Steinbrenners Rob Reggie To Allay A-Rod

These are not your father’s Steinbrenners. For that matter, do they appear to be their father’s Steinbrenners.

In four days it will have been two years since George Steinbrenner died, and in that time his sons Hank and Hal have run their inheritance like a private vehicle for the only thing they seemed to have inherited from him: knee-jerk petulance. Their Dad grew out of its most virulent form by the time he was 60. The sons don’t seem to be moving that quickly.

Christian Red of The New York Daily News reports this afternoon that the Yankees have told their Hall of Famer and Special Advisor Reggie Jackson to “stay away” from the team, from Yankee Stadium, and from other club-related activities after his inarguable comment to Sports Illustrated that Alex Rodriguez’s admission of past steroid use “does cloud some of his records.”

It’s about the mildest form of the truth: that when combined with Rodriguez’s tone-deaf personal conduct at every stage of his career and his track record of getting smaller as the stage gets bigger, his admission of PED use – at minimum while with Texas – might be enough to give the voters the excuse they almost to a man dream of, of denying him a spot in Cooperstown.

Reggie Jackson, who said none of that and referred only to the aforementioned “cloud” and some “real questions about his numbers,” has now been banished, till further notice:

…according to two sources familiar with the team.

“Reggie is under punishment,” said one of the sources. “He’s upset.”

The comments were published at an inopportune time, when the Yankees were in Boston for a pivotal four-game series against the rival Red Sox. The punishment is not an outright ban, one of the sources said, but the Bombers felt that Jackson took a shot at A-Rod that was below the belt when he said that Rodriguez’s admitted performance-enhancing drug use “does cloud” A-Rod’s records.

“The team doesn’t need any negative publicity or aggravation, especially playing in a big market like Boston, and at Fenway,” one of the sources said. “A-Rod doesn’t need the aggravation.”

The name Steinbrenner appears nowhere in the piece. Nor does it show up in Marc Carig’s summary in The Newark Star-Ledger which adds the term “in effect suspended” and  just a dollop of context:

…club officials deemed the outspoken slugger as too “high maintenance.”

Of course the absence of a Steinbrennerian reference simply serves as circumstantial evidence that it originates from one of them (the bet is Hal – Hank had the presence of mind to step slowly away when he sensed he was slightly overmatched trying to do his father’s job). The next best reason for conclusion-jumping here is reached by asking yourself who else would’ve had the power to ban the Yanks’ last, best, living connection to the days George Steinbrenner resurrected the moribund franchise in the late ’70s. You think General Manager Brian Cashman did this? The gnomish Chief Operating Officer Lonn Trost?

Of course it could’ve been Trost’s idea. The latter source quote noted above (“The team doesn’t need any negative publicity or aggravation…”) is just dense enough to be something from him. What on earth did the Yankees just get themselves besides negative publicity and aggravation by banning Reggie Jackson just as the storm-in-a-teapot over his comments to SI had faded completely from consciousness? Who on earth would have let this wet blanket land on the eve of the All-Star Game?

But even if he did dream up this chicken spit and convince Hal Steinbrenner it was salad, Trost is not likely to have given the story to The Daily News. Just two months ago he demanded that Major League Baseball actually investigate the newspaper for another story, co-authored by the impeccable Bill Madden, that the Steinbrenners were exploring selling out.

The key to the saga is the necessity of protecting Rodriguez, even at the cost of alienating and publicly humiliating Jackson, who spent only five of his 21 major league seasons in New York but is now high on the list of retired stars identified solely with the Yankees. Mr. Red of The Daily News refers to Rodriguez as the “star third baseman” and while that’s what the Yankees desperately need people to think this year, and next year, and the year after that, and all the way until 2017 when his noose of a contract finally runs out, it is hardly still the case. This is a player, healthy enough to have appeared in 82 of the Yankees’ first 85 games, whose On Base Plus Slugging Percentage number falls below the likes of Ryan Doumit, Adam LaRoche, and Jed Lowrie – and just ahead of Chris Davis, thought to be in danger of being relegated to a platoon at first base for Baltimore.

Other than structurally I am not comparing the two cases – throwing me out and throwing Reggie Jackson out aren’t in the same universe – but we are beginning to see the outlines of a pattern of the Yankees ham-handedly overreacting in defense of their rapidly rusting former star. On Opening Day last year I finally got a clear photo from my seats of a Yankee “Coaches’ Assistant” named Brett Weber. Throughout 2010 he had given hand signals from his own seat right back of home plate to Yankee players in the on-deck circle. Nearly always, this was Rodriguez, who often looked inquiringly towards Weber for some kind of data. Gradually it had dawned on me that Weber was providing Rodriguez with details about the preceding pitch: speed, location, type.

But at the opener on a frigid March day in 2011 Weber had elevated his game. He was signaling everything except time, temperature, and traffic conditions on the Cross-Bronx Expressway.

The pictures were so inconsequential that I didn’t even blog about them here. I tweeted one shot and explained that Rodriguez was just getting confirmation of what he’d seen. What I thought but didn’t (bother to) write, was that he’s so tense that he needed confirmation from a kid in the stands with a radar gun what pitch he had just seen thrown even though he was closer to the pitch than the kid was.

But a newspaper – The Daily News, natch – published the photo two days later and I arrived at Yankee Stadium that morning as the center of attention. Major League Baseball had already instructed the Yanks to not sit Weber or anybody else in the stands. The team had already issued an explanation: namely that the Radar Gun attached to the Yankee Stadium scoreboard wasn’t working that day and so Weber was telling the players something they would have ordinarily known but for a mechanical failure.

In the middle of an ad hoc “news conference” in which I insisted that it might be bizarre for a team employee to be giving an active player a kind of hand-signal play-by-play but it didn’t strike me as cheating, who walks over but General Manager Cashman. I’ve only known him fifteen years or more and he decided to make a joke about Weber signaling for beers, and then to explain that it had all been cleared up and Weber would be back in his seat for the next day’s game, and that certainly the Yankees weren’t upset with me for tweeting the photo.

The hell they weren’t.

Since 2001 I had served as the assistant to, and “color man” for, Hall of Fame broadcaster Bob Wolff as he did the play-by-play of Old Timers’ Day over the Yankee Stadium public address system. I had occasional jokes and even less occasional insight to drop in, but mostly I was there to help out Bob, who is universally revered in my industry for his skill and moreover his generosity. Just before Old Timers’ Day 2011 Bob phoned me to say he had just been told by the Yankees that while he was invited back to “announce” the game, I wasn’t. “They said they were going in a different direction.”

I wasn’t happy about it – mostly because Bob wasn’t happy about it – but good grief, the Yankees once fired Babe Ruth, it’s their ballclub and they can do what they want. Even as I chafed at the idea that a ten-year run was over without so much as a phone call or email from them, it still never dawned on me that there was an ulterior motive.

Then The New York Post ran a story leaked to them by the Yankees that there certainly was one. The Yankees, the ‘paper’ reported, were avenging themselves against me for having tweeted the Weber/Rodriguez photo.

For the last several years, political commentator Keith Olbermann has served as an in-stadium play-by-play man for the Yankees’ Old-Timers’ Day. But the Yankees are making a change, The Post has learned. The Yankees were not happy with Olbermann posting a photo on Twitter earlier this season of a coach signaling pitches to their batters in the on-deck circle. So they decided to bounce the liberal loudmouth and will have Bob Wolff and Suzyn Waldman provide the commentary for today’s game instead.

The factual errors in the item (I had never done the play-by-play; the implication that Bob Wolff was somehow replacing me was made by somebody who knew nothing of the mechanics of Old Timers’ Day) suggested this was not Cashman cashiering me, nor the exec in charge of the event, Debbie Tymon. This was further up the chain. Even President Randy Levine insisted to me that the events were unconnected, and that I was a “candidate” to return to help Bob in 2012, and that I’d hear from the club directly next time.

Not exactly. Old Timers’ Day 2012 came and went without even a post-it stuck on my seat in the ballpark reading ‘drop dead.’

And in retrospect this petty little exercise seems like a minor note before the publicity fiasco crescendo of the move against Reggie Jackson. Note that in both cases nothing was announced, just leaked. In both cases there is executive-level action by people who don’t really know what’s going on, and who wind up exacerbating a forgotten story by resurrecting it and publicly blaming on somebody else.

And in both cases the motive is to somehow defend Alex Rodriguez.

Clearly Rodriguez needs it. After the tweeted photo story broke, an American League manager took me aside to thank me for stirring up the hornet’s nest. “They’ve been doing that for years, even in the old park,” he said. “I’ve complained and complained and complained – nothing. And it was always done for A-Rod.” The skipper added some texture to this by suggesting that the real need for a guy in the stands in a Yankee jacket giving pitch details to Rodriguez and other Yankees was that the team was notorious for flashing the wrong pitch and the wrong speed on the scoreboard (they would hardly be the only team accused of that crime and/or gamesmanship).

The sad part about all of this is that in both cases these are amazing over-reactions. The “signal” story went away within 24 hours and Brett Weber returned to his seat (although Rodriguez never again got the benefit of his technically-illegal wig-wagging). Reggie Jackson’s gentle honesty about the fact that Rodriguez is a freakin’ admitted steroid user resonated here in New York with all the impact of a snowball thrown into a pond and ruffled far fewer feathers than his comments about the Cooperstown worthiness of the late fan favorites Gary Carter and Kirby Puckett.

Under Steinbrenners: The Next Generation, the Yankees’ front office looks like a bunch of hand-wringing clerks wearing green eyeshades, rushing to defend Alex Rodriguez. You know what George would have done? Nothing. He might’ve updated his infamous derision of Dave Winfield and call Rodriguez “the new Mr. May,” but he would’ve taken the heat – not applied it to others unnecessarily.

Instead the Yankees: get another publicity nightmare; underscore the fragility of their third baseman’s ego and the insanity of his five-years-to-go contract; and pull the rug out from under one of their top ambassadors (and one of their guys who actually hit his 500+ home runs without any juice).

If Hal Steinbrenner – with or without Lonn Trost – is going to run this hallowed team like a Roller Derby franchise, that other Daily News story had better be true. The Steinbrenners need to sell the club. The Yankees need to be run by some grown-ups with skin of merely ordinary thickness.

50 Comments

On the Waterfront was based on true stories. These might be your Great Grandpaw’s Steinbrenners. Chilling! Thurber may not have liked pigeons, but at least he let them live in peace. This is “gettin’ gangsta,” as they say! And in addition to The All-Star Game tomorrow (as you mentioned)…it is Homerun Derby Night! Better check out back to see if anybody got beat up.

No speaker of truth goes unpunished.
Not easy to be the Law of Gravity in a universe of yo-yos.
Gore Vidal had it right: “The dogs bark, but the parade moves on,”

and to think i’d never imagined i could become a reggie fan. how else you gonna teach these frauds like a-rod, mcgwire and bonds a lesson? otherwise, there is no penalty for unilaterally breaking the law!

When I heard Steinbrenner got banned, I stopped my car, got out and danced a jig on the sidewalk. But I will admit that when he returned he seemed a changed man, and he soon won me over. I was glad when the Yankees won the Series one more time before he died. He’d earned it.

But his kids. Good lord. Steinbrenner, like Ned Stark, swung the axe himself, and if I didn’t like how he swung it or at whom, I could respect him for doing it himself. Hal and Hank, though, they’re Cersei and Jaime Lannister, respectively. And I guess that makes A-Rod Joffrey.

Well said, KO.

I grew up in NY in the 70’s, when George Steinbrenner, Billy Martin, Nettles, Reggie, Thurman, et al = “The Bronx Zoo” (… which is probably why I became a Mets fan). Sad to think that the current Steinbrenners are even more ridiculous, hyperbolic, and pathetic than all that.

I have been siding with Reggie on this one (though his inclusion of Gary Carter in his comments was ill-timed) but I usually take A-Rod’s side. He has handled himself well in a Yankee uniform, all things considered. He wasn’t the only one who used steroids, and at least he was a great player with or without them. But steroids will keep him out of the Hall of Fame. For a long, long time anyway. I’d like to see the HOF be divided into Dead Ball, Pre-Integration, Golden Age, Steroids Era, New Golden Age– the Cy Young Wing, the Babe Ruth Wing, the Willie Mays Wing, the Barry Bonds Wing and the (Bryce Harper?) Wing. Still, George Steinbrenner probably would have said something mean to the media in reply to Reggie and that would have been the end of it. If Trumbo is in the Hall of Fame someday and says something bad about a current Angel, will they blacklist him too? Too obscure?

Re: the final paragraph:

“If Hal Steinbrenner – with or without Lonn Trost – is going to run this hallowed team like a Roller Derby [sic] franchise…”

As a stylistic footnote some might find interesting, the trademark “Roller Derby” was voluntarily surrendered and terminated in 2009 by its previous owners, the Roller Derby Skate Corporation. Depending on a media outlet’s particular style guide, of course, it shouldn’t be necessary to capitalize the “R” and “D.”

See http://ttabvue.uspto.gov/ttabvue/v?pno=92049666&pty=CAN

Meanwhile, the stereotype of the petulant “Kansas City Bomber-style” roller derby franchise owner is dated by at least twenty or thirty years. It’s a fun analogy, but nearly all the 1200+ leagues in operation today around the globe are now run as not-for-profits or as amateur skater collectives.

At any rate, keep up the good reporting -

I had just read the Reggie article in SI today, and thought that it was very well written. I have never been a fan of the man, (those homers he hit were in the 79 Series were against the Dodgers!) but he was and is a outspoken and honest man. I think the Yankees are way overboard on this one, and what they did to you stinks on ice.

Reggie Jackson is under punishment? What is this Kindergarten?
It’s as I suspected all along. The Steinbrenner boys are not management material. And even if they were this is the sorry state of affairs with all management in this country. They don’t own up to their own level of incompetence. They would rather take their frustration with themselves out on Mr. Jackson, who by the way is a lot more knowledgeable on the subject. They are not speaking coherently, but placing false bravado over someone who deserves to be exposed for the way he acted in the past regardless of his record now. Past actions do linger.
Reggie was just making an outright statement of truth which may be a foreboding to the actual elections to the HOF. He may have had this on his mind if asked who the next candidate(s) would be for this time or in future. The Hall of Fame weekend is coming up on July 20-23 so this fact may have even been brought up in other conversations, and could have been lingering on his mind.
Rather than just down-playing the statement and ask to keep whatever A-Rod spewed about his PED usage private, they have to blast a noted hero of the game. The Steinbrenner boys could have told A-Rod to keep the noise level to a minimum, don’t mention PED usage and just play ball. But they need to coddle him and stroke his ego lest he not improve on his stats without the aid of every lackey the club has to read the pitches for him; which you cleverly pointed out innocently enough. Of course you also paid a price for it. Not fairly, I might add.
All I could say is this ball club is starting to look like a poorly run company that may have to settle for second best. I used to admire them when young but as I get a little older (not too old), it seems this club is not on the right side of anything. More infractions are being exposed and covered up.
Someone once told me that baseball is more Republican and football is more Democratic. I’m beginning to believe him.

A blog written about knee-jerk petulance by an authority on the subject. I remember the good old days when Keith would post game updates on twitter from his seat at Yankee Stadium. As a lifelong Yankee fan, now living in Texas and unable to watch most games, I always looked forward to these posts. I used to get jealous because he would sometimes go to an entire three-game series. Then there was that “frigid March day in 2011″.

Keith posted that “inconsequential” photo- even though Keith has lived in NYC long enough to know that “nothing”, as it pertains to the Yankees, is ever inconsequential when it comes to the media. I don’t believe Keith was trying to uncover some big cheating scandal involving a team that he clearly had close ties to. He was (maybe still is) a season ticket holder. There used to be photos of him with his niece and nephew at games- Keith usually decked-out in Yankees’ garb. Of course, those photos are long gone from twitter. Only a couple Yankees’ photos remain on Keith’s twitter (there’s the one with A-Rod in the bathroom). Now most of his baseball tweets and photos are about the Mets. Yes, he took his toys to someone else’s sandbox. A fair-weather fan- maybe… a sadomasochist- probably… an act of knee-jerk petulance- certainly.

The “inconsequential” photo carried by The Daily News (thanks to Keith) was of course investigated by MLB and reported on, even if for only a minute, by all the major sports new outlets and in the sports section of every city that hates the Yankees (so, like, all of them). Of course Keith lives in a bubble in NYC, so he wouldn’t know that every self-proclaimed Yankee fan in the country had to hear from every fan of every other team how the Yankees were “cheaters” and had been caught red-handed. My Red Sox and Rangers friends got mileage out of that for a month- as though they needed another reason to hate the team I love.

So while there was likely no malicious intent, Keith was rewarded for the minor sh*t-storm he created by not being invited to do commentary for the Old Timer’s Day game. Yeah, I get it- it was your thing and you’d been doing it for 10 years- blah, blah, blah. That was just over a year ago and Keith has taken every opportunity to take little pot-shots at the Yankees since then. I actually kept an eye on twitter this year to see if Keith would make a snide remark about the Yankees’ Old Timer’s Day game. Surprisingly, it came and went with no mention (unless I missed it). Not surprisingly, it did eventually come up just days later. The “Mr. October” story broke and it’s almost as though Keith had been waiting, maybe even biding his time for an opportunity to bring this subject up again and talk about how he’d been wronged by the Steinbrenner brothers. Despite all the drama, no one died and the world isn’t coming to an end.

The irony in all of this is that the blog was written by a guy (who I happen to like) with a history of knee-jerk petulance, about a family (the Steinbrenners) who have a history of knee-jerk petulance, who banned a former player (Reggie Jackson) who has a well-documented history of knee-jerk petulance, all stemming from a minor non-cheating scandal involving a player (Alex Rodriguez) who is without question the definition of petulant. Of course, this is all happening in a glass house that doesn’t have a single piece of glass left in it.

Mr. Olbermann: I just want to say that not only did you piss-off the Yankees’ front office when you posted that photo, you pissed-off and bewildered Yankee fans as well. I don’t think you meant to, but I was okay with the tiny slap on the wrist punishment they gave you. You used to post photos of yourself on the field with your arms around players. You had the “gift” of 10 years of calling Old Timer’s Day games. Press badge or not, you did what all Yankees’ fans only day dream about. So, you get no sympathy here sir. Just because whining exists in baseball, it doesn’t mean fans like it. So stop whining. Unemployment is still high, a war in Afghanistan still exists, Wall Street is still getting away with murder, and we have to choose from the lesser of two total knuckleheads this November. Really, no one gives a crap if you can’t walk around Yankee Stadium like you own the place anymore.

P.S.- As for “special advisor” Reggie Jackson… while his 1st Amendment rights are protected, any business is also within it’s rights to discipline an employee (or anyone who acts as a representative) for making public remarks about the business without prior approval from the business. That may not be the world you live in, but it’s the world the rest of us live in. Jackson never could keep his mouth shut- everyone knows that. If Billy Martin were still alive, he’d agree with me.

This isn’t easy for me to say, but I’m going to say it anyway because I happen to agree with some of Sam’s comments about your petulance, knee-jerk or otherwise.

No one can argue that you are clearly still very upset at the way the Yankees unceremoniously dumped you for posting a photo on Twitter of that “Sham-Wow” look-alike hand signal guy. At the time, I thought the Yankees were being petty and unfair since the “Sham-Wow” look-alike guy was sitting in the stands in broad daylight giving hand signals to A-Rod. Absolutely anybody could have taken a picture of him and posted it on the Internet. And then you said this year, Old Timers Day came and went and you never received so much as a ‘drop dead’ post-it. So, your upset and hurt feelings are understandable.

But what I don’t understand is why you can’t see that the way you feel about your mistreatment by the Yankees is not unlike the way some of your fans feel when you’ve blocked them on Twitter.

And I’m not talking about the sycophants and suck-butts. Those “fans” are a dime a dozen. Nor the trolls, who purposely insult you and deserve to be blocked.

I’m talking about your true fans. The ones who, despite all of the ups and downs of being a fan of Keith Olbermann (and you have to admit there have been numerous ups and downs the past couple of years that would test even the most diehard of fans), have stuck with you through thick and thin, and in some cases have been vocal advocates. The ones who, unlike the sycophants, don’t agree with you ALL the time and tweet you constructive criticism that you perceive as an insult or a slight. I happen to know that some of these fans are good people, who would never say anything to intentionally hurt or cause you distress. You have to believe that.

On Twitter today, you said something about ‘criticizing the Borg and the Borg will get you.’

Why can’t you see the irony in that?

Hear hear, “Rodriguez’s tone-deaf personal conduct at every stage of his career…” hits the nail on the head and I couldn’t have put it better myself.
Back when everyone was clamoring for sanity in free-agent signings, Scott Boras (now there’s a shady character who should be unceremoniously dumped from baseball) and his poster boy A-roid opted for cynicism. If you can get $150 million dollars, why sell your soul for an additional $100 million? Shouldn’t $150 million be ENOUGH ALREADY? Let’s not forget the stupidity of the Rangers in engineering that deal, but that’s a digression.
When Ken Griffey Jr signed with the Reds, it was at a “salary discount” in exchange for quality of life in his hometown. Even Barry Bonds, whose signing with the Giants was a record breaker in the day, was with a team he literally grew up with and loved.
Prince Fielder signed with his father’s old team, even Pujols cannot be reproached for bailing out of an organization that put him in a very awkward position at the beginning of the 2011 season.
Then there’s A-roid, the performance enhancers and the “Stop The Presses” contractual/monetary public announcements even during the course of a World Series game. He’ll never be more than an unprincipled and narcissistic two-bit mercenary in the eyes of millions, a synthesis of everything that’s been wrong with the sport for the last decade.
So Reggie, Reggie, Reggie: steer clear of that Bronx Zoo On Steroids and keep something I’ve always respected about you – your pride (in a good way).

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I’m not the same Sam as the one who wrote the long comments. I just wrote about how I usually defend A-Rod but this time I defend Reggie. Seems to me Keith is settling an old score here. What I wish is that Keith could talk about hot topics in the game of baseball– what does he think about the All-Star selection process? What are some trades that should be made (or not made)? How does he like the Mets’ chances? Are the Pirates for real? But this is his blog, not mine!

History, I adore and respect Keith. I don’t always agree with him, but I shouldn’t have to in order to be one of his greatest fans. It would be a shame if we have to fear disagreeing with him because we might be blocked on Twitter. Then, everyone loses.

All I can say is WOW! A whole new level of admiration and respect! We have truly become like the one we have cheered for all these years! Kudos! xo :)

You are dear, history! I think we all agree. But, I was amazed at someone else here, who was speaking out with an opinion that was not one that was sure to be accepted. That is what it is all about. Speaking out when you might be the only voice doing it, when you might be the only one on that side of the issue, when you might even get blocked. This takes real courage. It is the kind of tenacity we have admired for many years in Mr. Olbermann. I think people want him to realize that it is okay for someone to see something a different way. Blocking someone before even discussing why it is happening is beneath him. Yet, he does it. It is not in keeping with the spirit of acceptance that we have all fallen in love with. Hugs.

Good ol’ Keith, grinding axes…no wonder he’s been fired by EVERYBODY (it seems).

Historically, you should have been a lawyer! You really should have been KO’s lawyer! He does not have a more devoted fan in all of Gotham! xo

This is like a Keith Olbermann cult fest up in here…do you call him “Dear Leader”…stop drinking the Kool Aid y’all…KO is a world class nutjob.

Pass the Kool Aid. And the nuts, please.

History, thanks for taking the bait and being President of a very eccentric KO themed cult.

KO crazies/true believers. You people crack me up…nutjobs. I will say I do enjoy his baseball writing, though he has a Yankees bias.

This is hilarious…I guess this is KO’s fan club…the bleacher creatures…

Krazy Olbermann…

Thank you for entertaining me and taking the bait every single time….wow…guarantee you no TV station will hire KO. He’ll have to start his own channel.

OMG…you don’t write you spew…Olbermann is finished no matter what you say.

History…do you dress up as Keith Olbermann too?

KO got fired from Current for a good reason…he pissed off his superiors as per usual w/his out of control ego.

Do you have these rants pre-written to copy/paste? I thought KO was crazy but his cult followers make KO look sane.

He’s right.

Nice work, Keith… We actually think George would have agreed with Reggie and would have said it’s time “Alex stop acting like Alexandria and prove him can do it off the juice. I’m paying him to do that!”

What helps me is Gandhi’s saying about how in the end truth and love always win. I believe it. Just takes time. How right you are about the prophets…never understood or accepted in their own time or place. Hugs, History!

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I posted my comment at 8:30pm. Am I not allowed to be on my computer in the evening after work? On what planet do you connect my posting a comment on Keith’s blog with whether or not I care about the unemployment in this country??? My comment pertains directly to baseball. I mentioned the other more important things going on in the world to put Olbermann’s gripes about the Yankees in perspective.

History, you’ve always been very kind to me. Thank you. ;)

Did you not read my entire comment? I specifically said that I “didn’t” think Keith posted the photo with any malicious intent. Obviously you don’t remember the incident very well. Keith was never “banned” from Old Timer’s Day. He was not invited to do color-commentary (although you would think he had been exiled to Long Island by the way he carried on about it). He could have gone to the game. He could have enjoyed the day. He chose not to because they didn’t offer him the opportunity to sit in the booth and be heard on television- a privilege he’d been granted for 10 years. Keith tried to minimize the impact of the photos saying that the Yankees blew it out of proportion- that they overreacted. The truth is that although he never meant any harm, he created a situation that the organization ultimately had to deal with. They were damaging in that the team had to clear the incident up with MLB and the press. It was a headache no one would want to deal with. I find it really interesting that you think the Yankees mistreated Keith. Did they owe him something that I’m unaware of because he was a season ticket holder with a press badge? From the photos and postings I’ve seen in the past, Keith was treated really well by the Yankees. He appeared to me to be an insider at that ballpark. He said he’s known Brian Cashman for 15 years. Did he approach Cashman after the incident and try to explain himself? Or did he just create a mess for Cashman to clean up? All I ever read on Keith’s twitter was him deflecting and defending himself. If I had been in Keith’s shoes, I would have apologized to the people I’ve referred to as friends for unintentionally putting them in an awkward position. Call me crazy, but that would seem to be the right thing to do.

As for his criticisms, Keith was rarely ever critical of field personnel prior to this issue. He spoke about front office decisions, but rarely ever criticized players or the organization as a whole unless it was really warranted. That has changed over the last year. He now seems to revel whenever the team faulters. You and he can’t seriously expect that he would receive an invite (or even a response) about Old Timer’s Day this year after some of the remarks he’s made over the past year. I find it laughable that he’s so surprised to not hear from them. Never mind the fact that it’s now more common to see him tweeting from Citi Field. Yes, he’s a huge baseball fan- no question about that- but I don’t know where you’re from, but people in NY are judged by the baseball team they root for.

This is as much as I’ll say on the matter. If your ability to comprehend is anything like your ability to spell and form complete sentences, then everything I just wrote was a waste of my time anyway. Last thing- I do follow Keith on twitter and have been a fan for years- which is why I follow him on twitter and read his blog. I think he’s wrong on this one. That’s my opinion.

Love you history You have nailed it properly

I NEVER once said Keith was “abusing his privilege”. You keep saying that he was “unjustly” punished. An unjust punishment would have been taking away his season tickets or revoking his press pass or banning him from the stadium or flogging him at home plate during a Red Sox game. Those things would have been unjust. None of those things happened. When the Yankees allowed Keith to broadcast the Old Timer’s Day game, that was a privilege. They had no obligation to extend that privilege to him indefinitely. Not asking him to do commentary for “one” baseball game is hardly a punishment. By the way, it’s “TIMER’S”, not Timmers. It’s “signaling”, not singling. It’s “whether”, not weither. …the list goes on and on and on. Use a spell check.

I don’t think the Yankees are perfect. As a matter of fact, I think ARod “was” receiving signals. I think Keith, sitting in his box seat as a baseball fan (not a press box as a journalist) snapped a photo and “inadvertantly” opened a can of worms. I don’t blame Keith for taking the photo. I blame Keith for making such a big deal out of how the Yankees handled it. Let’s get this straight…. it’s been OVER a year and Keith is STILL complaining because he didn’t get to call ONE insignificant baseball game. I think he’s being a baby about it. I would think this if it had happened with the Red Sox. It has nothing to do with the Yankees.

Again, he’s a wealthy guy with enough money to have season tickets to “2” major league baseball teams in New York City. I don’t feel one ounce of sympathy for him that he wasn’t afforded the “privilege” of sitting in the press box during one game last year.

Yes, history, I agree. It would take a lot for me not to be his fan. Even if he robbed a bank, which he doesn’t need to at all, or slapped his own grandmaw (God forbid!) or threw me from a train, which is highly unlikely, I would still be so grateful for all the years of hope and encouragement that his commentary have given me. For a dozen years I have had to live with an injustice and his empathy has saved me…and many, many others from despair! Hopefully, my trial will be settled soon. I would like to thank him personally and might have to since I am blocked. ;)

History…you’re beyond a fan…you’re a little obsessed with Keith Olbermann. No one will hire him again, if it happens I’d be shocked.

That creative spelling of Adrian’s name is so appropriate. I must stay out of this fray as it is a drain on my nerves. I must stay calm in all situations. By the way, Mr. O has been and continues to be employed all this time. Someone is not following. Hugs.

Excellent point about the glass mug! History, you should be a detective, too!

Sounds pretty good, History! A lot of KO’s fans do DMs on Twitter to discuss what they think he should do. Personally, I am very happy that this is a sort of resting period. He is close to the age when many people retire. (No offense, Mr. O!) He has done fabulous work! No person who does such innovative work and speaks out for the disenfranchised ever goes unscathed. He is a very strong man, able to endure what many could not. Don’t worry too much about him. He will do fine. I like the idea of his “checking in” with programs like THIS WEEK or visiting Mr. Letterman, Mr. Colbert other talk shows. I also think his intuition and expertise in baseball and even other sports could be captured the same way, through appearances on Clubhouse Confidential, continuance of The Baseball Nerd, and maybe even doing some press box work with The Mets. Perhaps he has said enough on a regular basis and just needs to drop in and take it easy. Such a great guy needs to enjoy life and not have continuous stress. Let the guy on The Newsroom have it! LOL He can continue to take his great pics and maybe even publish that book that so many request…a full color coffee table type…tour of New York. There are so many avenues for him. Don’t worry either about people who are mean to him. They are eithter jealous, oppose his views, or perhaps personal failures who wish they could have even dreamed of all he has done. Who the man is comes out in his respect for his parents, his concern for “everyman” and his eye for beauty. If anyone misses this guy’s grace, he or she is blind. Take it easy, friend. xo

What helps me is what Gandhi said…”In the end TRUTH and LOVE always win.” Hugs to ya, History. And I agree that prophets are never accepted in their own time or place. :)

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