Sunday, February 26, 2006

What is up with Sheff?

Gary Sheffield's outburst earlier in the week shocked us all as just a day after the slugger looked set to have his 2007 option picked up, the right-fielder said that he didn't trust the GM and he didn't care what happened to the contract and was even willing to be traded, I'm not surprised most Yankee fans heads were spinning.

Sheffield as we all know is a bit of a livewire to say the least. He is arguably the most feared hitter in the Yankees line-up and he brings an intensity to the club which helps. However the Yankees don't like people who go into the year worrying about their future, traditionally the Yankees have always rewarded players handsomely for good performances and if it is merited, the club will without doubt trigger the option on Sheffield for next season.

So why did he fly off at the handle, not just at ESPN but also at the Yankees, and in particular the GM, Brian Cashman? Is he trying to force his hand and get the option exercised before the season starts? Quite possibly, but more than likely is that he was just doing what he's been known for throughout his career, being a jerk.

His undoubted ability has always been overshadowed in some respects by his attitude. No-one can argue with his production, his devastating bat speed and his willingness, but off the field he has always been difficult and he, like Barry Bonds just seem to make it hard for fans to root for them. Whilst A-Rod tries so hard to get everyone to love him, Sheffield just seems to open his gob before engaging brain.

The Yankees won't be trading him that is for sure, he knows that, but as long as he acts like a spoilt brat, which is how he's acting, then the higher the odds are that he won't be back for 2007. The Yankees won't be bent over a barrel by anyone and Sheffield needs to realise that kicking up a fuss might help in a smaller franchise who need his star quality and production, but in the Bronx, things are done the Yankee way, and if he doesn't want to do it that they then the two will part company.

He will be paid $13m over this year, personally I wouldn't mind $13m in my lifetime, and yet he's throwing his toys out of the pram about next year. I'm really not impressed by Sheffield, but I suppose if he puts up the numbers then all will be ok, but I feel the likelihood of him patrolling RF beyond this year is slowly but surely ever dwindling.

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