CC the Leader

Kepner notes that Sabathia is becoming a leader. After noting that his slide step from the stretch helped Posada throw a couple of guys out, he cites other examples:

The Yankees lavished a $161 million contract on Sabathia to give their rotation an ace. As a bonus, they gained a team leader.

Sabathia has taken teammates to three Orlando Magic games, gone fishing with Brian Bruney and Nick Swisher, and taken the Toy Story Mania! ride at Disney World with Joba Chamberlain.

“I don’t know if I’m a leader,” Sabathia said. “I like to hang out with my teammates. I like to talk to my teammates, get to know them. It’s just my personality. Going to Magic games and going out to eat, doing different things, it’s just something I felt like guys on the same team should always do.”

I can’t help but read Sabathia’s tone as one of amused confusion. As if he’s found himself surrounded by a horde of Gotham reporters demanding to know the secrets of leadership, and the things they cite are the sorts of things folks in Cleveland and Minnesota like to do with one another as a matter of unnoticed course. On the Yankees, however, it’s a sign of leadership.

Which is kind of fun and quaint until the first time Sabathia wakes up in a bad mood and decides that he doesn’t want to play with others one afternoon and the next morning the stories are all about how Sabathia’s leadership is in question or something.

Remember CC: It’s New York. Which, from a baseball perspective, might as well be another planet.

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  1. YankeesfanLen said...

    Now, Craig, give us New York readers some credit for discretion, which you may already be doing by quoting Tyler instead of the guys from the P**t. At least some of us try to read through the smokescreen, and they have the notion that here there will be some…errrr….sensationalism to keep the crowd amused.
    Maybe Yankees hooker of the week (ceneterfold, special section) Leave A-Rod alone, he’s getting ready for his close up, Mr. DeMille.

  2. The Common Man said...

    That’s hilarious.  I imagine befuddled looks when CC asks if anyone wants to hang out after workouts, with Johnny Damon saying “Well, I’ll try anything once,” and Scott Brosius shaking his head in a corner moaning, “That’s not the way we did it in MY day.”

  3. lar said...

    I wanted to add something here, Craig, but I think you covered it all. It does seem pretty silly that the press goes ga-ga over a couple of guys going to the basketball game together or one guy buying lunch for the others. They just did it with Jeter and Team USA, and they did it during the NBA Finals last year with Kobe. It’s just silly and simpleminded journalism (and I’m a Lakers/Kobe fan too). I can’t blame the guys too much, though. I’m sure it’s just a product of “dead-air”. When you have time to kill before the actual, you know, games are played, you’ve got to write something.

  4. APBA Guy said...

    This is another of those stories that has me saying “I can’t wait for the regular season to start.”

    Still, I’m trying to imagine CC and Joba fitting into the little boats of “It’s a Small World”, then getting stuck in the middle of the ride because they are so big the apparatus breaks down, and hearing that song over and over until…

    Too many “Twilight Zone” reruns this weekend, I guess. I can’t wait for the regular season to start.

  5. Marc said...

    I would pay a lot of money to see CC and Joba sitting together in the tea cups, or at the top of the Ferris Wheel.  Who’s with me?

  6. Ron said...

    After 20 plus years in the Army, I can tell you leadership is defined as this:

    getting a group of wildy different personalities to do what you want them to do at precisely the moment they least want to do it.

    Spring training is the ride to the induction center, where everyone gets to know each other and swap stories.

    A Yankee pennant race in September is the Battle of the Bulge, and every decision is life-or-death.

    Leadership in April is a formality. Leadership in September/October is where it counts. And it’s not a ride at Disney World.

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