New York Yankees: Jorge Posada's Time with Yankees Coming to a Close

michael eisnerCorrespondent IAugust 8, 2011

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 26:  Head trainer Gene Monahan of the New York Yankees is met by Jorge Posada #20 during a retirement ceremony before the New York Yankees 65th Old Timers Day game on June 26, 2011 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

I must admit - I've never been a big fan of Jorge Posada, despite my ironclad allegiance to the New York Yankees.

This dates back to an in-person meeting I had with him back in 1999, when his career was just starting to blossom. He was the most anti-cordial athlete I had met up to that point.

And, considering the fact that he was signing autographs with Orlando Hernandez, who ironically was quite friendly despite a language barrier the size of an Eric Gregg strike zone, it spawned my distaste for athletes who lived on the heels of super sized egos and inflated paychecks.

Don't get me wrong - Posada was a key component of four World Series Championships, but he was the least valuable of the "Core Four." Posada had a penchant for striking out. He was an average defender on his best day. Let's put it this way - he was no Thurman Munson.

And now, in what should have been his first year of retirement, he is making a mockery of what was once considered a valiant Yankees career. He is now an afterthtought. An almost 40-year old man desperately holding on for one more chance to be 25 again. I get it.

Like so many ballplayers who were superstars in the late 1990s and are still holding on for dear life - I get it. Guys like Todd Helton and Jason Varitek. Derek Jeter, of course. Jason Giambi.

Posada has had a difficult life despite all the accolades and the big paychecks. His young son has been battling a debilitating disease and Posada has never been very well-liked by his hometown fans, at least not the way guys like Bernie Williams and Andy Pettitte and David Wells and Mariano Rivera were adored.

And, of course, Jeter, whose adulation is the stuff of legend.

It is a bittersweet time to be a Yankees fan. One door seems to be opening for a young catcher named Jesus Montero, while a door, which once seemed eternally open, seems to be closing quickly for Posada.

Fast forward 14 seasons since that magical 1998 season, I think that I finally have forgiven Posada for not acknowledging me while penning his autograph 13 years ago. Later in life, Posada turned out to be just like me.