Doing Advance Work

News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Never Trumper butt hurt: CPAC ACU: Trump cabinet most conservative, surpassing Reagan. "Now, how are Never Trumpers gonna deal with that?" Rush Limbaugh, Feb. 23, 2017. Lawmakers in Trump cabinet avg. 91.52% ACU rating, Reagan 63.43. Others: Obama 23.96, Clinton 18.62, Carter 5.31, LBJ 4.12-Washington Examiner, Bedard

"Now, how are Never Trumpers gonna deal with that? No, seriously! Trump has appointed a more serious cabinet than even Reagan, according to the American Conservative Union." Rush Limbaugh, Feb. 23, 2017 

2/9/17, "CPAC-ACU: Trump's Cabinet the most conservative, surpassing Reagan," Washington Examiner, Paul Bedard

"Donald Trump has succeeded in picking the most conservative cabinet in the modern era, and possibly ever, even besting the team put together by former President Reagan, according to a scorecard from the American Conservative Union, host of the annual CPAC convention. 

ACU Chairman Matt Schlapp told Secrets that Trump's team, made up in part with House and Senate lawmakers graded by the group over the years, has a 91.52 percent conservative rating, significantly surpassing Reagan's by 28 points.

Only the Cabinet of former President George H.W. Bush, who was Reagan's vice president and followed the Gipper into the Oval Office, came close with a 78.15 conservative rating. 

"By our ranking of the members of Congress in the Cabinet, this is the most conservative Cabinet of any Republican including Reagan," Schlapp said.

"The set up is nice," added Schlapp, currently preparing for the Feb. 22-25 annual Conservative Political Action Conference, which could be the biggest ever.

Liberals have mocked the rightward tilt of Trump's team, but conservatives are cheering it and expect it to keep the president on the course to limited government, reduced regulations, smaller taxes and a stronger military.

The ACU ratings, 0-100, are based on the average of the grades given to lawmakers in the Cabinet. Some Cabinets, like both of the Bushes, had many lawmakers. The total numbers are higher for some because longer presidencies saw Cabinet secretaries resign and be replaced. Those details are below:

Trump, five of 21 picks were in Congress, average lifetime ACU rating of 91.52 percent.

— George H.W. Bush, 10 of 30, rating of 78.15 percent.

— George W. Bush, 10 of 48, rating of 76.40 percent.

— Gerald Ford, 2 of 32, 70.5 percent.

Reagan, 7 of 46, 63.43 percent.

— Richard Nixon, 2 of 43, 58.5 percent.

— Barack Obama, 9 of 47, 23.96 percent.

— Bill Clinton, 9 of 44, 18.62 percent.

— Jimmy Carter, 4 of 30, 5.31 percent.

— Lyndon Johnson, 1 of 26, 4.12 percent.

Trump has named five lawmakers to his Cabinet. Vice President Mike Pence has a ACU lifetime rating is 99.43 for his years in the House. The others:

— Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, confirmed to be Attorney General, 94.21 percent lifetime rating.

— Rep. Ryan Zinke of Montana, for Interior, 71 lifetime rating.

— Rep. Tom Price of Georgia, for HHS, 96 lifetime rating.

— Former Sen. Dan Coats of Indiana, director National Intelligence, 89.5 lifetime rating.

— Rep. Mike Pompeo of Kansas, confirmed for CIA, 96.8 lifetime rating."


Rush Limbaugh quote from:

2/23/17, "The Opening Monologue: Poll on the Economy, Boehner, Mnuchin, Trump’s Cabinet — and More,"



Wall St. Journal op-ed by two Swedish elected officials: Mr. Trump did not exaggerate Sweden’s current problems-if anything, he understated them. Riots and social unrest are now everyday life, gang violence is booming. Dec. 2010 marked Sweden's first Islamic suicide bomber terror attack. Artists live under death threats, performances are cancelled for fear of angering Islamists. Returning ISIS members are welcomed with open arms. Jews in Malmo are refugees in their country of birth-Wall St. Journal, 2/22/17

2/22/17, "Trump Is Right: Sweden’s Embrace of Refugees Isn’t Working," Wall St. Journal, by Jimmie Åkesson and Mattias Karlsson, opinion. "Mr. Åkesson is party chairman of the Sweden Democrats. Mr. Karlsson is the party’s group leader in Parliament."

"The country has accepted 275,000 asylum-seekers, many without passports—leading to riots and crime."

"When President Trump last week raised Sweden’s problematic experience with open-door immigration, skeptics were quick to dismiss his claims. Two days later an immigrant suburb of Stockholm was racked by another riot. No one was seriously injured, though the crowd burned cars and hurled stones at police officers.

Mr. Trump did not exaggerate Sweden’s current problems. If anything, he understated them. Sweden took in about 275,000 asylum-seekers from 2014-16—more per capita than any other European country. Eighty percent of those who came in 2015 lacked passports and identification, but a majority come from Muslim nations. Islam has become Sweden’s second-largest religion. In Malmö, our third-largest city, Mohamed is the most common name for baby boys.

The effects are palpable, starting with national security. An estimated 300 Swedish citizens with immigrant backgrounds have traveled to the Middle East to fight for Islamic State. Many are now returning to Sweden and are being welcomed back with open arms by our socialist government. In December 2010 we had our first suicide attack on Swedish soil, when an Islamic terrorist tried to blow up hundreds of civilians in central Stockholm while they were shopping for Christmas presents. Thankfully the bomber killed only himself.

Riots and social unrest have become a part of everyday life. Police officers, firefighters and ambulance personnel are regularly attacked. Serious riots in 2013, involving many suburbs with large immigrant populations, lasted for almost a week. Gang violence is booming. Despite very strict firearm laws, gun violence is five times as common in Sweden, in total, as in the capital cities of our three Nordic neighbors combined.

Anti-Semitism has risen. Jews in Malmö are threatened, harassed and assaulted in the streets. Many have left the city, becoming internal refugees in their country of birth.

The number of sex crimes nearly doubled from 2014-15, according to surveys by the Swedish government body for crime statistics. One-third of Swedish women report that they no longer feel secure in their own neighborhoods, and 12% say they don’t feel safe going out alone after dark. A 1996 report from the same government body found that immigrant men were far likelier to commit rape than Swedish men. Last year our party asked the minister of justice to conduct a new report on crime and immigration, and he replied: “In light of previous studies, I do not see that a further report on recorded crime and individuals’ origins would add knowledge with the potential to improve the Swedish society.”

Our nation’s culture hasn’t been spared either. Artists accused of insulting Islam live under death threats. Dance performances and art exhibitions have been called off for fear of angering Islamists. Schools have prohibited the singing of traditional Christian hymns because they don’t want to “insult” non-Christian immigrants. Yet reports made with hidden cameras by journalists from Swedish public media show mosques teaching fundamentalist interpretations of Islam.

Sweden’s government now spends an incredible amount of money caring for newly arrived immigrants each year. The unemployment rate among immigrants is five times as high as that of native Swedes. Among some groups, such as Somalis, in places like Malmö unemployment reaches 80%.

Our party, the Sweden Democrats, wants to put the security and welfare of Swedish citizens first. We are surging in the opinion polls and seem to have a good chance of becoming the country’s largest party during the elections next year. We will not rest until we have made Sweden safe again.
For the sake of the American people, with whom we share so many strong historical and cultural ties, we can only hope that the leaders in Washington won’t make the same mistakes that our socialist and liberal politicians did
"Mr. Åkesson is party chairman of the Sweden Democrats. Mr. Karlsson is the party’s group leader in Parliament."

Feb. 20, 2017, "Burned out cars following a riot in a suburb of Stockholm, Feb. 20. Photo: Associated Press" via WSJ


Added: Six consecutive nights of rioting in Stockholm, Sweden in May 2013 sent notion of multi-cultural paradise constructed over decades by the Swedish Left up in smoke:

May 25, 2013, "Stockholm riots leave Sweden's dreams of perfect society up in smoke," UK Telegraph, Colin Freeman, Husby, Sweden: 

"Police were hardly to be seen, and when they did arrive, it was purely to protect the firefighters dealing with the car blaze rather than make arrests...."Anyone who wants to regulate immigration is immediately classified as a nationalist, which also implies a racist as well," he (Swedish academic Carlbom) said. "It is still almost impossible to debate this question."" In a central Sweden town, "25 masked youths set fire to a school on Friday night." The Swedish Left has "ruled the country for most of the post-war period." Stockholm's outskirts are now dominated by "immigrant populations, including large numbers from Somalia, Eritrea, Afghanistan and Iraq." 

May 25, 2013, "Stockholm riots leave Sweden's dreams of perfect society up in smoke," UK Telegraph, Colin Freeman, Husby, Sweden

2013 Stockholm riots


Added: Dec. 2010 Islamic terror attack in Stockholm, Sweden at Christmas market: The bomber Abdulwahab "was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to Sweden in 1992 and then to Britain in 2001."...Abdulwahab’s father, Thamer, 61, lives in a town south of Stockholm.

12/12/2010, "Sweden suicide bomber: Taimur Abdulwahab al-Abdaly was living in Britain," UK Telegraph, by

Dec. 2010, Stockholm bombing
"An Islamic suicide bomber who attacked Christmas shoppers in Sweden at the weekend is a British university graduate and was living in this country until two weeks ago." 

"Taimur Abdulwahab al-Abdaly tried to set off a car bomb packed with gas canisters in a busy shopping street in Stockholm. The car caught fire and the bomber fled the scene before blowing himself up 300yd away 15 minutes later, injuring two bystanders. 

It emerged last night that Abdulwahab, who was due to turn 29 yesterday, is a former physical therapy student at Bedfordshire University in Luton, and that his wife and three young children still live in the town.... 

Abdulmutallab had trained in Yemen, but had become increasingly radical during his time in Britain. The security services and police are concerned that British university campuses have become breeding grounds for extremism. Neighbours told The Daily Telegraph last night that they had last seen Abdulwahab...two and a half weeks ago. The couple have two young girls and a baby son. His wife, Mona, a Swedish citizen, is said to run a home beauty company....Abdulwahab used to go to Friday prayers at the Islamic Centre in Luton.

The bomber had recently advertised on a Muslim dating site for a second wife, saying he was looking for a “lady 25-30 who lives in UK for marriage”. The site,, said he was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to Sweden in 1992 and then to Britain in 2001 to study for a degree in physical therapy, marrying in 2004. 

On his Facebook page, he included a group called Yawm al-Qiyaamah, meaning Day of Judgment, that featured a montage of Tower Bridge in flames. 

Reports from Sweden said Abdulwahab was shouting in Arabic and carrying six pipebombs, one of which exploded, along with a rucksack full of nails and explosives....

One witness said the bomber had worked as a sandwich board advertiser in the Drottninggatan shopping area. 

Carl Bildt, the Swedish foreign minister, said it was “a most worrying attempt at a terrorist attack”, adding that it “failed – but could have been truly catastrophic”. Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said: “The Swedish government have indicated they believe this was a terrorist attack. We will be talking to them about the details of that attack.” 

Abdulwahab’s father, Thamer, 61, who lives in Tranås, south of Stockholm, said his son had been at the family home on Friday. 

“After he woke up Saturday morning, he took his car and drove off,” he said. “He did not say if he was going to Stockholm or elsewhere.” 

An Yemeni Islamist website, Shumukh al-Islam, published a photograph of Abdulwahab in dark glasses, saying: “It is our brother, mujahid Taymour Abdel Wahab, who carried out the martyrdom operation in Stockholm.” 

Twelve minutes before the bombing on Saturday, a Swedish news agency received a message with two sound files, one in Swedish and one in Arabic, that was also sent to the Swedish Security Police. The message criticised Swedes’ silence over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed and Swedish soldiers serving in Afghanistan. Abdulwahab said: “Now your children, your daughters and your sisters will die as our brothers, our sisters and our children are dying.” 

He also asked his family for forgiveness for misleading them about a trip to the Middle East: “I never went to the Middle East to work or to make money, I went for jihad. He asked his wife to kiss the children on his behalf. “Tell them Daddy loves them,” he added." image above from UK Telegraph


Added: Islamic terror attacks in in Europe mean loss of lucrative tourism dollars. Paris, France lost 1.5 million tourists and $1 billion in revenue in 2016 due to Islamic terror fears-AFP 

2/21/17, "Paris visitor numbers hit in 2016 after attacks," AFP, Katia Dolmadjian, Paris 

"Paris saw a drop of 1.5 million tourists in 2016 as fears linked to terror attacks scared off visitors, especially from China and Japan, figures showed Tuesday....

Added: Also in France in 2016, Islamic mass murder on the Riviera via truck with bulletproof glass. French "terror" readiness consisted of police having hand guns. At least 84 killed, hundreds more injured:

7/15/16, "Nice (France) terror truck had bullet-resistant windshield," Debka File Exclusive (now req. subscription)
"At least 84 people were killed when a huge truck drove into crowds celebrating Bastille Day in the French Riviera town of Nice on the famous Promenade des Anglais seafront Thursday night in a horrific Islamist terror attack. Hundreds more were injured."... 


Comment: Deciding not to participate in your own genocide is a brave step. You'll be attacked by enraged globalist elites who thought they'd sidelined you.

Definition of genocide:

"Generally speaking, genocide does not necessarily mean the immediate destruction of a nation....It is...rather...a coordinated plan of different actions aiming at the destruction of essential foundations of the life of national groups with the aim of annihilating the groups themselves. The objectives of such a plan would be the disintegration of the 

political and social institutions, of 
national feelings,  
religion, and the 
economic existence of national groups, 

and the destruction of personal security, liberty, health, dignity, and even the lives of the individuals belonging to such groups."... 

"The crime of genocide is defined in the "Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide."... 
"Raphael Lemkin in his masterpiece "Axis Rule in Occupied Europe" (1943) invented the term "genocide" by combining "genos" (race, people) and "cide" (to kill). Lemkin defined genocide"...from Genocide Watch


1/7/2015, "The European Civil War: Elites vs People in a Fight for Survival," Gerald Warner, Breitbart London

"Europe is in a state of war: specifically, a civil war between the self-appointed elites who have destroyed much of the continent’s freedom, culture and prosperity and the insurgent populations they have deceived and enslaved."...



Wednesday, February 22, 2017

John McCain solicited illegal contribution from Russian official to his 2008 US presidential campaign. It was illegal of him to solicit a private donation since he opted for public financing. It's also illegal to accept donations from foreign nationals-Politico, Oct. 20, 2008

Oct. 20, 2008, "McCain camp hits up Russian envoy," Politico, Ben Smith

"The Russian Mission to the United Nations has released a standard-issue fundraising letter [from U.S. Republican presidential candidate John McCain]...addressed to the Russian envoy to the U.N., Vitaly Churkin, at the mission's address, but without his title....Bakhtin [press secretary of the Russian mission] confirmed the story to Politico...."We just find it amusing," he said....The Russian newswire RIA-Novosti tells it:"...

Russian newswire RIA-Novosti article linked above:

10/20/2008, "Russian UN mission gets letter from McCain seeking campaign cash," 

"UNITED NATIONS, October 20 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's permanent mission to the UN has received a letter from U.S. Republican presidential candidate John McCain asking for financial support of his election campaign, the mission said in a statement on Monday.

"We have received a letter from Senator John McCain with a request for a financial donation to his presidential election campaign. In this respect we have to reiterate that neither Russia's permanent mission to the UN nor the Russian government or its officials finance political activities in foreign countries," the statement said.

According to Ruslan Bakhtin, press secretary of the Russian mission, the letter dated September 29 and signed by McCain, was addressed to Vitaly Churkin, Russia's envoy to the UN, and arrived on October 16. 

The ambassador's title was not included in the letter, and was not clear why the letter had taken over two weeks to arrive. 

Enclosed was a request for a donation of up to $5,000 to McCain's election campaign to be returned with a check or permission to withdraw the money from the donor's credit card until October 24. 

Individual donations to candidates' election campaigns are capped by law at $2,300, and it is illegal to accept donations from foreign nationals

McCain accepted the $84 million in public financing available to his election campaign, and consequently cannot accept private donations. However, the Republican National Committee is collecting donations that can be used to support his candidacy in limited ways. 

Legal barriers aside, the request and the official response from the Russian mission appear even more confusing in the light of McCain's overall negative attitude toward Russia

Last year (2007) he said the G8 should exclude Russia, citing "diminishing political freedoms, a leadership dominated by a clique of former intelligence officers, [and] efforts to bully democratic neighbors." 

On August 12, during the brief conflict between Russia and Georgia in its breakaway region of South Ossetia, McCain said he had told Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili: "I know I speak for every American when I say to him, 'Today, we are all Georgians.''' 

The Gallup Poll daily tracking survey on Sunday showed Democrat Barack Obama leading McCain nationally by 10 percentage points, 52-42."


Fact Checking Goose Gossage's Fake Career claims such as the 'thrill' of his coming in with bases loaded: "Silly Goose: Mariano Rivera and the myth of the 7-out Save," Baseball Prospectus guest author Kevin Baker addresses Gossage statements point by point

Gossage boilerplate is addressed in Kevin Baker's 10/31/2011 Baseball Prospectus article. Gossage's eleven+ year long smear campaign against Mariano Rivera has become a second career for Gossage. Yankees provide venue and microphone, media sells the hate.


Mariano Rivera
Goose Gossage

"As for the "thrill" of (Gossage) coming in with bases loaded... it was limited to the other team's dugout."... 

10/31/2011, "Silly Goose: Mariano Rivera and the Myth of the Seven-Out Save," Kevin Baker, Guest at Baseball Prospectus, "Baseball ProGuestUs." (Rivera retired after the 2013 season)

"I used to love watching Goose Gossage pitch. With that wonderful rising fastball he was one of the best examples ever of the pure power game....

That’s why I was happy to see him elected to the Hall of Fame, an honor he heartily deserved. Gossage’s approach to the Hall was as straightforward as his pitching style. He campaigned actively by pointing out how much harder relief pitchers were worked back in his day than now, and how much more difficult it was to run up impressive save totals.

His points were well-taken, and now that he’s in the Hall…I wish he would shut up.

Over the last few years, the Goose’s advocacy for the pitchers of his era has turned more and more into carping about the closers of today, and especially Mariano Rivera. This is usually followed by some boilerplate about what a great competitor Rivera is, apples and oranges, blah blah blah. But more and more, it’s become downright pissy.

Worse yet, it’s begun to influence those highly impressionable young minds we call sportswriters and broadcasters.

“…when I pitched the ninth inning to save a three-run lead, coming in with no one on base, I felt guilty. I would go home and be embarrassed,” Gossage told Fox Sports online columnist Greg Couch last month. “Rivera is a great pitcher, but what he’s doing is easy. It really is.” 

Easy, huh?

Let’s have a quick show of (liver-spotted) hands: What springs to mind when you hear Goose Gossage talking about how “easy” it is to get through an inning without giving up three runs? 

George Brett hitting a three-run homer into the upper deck of Yankee Stadium to clinch the 1980 ALCS for the Royals? Yes, thank you, Yankees fans!

Can I get an “amen” from the Padres fans out there? Remember Kirk Gibson going deep to wrap up the 1984 World Series for the Tigers with a three-run blast…the inning after Lance Parrish

had already homered off Gossage? You stay classy, San Diego! 

That’s right, Rich Gossage’s two most famous moments in postseason history consist of him surrendering mammoth, three-run homers. 

But wait, that’s not really fair. Sure, it wasn’t strictly the postseason, but it was Goose Gossage out there on the mound saving the “Bucky Dent game,” the 1978 playoff between the Yankees and the Red Sox.

In that game, the Goose was actually given a three-run lead at one point…and barely survived, surrendering hits or walks to six of the last eleven Red Sox he faced. Save for a terrific head fake by Lou Piniella in right field, Boston would probably have tied the game in the ninth. 

Not so easy, holding on to a three-run lead.

Unfortunately, thanks to Goose, Fox’s Greg Couch joined all too many commentators in damning The Great One’s record-breaking 603 saves with faint praise. 

Couch claims that he doesn’t want “to doubt the greatness of Rivera,” but that there is “no way of knowing” if he is the greatest closer ever, due to the faulty, “fabricated” statistic that is the “save.” 

What would be a better one?

Well, Couch quotes approvingly a definition that’s been bandied about a lot recently. That is, a save of “seven outs or more”—or over two innings. Goose Gossage has 52 of these in the regular season, he informs us; Mariano Rivera…one, Trevor Hoffman, two. Optimally, what a real closer does, according to Couch and Goose, is to “come in during the
seventh inning, bases loaded, one-run lead.”
“I used to love that,” says Gossage. “They used to use and abuse us, but think of the pressure. You couldn’t even let them put the ball in play.”

I’m sorry, but just when did we start handing out style points for degree of difficulty? This is baseball, not gymnastics or figure skating. The idea is to win. If Mr. Couch covered music, would he be sneering, “Nice concerto, Mr. Heifetz. But let’s see you play it while crossing a high wire—riding a tricycle?”

I’ll concede that there are plenty of problems with the current save statistic. And some day, in baseball’s equivalent of punctuated equilibrium, a manager will climb out of the antediluvian ooze and try using his best relief pitcher in the most critical moment of the game, whether or not that’s in the ninth inning. (Although this is expecting a lot of prescience from the poor manager
and it still leaves that pesky ninth for someone to get through.)
But what the record shows is not that Mariano Rivera should be used more like Goose Gossage. It’s that Goose Gossage should’ve been used more like Mariano Rivera.
The basic idea here is that a relief pitcher is a weapon, and like all weapons, it makes sense to use it as wisely and efficiently as possible. Someone—I think it was Roger Angell—compared the closer to the cavalry of Napoleonic era warfare, designed not to make foolhardy frontal assaults, but to exploit breaches in the line and turn an opening into a rout. I think that’s a pretty fair analogy.

And when it comes right down to it, the weapon that was Goose Gossage was all too often sent charging into the guns, in acts of idiotic bravado.

Let’s examine first the mythology of the seven-out save—we’ll call it a “Supersave.”

Why seven outs and not, say, six, or nine? The whole idea seems at least as arbitrary and fabricated as the original save stat. For that matter, Gossage’s 52 Supersaves become a lot less impressive when you take into account the fact that he was a major-league pitcher for 22 seasons, and a reliever for 21 of them.

Thanks to the brilliant statistical work of Baseball Prospectus’ own Bradley Ankrom, we can report that the Goose was in fact only the master of the extended save
for a few seasons, most of them near the beginning of that very long career. 

He was at his best in 1975 when, as a 24-year-old hurler for a poor White Sox team, he converted 11 of 13 Supersave opportunities, throwing 141.2 innings. After flopping as a starter for the Sox the following year, he came back in 1977 to convert seven of nine Supersave chances, while throwing 133 innings.

Pretty spectacular. But this was clearly a young man’s game, and the Goose would not last at it. In 1978, at age 27, Gossage racked up six more Supersaves—but also blew six such chances. He had only two more good years at this sort of work—1980, when he converted nine of 11, and 1984, when he was six of seven.

After that, for the last nine years of his career, he racked up exactly four more saves of seven outs or more, while blowing two. Nor was the save rule always unkind to him; one of these “Supersaves” consisted of pitching four innings—beginning with an eight-run lead.
At the same time, the Goose would, according to my count, blow 25 Supersaves—or about one-third of all his opportunities, a ratio that would be unacceptable to most teams today. 

Yet this was pretty much in keeping with Gossage’s entire career record. Looking it over—thanks again to Mr. Ankrom’s industry—the first thing that jumps out at you is just how many games Goose Gossage managed to lose, compared to all leading closers today.

Even in 1977-78, two of his very best years, spent pitching for a hard-hitting Pirates club that won 96 games and a World Champion Yankees team, he lost a total of 20 games coming out of the pen, and blew 22 saves—in other words, almost one-third of the 129 total games those two teams lost. Nor was this an anomaly.

Throughout his career—spent largely with winning clubs—Gossage ran up double figures in blown saves in six of the 13 seasons when he was either his team’s primary closer or at least shared the role. 

Mariano Rivera, by contrast, has never lost more than six games in any one season, in his 15 straight years as the Yankees’ closer and another as their set-up man. He has blown more than six saves only once, in 1997, his first year as a closer, when he gave it up nine times.

It’s a big reason why Mo’s failures are so memorable. He reached almost ridiculous heights of efficiency in 2008 and 2009, blowing one and two saves, respectively, out of a total of 86 opportunities. It’s why his lifetime percentage of saves is a mind-blowing, all-time high of 90 percent, while Gossage’s is only 73.5 percent.

    Even in his heyday, the Goose routinely squandered between a quarter and a third of his save opportunities. In 1977, he managed to save only 72 percent of the leads he was sent in to preserve.

    • In 1978, just 69 percent,
    • in 1982, only about 77 percent;
    • 1983, 63 percent;
    • 1984, 69 percent;
    • 1986, 66 percent,
    • 1987, 65 percent;
    • 1988, 56.5 percent…
    after which even unevolved managers decided they’d just as soon find more novel ways to lose games.  

    Goose’s best years in terms of the percentages of games he would win and save out of the pen? Well, unsurprisingly, these tended to be in the seasons when he was used the most judiciously, if only by accident.

    Limited to 36 appearances and 58.1 innings in 1979, when Cliff Johnson broke his thumb in a showerroom brawl, the Goose saved a career-high 90 percent of his 21 save opportunities. In 1981, limited to just 32 appearances and 46.2 innings by an owners’ lockout, he was nearly untouchable, saving 87 percent of his opportunities (20 of 23), losing only two games, surrendering just 22 hits, two home runs, and 14 walks, and compiling an ERA of 0.77.

    You’d think somebody would have noticed just how much better the Goose did with more rest, and someone did—namely Dick Howser, the most perspicacious of all Gossage’s managers during this period. Howser limited him to “just” 99 innings in 1980, a full season…in which the Goose went 6-2 and saved 33 of 37 games, including nine Supersaves.

    Unfortunately for Gossage and the Yankees, Howser was fired after that one season (in no small part because of Goose’s insistence that he could throw a fastball past George Brett, a concept he never would rid himself of). Then in his thirties, the Goose was once again given over to the care and maintenance of managers who refused to make much allowance for his age or condition.

    I thought I remembered him being used in a particularly egregious fashion in 1983, which marked one of Billy Martin’s later and uglier incarnations as Yankees manager. Thanks once more to Bradley Ankrom, I was able to check if this was really so. Sure enough, it was.

    To be sure, Gossage’s overall innings totals remained more limited. But day to day, his use seemed more mindless than ever. Here, for instance, was the Goose’s first appearance: entering the second game of the season with one out in the bottom of the eighth inning and the Yankees trailing Seattle, 6-2.

    Why, exactly? To beat the spread? Because Martin had dinner reservations at the Space Needle? 

    This set a pattern. Gossage would enter seven more games that year with his team trailing in the seventh inning or later, four of which they were losing by more than one run. Only once would they rally to win.

    If there ever was a manager willing to indulge a pitcher’s desire to get out on the mound and stay there, it was Billy Martin. 

    Throughout 1983, Gossage—now 32 years old—would attempt six more Supersaves but convert only one of them.
    It wasn’t that Goose was finished, or close to it. He still threw hard, still allowed just 82 hits and 25 walks in 87.1 innings; still struck out 90, won 13 games, and saved 22 more while compiling a 2.27 ERA. But he did blow 13 savesin a year the Yankees finished seven games out of first—and clearly seemed less able to get outs when he wanted them. 

    This leads us to the other part of Gossage and Couch’s blather about what a “real” save should look like. That is, how “thrilled” Goose always was to come in with runners on base, particularly “bases loaded in the seventh inning.”

    Throughout that 1983 season, it struck me that Gossage—now an older pitcher who probably required more time to get ready—gave up more hits and walks than ever to the first batter or two he faced, then seemed to settle down. Yet Martin almost never seemed to use him to start an inning.

    The record confirms this, too. Of his 57 appearances in 1983, just four of them started an inning. In all but four of these, there was already at least one man on base. As for the “thrill” of coming in with the bases loaded…it was limited to the other team’s dugout. Goose faced that situation exactly four times all yearand every time, he surrendered hits that scored one or two runs.

    Over the entire course of his career, Gossage would enter regular-season games with the bases loaded 48 times—far more than any closer, or even set-up man, is likely to do today. In those games he performed well…but slightly worse than he did in the rest of his appearances, compiling 16 saves and a win but also blowing eight saves.

    The whole notion of using Gossage this way in the first place is baffling. Why limit your big power pitcher by constantly making him pitch out of the stretch? Never mind pitch counts; do you really have so little idea of when your starter (or another reliever) is running out of steam?

    Goose coming in mid-inning in 1983 suffered all five of his losses and all 13 of his blown saves, compiling a 2.32 ERA. His four appearances starting an inning are too small to be statistically meaningful, but it is interesting to note that while he gave up five hits and two walks in those six innings, he surrendered just one run and saved a game.

    The moral here is, take care of your tools—or your weapons—and they’ll take care of you. “Abused,” as he claimed, for most of his career, Goose was in serious decline as a relief pitcher by his early thirtieswhereas Mariano continues as one of the very best relievers in the game at 42.

      The abuse of the Goose was particularly unnecessary when you consider the fact that he played most of his career with very capable bullpen matesKent Tekulve and Terry Forster on the Pirates; Dick Tidrow, Sparky Lyle, Ron Davis, and Dave Righetti on the Yankees; Craig Lefferts on the Padres, etc. It wasn’t a case of desperate managers trying to eke out an extra win with no one else to turn to. Goose and Couch assert that when Gossage appeared on the scene, “the bullpen was just a junk pile of washed-up starters who couldn’t throw nine innings anymore, or guys who weren’t quite good enough to start.” 

      But like so much else of which they speak, it ain’t necessarily so. 

      Managers had been dabbling intermittently with the idea of specialty relievers since the days of John McGraw, and by the time Goose Gossage came up in 1972, there had been quite a few good ones.  

      That is, men who were outstanding pitchers, expected from an early age to throw mostly or solely in relief: Joe Page, Hoyt Wilhelm, Clem Labine, Ryne Duren, Elroy Face, Lindy McDaniel, Dick Radatz, Luis Arroyo, Ron Perranoski, Pedro Ramos, Phil Regan, Wayne Granger, Clay Carroll, Dave Guisti, Tug McGraw, Sparky Lyle, Rollie Fingers, to name just a few.

      These closers threw different pitches and had different backgrounds, but they all had one thing in common: either they burned out after a few wildly successful seasons, or they
      suffered mysterious “off years” throughout their careers. 
      The answer to the “mystery” was, of course, that they were overworked. Managers were so thrilled by this new weapon, one that would preserve their every lead—or so it seemed—that they couldn’t help themselves from overusing it.

      “Never save a pitcher for tomorrow. Tomorrow it might rain,” was Leo Durocher’s famous adage, and it became their watchword, even though it was never supposed to apply to relievers throwing on a daily basis.

      Goose Gossage had enough arm strength, enough bulk, and enough mental toughness to endure much longer than this generation of abused pitchers, and he deserves all the accolades he’s won. But too often, his remarkable gifts were wasted—the baseball equivalent of blindly throwing cavalry at artillery batteries (a tactic that would be immortalized as, “The Charge of the Light Brigade”).

      The very idea of a relief pitcher is that of someone who has one extraordinary pitch—and one only. If they have more, they are being wasted as a reliever and should be moved into the starting rotation. Overusing a reliever not only weakens his arm over the long run of the season or his career, it also provides hitters with the opportunity to adjust to his specialty pitch—and given enough opportunities, at least in the same game, major-league hitters will adjust to any pitch you can throw.

      Here’s one more statistic to throw the trade-off between save and Supersave into full relief: over the course of his career, Goose Gossage threw some 600 more innings than Mariano Rivera (although 224 of these came in Goose’s one season used almost exclusively as a starter, while Rivera threw only 67.1 in 1995, when the Yanks gave him 10 starts).

      However, by the year he turned 35, Gossage was throwing fewer innings per season than Rivera was for every year he was the same age. And throughout their respective careers,
      Mo almost always logged more appearances.
      So the cost of Goose’s Supersaves was more blown saves, fewer appearances, and a foreshortened career. Tell me again: Why is it better to have an athlete try to do something he can’t do as well when he overextends himself, especially when that something makes him less available to his team and less effective over the course of his career?

      Still, even if you could convince Couch and Gossage that it’s infinitely more rational to use relievers the way they are used today, rather than in romantic times of yore, they would argue that this only confirms Goose’s opinion that he was “abused” by his managers. It doesn’t answer the main thing they claim to want to know, which is: Who’s better? Who’s the best?   
      In this sense, Couch is right—it’s arguing apples and oranges, and ultimately unknowable.

      To wonder if Mariano could have carried Goose’s old pitching load without breaking down is about as useful as wondering if Roy Halladay could have pitched four hundred innings a year, the way Joe McGinnity and Happy Jack Chesbro did over a hundred years ago. (The answer is…yes, probably, if you started all the games in the late afternoon and handed Mr. Halladay a ball he could spit on, rub any sort of gunk on, and not replace until it had become a wobbly, soggy, gray mess.)  

      Certainly, Rivera doesn’t have Gossage’s bulk…although as a young set-up man back in 1996, he did throw 107 innings, firing almost entirely fastballs that moved as much as the Goose’s ever did."...

      [Ed. note: In 1996, Rivera threw 107.2 innings in regular season and 14.1 innings in post season for a total of 122 innings. In the 1996 World Series, he was used in 4 of the 6 games including 3 days in a row, Oct. 21, 22, and 23. In game 6 on Oct. 26, Rivera provided two scoreless innings, the 7th and 8th, his 121st and 122nd innings of 1996, entering with the score Yankees 3, Braves 1. Wetteland pitched the 9th, gave up one run, the final score Yankees 3, Braves 2.]

      (continuing): "Could Mo have kept up that pace year in and year out, even with his famous cutter? Who knows? Gossage certainly didn’t; his effectiveness falling off as dramatically
      as his yearly innings by his early-to-mid thirties.

      Of course, what Couch and Gossage are driving at is how good Goose would have been in the modern era of relief pitching, free to just come in at the start of the ninth, with no one on base. I suspect he would have been spectacularly successful…although again, who knows?

      Rivera has pitched, after all, almost entirely in an era of bandbox ballparks and souped-up sluggers. While it would not surprise me to learn that any ballplayer today has used performance-enhancing drugs, it seems unlikely that Mo has ever done so, considering the course of his career, his body type, his declining velocity over the years, and his religious convictions.

      This would mean that he has played his entire career with a handicap unlike anything that Goose was ever subjected to. Would a fastball pitcher with a wild streak, stubbornly maintaining that he could throw his ball past anyone, anytime, really have fared so well in an age of steroidal hitters who specialize in working pitch counts? Just how many of all those impressive Gossage innings included popping up bandy-legged shortstops on the first pitch, or getting batters to fly out to the far reaches of stadiums built mainly for football?

      Maybe Gossage would’ve made adjustments. The great ones usually do…although it’s hard not to forget the famous footage of the Goose talking Dick Williams out of making him walk Kirk Gibson intentionally in the eighth inning of that 1984 World Series finale, while over in the other dugout,
      Sparky Anderson bet Gibson ten dollars that Gossage would pitch to him. 

      Team be damned—it was all about how hard the Goose could throw. 

      There is one further indication of how Mariano Rivera might have fared in the Gossage era, and that’s his prodigious postseason record. During the regular season, along with those 603 saves, Mo has a 75-57 record and a lifetime ERA of 2.21—the best ever compiled in the live-ball era, depending on how you want to measure it—along with just 934 hits and 275 walks in 1,211.1 innings, and 1,111 strikeouts, figures so gaudy they’re almost absurd.

      But in his postseason appearances, which by now have amounted to an extra season, or maybe two seasons, [it does amount to two extra seasons of relief at 70IP per season, total of 141 innings] of pitching, Rivera is even better…much better. Against the best teams in baseball, with everything at stake, he’s run up an 8-1 record, with 42 saves in 47 attempts, allowing 21 walks and 81 hits against 110 strikeouts

      in 141 innings and compiling an ERA of 0.70.

      Yet the most salient fact about all those playoff games is how dramatically Rivera changed his usual pitching habits in them.

      You want seven outs? Mariano has provided four such appearances in the postseason; in none of them did he allow a run or an inherited runner to score. They included a couple of the most memorable playoff games in history; his coming out, a 3.1-inning victory over Seattle in the 1995 American League Division Series, and the three unforgettable innings he pitched to win the Aaron Boone game” against Boston in the ALCS finale in 2003.

      You want two-inning appearances? Rivera has run up 29 of those in the postseason, garnering four wins, 14 saves, and three holds.

      You want more than one inning? Mo has another 24 one-inning-plus playoff appearances to his credit, earning another 16 saves and a hold.

      In other words, 57 of Rivera’s 96 playoff appearances have been for more than one inning. In them, he has run up half of his eight postseason wins and almost three-quarters of his 42 postseason saves. 

      You want inherited runners? In nearly a third of his playoff appearances—30 out of 96—Rivera has entered the game with runners on base; a total of 48 of them,
      14 of them on second, 11 on third.

      He has prevented all but eight of them—or one-sixth—from scoring. 

      And yes, he’s come into postseason games with the bases loaded. He did it in his first year in the playoffs against Seattle, age 25, and he did it just this fall, in the ALDS against Detroit, age nearly 42.
      In each case, he struck out the next batter to end the inning.

      Gossage’s record in the playoffs, while much more abbreviated, is also outstanding. In 19 appearances, he had two wins and eight saves, with an ERA of 2.87, and 21 hits, 10 walks, and 29 strikeouts in 31.1 innings. He inherited runners on six different occasions, ten in all, and allowed only one to score. In 1981, easily his best postseason, the well-rested Goose did indeed come into the seventh inning of a game the Yankees were winning 1-0, in the second game of the special ALDS that year, and retired Robin Yount and Cecil Cooper in a bravura performance.

      That was the only time he ever did it. But he also managed to blow three of eleven save opportunities in his postseason career, as well as effectively taking San Diego out of that last game of the 1984 World Series. In 1980, he wouldn’t have even had to face George Brett had he not given up a two-out single to Royals’ shortstop U.L. Washington (who’s “embarrassed” now?).

      Yet somehow these blips have dropped from most sportswriters’ memories, while one after another
      felt obliged to bring up the fact that Rivera “had his failures in the postseason, almost as if he were the Greg Norman of relief pitching.

      It’s instructive to take a look at those “failures.” Mariano has blown all of five saves in the postseason. One of these was Sandy Alomar’s famous, opposite-field home run in the 1997 ALDS that barely cleared the right-field fence—and only tied Game Five of that series.
      One was the even more famous Yankees meltdown in the seventh game of the 2001 World Series, where Mo—after pitching a scoreless eighth inningwas victimized more by the fielding of himself and his teammates than his pitching (and when Joe Torre foolishly decided to move his infield in, behind a pitcher who specialized in weak pop-ups to the near outfield).

      The other three came within a space of 13 days in the 2004 playoffs, after a season in which Rivera had set career marks in appearances and saves, with 69 and 53, respectively. In the midst of this period,
      he had to make a hurried flight to Panama and back to deal with the tragic death of his cousins in a pool accident. 

      Nonetheless, Joe “Breaker of Pitchers” Torre decided to call on Rivera seven times in this span, including three two-inning stints and three more of five or six outs. One of the blown saves was when Rivera gave up the tying runs to the Twins in the ALDS, in a game the Yanks later won in extra innings.

      The other two, of course, came against Boston. One was Game Five of the ALCS, in which Mo gave up a sacrifice fly to tie the game after coming in men on first and third—something that tells you most of what you need to know about the problems with the save statistic. The other was the famous “Dave Roberts game”

      although here again, Rivera, in his second inning of work, gave up the tying but not the winning run.

      In other words, in 96 tries, Mariano River has never given up an earned run that lost a ballgame in the postseason. Used as he was “supposed” to be used—that is, the way he was used through most of the season, brought in at the start of the ninth inning—he has never surrendered a lead in he postseason, period. The only postseason contest where Rivera was really even hit hard was Game Two of the 2000 World Series against the Mets when, rushed in to save a floundering Jeff Nelson, he gave up a two-run homer to Jay Payton, and nearly another one to Todd Zeile. The Mets almost broke through—almost.

      Throughout his career, Mariano Rivera has been the most brilliant of weapons, a stiletto expertly applied to win a great many ballgames with his one, unhittable pitch. What he has done is unique in the history not just of baseball, but all athletics:

      appearing for a decade-and-a-half, only when the game is on the line, and succeeding nine times out of ten in preserving victory.
      No other athlete in a team sport has ever performed so consistently under pressure.

      Yet when jerked out of the security of his usual role and used in a very different role—when his managers have tried to use the stiletto as a meat axe—he has actually picked up his game. Taxed beyond his usual endurance, at the end of a long and wearing season, and against the best teams and hitters in the game…he has performed better than ever.

      If they want to contribute something, Goose Gossage and Greg Couch should take up the worthy cause of getting some of Goose’s other contemporaries into the Hall with him (Sparky Lyle, anyone?). In trying to denigrate what Mariano Rivera has accomplished, they only make themselves look foolish."


      Among comments to BP on the above article:

      10/31/11, "randolph3030 (17064)"

      "Couldn't agree more. I would love to be able to love Goose, but he's such a jerk about Rivera it makes it hard. One big difference between the workloads of the two pitchers is the quality of the batter faced. In the 70s and 80s relatively few hitters were able to punish a pitcher in comparison those of the 90s and 00s. Rivera has been amazing during in an era when middle-infielders hit 30/40/50 homeruns in a season. Most of the SS that Goose faced didn't hit 50 in a career. I never could figure out a proper way to frame a study of results vs. top quality opposition to see who fared better against the best opponents. Results vs. players with OPS+;100? Per season? Per career?"

      • ------------------------

      "delatopia (19303)

       To me this article is a perfect example of the difference between daily journalism and reflective, non-deadline sites like BP. Not defending Couch's point of view, the angle he took or the correctness of his pronouncements, which I think are seriously flawed, but the guy probably has to file three or maybe even four columns a week -- a pace I'd never want to operate at. When you've got to fill the maw of a beast that's never full, you're going to go oftentimes for the column that generates the most reaction while also being the easiest to file -- call the loquacious Gossage, do a little research, spend a couple of hours over the keyboard letting beads of blood form on your forehead (was that Red Smith's quote?), and that's one column down. Of the three that your job requires that week. That being said, those columns should be taken apart (as was done most excellently here), if only to correct the record and add a dissenting view in the marketplace of ideas. I don't like that newspapers and websites demand so much of their columnists. But I think it does mitigate the situation somewhat to understand what those guys are up against, and take these things with a grain of salt."


      11 related links:


      1. 1/6/2006, "It's an insult to me to even be compared to Mariano Rivera, it really is....The job is easy compared to what we used to do. It's apples and oranges." "Gossage beyond compare," Denver Post, Jim Armstrong


      2. 1/5/2008--Gossage admits he had it easier than pitchers in the 1990s and 2000s:

      "Gossage's strong opinions have not been limited to his own career. He thinks there ought to be some method of denoting in baseball's history books that offense increased in the 1990s and 2000s, partly because of smaller ballparks, tightly wrapped baseballs and a shrinking strike zone." (6th parag. from end). "Goose Gossage hopes Hall of Fame vote provides relief," AP via ESPN


      57 of Rivera's 96 post season appearances from 1995 ALDS through 2011 ALDS were multi-inning. Against the game's best hitters, under the greatest pressure, when most other relief pitchers were resting up to pad the next year's regular season stats:

      3. 10/25/2001--CNN/, "Rivera Like Closers of Old," Jacob Luft, and here. (The original link to the 2001 CNN/SI piece appears to be dead. I copied it in Jan. 2008)

      "In an era when closers often come with a "Handle with Care" label, Yankees reliever Mariano Rivera is a true throwback.

      • Most managers pamper their high-priced closers, bringing them in for the last three outs of a game after an unheralded setup guy wiggles out of the eighth-inning jam.
      The inflated save totals end up devaluing the statistic, making a 30-save season seem downright pedestrian, if not easy. 

      But Rivera in October is different. He's Rollie Fingers without the handlebar mustache, Goose Gossage without the showmanship.

      Rivera has the most postseason saves in history with 23 [as of Oct. 2001]. And that's not a soft 23, either, with 17 of them demanding more than one inning of work."... 

      Note: Rivera ended his career in 2013 with 42 postseason saves, 8 postseason Wins, and 1 postseason loss.

      4. 7/15/2010, "Just How good is Mariano Rivera," by Dr. Michael Hoban,

      Mariano Rivera is the best reliever in baseball history.” [Based on regular season only].


      5. 2007 book: "At this point in his career, Mo Rivera is way ahead of the HOF standard and could emerge as the greatest relief pitcher to date." BASEBALL’S BEST: The TRUE Hall of Famers," by Michael Hoban, Ph.D. "Chapter 11, Two Special Categories of Pitchers," "Now, what about the true relief pitchers, that is, those who had very few (or no) starts and spent the bulk of their careers in relief? Is there any way that we can arrive at a fair standard for HOF induction for these pitchers based strictly on the numbers? Of course, we need a tough standard that only the truly outstanding relievers will meet." [This study didn't include post season or All Star].


      6. 9/20/2011, "The Best Reliever of All Time, Mariano Rivera," FanGraphs, Steve Slowinski [Based on regular season only]


      7. 4/25/2012, "A lot of times, people don't understand mentally and physically how you have to overextend when you go to the playoffs and World Series," (Dusty) Baker said. "You're still pitching while everybody else is home resting. That's a lot more. And you have less time to recover for next year. You have a shorter winter. Winning takes its toll, big time. There's nothing better than that, but it takes its toll."" "7 closers on DL, showing it's a high-risk job," AP, Joe Kay

      8. Joe Maddon: "He's (Rivera) the best closer in the history of our game." NY Times, 5/4/2012

      "His (Rivera's) ability to pitch multiple innings in October, the way the pioneering closers did, has made him invaluable."...NY Times

      5/4/2012, "For Rivera, Maestro of Ninth, Injury Is Not Final Symphony," NY Times, Tyler Kepner  

      "Mattingly added: “I’d hate to see him end like this. I’d rather see him come back and pitch than thinking your last view of him is going down on the track.” 

      Joe Maddon, the manager of the Tampa Bay Rays, had a similar reaction. 

      It upsets me,” Maddon said in St. Petersburg, Fla. “He is a very special person. You know that the moment you meet him. He’s the best closer in the history of our game. You don’t want to see him possibly ending his career shagging a fly in Kansas City. I think he’s the player most responsible for their success over the last 15 years.” 

      Unquestionably, as Maddon said, Rivera is the best closer ever. His 2.21 [regular season] career earned run average is the lowest, with a minimum of 1,000 innings, since 1920, and he is even better when the games matter most. 

      Rivera’s postseason E.R.A. is 0.70. He has not allowed a postseason homer since the 2000 World Series. His (Rivera's) ability to pitch multiple innings in October, the way the pioneering closers did, has made him invaluable."


      9. 3/6/2010, "Pinstripes Then, Now and Forever," NY Times, Joe Brescia

      "A.(Gossage): When I was inducted into the Hall of Fame, I was told that I had 53 saves with seven-plus outs. I was told that Mariano had one and Trevor Hoffman had two. So I think that says it in a nutshell.

      Q. (NY Times): How do you think you would do if you were closing games today?

      A. It’s hard to say what my statistics would be if I was used for only one inning like these guys. I had longevity. When I got a one-inning save, I felt guilty. Guys would kid me: You’re going to take that? Does that count?”"


      10. In his 1984 World Series deciding game 5, 10/14/1984,  Gossage wasn't asked to protect a lead, just to keep his Padres team close as it trailed 4-3, but he gave up two home runs to the Tigers, one in the bottom of the 7th (which he entered with one out and bases empty), and one in the bottom of the 8th with two men on--both put on by Gossage. His name wasn't involved in the decision. In the 7th Gossage gave up a home run to the first batter he faced, Lance Parrish, making the score 5-3. Gossage came back in the 8th (bases empty), Padres trailing 5-4, facing hitters 9-1-2. He walked the first batter, put a second batter on, and gave up a 3 run home run to his 4th batter, Kirk Gibson making the score 8-4 which became the final score.

      He appeared in only two of the five 1984 World Series games, in neither case was he asked to protect a lead and both of which his team lost. His season ended on Oct. 14, 1984 so he didn't experience the "abuse" of shorter off seasons and recovery times pitchers later did. For example Rivera's 2009 World Series didn't end until  Nov. 4.


      11. 9/18/2011, "Mariano Rivera, a closer like no other," AP, Ronald Blum 

      "While Rivera is a 12-time All-Star [he ended his career in 2013 as a 13 time All Star], he prefers to be thought of more as a five-time World Series champion. And in 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2009, he was on the mound for the final out. 

      Talk to most players, and they will tell you that Rivera has been the most important stripe forming the pinstriped dynasty of the 1990s and 2000s. More than Derek Jeter. More than Andy Pettitte. More than Jorge Posada. More than Bernie Williams.

      There is no equal. 

      "It's a huge psychological advantage when you've got a guy like Mariano and a great setup corps," Gossage said, "to know that it's a six-inning ballgame. You've got the lead, and it's over." 

      In the 2009 postseason, Boston's Jonathan Papelbon, Minnesota's Joe Nathan, the Angels' Brian Fuentes, Colorado's Huston Street, the Cardinals' Ryan Franklin and the Dodgers' Jonathan Broxton all blew save chances.

      Rivera? He went 5 for 5 [pitched a total of 16 innings in the 2009 post season which didn't end until Nov. 4]. Philadelphia's Brad Lidge, with three saves, was the only other closer without a blemish.

      "That is so incredible. To be able to do it at that level, with that pressure. Try to do it in that environment, in New York, with them expecting to go to the playoffs every year," Eckerlsey said. 

      "He's made differently. There's a calm to him. And because of that, there's a calm to the team.""


      Comment: Goose Gossage has gotten himself 11+ years of media headlines by spewing hatred and making defamatory statements about Mariano Rivera. Just the role model for kids. With help from Gossage partners the Yankees and the media, we're to believe that 11 years of sick, slanderous, and misleading claims are worth continued attention. We're told Gossage is "outspoken," and a "quote machine." This apparently means that whatever he says is cool and fine, even exciting, and we're supposed to shut up or better yet, marvel at the man spewing the hate. Has it occurred to his enablers that Gossage's long running obsession is a sign of serious mental or emotional problems? No matter, Gossage has been given a full time second career by the Yankees and the media ("the conscience of the game"). The purpose of the 2nd career is twofold: to elevate the perceived skill and genius of Gossage's baseball career and to defame and diminish those of Mariano Rivera.

      In all the "exciting" years of Gossage headlines one never hears about Rivera's 141 post season innings against the best hitters and under the greatest pressure. Aside from the results he obtained including a .70 ERA, the most ignored fact about these innings is they were sandwiched into the same calendar years in which the separate 'career' stats are obtained. But they're not added to regular season stats. These are calendar years in which Rivera had shorter off seasons and less time to recover than others. These 141 innings equal two additional years of relief pitching at 70 innings per year. For the record, Gossage has 31.1 post season innings, a postseason ERA of 2.87, and he gave up 3 home runs--one every ten innings. In Rivera's 141 post season innings he gave up only 2 home runs--one every 70 innings. 57 of Rivera's 96 post season appearances from 1995 ALDS through 2011 ALDS were multi-inning appearances.

      Yankee management is of course Gossage's biggest enabler. They invite him to spring training. Like clockwork: he bashes Rivera, says it's "insulting" to be compared to him, and the media runs and puts Gossage's name and his "news" in headlines. A stray headline might say Goose should just shut up or some such, but every article and every mention in print, internet, radio, and television, rings the Gossage cash register. When 2019 HOF voting rolls around, Gossage's voting pals will have absorbed 13+ years of hate. Votes will be public, people who don't normally get much attention will get lots of it.

      If you just write what he says--controversy and negativity sell--you've done your job without doing any actual work. If the media wants to do some meaningful or even helpful reporting (which may not be possible in its existing business model), they could ask the question why after 11+ years of bashing Rivera, should Gossage (or anyone) continue to be given the spotlight and quoted by baseball media? Why should such a person be allowed on Yankee property ever again, much less invited to Yankee spring training? He can come to Old Timers Day, but if he's not able to remain silent about Rivera he should no longer be allowed on Yankee property.

      Yankee management may not care, but remaining Yankee fans are very much aware that there's no more "dynasty," no more "Core Four," no more November baseball, no more excitement, and none expected for the rest of many of our lifetimes. It wasn't the Yankee brand that enabled Yankee owners to build the new Stadium. In the mid to late 1990s, George Steinbrenner still thought that the only way to build Yankee Stadium attendance was to move the Stadium to Manhattan. What finally built Yankee Stadium attendance in the old Stadium was winning dramatically in the post season in grinding, clutch performances. That's all long gone in 2017. For me, the only excitement on the horizon is seeing Alex Rodriguez as a guest instructor.

      On top of losing our special team, we have a team management that allows an endless hate campaign against one of our lost heroes, Mariano Rivera, who's probably more responsible for the new Yankee Stadium than any other single player.



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