Yankees, baseball suffer major scare

Love him or hate him, you can't deny that baseball needs George Steinbrenner.

Updated: December 29, 2003, 8:54 AM ET
By Jim Baker | MLB Insider
  • Veteran scribe Bill Conlin of the Philadelphia Inquirer eulogizes Paul Owens, the man who helmed the Phillies front office during their run to glory in the late '70s and which culminated in their only World Championship in 1980. Conlin focuses on a number of right-at-the-deadline trades while giving biographical details (Owens fought at the Siege of Metz in World War II) and concludes he was the best baseball man with whom he ever got to hang around.

  • Ivan Calderon is eulogized by Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune. Calderon, who enjoyed his best years with the White Sox, was gunned down in his native Puerto Rico over the weekend. From the sketchy details available, it appears to have been premeditated, although it is too early to seriously speculate without a full police investigation.

  • It's sometimes hard to remember that George Steinbrenner is 73 years old. Such is his energy and vitality -- and the fact that he never seemed like a young man -- that we often forget he is well past the age that most people retire. Steinbrenner had a scare on Saturday when he passed out at a memorial service for football great Otto Graham. While he appears to be perfectly fine, it is a reminder that there will, someday, be a post-Steinbrenner Yankees. Selena Roberts of the New York Times writes that love him or hate him, you can't deny that baseball needs him.
    Jim Baker is an author at Baseball Prospectus and a frequent contributor to Page 2. You can e-mail Jim at