Verlander dominant as Yanks fall to Tigers


Baseball is a tricky game sometimes. Take last night for instance. Was the Yankees offense horrible, or did Justin Verlander bring his A game? I thought it was mostly the latter, with a smattering of the former. In any case, he mowed down the Yanks with precision, tossing 79 of his 110 pitches for strikes. He lasted only two batters into the eighth, which seems strange for a guy who had pitched a shutout to that point, but striking out nine guys tends to work up the pitch count.

Yet the offense still had its faults. The Yanks put the leadoff runner on in four of the nine frames, and managed to score only in the ninth. The worst of the failings was in the fourth, when Teixeira and Matsui hit back to back singles. After a Cano fly out, Verlander struck out Nick Swisher and Melky Cabrera, thus ending the threat. It happened again in the eighth, with back to back singles by Ramiro Pena and Derek Jeter which chased Verlander from the game. On came Bobby Seay, he of the 1.491 WHIP last year, who took out Johnny Damon, Mark Teixeira, and Hideki Matsui to preserve the shutout.

On the bright side, the Yankees saw a far more efficient version of CC Sabathia last night. Four runs over 8 innings doesn’t look too pretty in the box score, but for anyone watching the game it wasn’t bad at all. The run in the first was an unfortunate one, but easily forgivable. Placido Polanco hit a double on a pitch at his shins, and Cabrera hit a sharp liner that I thought that Jeter would have had for sure. Still, it was just one run. The Yanks had time to recover and they didn’t capitalize. Meanwhile, CC continued to cruise.

His only other blemish came in the sixth, which started with a Curtis Granderson bunt single — one which CC made every conceivable effort to field and make a play on. Polanco’s subsequent double wasn’t exactly a torched ball; it kind of fell in between Melky and Damon and rolled slowly for a bit. It bought enough time for Granderson to score from first. And then came the Mags homer which, judging by his expression after hitting it, even he didn’t think was going out. Oh well. It happens.

It took CC just 99 pitches to finish off eight frames, giving the bullpen a much-needed day off. Moreover, he threw 70 of those pitches for strikes, a far better mark than he’d seen even in his other good outing against the Royals. The six hits, seven strikeouts, and especially the zero walks were also encouraging. It seems CC was done in by the home run. Otherwise it was a solid outing, and a good sign that CC is over his early-season shakes.

Finally, let us take another minute to appreciate Robinson Cano. Dude has been on fire to start the season. He’s quickly put 2008 behind him, which is all you can hope for.

They’ll do it again tomorrow, same time, with Phil Hughes making his 2009 debut against Edwin Jackson. The Yanks could really, really, really…really use a win.

Categories : Game Stories
  • Accent Shallow

    I’m not especially confident in Hughes as stopper. Hopeful, but not very confident. Would have liked to see him get more starts in AAA.

    Tigers smacked him around in ’07 and ’08, although I’m not sure that that’s especially predictive.

    • dudes

      i’m more confident in hughes as a stopper versus any other available option right now (wang, kennedy, aceves). that’s really all that matters.

      • Bo

        Why would you be confident in him as a stopper? hes been at AAA all yr and hasn’t won a game since 2007.

        • http://mantisfists.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/julius-carry-aka-shonuff.jpg The Honorable Congressman Mondesi

          You failed to recognize that he said he’s more confident in Hughes as a stopper than he is in Wang, Kennedy or Aceves playing that role. He didn’t say “I’m confident in Hughes as a stopper” in a vacuum.

          So, your comment should read:

          “Why would you be [more] confident in him as a stopper [than you would be in Wang, Kennedy or Aceves as a stopper]? hes been at AAA all yr and hasn’t won a game since 2007.”

          Now that’s a little bit different, isn’t it?

  • Drew

    Damn Joe, now I feel like someone kicked my dog.

  • V

    If you want one last chance to buy low on CC in a fantasy league, this is your chance to do it.

    • Mike HC

      I agree … I’m also buying low on CC

      • V

        I own him in one my leagues (was a silly league, drafted Jeter, Damon, CC, traded for Cano early on, and I’m in third. My serious league, awesome draft, got everything I wanted in each round, 6th, lol (infield of Soto+Votto+Phillips+Rollins+AramisRamirez, only Votto’s pulling his weight):

        I put in an offer in that league, but I’m already STACKED at pitching.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Joe Nathan and Josh Beckett for CC and Bobby Jenks? That trade fair?

      • Drew

        Fair? If Jenks pitches well you just made a trade that is exactly equal.

      • andrew

        Seems fairly even to me…

      • Confused Axl

        Somebody offered me Swisher for Pablo Sandoval…Swisher is in a decline and Pablo Honey is coming around though! What to do! What to do!…see ya Swish…

  • gxpanos

    I was ecstatic with CC’s throwing strikes tonight, the innings, the seven K’s. One pseudo-mistake to Mags, really. That’s all we can ask for, and to see him throw the way he did leads me to believe that he’ll start to win game after game after game pretty soon.

    Also: if Robbie didn’t have an 0-4 against KC on April 11, a game in which I distinctly remember him having two good at-bats, he’d have a hit in a every game and an 18 game streak. He’s at 14 now (i think), which ain’t so bad either.

    I actually feel a lot better today than after the weekend, even though they lost. The wins’ll come.

  • http://www.puristbleedspinstripes.com Rebecca-Optimist Prime

    Think you got enough reallys in there?

    Can’t believe the number of people advocating for the Yanks to bring up AJax. Talk about short ter thinking!

    • DP

      I’m confused

      • Brooklyn Ed

        ESPN had reports about the Yanks been telling people that Ajax might be up sooner than expected.

        • DP

          Missed that. Apparently also missed that she was talking to the author of the post, rather than a commenter. Apparently I’m an idiot.


      • DP

        Oh must have been a deleted comment. God, you guys just support the Yankees and delete comments! There’s a whole world out there take off your rose colored glasses!

        • http://www.puristbleedspinstripes.com Rebecca-Optimist Prime


  • yankees=warriors

    It’s a shame that Pena had 2 hits today and they couldn’t capitalize on it. But hopefully, this will keep Berroa on the bench for a few days.

    • Accent Shallow

      Yeah. If the banjo hitters on this team (Molina and Pena) are on base, that’s something that needs to be capitalized upon.

  • V

    Teixeira is definitely one ‘click’ away from being a monster at the plate – he’s JUST missing almost every time up there – I think I’ve counted, what, 5 deep flies that would be HRs if he weren’t JUST under them?

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see him turn it on once he has ARod batting 4th.

    • Evan

      Either that or his wrist is really taking away his power. I hope you are right, but the way this season has been going it’s probably his injured wrist.

  • JobaWockeeZ

    And I just noticed that CC was good today when Molina caught him. Not a knock on Posada but I’d love to see Molina start more at C. He is better defensively. When A-Rod comes back we can afford to do that.

  • Rich

    Ham’s A-Rod hate reaches a new height:

    But bringing back a 33-year-old former steroids user with a bad hip isn’t going to solve the problem of the Yankees looking like a company softball team at times.

    • http://www.teamnerdrage.com leokitty

      That’s just a ridiculous reach. I have to believe he burst into giggles after typing that out.

      • http://www.puristbleedspinstripes.com Rebecca-Optimist Prime

        Well, that’s one way of looking at it!

        • http://www.teamnerdrage.com leokitty

          I couldn’t bring myself to think someone would seriously think that. Then I got to the part where he maligns Cano for not being a good base stealer and my illusion fell apart.

          The team needs to be more athletic! Quick clone healthy Cody Ransom! Maybe stick some Juan Pierre in there!!

    • Kara

      He really needs to get over this whole A-Rod hating thing. I’m not the hugest of A-Rod fans (off the field), but if he seriously thinks that putting A-Rod’s bat in the line-up in place of Pena or Berroa isn’t going to help the Yankees, he’s losing it. A-Rod will be a huge boost to the offense. His A-Rod bashing is getting old.

    • desus

      I’m pretty sure after he typed that a-rod line, he stopped, looked over at a mirror and said “Zing!” while winking at himself.

      • Tom Zig

        You forgot that he gave himself a fist bump too.

    • Tom Zig

      I think LoHud gave me the ban hammer :(

      • Bo

        You actually disagreed with him that A-Rod is terrible and probably the worst human being in the world??? You deserve to go!

  • treynz22

    ehh call me out of line or what have you, i assume tex sees better pitches when A-Rod gets back so Tex goes to town…just hope Melancon sticks with the big squad…im hoping we make a little run before A-Rod gets there so we can add on to it…being a bit positive i guess but i enjoy watching Pettitte do his thing and Burnett was due for a lousy outing and CC will come around..all big pitchers will figure it out..any ideas of another arm coming up to help us out in the pen?…btw super pumped to watch hughes tomorrow regardless of what happens…hope the best for him

    • jsbrendog

      agreed. there is NO WAY IN HELL that burnett/cc throw like karstens/ponson/rasner all year. and there is very ltitle chance hughes/kennedy can be as epicly awful as they were last yr in fill in roles.

      the only thing I am worried about that might not “fix” itself is the bullpen. but therein lies the greatest depth. What’s good is that there are so many bodies cash cna just employ the spaghetti defense. throw them all at the wall and see who sticks….give up the meatsa ballsa and back to aaa for you. NO SOUP FOR YOU

  • Andrew

    Well, was there any doubt that Verlander would bring his ‘A’ game tonight? It was a near certainty that our lineup would go down without a fight. Sad to see the team like this. And I’m not talking in terms of W’s and L’s – the team is just completely uninspiring. Our youth is… non-existent, at least in terms of position players. Athleticism? Forget about it. Heart/desire? Nada.

    This approach hasn’t worked for the past 9 years, and it’s not going to work this year, either, I’m afraid. I’m not giving up, and we may even make the playoffs, but WS? At this point, barring a major trade, we’re not even a contender. Not even close.

    • Arod, all the time

      Heh, old men in pinstripes blew their load over the weekend. It’ll take them another couple of weeks to regenerate.

      • Bo

        Was it really tough to blow away that lineup?

        Who scares you besides maybe 4 guys? The bottom half is putrid right now.

    • jon

      I almost typed out a real response to you then i realized you had to be joking, no one is this stupid.

  • Thomas A. Anderson

    I have never seen a fanbase just give up so easily. Ever.

    Yankee fans as a whole are just like schoolyard bullies. They love to throw their weight around but when they get hit in the mouth, they coil into the fetal position.

    Shake yourselves, people.

    • Tony

      Couldn’t agree more

    • Tom Zig

      Most of us over here aren’t giving up. But you can understand some of our reactions though. It seems like only ridiculous things happen to us. Like Ellsbury stealing home, or Mo blowing a save with 2 outs with a 2 run lead, or Burnett giving up a 6 run lead.

      These things just don’t happen often. Of course things get magnified when playing the Red Sox in April.

      I don’t believe you were generalizing the RAB crowd, but Yankee fans in general. I understand what you mean though. We all know people who give up at the first losing streak. But hey that’s what LoHud and other assorted blogs/message boards are for.

      • Bo

        Being realistic and pointing out the problems we have isn’t giving up.

  • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Expired Milk

    What terrible luck the Yankees have.

    Cliff Lee having a bad start- Faces the Yankees and back to 2008 form
    Carmona – Gives up a HR and then settles down while Wang implodes
    Pavano- Perfect through 4.SMH
    Verlander- Continuing from a terrible last year, all of a sudden faces the Yanks and is the Verlander of 2007.

    Whats next Dontrelle Willis starts against us and throws a complete game?

    • Tom Zig

      A curse doesn’t exist unless you believe it to exist.

      • http://forums.projectcovo.com/images/smilies/e6omir.gif Expired Milk

        I never said it was a curse but more of things just haven’t been going the Yankees way at all. Believe it or not there is some luck involved in sports and they Yanks have had terrible luck.

    • jonathan

      You have to think that some of that has to do with how terrible we are hitting with RISP. Is it really these pitchers getting it together as much as our lineup not taking advantage of the pitcher when it would really hurt.

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph Pawlikowski

        Didn’t you renounce the Yankees, like, an hour ago?

    • Chris C.

      You think it’s an accident that these pitchers seem to straighten themselves out against the Yankees?

      Maybe if these guys started working the count better, they’d be able to get to some of these starters as they tire out. So far, the only guy I see making them work is Nick Swisher.

      They strike out a ton, don’t move runners over when necessary, and leave a slew of men in scoring position.

      Terrible luck my ass! Some of these guys have no plan when they go to the plate!

      • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

        So far, the only guy I see making them work is Nick Swisher.

        This is untrue. The Yankees have seven players seeing at least 4 pitches per plate appearance: Swisher, Pena, Jeter, Tex, Matsui, Gardner, and Molina. Jorge sees 3.99 P/PA and Damon sees 3.92. The Yankees are seeing plenty of pitches.

        • Chris C.

          “This is untrue. The Yankees have seven players seeing at least 4 pitches per plate appearance: Swisher, Pena, Jeter, Tex, Matsui, Gardner, and Molina”

          Jeter swings at more crap than you can shake a stick at. As does Gardner, after he takes two pitches right down the pipe, and Pena, Molina, and Teixeira haven’t hit a lick yet. So maybe a few look at more pitches than I thought….but they’re STILL resulting in mostly outs!

          Whenever the Yankees have had grand opportunities to score, there is just no confidence in the guy at the plate. Like I said, there are guys on this team that seem to have the same hitting approach whether there’s nobody on base and two outs, or 2nd and 3rd with one out.

          • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

            Jeter swings at more crap than you can shake a stick at. As does Gardner, after he takes two pitches right down the pipe, and Pena, Molina, and Teixeira haven’t hit a lick yet. So maybe a few look at more pitches than I thought….but they’re STILL resulting in mostly outs!

            Well, it seems to be working pretty well for Jeter. I mean, he is hitting .296/.352/.494/.846. Whatever “crap pitches” he’s swinging at seem to be turning into hits. Tex as 13 walks. That’s a good thing. He’s obviously not going to hit .220 for the whole season. The hits will start to fall. Molina is actually hitting well so far, not that it’s going to stay that way, but he’s still hitting decent (all singles though, but a .357 OBP).

            The Yankees approach at the plate is absolutely fine right now. And if I have to say this again, I’m gonna pull my damn hair out…they’re scoring over five runs per game. The offense is doing fine, minus the last two games. It’s the pitching that’s (generally) losing them ball games right now.

            • Chris C.

              “The Yankees approach at the plate is absolutely fine right now.”

              No, it isn’t. They’re operating on talent alone. They don’t move runners over, or do the fundimental things needed to manufacture runs when they’re not coming easy.

              “The offense is doing fine, minus the last two games.”

              You’re just not getting this, are you? The Yankees are a fine hitting team. But a major problem with this offense is that they CANNOT play small ball to manufacture runs when the hits aren’t falling so easily. And I don’t want to hear this “that’s not the way the team is built” crap. That HAS TO BE the way the team operates if they ever expect to win another championship.

              And even when they try to manufacture runs, their manager is clueless. If I see Girardi bunt the 7th or 8th hitter with 1st and 2nd and none out one more time, I’m gonna scream!
              Last week, he had Pena bunting in this situation, with Molina up next. Brilliant. ZERO runs that inning!

            • Chris C.

              “Well, it seems to be working pretty well for Jeter. I mean, he is hitting .296/.352/.494/.846.”

              That’s not working well for Jeter. That is a pretty low OBP by his standards…….almost 40 points lower than his career average. We’re just talking about hitting approach here, not his production. I have no problem with the actual way he’s hitting, but I’ve noticed that his plate command this year is pretty lousy, in comparison to what I’m used to seeing from him.

    • Confused Axl

      You’re exactly right. I think it’s about time to look in the mirror and blame the offense rather than continue to come up with excuses day after day.

      • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

        Since you like to talk about one game situations…was the offense to blame for Saturday’s loss? They fucking hung eleven runs up on the Red Sox. How is that loss the offense’s fault? How many more times this year are the Yankees going to lose after scoring eleven runs? I’m gonna go ahead and say zero.

        • Chris C.

          Since you like to talk about one game situations…was the offense to blame for Saturday’s loss? They fucking hung eleven runs up on the Red Sox. How is that loss the offense’s fault?

          Here’s why……..after hanging 11 runs in one game, they then follow that up with 3 runs in the next two ballgames.
          Nobody said the Yankees can’t hit. They just don’t do the little things that are necessary…….such as moving runners over, or shortening the swing so you don’t strike out with runners on third and less than two outs, which they’ve fucking done countless times so far.

          That is horseshit. There is no reason why a major leaguer should not be able to at least put the ball somewhere in play in those situations. It’s frustrating to watch that.

          • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

            Here’s why……..after hanging 11 runs in one game, they then follow that up with 3 runs in the next two ballgames.

            Yeah, I wasn’t talking about the next two games. And even with the next two games, they’re putting up over five a game. The offense is doing just fine.

            So what if they don’t “move runners over?” THAT STUFF LEADS TO FEWER RUNS THAN SWINGING AWAY. BUNTING. IS. STUPID. The Yankees have TWICE this season bunted to get to Brett Gardner. Think about that. They sacrificed an out to get to BRETT GARDNER. How is that good? The Yankees aren’t a bunting team and that’s a GOOD THING.

            • Chris C.

              So what if they don’t “move runners over?” THAT STUFF LEADS TO FEWER RUNS THAN SWINGING AWAY.

              Overall, perhaps. But when you can’t move runners over in situation where you absolutely have to do it, you’ll get bitten in the ass.

              I’m not talking about bunting, because 80% of the time I hate the bunt call.

              If you win a ballgame 19-4, then lose the next two 3-2 and 4-3, you’ve averaged 8 runs per game.
              But is that really good hitting? Just an example of why you actually have to watch the games, instead of just spewing stats about their average runs per game.

              And no……I’m certainly not excusing their pitching either.

            • Chris C.

              “The Yankees have TWICE this season bunted to get to Brett Gardner. Think about that”

              I don’t have to think about it……I’ve seen it. Sacrificing on occasion is not a bad thing as long as the manager knows what the fuck he’s doing, and when he’s doing it. Girardi clearly does not.

            • Chris C.

              The Yankees have TWICE this season bunted to get to Brett Gardner. Think about that. They sacrificed an out to get to BRETT GARDNER. How is that good? The Yankees aren’t a bunting team and that’s a GOOD THING

              You do realize that fundimental and situational hitting is not all about bunting, don’t you?

      • http://www.riveraveblues.com Joseph Pawlikowski

        Look, you can trash the offense if you want, because they’re not playing to their potential. But Verlander was absolutely disgusting last night. Did you watch the game? He was dropping 95, 96 mph fastballs with regularity and the ump was giving him the curveball low, which is nearly impossible to hit. He threw about 70 percent of his pitches for strikes, so waiting out the count wouldn’t have been a good strategy.

        The Yanks offense could be better, but to say that Verlander didn’t have his A game is to not have watched the game.

  • jonathan

    I live in boston and I realize why the red sox are so easy to like. No one even after they won the world series ever expects much from them and here they are on a 11-game winning streak, they dont have high expectations. The Yankees go out and spend 430 million dollars to sure up there pitching and batting with RISP and guess what there major problems are this year: PITCHING AND HITTING WITH RISP!! THIS TEAM IS TERRIBLE….I AM TRADING IN MY YANKEE CAP FOR A SOX CAP…SO MUCH EASIER TO BELIEVE YOUR TEAM IS GOING TO SUCK AND HAVE THEM SUCCEED. Then to believe they are going to to well and blow!

    • pat

      See ya later. Don’t Let the door hit you where the good lord split you.

    • manimal

      Seriously though, a lot of my friends in school were like “We swept the yanks! But in reality they are just too good and are going to win the division.”

    • hamburger helper

      You had me until “expectations.” Seriously. I said it yesterday about the Yanks and their increasingly lofty expectations. It’s one thing to say “anything less than a title is a failure” after 2001, but it’s another thing entirely to go out there and put that sort of pressure on yourselves and the newcomers. Set achievable, measurable and more immediate goals: Hit with RISP. Get the ball in the air with runners on 1st and 3rd with less than 2 outs. Pitch from the stretch with a runner on third and Berroa playing in shallow left. ;)

      • hamburger helper

        “it’s another thing entirely to go out there 8+ years after winning your last WS” is what I meant to say – sorry…

      • Chris C.

        “It’s one thing to say “anything less than a title is a failure” after 2001, but it’s another thing entirely to go out there and put that sort of pressure on yourselves and the newcomers.”

        Yeah, sure. Blame the fans for that, despite the fact that the front office emblazens it into the brains of every guy in the clubhouse.

        It wouldn’t be the least bit surprising to me if Hank Steinbrenner actually has a plaque on the wall of the new clubhouse that reads, “anything less than a title is a failure!”

        • Chris C.

          Oh, my bad, Hamburger. I think you were blaming the organization for that. My apologies.

          • hamburger helper

            Yep, Chris. It’s the Yankees doing that. The media and, by extension, the whole of New York, just set their expectations accordingly. Nothing wrong with that. I’m just saying it starts with the Yanks. No worries on the confusion. I probably could have made it more clear!

            • Chris C.

              That’s why none of the free agents that have come here over the past 8-10 years have performed as well as at their previous stop.

    • jsbrendog

      you know what really grinds my gears? fans like you jonathon.

  • http://www.new.facebook.com/home.php?ref=home#/profile.php?id=594331910&ref=name Jamal G.

    Anybody who blames the Yankee offense and does not give the credit to Justin Verlander is an ass. In that fourth inning his last nine fastballs to Robinson Cano, Nick Swisher and Melky Cabrera were all 98-99 MPH. I’m sorry, but with the curveball he had last night there is just no hitting that.

    • Bo

      So they should tip their cap now to every major league pitcher?

      What happened to grinding out a starter even when he has great stuff?

      Don’t make it seem like Verlander is Cy Young here. Check his stats. he isn’t.

      • V

        Wait, did you WATCH the game?

        I didn’t realize his stats were pitching. All I saw was a 98-99 fastball, curveball, and changeup, with excellent command. Toss in an umpire giving him 3 inches off the plate, and that’s pretty damn untouchable (See: Joba Chamberlain, at Red Sox, 7/25/08).

        His #1 problem is command – last night, he didn’t have that problem. The #1 difference between last night and his disaster vs. the Angels was first pitch strikes. The Angels start: http://www.cbssports.com/mlb/g.....22_DET@ANA

        Yes, you ‘tip your cap’ when a pitcher puts up an excellent pitching performance. And hope he doesn’t bring his ‘A’ game next time.

      • Joe R

        Thats not every major league pitcher. Verlander was throwing extremely good last night. Its hard to work counts when the guy throws 75% strikes. It doesnt matter what his stats say. Last night he pitched very very well.

  • guy

    with all the crying for a-rod’s return (and then, order will be restored to the universe). i wonder exactly how many men he would have had onbase if he were batting in the 4-spot.

    i realize that having him in the lineup might change the pitches to the #3 hitter — BUT, i’m not convinced that missing arod is the only problem.

    • Bo

      Because whoever plays 3b here is killing the ball???

      If you don’t think he’ll change the lineup when he comes back, you’re a fool.

      • guy

        the point is, i suppose, on a statistics-oriented blog — i’m curious about the stats; not what i think.

        besides, no 3rd baseman is hitting cleanup.

        he will certainly affect what pitches the 3-spot sees; but, i’m not sure how to quantify it.

        as to whether or not i’m a fool… at times. at times.

        • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

          Well, I don’t know how good of a comparison it is, but I was just looking in Between the Numbers and in the chapter about lineup construction, they talked about the Barry Bonds/Jeff Kent tandem. After the Giants switched Bonds from the three to the four and Kent from the four to the three, Bonds saw his walk rate go up a bit, his IBB rate go up a lot, and his HR rate go down by 4 ABs. There’s no detailed information in the book about what Kent did, but looking up his batting order splits on B-R:

          4th: .297/.354/.484/.838 in 84 games, 376 PAs
          3rd: .333/.387/.667/1.054 in 67 games, 305 PAs

          I know A-Rod isn’t Bonds, but he’s still a good hitter so I think we would expect Tex to start seeing some more hittable pitches.

  • Joe R

    I like the new official banner. It’s so…official.

  • BklynJT

    The Yankees are the new slump busters aka leopard print thong for struggling pitchers.

    C.Lee – check
    J.Verlander – check

  • Confused Axl

    I don’t understand why we always have to sugar coat everything on here? Let’s be honest with one another. Sabathia gave up 4 runs. If the shoe was on the other foot and our offense scored 4 runs…everyone hear has said in the past “that should be enough to win” and you would call that a decent offensive day. How can it be a good offensive day while also being a good pitching day? Yeah, he gave up “cheap hits” or whatever…but what is a “cheap hit”? A hit is a hit. A run is a run. He gave up a big blowing bomb too. Yeah, “it was one bad pitch”. Ok?? He still made it.

    And Verlander was “magnificent”. Maybe he was…but it’s like the boy who cried wolf at this point. We say everybody was amazing everytime they face us. Are they really though? Or is it just one more lame excuse to protect our miserable patchy offense?? “But Axl, we average 5 runs a game!!” Yeah? And what are we hitting with RISP on the year? Where do we rank in that? Hitting 5 solo home runs in a game is nice…if the other team isn’t hitting the crap out of our pitchers day-in and day-out.

    Verlander was “magnificent”. Cliff Lee was “marvelous”. “Fausto Carmona “had it going” in his start. All of these guys have struggled mightily in the recent past…yet they all seem to throw gems and come out of their struggles when they face our team?? Another coincidence?? How many coincidences are we going to brand with this team?? “We start off slow every year and dig ourselves into a hole and have inconsisent pitching and hitting regardless of new acquisitions but it’s only a coincidence”. Give me a break. How??

    All of these “coincidences” and no real answers. Maybe they aren’t coincidences and they’re just excuses.

    • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

      “But Axl, we average 5 runs a game!!” Yeah? And what are we hitting with RISP on the year? Where do we rank in that? Hitting 5 solo home runs in a game is nice…if the other team isn’t hitting the crap out of our pitchers day-in and day-out.

      Shouldn’t that tell you that run scoring is not exactly dependent on how teams hit w/RISP?

      • Confused Axl

        In that one game and one example I listed…sure. But that’s one game…and one example.
        Sadly, that was one of the better offensive games…

        • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

          If the team is averaging five a game at the plate and still losing, doesn’t the blame fall on the pitching and defense for losing? I don’t get why people are so pissy with the offense because they had a bad two game stretch. They scored eleven runs off of the Red Sox on Saturday. That’s good no matter who you’re playing. The offense is doing fine right now, even with RISP issues. And, because of how small a sample size we have right now, those RISP numbers are due for a positive correction.

          • Confused Axl

            One would think…but the team wasn’t especially good all last year with RISP either…so the fact we’re starting off doing the same thing we did for the entire year last year…doesn’t really give me much confidence that it’s going to change just yet…especially with everything else going so very wrong for the team…

            • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

              The team last year also missed A-Rod for what 20 games? Posada for most of the season, a healthy Matsui for most of the season and Jeter missed time as well. This year, Posada and Matsui are hitting well and (presumably) healthy, Jeter is hitting well and (presumably) healthy, and Rodriguez is due back in what? Two weeks? Patience, man, patience. Plus, Tex is a slow starter who gets better as the season goes along–once the hits start falling for him (they will), his production will shoot even higher up.

              • Confused Axl

                Yeah I know…I know the hitting will hopefully come around…and I know the pitching won’t be as miserable all year…

                My question is WHY. Why does it ever even have to be like this? Let alone constantly every year. Inconsistencies, starting off slow constantly…and it happens with new acquisitions too! Do they just blend in or something?? When you see that ALL starters are shaky and inconsistent at the same time…and year after year new acquisitions are blending right in as well…you have to really wonder what the hell is going on don’t you??

                And that kid said it best up above. Verlander pitches “amazing”, Carmona “a gem”, Cliff Lee “is back to 08 form now”, who’s next? Dontrell Willis is going to throw a perfect game against us?? I mean when does it end??

                • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

                  My question is WHY. Why does it ever even have to be like this? Let alone constantly every year. Inconsistencies, starting off slow constantly…and it happens with new acquisitions too!

                  Because it’s fucking baseball. That’s what happens. Do you really think the Blue Jays are going to end the year as the AL East’s leader? This happens every year and the Yankees always right themselves. It’s still April. They have all of May, June, July, August, and September to correct themselves. Step back from the ledge, alright?

                • Confused Axl

                  Red Sox are actually at the top with a better winning percentage and less losses. And do I think they could remain at the top? The way they are playing…yes I do. We actually played fairly well in the 2nd half the past few years…but our first halfs were so miserable that it prevented us from winning the division in 07 and making the playoffs in 08. Before that we dug holes and we were able to climb out of them…but like I said, each year it’s gotten harder and harder to climb out because these other teams are getting better and better.

                • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

                  Didn’t know the Sox took over the top spot, my bad.

                  Regardless, I’d be willing to bet quite a lot of money that the standings today, on April 28th, will be a whole hell of a lot different come Sept. 28th. You talk about other teams getting better but the Yankees are also about to get a lot better. Think about it: Chien Ming Wang was literally historically bad over his first three starts, right? There is probably ZERO chance that Phil Hughes is as bad for the next 4-5 starts, that’s an improvement right there. They’re about to get the best hitter in baseball who isn’t named “Pujols” back, and the pitching can only go up from here. The Yankees are a better team than the way they’re playing right now. Trust me.

                • Confused Axl

                  Of course they’re a better team than they are playing…they really couldn’t play any worse unless they actually tried.

                  I have faith that the team will do better. I’m not throwing in the towel. I’m more frustrated how this happens year after year. That’s all. It’s just ridiculous.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=15305165&ref=profile Doug

      Have you ever taken a stats course in high school or college?

      Are you familiar with the concept of statistical significance?

      • Confused Axl

        Yeah. I know what statistical significance means. I just don’t particularly understand how it is relevant here. Perhaps you took my one example too literally. That was one game…but it pretty much is a metaphor for what’s going on so far this season. Solo shots galore. Barely any hits with RISP or when we really need it (down late in the innings). If we used that “clutch” formula somebody came up with…our entire team would be at the bottom of the barrel.

        • Confused Axl

          Besides perhaps Jeter

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=15305165&ref=profile Doug

          Do you mean “microcosm?” It’s not really a metaphor if it actually happened.

          I believe statistical significance is relevant here, because three losses to three ace starters is such a small sample size that it would be hasty and foolish to attempt to draw any meaningful conclusions about the balance of the season.

          I’m not sure if “the boy who cried wolf” is the correct literary allusion to compare this to, either. The boy who cried wolf cried out for help when no help was needed. In the end, nobody listened to him because they were sick of his shit. Or perhaps it is on a different level, that’s my immediate impression.

          • Confused Axl

            Allegory is a subset of a metaphor…which is what I was referring to.

            “The boy who cried wolf” wasn’t meant to be taken as literally as you have seemed to for some reason. If you’d like to get even more literal…there was no wolf either in my comparison. Oh no! What I meant by it was…we’re constantly coming up with excuses and giving credit to opposing pitchers when perhaps it’s our hitting that lost the game this time. But since we’re constantly crediting other pitchers when they shouldn’t be credited…even if Verlander “pitched amazing” I would second guess it due to the excuses that have been thrown around in the past. It might not be an exact replica of the story of “the boy who cried wolf” but it has a similar feel to it.

            It seems to me like you skipped everything that made sense in my post…and knowing that I was right in it all…you decided to try and dissect random grammatical errors and nonsense to talk about instead. Listen, I know I speak the truth and it bothers people. But don’t be so obvious with nonsense. The team stinks bad right now. I brought it to light. You’re all mad so “let’s rip apart his grammar and choice of phrases and words on a message board since we can’t really argue about the Yankees because he’s absolutely right!”

            Go teach a class or something…this is not the place…

            • Evan

              A lot of people feel the same way you do. They aren’t pitching, they aren’t hitting with RISP, they can’t get the job done when they need too. But the reality is that it is only April and they have plenty of time to get their act together. If the end of June rolls around and they still are in the same situation, then it’s time to get worried but this team has too much talent to let that happen. Just like in ST (I know, it’s only ST) the team flirted with .500 baseball then once it “clicked” they won what 15 in a row or something. We just need all of our gears to “click” and we will be on the right path. Maybe it starts tonight with Hughes tossing a gem.

              • Confused Axl

                I hope you’re right. And you are right that it could happen at anytime. The only thing that gets me going is that they did this last year…and they fucked around at the beginning of 07 too. I just don’t get it. And it makes it even more frustrating when you have new acquisitions year after year who seem to “join in” on the party of performing like crap too. It’s just really bad that’s all. The most aggrivating part is that it doesn’t make sense. But you’re right…it could turn around…but recent history shows the inconsistencies hurting us more and more year after year.

  • Brendan

    Now, being the complete optimist I am, what if Hughes does really well in the (most likely) few starts he gets up here? I guess he just has to go back down if CMW appears to be ready, right? Not sure how I feel about that.

    • Confused Axl

      Well it will take a while for Wang to convince anyone anything. And with Joba’s pitch counts and several more injuries to come…I wouldn’t worry about where Hughes will be…he’ll be up here quite a bit…well, until he, himself, gets injured too that is…

      • http://actyankee.blogspot.com Matt ACTY

        well, until he, himself, gets injured too that is…

        And you wonder why people think you’re irrational…

        • Confused Axl

          How is that irrational? A lot of our team is getting injured so far…and a lot of our team has gotten injured year after year…including Phil Hughes on several occasions…

          I don’t see how that’s “irrational” one bit? It’s actually a very likely scenario…

      • Evan

        You’ve got to have faith brotha.

        • Confused Axl

          I know but it’s so frustrating!! Ahhh!!!

          • Brendan

            Maybe you can borrow some of my optimism.

          • Evan

            It is frustrating, especially when you devote 3+ hours to them each day and they under perform and get handed another loss but that’s what makes them so great because when they do start winning it’s so much fun to watch them and be invested in them. Like any good thing in life, you have to take the bad with the good. When they are playing excellent baseball down the stretch and dominating their way to October we will all look back and laugh. Don’t be a bandwagon fan. Everyone is frustrated, but we deal with it.

  • Klemy

    It’s really hard to be optimistic when they aren’t playing well. Me, I take a game or two off when I get this frustrated just to refresh myself. I can only yell at the TV so much over a few days before my wife starts to get irritated. lol

  • LiveFromNewYork

    I think Po is def part of the pitcher’s problems esp AJ and CC. I think they look much more comfortable with Hava