The Baseball Desert

Sunday, September 28, 2003


Not 'games behind', which is the stat we've all been watching for the last month or so, but GooseBumps, which is what I got watching Roger Clemens walking back to the dugout in Yankee Stadium yesterday after being taken out of the game by Yankee manager Joe Torre. Torre deliberately sent Clemens out to the mound as if he were going to pitch the seventh inning, and then Torre came out to take Clemens out of the game, so that Rocket could get the standing ovation he deserved from the Yankee Stadium crowd in his final regular-season start. The respect that Clemens has earned over 17 seasons and 310 career wins can be measured by the fact that not only were the crowd and his team-mates applauding him, but also the Baltimore Orioles, led by manager Mike Hargrove. There was a nice symmetry to Hargroves's gesture - he was Clemens first strikeout victim back in Clemens' rookie season in 1984, and he was there on the dugout steps as Clemens took his final (regular season) curtain-call at Yankee Stadium...