How better to mark the 60th anniversary of the hatching of New York’s Number One than by having him shadowed for a full day by Newsday’s Neil Best? Though it doesn’t seem like a great deal for Neil, here’s some excerpts from the longer conversation they couldn’t squeeze into the Sunday edition of the paper :
On his convoluted explanation for not recognizing the name of Tigers pitcher Al Alburquerque during the 2011 ALDS:
“What I don’t like is these guys play ‘gotcha.’ I’m on there six hours a day. I hear guys make mistakes on stuff like they don’t know the name of a head coach of a team or don’t know who is running a union or a commissioner. I have to know everything about everything on every team at all times.
“That is an obscure relief pitcher. But you know what? I didn’t handle that Alburquerque thing well. I didn’t. That is me getting mad at me. It’s my job to not make those mistakes. I make so few compared to other people and I’m on so much longer and cover so much more stuff than people, but I know I’m going to be and should be held to a higher standard. I’m supposed to be the standard. I understand that.
“I have the biggest show and get paid the most money. I expect that. But I expect it from myself more. I was more upset with me on that than anybody else. If I do something like that I’m mad at myself and say to myself, you know what, I didn’t work hard enough. I always work really hard.”