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Battling Bobby Valentine Will Be No Bed of Roses for Yankees: A Fan’s View
If you're a New York Yankees fan, then on Tuesday afternoon you were yelling at your TV or radio, and looking forward to the first time this season the Yankees (hopefully) stick it to the Boston Red Sox.
Only Bobby Valentine could bring out that emotion, though he has yet to manage a single game this season, by already playing to the Red Sox's passionate fan base. What better way to stir things up than to take shots at the Yankees' biggest stars?
When asked about Jason Varitek's retirement, Valentine offered this beaut:
"He's a man's man", Valentine said of Varitek. "He was a big hitter when needed. He was a leader of the pitching staff. He was able to beat up Alex. All that stuff is good stuff. He was exactly what he was supposed to be."
Valentine was mostly right, but "beat up Alex" was laughable. In a gutless display, Varitek left his mask on and shoved A-Rod in the face with his glove during their 2004 tete-a-tete.
In his own version of Super Tuesday, Valentine also took a shot at Derek Jeter's famed "flip play" that saved the 2001 AL pennant. Jeter raced across the infield to grab Shane Spencer's errant relay throw and made a back hand flip to Jorge Posada, who in turn tagged out Oakland's Jeremy Giambi.
"We'll never practice that," Valentine said. "And I think (Jeter) was out of position and I think the ball gets (Giambi) out if he doesn't touch it, personally."
"That was amazing that he was there," Valentine added. "Then it was more amazing to say they practiced it. I don't believe it."
Jeter and teammates have repeatedly said the play was practiced during spring training. But even if the play was never practiced, Valentine made himself look foolish by knocking one of the greatest plays in baseball history, not to mention Jeter's hustle, game smarts, and desire to win.
The season isn't even underway and the "Mouth that Roared" is in mid-season form. You can bet there will be plenty more where that came from.
Source: Hartford Courant, February 28, 2012
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