Hinske, the Glenallen Hill of 2009?

During last night’s game, Mike and I texted back and forth and touted Cashman for the acquisitions of Hairston and Hinske, the latter of whom has hit seven homers in a mere 23 games as a Yankee.  As Jay at Fack Youk has rightly said, Cashman deserves a lot of credit for the composition of the 2009 Yanks, including the recent additions to the bench and, not to be overlooked, moves not made, most notably for Washburn and Halliday.  I concur all around.

Sterling made a couple good points during last night’s game. In particular, he compared the acquisitions of Hairston and Hinske with those Cashman made in 2000.  The team got David Justice, who had many clutch hits including the go-ahead homer off the facade in the six-run seventh off historic Yankee punching bag Arthur Rhodes in Game 6 of the 2000 ALCS, and brought back Luis Sojo, who hit .288 down the stretch and drove in the winning runs in Game 5 of the World Series clincher against the Mets.  Great points by Sterling, noting that Justice sparked an offense that Paul O’Neill characterized as “dead in the water” in 2000.  Definitely.

Yet, as I said to the computer aloud during the game–the computer and I have a lot of one-way conversations during Yankees games–Sterling left someone out.  I say this not to denigrate Sterling who, despite a recent spate of faux pas, is still someone whose touch, timing, and humor during broadcasts I genuinely appreciate.  Rather, it is telling that Sterling did not mention one player Cashman and the Yanks acquired in 2000 who did the same as Justice for a languid offense, yet often gets overlooked–Glenallen Hill, whose 2000 very much reminds me of what Hinske is doing this year.  All Hill did down the stretch was bat .333, hit 16 homers, and drive in 29–in just 40 games with the Yankees, strengthening the bottom of the order like Hinske.  He crushed a pinch-hit grand slam in the top of the 9th in Minnesota July 28 to maintain a 2 1/2 game lead over Boston.  His two-out RBI single in the sixth off an over-achieving Appier in Game 2 of the ALDS broke a scoreless tie, and helped the Yanks even the series at a game apiece.  His fielder’s choice in the second inning of Game 3 of the ALDS got the Yanks on the board and tied the game at one, and his walk in the eighth kept a rally alive in which the Yanks added an insurance run in a 4-2 win.  He was an all-around masher savant for the Yanks and, even though he did little else in the post-season for the Yanks, he was integral to their getting there in 2000 by revitalizing their offense.

I like Sterling’s point analogizing Cashman’s acquisition of Hairston and Hinske to the 2000 moves of the powerful, clutch Justice and the versatile, clutch Sojo.  Yet Hill also had a lot to do with that team’s championship run, and to me provides the more apt comparison to the prodigious Hinske this year.  Hill is a player well worth remembering for what he did in 2000.

Published in: on September 3, 2009 at 3:18 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Great call Jason… my buddy Joe said the same thing while we were watching the game last night.

  2. Maybe the reason Sterling didn’t mention him (just supposing here) is the mention that Hill had in the Mitchell Report.

    Just saying. It’s the one thing about that 2000 Yankee team that breaks my heart…him, Canseco, Knobby, Grimsley, others…

    and God knows how many more on other teams.

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