|The art director for this poster is clearly not a less-is-more propenent
Just as most of us suspected, it looks like Matsui will continue his tenure in the Bronx. Though it’s still in the “rumor” phase, I can’t see any reason that the Yankee Gods would have to justify letting him get away. He finished eighth in the AL this year in both batting average (.305) and RBIs (116), and has made steady improvements in his three years as a Yankee. His batting average has improved, and he committed just three errors throughout the 2005 season despite moving around in the outfield a bit (Tony Wommack, anyone?). While his numbers certainly speak for themselves, Matsui also offers something that Jeter is famous for: those fabulous intangibles. There are no stats - - yet - - to account for the value of a player’s personality, charisma, and charm, but their importance is unmistakable. All one needs to do to see evidence of a player’s intangibles is look around the stadium during a game, home or away. How many people do you see walking around with Matsui emblazoned across the back of a jersey (although, as I mentioned previously, I hate seeing NYY jersey’s with names on the back)? And don’t forget the huge mass of Japanese fans that turn out in droves with their signs and jerseys to support Godzilla. Yankees fans have embraced Matsui from day one, and it would be a huge mistake for Steinbrenner to let another team have access to the fans his talent and personality will continue to reel in. Though it technically is still a rumor, I am all but done hoping and have switched to being certain that Matsui is here to stay.