Sep
14

Mariano makes history as Yanks win again

By

A three-game winning streak with a little history thrown in? Sign me up!

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Burnett Settles Down

The Yankees jumped out to an early lead thanks to a Robinson Cano solo homer and a Charlie Furbush wild pitch in the second inning, but of course A.J. Burnett wasn’t having any of that “protect the lead” nonsense. He allowed a leadoff double to Miguel Olivo to open the very next half inning, let him move to third on a wild pitch, and then watched him walk in to score on Brendan Ryan‘s two-out single. A sacrifice fly in an adventurous third inning knotted the game up at two.

Then something weird happened; Burnett settled down and was damn effective the rest of the way. Here’s what makes that really interesting: he did so after abandoning his new mechanics. He went back to the old “hands at the waist” setup, though I did notice that his hands were still up at his chest from the stretch. Anyway, A.J. wrapped up his outing by retiring eleven of the final twelve men he faced, seven via the strikeout. His eleven punch outs are a new season high and his second most as a Yankee. He whiffed a dozen Texas Rangers back in August 2009.

Ten of those eleven strikeouts came on the curveball, which he threw 40 times out of 103 pitches. All but six of his 13 swings and misses came on the hook as well. I’ve seen a few starters pitch exclusively from the stretch when they had delivery issues (Tim Lincecum’s done it, and Ubaldo Jimenez did it during his no-hitter), but I can ever remember seeing a starter scrap part of his delivery and go back to an old motion in the middle of a start like Burnett did in this game. I’m curious to see what delivery he uses going forward, but it’ll obviously be too little, too late to save his rotation spot going into the postseason. Two runs in six innings against the weakest of weak lineups is a fine job though, and that’s what A.J. did on Tuesday night.

The Cano Show

(AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

As I said, Cano opened the scoring with a shot homer to right to lead off the second inning. Rather generic Robbie homer, a hanging breaking ball that met that sweet, sweet swing. Jesus Montero (more on him in a bit) followed that up with a single, then moved to third on Andruw Jones‘ double, then came in to score the second run of the game/inning on a wild pitch. An evil homer and a manufactured run in the same inning, the best of both worlds.

The score remained 2-2 until the sixth, which Nick Swisher led off with a booming double to center. I guess his elbow is doing just fine. Mark Teixeira moved him over to third on a bloop single, then Cano brought the run in with a fielder’s choice, barely beating out the double play. Not that RBI mean anything, but Robinson has now driven in 111 runs this season, a new career-high and tied with Curtis Granderson for the most in the AL. There’s nothing wrong with liking to see Yankees atop various leaderboards, no matter how outdated the stat. As he is most nights, Cano was a big part of the offense in this one.

The Formula

With a one-run lead in hand and Burnett over 100 pitches, Joe Girardi rolled out his cookbook end-game relief plan. Rafael Soriano came in to face his former team, and managed his first 1-2-3 inning in twelve appearances. David Robertson came out for the eighth, but things got sticky. Dustin Ackley opened with a single, Mike Carp struck out, Justin Smoak walked, then he and Ackley pulled off a double steal when Miguel Olivo struck out. For whatever reason, Girardi decided to have Robertson intentionally walk Adam “.229/.272/.356″ Kennedy to load the bases.

I’m of the belief that all managers suck, just that some suck less than others. Girardi’s a fine manager, great with bullpens and solid all around, but that intentional walk was spectacularly stupid. I mean, it’s among the dumbest things I’ve ever seen him do. As awesome as Robertson is, he’s not exactly Mr. Pinpoint Control, and now he was forced into a spot where a walk meant a tie game. Yeah, it ended up working out because Trayvon Robinson struck out, but that still doesn’t make a good idea. They really got away with one there. Free baserunners in a close game are a bad idea, folks, especially with two outs. Anyway, he got away with it.

With a one-run lead in the ninth inning, in came the great Mariano Rivera. Wily Mo Pena went down swinging. Ichiro slapped a single through the left side. Kyle Seager struck out. With one out left in the game, Ichiro broke for second, but Russell Martin‘s throw beat him to the bag and Derek Jeter applied the tag. Out. The game was over, and Mariano had his 600th career save, only the second man ever to accomplish that. Fittingly, three future Hall of Famers were involved on the final play. Trevor Hoffman’s all-time record of 601 is next up on the milestone checklist, and I suspect Mo won’t be stopping there. Congrats to Rivera, the undisputed greatest off all-time.

Leftovers

(Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Montero had himself a nice little game, going 2-for-4 with a single, a double, a long fly ball to the warning track in left-center and a GIDP. He did make a baserunning gaff though, getting caught too far off second on a ground ball to short. Here’s a fun fact though: Montero’s first professional plate appearance came against Furbush back in 2007, and he took him deep. Here’s the DotF of that game, which links to the box score. Those two also faced each other a few times while in the High-A Florida State League in 2009. Pretty safe to say that Jesus had a decent idea of what to expect in this one.

Cano and Montero were the only Yankees with multi-hit games, but Jeter, Swisher, Tex, Jones, and pinch-hitter Curtis Granderson all had a knock each. The bottom three of the order – Martin, Eduardo Nunez, and Brett Gardner – combined to go 0-for-9 with five strikeouts, a total eyesore. For the second night in a row and only the fifth time all season, the Yankees did not draw a single walk on offense. Go figure.

The Red Sox housed the Blue Jays while Rays lost to the Orioles, so the Yankees are up four and eight games in the division and wildcard races, respectively. The magic number to clinch a playoff berth is down to just eight. It could happen this weekend.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Box Score

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs some other stuff, and ESPN the updated standings.

Up Next

Because the Yankees are not allowed to have getaway days, they’ll go for the sweep of the series at 10pm ET on Wednesday. Sucks so much. Ivan Nova gets the ball against Jason Vargas.

Categories : Game Stories

105 Comments»

  1. NHYankeesFan says:

    Congratulations to Mariano Rivera. If he doesnt get in to the hall of fame with 100% of the votes then whoever didnt vote for him should be fired immediately

  2. YankeeFan says:

    If memory serves, Kennedy was 2-0 before the IBB. Open base, behind on the count, lead run at second, rookie behind Kennedy who has struck out 41% of the time season this season. I know it’s Adam Kennedy but why give in considering who’s behind him? Don’t think it is as dumb of an idea as you are making it out to be.

    • Greg says:

      Agreed as well well. Mike is way off on this one. Especially considering it worked out

      It’s kind of funny that Mike always makes fun of the bullpen formula that Girardi tries to employ his “cookbook”). Does Mike know that the Yankees have the best bullpen in the AL? Maybe some other managers should borrow the cookbook.

      • Guns of the Navarone says:

        “Especially considering it worked out.”

        That doesn’t mean SHIT.

        If it “worked” that’s because a damn good reliever got out if it despite his manager’s dumb decision to put him in a greater position to fail. Greg, you’re lost. This is example (pick a number) that Girardi’s not that good of a manager. Free baserunners, questionable substitutions, sacrifice bunts, general overmanaging… this has been going on for a while now.

        • YankeeFan says:

          Wait so 2-0 count on a hitter with the lead run at 2nd in the bottom of the 8th with a strike-out prone hitter on deck and you are saying giving in to Adam Kennedy would have given D-Rob a great chance to succeed?

          Love an explanation for that.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          You are exaggerating what at best is a marginal difference in his changes of success vs. failure. There is an argument he put him in a better position (against a worse batter in an even count), but you are clearly too close-minded to consider this. Simply reading run expectancy charts for a general situation is not a scientific way to make decisions under specific circumstances.

  3. Rey22 says:

    Congrats to Mariano. He’s the man.

  4. Midland TX says:

    You’re being melodramatic about the IBB, which came after D-Rob fell behind 2-0 on a former pesky Angel who has killed the Yankees this year (.400/.400/.550). Meanwhile the rookie hitting behind him has an OBP of .282 with 40 Ks in 104 PAs.

  5. Rich in NJ says:

    I would like to see Cano and Momtero hit back-to-back for the next 5 to 7 years.

    And yeah, congrats to Mo.

  6. Montero's Mojo says:

    Apparently Wakefield’s accomplishment is more impressive (after 8 tries nonetheless) according to ESPN.

    • Freddy Garcia's 86 mph Heat says:

      That tells you everything you need to know about ESPN.

    • Kiersten says:

      Well neither one of them was first, so you know, they’re basically the same.

    • Tom says:

      Kind of annoying… but when seemingly >50% of the analysts have some tie to the Red Sox and when you look at the tenor of the coverage between the 2 teams, pretty expected.

      I guess it’s better than them leading with why Ellsbury should be the MVP (or is it Pedroia this week? AGon?) and talking about defensive stats as if they have a clue.

      • Kevin says:

        Wakefield got the win because his offense bailed him out TWICE after he blew the lead.
        That is not an impressive win to me.

        • radnom says:

          Are you really so blinded by Red Sox hatred that you don’t realize ESPN is celebrating the overall career accomplishment and not only his last performance?

          • Januz says:

            Tim Wakefield has had a nice career, but it is not even on the level of Jamie Moyer (Another guy who got hitters out with junk), let alone on the level of Rivera, Halliday, Sabathia or Verlander (His accomplishment tonight should be a bigger story than Wakefield’s). Of course, what do you expect from the network that rated Michael Jordan over Babe Ruth?

            • Jerome S says:

              Woa woa woa… Michael Jordan and Babe Ruth seem pretty close to me.

            • jsbrendog says:

              tim wakefield was able to pitch long enough in the major leagues to amass 200 wins. that is a commendable feat. he has done so with a 55 mph knuckleball and an 80 mph fastball. that is also commendable. he deserves credit for being an above average major leaguer for 20 years at one of the most fungible positions where the average shelf life of players is well below the 20 yrs he has been in the league.

              take off your red sox hatred blinders for a second and give the guy the credit he deserves.

              • Cris Pengiuci says:

                I really hope you’re joking. Yes, he deserves credit for what he’s done in his career. It’s just that Mariano deserves WAAAAAAAAAAAAY more credit for what he’s accomplished. 200 wins in a career has been done many times. 600 saves, twice.

    • Jimmy says:

      And no juice for A.J.’s new all-time wild pitch record. Not even a mention.

    • Yank The Frank says:

      foxsports.com is a lot more balanced. I don’t bother with espn anymore.

  7. forensic says:

    The win was great, but there sure were frustrating parts to this game. Several more failures to get a runner in from 3rd with less than two outs. Jeter failing to turn two on that grounder, later allowing a run to score. Two terrible baserunning error. 1 pitch AB after 1 pitch AB, including a couple DP’s.

    Just didn’t seem like their heads were totally in this one through much of it.

  8. duzzi23 says:

    Congrats Mariano you deserve this and we are all lucky to have witnessed the greatest ever. Damn its going to suck when he retires. Also I don’t get how RBIs don’t mean anything? Thats just ignorant whether your into advanced stats and sabermetrics over traditional stats or not. RBIs are important.

    • PaulF says:

      RBI’s are important in the game because someone needs to drive in the runs for you to win, but the don’t tell you anything important when evaluating how good a player is.

    • Chen Meng Wang says:

      In a sense RBIs are important because they are Runs for your team. However as a individual player’s statistic they are utterly useless to determine how valuable a player is. Imagine if Babe Ruth had Chone Figgins and Alex Rios hitting in front of him. His RBIs are going to tank because the batters in front of him are never on base. He should still be considered a valuable offensive force because of his OBP and SLUG and WAR.

    • Gonzo says:

      It’s going to blow your mind when you hear Wins and Saves are useless too.

      • Chen Meng Wang says:

        Wins are the most important stat for identifying a good starting pitcher

        /Micheal Kay’d

        • jsbrendog says:

          this guy is having a great year, he is 10-1 with a 7.56 era and 50 more hitsthan inning spitched. he gets 15 runs of support a game and has struck out 6 batters in 125 innings.

          ten. wins. put it on the left side!

      • Brian S. says:

        Don’t forget batting average and runs. This guy might give up on baseball.

        • the Other Steve S. says:

          Thank God you guys are around to correct a hundred years of people paying attention to the wrong thing in baseball. Time to go worship at the altar of Billy Beane. Oh, btw, how are the A’s doing these days?

          • B-Rando says:

            and how long was slavery legal and accepted?
            and how long were women not allowed to vote, amongst many other things?

            just because something has been done someway for a hundred years, doesn’t mean its right.

            I’m not saying old stats are worthless, but theres a massive flaw in your argument. Billy Beane changed the game, its undeniable. The reason the As no longer are successful is because every other team (most with more resources) adopted parts of his philosophy. He is no longer able to “steal” players on the cheap because their value is seen by all teams now.

            I understand what point you are trying to make, because in some ways I agree with it; but the way you are making it is flat out wrong.

          • Ted Nelson says:

            Billy Beane was merely the first or among the first MLB decision makers to pick up on sabermetrics… he largely didn’t develop the theories behind the stats he was using/the As were using.

            Acting like the old way of doing things is always the right way is beyond stupid. Without new ways of doing things (innovation) he’d all still be living in trees, somewhere outside the Garden of Eden in the desert, or whatever creation story you believe. Ignoring logic to hold onto tradition seems extremely unwise to me.

            • BK2ATL says:

              Maybe not but for 107ish+ years, traditional stats have driven teams to build towards winning World Series. The ultimate goal of every team. Advanced metrics is something that works best in small markets.

              Only very recently have Sabermetrics even entered the conversations. It’s even debatable whether or not they’ve ever led any team to win any World Series to date. It gives them moral victories, rarely, if ever, championships.

              You can throw out Boston as an example, but that’s debatable. San Francisco had no major WAR or UZR or whatever advanced stat leaders, other than pitching. Lincecum striking out batters and winning games. Brian Wilson saving them.

              If I’m correct, for 2 years running, the Red Sox were supposed to crush MLB due to advanced stat projections coming into the season. Last year, Seattle was the darling of the offseason and were supposed to run the table. So far, neither have happened. Oakland’s situation worked until money actually did come into play.

              I say all of this to say, while advanced metrics are helpful to the discussion, I’ll take traditional stats over them everyday, if those traditional stats quantify exactly what has taken placed, over some formulas that are tweaked depending on whatever mood swings are currently in season.

              I’d still take a Curtis Granderson over a Franklin Gutierrez and a Robinson Cano over a Ben Zobrist 162 games out of 162 games, even if the advanced stats say something different.

              • Nigel Incubator-Jones says:

                From Joe Pos, here is a list of pitchers based on Wins:
                1. Jim Kaat (283)
                2. Jamie Moyer (267)
                3. Jack Morris (254)
                4. Bob Gibson (251)
                5. Juan Marichal (243)
                6. Herb Pennock (241)
                7. Jerry Reuss (220)
                8. Pedro Martinez (219)
                9. Bret Saberhagen (167)
                10. Sandy Koufax (165)

                Then the same pitchers by WAR

                1. Bob Gibson (85.6)
                2. Pedro Martinez (75.9)
                3. Juan Marichal (64.0)
                4. Bret Saberhagen (54.7)
                5. Sandy Koufax (54.5)
                6. Jamie Moyer (47.3)
                7. Jim Kaat (41.2)
                8. Jack Morris (39.3)
                9. Herb Pennock (36.9)
                10. Jerry Reuss (33.1)

                Which list is more indicitive of a true, best to worse, ranking of these pitchers?

              • Ted Nelson says:

                To me your argument displays a lack of understanding of what statistics are. There is a descriptive function of stats and a predictive function. In terms of describing what’s happened, you try to best describe how a player performed. Looking at someone like RBIs does not do this, because it doesn’t isolate the player’s performance. (Same for BA, for example, since it ignores walks.) Trying to predict future performance is an extremely inexact science. To do it scientifically, one would estimate projected performance with a margin of error on either side. Stats are not meant to forecast exactly what will happen. Implying they are or should do that, as you do, is silly. Looking at RBIs here is worse than in describing what happened. If a player’s teammates change (and they usually do to some extent from season to season) the opportunities for RBIs will change, so not isolating his individual performance is more harmful.

                -”Advanced metrics is something that works best in small markets.” The Yankees use advanced metrics. So do the Red Sox. I would be surprised if there are any teams that do not.

                -”Only very recently have Sabermetrics even entered the conversations.” So what? Change happens.

                “It’s even debatable whether or not they’ve ever led any team to win any World Series to date. It gives them moral victories, rarely, if ever, championships.” What are you talking about? The Yankees use sabermetrics and won in 2009. As I said, I doubt there’s a team out there that doesn’t use some sabermetrics.

                -”I’ll take traditional stats over them everyday, if those traditional stats quantify exactly what has taken placed” Then I guess you will not take traditional stats, since they don’t isolate a player’s performance. Simple enough.

                -”I’d still take a Curtis Granderson over a Franklin Gutierrez” Who wouldn’t? You are making a ridiculously ignorant caricature of sabermetrics. Granderson is worth 6.8 fWAR this season; Gutierrez, 1.2.

                • Ted Nelson says:

                  Basically… You are making a huge and totally unsubstantiated claim that traditional stats “led teams” to championships better than sabermetric stats do. Really, really weak argument.

      • toad says:

        Wins aren’t useless. They’re not the best measure of a starter’s performance, but they do tell you something.

        Rank starters according to whatever more advanced stats you want, and I bet you’ll find a pretty decent correlation with wins. Yes, there’s a random element in there, and questions of team strength and so on, but wins are hardly meaningless.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          They’re a proxy for other stats. If you have the other stats to look at… they’re meaningless. They correlate to performance, but they don’t actually tell you about performance. This is especially true over any sample a season or shorter.

          Basically your argument (and I agree) is that wins can be used to take an educated guess at performance. If you can just look straight at performance, why bother with wins?

          They’re a team stat, not an individual stat as such.

          • toad says:

            True enough, but I have a couple of quibbles. First, you assume that the other stats are true measures of performance. Not so. All stats have error built into them, and of course the modern ones have a lot of assumptions, so I don’t think you can make that assumption. It’s not that they may not be better indicators than old-fashioned stats, just that I think you are overstating teir accuracy.

            Plus, you have to define what you mean by “performance.” First, there’s the whole career vs. peak issue. Then there’s the fact that the lists above, at least, are based on cumulative stats, with no adjustment for career length and the like.

            To my mind, a starting pitcher’s perfomance, in an individual game, comes down to this:

            Consider the runs he allowed before leaving, with an adjustment for runners on base. Given that, what is the probability that given a league-average offense, and a league-average bullpen, his team will win the game. Pitch a CGSO and it’s 1.0, otherwise it’s less. You can total that over a season, or a career, or calculate a per game average.

            When I get a little time, I might work on that.

            Acting like the old way of doing things is always the right way is beyond stupid.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      As other people are saying, RBIs are a team stat more than an individual stat. It’s nothing to do with “advanced stats” or “traditional stats.” Just logic. If you come up with no one on, the most RBIs you can get are… one. And you have to hit a HR to do that. If you come up with a man on third… you hit a weak grounder to the 2B and still get an RBI. Of course… if there was a man on 1st as well as 3rd, you might hit the exact same ball and not get an RBI since there’s a double play. RBIs measure where your teammates were when you came up (something you have only an intangible influence over… better pitches to hit, less pitches to hit so they walk…) as much as they measure your actual performance. The same ground-out is worth no RBIs or one RBI depending on whether you had a teammate who managed to reach 3B before you came up. The RBI rewards you for making an out because of something your teammate(s) accomplished.

  9. Pat D says:

    Yankees can go 8-7 rest of the way, Red Sox would have to go 12-3 to tie.

  10. Avi says:

    Thank god they didn’t trade Montero for Ubaldo. I might have hated Jimenez worse than Vazquez if they did.

  11. Al says:

    Big ups to AJ. Weak offense and all/ Credit due.
    Can Sori>DR>Mo be the best 7-8-9 in the playoffs?

  12. Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan says:

    I love Mo. And I love that picture of Yogi.

    • Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan says:

      One more thing. People say that Mo is one of the most humble ballplayers out there. But did you guys see that post game interview with Kim Jones where he kept thanking himself? He said, “Well first off all I have to thank God.” Honestly, who the hell thanks himself after accomplishing something? Obnoxious, I hate Mo now.

  13. FachoinaNYY says:

    Unreal how Mo is not featured on ESPN’s frontpage right now… I know this was mentioned before in this thread, but comeon.

    111 MLB pitchers have won 200 games… think of that he 110 people have done that before. Not to mention he fell ass backwards into a win, not some incredible performance for the win, in which case at least it would make some sense for him to be on the front page.

    Jesus, Mo is the second player all time to get to 600 and is near unanimously considered the greatest alltime closer… but no ESPN you are right, it makes sense to put the 111th all time winning-est pitcher on the frontpage after he “miraculously” won a game 18-5.

    I am not normally an ESPN basher as much as others here, but this just pissed me off bigtime.

    • FachoinaNYY says:

      Fun fact: AJ has more career wins (120) than Cliff Lee (118).

    • MikeD says:

      Let’s see what they do when Mo sets the new record. 600, 601 and 602 all will be newsworthy, so perhaps they’re going to wait for the actual record setter.

      Not sure why I’m giving ESPN any benefit of the doubt, but let’s see.

  14. Monteroisdinero says:

    I love watching Jesus bat. Thunder at any moment. When he hits a few moon shots to left center there are going to be some gasps. I’ve seen it at Scranton.

    A moment of silent awe as he circles the bases. And he is only 21……

    And now for a game for Golson please? Gardy has been terrible and Swish has no arm in rf.

    • You’re nothing if not persistent.

      • David, Jr. says:

        Golsonisdinero.

        • Monteroisdinero says:

          Golson needs one fan and it is me. He will be 26 this month I think. He was a first round pick by the Phillies and arguably the best outfielder in the draft in 2004-so there is talent there. Tough to break into the Phillies and Yankee outfield. If Dickerson gets some playing time, Golson should too. His #’s, although not awesome, were even or slightly better than C-Dick at SWB. Maybe Golson got bored too down there.

    • David, Jr. says:

      Think of Montero at about age 24. The Manny and Miguel comparisons may not be far off. We are watching the arrival of a middle of the order Yankee bat, just like Cashman said.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      Gardner is the 3rd most valuable LF in baseball this season by fWAR, and Swisher is 5th in RF only 0.1 away from 3rd. He might get a game, but there’s a reason Golson isn’t playing over those guys. Dickerson has likewise been a beast for the Yankees, with a .397 wOBA. I don’t see much room to complain about Golson not playing, guy had a .327 wOBA in AAA this season.

  15. Montero’s swing on that double was absolutely insane. It looked like he just flicked his wrists and it went to the damn wall.

  16. Spaniard says:

    Whats up with espn showing Manny in TB cap? I bet if he saved battered women he would feature a B?

  17. Paul Proteus says:

    It was painful to see Jorge just sitting on the bench while Mariano got #600. Girardi is as heartless as Joe Torre. If Girardi has a heart he’ll let Jorge catch one inning in Mo’s 602nd save. It’s the right thing to do.

    • Until the playoff spot is clinched, I really don’t want Posada catching any innings in a close and late game.

      So an ideal scenario would be to win the next 6-7 games by 4+ runs, clinch a spot, then get save 601 and 602 in pressure free situations.

      • Paul Proteus says:

        It’s just one inning and we have a big enough cushion. Jorge has caught the majority of those saves and deserves to be catching Mariano’s 602nd as long as he is an active player. Girardi should understand this being a catcher himself.

        • Don’t care. Not worth risking a win late in the season just for Posada’s sake. It’s not like he’s caught all 600 of Mo’s saves.

        • Ted Nelson says:

          As I say below, I disagree with you. Celebrating an accomplishment that hasn’t happened in the middle of a game is classless. If Posada had caught more than a fraction of a game this season, maybe you use him a bit more in the next few games so that he “coincidentally” catches the save. Marching him out there for one inning shows up the other team and Jorge himself.

    • Ted Nelson says:

      I think that marching him out there for one inning “for old time’s sake” would be more embarrassing and denigrating to Posada than giving him the playing time he deserves. Posada is a baseball player, not a charity case. I think it would show-up the other team and Posada to pull a stunt like that… to basically celebrate something that hasn’t happened yet in the middle of a game… and if Mariano blows the save and you’ve put Posada out there to catch, how embarrassing for all involved is that?

  18. JP says:

    I like Tim Wakefield. He’s a class act. But he’s, what, 46? And he reached TWO-hundred, not THREE-hundred, wins. At age 46.

    And this gets equal billing to Rivera notching 600 saves.

    A friend of mine who is a very good writer, once the editor of the MacMillan encyclopedia, and a very smart guy except for the fact that he’s a Red Sox fan, said to me “I apologize for Timmy diverting some attention from the tragically neglected Mariano Rivera.”

    The minds of baseball fans….

    • Paul Proteus says:

      Tim Wakefield is a hack. 200 wins means little in today’s MLB, especially when you’re on one of the better offensive teams. 300 wins is the milestone and Wakfield hasn’t even come close. CC will soon eclipse 200 wins and still have plenty of years left to pursue 300.

      • JP says:

        Gotta disagree with you. Remember Mo’s 600 was also made possible by being on one of the best offensive teams in baseball. I think Mo’s accomplishment is clearly superior to Timmy’s, but calling Wakefield a hack is just wrong. Being able to hang around and be effective as long as he has is definitely an achievement. And he’s a class act personally as well. He would have made a great Yankee….or a great Dodger, or Cub, or Cardinal….he’s a great baseball player.

        • B-Rando says:

          Gotta disagree with you now.

          Being on good team =/= more saves(or save opportunities). If this were the case you should see the saves leaders each year in order of how their team performed. This isn’t the case. Often the inverse is true, where a team who is less than stellar offensively creates more save opportunities. This is because this team may not have the firepower to pull away from their opponent, and often find themselves in close games.

          I would just be careful about hooking the # of saves to the offensive ability of the team they played for. Look at Trevor Hoffman as a very fitting example.

          As for Wakefield, he clearly isn’t a hack, but his accomplishment is totally about longevity more than effectiveness. Obviously you need to be somewhat effective to stick around, but the only reason 200 wins is significant for him is because a pitcher of his “skill level” would never have a chance at that mark without an extremely long career.

      • You don’t need to dismiss Wake to be able to admire what Mo has done.

  19. CS Yankee says:

    Mo needs to reup for two more years and get to 700 as he deserves to have his own level.

    Hoffman was great, crawled to the 600 milestone (as most aging athletes do), but Mo has been better than his average this year. Mo’s career ERA is about 2.25 and he is below that (2.10?) in his 41st year. Incredible.

    If health remains, he could very likely be around 650 at age 42 and one would believe he is in better shape than Johnson, Moyer, or Wakefield is/was at that age.

  20. CS Yankee says:

    BTW, good to see Yogi today (in the sidebar)…I’m thinking we don’t get to see “The Mick” tomorrow though, which is kind of sad, but I’ll be rooting for Torre tomorrow instead.

  21. MikeD says:

    Mo needs to retire with 714 saves. It’s a Yankee number fitting of a legend.

  22. toad says:

    I’ve seen a few starters pitch exclusively from the stretch when they had delivery issues (Tim Lincecum’s done it, and Ubaldo Jimenez did it during his no-hitter),

    If I recall, both Bob Turley and Don Larsen did this for a while. I’m not sure how long they did it for, but Larsen may possibly have done it in his perfect game. I’m not sure.

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