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Bomber Links: Jeter, Lee, and Lots of Quotes

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I'm so washed up and tired that I just keeping on passing Hall of Famers on the all time hits list.
I'm so washed up and tired that I just keeping on passing Hall of Famers on the all time hits list.

Mood Music - Somebody to Love by Queen

Derek Jeter is good at getting hits.  And, if you're not tired of milestones, there are now only 37 players with more hits than Jeter as he passed Mel Ott with his 2,877th base knock.  The buildup to 3,000 will be covered extremely thoroughly, so prepare yourself for Jeter's climb through the record books.

Tim Cowlishaw (who I like and respect a lot) wonders about the implication of games like Wednesday night's on the future of Cliff Lee:

As he worked through the fifth, the sixth and finally the seventh when he was spent, Lee looked like he was melting in the Arlington heat. The temperature was still in the mid-to-high 90s when he made his uncustomary exit, having thrown 106 pitches to get through 6 1/3 innings.

Regardless of what happens the rest of this season, is Lee going to think back to nights like Wednesday, the sheer misery of pitching in the Texas oven that is the Ballpark in Arlington, when he considers his free-agency options?

Lee dismissed such ideas after the game:

"That's part of playing in Texas: You've got to figure out how to deal with the heat," Lee said after the game. "It was definitely a hot one, but it was hot for both sides. That's an excuse. I'm not going to sit here and make excuses. It was a even playing field and both teams had to deal with it. You can't change the weather. You can't change the environment. It is what it is and you have to deal with it."

I have been against the Yankees spending big money or dealing big prospects for Cliff Lee from the start, but I don't think the deciding factor for Lee staying with the Rangers has anything to do with the heat or a game in August.  If the Rangers stabilize their ownership situation to the point where they can give Lee a top contract, and he feels like he can win in Texas, he'll be tempted to stay.  If not, he won't.

Mark Feinsand talks about the value of having Marcus Thames as a bench player.  I appreciated the following quote:

"I know I don’t get to play that much, but when I do, I take pride in it," Thames said. "I’m not going to put the pressure on myself and try to act like I’m Tex. I’m just going to be Marcus."

It's a good mentality to have and also some terrificly unnecessary "refer to myself in the third person" talk (looking at you, Ricky).  I have been pleasantly surprised with Thames' contributions so far this year, and when he is used properly, can be a real weapon off of the bench.

Gritty Gutty Brett Gardner has been slumping as of late and has even looked a little gun shy on the base paths.  RAB took a look at the infamous "non steal" the other night, and I picked up an interesting quote from the Gritty one in their article:

"Early in the season I was getting on base a lot and running a lot, and my legs just got a little tired," he said. "I need to start running more. I wish I had been running more recently in the last several weeks, but I will. When we need me to try to get into scoring position, I’ll try to…it’s just a matter of trying to be smart."

Normally, I think risking giving away outs on the bases and running yourself out of an inning is a terrible strategy, especially with the depth of the Yankees lineup.  But when you have someone with the speed and ability of Brett Gardner, it is frustrating to watch him be as conservative as he seems to be.  Gardner has been a huge contributor and a weapon so far this year (and if Derek Jeter wasn't Derek Jeter, he'd probably be batting lead off), so hopefully he can turn the corner and get back into high gear.