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The Yankees claimed the top spot after a 12-week reign by the LA Dodgers. Compounded with a 7-game winning streak, including four straight over the Red Sox and the Dodgers losing 10 of their last 15 games, the Yankees are now ranked number one in ESPN’s MLB rankings.


Growing up in the 1980s, Donnie Baseball was one of my favorite players to watch. Seeing him in Dodger Blue still creeps me out.

After he lost his bid in 2007 to replace Joe Torre, he followed Torre to Los Angeles and has been there ever since. There is no better person for Mattingly to be with and learn the game from.

In an article in the LA Times, Bill Shaikin writes:

Torre and the Dodgers have a mutual interest in grooming hitting coach Don Mattingly as his successor. Mattingly coached for Torre in New York, then followed him to L.A. “When it’s time for Joe not to manage the club, we would like his replacement to be on our staff,” General Manager Ned Colletti said.

If the Yankees do not return to the playoffs — after spending $423 million on Mark Teixeira, CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett — we cannot imagine Manager Joe Girardi will be invited back. The Yankees selected Girardi over Mattingly as the replacement for Torre, and perhaps they’ll ask their beloved first baseman for a do-over.

Mattingly, who has no managerial experience, said Torre has promised him nothing. “I feel like he’s helping me prepare,” Mattingly said, “but I don’t know if that’s necessarily for here. I liked it in New York. I like it here. I like the game.”

The article has a quote from Mattingly, and he will not speculate where he wants to manage next, but I’m pretty sure everyone on this side of the coast knows he would love to don the pinstripes again and add to the championship years.

I’m more inclined to let Girardi finish his contract, and if by next year there isn’t significant progress, bring in Mattingly or another good manager to manage these players.

Here are some links to look at while you eat your breakfast this morning. That’s how I do my morning routine. I get up, let the dog out, get my breakfast ready, go to my office and eat while I catch up on news, blogs, and articles about the Yankees and then I shower and head to the high school where I teach.

Here are some good pieces to read this morning.

  • Ben K. at River Ave. Blues dissects this post by Tim Dierkes at MLB Trade Rumors about the worst contracts in MLB. Among the top 45, he names 3 Yankee ones — Posada, Matsui, and Igawa. Oddly, he doesn’t name A-Rod’s. I can agree with Igawa’s contract, but not Posada and Matsui. To read Dierkes’ post, click here.
  • The venerable scribe Peter Abraham did a quickie sit-down and chat with Phil Hughes about the outing he had yesterday against the U.S.A. team. Hughes pitched pretty well yesterday and featured some new whallop to his pitches. A tighter curve, a better change-up and a new cutter will make Hughes a more prized commodity. He’s only 22.
  • Jack Curry at the Times dissects A-Rod’s comment about Jose Reyes and tells readers to ignore it. It was just a comment, nothing more, Curry says.
  • Dodgers and Manny Ramirez may be close to a deal, the AP reports. Seems like the deal is for the same 2/$45 that was offered last week.
  • Plus, finally, the news everyone is talking about — A-Rod’s hip cyst. He’s going to Vail, Colorado to see a long-legged blonde in a ski suit orthopedic specialist.

By now, you should have finished your cereal. Have a good day!

This isn’t Yankees news, but nonetheless, interesting news:

Manny Ramirez has rejected the Los Angeles Dodgers’ most recent contractual offer of $45 million for 2 seasons.

Here’s the press release from the Dodgers:

LOS ANGELES — The Dodgers today received a letter from Scott Boras, the agent for Manny Ramirez, rejecting the offer that the club made yesterday. This rejection is the fourth by the agent in the club’s attempts to sign Manny.

“We love Manny Ramirez,” said Dodgers Owner Frank McCourt, “And we want Manny back, but we feel we are negotiating against ourselves. When his agent finds those ‘serious offers’ from other clubs, we’ll be happy to re-start the negotiations.

“Even with an economy that has substantially eroded since last November, out of respect for Manny and his talents, we actually improved our offer.

“So now, we start from scratch.”

I don’t know what Boras and Manny are smoking. I honestly think Boras has got it in Manny’s head that he is worth a 4 year contract. Unfortunately, since November, no one has wanted to give Manny a 4 year contract. The most he has gotten was a 3 year contract, and from the same team that he just rejected.

$45 for two years is more than what he left Boston for.

He’s being spoiled and selfish. Karma will get to him.

In an article in the-newspaper-that-shall-not-be-named, Dodgers GM Ned Colletti admits that the Los Angeles Dodgers have “some” interest in Andy Pettitte.

This poses a possible problem for the Yankees:

With Monday’s deadline for offering salary arbitration to free agents, the Yankees are faced with a dilemma now that Pettitte has expanded his choices beyond retirement or the Yankees.

If the Yankees offer Pettitte arbitration and he accepts, he is a signed player and his one-year salary would be determined through the arbitration process.

Pettitte would receive an increase from the $16 million he made last year. Due to how poorly he played last year, the Yankees have balked at signing Pettitte because he doesn’t want to take a pay cut.

Pettitte’s dance with the Dodgers could be a ploy to get the Yankees to give him the $16 million he wants.

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