Friday, October 15, 2010

7 comments Filip Bondy Wants to Prove New York Sportswriters Are Truly Obnoxious

Once upon a time there was a sports team I hated more than anything else in this world. That was the New York Yankees. I hated them for so many reasons I can't even list, but will start a list anyway. Jim Leyritz, 1996 World Series, Jim Leyritz, annoying fans, bandwagon fans, the arrogance that surrounded the entire team, Derek Jeter for being so damn perfect, Jim Leyritz, the New York media that covered everything the team did like it was important history more important than your team's history, the certain fans that think everything the team does is important history, and Joe Torre. Torre was just too damn calm all the time like he knew the Yankees would win, it was only a matter of time. Over time I softened up a bit when the Yankees stopped winning the World Series every year and the Boston Red Sox fans and New England media decided they wanted to be the most obnoxious.

I hated them almost more than any other sports team. In fact, the best man at my wedding reception designed his entire speech around the idea of how much I hated the Yankees. The question in my life was never IF I would marry a Yankees fan, but WHEN I would marry a Yankees fan. Naturally, this has helped soften me some more. I still do find myself secretly wanting them to lose, but I can accept their winning now. Other annoying teams and fan bases have popped up giving Yankees fans/media competition for "the most obnoxious fan base/media," so that has helped as well by diverting my focus. Mostly, it is the superior attitude many Yankees media/fans have that has annoyed me in the past.

The reason I bring all this exposition up is I still refuse to accept the asshole and arrogant attitude from the New York media, even though I don't hate the franchise like I used to. I hate the idea that runs through never every New York media column that the Yankees don't win the World Series because they are the best team, but they win the World Series because that's their destiny. Being the best franchise in the history of sports and winning 27 World Championships is not enough. Not at all, their has to be major arrogance about the media that the Yankees have a right to be in the World Series every year and win it.

Filip Bondy, which may or may not be his real name, thinks the Texas Rangers-New York Yankees series is already over. I can not accept shit like this. (Thanks to Tom for pointing out the article to me)

The title when you link it is, "Sad Lil Home On the Range," because the Rangers are from Texas. Texas is a place with no running water and ignorantly stupid politicians who don't have the class and brains of a brilliant minds like Elliot Spitzer or Hillary Clinton. Texas has cattle and a backwards way of thinking, while New York has anything you would ever want, and nothing you don't want, and are the forefront of everything everywhere. Ask them, they'll tell you all about it. This article sets a new bar for condescension.

Over the past 50 years, the Yankees have won nine of their world championships, 15 American League pennants and fielded the likes of Mickey Mantle, Yogi Berra, Reggie Jackson, Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter.

The Texas Rangers franchise hasn't even been around for 50 years yet. That's a point in the Yankees favor! Mickey Mantle is going to be able to crush Cliff Lee's fastball. Yogi Berra has destroyed CJ Wilson so far this year. Give it up Rangers, Casey Stengel is going to outmaneuver your coke-head manager Ron Washington. It's like taking candy from Hideki Irabu.

The Texas Rangers, meanwhile, played .471 baseball, moved from one dumpy stadium in Washington to a worse one in Arlington,

Because how nice a team's ballpark looks has a direct correlation with how good that team is. I was wondering how early Filip Bondy was going to bring out the "our stadium is so nice and fancy" card. He shows his hand early on this one.

(Doesn't Filip Bondy sound like a name for the protagonist in a parody of the James Bond movies or something? He's just a lot of confidence for a guy who sounds like he has the name of a third-rate pornstar)

never captured a home playoff game and never reached a World Series.

See how Bondy turns around the fact the Rangers beat the Rays in three games in Tampa Bay during the ALDS? It's not impressive to Bondy the Rangers did this, but in fact it shows how weak of a team they are because they didn't win a game in the series at home. Who cares if they beat the best team (record-wise) in baseball on the road three times? In Bondy's cherry-picked statistic world this isn't impressive at all.

Bondy is so quick to want to talk about history, well the Rangers haven't won a home playoff game in their franchise history, but they have won a playoff game in New York against the Yankees in 1996. Again, I'm sure the fact Bondy wants to talk all about history and then ignore this little bit of history is just a coincidence.

It would seem irrelevant to the upcoming Rangers-Yankees series to bring up the Rangers won a playoff game in Yankee Stadium 14 years ago wouldn't it? Well, this entire article is based upon looking into the past to predict how this series will go. Yogi Berra isn't playing for the 2010 Yankees, so the fact he was on the team 50 years ago is irrelevant to what will happen in the 2010 ALCS, as are the 27 World Championships the Yankees have won. Yet, Bondy uses the Yankees history as a reason for their superiority over the Rangers...which is just mentally retarded and I don't mean to insult someone who is mentally retarded because that is not their fault, while this article is completely Filip Bondy's fault.

The Rangers have retired exactly one player's jersey (aside from Jackie Robinson's)

Clearly, this is an indication this year's Texas Rangers team can never beat the Yankees. The Rangers have never had any quality players like the Yankees have had, you know like Mark Teixeira, John Wetteland or Ruben Sierra. If the Rangers ever had quality, true Yankees like that on their team they would be winners.

and attempted to counter George M. Steinbrenner with George W. Bush in the owner's box.

Since the entire world revolves around New York sports and the Yankees are the sun upon which all New York sports get its light, the Rangers specifically set up George W. Bush to be their owner. This move had nothing to do with Bush wanting to own a piece of the team or anything like that, it was specifically designed to compete with the the Yankees...because everything is all about the Yankees.

Why did the Phillies trade for Roy Halladay this year? So they could have an elite pitcher like Whitey Ford. The Phillies also drafted and promoted Ryan Howard, not because of his talent, but because they wanted a first baseman to counter the Yankees' having Lou Gehrig 80 years ago AND they wanted a player with bigger nostrils than Babe Ruth. Two-for-one deal there.

All they've ever had was Nolan Ryan, and they've ridden him like an urban cowboy on a mechanical bull.

Get it? Nolan Ryan pitched for the Texas Rangers and everyone in Texas loves to ride a mechanical bull. The Texas Rangers are dumb cowboys because they don't have any World Series appearances.

I would have thought the ego of relying on the past to predict the future would have been taken out of New York sportswriters when the Red Sox not only broke the Yankees competitive stranglehold on them, but also made history and came back from a 3-0 deficit to win the ALCS in 2004. At that point, I thought possibly New York sportswriters would have said, "the Yankees do have a wonderful history, but this history doesn't mean very much when it comes actually playing games." I guess not.

Ryan's no-hitters aside, this ALCS represents one of sports' great historical mismatches, 40 pennants versus zero.

Under this same theory, the Phillies should just give up in the NLCS against the San Francisco Giants because they only have 7 pennants compared to the Giants' 20 pennants. Fortunately for the Phillies the outcome of the series is decided on the field, not in the history books.

The Yanks should win this series just by throwing their pinstriped uniforms onto the field and reading from a few pages of The Baseball Encyclopedia.

Bondy should be punched in the groin for saying shit like this. Comments like this are why no one likes the bullshit New York media. Much like last week's column about Lance Berkman being a "true Yankee" the media loves to make up bullshit that attempts to reflect how much more important being "a Yankee" truly is. The amount of condescension towards the other teams in baseball knows no limit when it comes to some New York sportswriters, a group that includes many members whose seem to take personal pride in what the Yankees do. They believe being a Yankee stands for more than just wearing the uniform, because pretty much any high paid free agent can do that, but it means (in their eyes) using the history of the franchise as a reason for why every other franchise is inferior to their own...and always will be.

I am not sure if I can take a guy seriously who is currently doing daily haikus on his Twitter page. I hope for his sake that is a fake-Twitter page set up by a person who is mocking him.

If only Bud Selig would agree to waive a few silly postseason rules, the Bombers might send their Scranton/Wilkes-Barre roster to Arlington for the first couple of games, make this a fair fight.

The Yankees record against the Rangers this year: 4-4
The Yankees record against the Rangers in Arlington this year: 1-4

It sounds like it would be a fair fight based on this year's statistics, which contrary to Filip Bondy's belief, are the numbers accumulated by this year's Rangers team and these same players will be on the field to face the Yankees.

(Sorry for the need to highlight the text below. Something about the transfer from one computer to another seems to have screwed up what I wrote in Firefox and I can't seem to fix it. I suck.)

"I think history can play a role if you're playing a team where the guys have played against you," Joe Girardi said. "Most of (the Rangers) don't remember the late '90s, so it's not going to affect them one way of another. It doesn't mean anything to them.

Obviously Joe Girardi isn't stupid enough to believe history plays a role in this year's ALCS.

Well, it should.

Well, it doesn't. Why the hell should history play a role between two teams that have completely different rosters from the late 90's?

There should also be a cure for white sportswriters with bushy mustaches and a jheri-curl, but there isn't.

The Rangers are the oldest of three existing major league clubs never to have won a pennant. They should be ashamed to bring their media guides to the Bronx

Yes, the Rangers should immediately go home and quit while they are ahead now because they have never won a pennant. How dare they attempt to actually play the games? If George Steinbrenner were alive he never would have let this happen.

During their odd-ball stay in our nation's capital - who can forget Richard Nixon throwing out the first baseball? - and then after moving to Turnpike Stadium in Arlington, the Senators/Rangers managed exactly one .500 season among their first 15 years, through 1976.

Which is weird because partially during this time from 1965-1975 the Yankees didn't win the pennant and 5 years over .500. Should they have just given up and turned around to go home during the 1976 playoffs because of this?

How about the span from 1982-1994? Should the Yankees have just given up when they didn't make the playoffs during that entire time? Yeah, the Rangers don't have a great history, but that doesn't mean this year's team should just give up because they haven't had success.

The magic moments since then? How about a New York Times reporter declaring with anguish her retirement from sports writing after fighting the backward postgame flow of fans and dealing with the horrors of the old rat-infested Arlington Stadium?

New York City: The only city in the country without any rats.

I do enjoy the condescension and snootiness of Filip Bondy. Should there even professional baseball in such a filthy brothel like Arlington Stadium? Nothing is ever that dirty in New York City, the mecca of all things good in the world.

Is now a good time to point out that the Texas Rangers no longer play in Arlington Stadium so this little fable is irrelevant to the 2010 ALCS. I know Bondy is having fun giving us this history lesson, but really all of his points don't matter.

How about the Rangers signing Alex Rodriguez to an unsustainable 10-year, $252 million contract in 2000, when the team still didn't have enough pitching to field a contender?

To be fair, I don't know what the hell this has to do with anything at all related to the 2010 ALCS. To be even more fair, if a team wants to spend $1 billion dollars on a player that is between that team and their fan base. I would think Filip Bondy could understand this since he writes about the Yankees for a living.

How about the Yankees signing Alex Rodriguez to an even larger $200 million deal in 2007, when the team didn't have enough pitching to make the playoffs the next year?

How about the Yankees trading for Alex Rodriguez when their pitching staff consisted of five pitchers with a 4.00+ ERA and they didn't have enough pitching to win the ALCS in 2004?

How about the Yankees trying to fix this problem by giving large contracts to Jaret Wright and Carl Pavano? I mean really, Filip Bondy wants to start talking about teams giving huge contracts to players and then it not turning into multiple World Series rings?

Or owner Tom Hicks defaulting on $525 million in loans and Major League Baseball paying the club's operating expenses from a common fund?

Or A-Rod filing as a creditor in court this year, seeking the $24.9 million still owed him by the Rangers?

These incidences are no less embarrassing than an MLB owner, George Steinbrenner, being suspended from baseball for three years for paying a gambler to get dirt on a player or Steinbrenner making illegal contributions to Richard Nixon's re-election fund. I don't know why this current Yankees or the Rangers team should be judged in any fashion for what the management of their team has done.

Yes, this has been a sad, losing franchise for half a century, but not in a charming way like the Cubbies.

The Texas Rangers aren't charming losers, therefore they can't beat the New York Yankees in the 2010 ALCS.

The Rangers are still hoping to emerge from the darkest of dark ages now under the guidance of Ryan and new owner Chuck Greenberg - who happens to be from Pittsburgh, so you can imagine how much he knows about building a decent baseball team.

George Steinbrenner was from Ohio. We all know how much that area knows about winning World Series titles.

This smart-ass comment about Greenberg aside, if Filip Bondy would do some research he could see that Chuck Greenberg helped save the Pittsburgh Penguins when they were nearly bankrupt in 1999. He's been successful at every level where he has owned a sports franchise. Granted, he doesn't come from the shipping industry, which everyone knows is the real key to success in running a baseball team since it worked for George Steinbrenner.

The Yankees' total payroll on opening day was $206.33 million, while the Rangers' was $55.25. The Rangers were sold to the Greenberg group for $570 million, despite playing now in the respectable Rangers Ballpark.

"Sure, Rangers Ballpark isn't a shithole, but the Rangers don't even have enough history in their franchise to tear down the historical ballpark where all that history would have been made and then rebuild one 100 feet away from it just to make a few bucks. That's what great franchises do. If the Rangers ever had enough franchise success maybe they will be lucky enough one day take a huge dump on the memories the fans have in one ballpark so a 'better' one can get built with more luxury boxes."

Why are they even playing this series? Why don't they just use the scores from '96, '98 and '99?

Possibly because it is the year 2010. Why don't they just use the scores from 2008? Oh yeah, they couldn't do that because neither the Rangers nor the Yankees made the playoffs that year.

(bengoodfella high-fives himself)

"I can't even think back to those years," Jorge Posada said. "It's over. I don't think it matters."

Oh, but it does to Filip Bondy. Clearly Jorge Posada is not a true Yankee because he doesn't subscribe to the Bondy's way of thinking.

It matters.

No, it doesn't.

The Yankees lead, 27 titles to none. Play ball.

The Giants lead, 5 titles to 2. Give it up Phillies, you are apparently going to lose. It's destiny.


York Yankees tickets said...

The Yankees have yet the play the first game and they’re already down 0-3. As a Mets fans, tells us again how the Mets were going to win the World Series this year. New York Yankees tickets will go high sky. 28th title just 8 wins away.

Anonymous said...

FYI: I use Firefox, and everything below "This article sets a new bar for condescension" is blank. It shows up fine in IE. Maybe something you can fix.

JWM said...

This may turn into an extended rant, I'll try to write directly.

Part of me sort of almost kinda maybe not so much feels bad for schmoe sportswriters. Their profession is to essentially weave a grand narrative out of competitions between teams composed of athletes who are so far at the tail end of human athleticism as to be virtually identical. That there are teams that are consistently bad and teams that are consistently good is kind of surprising when you think about it.

Imagine taking the roster of the best and worst team in baseball and putting each player through a battery of tests that measure their various athletic prowess. The difference between them as compared to the regular population would be a rounding error. Baseball is a study in this premise where the best teams still lose around 35-40% of the time and you know the cliches about how often the best hitters fail. The difference between a great .330 hitter and an average .270 hitter is just three more successes every 50 at bats.

So, my point is that sports outcomes are mostly a crap-shoot. The job sportswriters have is to make sense of it, to fit some kind of regression line to the data. They appear to truly believe in The Narrative. When faced with a contradiction to The Narrative, they are either baffled and move on as soon as possible or they amend The Narrative so that it still makes sense. Under no circumstances is acceptable to just say that in contests between basically evenly matched athletes, the outcome is uncertain. To acknowledge that would be to invalidate their professional existence.

In other words, this guy is paid to fit some historical narrative into an analysis of this competition. That what he says is stupid, wrong and probably crazy is beside the point.

Anonymous said...

I'm a Yankee fan. I APOLOGIZE. D:

Bengoodfella said...

Anon, I am sorry about that. I wrote part of the post at home and part at work. I use the same updated Firefox for both of them and for some reason this happens. I fixed it the best I could. It's frustrating and I am sorry.

JWM, I can see what you are saying and I appreciate the narrative portion of it. I could go without the pretense and the effect of him basically saying, "count the rings!" That's all. I do agree with you about how writers need to weave a narrative or story about what has happened and make sense of it.

It's pretty interesting stuff what you wrote. I do look at it that way and I actually don't have a problem with the narrative of a completely unsuccessful team going up against the most successful MLB team of all-time. I just don't think it is part of the narrative to be cocky like Bondy was. That's what I was being a smart-ass and saying.

Its ok you are a Yankees fan. I don't hate them as much anymore. I think they will win the series 4-2, but because they are the better team, not because of their history and how many players' numbers are retired.

HH said...

The Yankees won game 1 last night, no doubt because in the 8th inning, Darren Oliver was distracted by the 1998 Yankees batting average.

In other news, I heard the Rangers will retire all 76 numbers that are not currently on the active roster as an emergency measure.

Also, tweet of the night goes to: RT @jorgearangure: I bet George W Bush authorized a sign that read "Mission Accomplished" after the 7th inning.

Bengoodfella said...

Darren Oliver was blinded by how many numbers were retired by the Yankees. I don't get why Feliz wasn't put in the game. Is there a better time for him than when the Yankees are down 4 runs and threatening to score. Teams are afraid to think outside the box. It's like the Rangers were stuck to a script that Feliz can't pitch anything but the 9th. Ridiculous.

That's a hilarious Tweet. I like that.