Aug
03

Moose rights his — and the Yanks’ — ships

By

Five days ago, Mike Mussina faced the Baltimore Orioles, and his former team shelled him. He allowed six runs in five innings, and the Yanks eventually lost by the score of 13-4. Meanwhile, the Yanks, heading into today, had dropped five out of six and were in danger of seeing their great post-All Star Break gains wiped away.

So when Moose took the mound — fittingly enough on Old Timers’ Day — he was out looking for revenge for both himself and the team. He did not disappoint. Facing a red-hot Angels team, Mussina had a stellar first inning before running into trouble in the second inning when Garret Anderson singled and Howie Kendrick doubled.

With one out and the bases loaded, Mussina induced a ground ball that could have been an inning-ending double play. But a bad throw by Wilson Betemit, filling in for the aching Robinson Cano, allowed an unearned run to score. The Yanks were down 2-0, and things seemed on the verge of getting ugly.

But Moose, the oldest timer on the Yanks, had something else in mind. Over the next 5.1 innings, Mussina would be quite literally perfect. Following Betemit’s error and the unearned run, no other Angel reached base until Jose Veras walked Chone Figgins in the 8th inning of what was then an 8-2 game.

For the Yanks, it was the second straight strong pitching performance, and this time, the offense — behind four home runs by Betemit, the hot Bobby Abreu, Jose Molina and A-Rod — scored enough runs to back it up. The Yanks teed off against Jered Weaver and managed an important win as both Boston and Tampa Bay won.

Tonight’s game provided a second straight day of relief for the Yanks. While they lost a heartbreaker on Friday night, Sidney Ponson had by far his best start of the season, allowing no runs in seven innings. Prior to these two outings, the Yanks’ pitchers had put together an 8.80 ERA over their last 44 innings. With this win, the Yanks maintained the 2.5 games separating them from the Sox, and they needed this win. Later today, the Yanks and Darrell Rasner will face John Lackey who, in his last outing, no-hit the Red Sox in Fenway for over eight innings. That won’t be a walk in the park.

Categories : Game Stories
  • Old Ranger

    Looks like the moose has put it together this year. He sure picked the right time to pitch well…thanks Moose.
    He and Pounds did very well for two washed up pitchers. Now, we need the rest of the team to pick it up. 27/08?

  • Old Ranger

    Another thing to think of; is Cash trying to trade Pavano? The way he is going in the MiL, he, Phil and IPK should be ready to pitch in the show before Sept. Maybe they can get a good OF prospect for Carl. When he is healthy, he is a good #3 pitcher…or do you guys think they may throw him into the rotation it self? They really have nothing to lose by giving him a few starts, he is a big improvement on Raz/Pounds…draft picks, if he shows well enough to be an A or B. 27/08?

    • TheLastClown

      I don’t know all the criteria used to evaluate Type A’s & B’s, but since it is calculated over the span of the two most recent seasons….you can’t really think 11.1 IP, 12 H allowed, 6 ER….TWO games….from last year is going to factor into either Type A or B. Even if he pitches 5 or 6 quality starts *best case scenario* when he returns in late Aug/early Sept. Last year, the lowest rated Type B starter was Paul Byrd, obviously not fantastic, but an innings eater with decent 4 or 5 numbers.

      I don’t know if Cashman would deal him, it would be selling extremely low on someone who could have a pretty high two month ceiling. Plus with the push back of Wangs recovery, we won’t have him for the stretch drive, just for the playoffs. If Pavano can succeed, then the place is kept warm without totally relying on Hughes & IPK to be great, or Rasner & Ponson to survive..

      But I do think he’ll get thrown into the rotation, I think if he starts and wins a few games down the stretch it’ll take a little salt out of the wound that is his signing/contract.

      And I think since his next job depends on it, he will pitch as well as he possibly can, and maybe not do stupid things that get him injured and then lie about it. He’ll probably be an improvement over Rasberry and Sir Sid….but I don’t even remember how he pitches. I can’t remember ever seeing him to the point where I knew what he threw and thought along with him at all.

      I hope he does well & gets the hell out of not only the Yankees, but the American league. I don’t want to see him succeed *if he can* any extended amount of times. Guys that behaved the way he did, especially coming back from injury, are leeches & liars, and if he was trying to “tough out” broken ribs in AAA so he could get back faster or some bullheaded pride-ego trip, then he’s just a stupid lying leech. Oh well…I still want to see him pitch his ass off down the stretch :)

      • Old Ranger

        I feel relatively the same. I’d like to see him pitch lights out for us, then…? I don’t think it would be a bad call to bring him up (when ready) and let the other guys get fully ready. IPK, Phil and Aceves are getting closer. 27/08??

  • Lanny

    Moose has a shot for the Cy Young. No joke.

    • Mark B

      That’s a pretty long shot, though. Unless he breaks down, the award is Cliff Lee’s to lose at 14-2 with an ERA of 2.58 on a terrible team, almost a complete run below Mussina. Halladay probably comes in second with 12 wins, a 2.85 ERA and 7 CG. I see Moose challenging Joe Saunders and possibly Ervin Santana for third place.

    • r.w.g.

      I think it is hard to give the Cy Young to a guy who has given up more hits than innings pitched.

      That said, he’s been our ace. If the offense was even half this good for a number of his starts, he’d have almost 20 wins by now.

  • Bart

    Lost in all the July trading window activity is the fact that Cashman traded guys that would have (might have if tried) brought Sabbathia and a solid Pitching based shot at October

    IRod is a rental who can bring draft choices. Nady and Marte are keepers who solve 2008 and 2009 problems areas. But the critical need is pitching.

    The question is do the 3 acqusiitons make for a better stretch run than Sabbathia?

    — Piching Ponson is dodging bullets – his game was as awful as all his starts have been

    He does not control any aspect of the game as Pitching is expected to
    — the outcome is just an accident
    — this time guys caught balls that in earlier starts got by —

    Now Rasner has to follow Ponson and Mussina and he will not benefit from the similarities in the rotation.

    A rotation of Pettit, Rasner, Joba, Mussina, (anyone but Ponson/Igawa/Pavano) defies convention because Rasner does nit rate a #2 but any looks the hitters get are at least strikingly different.

    Running Mussina, Ponson, and Rasner out in succession is a recipe for disater. and sets up losing streaks that out extra weight on Andy, Joba or Moose depending on where their turn falls.

    Back to the top — Sabbathia for Karstens, Farnsworth, Tabata, Ohlendorf would have been a fine deal – mix as you will; add subtract a Gardner.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike A.

      The thing is that the Yanks have guys capable of replacing Ponson and Rasner. Kennedy’s ready basically, and Hughes is a few weeks off.

      Who were they going to bring in the help the offense? They don’t have anyone.

      And why pay twice for Sabathia? Trade a bunch of prospects for him, then you need to shell out $150M to keep him in the offseason.

  • Old Ranger

    I posted a diatribe (Thru/Fri) on replacing the OF for next year. Chris, not with standing, said (more or less) it was stupid…I would like to reiterate the proposal, why not do it.
    We are going to pass on Bobby, Jason anyhow, why not trade/send Melky to the MiL, use Matsui as DH…maybe trade Johnny, or not. Bring in some very good athletes for the OF, give Brett, Justin, Colin Curtis, A-Jax (AA), or even Cooper (A) a chance in spring training. I keep seeing and hearing of some blocked OF in the MiL systems (other teams) try to get one or two.
    I am considered an Optimist, I don’t slam our players and never will, but there comes a time to go with the flow and be creative…not stupid. The OF will be new next year…instead of paying for ageing sluggers, let’s go for athletes (that happen to be good ball players). Now, you are free to rip. 27/08??