On the surface, it's unlikely A.J. Burnett and Jorge Posada would have much common ground to cover at Yankee Stadium's gold-plated water cooler.
Burnett is one of those crazy, tattooed white dudes from the south. He almost definitely finds Larry The Cable Guy hilarious. I can say with absolute certainty he owns at least one Kid Rock CD. I'm positive he drives a truck with wheels large enough to make Gravedigger jealous.
Posada is serious and diligent and Puerto Rican. The only cable guy he knows is the chump who set up his lavish entertainment center, an entertainment center he never uses because Jorge Posada doesn't watch television. He works out and plays baseball. It's the totality of his existence.
So no, the teammates aren't necessarily friends. This is okay, of course, because they don't have to be.
Dwight Gooden and Gary Carter weren't hitting the NYC club scene together in 1986. There's no way Joe Girardi ever put in hours as David Wells' wing man. You can count on Jim Abbott's right hand the number of Hooters trips shared by Jim Leyritz and Mariano Rivera.
You don't have to be buddies. You don't even have to like each other. You just have to win.
Burnett got lit up like a Christmas tree on Saturday at Fenway Park. His brutal afternoon featured some obvious crossed-wires moments with Posada, and after the game the media seized on the moment like sharks circling a wounded seal.
Is there a rift between the two stars? Can the communication problems be fixed? Is Posada even the right man to catch Burnett?
Never mind the fact that Posada had caught 10 of Burnett's last 12 starts, a stretch that saw the right-hander go 9-3 with a 2.59 ERA. The only thing that mattered on Saturday was Burnett and his gruesome 0-3 record in Boston, all losses shared with Posada.
Burnett is an emotional player who has the unfortunate ability to let games get away from him quickly. Posada is no stranger to emotion either, having earned a reputation for a take-charge attitude that can border on bull-headed.
There have been times this season where I swear Posada was going deliver a big boot and atomic leg drop to Joba Chamberlain right there on the Yankee Stadium mound. The dude is in-tense.
So no, Burnett and Posada may not be a perfect match. But they are professionals with great resumes, and they'll make it work together because they know there's no other option. Posada is making $52 million and is going to catch. Burnett is making $82.5 million and is going to pitch.
Oh, the heartbreaking problems that face the rich and famous.
Burnett is known for watching the graphic battle flick 300 to get amped up before starts. Posada only thinks 300 in terms of batting average and the number of men who annually attempt to seduce away his incredibly hot wife, Laura.
This may seem like it would be a problem, but it really isn't. You don't have to be best friends to achieve the best results.