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The Point After

The Point After: One Steinbrenner worth a thousand words

GS: By and large, sports columnists love mouthy sports owners. They're interesting, they're entertaining, and on a lot of days, they're so deliciously wrong that they're an easy opinion. And so, in the name of Dan Snyder and Mark Cuban, shouldn't we say hello to Hank Steinbrenner?

JR: Followed by, "Where have you been all my life?'' The guy has been in charge of the Yankees for about 12 minutes and already leads the league in insults. Do you believe in love at first slight?

GS: I believe in the politics of pointing and laughing. I believe in admiring a guy who will climb into the dunk tank without invitation. And I believe Hank is trying to wear his daddy's shoes, bless his little larynx.

JR: So would it be wrong to point out that his dad actually built the Yankees into one of the strongest franchises in all of the world, whereas Hank fell into the job because his brothers-in-law were apparently lousy husbands?

GS: Yes, that's wrong. What you don't understand is that this is kismet. Hank was meant to run the Yankees. Whether you're talking about scolding the Red Sox Nation or blistering Joe Torre or suggesting that small market teams shouldn't dare play hard against the Yankees, doesn't it sound like George's DNA is all over Junior.

JR: As DNA goes, you could do worse. I would take a pompous, arrogant, unfiltered owner who loves to win instead of a pompous, arrogant, unfiltered owner who is trying to maximize profits. (Any similarities to actual owners living or dead is purely coincidental.)

GS: Most of us would love for George Steinbrenner to own our team. He likes winning more than he likes profits, and you don't see much of that. If Hank's outbursts lead to the Yankees winning, the guy in the street will love him, too. The guy who works in the parking lot? Maybe not so much.

JR: For all of our smart-aleck comments, that has been the best thing about Hank so far. You've heard no complaints about him bullying the blue-collar folks around stadiums. His ire has been directed at the big boys, and I can appreciate that.

GS: The Rays are big boys?

JR: Yes they are, and anyone who disagrees gets a pair of spikes in the groin from Shelley Duncan.

GS: I loved her on Funny Face. Okay, here's the question. Who are the best of the outrageous owners? Who are the worst?

JR: I have a soft spot for Charlie Finley. The man won three World Series titles as an owner — and very few can say that — and was a baseball visionary. He was just a decade or two ahead of his time. As for the worst? You have your Bidwills and Culverhouses, but they weren't particularly outrageous. I'll take Peter Angelos, and a shot of Alka-Seltzer. And you?

GS: I have to name the Best Outrageous Owner Award for Steinbrenner, but if we're looking for new blood, Mark Cuban is still more entertaining than not. The worst? Marge Schott. You were a Reds fan as a boy. Ever have a poster of Marge on your wall?

JR: Don't go hating on Marge. She was the sweetest, most open-hearted, chain-smoking, racist, cheapskate I've ever known. Plus, the Reds won a World Series with her as the owner.

GS: That settles it. You did have the poster.

JR: Schottzie was in the picture, too.

The Point After: One Steinbrenner worth a thousand words 03/22/08 [Last modified: Sunday, March 23, 2008 11:02pm]

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