Julian Tavarez, coming into this season, has been a Freddy Lima type hurler – meaning he looks like Freddy Krueger, acts like Jose Lima, and pitches like some hybrid of the two. Basically, he’s only on the Red Sox because Manny Ramirez wanted a puppy. There’s no excuse for being shut down by him…therefore, the Yankees offensive performance this evening (against Boston and Tavarez) is inexcusable.
And, as much as I want to say “I told you so” and point to Mussina’s oreo performance tonight – crunchy start, sweet middle, crunchy end – and blame Moose’s hits and runs allowed for this loss, at the end of the day, it was the Yankees weak bats against a weak pitcher which makes Mussina’s failure today a moot item. (And, yes, I know about the blown call in the seventh on the Crisp steal. Sorry, that doesn’t give Moose a pass for allowing all those hits in this game.)
This loss sets-up an interesting match-up tomorrow. Will Curt Schilling win and put a huge nail in the Yankees hopes to get into the A.L. East race? Or, will Andy Pettitte perform CPR for the Yankees and allow New York to prove that their overall streak of poor play in 2007 is coming to an end?
Five days ago, I made the following prediction: “If, at the close of business on May 23rd, the Yankees are 13.5 games out of first (or greater), there will be an organizational meeting in Tampa on May 24th and Joe Girardi will be managing the Yankees on May 25th.”
A loss tomorrow would put the Yankees 11.5 games back of Boston at the close of business on May 23rd. As such, I do not think a loss tomorrow will cost Joe Torre his job. However, if the Yankees lose tomorrow and then split their next 6 games, or worse, you still might see that organizational meeting – just a week later (being held on May 31st).
The Yankees play Boston again on June 1st – in Fenway for three games – including a FOX game on Saturday and an ESPN game on Sunday. I would have to think that Big Stein would want the ship to be right by then – or have a new skipper at the wheel (if Team Torre has another bad week).
It’s a good thing Andy Pettitte has broad shoulders. There’s a lot riding on them tomorrow. Of course, if the Yankees bats pull another no-show, even Pettitte may not matter.