Steinbrenner difficult to avoid

From now until their last out, the Yankees will dominate the news in ways we have not heretofore seen.

Updated: February 23, 2004, 1:56 PM ET
By Jim Baker | MLB Insider
The news out of Florida is that Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter are not exactly hitting it off perfectly so far in this spring training session? That is devastating news. How can any of us, in good conscience, attend to the duties of our daily lives without having this crisis as the foremost thing on our minds?

Want more devastating news? Yankee owner George Steinbrenner is on the verge of filing a grievance against Red Sox owner John Henry for comments Henry made that compared him to insult-comedian Don Rickles. Since Rickles last said something funny about 30 years ago, Steinbrenner clearly thinks his sense of humor was being called into question. This has him hot under the collar.

Bernie Williams
Bernie Williams is batting just .221 in 36 games this season.
Then there's the centerfield controversy to think about. Bernie Williams has been the Yankee man in the middle for the last decade, but the team has brought in an interloper, Kenny Lofton. While Lofton has offered to take his turn as designated hitter, the controversy is there: Who is the Yankees' true centerfielder? Sure Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News is reporting that both players seem amenable to whatever might come, but this is just one more thing to worry about. Will any of us sleep at all this year, fretting over the Yankees and their many, many problems?
Jim Baker is an author at Baseball Prospectus and a frequent contributor to Page 2. You can e-mail Jim at