As the Yankees try to sort out their pitching lineup for the year, manager Joe Girardi announced yesterday that 22-year-old Joba Chamberlain won't be in the starting role that Hank Steinbrenner noisily projected for him.
We've always thought it was kind of nice that Hal Steinbrenner, unlike his brother, Hank, keeps his mouth shut. He doesn't talk himself into a tizzy, he doesn't battle with the press, and he doesn't even bluster when events call for it. But this week, he talked at length with GQ and explained a lot of what he has been thinking in a calm, non-obnoxious way. It's a great interview. "I'm more introverted than extroverted, for sure, but I'm definitely not a recluse," he told staff writer Nate Penn. "I can't speak for Hank, but for me, I had my hands full. I didn't have time to sit down like I am with you. I'm glad I'm doing it now." Here are some of the highlights:
• On reports that he "hates" and "avidly disdains" the media: No truth to that. That was Bill Madden [of the Daily News]. Look, first of all, I don't hate anybody. It's a useless emotion. It accomplishes nothing.
• On whether he always expected to take over the Yankees: My dad would say, "Someday this is going to be yours. We're counting on you; we're counting on Hank. I'm not going to want to do this forever." I don't know [laughs] if that was true. George was very involved, and he loved it.
• On calling his father by his first name: That's purely an office thing. I guess when you're right out of college and working in the office, you don't want to go around saying [puts on little-boy voice], "Well, Daddy said this. Daddy—" Throughout the course of fifteen years, I think it took on a life of its own here, but certainly not at home. [Steinbrenner adds the he doesn't call his dad "George" to his face. "That would be completely disrespectful."]
Anyone following the Yankees in the news for the past few months must be tired of hearing from Hank Steinbrenner about the possibility of a trade with the Minnesota Twins for young pitcher Johan Santana. It's been literally weeks and weeks of the same mantra: "I'm in charge!" "We're still open!" "Our offer was the best offer!" Even though way back on December 2, Steinbrenner set a one-week deadline for the Twins to accept his offer, it's been dragging on and on. Since today, just over a month later, papers are reporting Steinbrenner as saying actually "there were no offers on the table," we thought we'd take a little walk down memory lane of all of his bluster:
December 3, 2007: "I'm not going to be played against the Red Sox. That's not something I'll do. That's not something the Yankees should ever do, and that's I think what they're trying to do now," Yankees senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner said Sunday. "So if they want the best offer that has been offered to them, then they need to make up their minds." [Boston Globe]
At Upstairs in Soho, Leonardo DiCaprio had the back of Danny A after the club promoter got into an altercation with a patron. New York Yankee Joba Chamberlain celebrated his 22nd birthday at the Plumm by drinking Red Bull with a bunch of teammates. Tom Touchet, who was a producer at the Today show until he was forced out by Katie Couric, may have to work with her again now that he's at CBS. The Scores stripper who sold pictures of Oscar De La Hoya in drag regrets having done so for only $70,000. Derek Jeter sat near Hilary Duff at Megu Midtown. French soprano Natalie Dessay, star of the Met's Lucia di Lammermoor, understands why a lot of people think opera is boring. George Clooney, girlfriend Sarah Larson, and a group of friends dined downstairs at La Esquina.