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June 6, 2003

by Larry Mahnken

The last time the Yankees played in Wrigley Field, Jesse Orosco was still just a rookie. With today's win, they're 5-0 all-time, and tomorrow Roger Clemens tries to make them 6-0, and make himself 300-154. To do it, they'll have to beat Kerry Wood, the only other man to strike out 20 men in a nine-inning game.

Today, Sammy Sosa was suspended for eight games, and as expected, he appealed that suspension. There aren't really any grounds to appeal the suspension, but he did so to avoid missing the Yankees series. He'll likely drop the appeal on Monday, and miss the Tampa Bay & Toronto series. Is it a farce, and a mockery of the appeals process? Yes. But, it's a rule that everyone can exploit, so there's no use in bitching about it now. Sosa didn't hurt the Yankees today, anyway.

The Yankees also made a trade today, accquiring "outfielder" Ruben Sierra for Marcus Thames, who last season experienced the equivalent of losing your virginity to Catherine Zeta-Jones, taking Randy Johnson out on the first pitch he ever saw in the majors. You remember Sierra--he's the guy who complained that all the Yankees care about is winning--heaven forbid! Sierra hasn't done much this year (.731 OPS) in a small sample size (147 PA), but it's pretty much what he did last season with Seattle, and he's been playing in a hitter's park. He's a switch-hitting Todd Zeile, but at least he's cheap. The trade itself isn't a bad one: Thames has probably done everything he ever will to help the Yankees, and they might catch lightning in a bottle with Sierra, but the accquisition is really a nothing. He won't really hurt them by being on the roster, but he probably won't help them, either. At least he's not making too much to release if/when they have to.

Matsui went 0 for 2 today with a couple of walks, a strikeout and a groundout to the pitcher. Not an indication that yesterday was a fluke by any means; if he can keep hitting it in the air, I think the hits, and especially the HRs, will come.

And Boston lost again, 9-3, to Milwaukee! So, the Yanks are right back where they were when interleague play began, 1½ games up. I know it's a Yankees blog, and I should be gloating whenever the Sox choke, but Grady Little really needs to be fired. The Yankees have no business being anywhere near first place.