|Dougie is either playing "mirror" with whoever that other person is or they are picking at each other's fingernails. I'm not sure which scenario I like better.
The world of sports is chock full of self-important arrogant rich dudes, and as hilarious as folks like Rickey Henderson are ("Lou Brock was a great base stealer but today I am the greatest"), a humble athlete is far more endearing. The Yanks' own defensive first-baseman extraordinaire Dougie M. may not have the offensive prowess to really warrant any cockiness, but his utter lack of pretension has made me truly appreciate him as a fan. He makes up for what he lacks at the plate (that whole "hitting" idea....) with incredible range over at first base, and has already bailed the Yanks out of several jams by jumping up to catch wayward balls thrown by Jeet or A-Rod or slamming his bod down into the dirt to tag a player out. Dougie isn't exactly an irreplaceable or indispensable commodity in the Yankees' lineup, but he knows that and works hard to earn his keep.
He's hitting just .235 with 10 RBIs this year - which, while a far cry from the numbers put up by most of his teammates, is not necessarily despicable when teamed with this stellar defense - but with the way he acts you'd think he was a little leaguer just happy to be playing on the team with the big kids. Torre has made it clear that Mienkicantspellhisname's value to the team lies solely in his defensive talents and doesn't care much about his batting average, and his teammates love being able to toss sub-par throws in the general direction of first base and have them snagged, but any time he is interviewed Dougie is all self-deprecation and humility. When he was booed by fans after going hitless for the first several weeks of the season, Doug actually said they should have booed him sooner, and he says he works out with hitting coach Kevin Long constantly in hopes of improving his technique at the plate.
It's easy to forget that offense isn't the only part of the game, especially when the team that happens to hold a special place in your heart is going through a rough patch in the pitching department (ahem). Folks like Mientkicantspellhisname are fun to watch and heartwarming to root for, even in these lean times.
Labels: happy time, Mientkicantspellhisname