John Harper of the Daily News wrote a profile piece on new catcher Brian McCann yesterday, and the comparison made between McCann and another former Yankee catcher was the standout quote of the article:
"'Mr. Steinbrenner told me the story the day we were in New York for the press conference,' Howie McCann, Brian’s father, was saying on Wednesday. 'He said everyone there agreed they needed a catcher, and then Gene Michael stood up and said, ‘We want McCann because he reminds me of Thurman Munson, he has that same demeanor, that same toughness.’"
Considering the long and storied history of Yankee catchers, being compared to Thurman Munson is about the highest compliment you can receive. Part of what people liked about the McCann signing was his reputation as a clubhouse leader and everything in Harper's article makes it sound like he's going to be a good one for this team. With guys like Andy and Mo retired, and with the current captain not far behind, the Yankee clubhouse is a little lighter on vocal leadership than it's been in years past. A modern day version of Munson behind the plate will go a long way in ensuring that the team's high standards don't slip as its last links to the most recent glory days move on.