Thursday, April 7, 2011

Yankees Soriano Didn't Answer Relief Call Or One From His Mom

Much has been made of the Yankees Rafael Soriano's eighth-inning meltdown and subsequent vanishing act from the Yankees clubhouse on Tuesday night; but it looks like reporters weren't the only ones blown off by the surly pitcher.  Soriano wouldn' even take a phone call from his own mother after the 10-inning loss.

Soriano refused to accept a postgame call from his mom; who had been watching the game from her home in the Dominican Republic.

After giving up a four run lead over the Minnesota Twins at Yankee Stadium, Soriano avoided the media and ignored his mother's phone call because he was too upset to talk.

"I didn't answer my phone because I didn't feel comfortable to talk to her," Soriano explained on Wed. afternoon.  "I said, 'Let me go home, relax and get ready for today.'"

The unsociable pitcher made a major Yankee faux-paux by not speaking with the self-entitled New York press--especially when it was his first week in pinstripes--but to diss your own mom.

Soriano finally addressed the media at the urging of the Yankee organization after some players steamed--none publicly--that they were left holding the dye-pack after Soriano's criminal pitching performance and escape routine.

"I'm apologizing that I didn't talk to you guys last night," Soriano said before last night's rained out game.  "The reason I didn't was because that game CC [Sabathia] was supposed to win.  That's why I got mad  and I didn't feel comfortable talking to you guys.  I know last night I was supposed to talk to you guys and I left."

Yankees manager Joe Girardi explained to Soriano that facing the press in New York after a bad outing is expected.  He wasn't in Atlanta or Tampa Bay anymore.

"There is no rule a player has to talk to the media," said Girardi.  "There are times players need to blow off steam."

Girardi knows what it like to answer questions after a tough loss.  "We've all been there" he said.  "There are days when I'd not like to come in here, as well, but I'm not allowed to do that."

Blowing off steam is one thing , but the woman who birthed you?

The conversation with his mom would have probably gone like this:

"My little Raffy, did those boys bother you?"

"I don't wanna be here."

"Don't let those Twins boys bother you."

"They're mean."

"Now you just go and make friends with those nice reporter kids"

"I don't wanna."

" Raffy, do it for your mother...and watch your language."


Yankees GM Brian Cashman had almost the same motherly advice.

"He's new to this market, so like everything else, you live and learn," he said of the Yankees $35 million set-up man.  "We have to bang out some kinks and that was one."

Soriano learned a tough New York lesson. Face the music--even if it means standing your ground in front of your locker after a good or bad performance.  Nick Swisher, Boone Logan and Dave Robertson took their lumps after they contributed to Tuesday night's debacle.

Girardi said none of the players addressed Soriano's situation personally and Soriano now understands he has to be accountable; so it looks like water under the bridge.

The greater concern to the Yankees is Soriano's horrible performance--2/3 inning, 3 walks and allowing one hit and four runs--that ruined a seven-inning gem by Sabathia.

The next time Soriano hears a certain phone ringing, it will be in the bullpen from the Yankees dugout.  Here's hoping the "eighth-inning guy" answers that call.

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