• May 31st @ The Tigers

    Posted by on May 31st, 2006 · Comments (9)

    Mussina screaming from the mound to Torre, as Joe started out of the dugout, with 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th: “No, stay there!

    I love it.

    Moose was the man tonight. Pefect timing too – when the pen needed the rest. Must be something about Mussina and Motown – one year and a week ago, he did it to them as well.

    Gold star to Andy Phillips for his play on the bunt to nail the runner at 3rd in the 6th (when the score was only 2-0 Yanks). That could have been the turning point in the game.

    Tonight was a great ending to a very nice month for the Yankees.

    May 30th @ The Tigers

    Posted by on May 30th, 2006 · Comments (9)

    OK, as annoying as that Yankees fan sitting on top of the field microphone (during the YES broadcast) was all night – “Come number one-two!” (etc.) – I must admit that I found his shrieks of joy pretty amusing when Giambi finally hit that homerun.

    Considering that this game was starting to get that “2004 ALCS Games 4 & 5″ bad feel to it, hanging in there to get the win back was pretty important. And, with the Tigers having two good pitchers go in the next two games, it could have been a disaster to lose this game (after being up 5-0).

    And, clearly, a gold star for Mo Rivera tonight.

    And, now, for something entirely different………

    A woman nuts over Elvis decides that she wants a tattoo of the legend’s head on her inner thigh – and she went to a tattoo joint to get it done.

    When the tattoo artist was done with her, she looks at the tattoo and freaks – saying “That’s not Elvis and I’m not going to pay for this!”

    After long debate, the tattoo artist agreed to do another tattoo of Elvis’ head on her other inner thigh. But, when he was done, the woman flipped out again saying “That’s not Elvis either!”

    So, the tattoo artist said to her “Let’s get a third opinion” and he pulled in a guy who was in his waiting room. And, he asked the guy “Who does this look like?” (while pointing to the tattoo heads on the woman’s exposed legs).

    After staring at the woman’s legs for a long time, the guy said, “I don’t know who the guys on either side are, but the one in the middle is definitely Fernando Rodney.”

    May 29th @ The Tigers

    Posted by on May 29th, 2006 · Comments (0)

    Today was, by far, the best game that Randy Johnson has pitched this month. And, considering that 7 of his last 8 starts (prior to today) have been uber-duds, today’s effort is very nice to see.

    Seeing today’s results, I can’t help but wonder if John Flaherty’s findings had anything to do with it?

    It would have been cool to see a no-hitter today. I was having some Righetti flashbacks around the 5th inning. This, from the AP after the game was interesting:

    Ivan Rodriguez broke up Johnson’s bid for his third no-hitter — and second against the Tigers — with a single to right.

    “I couldn’t have cared less,” Johnson said. “If I had a perfect game, I would’ve come out after seven innings.”

    Somehow, I find that very hard to believe.

    In any event, now I’m looking forward to seeing Johnson’s next start.

    Lastly, is Ron Villone the new Mike Stanton? I know that he’s been doing well. But, I still worry about him against a RH batter in a big spot.

    May 28th vs. The Royals

    Posted by on May 28th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    This one was too close for comfort. But, at least the Yankees won.

    It’s now official. The clock has struck midnight for Scott Proctor. In his last 4 appearances, he’s allowed 8 hits, 2 walks, and 8 earned runs – in just 3.2 innings pitched. He’s now back to the point where he cannot be trusted. Too bad, it’s probably Torre’s fault for burning him out in just two month’s time.

    In Spring Training, if I would have asked you “Which pitcher would be more useful in the month of May, Randy Johnson or Jaret Wright?” – what would you have said? This entire month – Wright has not had a bad start. He’s been a big part of a good month for this team. Go figure.

    And, now, the Tigers. Yes, they’re playing .700 ball so far this season. But, they’ve beat up on the Royals and Twins to get that record. (If I counted right, the Tigers are 15-2 against K.C. and Minny so far this year.) The Yankees better take three of four in this next series.

    On a personal note, I saw X-Men: The Last Stand today. If you were a fan of the last two X-Men movies, don’t let the reviews scare you off this one. It’s fine. And, with all the action and CGI/FX stuff, you’ll want to see it on the big screen.

    May 27th vs. The Royals

    Posted by on May 27th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    After the first game of this series, I wrote:

    The Yankees better smoke the Royals over the next two games. Then it might make up for the loss in this game.

    After today’s game, I can now write: OK, that’s one!

    Yes, A-Rod hit two bombs today. And, Cairo and Stinnett did well. (On the latter, just goes to show what I know.) But, the thing that I’m really grooving on now is Melky Cabrera. He went two for four with 3 RBI today – and has now hit in 8 of his last 9 games.

    To borrow from the old band The Church, here goes:

    Sometimes your best plans come up empty
    Hope from the bench fades with the light
    Forget last year’s act of rush desperation
    Under the Melky Way is right

    At this point, when it comes to Cabrera, I only have three wishes:

    1. He keeps doing what he’s doing.
    2. That the Yankees keep him and play him.
    3. That he gets a better number than # 28. That’s not a star’s number. Maybe # 24?

    There’s no need to trade for a LF this season or get a RF for next season. Cabrera is proving that he can fill both needs.

    May 26th vs. The Royals

    Posted by on May 27th, 2006 · Comments (10)

    I have to pin this one on Farnsworth.

    It’s the 8th inning. Game tied at four. You’re playing at home – and it’s May 26th – against a team that was won just two games on the road all year. You’ve got a runner on 1st with two outs. The batters due up are Tony Graffanino and Angel Berroa (both hitting under .250 on the season).

    And, you allow a walk and a homer. Now the score is 7-4, Royals, after seven and a half innings. At this point, the probability of the Yankees winning this game drops like a lead balloon.

    Congrats to Derek for career hit # 2000. Great job by the fans for giving him his due.

    The Yankees better smoke the Royals over the next two games. Then it might make up for the loss in this game.

    May 24th @ The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 24th, 2006 · Comments (7)

    When the Yankees lost this past Monday to Boston, I wrote:

    I expect the Red Sox to go on and sweep this series.

    At the time, I truly believed that – and that’s why I wrote it. Now, I must say that I am sincerely impressed with the way the Yankees played the last two days. It would have been easy to lay down, lose yesterday and today, and then just apply excuses as fault and make promises for the future. Instead, the Yankees showed – at least me – something. This team has some fight in them.

    So, does Torre batting Melky Cabrera lead-off mean that the kid’s ability to work pitchers has now won him a spot in his manager’s heart? I hope so.

    OK, it’s 8-6 Yanks, bottom of the 8th, bases juiced with 2 outs, and Big Papi is facing The Farns.

    Well, I’m glad that someone was listening to my point from Monday – change speeds on Ortiz! What a beauty. Kyle Farnsworth drops a breaking pitch in for a called strike three and the inning is over. Grab some pine Papi.

    And, thank you Mo Rivera for sending Manny Ramirez skipping in the 9th inning during his At Bat. Finally, someone shows the team how to effectively pitch this guy. The minute you come close, he’s going to stop diving into the plate. (Remember his AB against Clemens in the 2003 ALCS game at Fenway?)

    As far as Randy Johnson, tonight he continued his trend that I pointed out earlier today.

    In the first, Youkilis singles on the 2nd pitch. Then Loretta singles on the first pitch. Manny homers on the 3rd pitch.

    In the third, Varitek singled on the 3rd pitch to drive in Manny.

    I missed the count on the Youkilis homer in the second, but, knowing what I know, I would bet that it was hit before Johnson threw his 4th pitch of the At Bat.

    Randy just needs to make better/smarter pitches early in the count – in order to turn this thing around.

    Lastly, it’s pretty cool to beat the Red Sox in Fenway. But, it’s wicked good to beat them in Fenway when the last out is recorded on a great play by Jeter (like in tonight’s game). And, for what it’s worth, I think it’s great that the schedule will now allow Jeter to get career hit # 2,000 at the Stadium. Sure, Fenway would have been good too. But, it will be a fitting reaction to such an event in the Bronx. Enjoy it Derek – you earned and deserve it.

    May 23rd @ The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 23rd, 2006 · Comments (24)

    OK, I have to confess. I picked up the game tonight in the 2nd inning – and then took a break to watch American Idol and House – later coming back to the game when Mo was facing Ortiz in the 8th (and then I watched from there unitl the end).

    So, I had to see a lot of the action via the post-game highlights (as I missed the 1st inning and most of the 4th through the 8th).

    The guys on YES might have said something (which I missed), but, man, Doug Mirabelli must be made to pay for that attempt to take out Jeter on the DP in the 6th inning. I only caught it in the flash-summary at the end of the game. Nonetheless, Mirabelli went a good 9 feet away from the bag to try and get Derek. Next time he bats against the Yankees, he deserves a shot on the elbow.

    OK, on to bigger things. Is Jaret Wright building something now, or what? Yes, the “Did I pop it up?” homer by A-Rod was a big hit. And, yes, Mo cleaning up for Proctor, Myers and Farnsworth – going 5 outs for the save – was huge. And, yep, Damon and Jeter set a heckuva table tonight – which really helped.

    But, this game, to me, was all about Wright. He got the game to the bottom of the 6th, with the Yankees winning 4-0. At that point, all the Yankees needed was 12 outs to win the game. If Wright can do that every start, meaning get the team to a point where they have a 4-run lead and needing 12 more outs to win, he’s going to be a big part of this team.

    In my mind, coming into this game, the odds were not in the Yankees favor. Getting a win, despite the odds, is very uplifting. I hope New York can ride this into something positive tomorrow.

    Lastly, am I the only one, every time that the Sox’ Mark Loretta comes to bat, who hears the voice of Nick Tortelli saying “And, this is my wife. The lovely Lo-ret-ta.”?

    May 22nd @ The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 22nd, 2006 · Comments (20)

    When you factor in Schilling’s recent issues, the Yankees having Wang on the mound, Wakefield pitching for the Sox tomorrow, and Randy Johnson pitching for the Yankees on Wednesday, tonight was the Yankees best shot at a win (during this series at Fenway).

    So, despite the nice little two-out rally in the 9th this evening, this was not a good game for the Yankees. And, I expect the Red Sox to go on and sweep this series.

    When that happens, what will it mean?

    Think about it – losing two of three to the Mets where you could have won all three games and then going into Fenway Park to get swept.

    Yes, it’s only two months into the season. But, losing badly to either the Mets or Red Sox is a Big Stein hot button. Doing it in back-to-back series is a really big and hot button for Stein.

    Sure, even George must realize that the Yankees are not at full strength now. (Up until tonight, did you ever think the Yankees would be playing Terrence Long in LF, Bernie Williams in CF and Melky Cabrera in RF against the Red Sox and Curt Schilling at Fenway Park this year?)

    Nonetheless, Big Stein will want to mix things up somehow – to try and spark the team. But what?

    He cannot fire the hitting coach – ever. Would he fire the pitching coach? That’s highly doubtful. Same goes for the rest of the coaching staff.

    How about Brian Cashman? Has Stein ever let a G.M. go during the season?

    There’s no one to trade from the starting nine, the rotation or the pen. They’re either too stinky to trade, make too much, or are pieces that you don’t want to move.

    There’s really only one piece to this puzzle that can be touched that would really shake up the team. But, I cannot see that happening just for losing 5 or 6 to the Mets and Sox. However, if the losing carries into the series after the Red Sox (when the Royals come to town), then I think it’s going to get very hot for Mr. Torre. Stay tuned.

    Paging Mr. Piniella.
    Mr. Lou Piniella.
    There’s a call for you at the front desk.

    May 21st @ The Mets

    Posted by on May 21st, 2006 · Comments (13)

    Today, on May 21, twenty-one Yankees reached base and only 3 scored. I guess they never heard of “get ‘em on, get ‘em over, and get ‘em in”?

    I’m really not sure what to make of this series. On one hand, I want to say that the Yankees were lucky (with the miracle of yesterday) not to get swept – and, that’s at least something. On the other hand, I want to say that the Yankees should have won all three of these games – with a little better pitching in the first game and a little better hitting in the game tonight. And, that’s the stuff to keep you up at night.

    What probably bugs me the most now is knowing that many Mets fans will be lined-up and waiting for me at work tomorrow morning – forgetting the fact that all three games in this series were one-run affairs that could have gone either way – and those Met-heads will be ready to tell me about how great the Mets are now and how lousy the Yankees are this year.

    All I want to know is this: When I look at the Mets today, I see Glavine, Pedro, Wagner, Delgado, Floyd and Beltran – all big Free Agent signings sans Delgado who was a huge salary grab by the Mets (because the Marlins needed to dump his huge contract). So, if the Mets do win “it” this year, are we allowed to say “They bought it!” (just like Yankees fans have had to hear each time the Yanks won)?

    I’m guessing, since we didn’t hear it about the Red Sox (that much) in 2004, when they bought Schilling, Foulke, Manny, and Damon (among others), that we won’t hear it about the Mets this year (should they win).

    Well, regardless if we hear it or not, it’s the truth. And, if need be, I’m going to “Edith Ann” it as much as I can – with the hope that at least some people get it.

    May 20th @ The Mets

    Posted by on May 20th, 2006 · Comments (5)

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    Well, today certainly takes away from the sting of yesterday.

    And, how great was it to see Rivera breaking bats and whiffing batters in the 11th? I think he has figured it out – whatever it was that’s been bothering him in the prior eight games.

    On a personal note, this morning, my daughter (who will be four next month), had her very first T-ball practice this morning.

    All together, it’s not been a bad day for this Yankees-fan dad. Not bad at all.

    May 19th @ The Mets

    Posted by on May 19th, 2006 · Comments (13)

    Oh, how far we’ve come from the days of O’Neill and Rojas.

    As much as the question of this evening seems to be (still) “What’s wrong with Randy Johnson?” perhaps it should now be “What’s wrong with Mo Rivera?”

    Over the span of the last 15 days, Rivera has pitched in 8 games now. In those 8 games, he has thrown 8 innings – in which he has allowed 12 hits, 3 walks and only whiffed 2 batters.

    That’s almost 2 base runners per inning pitched – and, if I’m doing my math right, only 2 punch-outs in 39 batters faced.

    I know that the Yankees and YES-heads are saying that this is Mariano being rusty because of the lack of save chances so far this season – but, come on, how can you be rusty when you’ve come into games 8 times in the last 15 days? Something is wrong with Mo.

    As far as Johnson, at this point, it’s just a shame that his name is “Randy Johnson.” The way he’s been pitching, if his name was “Jaret Wright” he would have been removed from the rotation by now. Heck, if his name was “Scott Proctor” and he was pitching this way, he would be in the minors by now.

    It’s interesting, I’m reading Birth of a Dynasty now and I just came across a quote from Torre where he says (something like) “I manage by the game and not by the name” (where a reference was made to him having Charlie Hayes pinch hit for Wade Boggs, if I recall correctly).

    I wish this were still true about Joe. Granted, you could never send “Randy Johnson” down to Columbus to work out his problems now – because he’s “Randy Johnson.” But, given that (in his last 7 starts) he’s allowed 31 runs in 36.2 innings pitched, it’s time either remove him from the rotation or put him on the Disabled List.

    Let Ron Villone start in his place and make Johnson pitch mop-up to work out his issues. Or, disable him and send him to Tampa to work things out.

    I just read that Johnson has allowed four runs or more in five straight starts for the first time in his major league career. Something is wrong. And, running him out there every five days doesn’t seem to be the answer. It’s time for Plan B.

    Semi-related to all this, tonight’s news also tells us that Carl Pavano needs surgery to remove a bone chip above his right elbow. I have to wonder – did this chip just show up, or, was it hiding from Yankees doctors for the last 325 days? If it’s the latter, could it be possible that the same crack-staff of M.D.’s have missed something on Randy?

    At the least, if they won’t move Johnson to the pen, get another MRI. Shoot, do a full body scan – and a head x-ray while you’re at it. And then get him on the D.L.

    And, then they can move on to trying to fix Rivera.

    May 18th vs. The Rangers

    Posted by on May 18th, 2006 · Comments (5)

    So, the Yankees lost 2 of 4 to the Rangers in the same fashion – wasting a good effort from their starter, weak batting, making an error at the wrong time, and with so-so bullpen support. This is bothersome considering that this was a chance to build some padding before the Mets and Red Sox games.

    With Bubba hurting his hammy today, and no DH in the NL, the next three games at Shea are going to be interesting (in terms of defense) with a banged up Damon in CF – with Bernie and Melky at his sides. Throw in Giambi at 1B and the recent increased shakiness of Jeter and Cano, and, well, let’s just say that Johnson, Mussina and whoever starts on Sunday better have their A-games going.

    At this moment, it’s reached the point where, if you told me now that the Yankees will be 2 games out of first place on May 25th, I would say “Where do I sign?”

    May 17th vs. The Rangers

    Posted by on May 17th, 2006 · Comments (4)

    To be honest, one of the things that I always loved about Andy Pettitte, whether he was pitching well or not, was that he was a pick-off freak. By this, I mean, he was the best in baseball in terms of owning a lethal move to first.

    There’s just something about that for me – when a guy has an element of his game where he is “The Best” and he can do “it” at any time (and no one can prevent it). I really dig juggernaut skills.

    In his prime, Rickey Henderson had this too – he was going to steal when he felt like it – and he knew, they knew, we all knew that they could not stop him.

    Chien-Ming Wang is now there for me as well – because he is an absolute ground-ball freak. I love to watch him pitch just to see all those grounders. I’m not sure if the stats point to someone else – and I really don’t care, to be honest – because my eyes tell me and my heart believes it – there’s no one better in the game now at getting ground-ball after ground-ball.

    And, no one can stop him.

    Mr. Wang-der-full, the Grounder King, having it his way. Long live the king!

    May 16th vs. The Rangers

    Posted by on May 17th, 2006 · Comments (8)

    516parking.jpg

    Early on, I was given a clue that tonight was going to be a special night – but, I missed it.

    I left my office in Little Falls, NJ at 4:30 pm to head to this game – and at 5:10 pm I pulled into one of the parking lots at the Stadium. Forty minutes, door-to-door?

    That just does not happen. It had to be magic.

    To the game……

    After one and a half, the Yankees were down 9-0. That was a bummer.

    Still, since I was attending the game with Alex Belth of Bronx Banter fame, it wasn’t a total bummer – as Alex and I were passing the time talking about the Yankees, blogging, and all sorts of fun stuff. (By the way, every Yankees fan should have the pleasure of attending at least one game with Alex. He’s a great guy with some incredible stories to share.)

    After a while, and some Aaron Small luck, it’s the top of the 6th and the score is 10-5 in favor of Texas. It’s still not a great position – but, it’s looking much more like a ballgame than 9-0.

    And, in the top of the 6th, when it looks like Texas will add to their lead, Jorge Posada blocks the plate like a brick wall on a throw from left field – saving a huge run.

    Then, more magic happens – the Yankees plate 6 in the 6th to take a 11-10 lead. Not too shabby, considering they were down 9-0 just 4 innings ago.

    But, back to Bummersville – Scott Proctor allows a moon-shot 2-run homer in the 7th giving Texas the lead again, 12-11.

    Then, magic again – the Yankees tie the game in the bottom of the 7th.

    Still, the unthinkable – with the score tied 12-12, Mariano Rivera allows a guy hitting .218 to drive in a run in the 9th and put Texas up 13-12.

    Down 9-0, leading 11-10, losing 12-11, tied 12-12, and now losing 13-12 (in the 9th). This is not an easy game for a Yankee fan’s heart.

    But, in the bottom of the 9th with 2 outs, Jorge Posada hits a homerun to win the game for the Yankees, 14-13. It’s time to high-five as many strangers as you can. And, this was without Giambi, Matsui and Sheffield in the line-up.

    Like I said before: That just does not happen. It had to be magic.

    I hope they put this one into the Yankees Classics rotation. I want to see this one again. In terms of being at “Great Games In the First Half Of A Season,” I had the pleasure to attend that July 1, 2004 game where Jeter dove into the stands, and, this game might just be as thrilling – if not greater. (Even with that 7/1/04 game being against Boston.)

    Heck, the Yankees have only come back from a 9-0 score three times, ever, before this one.

    For what it’s worth, in 2004, the Yankees went on to lose 5 of 6 after that big win. Let’s up the carry-over from this crazy win is more favorable.

    Come on magic, just stay around for a little while longer.

    May 15th vs. The Rangers

    Posted by on May 15th, 2006 · Comments (11)

    Life without Matsui so far:

    May 11th = 3 runs
    May 12th = 2 runs
    May 13th = 4 runs
    May 14th = 1 run
    May 15th = 2 runs

    That’s 2.4 runs per game for the Yankees, for those scoring at home.

    And, now Giambi has a sore neck – that will not allow him to turn his head. Torre said tonight that it’s not a major scare – but also said “we’ll see” in the morning after they run some tests on Jason.

    Imagine a line-up without Giambi, Sheffield, and Matsui. You might see it tomorrow. (Great, I have tickets for the game.)

    It’s a shame to waste the effort from Mussina tonight. Speaking of Moose, while he has been great this year, and it’s very appreciated, is anyone in Yankeeland somewhat ticked that it’s coming in the year where he’s probably playing for his next contract? Yes, supposedly Posada spotted that Mussina was tipping his change, and that’s the reason for the turnaround this season. But, is it a Yankees-fan-faux-pas to wonder about a possible salary push being the thing that’s motivating Moose? Then again, as long as he keeps pitching this great, who cares why, right?

    May 14th vs. The A’s

    Posted by on May 14th, 2006 · Comments (8)

    It’s still hard to say if today’s effort is a good sign for Randy Johnson. The A’s basically only have two good hitters in their line-up: Nick Swisher & Eric Chavez. And, Chavez wasn’t playing today. (No, I have not forgotten about Frank Thomas. He’s not really mashing this year, so, I’m not considering him as being good now. Plus, he’s out of the line-up anyway.)

    So, is Johnson back, or, is today’s performance more of a reflection of the A’s offense?

    What really bothers me this year about Johnson, after his control issues, is that he’s giving up hits to LHB like Mark Kotsay (today), Adam Kennedy, and Shane Costa to allow runs to score (this season). When Johnson is well, these guys shouldn’t be able to touch the ball (much less get RBI hits).

    And, keep in mind, Johnson is giving up these hits to LHB in the games where he has pitched “well.”

    In any event, with the way that the Yankees hit today, it probably didn’t matter what Randy did on the mound. It’s hard to win when you only score one run.

    Probably the best part of the game today: Melky Cabrera’s peg to the plate in the 8th. This kid can do some things.

    May 13th vs. The A’s

    Posted by on May 13th, 2006 · Comments (10)

    You know, Big Stein calls out A-Rod, and then Rodriguez starts launching bombs in just about every game. That Georgie, he’s a genius, no? The homer that Alex hit today was Hobbsian (to say the least).

    At this rate, Everyday Scottie Proctor is going to appear in 76 games this season and throw 116 IP. Does Torre realize that he’s going to cook this kid’s arm?

    Now, part of the problem, to me, has been Tanyon Sturtze – in the sense that he’s been a mess and that led to the need to call on Proctor more often.

    I see now that Sturtze was placed on the 15-day disabled list after the game because of soreness in his pitching shoulder. And, the Yanks purchased the contract of Scott Erickson from Columbus.

    I don’t get the Erickson choice at all. He’s allowed 22 base runners in 17 IP in Triple-A and has an ERA of 4.24. That’s the best replacement available right now?

    Lastly, note that the Yankees have now won 10 of their last 13 games. That’s the great news. The bad news is that those three losses all came from the Boston Red Sox.

    May 12th vs. The A’s

    Posted by on May 12th, 2006 · Comments (8)

    Simply Wang-der-full.

    And, it could have not come at a better time. Nice and quick game too – compared to last night’s 4-hour root canal session.

    Was it just me, or, was it fun to see our ol’ pal Funny Face Keisler again?

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    May 11th vs. The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 11th, 2006 · Comments (17)

    If I had to guess right now, at this moment, I would say that Matsui is going to miss 6 to 8 weeks with his broken left wrist. That seems to be the timetable for baseball players with these things. (That’s what they said when Jeremy Reed and Derrek Lee broke their wrists.)

    Back on February 26th, I wondered what would happen if Godzilla or Sheffield went down for an extended period. Now, with both out, it’s even more scary.

    It probably means a lot more PA for Bubba Crosby and Bernie Williams – knowing Torre. That’s like spotting the other team 2 free innings in a game – because you know that Bubba & Bernie are a lock for 6 easy outs per game (combined).

    I would much rather see New York call up Kevin Thompson – and then play him in LF and Melky Cabrera in RF. And, just leave them alone.

    Regarding the game today, Jim Kaat said it best on the YES coverage: Whoever wins this game will be happy to get the win and whoever will lose the game will regret all the chances that they had to win it.

    So many Yankees looked like they were playing hung over tonight. (And, for what it’s worth, I don’t believe what Giambi said to Kay – when asked why he showed up at the park in the same clothes as yesterday. Superstitious? Yeah, sure. Sounds more like a “I hit a HR against the Red Sox” night out on the town.)

    Bottom line, now, with Sheffield and Matsui out, it’s time for Damon to start hitting better – and for guys like Giambi and A-Rod to be on their game everyday. (And, Jeter, Cano and Posada can just keep doing what they’re doing.) Otherwise, we’re going to start seeing more and more games where the Yankees only score three runs.

    May 10th vs. The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 10th, 2006 · Comments (3)

    Back in October 2004, Curt Schilling said:

    “I’m not sure of any scenario more enjoyable than making 55,000 people from New York shut up.”

    Watching the game this evening, I want to now personally counter that statement with:

    “I’m not sure of many scenarios more enjoyable than seeing Curt Schilling, knocked out of a ballgame, sitting on the bench holding his head in his hands.”

    Tonight was all about Mussina and Schilling for me – specifically how they performed after a homerun. Mussina could have had a meltdown after the Lowell homer. Instead, he sucked it up and did a great job. On the other hand, Schilling had a meltdown after A-Rod launched his moon-shot off him. That was the difference in this game.

    The whole thing allows me to forget the fact that the Yankees still can’t get David Ortiz out – at least for a night.

    And, it makes me wonder: When Red Sox fans look at Schilling’s first four starts of the season and his last four starts, are they questioning him now the way that some Yankees fans are questioning Randy Johnson? Maybe they should, no? And, is it time yet to admit that maybe he did himself in this season with that game against the Indians?

    May 9th vs. The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 9th, 2006 · Comments (11)

    On stage in the Bronx tonight, a special One-Act comedy, for your perusal. Without further delay, here’s the show…..

    Thor, the Norse God of Thunder, decides to spend a weekend with a stripper in Vegas, posing as a average man.

    Once together, they end up doing the wild thing for 40 hours straight, just about non-stop.

    Afterwards, he felt he should honor the mortal by letting her know who he was.

    I’m Thor!” he proclaimed.

    To which she answered him with:

    You’re Thor?!? I’m so thor I can hardly pith!”

    In this evening’s performance, the role of Thor, the Norse God of Thunder, was played by the Boston Red Sox. And, the role of the stripper was played by the New York Yankees. Thank you for attending today’s program and please remember to drive home safely.

    May 7th @ The Rangers

    Posted by on May 7th, 2006 · Comments (9)

    Three days ago, I wrote:

    …Texas (coming up next) should now be a good test for New York. It’s been 25 days since the Yankees last played a good team on the road for more than two games in a row. It will be interesting to see how the team responds to that type of challenge at this stage in their season.

    Well, that was easy, huh? I would say that the Yankees passed with flying colors………..except for our friend, Sturtze Hurtzie.

    If you look at his pitching log, ol’ T.S. has not had a quality outing in any close Yankees win this season. If anything, that attempt for the DP today, where he almost got Jeter killed, is reason enough for a trip to Columbus.

    He’s got to be the pitcher who goes when they activate Pavano.

    May 6th @ The Rangers

    Posted by on May 6th, 2006 · Comments (5)

    Looks like getting back to Texas is agreeing with A-Rod.

    It also looks like Shawn Chacon (based on his last four starts) may still have some of that magic left over from last year.

    And, this is crazy, and I never thought I would ever type these words in 2006, but, here goes: I hope Torre doesn’t burn out Scott Proctor by using him so much in the last 4 weeks.

    On a personal note, I ended up listening to most of the game tonight on the radio, driving back from the North Shore Animal League. It’s a long ride going from Long Island, through Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island, back to New Jersey. But, it was worth it – as we now have a new member of the family:

    spencer.jpg

    His name is Spencer. No, not after Shane. My daughter (age 4) decided to name him after a train from Thomas the Tank Engine. He’s 10 weeks old – and some sort of lab mix.

    Now, I just have to get our 9-year-old Terrier-Pit mix to warm up to him. So far, she’s not quite sure what to make of the situation.

    But, if Torre can now learn that Proctor is better than Tanyon Sturtze, then all things are possible.

    May 5th @ The Rangers

    Posted by on May 5th, 2006 · Comments (5)

    Holy Fratzog Ammunition Batman!

    Yes, tonight, the Yankees dodged a bullet.

    Just like Torre reportedly told Randy Johnson after yesterday’s game, I will say it as well tonight: You should never feel bad about a game that you won.

    I just hope that Aaron Small is OK. He looked catatonic sitting in the dugout after he came out of the game.

    May 4th @ The Devil Rays

    Posted by on May 4th, 2006 · Comments (3)

    You know, one year ago, to the day, the Yankees were playing in Tampa (like tonight). Sean Henn got roughed up that night and the Yankees record fell to 11-17.

    Slammin’ Johnny Damon, what a difference a year makes.

    Still, Texas (coming up next) should now be a good test for New York. It’s been 25 days since the Yankees last played a good team on the road for more than two games in a row. It will be interesting to see how the team responds to that type of challenge at this stage in their season.

    May 3rd @ The Devil Rays

    Posted by on May 3rd, 2006 · Comments (7)

    Part of me wants to salute Jaret Wright for 6 very nice innings tonight. But, then, part of me wants to say “Check out the batting averages for the batters that he faced this evening” -

    Gathright .203
    Crawford .260
    Gomes .280
    Wigginton .260
    Hall .325
    Lee .200
    Hollins .269
    Burroughs .190
    Perez .190

    Basically, there were just 5 batters to be somewhat concerned about in the Rays’ line-up today.

    Part of me wants to celebrate that rally for New York in the 10th – and the big hit for A-Rod. But, then, part of me wants to say that the Tampa pitchers in that inning were a guy (Tyler Walker) who has already blown 3 of 4 save chances this year and a rookie (Ruddy Lugo) who has allowed runs in his last 4 appearances (before tonight).

    Perhaps the bigger point about that 10th inning is how the Yankees only scored two runs – when they had runners on 1st and 2nd with just one out (after getting the two runs on the board).

    In any event, the important thing (today) in the end is the “W” – coupled with Beckett & Papelbon getting banged around in Fenway – which puts the Yankees back in 1st place.

    Methods are tools, but, results rule.

    May 1st @ The Red Sox

    Posted by on May 1st, 2006 · Comments (13)

    Two points and a question.

    First Point:

    If Richard Edson and The Crusher – see below:

    EdsonCrusher.jpg

    …..had a baby, it would look just like Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis (see below).

    youkilis.jpg

    Second Point:

    If the three seasons prior to this year were not enough proof, this evening is the clinching evidence that there is a greater probability of someone confusing Kevin Youkilis for Angelina Jolie than there is a chance for any Yankees pitcher to make David Ortiz move his feet while standing in the batter’s box.

    The Question:

    (And, no, it’s not When will the Yankees make Ortiz move his feet? – because we now know the answer is never.)

    If Scott Proctor is now good enough to face Manny Ramirez and Trot Nixon in a huge spot, then why is he not good enough to face Mark Loretta in an even bigger spot? Why, in the name of sanity, use Tanyon Sturtze when the game is on the line? Why?