FanDuel - WFBC

May 06, 2007

The Rocket Lands In New York...Again.:
Roger Clemens announced his return to the NY Yankees during the 7th inning stretch of Sunday's game against the Mariners.

posted by grum@work to baseball at 02:32 PM - 132 comments

Called it! (as did other people)

posted by grum@work at 02:35 PM on May 06

The Red Sox are playing great ball, and have a great rotation, but I still think the East is going to be a dogfight before it's all over.

posted by dyams at 02:38 PM on May 06

God knows the Yanks need pitching help right now. The only question is whether the Rocket has anything left in the tank.

posted by sickleguy at 03:10 PM on May 06

Maybe he can blow a hammy and show the rest of the walking wounded how to rehabilate it.

posted by jwhite613 at 03:24 PM on May 06

Since he's not headed for Boston, I'll shove the sour grapes in my mouth and point out that he's a six inning pitcher now.

posted by YukonGold at 03:25 PM on May 06

Since he's not headed for Boston, I'll shove the sour grapes in my mouth and point out that he's a six inning pitcher now. But it's a fantastic six innings! I'm pretty sure the boys at FOX/MLB are salivating his return to the NY/BOS rivalry. Quick note: Yankees are in Boston on the weekend of June 1st, which would be a likely return date if he has a bunch of minor league stints.

posted by grum@work at 03:27 PM on May 06

This comes at a good time for the Yankees--I just saw a story saying that Carl Pavano will have elbow surgery and is out for 12-18 months, effectively ending his career with the Yanks Looks like 5 wins is worth $40 million for Pavano.

posted by jm_mosier at 04:13 PM on May 06

I'm pretty sure the boys at FOX/MLB are salivating his return to the NY/BOS rivalry. Now there's an angle even Yankee fans will have to groan about.

posted by YukonGold at 05:14 PM on May 06

Oof. My first thought was "hope he likes pitching for no decision-- the Yankees need a bullpen to handle a short starter like him." But then I checked his stats from last year and it looks like Houston might have helped him get used to that.

posted by Mayor Curley at 05:20 PM on May 06

Since he's not headed for Boston, I'll shove the sour grapes in my mouth and point out that he's a six inning pitcher now. Should be great considering how Joe Torre apparently is trying to kill Proctor, Bruney and Viscaino. Since it seems to have come down to money, if the Red Sox paid 28m (prorated down to whatever it ends up being) this year for Clemens, I think it would have really pissed me off.

posted by jerseygirl at 05:38 PM on May 06

He never gave the Astros a chance to talk, let alone counter. They found out when I found out. What a class act.

posted by smithnyiu at 05:50 PM on May 06

I have to say (and this is all eligible for recall if they shoot past the Sox and knock us out of contention) that I am pleased as punch. I really didn't even dislike the Yankees this year. And not just because they aren't playing well, there just wasn't a good villain there. It would have pained me to have him here. Maybe we shouldn't lionize players who play through pain anymore, but I've no interest in cheering for someone who doesn't want to show up except on his own terms.

posted by yerfatma at 05:57 PM on May 06

But then I checked his stats from last year and it looks like Houston might have helped him get used to that. The difference between Houston and the Yankees in 2006 was about 1.2 runs per game of offense. If Clemens had gotten this boost in offense, he'd have won quite a few more decisions. In 2007, it's 4.34 (Houston) vs 6.04 (NYY). I sure as hell would rather pitch in front of the Yankee offense than the Houston one. He never gave the Astros a chance to talk, let alone counter. They found out when I found out. What a class act. I didn't realize that free agents were obligated to contact organizations that didn't offer arbitration to them the off-season before. If Houston really wanted him, they'd have offered him arbitration. I'm not sure why he has to do them any favours. Boston was talking with Clemens agent as late as Thursday, so I don't know why Houston would have been blocked from talking with him.

posted by grum@work at 06:11 PM on May 06

$28M for the season! So much for the new, salary-dumping, youth-focused Yankees. Still, not a bad investment. The Yankees are not as bad as their record, and the Sox are good (will be better when Manny starts hitting) but certainly not invincible. Heck, the bullpen even allowed a couple runs this week. Should be great considering how Joe Torre apparently is trying to kill Proctor, Bruney and Viscaino. To be fair, Torre's attempted murder is aided and abetted by the traveling clown show that passes for a starting rotation in the Bronx these days.

posted by tieguy at 06:12 PM on May 06

Just like yerfatma, I too was almost beginning to almost feel sorry for the Yankees. I have just been given the cold slap in the face to awaken me to the mandatory hatred of the Steinbrenner AC that is the duty of all Red Sox fans. It's going to be fun again.

posted by Howard_T at 06:48 PM on May 06

I'm glad Clemens didn't go back to the Sox. It still bugs me that he didn't give anywhere near full effort for the final part of his Sox career, then goes to other teams and reinvents his career and becomes a supernatural force. When you're as talented as Clemens is, if you're a real pro and not an overpaid head case, you step up and demonstrate convincingly that you're a world class player at every stop along the highway. On the other hand, would you be able to go at full tilt in Boston year in and year out if you had talented and knowledgeable shrieking maniacs in the local media like Ryan, Shaughnessy, and McDonough the elder (now deceased) questioning the worth of your existence and making your life miserable 24/7? Those guys create a nasty, effete, accusatory sports climate in the region and have run more than a few good athletes out of town. Some of those athletes deserved it, some most certainly did not. I've never seen a newspaper sports staff that possesses the Globe crew's unique combination of intelligence, historic perspective, astuteness, and knuckle wrenching, life-numbing Calvinist hysteria. You'd think that a bit of wisdom and restraint would accompany their insights and intelligence. No way - their approach to sportswriting is as follows: Moose just found out that Jughead's been winking at Midge. Clear the way, there's going to be hell to pay. As Shaughnessy himself would say: Yeesh. Enough already.

posted by beaverboard at 07:36 PM on May 06

NY media isn't great either, beaverboard. But this thread isn't about the media.

posted by jerseygirl at 07:40 PM on May 06

i dont think hes gonna be good for much more than era of around 4 and maybe 9 victories but id rather he suck in a yankee jersey then dominate in a redsox jersey

posted by bronxbomber at 07:41 PM on May 06

Oh, and Neyer makes an interesting point (sadly, can't read all of it, since I'm not an Insider anymore) that Roger has been racking up his good numbers in recent years against the worst-hitting division in the less offensively potent league. Obviously, if anyone can smoothly pull off the switch back to the AL East, it would be Clemens, but it isn't as much of a gimmie as people seem to be assuming right now. Will be interesting to see how that plays out. (And if anyone who is an insider wants to shoot me that entire Neyer article, I'm easy to find :)

posted by tieguy at 08:30 PM on May 06

I think the criticisms about Clemens being a six-inning pitcher are moot. Given the way the Pavano Drama continues to play out, it looks like Clemens is taking a rotation slot that would otherwise be filled by a young rookie who would likely be babied through the season. Basically, the Yanks are upgrading their untested five-inning rookie-du-jour for a Hall of Fame six-inning pitcher. That's a pretty good upgrade, and Torre will sleep better with one fewer guy he has to worry about pacing. He can burn Clemens all he wants, especially in October (if they get there) without worrying about what it means for next year. There is no way Clemens is going to match his Astros numbers, but it doesn't matter. Bottom line, Clemens is still going to be the better starting pitcher in 90-95% of his matchups, which puts the Yankees in a much better position to win his games. His ERA isn't going to mean much to anybody if he goes 10-2 over 20 starts. You can spin it anyway you want, this is a big upgrade for the Yanks.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 09:47 PM on May 06

I too was almost beginning to almost feel sorry for the Yankees... aw shucks Howard, and we were really counting on your sympathy this year too.

posted by goddam at 09:54 PM on May 06

It still bugs me that he didn't give anywhere near full effort for the final part of his Sox career His last 5 seasons with the Red Sox, he had ERA+ of: 175 105 177 115 142 I can't imagine that should be considered as "less than full effort". His 105 ERA+ was during a season he was injured (and ended up throwing less than 200IP for the first time in 8 seasons), and the 115 ERA+ came after the work stoppage, when teams had shortened/rushed spring training. Remember, he left the Red Sox after 1996 because they thought he was "done" and didn't want to give him a long term contract. Whoops.

posted by grum@work at 10:51 PM on May 06

Remember, he left the Red Sox after 1996 because they thought he was "done" and didn't want to give him a long term contract. Whoops. posted by grum@work And remember how he then said he wanted to play closer to home and signed with toronto? Whoops.

posted by justgary at 12:26 AM on May 07

And remember how he then said he wanted to play closer to home and signed with toronto? Whoops. posted by justgary As a Blue Jay fan, I consider the back-to-back Cy Young/Pitching Triple Crown seasons with Toronto as a positive thing, so I give that one a big thumbs up! I was just referencing Dan Duquette's famous "twilight of his career" comment, and how he's gone 156-67 since then.

posted by grum@work at 12:36 AM on May 07

As a Blue Jay fan, I consider the back-to-back Cy Young/Pitching Triple Crown seasons with Toronto as a positive thing, so I give that one a big thumbs up! And then demanding a trade to a contender? I was just referencing Dan Duquette's famous "twilight of his career" comment, and how he's gone 156-67 since then. Well, there's a reason Duquette's gone.

posted by justgary at 12:44 AM on May 07

Clemens is as close to Machiavellian as it gets in baseball.

posted by igottheblues at 03:13 AM on May 07

Bottom line, Clemens is still going to be the better starting pitcher in 90-95% of his matchups, which puts the Yankees in a much better position to win his games. I think that sums it up pretty well.

posted by dyams at 07:16 AM on May 07

Good luck in NYC, Rocket.

posted by texasred at 07:21 AM on May 07

It still bugs me that he didn't give anywhere near full effort for the final part of his Sox career, then goes to other teams and reinvents his career and becomes a supernatural force. You can thank Dan Duquette for that since he's the one who thought that the Rocket was in the "twilight of his career" (his words). Great prediction there, buddy!

posted by BornIcon at 07:51 AM on May 07

This comes at a good time for the Yankees--I just saw a story saying that Carl Pavano will have elbow surgery and is out for 12-18 months, effectively ending his career with the Yanks Digression time: can we just award me the DL Fantasy Team right now? The pessimist in me says he'll be an expensive non-producing drama queen, but I'll choose to be optimistic...at least until he gets lit up in his first start (and wouldn't that July 1 game be perfect for it, too?).

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:51 AM on May 07

It's a good thing the Yankees don't put names on the back of their unis. I don't think you could fit "SELFABSORBEDJACKASS".

posted by wfrazerjr at 08:46 AM on May 07

Lets see, it's May, time to play some baseball. Now, who do I want to play for, the Astros, Red Sox or Yanks? As always, we'll start with the Yankees and go from there. You want to pay me how much?? For one year, right? Oh, okay, I guess you talked me into it, let everyone know I'm coming. I'm kinda sick of this yearly ritual, to tell you the truth. Enough already.

posted by eccsport78 at 08:54 AM on May 07

That was ridiculous, that little scene at Yankee stadium yesterday. Steinbrenner masterfully played up Rahg's ego, it would seem offering him the chance to be the 'saviour' on a club that is well, not really in need of saving so much as some healthier pitchers. (It's still a team of All-Stars with at least 3 Hall of Famers. Now 4.) So Rahg gets to step to the mic and proclaim his Yankeedom in front of the faithful and get what he wants most - a bag full of money (no big deal there) and his ass kissed by thousands. I guess everyone wins. I just don't think he's a $28 million pitcher though. Where would you put him in today's game? He's extremely high maintenance, will pull himself from important games if he doesn't feel 100%, can't pitch past 6 innings or 100 pitches, and has moved to the AL - which still has, what, nine teams that hit better than the whole NL save the Mets?. The Yankees still need bullpen help (which I assume they'll get, but in the meantime, ugh) - so does that sound like a number 1 guy to you? I don't think this puts the Yankees anywhere beyond the headlines. I just don't see it as a great move other than the fact that: a) They can pay him - who cares what he makes (but if he starts out 1-3 with a 4+ ERA, I hope they boo him like ARod). b) The Red Sox didn't get him. Wasn't that a big consideration?

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:06 AM on May 07

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posted by jerseygirl at 09:47 AM on May 07

-He is old. -He is washed up. -His careeer should have been over years ago. -He does this shit yearly, the Roger auction for his services. -Why would they give him all that $$$?? Hes not worth it -He is an asshole. -He sold out. These are all comments I have read above. All that being said........ It is game 7 of the world series. List 2 other people you would rather have on the mound.

posted by Debo270 at 10:08 AM on May 07

Not going to read the guidelines and find out, huh? List 2 other people you would rather have on the mound. Are we talking Clemens now or Clemens X amount of years ago? Off the top of my head... Schilling. Santana. Halladay.

posted by jerseygirl at 10:21 AM on May 07

beaverboard, while jerseygirl is right about the point of this thread, let me briefly thank for for the Calvinist reference in your point against the media. That made me smile.

posted by brainofdtrain at 10:24 AM on May 07

It is game 7 of the world series. List 2 other people you would rather have on the mound. I could list quite a few, especially given that by that point in the season Clemens, of late, has been very unreliable. See, e.g., game one of the 2005 WS, where his ERA was a stunning (not in a good way) 13.5. And that was two years ago. To be fair to Clemens, given the way this season is going for the Yankees, this pickup is probably more about defending the AL East title than it is about game 7 of the World Series. In that respect, the question is not really 'is he better than everyone else in the league' (no), the questions are (1) is he an upgrade over at least some of the Yankee's starters? (undeniably yes; you have to assume he is their #3 starter right now, maybe #2.) (2) is he better than any other available free agent right now? (again, undeniably yes). You could argue (3) is he better than any of the Yankee's pitching prospects who could be brought up instead? but given how poorly they've pitched when called up so far, the answer probably has to be again yes. So... not a bad deal for the Yankees. Will it get them to Game 7 of the World Series? I'm guessing not. But it can't hurt. Also, see this interesting take on the financial aspect of the deal. This deal is definitely about pride and ego, but it may be more about Steinbrenner's than the Rocket's.

posted by tieguy at 10:27 AM on May 07

I have read the guidelines and know the rulle. I am just a dick sometimes and like to joke around sorry. I will give you Schilling and so far this year Santana has looked good but does he have the big game experience. Thats what Roger brings. He is like Dominic Hasek in hockey. No pressure will get to him and he brings the same level of play day in and day out. When the shit is on, the pressure won't bother him.

posted by Debo270 at 10:30 AM on May 07

Dont we do this with the yankees to much. They start slow, everyone panics, they go on late season tear and win the division.

posted by Debo270 at 10:32 AM on May 07

The money is flowing like wine. Steinbrenner didn't stop the buying at Clemens, evidently. It is game 7 of the world series. List 2 other people you would rather have on the mound. El Duque. And Derek Lowe. Dammit.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 10:46 AM on May 07

They start slow They haven't started this slow in a long, long time. Their pitching staff is not just beat up, but historically beat up. So this is different. Is it different enough that Yankees fans should panic? Probably not. But it is different. (And the fact that the Yankees can just write a $28M check to cover up the problems with the staff, and the Sox can make an $18M offer just to keep him away from the Bronx, is why the rest of the league should be pissed. These are opportunities to correct failure and play strategic games that no one else in the league has.)

posted by tieguy at 10:48 AM on May 07

On May 7, 2005, the Yankees were 12-19 and in 4th place. Before today's games, they sit 14-15 and in 2nd place. On edit: These are opportunities to correct failure and play strategic games that no one else in the league has.) Are you sure? Just because team's limit the amount they are willing to spend doesn't mean they don't have the means. I honestly don't know the inner workings of baseball's economics or how much cash teams would have if they took a break-even approach, but the skeptic in me believes many teams are hoarding what they should be spending.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 10:58 AM on May 07

(And the fact that the Yankees can just write a $28M check to cover up the problems with the staff, and the Sox can make an $18M offer just to keep him away from the Bronx, is why the rest of the league should be pissed. These are opportunities to correct failure and play strategic games that no one else in the league has.) I feel your pain, but until the rest of the league comes up with a remedy that won't cause more problems than it solves, the rest of the league is just gonna have to suck it up, unfortunately.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 10:58 AM on May 07

I think Roger has a bigger contract than the Pirates as a team

posted by Debo270 at 11:00 AM on May 07

Interesting data point, by the way: the Yankees are not just allowing a tonload of runs (in the lower half of the league) they are scoring a serious tonload of runs (174 runs; next most scored in the AL is Detroit with 161.) So if they shape up their pitching they still have a lot of firepower to chase down the Sox with. I'm sure the Sox are not comfortable- they know it could easily take ~110 wins to take the division this year. (Granted that would require the Yankees going something like .730 the rest of the way, but that isn't completely implausible if the pitching staff heals, Abreu starts hitting, and ARod doesn't fall too far off his pace.)

posted by tieguy at 11:00 AM on May 07

He is like Dominic Hasek in hockey. Ah! this is actually a quite good comparison. Two borderline nutcases who've come out of retirement and have a tendency to develop suspect injuries when the going gets tough. No pressure will get to him and he brings the same level of play day in and day out. When the shit is on, the pressure won't bother him. So wrong. Both players are proven regular season performers, with uneven playoff records. They've done the job with loaded teams in front of them, but they're both suspected of having walked out on their teams at crucial times.

posted by qbert72 at 11:17 AM on May 07

Crafty, my understanding is that many teams are hoarding their cash, b/c unless they want to take colossal losses b/c of the smaller market they're in, they have to. The NY & Boston markets are big, and can afford to drop a lot of $$$ because of that. Teams like the Royals are actually profitable, but the only way they can be is to spend low, hence why we always suck. Hopefully smaller market teams can find an owner who just wants to win, but i'm pretty sure most owners would rather not be poor.

posted by brainofdtrain at 11:27 AM on May 07

Two borderline nutcases who've come out of retirement and have a tendency to develop suspect injuries when the going gets tough. I dont know about that. Hasek has a groin that could explode getting out of bed

posted by Debo270 at 11:56 AM on May 07

big game experience. Thats what Roger brings Unfortunately, most of those big games ended in losses. He does bring Ninja Turtle shoelaces, and those are probably back in style this summer. "With this Rocket situation there's two kinds of people: people that are not surprised and morons." - Lance Berkman

posted by yerfatma at 12:01 PM on May 07

Dont we do this with the yankees to much. They start slow, everyone panics, they go on late season tear and win the division. posted by Debo270 Exactly! They start slow They haven't started this slow in a long, long time. Their pitching staff is not just beat up, but historically beat up. So this is different. Is it different enough that Yankees fans should panic? Probably not. But it is different. posted by tieguy On May 7, 2005, the Yankees were 12-19 and in 4th place. Before today's games, they sit 14-15 and in 2nd place. posted by The Crafty Sousepaw Tieguy's comment was quickly disposed of. Haha. Wow sportsfilter seems to be run by redsox fans. Most of these comments have been by redsox fans. They act like if they dont care, saying that they didnt need him. But we will see at the end of the season, as always. Haha.

posted by STUNNER at 12:09 PM on May 07

and also, haha.

posted by jerseygirl at 12:14 PM on May 07

many teams are hoarding their cash, b/c unless they want to take colossal losses b/c of the smaller market they're in, they have to. Yes, I have been told that as well. Hasek has a groin that could explode getting out of bed Know him pretty well, do ya?

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 12:18 PM on May 07

I think, jg, you meant 'haha.' (Past that... not going to waste my breath with anyone who thinks that alleging that this place is 'run by redsox fans' is a meaningful or interesting contribution. Let me know when the morons have gotten bored and moved on...)

posted by tieguy at 12:21 PM on May 07

actually yes we drink together.

posted by Debo270 at 12:39 PM on May 07

"With this Rocket situation there's two kinds of people: people that are not surprised and morons." - Lance Berkman Totally off-topic, but Lance Berkman has to be developing into one of the great quote machines in baseball these days. On accusations (a few seasons ago) by Milton Bradley that former Berkman teammate Jeff Kent's problems with Bradley were racially motivated: “I think [for Milton Bradley] to make it a race issue is ridiculous. J.K. doesn’t discriminate against anybody. He ignores Latinos, blacks and whites equally.” To bring this back on topic, Joe Sheehan has a good piece at (the dread) Baseball Prospectus today on the Clemens signing. His conclusion:

Here’s the best argument for the Yankees spending $26 million on Clemens: he was probably going to the Red Sox if they didn’t. So if you’re the Yankees, you haven’t just made a two-win, maybe three-win, improvement; you’ve prevented the Red Sox from doing about the same, given Clemens’ edge over Julian Tavarez or a rehabbing Jon Lester. Taking that into consideration, and the signing is worth four to six wins, which makes it both economically sensible and gives it a greater potential to impact what should be a very good race in the AL East. The real winners here are the fans, who get a couple dozen more chances to see the greatest pitcher of our lifetimes. Who says the Yankees are bad for baseball?

posted by holden at 12:49 PM on May 07

I have avoided this thread for the last 24 hours, but every time I turn on SportsCenter I see a new analyst picking up the pompoms and doing a little woowoo dance for this move. It was inevitable. The Yankees were so depleted they were paying homeless guys ten bucks a pop to go and start games. The Mets are legitimate winners, and A-Rod isn't melting down, so the headlines were going away from them. The only thing they have is a huge bucket of money. Which, incidentally, is the only thing Rocket cares about. I watched the press conference, waiting in vain for him to speak of the Yankees as a team. He spoke of his "friends" on the team, of Andy and Derek and how he couldn't wait to get back to hanging out with them one day out of every five, but nothing about the team. I was foolish to expect such a deviaton from the norm. For Yankee fans' sake, I hope this isn't the year the wheels fall off the wagon, or the year he gets busted or implicated in the Great Scandal Of Our Time.

posted by chicobangs at 12:50 PM on May 07

Name 2? Shit. I could name 10. Clemens has nice numbers, but I don't think you could call him a big game pitcher: Game 6 - 1986 WS - leaves in the 7th with a blister. You know, so he can be okay for his next start.... In April of the next year. Game 2 - 1990 ALCS - Gets kicked out for arguing balls and strikes in the 2nd damn inning. He's 3-0 in the WS with 5 no-decisions. His career post-season ERA is 2/3 of a run higher than his regular season. He's good - but there have been many better. In the post-season at least. I hate the cat - but he was best pitcher I've ever seen. You know, a few years ago. Now I think he's ripe for a big fall.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:11 PM on May 07

Another season, another reason to hate Roger Clemens. An open letter from a Sox fan (Seth Stevenson). My favorite line as a once and future disgruntled fan: "Also: You are fat. They say you've got this hard-core training regimen, with calisthenics and whatnot. I'm not seeing it. You're wicked fat." I love regressing to schoolyard put-downs when it comes to fandom. Not so much from those anyomous folks on Sports Radio call-ins, but in print which is basicaly an admission that you are behaving like an ass but you don't care.

posted by gradys_kitchen at 02:53 PM on May 07

I think, jg, you meant 'haha.' (Past that... not going to waste my breath with anyone who thinks that alleging that this place is 'run by redsox fans' is a meaningful or interesting contribution. Let me know when the morons have gotten bored and moved on...) posted by tieguy at 12:21 PM CDT on May 7 HAHA As Nelson from the Simpsons would say. Anyways tieguy, refering to your comment, have you gotten bored and moved on? Got'em. (high five).

posted by STUNNER at 06:09 PM on May 07

Anyways tieguy, refering to your comment, have you gotten bored and moved on? Got'em. (high five). I'm sorry, but I have to ask...who are you high fiving? Yourself? If you are, it just makes you look like you are performing some dance move from "Thriller", and that's kinda sad. Game 2 - 1990 ALCS - Gets kicked out for arguing balls and strikes in the 2nd damn inning. I'm going to blame that one on a ridiculously idiotic umpire. He's 3-0 in the WS with 5 no-decisions. His career post-season ERA is 2/3 of a run higher than his regular season. To finish those stats, he's got an ERA of 2.37 in the World Series, and is 12-8 in the post-season. Also, his ERA gets better the closer he gets to the World Series (4.37 in first round, 3.87 in the second round, 2.37 in the WS). But yes, I can think of many pitchers I'd rather have than Clemens in the World Series. I mean, he is turning 45 in August...

posted by grum@work at 06:52 PM on May 07

I'm sorry, but I have to ask...who are you high fiving? Dude, it's the sound of one hand high-fiving. Wait till STUNNER discovers snap. Then you've really had it.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:15 PM on May 07

Another thing: is it a surprise to him that the season started? He had to have known this was coming. There was no delusion anywhere that he was actually going to retire this season, right? Then why isn't he pretty much ready now? Couple of warmup starts to get game ready and he should be good to go by next weekend. What, does he have to wait for the juice to kick in or something?

posted by chicobangs at 08:10 PM on May 07

My question is, why isnt he ready to go now? He needs a month to get ready?? I just dont honestly believe that he had no idea if he was coming back or not. He was playing the money game with 3 teams, knew he would be coming back and still needs a month to get ready? Im sure its great for minor league ball, but something has to be done about the Yankees, with out A-Rod, where would they be? Another loss tonite, although I would place the blame on a terrible call from a Head Umpire.

posted by dlopez916 at 09:41 PM on May 07

He needs a month to get ready?? I just dont honestly believe that he had no idea if he was coming back or not. He was playing the money game with 3 teams, knew he would be coming back and still needs a month to get ready? Everyone else gets spring training games for the month of March, so why doesn't he get a chance to warm up as well? He waits because he knows that pitcher injuries will crop up and he'll be able to maximize his value when they do occur. Of course, if Boston, New York, Texas and Houston were all healthy and in comfortable positions (Bos/NYY tied for AL East lead), then there wouldn't be any demand for him, so he'd probably retire. I can't figure out why everyone gets their panties in a bunch about him doing what he does. If a team REALLY wanted him, they would have approached him during the off-season. Obviously, that didn't happen, so now that he's in a fortuitous bargaining position, he's not supposed to take advantage of it? What, does he have to wait for the juice to kick in or something? No, according to everyone, that stuff makes you a super-pitcher almost instantly.

posted by grum@work at 11:26 PM on May 07

Since he's not headed for Boston, I'll shove the sour grapes in my mouth and point out that he's a six inning pitcher now. posted by YukonGold No sour grapes here. I've said all along I wanted nothing to do with Clemens, and I'm still amazed so many Sox fans wanted him back. Such short memories. He's the ultimate mercenary, and a player waiting each year until the season starts to decide where he fits in best and who's desparate enough and most willing to pay the most money is bad for baseball. This goes beyond the yankees and the Sox. The game is bigger than any one player, and that's what the Baseball Prospectus doesn't seem to get. It wasn't a difficult decision for Clemens for these reasons: 1. Money. You can ignore the drivel coming from Clemens about the yankees 'knowing how to win'. For the same reason dice-k came to boston, Clemens went to NY. On a bright side, he's closer than ever to Bill Simmons' dream of Clemens entering the hall with a dollar sign on his cap. 2. He wants to go into the hall of fame as a yankee. Another Championship, another year of touching the monuments in center field and he'll be that much closer. 3. Pettitte. They look like lost puppies without each other. 4. Schilling. Two egos too big to exist on one pitching staff. 5. He fits in better in NY. He played there not too long ago. He knows Jeter, Pettitte, Rivera, etc. Who does he know in Boston? That was a long time ago. I also think Sox players would have had more trouble with his 'special treatment' while the Yankee players signed off on it. 6. It's a better situation. NY is in much better shape than most believe; their demise greatly exaggerated. They have the best hitting lineup in the league, and one Clemens won't have to face now. The pitching staff is already beginning to get healthy. They had enough talent to win the East already, It's Clemens coming to be the savior when it's not even clear if he's needed. It's like joining microsoft to save the company; a bit of an illusion. And if NY falters? Well, he gave it his all, but even that wasn't enough. In boston he'd be coming to a team already 5 games in front. Nothing to be saved. They win the division with Clemens? Big deal. They were winning the division before Clemens. But if he comes to boston and they eventually lose to the yankees then he looks like a failure. There's nothing to save in boston, only to lose. You can spin it anyway you want, this is a big upgrade for the Yanks. posted by The Crafty Sousepaw Sousepaw is right. NY is the team to beat. Based on talent, NY could eventually run away with the division. They're going to score more runs. Their lineup inludes perhaps the greatest player in history, their starting pitching includes a great post season pitcher, a current yearly cy young candidate, a borderline Hall of Famer, and now perhaps the greatest pitcher in history as a what, 4th starter? Add to that the greatest closer in history, and how could NY lose? Which means all the pressure is on Torre. Nothing short of winning the WS can be seen as anything but a complete failure, and I'm sure George would agree. On a personal side, this hopefully brings to a close all the nonsense about Clemens completing the circle in Boston. Hopefully Theo won't be sending him any more DVDs trying to win him back. Maybe Sox fans will finally move on. It's been embarrassing for too many years. And if the Yankees win the World Series this year, so be it. I'm far more comfortable with 'wait until next year' than rooting for Clemens. Fans were chanting his name at Yankee Stadium yesterday and Clemens, the narcissist that he is, was eating it up. As nauseating as that was better there than Fenway. And if he goes into the Hall with a Yankee cap, all the better. Anyone but the sox (and I know he feels the same). He waits because he knows that pitcher injuries will crop up and he'll be able to maximize his value when they do occur. Of course, if Boston, New York, Texas and Houston were all healthy and in comfortable positions (Bos/NYY tied for AL East lead), then there wouldn't be any demand for him, so he'd probably retire. I can't figure out why everyone gets their panties in a bunch about him doing what he does. If a team REALLY wanted him, they would have approached him during the off-season. Obviously, that didn't happen, so now that he's in a fortuitous bargaining position, he's not supposed to take advantage of it? So you're claiming he waits until he can maximize his value, and if the need is not there, and therefore the money, he retires (which is the same reason no one approaches him in the off season, too costly). Basically you're saying he only plays for the money. I can understand someone not caring, but I find it a little bewildering that you can't see that bothering someone else.

posted by justgary at 11:43 PM on May 07

It is game 7 of the world series. List 2 other people you would rather have on the mound. posted by Debo270 No pressure will get to him and he brings the same level of play day in and day out. When the shit is on, the pressure won't bother him. posted by Debo270 How about listing 20 other people? Clemens is the greatest pitcher of our generation, probably of all time. Isn't that enough praise? I honestly don't see how anyone who has paid attention to Clemens in the post season could possibly make those statements. His stats are good, no doubt. He doesn't become an average pitcher in october. He has, as mentioned before, the habit of bailing when things go bad. He's a bit of a frontrunner. Great when things go well, not so much when things don't. But behind the simple numbers, he has an unfortunate resume of either coughing up leads his mates have given him (eight different games so far - in one of which in 2002 he blew three separate leads), or getting out of the game prematurely or controversially, or all of the above. If the Astros live to a Game Five and Clemens is healthy, they should just say “no, thanks.” Link He's not someone you want to go to war with, and if he hadn't bailed on several starts, his ERA would have suffered. The sad part is 75 years from now the Clemens legacy is going to include being a great post season pitcher because all we'll have is stats. Stats that in this case don't tell the whole story. Stats that will be just as misleading as those grum just trotted out.

posted by justgary at 11:58 PM on May 07

If a team REALLY wanted him, they would have approached him during the off-season. Obviously, that didn't happen, so now that he's in a fortuitous bargaining position, he's not supposed to take advantage of it? the yankees offered him $25.5 million in spring training. they had started talking about what it would take to get Clemens back in the bronx late last year. part of that process was asking the senior members of the team if they were OK with the "family travel" issue. apparently they were. that was the sticking point last year with the yankees. both houston and boston had ok'd it but not new york, so they were third on roger's list.

posted by goddam at 11:59 PM on May 07

dammit, ran out of time on the edit thingy. basically, Clemens was on the yankees' radar since december of last year and his camp was well aware of it.

posted by goddam at 12:13 AM on May 08

clemens will be in the hall next to barry bonds and jason gambi.He keeps getting larger. Does MLB drug test a player when he's retired?

posted by evil earl at 05:07 AM on May 08

Does MLB drug test a player when he's retired? Perhaps we should start drug testing before allowing people to post. On topic: I hoped he wouldn't come to Boston, because I like the chemistry they've got and I really thought he'd destroy the clubhouse, or at the very least, cause it some serious damage. I didn't like Clemens when he was in Boston. Loved his game, but never liked him. It's one of those "I respect you but don't like you" situations. Most of us have been in one or two of those in our lives.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:35 AM on May 08

evil earl, please give us a link backing up your hyperbole, otherwise as Gene Hackman said in "Crimson Tide", Sit down and Stfu"

posted by texasred at 05:36 AM on May 08

Since I'm not a Yankees fan, I was going to stay out of this discussion but because I know I won't be biased, I decided otherwise. I think that the Rocket can come in, give the Yankees 6-7 strong, solid innings and be that catalyst they've been missing this year. It just doesn't seem to me as if the Yankees were truly jelling together as a team just yet. Not saying that Clemens' return will improve on that but it can give the rest of the team a shot in the ass to wake up and play some better baseball considering the future Hall of Famer is on the mound for them this season. At 44, the Rocket is by far the oldest but the best pitcher on the Yankees staff and he can still do what he's being paid $4 million a month for....to win. He keeps himself in pretty good shape but just like the rest of the baseball world, he needs to get himself in game shape and his mechanics will soon follow.

posted by BornIcon at 06:41 AM on May 08

No sour grapes here. I've said all along I wanted nothing to do with Clemens, and I'm still amazed so many Sox fans wanted him back. Such short memories. I guess I'm not ready to pretend that Roger isn't better than Julian Tavarez and Jon Lester. A caller to WEEI in Boston this morning was desperately trying to make a point that Clemens is nothing more than a #5 starter in Boston. Yeah, if you count him as the fifth guy in the pitching order. The gap between what you can reasonably expect from Clemens and from the other two pitchers is a gap the size of the Grand Canyon. For that, he's a valuable upgrade. Boston loves to overvalue its pitchers and undervalue whoever New York has. The baggage that Clemens comes with (from a fan perspective) is an understandable reason to not be jumping through hoops facilitating his arrival.

posted by YukonGold at 07:49 AM on May 08

some dance move from "Thriller" I'm totally singing Thriller now and probably about 2 bars away from getting up and doing the dance. on preview: I just started doing the head-twitching move. It's on.

posted by YukonGold at 08:00 AM on May 08

Fine, I'll cue up Thriller on the iPod too. I hate being left out.

posted by jerseygirl at 09:01 AM on May 08

If the two were here, I'd buy them both beers -- David Wells and Greg Maddux call Clemens out for not travelling with the team. If I was a player, I wouldn't sign off on that horseshit either. You want to be on this team, you travel with us or you sit your ass at home in your La-Z-Boy and watch.

posted by wfrazerjr at 09:11 AM on May 08

clemens will be in the hall next to barry bonds and jason gambi.He keeps getting larger. Does MLB drug test a player when he's retired? I keep getting larger, too. And I wouldn't know a steroid if it stuck me in the ass! Hopefully they won't start testing fans who attend games for chicken wings, jalapeno poppers and beer. As for Clemens' contract allowing him not to travel with the team, he's already said that's only put in for an option when he may need to use it. He claims he plans on traveling with the team much of the time between starts. And as for him getting that contract provision in the first place, have another player win seven Cy Young Awards, then we'll cross that bridge. I seriously doubt Jeff Karstens, for example, will ever have that sort of clout. Those who do, hey, go for it. I personally have never watched a game and worried which starting pitcher was occupying which seat on the bench. As for the other players' response? Get over it. Anyone who thinks other players have any big objections to his contract arrangements based on anything else but jealousy are a bit naive.

posted by dyams at 09:33 AM on May 08

Does MLB drug test a player when he's retired? I doubt it. Clemens was named in the Grimsley affidavit, so mentioning it doesn't really seem off-topic. I think it is curious how few people are suspicious of Clemens remarkable performance after 40.

posted by bperk at 10:05 AM on May 08

Get over it. Anyone who thinks other players have any big objections to his contract arrangements based on anything else but jealousy are a bit naive. Really? A player can't just believe a team plays and stays together? It has to be jealousy? Like most sweeping statements, that's nonsense.

posted by justgary at 10:09 AM on May 08

I guess I'm not ready to pretend that Roger isn't better than Julian Tavarez and Jon Lester. Neither am I. That said, if the sox lose it because they didn't sign a 45 year old part time pitcher, they don't deserve it.

posted by justgary at 10:12 AM on May 08

Clemens is the greatest pitcher of our generation, probably of all time. Cy Young is pounding on his grave like the Pharaoh of Ahkmenrah in Night at the Museum. Now don't get me wrong, nothing would glue me to the set more than watching Schil and the Rocket get it on at Fenway or Yankee Stadium. Like watching a pay per view fight with, say, Foreman and Tyson. But the greatest of all time? Please.

posted by smithnyiu at 10:27 AM on May 08

David Wells and Greg Maddux call Clemens out for not travelling with the team. If either one of them were playing for the Yankees this year, then it would mean something but we're talking about two great pitchers that play in San Diego commenting on something that has nothing to do with them in New York. I mean, I can appreciate what they're saying from a fan's perspective but when it's all said and done, I'm sure if they had that option included in their contract, they wouldn't be saying a word. I could be wrong though. Cy Young is pounding on his grave like the Pharaoh of Ahkmenrah in Night at the Museum. That was a pretty good movie. But the greatest of all time? Please. I have to agree and say that the Rocket is a great pitcher and is one of the greatest pitchers of my generation. I never had a chance to see Cy Young play and I was too young to appreciate what the 'Nolan Ryan Express' brought to the game (even though he played for my Mets) but I was able to see guys like Clemens, Maddux, Smoltz, Glavine, Martinez, Cone and even Gooden to name a few, play in their prime. All of those guys are Hall of Famers (sans Gooden) but the Rocket is the only one that can get that type of option in his contract. Some guys may not like it but the guy can come in and still do what he's known for......winning!

posted by BornIcon at 10:49 AM on May 08

The game is bigger than any one player That really is the tricky thing about this, isn't it? I waffle on how I feel about Clemens' tactics over the last few years. On the one hand, if the option is between Clemens retiring or playing short seasons to prolong his career, and he can maintain a high level of production as he has, it is very similar to Hank Aaron becoming an AL DH to prolong his career a few years. In both cases, a few more seasons of new fans get a chance to say they saw one of the game's greatest players, and that almost makes it worth it. But is it worth having a new set of rules established for that one great player, rules by which only he gets to live and work? Tough call. That Clemens is a first-rate jerk really shouldn't play into the equation about how we feel about all this. Clemens is hard to root for? A majority of the game's greatest pitchers were jerks -- it almost comes with the territory. There aren't too many Hall of Fame pitchers who are big, cuddly Captain Kangaroo-looking guys like Gaylord Perry. Nolan Ryan? Bob Gibson? Walter Johnson? Steve Carlton? And these days, Randy Johnson? Curt Schilling? I mean, Greg Maddux? I'm a huge Mariano Rivera fan, but just looking at him gives me the willies. I shook his hand once and was seriously concerned that I would turn to stone or salt or a snake or something.* I don't want my starting pitchers to be the kinds of guys I would want as a roommate. Especially if they are power pitchers. I'm very comfortable rooting for Clemens without identifying too closely with his personality. if the sox lose it because they didn't sign a 45 year old part time pitcher, they don't deserve it. The implication being that if the Yankees win after signing a 45-year-old part-time pitcher, they won't have deserved it. I don't understand how you can possibly stand behind this comment. I'm not sure I even understand it. If your argument is that Clemens is just some 45-year-old pitcher, I think you do a Hall of Famer a disservice. Do you really think bolstering your staff mid-season with a signing like this hollows the victory? More than a mid-season trade? Or waiver pickup? Or AAA promotion? I don't get that. *Somebody needs to talk to Papelbon about that game face. Everything else about him is gold, but when that little baby face whips around with that pseudo-glare and those little pursed lips, I just want to pinch his little cheeks and laugh. I dunno, maybe that's a strategy.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 11:00 AM on May 08

But the greatest of all time? Please. Why not? Are we supposed to accept your contention at face value and not someone else's? Clemens: ERA+ of 144 over 23 seasons Cy Young: ERA+ of 138 over 22 seasons I'm willing to accept either (or someone else), but give me reasons.

posted by yerfatma at 11:00 AM on May 08

The implication being that if the Yankees win after signing a 45-year-old part-time pitcher, they won't have deserved it. I don't think so, at least that's not how I took the original comment, but it could be that Red Sox fans are thick-skinned deep thinkers. If the Sox had signed Clemens and won, it would have felt an awful lot like buying a pennant, between Dice-K, Rajah, Schilling and even Beckett, the rotation would be 80% the product of dollars and no sense. Some people were excited to have him return and win and get applauded and go into the Hall as a Red Sock. Nuts to that. Let him go in with a $ on his hat. As for Papelbon, I love the game face as-is because he looks legitimately crazy. Dave Stewart or Bob Gibson might have looked intimidating, but Papelbon looks like he might pull a knife.

posted by yerfatma at 11:05 AM on May 08

First, let me make the case for Walter Johnson as the greatest pitcher of all time. It should be the Walter Johnson Award given out every year. Many people say Young's 511 wins is the most unbreakable record in baseball. I would argue that distinction goes to his 316 losses. Check out Johnson's stats: 417 wins, 110 shutouts, 2.17 ERA, 1.06 WHIP. He did all that playing for the SENATORS, the Devil Rays of their era. He lost 65 games in which Washington was shut out, 26 of them by a 1-0 score. Put him on those Boston teams Cy Young played for, and look out. Clemens is great. But he's nowhere near the greatest ever. As for that ERA+ argument, Johnson had 146 over 21 seasons. And if I can sound off on one other thing, why do posters insist on making the most outrageous assumptions about things they no nothing about? Any player who has a problem with Clemens is just jealous? If Wells and Maddux were allowed to bail on their teammates when they aren't starting, they'd change their tune and think it was acceptable? Come on, people, if you're going to make the argument that no one can judge Clemens without walking in his shoes, then do yourself, the rest of us and logic in general a favor and don't presume to judge Greg Maddux without walking in his shoes.

posted by olelefthander at 11:12 AM on May 08

don't presume to judge Greg Maddux without walking in his shoes You might want to wipe the blood off first. And retract the blade. it would have felt an awful lot like buying a pennant The Red Sox payroll this year is estimated at around $140 million. Seriously, Clemens is the straw that breaks that genuine feeling? We Yankee fans are thin-skinned idiots, but we root for our laundry all the same -- if it's Armani or Brooks Brothers, an overpriced suit is an overpriced suit.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 11:14 AM on May 08

A look back at Clemens' first start. Worth it for the Gammons lines alone.

posted by yerfatma at 11:18 AM on May 08

I'm willing to accept either (or someone else), but give me reasons. Two reasons come to mind quickly. 1. In the same amount of time, Cy Young has 163 more wins. You can argue that he had more starts, but that would favor my argument. 2. Cy Young won 23 Cy Young awards.

posted by smithnyiu at 11:19 AM on May 08

A player can't just believe a team plays and stays together? I truly believe that's a concept that went out, for the most part, with the '70s, with the last great teams that were together for long, long periods of time (the Dodgers of Garvey, Cey, Lopes, Baker, etc. are a prime example). Many players switch teams on an on-going basis these days, many in an attempt to get the most money they can. All this great "team-building" bullshit isn't something that can happen over a couple months. These days by the time a team leaves each other in October, then come back together in March, it's one new face after another. College basketball is going through it now, with kids staying a year or so, then taking off as soon as the opportunity presents itself. What does that have to do with the "team" concept? Athletes today (and organizations) are all about "Me first." That doesn't mean they don't try hard to win on the field, and that friendships don't develop. But I just don't see the actual team thing developing over one year. That's more a case of talent exceeding length of stay.

posted by dyams at 11:23 AM on May 08

But is it worth having a new set of rules established for that one great player.... The DH was implemented in 1973 "to lessen the power of pitchers and create more offense" (stubhub.com; The Designated Hitter DH: Making Life Tough for AL Pitchers written by Paul Mrocza) but as you pointed out, Sousepaw this rule in fact helped Hank Aaron prolong his career. Granted, this rule wasn't made specifically for Hammerin' Hank but he sure took advantage of it, now didn't he?

posted by BornIcon at 11:27 AM on May 08

2. Cy Young won 23 Cy Young awards. I didn't know they called it the 'Cy Young award' while Cy Young was still playing. Impressive.

posted by BornIcon at 11:34 AM on May 08

I doubt it. Clemens was named in the Grimsley affidavit, so mentioning it doesn't really seem off-topic. I think it is curious how few people are suspicious of Clemens remarkable performance after 40. Actually, Clemens name wasn't mentioned by Grimsley, but proposed by the investigators TO Grimsley. Grimsley has come out in public (through his lawyer, naturally) to state that he did not implicate Clemens or Grimsley. The affidavit, as seen by insiders, has also been stated as having "significant errors", which some people are interpreting as an inaccurate list of "named names". Of course, that information never made it to the front page of ESPN or Sports Illustrated. As for his performance after 40, I assume everyone had the same problem with Nolan Ryan throwing heat and no-hitters after his 40th birthday? No? But why not? Clemens is great. But he's nowhere near the greatest ever. The Big Train is the greatest in my book (and as stated by other more qualified experts), but Clemens is definitely in the discussion as #2 or #3. If he keeps doing this "guest appearance" thing for 2 or 3 more seasons (and puts up he same great numbers), then the discussion about #1 becomes much more interesting... 1. In the same amount of time, Cy Young has 163 more wins. You can argue that he had more starts, but that would favor my argument. He also had 138 more losses. You can argue that he had more starts, but that would favour my argument (if I thought wins/losses was a good way to measure a pitcher's performance). Top 10 ERA+ seasons: Cy Young: 216, 194, 176, 166, 153, 152, 148, 145, 145, 140 Roger Clemens: 226, 221, 211, 197, 177, 176, 175, 169, 154 K/BB Cy Young: 2.30 Roger Clemens: 2.97 K/9IP Cy Young: 3.93 Roger Clemens: 8.60

posted by grum@work at 11:37 AM on May 08

I didn't know they called it the 'Cy Young award' while Cy Young was still playing. Impressive. That's almost like the irony of Lou Gehrig dying of "Lou Gehrig's Disease."

posted by dyams at 11:38 AM on May 08

K/9IP Cy Young: 3.93 Roger Clemens: 8.60 I would think that illustrates the era more than the quality of pitcher. Young was expected to go the distance in every game, where exactly the opposite was expected of Clemens, and Young had substantially less fear of the three-run home run in the dead ball era. The strikeout didn't serve him as well as pitching to contact and shrinking his pitch count, and he was not compelled to pitch at above 80% effort when the bases were empty -- he would have to turn it up a notch, and maybe seek a strikeout, only when he got into trouble.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 11:49 AM on May 08

I didn't know they called it the 'Cy Young award' while Cy Young was still playing. Impressive. Drats. My best material, wasted. That's almost like the irony of Lou Gehrig dying of "Lou Gehrig's Disease." At least you got it.

posted by smithnyiu at 11:54 AM on May 08

Grimsley has come out in public (through his lawyer, naturally) to state that he did not implicate Clemens or Grimsley. So he didn't implicate himself? Smart move. That's almost like the irony of Lou Gehrig dying of "Lou Gehrig's Disease." No kiddin', he did? That is so ironic.

posted by BornIcon at 11:57 AM on May 08

Grum, I'm generally in agreement with you. When I say Clemens is nowhere near the greatest, I'm saying Johnson is the greatest and Clemens is nowhere near him. Not 2 or 3 guest stints away from him either, in my humble opinion. Top 10 ERA+ seasons: Cy Young: 216, 194, 176, 166, 153, 152, 148, 145, 145, 140 Roger Clemens: 226, 221, 211, 197, 177, 176, 175, 169, 154, 145 Walter Johnson: 259, 240, 214, 214, 191, 183, 172, 164, 148, 147 K/BB Cy Young: 2.30 Roger Clemens: 2.97 Walter Johnson: 2.57 K/9IP Cy Young: 3.93 Roger Clemens: 8.60 Walter Johnson: 5.34 Shutouts: Cy Young: 76 Roger Clemens: 46 Walter Johnson: 110 WHIP: Cy Young: 1.13 Roger Clemens: 1.17 Walter Johnson: 1.06 BB/9IP Cy Young: 1.49 Roger Clemens: 2.89 Walter Johnson: 2.07 And put those Ks in historical perspective. Held MLB record for career Ks Cy Young: 12 years Roger Clemens: 0 years Walter Johnson: 55 years Led league in Ks Cy Young: 2 years Roger Clemens: 3 years Walter Johnson: 12 years And Johnson did all this on a terrible team among great teams in an era without the training regimens enjoyed by modern players, and he did it refusing to throw inside because he didn't want to hurt anyone, and he is widely acknowledged as one of the finest human beings ever to play the game. Please forgive my overenthusiastic fandom. :)

posted by olelefthander at 12:29 PM on May 08

Making a case for ol' Walter Johnson there, huh ole? Those numbers are very impressive but since Johnson played from 1907-1927, I can't say I've ever seen him play. I know that there are many athletes who are considered 'the greatest' among the rest but is that for certain eras or all-time? If the guy isn't making ESPN highlights in this current era, he's pretty much unknown. Maybe one of his games will be on ESPN classic someday.

posted by BornIcon at 01:25 PM on May 08

Shoot me now.

posted by yerfatma at 02:35 PM on May 08

If the guy isn't making ESPN highlights in this current era, he's pretty much unknown. uh... Seriously? Don't mind him olelefthander. He doesn't speak for everyone here.

posted by jerseygirl at 02:40 PM on May 08

I think I need an hour or two with Ken Burns' Baseball to recover from that. Maybe I'll watch this episode.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 02:50 PM on May 08

Why can I not stop crying?

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 03:16 PM on May 08

He doesn't speak for everyone here That was sarcasm, sorry about that. In all seriousness, there will always be discussions about who the best is, no question about that. A call into the Hall of Fame is pretty much what shows an athlete, the media and fans all around the world that this individual proved to be a cut above the rest. Now to every joke lies the truth so in a sense, if athletes that played the game (let's say in 1925) aren't being recognized for what they did in the past, who will (truly) remember them?

posted by BornIcon at 03:18 PM on May 08

Make him stop.

posted by smithnyiu at 03:54 PM on May 08

But... how?

posted by jerseygirl at 04:06 PM on May 08

Tickets to the HOF?

posted by smithnyiu at 04:19 PM on May 08

The implication being that if the Yankees win after signing a 45-year-old part-time pitcher, they won't have deserved it. Not what I meant, and not using 'deserve' in the way you took it. The sox have a good team, a highly paid team, a very talented team. If they play well they should take the division or wild card. I don't think they should have to depend on a 45 year old pitcher at this point. In other words, if they simply don't play well enough to win I'm not going to look back and blame not getting Clemens. I won't be one of the ones crying about only offering him 18 million. NY has a different situation and different needs. My comment had nothing to do with NY. As I said in the beginning, I see no difference between this and the dice-k situtation. (I disagree with Clemens being allowed to do what he's doing, but that's not NYs doing). I'm very comfortable rooting for Clemens without identifying too closely with his personality. I have no problem with others rooting for him, though some in the past have had a problem with me rooting against him. There are some fans that only care about the score, statistics, championships. That's fine. I admit that maybe I'm naive about it all, or a bit of a romantic, but I want to like the players on my team. I take the opposite view of dyams. If I didn't, I'd be watching high school ball instead. Maybe that comes from getting older, or playing the game for so long. Don't get me wrong, I want them to win, but rooting for players I don't respect is no fun for me. If I did, I'd just check out the box score instead of spending 3 hours a night with them. I don't want to turn this into a 'why I hate clemens thread', I'll save that for his 6th and last retirement when we hear what a great post season pitcher he was. But I feel he represents just about everything that's wrong with baseball today and, for the most part, has not been called on it. I make no apology for that. The fact that one can point to player X as an asshole as well doesn't sway my position in the least, nor should it. When one looks at his entire career, I'm very comfortable rooting against him, and baseball will be better without him. The game is beautiful enough without 7th inning 'look at me' speeches.

posted by justgary at 04:43 PM on May 08

ERA Johnson: 2.17 Clemens: 3.10 Batting average Johnson: .235 Clemens: .169 Home runs Johnson: 24 Clemens: 0 Strikeouts Johnson: 3,509 Clemens: 4,604 Wins Johnson: 417 Clemens: 348

posted by kirkaracha at 05:28 PM on May 08

I think I've said something like the following in other threads about other athletes, but here goes: "Love him or hate him, you still have to admit that Roger Clemens has had one hell of a career." That being out of the way, how much will he give NY this season? Is his record with Houston misleading because of the weakness of their division? Will the deeper lineups and the presence of the DH in the American League cause Clemens to be forced into earlier exits from games? Will his age lead to a higher probability of injury, despite his legendary conditioning routines? All these are legitimate questions; the relative merits of Roger's career is not really debatable. I last visited this thread when it was 14 comments long. While I had the dubious pleasure of suffering through a day on Delta Airlines, it grew to 110. My conclusion after wading through the entire thread is that there is no way that Red Sox fans and Yankee fans can engage in rational, dispassionate discussion. Isn't that the way it's supposed to be? Bring on the rest of the season!

posted by Howard_T at 06:08 PM on May 08

I think I've said something like the following in other threads about other athletes, but here goes: "Love him or hate him, you still have to admit that Roger Clemens has had one hell of a career." Yeah, but Howard, how can we miss him if he won't leave?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 06:58 PM on May 08

My conclusion after wading through the entire thread is that there is no way that Red Sox fans and Yankee fans can engage in rational, dispassionate discussion. That is so ridiculous, if you were here I would punch you in the head. ....ahem.... Justgary, that was a thorough, lucid, concise, eloquent and compelling defense for your position on Clemens. Well said. I am (unfortunately) not yet convinced that what Clemens represents in the game is so far from the mean that he deserves to be called out in this era (when this part-time notion becomes the norm we'll be looking at him as the Andy Messersmith of his time), and I've been forced to root for too many jerks to allow the odd one to subvert the goodness I see in my team. But I gotta say, as you continue to display your knowledge of and love for the game, I continue to respect you for it. For what that's worth. Crazy irrational Yankees fan that I am and all.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 11:20 PM on May 08

Maybe in another 75 years, people will be saying you can't argue Clemens is better than so-and-so because he played in the 1900s and barely into the 2000s. Sorry to have bored everyone to tears. Maybe next time I'll get John Cusack and Sam Waterston to narrate my comments, lil brown, to really give you the Ken Burns feel. Grum, I don't think this was a very successful posting. It has only 114 comments so far.

posted by olelefthander at 12:03 AM on May 09

Sorry to have bored everyone to tears. Maybe next time I'll get John Cusack and Sam Waterston to narrate my comments, lil brown, to really give you the Ken Burns feel. I think you are reacting to responses to BornIcon's comments, OLH, not yours. I, for one, embrace any and all examinations of Walter Johnson or Cy Young in a modern context. You haven't bored me for a second. For further discussion, the following is taken from "The Life That Ruth Built: A Biography" by Marshall Smelsner: "Ruth and Johnson pitched against each other nine times in the four seasons 1915-1919. Four of the games were in Boston. Ruth won six and Johnson three....Ruth won three of these games by the score of 1-0...In these near-perfect games the pitching statistics of Ruth and Johnson were as close as the scores. The three games had a total of thirty-one innings. In hits it was Ruth thirteen, Johnson fifteen; in walks, Ruth five, Johnson eight; in strikeouts, Ruth eleven, Johnson eighteen. The May 7, 1917, 1-0 game at Washington had a heightened interest because it was part of a Ruth winning streak. RUTH WINS SIXTH IN ROW Ruth Outpitches Johnson and Red Sox Beat Senators 1-0 That was a classic ballgame. Johnson gave up four hits. Ruth two. Each walked a batter. Johnson had seven strikeouts, Ruth three. And Ruth drove in the only run with a sacrifice fly in the eighth." I'm not suggesting Ruth was better than Johnson -- the lineup Johnson faced was far superior to the lineup Ruth faced. But Ruth belongs in the discussion.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 01:29 AM on May 09

Johnson also once won five games in nine days, including three shutouts of the Yankees. This could soon divolve into a Chuck Norrisesque situation. "Walter Johnson's tears could cure cancer."

posted by olelefthander at 01:47 AM on May 09

Walter Johnson once leaped in front of a Carl Mays fastball and grabbed it before it beaned its intended target. Ray Chapman's head exploded out of sheer amazement.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 01:56 AM on May 09

Walter Johnson once picked up a dead bird, stroked its head and whispered softly to it, and it flew away.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:31 AM on May 09

Is that a metaphor? I'm a little turned on by that.

posted by yerfatma at 06:12 AM on May 09

oh my goodness gracious!!!

posted by jerseygirl at 06:58 AM on May 09

That sounds very much like a WWE sound clip.

posted by qbert72 at 07:36 AM on May 09

I'm going to go rape myself.

posted by TelamarketersBeware at 08:47 AM on May 09

You're like... 14, right? Is rape your word of the day?

posted by jerseygirl at 08:59 AM on May 09

Yeah, that word doesn't need to be used here....even if you're trying to be humorous. Is rape your word of the day? Could be for him but I just saw mines and it's: expedite

posted by BornIcon at 09:11 AM on May 09

In the face of jaw-droppingly bizarre melodrama, radio broadcasters just cannot say what they really want to say on the air. Waldman was trying to convey the drama to a radio audience. Given the din in the background, the anticipation that has surrounded Clemens' return, the likely importance of this event to a Yankee audience, and the fact the media outlets were apparently not prepared for the event and that this was news breaking in front of them, I really don't see why Waldman is getting so much grief. I wasn't listening live, but from the clip and article it sounds like she didn't just go on and on about the event ad nauseum (as many broadcasters would). I guess I'm not really sure what a radio broadcast of that event is supposed to sound like.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 09:27 AM on May 09

I guess I'm not really sure what a radio broadcast of that event is supposed to sound like. Well, not like 'Nature Boy' Ric Flair giving a pre-match interview before going out to defend his Heavyweight Championship for the 100th time against the 'American Dream' Dusty Rhodes like it's 1986. Woooooooo

posted by BornIcon at 09:41 AM on May 09

I really don't see why Waldman is getting so much grief. By all accounts, she's a Very Nice Person. However, I once heard her describe Rickey Henderson's swing as the "most beautiful" baseball swing she'd ever seen. I don't know if you recall the Rube Goldberg-esque brilliance of his swing, but it was never pretty.

posted by yerfatma at 10:26 AM on May 09

Hyperbole, yes. She is guilty as charged. I guess Yankeeland has numbed me to the obsequiousness it consistently shows itself. Still, I'm pretty sure there's a whole class on sustained hyperbole at the Connecticut School for Broadcasting.

posted by The Crafty Sousepaw at 10:44 AM on May 09

That's Boswell's dreams of childhood? Wow. Baseball really does need the Yankees.

posted by dyams at 11:48 AM on May 09

But I gotta say, as you continue to display your knowledge of and love for the game, I continue to respect you for it. Well thank you. Don't know about the knowledge, but the love is there. As far as Clemens, I admit I have issues with the guy and can't afford therapy (I also doubt I'd have near the problems with him if I were a Yankee fan). That sounds very much like a WWE sound clip. It's a funny clip, but I can understand. I would have sounded the same way calling Boston's 4 consecutive home runs. Off topic: "The Yankees signed 44-year-old Roger Clemens. Not to be outdone, the Red Sox have started to thaw out Ted Williams." -- David Letterman

posted by justgary at 02:13 AM on May 10

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