Yanks end 9-1 homestand with 7-5 victory

Game 98 Spillover Thread II
Open Thread: Wang's injury, Hall of Fame day

When the All Star Break ended, the Yanks found themselves three games behind Red Sox. After a humiliating three-game sweep at the hands of the Angels in Anaheim before the break, the Bombers were looking for a hot start to the second half.

Ten days later, they have delivered. The beat the A’s 7-5 this afternoon on five two-out RBIs, and in doing so, they wrapped up a 9-1 homestand. They have also gained 5.5 games on the Red Sox since the break and head south to Tampa with a 2.5-game lead in the AL East. If not for a bad 0-2 pitch from Alfredo Aceves yesterday, they could have gone 10-0 to start the second half. Still, I’ll take 9-1.

Today’s game started off inauspiciously. Before the Yanks had an at-bat, Sergio Mitre had given up four hits and two runs. That would be a short-lived deficit. Single, walk, strike out, pop out, single, walk, double. 4-2 Yanks.

The big blow in the bottom of the first came off the bat of Robinson Cano. Struggling mightily with runners in scoring position this year, Cano lined a bases-clearing double into deep center field to give the Yanks their lead. It was a key hit in the game.

As the innings wore on, Mitre pitched a decent enough game. His final line was fairly mediocre — 5 IP, 9 H, 4 ER, 1 K — but he benefited from three double plays and didn’t walk anyone. He’ll continue to make starts out of the fifth spot in the rotation until and unless the Yanks make a move. I’d rather see Phil Hughes transition back into the rotation, but Mitre is giving the Yanks a chance to win. The team is 2-0 in his first two starts.

Briefly, in the sixth, the Yanks ran into a spot of trouble. In the fourth, Derek Jeter had failed to get a runner in from third with less than two outs, and it nearly came back to haunt them. After Mitre surrendered a lead-off single to Kurt Suzuki, Phil Coke came in to face the A’s lefties. Ryan Sweeney flew out to left, and Daric Barton just beat out a relay throw to avoid a double play. With two outs, Mark Ellis lined a ball off of his shoe tops into the left field seats to give the A’s a 5-4 lead.

Again, this lead would prove short-lived. In the bottom of the 6th, Jeter again came to the plate with runners on second and third and one out. This time, an RBI single plated two runs to give the Yanks a lead they would not surrender. Mark Teixeira would, two batters later, give the Yanks a two-run lead.

Things got a bit hairy in the 8th though. After a 1-2-3 seventh and a K to start the 8th, Phil Hughes ran into a spot of trouble. He allowed a walk to Ryan Sweeney and a double to Daric Barton after a long AB. In came Brian Bruney, and we all held our breaths. Bruney, shakey of late, got a huge K, and then the Sandman came in for a four-out save. Nomar Garciaparra tapped back weakly to Mariano, and Rivera ran through the A’s in the ninth. Game, set, match.

The Red Sox and John Smoltz had just lost to the Orioles. The Rays had just lost to the Blue Jays. As Michael Kay said to end the broadcast, “All is right in the pinstriped world for Joe Girardi and his clan.”

Game 98 Spillover Thread II
Open Thread: Wang's injury, Hall of Fame day
  • BigBlueAL

    Quickest post-game thread ever!!

    • Jack West Jr.

      When Mariano comes in during the 8th inning, you can pretty much start writing the game story then.

    • Salty Buggah

      Yea that was super quick.

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

    Yankees win and life is good.

    Everything else–Boston losing and Tampa losing–well, that’s just gravy.

  • Scooter

    Wang flies to Alabama tomorrow – will have another MRI at Dr Andrews on Tuesday

    • Joe B.

      That’s not exactly a good sign.

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

      Uh oh.

    • Salty Buggah

      We are 2-2, can we be 3-3?

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Benjamin Kabak

      I’m not going to delete this now, but please review the RAB Commenting Guidelines. Not only is this an off-topic tip that should be e-mailed to us, but we wrote about this news on Friday.

  • Peter Lacock

    Imagine if Hughesy would have started and done the same.
    40 pitches to get 4 outs.
    I didn’t see it but it appears that every batter made him work.

    • jeter

      jun 14 1 IP 21 pitches
      jun 17 2 IP 24 pitches
      jun 20 1 IP 11 pitches
      jun 23 2 IP 27 pitches
      jun 28 1.1 IP 16 pitches
      jun 30 1 IP 9 pitches

      JUL 03 0.2 IP 15 pitches
      JUL 04 1 IP 8 pitches
      JUL 08 1 IP 13 pitches
      JUL 09 1.1 IP 19 pitches
      JUL 12 1.1 IP 26 pitches
      JUL 17 2 IP 40 pitches
      JUL 19 1 IP 13 pitches
      JUL 22 1 IP 16 pitches
      JUL 23 2 IP 28 pitches

      and today 1.1 IP 40

      • Steve in PDX

        maybe he’s trying to stretch himself out to get into the rotation…

  • Salty Buggah

    We have a tough stretch ahead of us. I hope we can win 2 of 3 at least in Tampa.

    I hope our good starting pitching continues, we’ll need it. Also, I hope our offense can deliver again.

    • Zach

      Molina is probably going to start 2 games in Tampa so thats one less bat in the lineup. Keeping Crawford/Upton off the basepaths is key

      • Dela G


        we have to keep those two from stealing every damn base

        • Steve H

          Rather just keep them off base to begin with.

          • Dela G

            eh, thats true too

      • Steve O.

        Well, Posada’s thrown out 28% of baserunners, while Molina has thrown out 24% of baserunners. Although it’s a SSS for Molina, the point stands. Mauer’s thrown out 33%. Posada’s not as big of a liabily on defense as some people claim him to be.

        Posada’s bat in the lineup and his defense >>>>>>> Molina’s bat in the lineup and his defense.

        • Zach

          Molina’s had 21 SB attemps, Posada had 74. Molina threw out 44% last year, and has a 40% mark.

          I didnt say I want Posada to sit, he’ll catch 1 game and DH the two other. Matsui is 2 for his last 20

          • Steve O.

            I said it was a SSS, but my point was that his added offense would be better for the team than the difference in their defense. Posada gets a bad rep on his defense, when in reality he’s not that bad. Either way, Carl Crawford rarely gets thrown out.

            Matsui + Posada >>>>>>>>> Posada + Molina.

        • toad

          Deterrent effect is important.

          Mauer has had .74 attempts against him per 9 innings.

          Posada’s number is 1.47, double Mauer’s. Molina is better at 1.31, though that does not, in general, make up for the batting difference.

          • Steve O.

            Yeah, I know, I just threw it in there because it was convenient. Most people don’t realize that defense at catcher varies and so does the circumstances. Posada’s D gets a bad rep and opposing managers ran on him early to test his arm.

  • ShuutoHeat

    Funny thing my friend mentioned…

    With the 4 games against the A’s, whoever scored first turned out to be the loser in all 4 games.

    Glad to see O’s beat Smoltz and the Sux.
    Toronto finally picked up one on Tampa, although they were humiliated in the previous two games.

    • JGS

      Interesting to see what the Sox do when Wakefield comes off the DL if Smoltz is still getting hammered around every time out.

      • Scooter

        Gotta think Smoltz will end up in the pen. Until today, Smoltz was getting clobbered the 3rd time through the order – Sox can hope he could be more effective in 1 or 2 inning stints.

        The real question is – post-shoulder surgery, how often could Smoltz appear? Can you use him on back-to-back days?

        He got smoked today – 5 doubles + a home run + 3 singles in 5 innings.

        • ShuutoHeat

          I don’t think Smoltz could be used on back to back days out of the pen. I could be wrong though…

          I’m being conservative, he’s past his prime and the surgery during the off season doesn’t help.

          If he was in his 30s, then I would say yea go ahead…but age has has caught up with him.

  • Steve O.

    The Yanks shouldn’t be worried about just their “small ball” part of the game, but their starting pitching also. Shields, Kazmir, and Garza are tough pitchers to face. I’m fully aware that Kazmir hasn’t been all that great this year, but he’s been injured and can still put up a good start. Good thing the Yanks will counter with AJ, CC, and Joba.

    • Zach

      Kazmir went on the DL, proclaimed himself healthy, comes back and still getting lit up. Shields and Garza are still tough, and the Yankees have to bring their A game

      • Steve O.

        He’s their Wang. Kazmir was never good at giving length, now he’s just not very good, but I expect him to turn around.

        • Zach

          all of the sudden hes going to turn it around? if he got on a little roll of quality starts off the DL then ok, but getting lit up 2 out of your last 3 starts doesnt give me much hope that he fixed whatevers wrong

          • Steve O.

            I don’t mean a turnaround next start. He’s not going to go from 5 innings 5 ER to 7 innings 2 ER. It’s about him being a good pitcher in the past and his track record begs to differ. I doubt he never turns it around and has to find a job elsewhhere. You’re twisting my words to make it seem like I’m expecting a Cy Young performance.

  • DCR

    Girardi pulled Mitre way too early. Outside of the first inning he wasn’t getting hit hard. Balls were just finding holes.

  • GG

    We may be in first, but everyone knows rotation depth is a huge problem with this squad, and it could cost us later in the year. Joba won’t be starting all year, and Andy could become a question mark rather quickly. We need AT LEAST one more solid starter

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

      Why can’t fans every be happy for a moment with what they have?

      • jjyank

        True that. Life is good, we’re 2.5 up on the Sox, we have the best record in the AL, and we’ve got a lot of momentum going into an important road trip.

      • Todd

        And, name a team that has rotation depth… I think every team in the league has that problem.

      • Jersey

        People forget something really important: we’ve gotten to this point largely with an ineffective Wang and an only marginally better Phil Hughes as the 5th starter for much of the year.

        Mitre is almost an upgrade compared to what those two delivered in their starts, and therefore, in a way, the rotation right now is in its best shape all season. I understand the injury and Joba-limit concerns, but for at least the next few weeks we’re looking good.

        • Tony

          You know Mitre has a 6 ERA, right?

          • Jersey

            Hughes’ ERA as a starter was 5.45.

          • Jersey

            …and you know Wang’s story.

    • whozat

      This ain’t the open thread. Keep it on topic.

  • boobie

    if joba hits a limit and is sent to the bullpen does that allow hughes to be stretched out to become the 4th starter? We don’t have a game 4 (in playoffs) starter right now if Joba hits a limit.

    • 27 this year

      I think innings limits are kinda good for protecting arms but I think the whole Verducci thing is BS.

      Like I have stated from a post I read, there are three outcomes for a pitcher. Get better/stay just as good (lester), get worse, or be injured. Verducci says pitchers experience a greater risk of being ineffective or injured but that is going to happen based on basic probability. While my view is a little simplistic, basing everything on innings doesn’t show stress levels or things like that. When Joba pitched out of the bullpen, those were high leverage, max effort, stressful situations while as a starter, fewer innings are as stressful. Plus, Joba has never been really overworked in a start. I don’t know what Cash wants to do but I just think hard and fast innings limits are useless.

  • mason

    any word on who’s coming up for gardner? pena’s playing cf for scranton tonight.. ajax out of the lineup. maybe he’s on a plane to tampa?

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