• June 24th @ The Pirates

    Posted by on June 24th, 2008 · Comments (12)

    This was the first time that the Yankees have ever played at PNC Park.

    What a beautiful ballpark. What a terrible game.

    Guess what? The Yankees now have to win the next two games in order to win this series. Yes, if the Yankees split the next two games, then they will have lost a series to the less than stellar Pittsburgh Pirates.

    Why would this be a big deal? Look at it this way: Assume the Yankees do go ahead now and split the next two games with the Buccos. This would put New York’s season W-L record at 42-37. But, more importantly, this would make the Yankees 30-37 this season against all teams not named the Mariners, Astros and Padres. And, with 79 games then under their belt (which is basically half the season), this then would be testament that the 2008 Yankees are not a very good baseball team. And, Yankees fans should then level set their expectations, accordingly.

    Of course, having Chamberlain and Mussina going for New York in their next two games (in Pittsburgh) should help their chances of winning both games. Then again…it also makes it worse if the Yankees end up losing one or both of these games as well.

    Lastly, some words on two of the Yankees pitchers this evening. Darrell Rasner has now allowed 21 ER in his last 27 IP. Has the clock struck midnight on him? It could be true. And, let’s be honest, LaTroy Hawkins should be given his walking papers before he leaves the clubhouse this evening. He may be a nice guy to have in the clubhouse, etc. But, he’s right up there with the likes of Juan Acevedo, Felix Heredia, and Felix Rodriguez in terms of recent and really stinky Yankees relief pitchers. Com’on Cash…cut the cord on this one already.

    Comments on June 24th @ The Pirates

    1. Joel
      June 25th, 2008 | 9:16 am

      ~And, with 79 games then under their belt (which is basically half the season), this then would be testament that the 2008 Yankees are not a very good baseball team. And, Yankees fans should then level set their expectations, accordingly~

      —-

      Sure they absolutely sucked last night, but the Wildcard and Division are still very attainable, Steve. My expectations are firmly set on a 14th consecutive post-season.

    2. asdf
      June 25th, 2008 | 9:30 am

      But, more importantly, this would make the Red Sox 32-30 this season against all teams not named the Tigers, Royals, Brewers and Rangers. And, with 79 games then under their belt (which is basically half the season), this then would be testament that the 2008 Red Sox are around a .500 baseball team. And, Sox fans should then level set their expectations, accordingly.

    3. June 25th, 2008 | 9:31 am

      So, since the Red Sox are so-so, it’s OK that the Yankees are playing like crap too?

    4. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      June 25th, 2008 | 10:10 am

      Cumulative winning percentage of Tigers, Royals, Brewers and Rangers: .495
      Cumulative winning percentage of Mariners, Astros, Padres: .413

      Uh, you might want to find some other reason to drag the Red Sox down to the Yankees current level.

    5. Raf
      June 25th, 2008 | 10:24 am

      So, since the Red Sox are so-so, it’s OK that the Yankees are playing like crap too?
      ———-
      No, but it puts things in context, that the rest of the league is doing so-so.

    6. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      June 25th, 2008 | 10:55 am

      So, since the Red Sox are so-so, it’s OK that the Yankees are playing like crap too?
      ———-
      No, but it puts things in context, that the rest of the league is doing so-so.

      Except that I’ve put the lie to the assertion that the Red Sox are so-so. The presumed “pansies” they’ve “gotten fat off of” are very nearly cumulatively .500. The true pansies, the teams the Yankees HAVE gotten fat off of, are a cumulative .413 and if not for the pathetic Nationals, would be the three worst teams in the majors.

    7. June 25th, 2008 | 11:09 am

      ~~Cumulative winning percentage of Tigers, Royals, Brewers and Rangers: .495
      Cumulative winning percentage of Mariners, Astros, Padres: .413~~

      Excellent point.

    8. Raf
      June 25th, 2008 | 12:38 pm

      Ok, let’s look at it this way; if the Sox are doing so well, if they’re that much better, why haven’t they put the division away?

    9. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      June 25th, 2008 | 1:25 pm

      Ok, let’s look at it this way; if the Sox are doing so well, if they’re that much better, why haven’t they put the division away?

      _______________________________________

      Well this seems like the question for me. ;)

      A few reasons come to mind:
      The bullpen hasn’t been as good as last year. Okajima in particular has been terrible with inherited runners and recently just plain terrible. I don’t think its a matter of the league figuring him out, but rather just bouts of poor command. When he executes the Oka-Doke, it still gets bad flailing swings. But that’s one aspect, along with some other inconsistencies, like DelCarmen. He’ sort of our Veras – when he is on, he can make a lot of people look bad but he’s had games when he was pretty bad. Like Veras, the recent trend is good, though.

      The second factor I’d state would be the strength of the division – until recently, everyone was at .500 or better – and particularly the strength of the Rays. That team is NOT going away, folks! They’ve got much better pitching and defense than in the past, and that doesn’t slump. So I think the Sox could be in much better shape if the Rays weren’t as good.

      Final factor would be starting pitching and particularly Beckett’s early season problems. He hasn’t dominated from the get-go like last year, but on the plus side, he looks very much like he’s rounding into form.

      But for the Sox to solidify their position on top of the division and hold it to the end, they need help in the bullpen. Depending on Buchholz and Colon, that may come from Masterson going into the pen around August or so. Otherwise Theo needs to make a deal.

    10. Andy
      June 25th, 2008 | 1:44 pm

      “So I think the Sox could be in much better shape if the Rays weren’t as good.”

      Would you explain that? I don’t understand how the rays have that much effect – last year, the sox were 13-5 vs the rays; so far this year, they’re 6-3.

    11. OnceIWasAYankeeFan
      June 25th, 2008 | 5:18 pm

      Sure. It isn’t just head to head that makes a difference. Its the fact that the Rays are so much better than last year (I think that two weeks ago they had more wins than they had ever previously had at the ASB!). So if a team that is in second place keeps winning, its kind of tough to get any distance between you and them unless you somehow manage to win at a significantly greater clip, which obviously they have not. The Sox are around a .600 winning percentage, and the Rays stay right there with them.

    12. Don
      June 25th, 2008 | 6:28 pm

      How many games do the Yankees have vs. the Angels this season, I read on RLYW it is ten (10)? And how many will they win against their bete noir?

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