About the young mick I'm a old fart Yankee fan, born and raised in Texas, who grew up on Dizzy Dean and the Yankees of Mantle and Berra and Martin and Howard and Ford and Larsen, running the show every Saturday on The Game Of The Week. We didn't have big league ball in Texas back then, so I adopted the Yankees and have followed them ever since. As a youth i loved and followed all the major sports, but now as an old fart the only sport that I follow closely is baseball. Although I pretty much missed the days of Joltin' Joe, baseball today is still played like it was back then. And what other sport can you say that about? The NBA is a joke these days -- the professional game is no different than what you see in pickup games on neighborhood blacktop courts. And just how much skill is involved with a 6' 10" player dunking a basketball? Professional football has gone 100% Hollywood. There never was much skill involved in that game, and nowadays it's nothing but hotdogging and showboating. A wide receiver catches a 10-yard pass for a first down, and you'd think he'd just won the lottery.

But baseball is totally different. There's nothing more difficult in any sport than hitting a 100 MPH fastball, or fielding a ground ball coming back at you at that same speed. And not only is there the physical aspect of the game, there's the mental aspect as well. Every time the ball is put in play, there are dozens of different scenarios that each player must be thinking about, depending on what happens the moment the ball is hit. There's absolutely nothing like that in any other sport. In just an average baseball game you will see at least a dozen plays that far surpass skillwise anything you ever see in a basketball or football game. It's no wonder that you see so little hotdogging in baseball, as it's an incredibly humiliating game. And that's what makes the game great.

As far as the Yankees go, I'm a bit different than your average Yankee fan of today, who seems to demand that a future HOFer play at every position and who starts screaming every time any player doesn't play like a future HOFer. Sure I love to see the Yankees win, but winning isn't everything for me. I love to watch the new kids coming up, particularly the ones who have the same enthusiasm for the game that I had those many years ago. Give me the likes of a Shelley Duncan or a Melky Cabrera, mixed in with some "old timers" like Jeter and Posada and Rivera, and then just be competitive. That's all I need.