Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Pitchers and catchers report, Cap'n Crunch loses his innocence

There are lessons to be learned from the first days of spring training, nuggets of information to be gleaned, processed and used to make your own life better.

For instance, I am now aware of the unspeakable evils perpetrated upon us by the salty tyrant of the breakfast table, Cap'n Crunch.

CC Sabathia reported to camp 25 pounds less of a hoss on Monday, and he attributed his svelte new figure to cutting out the Quaker Oats Company standard.

It was bittersweet revelation for me since a) I have a deep affinity for the Cap'n's treasure chest of sugary goodness and b) Sabathia's weight loss is a transparent precursor to his inevitable opt-out at the end of the season.

I won't ever be able to eat Cap'n Crunch ever again without the image of Sabathia's juicy man gut flashing through my synapses. As for the potential opt-out, it's not something a Yankee fan should get too worked up about. It's still (relatively) far down the line, and besides, there are enough problems with this year's rotation to waste time worrying about the next.

Other than that, it's been a relatively quiet first two days in camp thus far. A.J. Burnett threw 30 fastballs to Francisco Cervelli on Tuesday morning, then told the media his struggles in 2010 were all in his mind.

“Just mentally staying right,” Burnett said. “I think every time we talked last year, the good games, I was there. I was locked in. The bad games, I think mentally I wasn’t there. It’s a matter of staying on top of my game, paying attention to every pitch and doing what I did before last year, which was not letting anything bother me. Not worrying about a thing, going out there one pitch at a time until Skip takes me out. If I do that, I’ll be fine.”
If your eyeballs were rolling through the back of your head as you read that, you're not alone. I mean, he's really using the "mentally I wasn't there" excuse? This is a 33-year-old man who's been in the majors since 2001. Weak sauce, Allan James.

On the plus side, at least he can't passive aggressively blame Georgie Posada anymore. The veteran is also in camp, and he's referring to himself as the "third-string emergency catcher" now. I imagine on a pride-swallowing scale, this is akin to Kanye West labeling himself Jay-Z's third-string Courvoisier taster.

Georgie's a pro though, and he's trying to spin it positive. Just like me as I pour out a tasteless helping of Special K. Damn you, Cap'n Crunch. Damn you straight to a watery grave.

Dan Hanzus writes three columns a week on his New York Yankees site, River & Sunset. He can be reached at dhanzus@gmail.com. Follow Dan on Twitter @danhanzus.

1 comment:

The Captain said...

A.J's excuse is pretty lame, I'll give you that. But in case his I also kinda believe him.

I think working with Rothschild this season is going to help him big time. I don't think he'll be a Cy Young candidate or anything, but definitely closer to his 2009 self than 2010.