George Steinbrenner suffered a massive heart attack
and died this morning.
Steinbrenner just turned 80 July 4th and dies two days after the death of Yankee institution Bob Sheppard,
And befitting a man who knew how to work the media, Steinbrenner passes on the morning of the All-Star Game, where his defending World Series champions will have pretty much a third of their team and coaching staff in uniform.
George was always about stealing headlines and making splashy entrances...or for his managers, blustery exits.
King George is gone now and it is not time to speak ill of the deceased. There are plenty of reasons to dislike Steinbrenner and we have spent many years in Loge13 itemizing his crimes against baseball.
But he did do some good things for players, especially ex-Mets like Dwight Gooden and Darryl Strawberry. And, whether you liked his style or not, he knew that to OWN a baseball team didn't just mean you had a controlling interest. It meant you sought control at all times. Control of players. Managers. General managers. Journalists. The Spankees have had their share of clubhouse and front-office follies (see the Bronx Zoo). But how often has Brian Cashman accused a reporter of wanting his job? How many Yankee VP's have taken off their shirts in minor league locker rooms and challenged a team to a brawl?
So like Shea Stadium and the old Yankee Stadium, a New York institution is no longer with us. An era has come to an end. And as Steinbrenner goes, will the Yankees winning ways follow?