Though not quite as stomach turning as apologizing to Yankee fans for losing to the Dodgers in the ’81 World Series, George Steinbrenner’s “we will do better” statement was condescending to the opposition and typically, disrespectful of his own charges. Pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre, with one foot out the door, takes exception. From the Associated Press :

Speaking in the Yankees clubhouse where he’s spent 21 seasons as a player and coach, Stottlemyre said he interpreted Steinbrenner’s statement following the Yankees’ elimination by the Los Angeles Angels as a slap at Torre. Steinbrenner said Tuesday: “I congratulate the Angels and their manager on the great job they’ve done.”

“I laughed when I saw it,” Stottlemyre said. “My first thoughts were, ‘What about Joe? Joe had done a hell of a job, too.’ To congratulate the other manager and not congratulate your own after what he’d done this year, I laughed.”

“I think it’s absolutely ridiculous,” he said. “I’ve been here with Joe for 10 years and this has by far been the toughest year for him, and it’s the best job he’s done. He’s done a good job year in and year out – this year the job he’s done was really special because he had a lot of things to battle through.”

The Astros have added RHP/former Round Rock fixture Ezquiel Astacio to their roster for the NLCS, with first pitch scheduled in about 2 hours time in St. Louis. OF Luke Scott, another budding Express starlet, was removed from the playoff roster.