Friday, November 27, 2009

We Will Miss You Bob. . . .

By Special Guest Blogger Juan Lopez

Everybody knew it was coming, that it would be any day that Bob Sheppard would announce his retirement, but we kinda refused to "look that way," for we somehow expected to listen to his famous godly voice, at least until we all instead had passed away. Even Derek felt that way by having his name announced by a Sheppard recording during every home game. I guess Sheppard has meant so much since he started being the Yankee's Public Address Announcer in 1951, that he became part of what the Yankees have meant since.

You talk about the Yankees, be it Mantle, Maris, Berra, Jackson, Donnie, Murcer, Jeter, just to name a few, and besides the name Steinbrenner, you have to also mention his name. You can't have one without the other.Bob Sheppard is an old man these days, ill, but you can bet that if he could make a run at it once more, he would not hesitate. He simply physically, cannot do it. I bet that he would have given anything to have announced that last game last year at the Cathedral, and the Opening Day one at the Stadium this year. His heart, his spirit, were there, even if his body wasn't. I bet that also that he must have felt a tremendous thrill, much like George did, when the Yankees won the WS this past season.

Yes, it's been quite a ride for Bob Sheppard these last 57 years. His memories must be many, and I am sure that if he had to do it all over again, he would not think twice.To Bob, I personally want to wish him better health, more years of life, a few more Championships, and I don't know if there is such a thing as a HOF for Public Address Announcers, but if not, now is the time to start one. They have the Ford Frick Award for Baseball Broadcasters for "Major contributions to Baseball."

Bob Sheppard has done more than that for almost 60 years.God bless Bob Sheppard and thanks for being the "Voice of God," as you have come to be known. I am sure that Derek understands this and in your honor, would have nobody else to announce his name at the Stadium. It just wouldn't sound the same...

Friday, November 13, 2009


What better way to overcome the post World Series mortem than by listen to Phil Coley's fourth Joe Pickering Jr. collaboration Baseball Songs, Sports Heroes 3.

That's right he's back and brings his magical lyrics to your CD player or MP3 device. And in this edition once again he takes no prisoners. No team nor sport is safe from the wit and wisdom of Pickering Junior. Of course like all other volumes the Yankees are his biggest target.

He takes shot at the Yankees in "The Yankees aren't The Yankees Any More". Not sure they are but after the World Series victory I will take them. As a matter of fact he uses the Yankees as a measuring stick in many of his compositions. But the Yankees aren't the only target on the CD. Joe Pickering Jr. ake a shot at our cross town neighbors the Mets in the Frankie the Sportsguy inspired "My Father Cursed Me( He Made Me A Mets Fan)". It is clearly the jewel on the album.

He also goes on to explore the baseball lore of the Indians, Dodgers, his beloved Red Sox, Cubbies, the dethroned AL champion Tampa Bay Rays and more. It is done in his usual, witty, laughable style.

Danny Mack brings a breathe of fresh air to the stylings of Phil Coley to a point where I was ready to stand up and applaud. If I had to critical I would just say that the liner notes are much too small for my 53 year old eyes. The good news is they should be on website by the time you read this. I may sound like a cliche but it is just in time for the Holidays and guess what Joe included not one but two Christmas songs on the CD, although our President may have preferred that the last cut be called Happy Holidays used in the title "President Obama Merry Christmas to You". Intentional, you be the judge.

Go out and buy it for the baseball fans on your Holiday List.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Jeter and Tex Bring Home The Gold

Tuesday, two Yankees were lauded for their individual defensive achievements. Shortstop Derek Jeter and first baseman Mark Teixeira were named to the Rawlings American League Gold Glove team, taking home the awards for the fourth and third times in their Major League careers, respectively.

Jeter's Gold Glove is the first since the last of his three consecutive berths in 2006 and represents no small accomplishment for the 35-year-old, who rededicated himself to defensive improvement after turning a cold shoulder to some criticism in recent years.

Teixeira's first Gold Glove since 2006 was accredited to him for an aspect of his game that proved every bit as vital to the Yankees' drive to a World Series title as his AL-leading 39 home runs and 122 RBIs. Making only four errors in 1,275 chances, Teixeira also saved numerous errors by other infielders with his wide-ranging scoops of errant throws. Adding Teixeira's Gold Glove defense to the mix created a ripple effect that helped Jeter as well as second baseman Robinson Cano and third baseman Alex Rodriguez.