After the rain, Yanks drop a close one to KC

Murphy makes DotF history with big night
Yankees sign ninth rounder Taylor Morton
Lightning streaked over the Big K during a rain delay of over two hours. Credit: AP Photo, Orlin Wagner

For the second time this season, the Yankees and Royals sat through a lengthy rain delay, but for the Bombers, the payoff wasn’t worth the two hour and ten minute wait. Despite a ninth inning threat against Joakim Soria, the Yanks couldn’t get a big hit, and Billy Butler‘s 5th inning home run stood as the winning run in a 4-3 game. The Yanks played their fifth one-run game in a row, and as Tampa Bay and Boston both lost, the AL East playoff picture stays static for another day.

The Bad: Dustin Moseley and the Curse of the RISP

Billy Butler's fifth inning home run amidst the rain drops held up. Credit: AP Photo, Orlin Wagner

After three solid starts and a one-hit relief appearance against the Royals last month, Dustin Moseley couldn’t command his stuff. It took him nearly 60 pitches to get through the first six outs of the game, and the Royals plated three runs on a double and a bunch of seeing-eye singles in the bottom of the second. Moseley settled down a bit after that, but a Billy Butler home run with one out and rain falling in the fifth doomed the Yanks.

Moseley ended up with the loss after a 4.1-inning outing cut short by the weather. He allowed eight hits and three walks while striking out just one, and some nifty defensive work behind him prevented the Royals from breaking the game wide open. The bloom has come off his rose a bit, but the Yankees, meanwhile, had their chances. They went just 3 for 15 with runners in scoring position with all three of those hits coming in the third inning. From the fourt inning on, they were 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position. After the rain delay, it seemed as though the teams were just going through the motions when play resumed at 11:30 p.m. central time.

After returning from the rain delay, the Bombers made a late go of it against Joakim Soria. The young Royals relief stud allowed a single by Derek Jeter. Then, Curtis Granderson laid into two pitches. The first was pulled foul, and the second was a shot to the warning track in left field. After Mark Teixeira struck out, A-Rod singled up the middle, but Jeter could make it only to third.

That Jeter was still only on first when A-Rod was up remained a mystery to me. Soria isn’t particularly fast to the plate, and Jason Kendall, with a league average caught stealing rate, isn’t a particularly adept thrower behind the plate. The Yanks had to put themselves in a position to tie the game on a single, but Jeter never stole. With runers on first and third, Robinson Cano bounced out to second to end a long game.

The Good: Brett Gardner‘s Arm and the bullpen

Brett Gardner nailed Gregor Blanco with a strong throw to the plate in the first inning. Credit: AP Photo, Orlin Wagner

Despite the outcome, Brett Gardner and the bullpen deserve some praise. In the first inning, Gregor Blanco singled and later stole second. Billy Butler bounced a base hit between short and third, and as Blanco rounded third, Gardner came up throwing. He mailed a perfect one-bounce throw to Jorge Posada to nail Blanco. As Posada held onto the ball — but not his glove — Gardner earned his ninth assist of the season.

Also of note was the relief work today. After Dustin Moseley’s start was cut short by the rain, Chad Gaudin, Kerry Wood, Boone Logan and Joba Chamberlain combined for 3.2 innings of scoreless, hitless baseball. The only base runner the Royals managed after the rain delay came on a walk issued by Gaudin to restart action in the 5th. Logan hasn’t allowed a lefty to reach base since the end of June when he hit Ichiro with a pitch, and Wood has been impressive since arriving from the Indians.

Box Scores Galore

ESPN, Fangraphs.

After Jeter’s ninth inning single, the Yanks’ win expectancy was still around 30 percent, but it just went down from there.

Up Next

It’s a Saturday night special, as Phil Hughes (13-5, 3.92) faces off against Sean O’Sullivan (1-3, 5.05) at 7 p.m. Eastern time. If that match-up seems familiar, that’s because these two pitchers have already faced each other twice this season. Rain is thankfully not in the forecast.

Murphy makes DotF history with big night
Yankees sign ninth rounder Taylor Morton
  • Carlosologist

    Long ass game. I was out with friends late and by the time I got back in, the Yanks were still playing. I hope they can beat O’Sullivan again and Hughes can shut them down.

  • Newbie

    Ugh. I was sure that in a battle of the bullpens after the fifth inning, the offense would muster up at least a couple of runs. Whatever, they’ll destroy O’Sullivan tomorrow.

  • bexarama

    Both teams looked really meh offensively after the rain delay.

  • FIPster Doofus

    This was just one of those meh games. With Tampa losing, it doesn’t really matter. A win would’ve been nice, obviously, but whatever.

    Moving on: Saturday will be the third time the Yankees have seen Sean O’Sullivan in the last four weeks; the offense hasn’t been great the past two days, but the Yanks should tee off on SOS considering he’s a familiar face and a replacement-level pitcher who doesn’t miss bats. If Hughes pitches decently, it should make for a win.

  • Commentor

    why are all the games tomorrow night games?

    • nsalem

      afternoon heat

  • Captain Jack

    Sometimes shit just doesn’t go your way, like tonight I was completely shitfaced and I was hitting on drunk chicks left and right. Got one number but I don’t plan on calling the bitch back, since I’m not so sure it was real and even if it was I have no idea what I’d fucking say to her since I was obliterated when I talked to her…just like the Yankees. Sometimes you just can’t deliver when they’re right there for you to score with. Better luck tomorrow. Anyways, I’m glad I didn’t drive down to KC for this shit festival.

    • Apollo22237

      Calling all Captains.

  • Frank

    The only good thing about last night was watching the RS flush an 8-2 lead vs. the Rangers and ultimately lose.

  • Jonathan

    I’m from Kansas and i only get to see the Yankees play a few times a year in person but this was the worst i’ve seen then look as a whole in a long time. Even before the rain delays they were completely lifeless and looked extremely tired. It has been 110 the last two days and i actually missed CC’s gem because i came to get autographs at 1 pm on thursday and had to leave the game with heat stroke. So, 2 rain delays plus extreme heat plus playing a joke of a team plus Girardi not bunting Granderson in the 9th equals loss. That and the ridiculous pop up bunt jeter botched after the Gardner double. I have never seen him do that.

  • Wil Nieves #1 Fan

    This was just one of those empty feeling games. I don’t think anybody is going to lose sleep over this loss. It would have been nice to pick up a win after Tampa’s loss and Boston’s meltdown, but whatever, just one of those nights. I can at least appreciate the game continuing after the rain delay as I would have found it rather frustrating if the umps ended up calling the game after 5.

    I remember reading in one of the game recaps that fewer people seemed to be complaining about the bullpen recently. I definitely agree, and must admit, I feel much more comfortable with how the ‘pen has been performing. Even Joba has somewhat won me over again. So tip of the hat to them.

    Seriously though, the only reason why we lost this game is because Marcus Thames wasn’t in the line up. You people don’t have to agree with me, but you know I’m right.

    • candyforstalin

      you’re right. because a 15,9 ld% and absolutely no speed just screams .423 babip.

    • JMK’s Mystique and Aura

      Seriously though, the only reason why we lost this game is because Marcus Thames wasn’t in the line up.

      Ummm…that seems really unlikely.

      You people don’t have to agree with me, but you know I’m right.

      First part – true; second part – no, I don’t think you are.

  • Kiko Jones

    Hey, how ’bout some props for Berkman? After all, he did tie the game w/a double…

    • Dirty Pena

      Never. No props for Berkman allowed. Get out.

  • Craig

    Ben, don’t you mean Billy Butler under, ” The Good”? You said Brett Butler.

    • Dirty Pena

      This is why they have their e-mails on the sidebar.