Results tagged ‘ Curtis Granderson ’

We’re In!

Yanks are Officially in the Playoffs!!!

The Yankees were playing so badly that I thought they were on the verge of a catastrophic collapse. It was sickening…embarrassing…the team was dead. I remember them being 2 wins away – so close I could almost taste it – and yet I felt those 2 wins might have well been 200, because I didn’t think there was any way they could win the way they were playing. But that’s all over now. With just 3 games left to play, the Yankees are tied for first with those pesky Rays in the AL East. Homefield advantage would be nice, but I don’t really care about it as much as I did a few days ago. I’m just THRILLED that the Yankees are in the postseason! I think that if they win the ALDS, then they are going all the way. But I’m getting ahead of myself: I want to talk about how we clinched!

September 26, 2010. Yankees vs. Red Sox. A game I surely thought the Yankees would lose, especially because they were losing 1-0 in the 7th inning, having shown zero signs of life with the bat. But all that changed with 1 swing of the bat by The Drama King himself, Mr. Alex Rodriguez. His 2-run homer in the 7th gave the Yankees a new life, and their first lead of the night. They were ahead 2-1.

New York Yankees Alex Rodriguez hits a solo homer in the ninth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Yankee Stadium in New York City on September 25, 2010. The Red Sox defeated the Yankees 7-3.  UPI/John Angelillo Photo via Newscom

Just like last year, Alex is arguably the most important player for the Yanks.

I thought that would be enough for them to win…but Mariano Rivera was icky – VERY icky – in the 9th, allowing 2 runs and letting the Yankee lead slip away. 3-2 Red Sox. But in the bottom of the 9th, Robbie Cano singled sharply with the bases loaded, tying the game. For the first time in ages, the Yankees were showing fight. They weren’t done yet.

In the 10th, Curtis Granderson led off with a single and Brett Gardner laid down the perfect bunt for a single. For some reason, which still seems mindless to me, the Red Sox intentionally walked Derek Jeter, to LOAD THE BASES WITH NO ONE OUT. Why on earth would anyone do that? ESPECIALLY when the other team can get a walkoff? I don’t know.

Patience proved to be a virtue for my Yanks and Juan Miranda. His patience at the plate and great at-bat resulted in a walk – a WALKOFF WALK, and the Yankees won 4-3. Sadly, I didn’t see any pies fly. But that’s okay…I was just glad to see them win!

New York Yankees batter Juan Miranda tosses his bat after drawing a bases loaded walk to beat the Boston Red Sox in the tenth inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York September 26, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Thank you, Juan!!!

The Heroes for this Victory which brought the Yankees magic number down to 1 were Phil Hughes, for his starting effort, A-Rod, for that super-clutch homer, and Juan Miranda for the walkoff.

The clincher came on September 28 against the Blue Jays, and the Yankees couldn’t have had a better guy on the mound for a game of this importance. CC Sabathia was fabulous, throwing over 8 innings of 1-run ball.

CC was his usual C”Cy” self, but what impressed me most about this win was the offense: the Yankees built every one of their runs. A-Rod, Teixeira, and Cano had sac flies. A-Rod also had a bases loaded walk. Greg Golson had an RBI groundout. There were no home runs. Everything was built, and that’s good. In the postseason, the Yankees are going to have to be able to score like that if they want to win. And they do want to win. So they’ll have to.

The Yankees won this game 6-1, and had a little fun with the bubbly. Watching my boys run around pouring ice cold champagne on each other’s heads is enough to make me smile any day.

New York Yankees Derek Jeter is showered with beer in the clubhouse after beating the Toronto Blue Jays in their American League MLB baseball game in Toronto September 28, 2010. The win secured them a wildcard berth in the playoffs. REUTERS/Fred Thornhill (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

The Captain gets a taste.

 

New York Yankees Curtis Granderson celebrates in the clubhouse after beating the Toronto Blue Jays in their American League MLB baseball game in Toronto September 28, 2010. The win secured them a wild card berth in the playoffs.  REUTERS/Fred Thornhill (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 My Cutie-Curtis Granderson gets his first ever taste of postseason parties.

 

New York Yankees celebrate in the clubhouse after beating the Toronto Blue Jays in their American League MLB baseball game in Toronto September 28, 2010. The win secured them a wildcard berth in the playoffs.  REUTERS/Fred Thornhill (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 A bunch of my goofy boys ♥

I can’t decide how I think the Yankees will do in the postseason this year. Do I think they are as good as last year? I don’t know. There were a few bad stretches last year, and I guess I didn’t notice as much because the struggles weren’t right before the season’s end. This year’s struggles arrived at a more nerve-racking time.

Even so, I don’t think anyone, even myself, has the right to or should predict the Yankees postseason success. The postseason is a whole different animal. I enjoy it. But it also makes me a wreck – even when they win. I can’t take the pressure.

With that said, I’m going to enjoy these final three games of the regular season in 2010.

GO YANKEES!!!

New Life

Yanks Headed in Right Direction

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted, and it’s been awhile since the Yankees really looked good. The past few series have been hard to watch. After that 8-game winning streak, the Yankees just fell apart: They lost 2 of 3 to the Orioles, and would have been swept if it wasn’t for Nick Swisher’s walkoff heroics. They were swept by the Rangers. They lost 2 of 3 to those pesky Rays, and they had opportunities to win each of those games. And the first game against the Orioles in this series looked like it was going to continue this losing trend. Magically, the Yankees turned the tides. And just like that, it seems the Yankees have a new life.

The Yankee jumped to a 1-0 lead in game 1 thanks to an Alex Rodriguez solo homer, but that was all the offense for awhile. Despite being in line for the loss, A.J Burnett pitched well, and I was satisfied with his performance. I felt bad that he wasn’t going to win it.

Bottom of the 9th, Yanks down 3-1. Jorge Posada took his turn at bat, and 11 pitches later he was on first with a leadoff single. I was thinking “Oh…here they go again…getting my hopes up for a comeback that will never happen…”

New York Yankees batter Jorge Posada follows through on his base hit off of Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Jeremy Guthrie with the bases loaded in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Baltimore, Maryland September 18, 2010. The hit scored two runs for the Yankees.   REUTERS/Joe Giza   (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Jo-Po ♥

Or so I thought.

Little did I know, that brilliant at-bat by Jorge would set the tone for the rest of the inning.

Curtis Granderson singled with 1 out. With 2 outs, The Drama King Alex Rodriguez stepped up to the plate. I wanted to watch, but I just couldn’t – I couldn’t watch A-Rod make the final out, because my Dad would never let me hear the end of it. (I thought so negatively because honestly, the Yankees were awful for so long. Even though I had the slightest feeling that A-Rod would do something big, I didn’t want to express it…I didn’t want to jinx him.)

With 2 strikes, A-Rod decided to wash away my worries. His 3-run homer revived both the Yankees, and myself. Finally, things were looking brighter.

                 New York Yankees batter Alex Rodriguez follows through on his three-run home run off of Baltimore Orioles relief pitcher Koji Uehara in the ninth inning of their American League baseball game in Baltimore, Maryland September 17, 2010.   REUTERS/Joe Giza   (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 Alex drove in all 4 Yankee runs in game 1.

Mariano nailed down the save, and the Yankees won 4-3.

I wondered: Could the Yankees string a few wins together? For game 2, the Yanks had the perfect guy on the hill: my sweet Hefty-Lefty, CC Sabathia ♥

The game 2 victory was a perfect team win. The offense was back, and it exploded for the first time in a LONG time. Jorge Posada set the tone once again with his clutch 2-run single in the first inning. Cano had a 2-run homer, Granderson had a 3-run homer, everyone contributed.

CC Sabathia wasn’t CC-spectacular, but he was still good. Yankee fans get spoiled with CC. Even so, CC’s 7 innings of 3-run baseball was good enough to earn himself that 20th win.

                       New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia (R) hugs catcher Jorge Posada in the dugout after Sabathia was taken out of the game after the seventh inning of their MLB American League baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles in Baltimore, Maryland September 18, 2010. Sabathia won his 20th game in the Yankees' win over the Orioles.  REUTERS/Joe Giza   (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                              Congrats on this milestone, C “Cy.” You are the best ♥

The heroes for the 4-3 victory in game 1 are A.J. Burnett, for a solid start, and A-Rod for all that offense. For game 2’s 11-3 win, the heroes are Cano and Granderson, for their homers, and CC Sabathia for yet another quailty outing, and for winning #20. And Jorge is a hero for both, because he set the tone for both wins.

All of a sudden, things are looking brighter for my Yankees. They are back in first place. Burnett pitched well. CC pitched well. Jeter is hitting again. Gardner and Swisher are back in the lineup. And best of all, Andy Pettitte is returning today. If Andy can be good, then I think the Yankees have a great shot at going all the way. CC, Andy, and Nova seem like enough to win it. And if BURNETT can stay sharp…..wouldn’t that be something…

These 2 wins very well may be the start of something good for my boys.

GO YANKEES!!!!

A Week of Winning!

It’s been a fun week to be a Yankees fan. 8 game winning streak? That’s a season high! I really can’t think of anything to complain about. Oh wait! How could I forget…I’m back in school! I do have stuff to complain about: my best friend is no longer in the school. One of the classes I signed up for is AP and I didn’t even know it, which gives me 3 AP’s when I wanted to take it lightly this year. I don’t have art this year. And, oh yeah: LIMITED BLOGGING TIME. It sucks.
 

But I guess it could be worse. I am not taking science or math this year because my math teacher scarred me for life last year. And this year, I actually like all my teachers. I’ve had them all before. Some of them are very fun to talk baseball with. And, oh yeah: IT’S SENIOR YEAR. I should enjoy this.

Even though I haven’t blogged recently, I have watched all the games. My boys are making me so proud. So far, the heroes for this winning streak are Curtis Granderson and Marcus Thames for their hot-hitting, and the bullpen, which has done an absolutely fantastic job.

Yesterday’s 7-5 win over the Blue Jays was the typical win of this winning streak.

Pitching Analysis: After beasting in the bullpen, Javier Vazquez was inserted back into the starting rotation. I had a feeling he would be….suckish. Javy tends to give up the longball. The Blue Jays tend to hit the longball. The wind was making it easier to hit the longball. Add all that up, and it wasn’t going to be a pretty day for Javy.

New York Yankees starting pitcher Javier Vazquez throws a pitch to the Toronto Blue Jays in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, September 4, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 Weather-wise, it was a beautiful day…but not for Javy.

Javy did give up the longball. Homers by Overbay and McDonald gave the Blue Jays a 3-0 lead. Vazquez didn’t even get through 5 innings, and he allowed 5 runs.

The bullpen again had a lot of outs to get, and they did another amazing job. The combo of Dustin Moseley, Boone Logan, Joba Chamberlain, Kerry Wood, and Mariano Rivera shut the door on the Blue Jay batters’s faces. They allowed 0 runs on 3 hits, and struckout 5. THEY ARE BEASTS!!!

Offensive Analysis: Despite being down 3-0, the Yankee bats weren’t ready to give up. They had that rally in them. And the rally all started thanks to my sweet Francisco Cervelli  ♥ In the 3rd with 1 out, Cervelli hit a ball in the left-center gap. And he hustled. And because he hustled, Francisco Cervelli had himself a double. That ball never made it to the wall. Many guys would have just settled for a single. But not my Cervelli. And that’s why I love him.

Then Brett Gardner walked (the 9th straight game he did that!), and Derek Jeter ripped a double, scoring Cervelli. Inching closer, it was now a 3-1 game.

After Mark Teixeira walked to load the bases, a struggling Robinson Cano stepped up to the plate. He hit a ball back up the middle, and it found grass! 2 runs scored on Robbie’s game-tying single.

The Yankees went ahead in the 4th. Cervelli doubled with a man on and 1 out, then Gardner drove in the go-ahead run with an RBI groundout. A wild pitch let another score, making it 5-3.

And finally, in the 7th, the Yankees had their share of the longball. With 2 outs, Cano singled, bringing up Hank Aaron  Marcus Thames. He had a few good swings earlier in the game, but didn’t have a hit to show for it. Until this:

New York Yankees batter Marcus Thames watches the ball after he hit a two-run home run against the Toronto Blue Jays in the seventh inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, September 4, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

I love my Marcus Thames!!!!!

That made it 7-5 Yankees. And that’s the final :)

Another win, another series win, and another game gained on those Pesky Rays. The heroes for this victory, the 8th in a row, are the bullpen, for cleanly eating up all those innings. And Marcus Thames, for turning into the Home Run King. Hank Aaron who? Hahaa…The other hero is my Francisco Cervelli, because he started the rally. And just cuz I love him ♥

   Home plate umpire Ed Hickox (L) calls strike three as New York Yankees catcher Francisco Cervelli (C) and Toronto Blue Jays batter Aaron Hill react on the final out of the Yankees win in their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York September 4, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 Oh, Francisco….too cute for words.

The Somebody Needs a Hug goes to Javier Vazquez. Javy, your confidence has taken a rollercoaster ride throughout the entire season. I don’t want you to lose it after 1 icky start. You were great out of the bullpen, and that was no fluke. Believe in yourself!

Yankees, the season is winding down. And you are still leading the AL East! Congrats on everything you have done so far. Please just keep it up. Go as far as you can this season, because I need to keep seeing you.

I love you! GO YANKEES!!! 

Grandma Makes Me Laugh

Since the last few Yankee games have been abysmal, I don’t want to talk about them. They are making me angry. I need a few laughs. So today, I’m going to talk about someone who never fails to make me laugh. She is a die-hard Yankees fan just like me. She’s my Grandma.

My Grandma is 86 years old. And she’s kind of Italian. And she’s lived in the Bronx her whole life. She does a lot to make us laugh, but the main thing she does is butcher words. Like when she says “toast,” she actually says “toes.” Or “dollar” is “dolla.” She never puts the “r” on her words. And sometimes, when she hears people actually put the “r” on the words, she says things like, “Oooh they talk with the ‘r’.”

Throughout the many years I have known my Grandma, and the many Yankee games we’ve watched together, I’ve noticed something: She butchers everybody’s name. And what’s really funny is that she actually says these things!

Here is a chunk of the Yankee roster – the way Grandma pronounces it:

- Mariani Rivera

Mariani, Grandma? Really? Must you make EVERYBODY Italian? How about Mariano? Or if that’s too complicated, why not just call him Mo?

- CC Sebastian 

Look at CC…he’s obviously disgusted this “name.”  Sebastian…where is that from? Okay. Grandma’s niece’s son is named Sebastian. But really, there is no excuse for that.

- Robinson Canoe

 

I guess this one was easy to mess up. But really? CANO.

- Kerry Woods

  

Again, this one is probably easy to mess up. But somtimes, I think she tries to mess them up. Kerry WOOD…is it really that hard?

- Derek Jeetah

Grandma never pronounces the “r” on the end of Jeter’s name. It’s just “Jeetah.” It rhymes with “cheetah.”

- Austin Sterns

I think Grandma only said this one once, but that’s because I corrected her right away. Kearns…Austin KEARNS.

- Curtain Granderson

Curtis Granderson Curtis Granderson #14 of the New York Yankees warms up before a game against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park on April 7, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts. 

Okay, this one isn’t really fair. Grandma just got tongue-twisted when she called him “Curtain.” But she still said it. Me, my little brother, and my Grandma were all watching the game one night. Me and my brother left the room for a minute, and Grandma shouted “HOME RUN!!” We asked, “Who, Grandma who!”

“Curt..uhhh…Cu…Curtain…oh, ah fanabla.”

She didn’t need to explain any more. We got it. Through our frenzy of laughter, we explained, “CURTIS!!!! CURTIS GRANDERSON!!! Aahahhahaaa….you just called him CURTAIN!!!!”

- Nick Swiffah

This one is everyone in my family’s favorite. She messed up the mess up. “Swiffah?” How about “Swiffer?” Or better yet, NICK SWISHER!!!!

Nick Swisher Nick Swisher #33 of the New York Yankees sits in the dugout before a game against the Seattle Mariners at Yankee Stadium on July 2, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.      

This one has a little story. It happened one night during the offseason of 2008. It was dinnertime, and everyone was coming into the kitchen. We left the YES Network on as always. News of the Betemit/Swisher trade was just released.

Grandma just found out about this trade. She didn’t know who the guy was that the Yankees just got. So she shouted, “ROBBIT, (“Robbit” is my older brother, Robert. We all call him Bobby. She calls him “Robbit,” as opposed to “Robert” or Bobby.”) ROBBIT…”

“Yes Grandma?” Bobby asked.

“WHO’S….NICK….SWIFFAH?”

Bobby was silent, confused like the rest of us.

“Who?” He asked.

“WHO’S NICK SWIFFAH?” Grandma tried again.

This time, Bobby went to the TV to see for himself. The headline “Yanks Trade for Nick Swisher.”

“GRANDMAAA!!!! It’s NICK SWISHER!!!!”

She didn’t have time to respond. We all started laughing at her. But she was a good sport about it, as always. “Oooh!” she said. Then she joined in with laughs. To this day, we still remind her of this one. And she never got it wrong the right way again. Now she calls him “Swizza.” Then I say, “No, Grandma…Nick SWISHER.”

I don’t think she’ll ever get it right.

A Taste of Their Own Medicine

Offense Explodes and Power Surges

Well, it’s not really fair to say that home runs are the Jays’s medicine. After all, the Yankees are the Bronx Bombers. So the Blue Jays lead the Bigs in home runs…big deal. Bautista has 40, when his previous career high was 16. Take away half of Bautista’s homers, because their is no way they are legit, and then the Yanks and Jays are neck-and-neck in the home run count. The Yankees had 5 homers last night. Combine that with solid starting pitching, and you have a win. The Yanks evened the series last night with their 11-5 victory.

Pitching Analysis: Ken Singleton pointed out during the broadcast that Dustin Moseley had alternated wins and losses in all of his Yankee starts. He won his last start, so according to the trend, Moseley was going to lose last night. But after Moseley struckout the steroid monster Bautista to end the 1st inning, I had a feeling the trend would end. And I was right.

New York Yankees pitcher Dustin Moseley throws against the Toronto Blue Jays during the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Toronto August 24, 2010.  REUTERS/ Mike Cassese  (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                                                    Dustin’s game face

Moseley pitched beautifully again last night, tossing 6 innings of 2-run ball. He didn’t allow a home run. The other three Blue Jay runs were given up by Chad Gaudin.

Offensive Analysis: The 11 Yankee runs came mostly off the longball. And it was so fun to watch. Homer after homer, the Yankee attitudes remained the same. Each Yankee who homered rounded the bases in the most modest and classy manner – perfectly Yankee. There was no bat-flipping, staring, trotting, or fist pumping right in the catcher’s face as they crossed the plate (ahem, Jose Bautista). They just put their adorable faces down and ran. God I love these men.

The 3rd inning alone contained 3 of the Yankees’s 5 home runs. First was Mark Teixeira, whose solo home run gave the Yanks a 3-0 lead.

New York Yankees batter Mark Teixeira runs the bases behind Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Marc Rzepczynski (L) after hitting a solo home run during the third inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Toronto August 24, 2010.  REUTERS/ Mike Cassese  (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 

After a Robinson Cano walk, Marcus Thames went deep with a 2-run shot.

New York Yankees batter Marcus Thames watches his single against the Toronto Blue Jays during the second inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Toronto August 24, 2010.  REUTERS/ Mike Cassese  (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 

And Jorge Posada went back to back with Marcus.

New York Yankees batter Jorge Posada watches his single against the Toronto Blue Jays during the sixth inning of their MLB American League baseball game in Toronto August 24, 2010.  REUTERS/ Mike Cassese  (CANADA - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

In the 5th, after a Marcus Thames single and an Austin Kearns walk, Curtis Granderson decided it was his turn to go deep. His 3-run shot gave the Yanks a 9-1 lead.

Then, it was the Captain’s turn. It was Jeet’s first home run since….jeez, I don’t even remember! That made it 10-1. And the Yanks went on to win it 11-5.

Overall, it was a great win for the Yankees. They pounded out 11 runs on 17 hits, and got contributions from guys up and down the lineup. The heroes for the victory are the Homer Boys Tex, Thames, Jo-Po, GrandyMan, and Jeet, as well as starter Dustin Moseley.

The Somebody Needs a Hug recipient is Nick Swisher. In the 7th inning last night, Swish fouled a ball off his knee, and he went down. He yelped in pain…which really hurts me. It’s sad to see Nick Swisher not smiling. The part that made me yell, “AWWWW” was when Swish insisted that he stay in the game. But two pitches later in to the at bat, Girardi pulled him. Swish again put up a fight, but it was no use: Girardi won. Then Brett Gardner had to finish the at bat. It was his birthday, and he didn’t even think he was going to play. He didn’t even have his high socks. Brett struckout. I’m sure he, and Swish, were not too thrilled.

Swisher says he is okay. He was his jolly smiley self in his postgame interview. I hope he can play today ♥

GO YANKEES!!!

Taming the Tigers

Yanks Take 3 of 4!

The Yankees haven’t won a series since they took 3 of 4 from the Indians at Cleveland on July 26th, 28th, and 29th. That’s a long time. So this series win is especially tasty, because the Yanks haven’t had that taste of victory in awhile. In the last 2 games, the offense exploded. Nice. And yesterday, the Yankees received a short but sweet performance from their starter. It was the perfect recipe for success. The Yanks won the finale by the score of 11-5.

Pitching Analysis: I missed seeing start of the game because I was coming home after a college tour, but I caught it on the radio. I was hoping for big things from Phil Hughes. After I heard that Miguel Cabrera homered AGAIN to give the Tigers a 2-0 lead, I wasn’t so sure. And the Yankee offense couldn’t do anything off Porcello (early, that is), so I thought they reverted back to their old ways of dying early on.

But then, Phil Hughes found it. And I began to think “Alright. After all, Hughes is pretty good. He’s fine now. And I didn’t ever see Miggy’s home run. It could’ve been like the other night when he hit one off Joba: it could have been a good pitch and a homer that barely scraped the fence.”

        New York Yankees starting pitcher Phil Hughes follows through on a pitch to the Detroit Tigers in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, August 19, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Huuuuuuuughes

Okay, not really, I saw it now, and it was no cheapie. Nothing hit into the Yankee bullpen is a cheapie. But who cares about that homer?

Phil Hughes settled down mighty fine after that first inning. He made that face, the mean one, so I knew he was feeling good out there. After 6 innings of 2-run ball, Hughes’s afternoon was over, but that’s not because of ineffectiveness. Hughes pitched very well yesterday.

Sergio Mitre, on the other hand, did not pitch well. At all. Sorry cutie, but you didn’t. He came in in the 7th, and the team needed him to finish the game. The Yanks had a nice cozy lead, and the bullpen needed a breather. It was up to Mitre to finish it. But after throwing 30 pitches in his 1st inning, I wasn’t so sure. He did come out there for the 8th, and the 9th. It wasn’t pretty, but he closed out the game – allowing 3 runs in 3 innings.

Defensive Analysis: Mark Teixiera deserves another Gold Glove this year – no doubt. He’s a beast, and there is nothing he can’t catch. I think this explains it all:

   New York Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira manages to catch a pop up by Detroit Tigers batter Johnny Damon despite letting it fall out of his glove in the fourth inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York in this August 19, 2010 combination photo. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Sliding into foul territory, bobble, falling, bobble, catch. Talk about perseverance.

Offensive Analysis: I didn’t know when/if the Yankees were going to start scoring. They perked up in the 4th, tying the game courtesy of RBI singles by Swisher and Granderson. 2-2.

The 6th inning is where all the fun really began. 9 runs in 1 inning, sealing the deal for the victory. Cano’s RBI double drove home Tex, giving the Yankees their first lead of the day, 3-2. But they didn’t stop there:

-Swisher walked, and Posada got an RBI single. 4-2

-Granderson walked to load the bases with none out. Austin Kearns got a 2-run double. 6-2

-Gardner walked, and Granderson scored on a pass ball. 7-2

-Gardner stole 2nd, and Jeter drove in 2 runs with a triple. 9-2

-Cano hit a 2-run homer. 11-2

                     New York Yankees batter Robinson Cano follows through his swing as he hits a two-run home run against the Detroit Tigers in the sixth inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, August 19, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 Cano doing the “drop” with his bat after hitting a home run.

I kind of felt a little sorry for the Tigers. Everything just fell apart.

WHO AM I KIDDING??? I hate the Tigers. How could I forget…that ugly Jeremy Bonderman hit my sweet Brett Gardner on purpose the other day…right in his cute little shin. The Tigers deserved to lose like that.

So finally, the Yankees win a series. The heroes for the finale victory are Phil Hughes, for his impressive performance, and the whole Yankee lineup, for their impressive performance as well.

The Somebody Needs a Hug recipient for the finale is Sergio Mitre. Sergio, thank you for biting the bullet and finishing the game. It was hot, you were stinky, but you toughed it out and did your job. Thank you :)

The Yankees are back in first place! This time, they better stay there.

GO YANKEES!

Happy Belated Birthday to Me!

Yanks Finally Win – A Day Late, But I’ll Take It

I’m not even kidding: I think the Yankees have a secret camera in my house. Yesterday, I was frustrated after they lost on my birthday (17!!!), and needed to take out my frustration. So for FanVsFan, I posted a debate about Joe Girardi, and how he deserves some of the blame for the offensive woes:

http://fanvsfan.com/claims/joe-girardi-is-partly-to-blame-for-the-yankees-s-offensive-struggles

He must have heard me recording this, because he took my advice. And it paid off! The Yankees won 6-2….on Jorge Posada’s birthday instead of mine. But that’s okay. We just needed a win!

Pitching Analysis: The Yankees looked toward CC Sabathia to throw up a bunch of zeros and stop the bleeding last night. I thought he was the perfect guy to be on that mound last night to turn things around for the Yanks. But after the first pitch of the game connected to A-Jax’s bat and landed in the seats, I lost faith. 1-0? Already? In the 1st inning? That was asking too much from the Yankees, who lost a game 1-0 to the Royals the other day. I thought we were screwed.

THANK GOD, I was wrong.

My sweet Hefty-Lefty settled down after 2 innings. After that leadoff homer, CC shut down the Tigers offense until Inge homered in the 7th. CC got into a little jam in the 7th, but made it out unscathed. I read his lips when he left the mound after the 7th: “F*** YEAH!!!!”

       New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia throws a pitch to the Detroit Tigers in the second inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, August 17, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                                         I was thinking the same thing, CC ♥

The bullpen, which all of a sudden has turned itself around, did well last night. David Robertson pitched a clean 8th, and Mariano tossed a scoreless 9th.

Defensive Analysis: Curtis Granderson has always played a good centerfield. Even when his hitting wasn’t there, he contributed with his glove. In the 1st inning, Granderson made two exceptional plays: One going to his left, and one diving going to his right. He helped set the tone last night, and got CC out of some potential jams. Thank you, Curtis!

http://newyork.yankees.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=11053857&topic_id=8877494&c_id=nyy

Offensive Analysis: This was what I really wanted for my birthday: runs. Joe Girardi took my advice. The Yankees really forced the action last night, which you have to do against a pitcher like Verlander. I saw a bunt last night. And I even saw a steal – by JORGE POSADA!!! Happy Birthday Jo-Po! That’s a single season-high 3 steals for him this year. And aside from the small ball, the Yankees actually hit last night. Hallelujah.

After falling behind 1-0 in the top half of the 1st, the Yankees came right back, which surprised me – they haven’t done that in ages. With loaded bases, Nick Swisher knocked in 2 with a single, giving the Yanks a 2-1 lead. It seems like ages since they’ve had a lead…

     New York Yankees batter Nick Swisher hits a two-run scoring single against the Detroit Tigers in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York August 17, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                                                      Swishialicious…

In the 2nd, my cute little Curtis hit a solo home run, making it 4-1 Yanks. Boy, he sure is cute when he’s swingin’ that stick so well ;)

In the 6th, Brett Gardner hit a 2-out double. That brought up Jeter, who I couldn’t help being angry at because of the loss on my birthday: the Yankees were down 3-1 in the bottom of the 9th. With bases loaded and 1 out, Jeter grounded into a game-ending double play. I hoped he could do something to make me happy last night. And he did. His 2 out RBI single scored Gardner, and gave the Yanks a 4-1 lead. Thank you, Derek.

In the 7th, Robbie Cano homered, making it 5-2. He’s been struggling lately, so that homer was a good sign. Later in the inning, Nick Swisher got hit by a pitch right on the foot. He went down, and was in a lot of pain. I didn’t even think Nick would have been in the lineup last night, because he hurt his forearm the night before. But with Berkman and A-Rod still hurt, Swish chose to play last night. What a guy. I was relieved when I saw him trot down to first base.

After an infield single by Marcus Thames and a Curtis Granderson walk, the bases were loaded for Ramiro Pena. He tacked on a run with a sac fly, giving the Yanks a 6-2 lead. And that’s the final score.

Last night’s win was comforting for sure. But is the offensive slump over? I wouldn’t exactly call 6 runs an explosion. But the offense doesn’t always need to explode for the team to win. I’m not going to say if the slump is over or not….I’ll just stay quiet and watch them play. I’m not going to be the one to jinx them (that’s Michael Kay’s job). The heroes for the victory last night are CC Sabathia, for another win, giving him the league-leading 16, Curtis Granderson, for his contributions with both the glove and bat, and Nick Swisher, for being a man, and for giving the Yankees their first lead since God knows when.

My little brother had an idea for a new segment on my blog: the “Somebody Needs a Hug” segment. This is brilliance at its best. Every game I watch, I always say that at least once. So why not write it, too? The “Somebody Needs a Hug” recipient is someone who either did something or had something happen to him that makes me pity him. The hug is to either comfort, or show that I appreciate him and his efforts. Thank you Tommy for this idea.

The first ever Somebody Needs a Hug goes to….Nick Swisher. Like I said before, he played through pain, and then got hurt again. I love my macho Yankees.

Stay tough, boys! And thanks for winning :)

Split, But I’m Still Upset

Lose 1st, Win 2, Lost Last

After that upsetting loss in Game 1, I knew it would be difficult for my Yanks to pull off a series win. They were close..so close…but they, and I, will have to settle for a split.

Game 2 was a nice bounce-back win for the Yankees. CC Sabathia gave it his all and proved once again why I call him “C Cy.” My Hefty-Lefty allowed just 2 runs in 8 innings. The offense was clutch, with the 4 consecutive 2-out singles in the 5th inning by Swisher, Teixeira, Cano, and Posada. The Yanks went on to win it 5-2.

         New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia throws a pitch to the Boston Red Sox in the first inning of their MLB American League baseball game at Yankee Stadium in New York, August 7, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                           CC should win the Cy Young if he keeps this up.

Game 3 was the Yankees typical offensive explosion off Josh Beckett. And unlike the last time Beckett pitched, he only hit 1 Yankee batter: Robinson Cano. Last time, he angered me…but let’s not go there again. The Yankee offense pushed across 7 runs off Beckett. Lance Berkman finally found his stroke, going 3-4 with a run and an RBI. It was nice to see him start to hit. He was one of many Yankees who had a nice day at the dish.

But perhaps the most pleasantly surprising aspect of Game 3 was the starter, spot starter, Mr. Dustin Moseley. He wooed me in his first start, but didn’t pitch too well in his second start as a Yankee. This time, he was called upon on short notice to make the start for the injured A.J. Burnett. And this time, he shined. Oh, how he shined! In the field he made 3 exceptional plays, and he pitched pretty well, too. Moseley pitched 6.1 innings, and allowed just 2 runs. What a night for this little cutie! The Yankees went on to win this one 7-2.

                              New York Yankees starting pitcher Dustin Moseley delivers against the Boston Red Sox during the first inning of American League MLB baseball action at Yankee Stadium in New York August 8, 2010. REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

                                               Moseley is a beeeeast ♥

That brings us to the finale. I was hoping that since the Yanks won 2 in a row, and since the offense wasn’t scuffling, that they would have a good day. And I hoped that Phil Hughes would be his Philthy old self. I was right about half of it, the pitching half. But as everyone knows, getting a 50 on a test isn’t going to cut it.

Hughes allowed 2 runs in the 2nd inning. Maybe Jorge Posada’s throwing error had something to do with it? Maybe. But that’s not why the Yankees lost. Like I said the other day, don’t blame things on one guy – this is a team effort! And the team couldn’t hit for their life today.

The Yankees had bases loaded with none out in the 7th, and FAILED to score a run. Talk about frustrating…

In the 8th, Mark Teixeira provided a spark of hope with his big fly off Daniel Bard, which made the score 2-1.

Jonathan Papelbon, who is #1 on my “If I could kick someone in the balls list,” came in for the 4 out save today. I figured, “Hey! This is good. The more opportunities the Yanks have against Papelbon, the better. He sucks.”

So in the 9th, Curtis Granderson leads off with a strikeout. Very productive…Then Jeter walks, and I begin to get a little excited. I wanted to see some pie today…but from there, it went downhill.

Nick Swisher struckout for the 2nd out, and then Tex….he put up such a tough at bat…but of course, it ended in a K. I somewhat expected this, but still – when I saw it happen, I exploded.

A little background info on what was going on in my living room during the 9th: My dog was eating his dinner in the living room and he tends to make a mess; dropping kibble from his flews, spewing water when he shakes and his drool goes flying, typical dog stuff. So we put a towel under his bowl so the customary mess would be easier to clean up. He was eating “Turducken,” which sounds gross, but actually smells quite tasty. My mother was also in the room, and I told her to get out because I thought she was a jinx (she listened). My older brother was watching the game with me.

       

Words cannot describe my hatred for you…

Okay, back to the game: the microsecond after Tex struckout, I lost it. I just went berserk. The throwing of my shoes at the TV is normal for me, and of course I did that. But that didn’t make me feel better: that intense hatred of losing, and that hatred for Papelbon, lingered on. In anger mode, I scanned the room for something else to violently thrust at the screen. Then I saw it: the towel. My dog finished eating, leaving a trail of Turducken embedded into the towel.

Papelbon was going his little fist pump, when SPLAT!

        

The Turducken-covered towel hit him square in the face, thanks to my powerful throw, and I screamed:

“HAVE SOME F****N’ TURDUCKEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Then, still enraged, I jumped off the couch, picked up the towel, and began whipping Papelbon’s stupid face through the TV.

For some reason, my brother found this funny. And he told me to write this here for the world to see. Why? Well, now that the game has been over for a little while, and my anger is slowly subsiding, I guess it is kind of funny. Kind of. He sure thought so. He’s still laughing at it.

So the Yankees lost the finale 2-1, and I clearly was not thrilled. Any time the Yankees can ruin Papelbon’s day, I’m happy. But that didn’t happen today. I really wanted to win this series, but you can’t win ‘em all.

I’ll have to get over it. These random bursts of animosity really are not healthy.

Although they are kind of funny.

                            

What the Bombers are All About

Yanks Even Series in Tampa Bay

Last night’s game 2 win insured that the Yankees will leave Tampa Bay in first place where they belong. Ahh…that’s so comforting. I didn’t see game 1 of this series, and I’m glad I didn’t. I would have gotten too angry that they lost 3-2 and got just 1 hit after the first inning. But I don’t have to think about that, because game 2 had the desired results: Yankees win. It was another close game, but this time the Bombers came out on top 5-4.

Pitching Analysis: I’m so happy the trade deadline is over and Javier Vazquez is still on the team. I was afraid he would be dealt for someone like Jayson Werth. Thank GOD that didn’t happen. Javy has had the lowest ERA of all Yankee starters since May 12. I hoped this trend of success would continue last night. Javy battled, but he was good. He gave up a few leads, but managed to limit the damage and keep the Rays from a big inning. Vazquez threw 6.1 innings and allowed 4 runs on 8 hits.

The bullpen was absolutely FABULOUS last night. The combo of David Robertson and Boone Logan is proving to be very effective. It almost reminds me of the Philthies Coke and Hughes last year. These guys are the new bridge to Mariano – sorry Joba. And Chan Ho, I’m sorry you were DFA’d. I hope someone picks you up, just not the Yankees :)

New York Yankees' David Robertson pitches against the Seattle Mariners in the eight inning at SAFECO Field in Seattle on July 9, 2010.   UPI Photo/Jim Bryant. Photo via Newscom

May 10, 2010: New York Yankees' Boone Logan (48) during the MLB baseball game between the New York Yankees and Detroit Tigers at Comerica Park in Detroit, Michigan.

Robertson and Logan did their jobs and got the ball to Mariano, who of course picked up his 22nd save of the season.

Offensive Analysis: The Yankees played catch-up all of last night. Curtis Granderson’s sac fly in the 2nd tied the game at 1. In the 6th, the Yanks were down 3-1. Derek Jeter led off with a double, and Mark Teixeira hit an absolute BOMB for a 2-ruin homer to tie the game at 3.

The Yanks fell behind once again, and once again the home run gave them new life. Nick Swisher crushed a hanging curveball for a solo home run in the 7th, tieing the game at 4. The Yankees kept on fighting back. I didn’t think it was possible for them to lose, but it seemed odd for them to win, because they never had the lead.

July 30, 2010 - St. Petersburg, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES - epa02267787 New York Yankees right fielder Nick Swisher rounds the bases after hitting a two-run home run against the Tampa Bay Rays during the first inning of a Major League Baseball game in St. Petersburg, Florida, USA 30 July 2010.

  Swish, running with his head down after his home run…just like a good little Yankee ;)

In the 9th with the score tied, the Rays brought out their big All-Star closer, Rafael Soriano. Robinson Cano, who already had two doubles, stepped up to the plate with 1 out. He is SUCH a beast. Is there anyone this guy can’t hit? He proved to me once again last night that he is a magical player. Robbie’s home run off Soriano gave the Yankees their first lead of the night, 5-4. That was all they needed.

Robinson Cano gives the Yankees the win with a solo home run in the ninth inning, while new acquisition Lance Berkman (below) goes 0-for-4 in his Yankees debut.

Thank you, Robbie ♥

What really annoyed me was in 6th inning when Matt Joyce hit a homer to give the Rays a 4-3 lead. He was SO obnoxous. He did the “drop” with his bat, and just stared at it before finally performing his home-run trot. He was really showing off, and it was uncalled for. He should have just put his head down and ran, because that homer meant nothing: they LOST. I mean, who does he think he is? He has 5 homers this year. And he’s really tearing it up with a .230 batting average. Wow, he’s good. He and the Rays are ridiculous. They think who they are. But who are they? They need to show some class out there on the field. They really are the opposite of the Yankees. The Bombers had 3 home runs last night, and you didn’t see them showing off – even though Tex, Swish, and Cano are legit good players. No. They don’t do that because it isn’t right. The Yankees just drop the bat, put their heads down, and run. When they get back to the dugout, THEN they celebrate.

That’s what the Yankees are all about: class. They are the best team, and they don’t act obnoxious about it. Those pesky Rays aren’t the best, so why do they act like that? The need to stop being so cocky, because they haven’t proven anything yet. They didn’t win anything.

The heroes for last night’s Drama Club win are the new and IMPROVED bridge to Mariano, Mr. David Robertson and Mr. Boone Logan. You two are adorable, and you really make me proud. The other heroes are the 3 homer-boys from last night, Mark Teixeira, Nick Swisher, and Robinson Cano. I’d like to thank you guys for your performance and behavior on the field. You make me proud in both respects.  

I’d just like to welcome Lance Berkman, Austin Kearns, and Kerry Wood to the Yankees. Guys, you will love it here. The Yankees know how to win. Sorry that you have to shave your beards and cut your hair, but I don’t think that’s a big price to pay. You guys are Yankees!

Seriously, if you're a Yankee fan, do you want to go to war with Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon, or with this year's trade-deadline saviors - Lance Berkman (above) and Austin Kearns.

Hello, Mr. Big Puma. You will love the Bronx Zoo :)

Quite Unorthodox

Yanks Win Series Finale in Epic Adventure

Last night’s Yankee game was far from the norm. And if I may be permitted a cliche, you never know what you are going to see on the baseball diamond. A lot happened on the diamond last night that utterly confused me. But it was okay, because the Yankees won 11-4 and won the series.

Pitching Analysis: I was a little ticked off at Girardi for losing faith in Sergio Mitre so quickly – I mean it was 1 bad start. But whatever, I have a heart. That’s why he’s the manager and I’m not (that was harsh, Joe. I apologize). So Dustin Moseley got the start last night, and I have to say: he really impressed me.

I wasn’t too sure at first, though. Moseley got into a quick bases-loaded jam in the 1st inning. I was beginning to think “Would Mitre be any worse?” But unlike Mitre, (I’m sorry baby! I must be honest…), Moseley didn’t unravel. He battled back, and escaped the inning having allowed just 1 run on a sac fly by Austin Kearns. He threw 30 pitches to do so, but he did it.

         July 29, 2010 - Cleveland, OHIO, UNITED STATES - epa02266282 Dustin Moseley of the New York Yankees delivers a pitch against the Cleveland Indians in the first inning of their game at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, 29 July 2010.

  Dustin Moseley: A beast on the mound :)

After that, Moseley was amazing. He really was. That was the only run he allowed in his 6 innings of work. Despite throwing 30 pitches in the 1st inning, Moseley got his pitch count under control. He threw 83 pitches, and 55 were for strikes. With every inning that passed, I was beginning to fall more and more for Moseley. He looked really….really good….kinda like Mitre….if you know what I mean….

                       TEMPE, AZ - FEBRUARY 25: Dustin Moseley #58 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim poses during photo day at Tempe Diablo Stadium on February 25, 2009 in Tempe, Arizona. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

 Those eyes…Oh baby…

I never thought it would happen this quickly, but I think it did. I mean, I never thought I would like the guy replacing Mitre, who I LOVE. But now…well….OKAY I’LL ADMIT IT!

I LOVE DUSTIN MOSELEY! 

Ahh…that’s better :)

So the bullpen was one thing that remained normal this game: David Robertson was good, and Chan Ho Park was suckish. Very. And he knew it.

                         July 29, 2010 - Cleveland, OHIO, UNITED STATES - epa02266552 Chan Ho Park of the New York Yankees wipes his brow during the ninth inning in which he allowed three runs against the Cleveland Indians in their game at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, 29 July 2010. The Yankees defeated the Indians 11-4.

     Ooh…he doesn’t look to good…now I can’t help but think about that diarrhea thing….

                                                         This poor man…

Defensive Analysis: The defense was good up until the 9th inning. I guess Girardi was so sure that the Yankees were going to win. Otherwise, he would have never put Marcus Thames at 3rd base. MARCUS THAMES HAS NEVER PLAYED THIRD BASE! It’s no wonder he airmailed that throw to 1st into the SEATS. He was throwing like an outfielder. It was the weirdest thing, because he made a great play to get to that ball. But his throw was an epic fail. That 9th inning got a little too interesting. The Indians scored three runs, and I was waiting for Girardi to get Mariano warming.

Offensive Analysis: Once again, the Yankee offense exploded. But it took a long time for the explosion to actually occur. A-Rod had a sac fly in the 3rd to tie the score at 1. And in the 6th, the Yankees finally took the lead on an RBI single by Jeter. But after that, the floodgates opened.

In the 7th:

-Cano hit a solo homer, giving the Yanks a 3-1 lead

-Swish and Gardner walked

-Cervelli got an RBI single, making it 4-1

-Colin Curtis was hit in the butt (poor cutie) to load the bases

                     July 29, 2010 - Cleveland, OHIO, UNITED STATES - epa02266495 Colin Curtis of the New York Yankees is hit by a pitch in the seventh inning against the Cleveland Indians in their game at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, 29 July 2010.

 Aw.

-Jeter walked with the bases loaded, making it 5-1

-Granderson got a 2-run single, now 7-1

-Alex Rodriguez got a 2-run single. 9-1 Yankees!

The offense had a mini explosion in the 8th when it tacked on 2 more runs. RBI singles by Ramiro Pena and Juan Miranda gave the Yanks an 11-1 lead.

But perhaps the best offensive highlight, was the no offense at all. In the 9th inning, the Indians did what the Yankees did back on April 13th last year: they used a position player to pitch! What! But the best part was that the Yankees didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning since the first. And wouldn’t you know? Little Andy Marte pitched a 1-2-3 inning. AND HE STRUCKOUT NICK SWISHER!

         July 29, 2010 - Cleveland, OHIO, UNITED STATES - epa02266545 Third baseman Andy Marte of the Cleveland Indians came on as a relief pitcher and delivers a pitch against the New York Yankees in the ninth inning of their game at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio, USA, 29 July 2010. The Yankees defeated the Indians 11-4.

 Andy Marte for Cy Young!

I bet Nick Swisher is the only position player to ever have gotten a strikeout as a pitcher, and to have struck out against a position player. I think letting Marte pitch was a good decision by Manny Acta. It was a miserable game for his team, so why not boost their spirits with some humor? The Indians really got a kick out of it. And so did the Yankees! I bet Nick Swisher did.

So the Yankees won the series finale for the 11th time in a row. The heroes for this not-so-regular win are the entire Yankee lineup for their contributions. And for the first time ever, a hero will be from the other team: Andy Marte. It was amazing what he did out there.

Oh, and how could I forget the other hero: Dustin Moseley, my newest love ♥

            New York Yankees pitcher Mitch Talbot (L) talks with catcher Francisco Cervelli during the first inning of the MLB American League baseball game against the Cleveland Indians in Cleveland, Ohio July 29, 2010. REUTERS/Aaron Josefczyk (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

 These two are so cute!

The Yankees start that crucial series with the Rays tonight! I wish them luck. 

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