Game 55: Sole Possession


(REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine)

Baseball math is weird, and I don’t just mean the advanced stats. Batting average is weird because sacrifice flies don’t count as an at-bat. ERA is weird because a homerun can be an unearned run. The standings are weird because right now, the Yankees are half-a-game back of the Rays (and Orioles) for sole possession of first place in the AL East. There’s no such thing as a half-game, you either win or lose. With a win tonight (and some help from the Red Sox), the Yanks will be sole possession of first place in the AL East for the first time since April 21st, after the big 15-9 comeback win in Fenway Park. It’s been a while. Here’s the batting order…

SS Derek Jeter
CF Curtis Granderson
DH Alex Rodriguez
2B Robinson Cano
1B Mark Teixeira
LF Raul Ibanez
RF Nick Swisher
3B Eric Chavez
Russell Martin

RHP Ivan Nova

Tonight’s game starts a little after 7pm ET and can be seen on YES locally and ESPN2 nationally. Enjoy.

Brett Gardner Update: Gardner (elbow) was sore after hitting the cage yesterday and took today off. It’s nothing serious and he will play in a minor league rehab game tomorrow, likely with High-A Tampa.

David Robertson Update: Robertson (oblique) will throw batting practice tomorrow and if that goes well, he’ll appear in his first minor league rehab game on Sunday. Hooray for that.

Categories : Game Threads


  1. #28 in 2012 says:

    Nice photo, haha…

  2. Pat D says:

    Let’s go Dumples!

  3. CapitalT says:

    Did they say Soor in the elbow or just from finally getting off the couch for the first time in a month? Elbow would have me worried because Gardner doesn’t seam like a fast healer

  4. Havok9120 says:

    Who’s Alex Cobb? And why have I seen him referred to as Bob?

  5. Cuso says:


    I am brilliant. This has nothing to do with anything, but to this point it’s exactly the way I thought it would go for that team.

  6. Mike Nitabach says:

    Let’s do this!

  7. I like that Ivan is striking more guys out, but I think a lot of that has to do with his pitches have been up in the zone more, which is also leading to him being hit more. His fastball is coming in a little hotter than last year, so he’s blowing away weaker hacks, but getting beat by better swings.

  8. dkidd says:

    melky 1 for 1 with a double so far

    ops stands at .949

    not a bash at anyone (cash man etc) just amazed at the season he’s having

  9. Cuso says:

    10-8 game, I smell it

  10. Arya says:

    Nova needs to turn it around tonight. This is a weak offense minus their best hitter. He can’t keep going out there and leaving pitch after pitch belt high. What happened to his sinking fastball?

  11. Waldman just said Nova was sent down last year to “work on his slider” anybody with half a brain knows that he was sent down to make room for (IMO) a completely undeserving Hughes.

  12. Mike Nitabach says:


  13. Mike Nitabach says:

    SO on a low pitch and GIDP are a good sign so far.

  14. Havok9120 says:


  15. jjyank says:

    Ahhh my last in-market game for a loooong time. Hopefully Nova pulls out a win for me.

  16. Havok9120 says:

    By the way, I loved the pregame ceremony with the Wounded Warriors Foundation and that Swish has made that his new charity project.

  17. Mike Nitabach says:

    Ground ball is good.

  18. Mike Nitabach says:

    Harsh that Matsui’s hitting .150.

    And another ground ball!

  19. Mike Nitabach says:

    Another nice inning for Nova.

  20. RkyMtnYank says:

    Really liking the ground balls.

  21. jjyank says:

    Wait, WAT? Joey Votto has pulled ONE foul ball down the line in FOUR YEARS? INSANE!!

  22. Dela G says:

    Tex destroyed that

  23. Hummingbird S. says:

    crushed that hanger

  24. Greg says:

    Hanging curve

  25. Mike Nitabach says:

    I missed it in the kitchen!!

    What kind of pitch was it???

  26. dkidd says:

    dead texy

  27. Mike Nitabach says:

    Aah: hanging curve.

  28. Havok9120 says:

    It was a HR in YS3, thus it doesn’t count because its a bandbox. Plus it would never happen in the playoffs.


    • Greg says:

      Even ESPN would not make the bandbox arguement because both teams thrive on it

      • Havok9120 says:

        They make it all the time. At least in my experience. All our guys’ numbers “shouldn’t count as much compared to other guys’ because the Yankees play half their games in a bandbox” is something I hear every year immediately before the season, in the run up to the playoffs, and around the time awards are being decided.

  29. Dela G says:

    cone is such a great commentator. That fact cannot be stated enough. What a great guy in the booth

  30. Greg says:

    Coney up on the hot sabermetrics

  31. First homer of the season for this Cobb kid. We hit to many homers, there’s no way we can beat good teams with all these homers.

  32. Mike Nitabach says:

    Look at all those frigging empty seats behind the plate. I thought supposedly they try to move people back there so it doesn’t look empty all through the game?

    • RkyMtnYank says:

      One of my biggest issues since this stadium opened. 50% of the seats back there are almost never filled, very sad to see!

    • RetroRob says:

      They can’t. Those are the expensive seats, so no way will they move people into them when other people there paid full price.

  33. Mike Nitabach says:

    Another ground out!

  34. Greg says:

    Coney’s at it again

  35. Hummingbird S. says:

    the dude didnt even try to get out of the way…

  36. Mike Nitabach says:

    He is really keeping the ball down or up and in.

  37. Havok9120 says:

    Good Ivan may have shown up tonight.

  38. Greg says:

    Both pitchers are pitching well; keeping the ball down and getting ground balls

  39. vicki says:

    uh oh. we’ve got thunder.

  40. Greg says:

    Russell has to block that with his body

  41. Havok9120 says:

    Darn. Would’ve been nice to get 2 there.

    Maddon’s a genius!

  42. Damnit I walk away for ten minutes and there’s a runner on third. What happened?

  43. Mike Nitabach says:


  44. RetroRob says:

    Matusi’s had dermabrasion.

  45. Mike Nitabach says:


  46. jjyank says:

    Let’s get some insurance runs boys! Nova’s looked good, and I like him…but a one-run lead isn’t inspiring with a guy that’s given up so many extra base hits. Get it done!

  47. Havok9120 says:

    Whew. I had horrible expectations when that was hit.

  48. Curious, for you guys watching the TV, when Coney starts going on about sabermetrics does Kay try to argue back with silliness still, or does he just sit there in confusion/silence?

  49. Mike Nitabach says:

    Srsly. Let’s score some more RUNS.

  50. Mike Nitabach says:

    That last pitch looked hittable!

  51. Cy Pettitte says:

    damn should have been a 2 run HR

  52. Robbie Cano!!! TO MANY HOMERZ!!!!!!

  53. Need Pitching says:

    hmmm… if only there was a runner on base

  54. Mike Nitabach says:

    CANO!!!!!!!!!!!!! DON’TCHA KNOW!

  55. jjyank says:

    Fallacy of the predetermined outcome, and all that, but sucks A-Rod got thrown out. Though I don’t really blame him.

    • RetroRob says:

      Yeah. His move was correct. Bad luck the ball bounced right back into the catcher’s glove. He almost evaded the tag. Still not 100% he didn’t.

  56. jjyank says:

    Absolute lazer by Robbie. Amazing swing.

  57. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Hoping for Nova to avoid having that one bad inning and keep up the streak of great starts here.

  58. RkyMtnYank says:

    Nova emulating Andy, no way that can be a bad thing … according to Coney.

  59. Havok9120 says:

    Welp, the Orioles have made their big move for pitching.

    Jamie Moyer. For relz.

  60. Mike Nitabach says:

    Kay is talking on and on about Pettite’s beard. He really doesn’t know shit about actual baseball, does he?

  61. Tom says:

    Is that a slider or a cutter that he’s throwing at 89mph? Seems awful hard for a true slider (only ~4-5mph off his 4 seam velcotity)

    Either way he’s been sharp with that pitch. Fastball command has also been much better, seems like he’s missed location badly only once or twice so far.

  62. RetroRob says:

    I was at that “flipper” game. I turned to my friend and said I’m pretty sure McDowell just gave us all the finger. I wasn’t booing him (I don’t boo Yankees, seems idiotic), but most fans where I was sitting seemed to love he did it.

  63. Havok9120 says:

    The 20 year old just tackled two kids for that ball. And somehow didn’t get it.

  64. Mike Nitabach says:

    Is this Cobb dude related to Ty Cobb?

  65. Mike Nitabach says:

    Damn cat is staring at me freakishly.

  66. flamingo says:

    Nova’s given up one hit so far?!

  67. vicki says:

    the good news? no angsting about risp tonight.

  68. LiterallyFigurative says:

    Does this game count, since the Rays can’t hit?

  69. Mike Nitabach says:

    YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!! Second deep ball by Matsui.

  70. Win by the time I get home yankees, I have to leave work now.

  71. Tom says:

    Maybe it’s the recent string of bad homeplate umps, but the guy behind the plate tonight seems pretty solid. He’s called a few low strikes, but I like that he hasn’t called the outside strike simply because it hits the catcher’s glove.

    ESPN mentioned he was getting some high remarks around he league.

  72. RkyMtnYank says:

    The Yanks only have 2 hits as well, though both are homers.

  73. your mom says:

    This skrike zone. . . . . .

  74. Robinson Tilapia says:

    My mother-in-law won’t get to see the Yankees face R.A. Dickey this weekend. She’ll be crushed.

  75. Mike Nitabach says:


  76. flamingo says:

    I hope Girardi lets him start the ninth.

  77. jjyank says:

    SuperNova is back!

  78. Need Pitching says:

    hmmm …. 99 pitches, 2-run lead, top of the order due up in the ninth

    Nova or Soriano for the ninth?

  79. flamingo says:


  80. Mike Nitabach says:


  81. jjyank says:

    Yay insurance run!

  82. Mike Nitabach says:

    That just made the keep-in-Nova decision a little easier.

  83. mike_h says:

    man Wise can fly

  84. Mike Nitabach says:


  85. Need Pitching says:

    Chavez’ first RISP hit of the year!!!

  86. flamingo says:

    A hit with RISP is just giftwrap on the present this game’s been.

  87. Mike Nitabach says:

    Cobb salad.

  88. jjyank says:

    Oh Eric. I always wanted you on the team, despite the hate you got in the offseason.

  89. RkyMtnYank says:

    No reason for Nova not to come out for the ninth now, good for him, just like Phil.

  90. Need Pitching says:

    I love how the Yankee starters are making the bridge to Soriano largely irrelevant lately.

  91. jjyank says:

    I haven’t been around in game threads the last few days, but wow, it really does get quiet here during (hopefully in this case) wins. Not that I’m really complaining, but it’s kinda funny.

  92. mike_h says:

    Girardi’s gotta let Nova finish the game, he’s at 99 pitches season high of 114. I think he can do it

  93. Mike Nitabach says:

    How many times is Kay gonna tell us that the Rays offense stinks?

  94. mike_h says:


  95. Greg says:

    Well that ends that

  96. RkyMtnYank says:

    Bad defense by the Yanks there letting him get to third!

  97. Need Pitching says:

    Ok, don’t mess around, take him out

  98. Mike Nitabach says:

    Uh, oh. BTB three-baggers.

  99. jjyank says:

    Boo. Really wanted Nova to have that CGSO.

  100. Tony says:

    I miss the Nova from the first 8 innings

  101. mike_h says:

    damn, would have been nice to get a complete game shutout

  102. Mike Nitabach says:

    He wasn’t keeping it down this inning.

    In this situation, they will pitch and play defense as if there are no runners on base, right?

  103. Need Pitching says:

    Great game by Nova
    Hopefully he can keep the ground balls coming

  104. Robinson Tilapia says:

    C’mon, Soriano. Nail this fucker down.

  105. First time lawng time says:

    Did the crowd really not cheer for Nova? Wow.

    • Mike Nitabach says:

      They gave him an awesome cheer. There just aren’t that many people at the game.

    • RkyMtnYank says:

      I think they did, but maybe just my internet audio, crowds at ballgames are probably becoming a thing of the past.

  106. Robinson Tilapia says:

    So many nice commenters not around AGAIN tonight. They must all be on a cruise together or something.

  107. Mike Nitabach says:

    C’mon, Sori. One more.

  108. Robinson Tilapia says:

    Ninth inning drama: Not needed tonight.

  109. flamingo says:

    What a great win!

  110. Robinson Tilapia says:


  111. Need Pitching says:

    Matsui getting closer and closer to a HR

  112. Mike Nitabach says:

    YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Another long-ball out for Matsui.

  113. Need Pitching says:

    Does it count as a 1-2-3 inning if he doesn’t start the inning?

  114. Foghorn Leghorn says:

    Yanks win/sox lose…within seconds of each other…its Miller time!

  115. Mike Nitabach says:

    Os won, so the Yanks are still a half game out, but even in the loss column.

  116. Bunt Gardner says:

    Great game, Nova!

  117. pat says:

    Nova fackin BALLS

  118. Foghorn Leghorn says:

    Unlike Daniel Bad…Nova ain’t going to AAA this year!

  119. pistol pete says:

    Nova was awesome tonight and now is 7 and 2 and 23 and 6 over the past two years. Love Nova, he’s a winner and I don’t want to hear about his stats.

  120. pistol pete says:

    Soriano is 7 for 7 and with Robbie coming back the pen’s going to get even stronger.

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