Jul
06

Sabathia, Grandy get Yanks back in win column

By

It’s amazing how quickly a dominant pitching performance can make you forget about two disappointing losses. Add in a tremendous individual offensive effort, and those losses get even further away in the rear-view mirror. That’s what happened on Tuesday night, when the Yankees bludgeoned the Indians and put a quick end to their two-game losing streak.

Cured x2

Turning The Tables

The last time the Yankees faced Carlos Carrasco, he wiggled out of a bases loaded jam and some other trouble early on, but settled down and fired seven shutout innings in a Cleveland win. This time around the Yankees made him pay in the second inning, jumping all over the young righty for five runs. The big blows were Derek Jeter‘s two-run double (a legit shot into the left-center field gap) and Curtis Granderson‘s two-run homer (just inside the right foul pole). Those were the big hits, but the rally was set up by something the Indians did not do rather than something the Yankees did do.

Just like Monday night, when the Yankees let a foul-pop drop in to extend the seventh inning, Cleveland failed to record the third out of the second inning on a defensive play that should have been made. Nick Swisher (single), Jorge Posada (walk), and Brett Gardner (walk) were all on base for Frankie Cervelli with one out, who grounded what should have been an inning-ending double play ball to short. The out was made at second, but Cord Phelps’ relay to first took one hop and handcuffed catcher-turned-first baseman Carlos Santana, who dropped the ball and allowed Cervelli to reach. Swisher scored on the play for the game’s first run.

It’s a play that has to be made, and the blame probably goes to Santana’s inexperience at the position. This was just his 28th career appearance at first base and his 26th of the season. It’s not the most difficult of positions, but hops like that are tough to handle with so little practice. A regular, full-time first baseman would be expected to make that play, and I don’t even mean a stud defender like Mark Teixeira. Jason Giambi scoops that ball (don’t laugh, Giambi had no trouble scooping, he just had no range and couldn’t throw). It’s not an error because of the stupid “can’t assume the double play rule,” but the bottom line is that it was a play that had to be made. It wasn’t and it resulted in the inning staying alive and five runs scoring.

He pitches with his eyes closed just to make it a challenge.

CC Sabathia, Not An All-Star

This guy is on some kind of roll right now, probably his best as a Yankee. Sabathia fired seven shutout innings against his former team, striking out eleven and walking just two with 100 pitches on the nose. He struck out the side in three different innings, and in their seven at-bats with men in scoring position against CC, the Indians struck out … seven times. It’s the second time in his career he’s had back-to-back double digit strikeout games, and he’s the first Yankee to do it since Roger Clemens in 2002. Two words: Beast Mode.

Over his last three starts, the Yankees’ ace has struck out 33 and walked just five in 22.2 IP, raising his season strikeout rate from 6.64 K/9 to 7.70 K/9. By my calculation, his WAR has climbed from 3.0 to 4.5, which is simply ridiculous. And you know what? I’m perfectly fine with Sabathia not going to the All-Star Game next week. He’s obviously very deserving, but let him go home or on vacation and rest up for the second half. He’s earned it.

Cured

The season is just 84 games old, and Curtis Granderson has already hit the second most homers of his career. He hit numbers 24 and 25 in this game, eclipsing last year’s total (24) and bringing him to within five of his career high set in 2009. Did I mention the season is only 84 games old? The Grandyman’s season line sits at a gaudy .278/.370/.597 following the three-hit effort, and he’s just nine walks behind last year’s total in 161 fewer plate appearances.

Into the gap.

Leftovers

Jeter picked up his first two hits since coming off the disabled list, the first a dinky little infield single that the third baseman was unable to make a play on, the second that booming double into the gap. He’s now four hits away from 3,000, and for selfish reasons I hope he gets it Friday night, when I’ll be at the game. Either way, seems like a pretty safe bet that he’ll get the milestone hit at home during the Rays series.

Every single member of the lineup had multiple hits … except Cervelli, who went 0-for-5. Grandy, Swisher (two hits and a walk), Posada (two hits and a walk), and Gardner (also two hits and a walk) all reached base three times while Jeter, Teixiera, Alex Rodriguez, and Robinson Cano all had two hits. Gardner stole two bases, and he’s been successful in 17 of his last 21 attempts dating back to mid-May. His season success rate (22-for-32, 68.8%) is slowing inching back towards the break-even point.

As if there was any doubt, Lance Pendleton assured us that he’ll be going down to Triple-A Scranton to make room on the roster for Phil Hughes tomorrow. He allowed two runs on two hits and two walks in his two innings of mop-up duty, throwing 44 pitches. It’s been real, Pants Lendleton. See you in September and hopefully no sooner. Nothing personal.

The Indians have a very nickname-able pitching staff, I’m pretty jealous. We saw Frank “Pee Wee” Herrmann and Josh “The Judge” Judy in this game alone. Then again, I like good pitching staffs, so I’ll trade lame nicknames for pitching ability any day of the week.

Apparently David Cone’s mother texted him during the game to say that he and Michael Kay were talking about too much nonsense and not focusing on the game enough. Love it.

WPA Graph & Box Score

MLB.com has the box score and video, FanGraphs the other stuff.

Up Next

The finale and rubber game of this three-game series will be played Wednesday night, when Hughes makes his (hopefully triumphant) return to the rotation against Justin Masterson. RAB Tickets can get you in the park if you happen to be in Cleveland.

Categories : Game Stories
  • http://twitter.com/rebeccapbp Squishy Jello Person

    I wish all Yankees’ WPA graphs could look like that

  • Slugger27

    it may be just beating a dead horse, but sabathia not being an all-star is just such an egregious mistake. im almost prepared to say its the biggest snub in all star game history.

    dude had 3.9 WAR at the time of selection, and itll be like 4.3ish after tonight. if youre into obsolete stats, he leads mlb in wins. i cant recall in my lifetime a guy dominating both advanced stats and traditional stats like CC has and not making the team.

    • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

      Ron Washington loves him some cocaine.

      • Jack

        It is a hell of a drug.

    • Kiko Jones

      Is the Red Sox-loving ESPN somehow involved in this travesty?

      • Slugger27

        Not sure I follow…

        • Pat D

          Good. Keep following me and I’ll have you arrested!

      • Sayid J

        No…

      • Theo the Boy Genius

        I was behind this (as well as Peter Gammons). We are hoping CC goes back to the Captain Crunch over the break.

        We also paid Big Papi in steroids after he convined Cano to do the homerun derby.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      In the game where pitchers only pitch for an inning, I don’t mind. CC’s main strength of eating innings won’t be used in the game.

      • Slugger27

        This is both incorrect and irrelevant. CCs main strength is being a dominant pitcher, the fact that he does it while being a durable innings eater is icing on an already awesome cake. Him pitching only 1 inning in the all star game has nothing to do with anything, as u could say that abt any starting pitcher selected to the team. And its not like managers think like that or manage specifically to win anyway

        • JobaWockeeZ

          This is both incorrect and irrelevant

          Okay I thought we weren’t going to have those name calling and irrelevant insulting lightsaber fights.

          CCs main strength is being a dominant pitcher

          Wow, that’s not like extremely vague or anything. There are numerous facets of pitching not just, being dominant or sucky beleive it or not. CC is doing it by soaking innings who’s first in the entire MLB. I don’t know how that isn’t a mian strength of his. His value is tied up into pitching innings though having a HR rate of half of his career’s certainly helps.

          him pitching only 1 inning in the all star game has nothing to do with anything, as u could say that abt any starting pitcher selected to the team.

          Ron Washington is an MLB manager. So since we do this for Girardi, he has more knowledge than all of us so he’s right about not picking CC. That argument sucks though so I’m not really going there.

          And its not like managers think like that or manage specifically to win anyway

          Holy shit! You know Ron Washington and other MLB managers?!? If you do tell them to come here and prove that they treat the game as a big joke. But seeing as a manager has to immerse himself with strategies and tactics I’m not throwing away that he’s looking into building a staff that will help him win. A few pitchers performed better on a per inning basis than CC. He’s 16th in the AL for K/9, 12th in the AL for BB/9 and 18th in the AL in WHIP. Yes he’s better than other pitchers on the team but every team needs a representative so excuse Ron if his choices were limited. We can bitch about CJ Wilson but Girardi did the same exact thing with his team and no one bitched.

          • Slugger27

            why you took my post so personal is beyond me. ive read your first sentence a few times and still cant tell if youre being serious or it was a joke that didnt land.

            anyway, whats vague about me saying CCs best strength is being dominant? you’re saying its eating innings, and im saying its being good. of course eating innings is a great thing, but its not his main strength, hes not livan hernandez.

            im not sure how you can disagree with my comment stating that starters pitching 1 inning in the all star game is irrelevant. if you think thats relevant, than the argument is a lost cause anyway.

            and the ron washington thing…. yes, i said they dont manage the game specifically to win. its an exhibition game. if they did, nobody would be mandatorily pulled after 5 innings. this isnt arguable.

            your 1 sentence comment about his snub being justified cuz hes an innings eater and his 1 inning in the all star game wouldnt play to his strengths is one of the dumbest comments ive read on here in a long while. if that makes me a dick, then fine, i guess im a dick.

      • http://www.youcantpredictbaseball.com bexarama

        I’m just being picky here and I’m not like OMG CC BEING EXCLUDED IS A CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY HOW WILL I EXPLAIN THIS TO MY CHILDREN AND PETS?!?!?! but CC’s main strength is probably eating innings at a much higher level than most other inning-eater-type pitchers. I mean, scarily enough the current version of Carl Pavano is kind of an innings-eater but he’s not on CC’s level.

        • Mike HC

          CC being left off the team really is as close to being a crime against humanity as leaving someone off an all star team could ever be. Not even kidding, Selig should step in and figure out a way to get this guy on the team.

          • Jorge

            and that Casey Anthony got away with it.

      • sangreal

        CC wasn’t going to pitch anyway, his contribution is irrelevant. He should have been selected for the honors.

    • Rick

      I have no particular reason to think this besides the fact that almost every off-field story about CC is of the “he’s a good dude with a big heart” variety, but it wouldn’t surprise me if he is the kind of guy who would feel like he needed to show up at the game just to tip his cap to the crowd if he got picked. Maybe CC kinda prefers it this way so he can take his trip to the Bahamas.

      Again, no basis whatsoever in any fact, just spitballing. I mean it’s just so incomprehensible otherwise, right?

      Kick up your feet Big Man, you have definitely earned it.

      • Slugger27

        Incomprehensible is a good word yes. If u think there’s too many yankees, then hell, leave rivera off. There’s no rationale for it. When looking at the numbers (which will be even better after tonight), I think its the biggest all star snub in my lifetime, maybe ever.

    • Mike HC

      Agreed. I didn’t even realize he didn’t make the team until this recap. How is that even acceptable? This game fucking counts, too!!! ha

    • Ro

      I just need one good reason why the best pitcher currently in the AL was not named an All-Star? I’m actually pretty pissed off about this. I just looked at the Roster and outside of Verlander, none of those other selections have anything on CC at the moment. Freaking stupid. CC has the potential to go into the break at 13-4 and if one looked beyond the numbers, the guy could potentially be a 15 game winner right now. (I know its not the best way to look at things) but he lost out on 1 or 2 wins in April that he certainly should have had. Point being, the guy is just blowing all other pitchers away in the AL.

      F’ing C.J Wilson. That’s like picking A.J Burnett to be an All Star just because he has a few extra in the win column at the right time of the year. I’m willing to bet CC finishes off the season somewhere around 22-8 or 23-7 while Wilson is 16-14 with an ERA above 3.50 or something along those lines.

      • Klemy

        Picking A.J. wouldn’t really be the same thing. That might be a bad comparison in my opinion, but point taken.

      • http://kierstenschmidt.com Kiersten

        Ron Washington explained it. The top 5 players’ picks go to the game automatically, and CC was 6. So when one of the other guys can’t go, Verlander, Shields, etc, CC will automatically be named. Then when he can’t pitch, number 7 will be named. So even though he wasn’t an original All-Star and won’t be able to pitch anyway, he’ll still be named an All-Star for bonus, HOF, etc, purposes.

        It’s really dumb, but it is what it is.

        • chaz

          Yeah- but one thong- EIGHT starters were named to the team- Five by the players, three by the manager. Hernandez-Gonzalez-Weaver-Beckett-Shields-Price-Wilson-Verlander. So this says that Sabathia is the 9th best starter, not 6th best.

          I agree, pitching on Sunday is irrelevent to selection. Hernandez, Shields and Verlander are all lined up to pitch Sunday and they were selected

  • China Joe

    “The out was made at second, but Cord Phelps’ relay to first took one hop and handcuffed catcher-turned-first baseman Carlos Santana…”

    wait for it…You live by the Cord, you die by the Cord.

    Boom! awww yeah, with a dry, cool wit like that I could work for ESPN.

  • Rick

    Barely on-topic anecdote:

    Frank Herrmann pitched and went the distance to beat my high school team in the semifinals of the NJ Prep B State tournament my senior year.

    On the one hand, he won the state title, went to Harvard, and is living out the dream of every kid who ever picked up a baseball. On the other hand, he lives in Cleveland. I’m calling it a wash.

    • Phife Dawg

      My dad and Herrmann’s father also went to high school together.

      Small world.

      • Plesh

        I live in NJ…small world

        • Cris Pengiuci

          I visited NJ many times, but always felt the need to leave. :-)

  • mike c

    cone was great tonight, he’s the best live broadcaster on yes… a blowout road game in cleveland was right in his wheelhouse

    • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

      Cone + Kenny = WIN

      • Kiko Jones

        Agreed. Also, Mrs. Cone rocks.

      • mike c

        yeah they are the best two. kenny and kay are the worst though… I’d rather listen to john & suzyn sometimes over hearing kenny fake laugh like dr. hibbert at michael kay’s puns and twisted logic

        • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

          I like Kenny and Kay together. Any booth without Flaharty is usually fine with me.

          • FIPster Doofus

            Any booth without Flaharty is usually fine with me.

            Couldn’t agree more.

  • boogie down

    He pitches with his eyes closed just to make it a challenge.

    He’s The Most Interesting Man in the World.

    “I don’t always pitch dominantly, but when I do, I prefer many strikeouts.”

  • Mr. Met

    The Yankees are a bunch of steroid-using cheaters. Just ask A-fraud. Mets FTW!!

    • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

      Bernie Madoff says hi.

    • JobaWockeeZ

      Mike Piazza. That is all. Enjoy your years of sucking though.

      • Thomas Cassidy

        Piazza, Santiago, Dykstra, list goes on and on.

        And since he wants to name people who used while they weren’t on the Yankees (A-Rod), I guess I can probably count Beltran, K-Rod, Stanton, Lo Duca, Schoeneweis. I’m wrong though. Only Yankees are responsible, not the other 80% of baseball players who used in the career.

        Amirite?

    • Thomas Cassidy

      You are 100% correct. Oh, wait…

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....01332.html

    • http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703426004575339013108198050.html Bobby Bonilla

      Hey, where’s my money?

    • Pat D

      I’m afraid you’re on the wrong site. You want to make this comment at http://www.nomaas.org.

    • Evan3457

      Yeah, it’s great to root for a 4th-place dynasty, ain’t it?

    • Mike HC

      You should be talking. Look at the size of your head. You are not fooling anybody.

      • Esteban

        This made me laugh.

  • Pat D

    Huh. I guess Dan Haren was upset about getting snubbed for the ASG, too. Of course, he wouldn’t be able to pitch anyway.

  • Pat D

    Ha! Brandon League blew a save. That gives him as many as Mo and of course Mo has actually pitched much, much better.

    To think I had people telling me that League had been better.

    • Urban

      Really? Here?

      • Pat D

        No, it was on ESPN.com.

    • Freddy Garcia’s 86 mph Heat

      League: 1-4, 3.22 ERA, 21/25 saves, 2.58 FIP, 1.5 BB/9, 6.3 K/9, 0.9 WAR
      Mo: 1-1 1.91 ERA, 21/25 saves, 2.10 FIP, 1.4 BB/9, 7.6 K/9, 1.2 WAR

      Mo >>>> League

      • Evan3457

        Mo has been >>>>> league his entire career.

        • TheLastClown

          Nice.

        • Thomas Cassidy

          I think you mean Mo has been >>>>> everybody else, his entire career.

    • whozat

      He got voted in by the players, though…what’re you gonna do?

      • Pat D

        I’m not saying he didn’t deserve the ASG nod. I’m saying there’s no way he’s better than Mo.

  • http://RAB Nuke LaDoosh

    Two Words: Beast Mode. Wish I caught this game. I was at U2 in Soldier Field.

    • Esteban

      Humblebrag?

      • Sayid J

        Hahah yea. Thank goodness you told us where you were Nuke! I was getting worried you WEREN’T at the U2 concert there for a second…

    • Steve

      Yeah, bummer, I missed it too. I was gettin my knob polished by Pamela Anderson.

      • http://RAB Nuke LaDoosh

        Hah! yeah, you like me, aren’t too many things we would miss a Yankee game for…

  • http://johnsterling.blogspot.com/ Xstar7

    http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/gameday.....8;c_id=bos

    Yeah right. Did those idiots even watch the replay before they wrote that article? And Papelbum still sucks for making the game that close after he came in with a 3-0 lead.

  • Charles

    I’m fine with CC not on the Allstar team, hes throwing sunday so why put him on the roster to just sit there? Get a guy who can actually throw in the game, I don’t wanna see a ’02 debacle over again…

    • Sayid J

      If a guy throws on Sunday he is replaced on the roster. CC could’ve received the honor of being on the roster and being recognized for his pitching performance without having to waste a spot or pitch on short rest.

    • chaz

      So why were Velander, Hernandez and Shields selected? (all are pitching Sunday)

  • forensic

    One of my favorite post-game quotes ever, here’s Derek Jeter (via Chad Jennings):

    “I have no ego whatsoever.”

    That’s just classic…

    • Monteroisdinero

      “After all, I didn’t paint my 30,000 sq ft. house in pinstripes.”

  • Dino Velvet

    Biggest story of the night is Lester going on the DL with a Lat muscle strain.

    • mbonzo

      Yea its puts a real chill to that pitching rotation. Their current pitching situation is an example of what I’ve been saying all season, the Yankees had the better organization and thus better team all year. Yanks can deal with injuries with their payroll flexibility and strong farm system, the Red Sox are depleted in both areas thanks to last offseason. I want to see the Yankees beat Lester, but its all part of the game, and the Yankees have been a better team for a reason and look to be better from here on out.

      The current rotation sits like this,
      1. Beckett (xFIP 3.65)
      2. Lackey (xFIP 4.83)
      3. Wakefield (xFIP 4.99)
      4. Aceves (xFIP 5.28)
      5. Miller (xFIP 4.08)

      Yankees
      1. Sabathia (xFIP 3.24)
      2. Burnett (xFIP 3.94)
      3. Colon (xFIP 2.96)
      4. Hughes (xFIP 6.34)
      5. Garcia (xFIP 4.18)

      • Dino Velvet

        So much for the greatest team evah assembled.

        All spring and winter you could hear media saying “it’s gonna be a cake walk” as they prematurely “crowned their ass”.

        But as Howard Cosell used to “that’s why they play the game”.

      • David, Jr.

        Very confident in my “9″, even with the Red Sux there. All kinds of positives developing. Robertson is closer quality. Grandy has proven that his change is for real and will last. Cano should be a beast the rest of the year. Colon looked fabulous in comeback start. Gardy figuring out base stealing again. Decent depth, like Nova in AAA, which any team would like.

        Need a few things to happen to rise even higher. They don’t need to happen, but they could happen, and if they do, this will be a machine: Strong comeback for Hughes. Return of effective Soriano. Jeter to hit with more strength, like yesterday’s double.

  • Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan

    Granderson is on pace to score 148 runs this season. Unreal.

    • Monteroisdinero

      Grandy taking advantage of the pitchers’ “let-down” after the Jeter ab’s. Grandy is going to have a big series against the Rays. Book it.

      • pat

        Too bad it should be the other way around. Pitchers should be attacking Jeter so he’s not on base for Granderson.

  • Tacitus

    I think we have some pretty good nicknames ourselves.

    Brett “The Constant” Gardner
    Andruw “No Time For Love, Doctor” Jones
    “San” Francisco Cervelli
    “Kurt” Russell Martin
    “Cowboy” Curtis Granderson
    Bartolo Colonoscopy
    Boone Logan Airport
    Mariano “Geraldo” Rivera
    “The Admiral” David Robertson
    Lance “Bass” Pendleton
    Phil “Howard” Hughes
    Brian Gordon “Bombay”

    • Nigel Bangs

      That’s good work, there.

    • Delaware – Ralph

      Agreed – nice job!

  • Hester Prynne

    CC is an allstar. Washington is an idiot. He could have named CC knowing that CC was pitching Sunday and didn’t want to go anyway then named CJ Wilson as a replacement. Ron Washington is a joke.

    • Johnny Nitro

      That’s why you never trust a junkie. Just watch Breaking Bad.

  • AaronGuielWithASmile

    If the season ended today, is Curtis Granderson the AL MVP?

    Seems to me like it’s pretty much between him and Adrian Gonzalez (I’m assuming that the Blue Jays won’t be close enough to justify giving it to Bautista.)

    • Guest

      Season ended today, it is Joey Bats, hands down no question.

      Best hitter in the league by a country mile. Played great defense in right. Now playing 3B to fill a team need.

      The award is “most valuable player,” not “most valuable based on the net results of both player’s contributions and his teammates’ performance.”

      The best player in the league contributes the most value to his team. How the best player in the league could not also be the most valuable player truly escapes me.

      If Babe Ruth were on some crappy team in the early 1920′s when he was hitting more homeruns than ENTIRE teams, would some other guy have been “more valuable” because his crappy team didn’t win the pennnant?

      • AaronGuielWithASmile

        I agree entirely with you.

        But we both know that the majority of voters won’t give the MVP to a guy who’s team finishes the season 20 games out of first. I guess the argument is, “if Toronto could finish in last place with Bautista, they could do it without him.”

        • Guest

          You’re right. I’m living in a fantasy world, you’re living in the real one.

          No way Joey Bats wins unless Toronto is in the hunt until the end of the season (unlikely).

          But then again, they proved us wrong with King Felix last year…maybe the times, they are a changin.’

    • chaz

      Sorry to deliver bad news, but Yankees do not win post season awards. There is an anti-NY, pro-Boston bias in the media and it is not just ESPN. Gonzalez has already been crowned MVP. Sabathia could win 25 games and he won’t even crack the top 3 vote getters for Cy. It will be Beckett or Verlander, most likely Beckett as long as he is not injured. You can also put Beckett down for comeback player and I wouldn’t be surprised if Francona wins manager of the year (pulled the team together after 2-10 start, etc)- this one was already floated on Baseball Tonight last week.

      I truly wish it was otherwise, but this is what is going to happen.

      • AaronGuielWithASmile

        In the past 5 years A-Rod has won the MVP twice, Giambi won the comeback player of the year, and various Yankees have won about a thousand gold gloves and silver sluggers.

        Sure Jeter got robbed of the MVP in 2006, but overall the Yankees have had no issue winning postseason awards.

        • chaz

          I believe silver slugger awards are based on stats and gold gloves are voted on by the players.

          But good point about Arod and Giambi. I consider these awards meaningless. The Yankees won 4 championships 1996-2000 and none of their players won MVPs or Cy Youngs. If the red Sox sweep the post season awards and the Yankees win the title, I’ll take it.