Poll: What was your favorite moment of the second half?

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Every year, there are certain moments in the season that remind us just why baseball is the greatest game on Earth, and this year is no different. Sure, lots of us take this silly game far too seriously, but that’s only because we love it so much. We’re lucky to be fans of the greatest franchise in sports history, as the Yankees give us more great memories than we can handle at times.

RAB readers already voted Mariano Rivera‘s bases loaded walk their favorite moment of the first half, and I figured now was a good time to see what everyone’s favorite moment of the second half was. Here’s a few of the highlights:

August 2nd: Melky Cabrera hits for the cycle (video)
With co-centerfield Brett Gardner out with a broken thumb, Melky was going to be a full-time player for the foreseeable future. He hit the first pitch he saw from Mark Buehrle and deposited into the bullpen for a three run homer, then doubled over the head of rightfielder Jermaine Dye two innings later. El Leche ended Buehrle’s outing the very next inning, dropping an RBI single into center to give the Yanks a two-run lead. With the Yanks maintaining that same lead in the 9th inning, Melky worked a full count off reliever Scott Linebrink before lifting a pitch into the right-centerfield gap. Dye misplayed the ball and it went all the way to wall, and the result was the first cycle by a Yankee since Tony Fernandez way back in 1995.

August 7th: A-Rod‘s 15th inning walk-off vs. Boston (video)
In the second game of what would prove to be the biggest series of the season for both teams, AJ Burnett and Josh Beckett matched zeroes through 7+ innings before each bullpen chipped in another 7+ innings of scoreless ball. A loss would have brought the Red Sox to within 2.5 games of the AL East title, a win would have pushed the Yanks ahead with a commanding 4.5 game lead. Alex Rodriguez, 1-for-6 in the game up to that point, stepped to the plate with two outs and a runner on second against Junichi Tazawa, who was making his big league debut. After taking the first three pitches, A-Rod jumped all over a hanging curve and sent it into the visitor’s bullpen for a 15th inning walk-off win. If nothing else, watch the video just to listen to sound of the ball of the bat. B-e-a-utiful.

August 9th: Damon & Tex go back-to-back off Dan Bard (video and video)
With the first three games of the series already in the win column, pretty much everyone was content with taking three of four after Phil Coke served up a go-ahead, two run jack to Victor Martinez in the top of the 8th. Johnny Damon and Mark Teixeira had different ideas. After two quick groundouts, Damon took a 1-0 pitch from the untouchable Dan Bard and sent it into the Yanks’ bullpen to tie the score. Two pitches later, Tex hit a curveball into orbit before it eventually settled into the second deck in right. It was only early August, but for all intents and purposes, the division race was over the instant Tex got the bat on the ball.

Sept. 11th: Derek Jeter becomes the Yankees all-time hit leader (video)
After a four week long assault on AL pitching that saw him pick up 44 hits in just 102 at-bats, Derek Jeter returned home to the Bronx on Sept. 7th just three hits shy of tying Lou Gehrig for the most hits in franchise history. After a quick 0-for-12 skid, Jeter tied the Iron Horse on a Wednesday night (with me in attendance), and came to the park Friday looking to pass him (Thursday was on off-day). O’s rookie Chris Tillman got Jeter swinging at strike three in the first, but Jeter returned to the plate to leadoff the third. Tillman’s first two pitches were outside the zone, and like any good hitter, Jeter took the 2-0 fastball and ripped it to right in typical Jeterian fashion for a single. With 2,722 hits and counting, Derek Jeter stood alone as the Yanks’ all-time hit king.

Those are just some of the highlights of the first half. Vote on your favorite below, but if you think another moment was the best of the second half – maybe the Sabathia-Verander duel, or clinching the division against Boston, or one of the various walk-off hits – use the “Add an Answer” button to write in your own favorite moment. And to the jerk that added the racist word to the poll last time, don’t do it again. I’ll just delete it, and I’m sure your bosses at Goldman Sachs in Jersey City wouldn’t appreciate you trolling blogs mid-day.

What was your favorite moment of the second half?
Total Votes: 1332 Started: October 1, 2009 1 = Added by a guest Back to Vote Screen

Update (3:22pm): The Castillo Dropped Ball happened in early June people. First half.

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Girardi 'the man' but not for an extension yet
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  • http://www.puristbleedspinstripes.com Rebecca-Optimist Prime

    Interesting results when only one person has voted =P

    I think that the whole Boston sweep should be an option…and clinching at home

    • Tom Zig

      The Boston Sweep would be my 2nd favorite moment

      A-rod’s HR was just all kinds of awesome.

      • AJ’s chin music ensemble

        hahahaha I say: which sweep??? There we 2 in the Bronx in the 2nd half….BUCK FOSTON!!!!

  • the artist formerly known as (sic)

    I’m going with A-Rod’s walkoff. It was a dagger in their hearts; Simmons was sullen; I was there. Lots of ass was kicked.

    • Tom Zig

      color me jealous.

    • The Artist

      +1

    • Thomas

      +1. In my opinion, it was easily the best game of the year with a 0-0 tie entering the bottom of the 15th. Even if the game wasn’t against the Sox with the division on the line, the game would have still been all kinds of awesome.

    • http://kierstenschmidt.com Kiersten

      Agreed. I was there too and it made sitting through that whole thing completely and totally worth it.

  • Tom Zig

    What did you vote for, Mike?

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

      Damon & Tex. I base these decisions on how fast I jump off the couch and how loud I scream. A-Rod was unfairly handicapped because it was late at night and I was tired.

      • Mike HC

        In that case, my favorite moment while watching a Yankee game was when I was sitting on a friends couch and he decided to tell me exactly what he did the night before on the exact spot I was sitting.

  • Moshe Mandel

    Damon and Tex because I was there. It punctuated the sweep, and was great after the Sox had thought they were right back in it with the Martinez homer. If I had not been at that game, I likely would have picked the A-Rod homer.

    • http://www.theyankeeuniverse.com/ Eric

      The A-Rod homer was not as exciting for me as the back-to-backers off of Mr. Untouchable. The A-Rod blast was off a rookie who was called up from the minors who was not even supposed to pitch. Plus, at that point in the game, I was just rooting for it to end, and it seemed inevitable that the Yanks would win (they were coming close to scoring in the last few innings.).

      The homers off of Bard were a total punch in the gut to the Red Sox, who had just gotten their hopes back after Martinez’s shot. They went from the highest of the high to the lowest of the low. Bill Simmons’ tweets during that game tell the whole story:

      10:41 PM: Welcome to the Red Sox, Victor Martinez! I’d like to thank NYY for inexplicably pitching Phil Coke for this entire inning.

      10:48 PM: Note to America: Meet the Boston Red Sox closer from 2011 through 2015 (and hopefully beyond), Mr. Daniel Bard.

      10:53 PM: OK, this is devastating. Bard was my favorite subplot of the season. I can’t even type.

      11:05 PM: Note to America. Reacquaint yourself with the NY Yankees closer from 1997 through 2015 (and hopefully beyond), Mr. Mariano Rivera!

    • Rocky Road Redemption (formerly RAB poster)

      I loved both games, but when Damon and Tex went back to back it was more than just a dramtic HR. It was a dramatic, division race ending comeback. Plus it was more unlikely. Fucking awesome.

  • The Artist

    My favorite moment was when Mike posted that he beat TSJC in his fantasy league.
    *pumps fist*

  • Sean C

    I’m one of the few who voted for Melky’s hit-for-the-cycle. Being a fan from Central Illinois and unable to afford the Yes Network/Directv, I don’t get to see much Yankee baseball. I admit am biased on this vote because I was actually at that game in Chicago, and it seemed as if my dad and I were the only two Yankee fans in our section. When Melky was legging out that Triple, we probably sounded like Ralphie from “A Christmas Story” with all of the incoherent cussing and screaming.

  • http://bronxbaseballdaily.com Matt ACTY/BBD

    A-Rod’s walk off.

  • http://twitter.com/JamalG_BB Jamal G.

    I say ARod’s dinger over that of Damon and Teixeira’s just because the former moment occurred – in my opinion – during the greatest game of the 2009 season.

  • Mike HC

    Gotta give love to Jeter here. Passing Gehrig is All-time great, whereas the others are considerably smaller scale

  • Mike HC

    How about Melky’s reaction/celebration after hitting for the cycle. While the cycle itself is not a favorite moment of mine, his reaction was priceless

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      SUCK MY NUTS!!!!!!

      • Charlie

        ¡chupas mis huevos!

  • Will77

    Its a tie for me between A-Rod and Jeter… Jeter passing Gehrig is probably my ‘favorite’, as I just got into baseball when Jeter came up and its amazing that he stands with such legends in Yankee history.

    A-Rod gets it for most exciting and most celebrating/reaction. I was at my friends bar for the extra innings, and no one left until that game was over and we were reacting to every pitch for at least 5 innings.

  • jsbrendog

    won’t let me add my own but mine is the castillo drop pop and teix scoring from first on it to win the game

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

      Ugh, dude that happened in the first half.

      • Mike HC

        apparantly Axisa remembers

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

          It was in our first half poll.

          • Mike HC

            ha, easy enough. That is probably where I vaguely remembered it from as well then

          • jsbrendog

            my bad haha

            • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              You have shamed us all.

          • Chris

            It was so good, it deserved a second mention.

    • Mike HC

      did that happen in the second half of the season? I can’t remember

  • steve s

    John Sterling’s reaction to Yanks putting in Ian Kennedy in the 8th inning of the last game with the Angels (and then Kennedy getting in and out of trouble).

    • Chris

      Was he flabbergasted? I wasn’t quite sure.

      • steve s

        He was flabbergasted to the 4th power!

  • Z Morris

    My favorite moment of the season…the ONE game that was played at New Yankee Stadium where a homerun was not hit…

    I love homeruns as much as the next guy, I was at the game where Damon and Texiera went back to back, obviously it was great, but in my opinion it reduces the legitimacy of the players accomplishments when they play in a bandbox ballpark

    And hitting well on the road means nothing, people disparage players on Balt and Texas all the time, and now the yankees will join if the new stadium continues to play this way.

    • Mike HC

      has there really only been one game at the new Stadium where a homer has not been hit?

      And the fact that the Yanks are also crushing the ball on the road has everything to do with it.

      • Al from BX

        Yeah it was that game that had a rain delay for over 5 hours when some dude named Craig Stammen shut us out 3 to 0. Joba also pitched but not that bad.

    • Chris

      Home/Road split for the Yankees:

      HR: 136 Home / 105 Away
      3B: 5 Home / 16 Away
      2B: 150 Home / 171 Away

      XBH: 291 Home / 292 Away

      The most interesting thing about the new stadium is that while it’s a good Home Run park, it’s not much of a hitter’s park.

  • Upstate Nick

    Definitely the A-Rod walk off.

    I was also a big fan of Cervelli’s walk off against the Blue Jays on 9/16. It was a low impact game, but I got a real kick out of his reaction when he saw Cano and Melky running toward him and he darted into the outfield trying to get away. Priceless.

  • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    I added my own write in candidate.

    • Tom Zig

      I don’t see “steaks and blowjobs” or “pussytubing” on that list.

    • Riddering

      The dark horse for the Cy!

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        And for the Massachusetts Senate seat special election.

  • AJ’s chin music ensemble

    Definitely the 15th inning walk off…I sat through every moment of that game in the bleachers…my ass sure hurt after the many man many innings…but it was well worth it in the end.

    • kimonizer

      Fabulous typo in that second “many”

      “my ass sure hurt after the many man many innings”

      it could only have been better if you added Mr. Ramirez himself

      “my ass sure hurt after the many man many manny many innings”

      lots of men and lots of dreds over lots of innings and a painful ass

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=siYKRL4I3UA JobaWockeeZ

    A-Rod’s walkoff tied with Damon and Teixeira back to back.
    I mean closer of the future gave up the lead which I felt would be a tough game to come back from. That was pretty epic.

    A-Rod’s walkoff was just as great.

  • Riddering

    I really wanted to vote for A-Rod’s homer because that moment was amazing.

    But the way Damon and Teixeira immediately squashed the joyous Boston dugout and eliminated V-Mart’s heroic, anti-sweep homer was epic.

    Mmmm, I can still taste the tears of Boston. Delicious!

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Mmmm, I can still taste the tears of Boston. Delicious!

      That’s false.

      The tears of Boston taste like a rancid mixture of baked beans, poor hygiene, and inbreeding.

      • Riddering

        You are correct, sir.

        However, when their tears fall in New York the air changes the consistency and they taste like sushi and espresso.

  • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

    I’m mad that 9 of you jackasses voted for the Castillo dropped ball.

    What are we, the BBWAA voting for Edinson Volquez for Rookie of the Year? There are rules here, people.

    • Tom Zig

      it is now at 11

    • http://bronxbaseballdaily.baby-bombers.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/melky-cabrera-317x400.jpg Drew

      My favorite second half memory is when Alex Rodriguez returned from a DL stint from hip surgery and hit the first pitch he saw out of the park!

      • Tom Zig

        Australia invaded France to begin WWII!!

        • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

          WAS IT OVER WHEN THE GERMANS BOMBED PEARL HARBOR??!?!??!

          HELL NO, AND IT AIN’T OVER NOW.

      • Salty Buggah

        damn you Drew

      • Jersey

        My favorite is when Wells pitched that perfect game!

    • Salty Buggah

      I think I should have (not “of” to some of the people) voted for the A-rod 1st pitch of the season HR

    • Ed

      People in this country have enough trouble properly filling out a multiple choice ballot for something as important as voting for the president. You really expect people to catch on to trick answers?

      • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside
      • JMK aka The Overshare

        Most people in this country have enough trouble spending even 3 seconds researching candidates’ views on issues for something important like an election, let alone figure out a ballot. Can you really expect people to catch on to anything that requires even a modicum of thought?

        /can’t wait for my Mayan vacation in 2012

  • Jersey

    I voted ARod’s walkoff, but Bill Simmons’s reaction to the Damon/Tex/Bard home runs is a reason to vote for that instead:

    http://twitter.com/sportsguy33/status/3218881904

    • Riddering

      What was better: that tweet or his tweeting vacation following the sweep?

  • Tom Zig

    I wonder how many ridiculous answers people tried to add.

    • http://bronxbaseballdaily.baby-bombers.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/melky-cabrera-317x400.jpg Drew

      Like when Mussina won his 20th game? For some reason it just won’t go through!!

  • Cam

    Hardest poll ever. Struggling with witnessing history (Jeter), A-Rod walk off (just all kinds of awesome), and Damon and Teix back-to-back (cause I was at that game and going absolutely ape shit. So were the cops, which was great to see). Ahhhhhhh!!!

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Yup, it’s a tough choice.

      Pick none of the above: take the human interest story. Ian Kennedy shows his amazing gutty, gritty spirit and battles through injury to make a triumphant return against the hated Angels.

      Tugs at the heartstrings.

  • Tom Zig

    Update (3:22pm): The Castillo Dropped Ball happened in early June people. First half.

    Semantics

    • http://twitter.com/tsjc68 tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Mike’s an Anti-Semite.

      (That’s what that means, right?)

  • desus

    Mo making it Rain on Kim Jones.

    • Tom Zig

      Michael Kay is jealous

  • Mike

    Jeter breaking the hit record was very special to me, my father passed away earlier that day and he made the day suck slightly less.