The Nub

Who Are Future Faces of Baseball and Dem-Team Politics

(Posted 8/2/14)

Here’s what happened when Derek Jeter first came to bat against the Rangers in Arlington last Monday night: resounding applause that prompted Michael Kay of YES to say it almost matched the loudest expression of warmth on the Captain’s season-long farewell tour. “They love him here in Texas as they did in California, sale ” said Kay, “where Angels fans in Anaheim gave him the biggest ovation so far.”

The similar MLB-wide responses wherever Derek has made a final regular-season appearance confirms what is surely a unanimous view: Jeter is the Face of Baseball. A couple of months ago, MLB-TV offered its listeners a chance to vote on whom they thought would assume Jeter’s status when he retires. The Mets’ David Wright won what many considered an embarrassingly run contest. The contest for Dem team skipper nominee in 2016 will be embarrassing to some of us if it yields Hillary Clinton by default. We believe Clinton tarnished her tenure as Secretary of State well before the Benghazi furor. In 2009, we remember, it was she who helped lead our abandonment of Manuel Zelaya, the newly liberal Skipper of Honduras, when a military-elitist junta completed a coup. Coached by Hillary, who, in turn, received signs from her friend and the junta’s P.R. rep Lanny Davis, Team Obama folded.

After first denouncing the coup and expressing support for Zelaya, our Skipper switched his stance, and accepted the sending of the lefthander to the showers. He – and Hillary – went to bat for the military and the hit-to-right elite, many of whom were profiting from the drug trade. The revised scoreboard showed drug-traffic chaos taking over and making of Honduras an international murder capital. The fallout is evident in the exodus swelling our border crisis today.   Clinton’s support for military initiatives, whether in Honduras or Iraq, confirms her hawkishness, just as her unapologetic friendship with for Wall Street tells us about her minimal concern for the 99 percent.

That right-of-center baggage will be visible in the contours of the candidate batbag she carries into the presidential race. It may complicate her hopes for a primary walkoff.

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Future Names? Miguel Cabrera, Andrew McCutcheon, Adam Wainwright are three future Face-of-Baseball possibles that come to mind.   Chances are, however, there’ll never again be the unanimity of support given The Captain for that unofficial honor.

Deadline-Deal Lessons: The insider-consensus on what the last-minute trading scramble tells us: (1) Next year will take care of itself; it’s this year that counts – Billy Beane the prime exponent. (2) Prospects are over-valued, major leaguers under-valued – Dave Dombrowski, among others. The feeling here: pre-deadline series can be decisive. Had the Rays not dropped two to the Brewers, and the Red Sox not been swept by the Jays, action on the dealing front would likely have been more subdued. No surprise that the streaking Jays and Dodgers were quiet.

Upbeat Stand-Patters: Why did Toronto make no move before the non-waiver deadline? Money problems, maybe. But the Jays are unique in surging while three of their stalwarts – Edwin Encarnacion, Brett Lawrie and Adam Lind – have been sidelined with injuries. Lawrie and Lind are playing rehab games, and should be back in as early as a week to 10 days. Encarnacion, the key member of the trio, isn’t expected until the latter part of the month.

Late Friday Scores: Cubs 8, Dodgers 2; Padres 10, Braves 1; Pirates 9, D-backs 4; KC 1, Oakland 0.

-o-

(The Nub is a team effort skippered by Dick Starkey. Comments about blog issues are welcome when addressed to the skipper at dickstar@aol.com. Previous Nubs may be found by scrolling below.)

 

 

About Richard Starkey

Dick Starkey handled media for former NY Governor Mario Cuomo, former Nassau County Executive Tom Suozzi and many other office-holders and candidates. He was sports editor of the Paris-based Herald Tribune. Perfect Pitch partner Robert Sullivan was the first to adapt focus groups to politics and has been called by Cuomo and others one of the "best" pollsters in the country.