, that’s not for me to decide. My main point is to stomp out any idea that character could be a concern when it comes to the Yankees signing Crawford.

      Is this “street”?
      The idea that they shouldn’t sign Crawford because of a neck tattoo is ridiculous and one that I hope Lombardi or anyone refrains from bringing it up again. It’s silly, especially when we’ve accepted it in so many other players – Burnett has a rather large tattoo on his hand and so far that hasn’t been a problem, it might be ugly and possibly even in bad taste, but I doubt it has effected anyone’s perception of him. We shouldn’t let a neck tat effect our perception of Crawford.

      As for his inability to be an articulate speaker, I’m not sure where that comes from. Again, it could be due to Crawford’s bashfulness and the small market of Tampa, but why should anything that he says keep the Yankees away from him. He’s never said anything close to the phrases we’ve heard from the likes of guys like Gary Sheffield. Besides, actions speak louder than words.

      But again, I’m not too familiar with Crawford off the baseball field, so I enlisted the help of Devon Rogers of the Rays blog, Rise of the Rays for some background on him:

      From all I have seen he is a very positive person. When I am hanging around by the field before the games, he is always joking around with the players, batboys and security staff. He is very well liked by the players and he is one of the fan favorites. His work ethic is one of the best I have seen. They recently did an entire Baseball Tonight episode on his offseason workouts, and they were pretty hard core. He also works hard in BP and plays hard no matter what. He said the other day in the newspaper here that he knows no other level than as hard as he can play.

      Crawford works with Boys & Girls Club and usually runs a baseball clinic at the Trop with CC Sabathia during a Yankees series because Crawford and Sabathia are great friends.

      I would not believe any of the bad things you hear about Crawford because he is a great player and a great person. Any team who gets him will be very lucky, I’m just still holding out hope that it will be us.

      The Yankees have recently been trending toward players who are positive influences in the clubhouse like CC Sabathia and Curtis Granderson. It sounds like Crawford will be closer to these guys than the Gary Sheffield or Kevin Brown types.

      As far as Crawford’s possible character issues, I don’t think there are any. What do you think?

      As to what I think, what a crappy underhanded way to smear another blogger. Especially, when written under the guise of attacking someone’s “perceived” subtle racism. I don’t know what Rob Abruzzese’s angle is here, but it stinks. Anyway here’s one person that enjoys your work even if I don’t always agree, ciao.

    31. February 26th, 2010 | 10:42 pm

      I didn’t mean to smear Steve and I hope he doesn’t take it that way. I merely was trying to point out that people shouldn’t feel this way about Carl Crawford. There have actually been similar articles on the internet that were a lot nastier than Steve’s, even though I don’t think what Steve said was particularly nasty, and my intention was to point out how unfair it is to Crawford to say things like that about him. I don’t think I wrote anything much more than I didn’t already write in the comments of this article.

    32. February 26th, 2010 | 11:41 pm

      @ KPOcala: Thanks for confirming that at least one person read everything that I wrote and understood what I was trying to convey.

      @ Rob Abruzzese: My post on this tonight is the last that I’ll be making on this topic. If you read that one, it’s clear on my feelings about all this.

    33. February 26th, 2010 | 11:52 pm

      [...] a flashback to what brought this all about in the first place. Three days ago, I wrote: Two things about Carl Crawford: One, he’s very “street.” Think Mickey Rivers meets Rickey [...]

    34. February 27th, 2010 | 5:26 am

      Steve, you appear to miss the entire point of this in your “Clearing Up Crawford Comments” post. Rob’s initial post, which referred to a previous post at BBD about race and sports by Brian Burkhart, which referred to a Moshe Mandel post about race and sports at TYU, which cited a Nicholas Kristoff article in the New York Times, which cited the work of Yale psychologist John Dovidio, addressed what Dovidio termed “aversive racism.” This quite clearly delineated racist statements and actions from unconscious racism, in which one makes particular assessments based upon race by addressing other, more “discussable” aspects of a black person–in this case, one’s tattoo and speech as “street”–that one does not for whites. Whether or not you agree, that’s what you did, and can explain why it is that you revere Rickey Henderson and his play, yet also seem quote capable of making biased value judgments toward a black player with criteria not applied to white players.

      In fact, your response also smacks of the “some-of-my-best-friends-are-black” defense by citing Henderson–whether or not you realize that, either. I often prefer to refer to such characterizations as “racialist,” which removes the accusatory stigma that “racist” brings while at the same time pinpointing and emphasizing aspects of race present in a characterization and its interpretations. It explains your characterizations as implicitly about race, i.e. racial, whether or not you initially or subsequently saw them as such.

    35. February 27th, 2010 | 9:53 am

      @ Jason Kozlowski: Do you know me? I don’t know you – so, I would never attempt to offer insight as to whether or not you were a racist or a “racialist’? What are your qualifications and rights to cast these aspersions against me? You doing this “smacks” of something too. And, I’m no longer going to waste my time addressing you on this subject.

    36. February 27th, 2010 | 11:04 am

      I am a Ph.D. student in American history studying working-class history, race and ethnicity, and labor relations, Steve. You lay out an ignorant, superficial assessment of Crawford about what is purportedly “street,” which has obvious racial overtones, then complain about having “aspersions” cast against you. If you can’t hack criticism about such commentary that you publish for anyone to read, criticism which happens to be well deserved, then find something else to do. You come across as an insufferable crybaby.

    37. February 27th, 2010 | 11:17 am

      @ Jason Kozlowski: For someone with such an advanced education and an interest in human history and behavor, you seem, at least here, to have a very quick and easy habit of name-calling. I hope you don’t live in a glass house.

    38. KPOcala
      February 27th, 2010 | 11:33 am

      @ Jason Kozlowski:

      Very impressive that you are so omniscient in discerning all forms of racism at such an early age. Just be forewarned that certitude seems to wane as one grows a little older. Just saying…

    39. shaked
      February 27th, 2010 | 11:51 am

      Steve is a lot of things, but in the 2-3 years I’ve read WW, I have never seen him as a racist, for what it’s worth (albeit not much).

      A lot of people have issues with how Steve feels about the Yankees and certain aspects of the team (myself included). Half of the time I read this site I’m shaking my head in disagreement.

      That being said, there’s no reason to take that aggravation and turn it into a personal attack of this nature. I agree that the comments were not the most politically correct comments that have ever been made. But to say that he is subconsciously a racist? What does that even mean?

      If you want to bash Steve, fine. His insight sucks. He’s all wrong about Cashman. That’s all fine. But to cherry pick details to cast the man as a bigot to people who might not even read him? That’s a low blow.

      I will admit, however, that as I wrote this post, I found it all VERY ironic. But that’s a post for another day. Steve, do you see the irony?

    40. February 27th, 2010 | 12:36 pm

      Steve, I never got the sense that Crawford was all that “street,” whatever that is. He’s never been in trouble that I’ve heard of, and I was impressed with his personality in the interviews I’ve heard him talk. A.J. Burnett has visible tattoos, too, and nobody calls him “street.”

      And what does Rickey Henderson – or Mickey Rivers – have anything to do with Crawford? I didn’t get the sense that Crawford was much like either of them, other than them also being African-American baseball players.

      Besides, I’m a little tired in general of this myth about how every Yankee is supposed to be like Pettitte/Mo/Jeter etc. Yeah, neither of them would have a neck tattoo – or any tattoos, for that matter. What does that have to do with anything? Please, even Michael Kay admitted he was wrong about his “Yankee way” obsession.

    41. Raf
      February 27th, 2010 | 3:10 pm

      So Steve thinks that Crawford is “street.” Big deal. It’s not any different from saying a ballplayer has “soul.” Read up on Dock Ellis sometime. It’s the image that Crawford projects. It’s not wrong, or right, it’s just different. Just like the Yankees project a certain image, or the 1993 Phillies. It’s not wrong, or right, it’s just different.

      Any of you guys are familiar with either Mickey Rivers or Rickey Henderson? The comp seemed apt to me. FWIW, I don’t think either had any tattoos, though I can’t really confirm. Does anyone watch the NBA? Anyone remember when Jason Williams showed up? How did people refer to his game when he played the point for the Kings?

      Steve’s concern with Crawford has nothing to do with his race. It has everything to do with his skillset as a ballplayer. Did anyone bother to look at his comps? Similar ballplayers and what they’ve done at 35+?

    42. February 27th, 2010 | 3:57 pm

      Raf writes: “So Steve thinks that Crawford is “street.” Big deal. It’s not any different from saying a ballplayer has “soul.” So Steve thinks that Crawford is “street.” Big deal. It’s not any different from saying a ballplayer has “soul.” Read up on Dock Ellis sometime. It’s the image that Crawford projects.”

      So tell me – what does Crawford have to do with Dock Ellis, other than their skin color? Ellis was a pitcher with drug, alcohol, and anger management problems who wore curlers on the field and threw a no-hitter on LSD. Has Crawford ever done any such stunt like that? If so, cite your evidence – I’ve never heard of any such thing about him. If not, you owe Crawford an apology. (And please, your “soul” analogy is ridiculous too. Nobody talks that way anymore.)

      “Any of you guys are familiar with either Mickey Rivers or Rickey Henderson? The comp seemed apt to me….Steve’s concern with Crawford has nothing to do with his race. It has everything to do with his skillset as a ballplayer. Did anyone bother to look at his comps? Similar ballplayers and what they’ve done at 35+?”

      Except for the fact that Henderson played until age 44 (and led the league in stolen bases at age 39.) And that Rivers is unfortunately more remembered by today’s audiences more for spending his money at the race track than for his skills as a player. And that the hitter who is really the most similar at that age to Crawford, according to Baseball-Reference, is baseball hero Roberto Clemente, who still had great skills at age 37.

    43. February 27th, 2010 | 4:10 pm

      And for the record – I don’t think Steve’s a racist. Just disagree with his analogies here.

    44. February 27th, 2010 | 7:45 pm

      Steve’s analogy made me uncomfortable right away, but I really was uncertain from the structure of the post how he meant it. I will say this.

      Studies have shown that most of us, due to the society we live in, exhibit some form of aversive racism. It is below the surface, and it doesnt make you a racist. I’ll be perfectly up front: Harvard has an association test that tests for this sort of thing, and although I like to consider myself above race and liberal, I didnt score perfectly, and was in fact disappointed by my score. It doesnt make me a racist, nor does Steve’s comment make him a racist unless he meant it as a racial slight, which I do not believe it was (from reading here for years). Basically, what Im trying to say is that the comment may have been an example of aversive racism, but that doesnt make Steve a racist and it shouldnt be taken that way, neither by the people making the observation, nor by Steve.

    45. February 27th, 2010 | 8:21 pm

      Been unplugged for the last 7 hours or so – enjoying the day with my family…though, should I dare share that and run the risk of Rob, Jason, some idiot called “The Professor,” and all the Twitterin’ Twits taking that statement and then claiming that I spent the day at a Klan meeting?

      Look, as much as I hate to close comments, I gotta do this now. This thing is as far off-topic as can be…no one is discussing whether or not the Yankees should sign Carl…and now it’s just a conversation about me…with many attacking me, questioning my character, etc. Hence, the closure.

      Thanks to those who have offered comments in support, confirming that they understand what I was conveying, etc. Much appreciated – as it’s good to know that somebody gets it.