Kuroda two-hits Rangers, Yankees win 3-0

Adams has huge game in Thunder loss
Hiroki Kuroda, impact free agent

My goodness, I don’t think you could have scripted the first two games of this four-game series any better. The David Phelps-Derek Lowe tandem was fantastic on Monday and Hiroki Kuroda managed to outdo them on Tuesday, throwing a two-hit, complete-game shutout.

(Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

The Staff Ace

With CC Sabathia on the sidelines, Kuroda has assumed the role of staff ace and led his team to a win with nine brilliant innings against the highest scoring offense in baseball. Hiroki carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning for the second time this year — remember the Mets game? — and limited Texas to just two dinky little hits overall. The first was an infield single by Elvis Andrus, the second a little ten-hopper back up the middle by Michael Young. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the Rangers didn’t hit a ball well all night. There was zero hard contact.

Kuroda slayed the two-time defending AL champs with a steady diet of breaking balls, throwing 37 sliders and five curveballs out of his 109 pitches. The Rangers have a right-handed heavy lineup, and he kept feeding them sliders just off the outside corner. Some went for called strikes and others for swings and misses, but they were almost all effective. Kuroda struck out five and walked two, recording 17 of his 22 ball-in-play outs on the ground. The Rangers didn’t hit the ball out of the infield until the fourth inning, and overall 23 of the 27 outs were recorded on the infield. I’m not good enough with words to do Hiroki’s performance justice, he was absolutely masterful against a powerhouse offense. Just brilliant.

(Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Big Hit Swish

For the second night in a row, the big hit belonged to Nick Swisher. Ground ball machine Matt Harrison danced around danger — most notably a bases loaded situation in the third — to match zeroes with Kuroda through the first six innings, but the Yankees finally broke through in the seventh with his pitch count nearing the century mark.

Derek Jeter ended Harrison’s night with a one-out single to center, prompting manager Ron Washington to bring in hard-throwing righty Alexi Ogando. I know Ogando is really good, but it seemed odd to turn the two upcoming switch-hitters around to short part of the park. Oh well, I’m not complaining. Swisher’s at-bat against Ogando was just terrific, an eight-pitch battle that featured an 0-2 count and three foul balls. Swish worked the count full before tomahawking a 98 mph heater up and out of the zone into the right field seats for a two-run shot. It was a grand slam on Monday night, but he only needed to do half that to get the job done on Tuesday. Seriously, that was a fantastic at-bat.

Two runs seemed like enough given how Kuroda was pitching, but Mark Teixeira went ahead and followed up with a solo homer of his own to tack-on an insurance run. The back-to-back jacks turned a tense scoreless game into a 3-0 lead and some nice breathing room. Harrison did a nice job mixing his pitches and keeping guys off balance, but Ogando wasn’t going to throw his fastball over the plate and by the middle of this order no matter how hard he threw.

The stars of the show. (Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

Leftovers

The nine-inning complete-game shutout is the first by a Yankee since Sabathia did it against the Rays on July 10th or last season. That was the 1-0 win over Jamie Shields right before the All-Star break. Remember that? The only run of the game scored when Shields threw the ball away trying to pick a runner off third. This one was a little more routine.

Casey McGehee, in his sixth game as a Yankes, finally hit his first two singles in pinstripes. His first four hits with the team had all gone for extra bases (three doubles and a homer). Jeter (two singles) and Teixeira (double and homer) were the only other players with more than one hit. In fact, Swisher’s homer and a Russell Martin single were their only other hits period. Robinson Cano, Andruw Jones, and Curtis Granderson combined to go 0-for-10 after the top three hitters.

I have no idea who Scott & Todd are (apparently this is them), but the half-inning they were in the booth might have been the worst thing in television history. Worse than that time Charlie Sheen was in the booth. Break your pencil in half and stab both your ears bad.

Can I just take another second to talk about how good Kuroda was? Man, that guy is such a pleasure to watch when he’s on. He kinda sorta reminds me of Mike Mussina with the way he can just systematically pick apart a lineup when he gets in groove. So much fun.

Box Score, WPA Graph & Standings

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs the advanced stats, and ESPN the updated standings. The Orioles wrecked the Red Sox, so they remain six games back in the loss column. I assume the Rays will beat the lowly Mariners, so they’ll remain five back. The magic number to clinch the division is down to 42. I guess I should put the Magic Number Countdown in the sidebar at some point soon, eh? Maybe after the homestand.


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next

Halfway there. The Yankees and Rangers will play the third game of this four-game series on Wednesday night, when Freddy Garcia gives it a go against Scott Feldman. Make sure you check out RAB Tickets for any last-minute deals if you want to catch the game.

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Adams has huge game in Thunder loss
Hiroki Kuroda, impact free agent
  • CBean

    Remember all the panic about the Rangers coming to town? These first two games have been so much fun.

  • King Charles The Great

    KURODA! Is it unreasonable to think that he’d be back in pinstripes next year? Maybe another one-year deal?

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

      Man I hope so.

      • Darren

        I hope so too, but is there any reason why Kuroda won’t sign a 3 year, $33 million deal, minimum? I’m sure he could get at least that much, barring injury breakdown.

        • forensic

          Why wouldn’t he get 3 years at that money? He’ll be 38 next year and if I remember correctly, talked about going back to Japan even before this year (whether that’s contract leverage or not, I don’t know, but it’s out there).

        • Robinson Tilapia

          I’d love to request a “greatest hits” package of Darren’s complaining of the team signing old guys.

          • Darren

            Um, what? I’m not complaining about signing Kuroda. I’m suggesting that if Kuroda wants a 3 year deal, he’l easily be able to get one. I do hope he signs a 1 year deal with the Yankees, that would be perfect for us.

            I can’t remember complaining about the Yanks signing any other old guys. As soon as he was released, I wanted them to sign Lowe. I liked the Ichiro move. I even would’ve considered Matsui. Was very happy about Jeter. Etc. I think you need more coffee, sir!

    • Cnight_Ithaca

      CC-Hirok-Pineda/Pettite-Hughes/Nova

  • Dang

    By “last July 10th” you meant 2011’s, right?

  • stuart a

    Kuroda has been very good thi year. low 3 ERA..

    not much to complain about the last few days even with the hughes meltdown in the final game of the jays series.

    giving some of the pen rest also is a good thing.

    martin almost at the mendoza line… all is good in yankee land. granderson going to hit over 248 this year???not looking that way…

    • http://twitter.com/stumpwoodley Bunt Gardner

      I’m sure you’re disappointed that you don’t have a lot to complain about.

      • pat

        Arod’s been hitless for like 2 f*cking weeks. B-U-M

      • Deep Thoughts

        C’mon, give him credit for trying to be positive. This is practically blowing sunshine and roses for this guy.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          This.

    • Heisenberg’s Hat

      Batting average is nothing compared to OBP and slugging. But then, you know that.

      • Curt and Bernie

        While this is true every time you saw two players with the same OBP would you not take the one with the higher average (all else being equal)…contact skills are important

      • forensic

        Granderson’s OBP is now down to a pedestrian .330 too. He’s been terrible for awhile now and is a completely all-or-nothing hitter at this point. He has good numbers against Feldman, so maybe tomorrow he starts looking like a major league hitter again.

        • Heisenberg’s Hat

          He’s in a prolonged slump, for sure. But the .244 batting average is not worth focusing on.

          • Darren

            Sure it is. It helps tell the story of what he is more than OBP. Wouldn’t you describe him as a power hitting, high strike out, low average hitter this year? that tells you more about him than his OBP, which is average. It’s not like he’s a walk machine ala Giambi who could hit .250 but have a .387 OBP (all staats are made up, except dewayne)

            • Need Pitching & Hitting

              He’s 12th in the AL in BB%. He walks a lot. His OBP is only slightly above average because he’s hitting for a low average, not because he doesn’t walk a lot. He’s a power hitting, high strikeout, low average, high walk hitter. AVG, SLG, and OBP each tell only part of the story by themselves. But if you were to use only 1, of the 3 stats, I believe AVG has the lowest correlation to actually scoring runs.

              • Kosmo

                avg. has a huge correlation to scoring runs. I´d rather have for example a power hitting .300 hitter like Arod in his prime than a .240 hitter who has astronomical K totals. If Granderson was batting 4th you´d be throwing things at the TV, fact is you have to put the ball in play.

                • Robinson Tilapia

                  No offense, but there aren’t many things I’d rather have that ARod in his prime.

                  Agree with NP&H here.

                • Heisenberg’s Hat

                  Nobody wants a .240 hitter with astronomical K totals, unless he also walks a lot and hits a ton of homers.
                  Oh wait, Granderson does that.

              • Darren

                Thanks for making my point for me! His OBP is meh because his average sucks.

          • forensic

            It’s actually .236 now, so .244 would take a bit of a hot streak.

            But, people love to laud OBP and ignore BA, while not acknowledging that BA constitutes maybe 60-80% of your OBP. With his BA that low, it’s incredibly difficult for him to get his OBP to a good level. Therefore, it is worth looking at his BA too.

            • Kosmo

              you´re right forensic. Granderson is a great player innings 1-3, a .300 hitter, but innings 4-9 tell a different story. I don´t know how times Granderson has come up in RISP situations and fouled off very hittable pitches only to K ( more often than not)or maybe draw a walk. Working a walk is OK but an RBI single is much better.
              Folks seem to excuse the Ks and only look at the HR totals. Granderson could be the first or one of the first ballplayers to have over 40 HR and just 80 RBI for a season.

  • http://thecarsboneblog.tumblr.com Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle

    Hell of a fun game. I love what Kuroda brings to the table. For the record I read through the game thread from when I left till after I got home…First of all R-Tils: You know you love the convo about Stoya and Fister. Brian S.: The Stoya video is on my blog, check it aout, and that Family Guy sketch was hysterical. Also, I read through the game thread w/ the “teams better than the Yankees” I’m very happy that we’re two games up against the one team I said was better than them at the time. Also, Pat D. how’s unemployment treating you? I hope you’re enjoying the freedom. Finally, that Call Me Maybe video is hysterical, one of the funniest things of all time

    • Brian S.

      I didn’t see the Stoya video (I’ll look it up on youtube) but I did see something about Legend of Dragoon. I fucking loved that game.

      • http://thecarsboneblog.tumblr.com Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle

        It might be a few pages in at this point…definitely worth a watch where ever you see it though. But yeah Dragoon was a good game. I always preferred the Final Fantasy series but Dragoon was very good.

        • Brian S.

          I also love Final Fantasy. 7 and 8 the best.

          • http://thecarsboneblog.tumblr.com Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle

            Dude..those two games were my childhood. My family didn’t have much when I was younger, but after playing 8 at a friend house I saved up the bit of allowance I got, birthday money, and Christmas money, bought a second hand playstation right before PS2 came out and got 7,8, and 9 for christmas.

            • Brian S.

              We aren’t so different, you and I. 7 and 8 were the best. 9 was alright but just couldn’t measure up to the previous two. 10 was great, 12 was addicting as hell, 13 was very disappointing.

              • http://thecarsboneblog.tumblr.com Raul Ibanez AKA Tom Marvolo Riddle

                Agreed, 7 was one of the best video games of all time and 8 was pretty damned good. 9 was a good game in it’s own right but fails in comparison next to 7,8, and 10. I never got into 12, because my fucking cat destroyed the disk before I could get into it. I disagree about 13, don’t get me wrong, it was very linear, but the story was quality, the graphics incredible and the paradigm system worked brilliantly if you actually used it instead of spamming X the entire battle.

                • Brian S.

                  I liked the story in 13 but I don’t like my Final Fantasy’s so straightforward. I like to explore and get to new towns on different continents and side quests and shit.
                  I’d rank them:

                  7=8>10>12>9>13. I hear 6 is fun too but I have never played it.

  • AaronGuielWithASmile

    As an aside, Jayson Nix plays great shortstop for a guy who’s basically never been asked to man the position in the big leagues before.

    • vin

      Agreed.

  • Kramerica Industries

    Freddy vs. Feldman, and Novacaine vs. Netherlands.

    Winning these first two was huge. The next two are toss-ups. Hopefully they can nab tomorrow’s affair and go for the sweep Thursday afternoon.

  • DM

    “As a pitcher, you have to throw to any catcher that’s out there, but I think Russell knows who I am – what kind of person I am, what kind of pitcher I am and the pitches that I have,” Kuroda said. “It really helps to have Russell as a catcher.”

    For all those who think catching is only about throwing out runners, passed balls — and their offense.

    • Brian S.

      There aren’t any better options on the market. Russ is a great pitch framer. Give him 3-24 or 3-27 this offseason and be done with it.

      • I am not the droids you’re looking for…

        Way too much dough. No dice.

      • forensic

        After a season hitting under .200, you want them to give him more money than they offered before the year? No thanks.

      • Steve

        1-year/$4.5 million, team option for $8million.

  • Brian S.

    Granderson’s strikeouts got me thinking. If this lineup existed would it be productive? Would it be average? Would it suck?

    CF Curtis Granderson 28.1 K%
    SS Ian Desmond 19.5K%
    DH Adam Dunn 34.0 K%
    2B Dan Uggla 27.9K%
    RF Jason Kubel 26.4K%
    C Mike Napoli 30.1K%
    3B Pedro Alvarez 31.4K%
    1B Carlos Pena 29.0K%
    LF Drew Stubbs 27.8K%

    • Knoxvillain

      Tough one. A lot of power and on base guys, but a shit ton of strike outs. That’s over 1,000 right there. At least it’s better than double plays.

      • Brian S.

        It’s well over 1,000. That’s probably close to 1,600. Lots of home runs though.

      • Kosmo

        low and away sliders all day and all of the night.

    • Richard Leo

      it is productive

    • Pat D

      .333/.484
      .322/.503
      .340/.488
      .345/.366
      .349/.546
      .343/.429
      .306/.459
      .323/.347
      .298/.387

      I think it would probably be average, at least.

    • forensic

      They would certainly have their nights of putting big numbers on the board offensively, but would also probably reach 20K’s a time or two through the season.

      Based only on rep and my eye test, I would hope you have a pitching staff who can strike guys out at a similar rate though, because that defense looks pretty damn terrible.

    • Evan3457

      I submitted that lineup to the rudimentary lineup analyzer linked at Pinto’s Baseball Musings. It only uses the players OBA and SLG.

      The lineup given above scores 4.710 runs per game (763 total runs), which would be tied for 5th with the White Sox in r/g in the AL this year (used the 1959-2004 model).

      After eyeballing their stats, I came up with the following lineup:

      Granderson/Dunn/Kubel/Napoli/Desmond/Alvarez/Uggla/Stubbs/Pena, and that lineup scores 4.751 r/g (770 total runs).

      However, almost all lineup analysts will tell you that the most productive lineup simulation would put the best hitter 2nd, and the next best 3rd, so it’s not surprising that the best lineup the analyzer came up with was:

      Uggla/Kubel/Desmond/Dunn/Granderson/Alvarez/Stubbs/Napoli/Pena, which scores 4.838 r/g (784 total runs), good enough for 4th in the AL.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Nicely done.

  • Pat D

    “I know Ogando is really good, but it seemed odd to turn the two upcoming switch-hitters around to short part of the park.”

    This is simply because Ron Washington is not a good manager. He’s in a category with Mike Hargrove, Charlie Dressen, Burt Shotton, Charlie Grimm, Yogi Berra, Wilbert Robinson, Joe Cronin and Hughie Jennings.

    • AaronGuielWithASmile

      It’s tough to kill Washington for going to his best reliever in a high leverage spot. Obviously the move looks bad in retrospect, but I’d rather go down with Ogando than Ross or Kirkman.

      Especially considering that Teixeira is a better hitter from the right side.

    • Heisenberg’s Hat

      I didn’t think it was a bad move at all. Swish just put together a fantastic at-bat and won the battle.

      • Kosmo

        the ball Swisher hit for a HR wasn´t even a strike.

        • Evan3457

          Gameday agrees, but marginal, says Brooks FX:

          http://tinyurl.com/9ufub73

          Might have been called out if he takes it. Might not.

          • Evan3457

            Oh spit, I’m looking at pitch 6, not pitch 8. Pitch 8 is high on Brooks FX zone, too.

            Never mind.

  • SierraGrill

    Spell Check?

    • JMK

      Here’s an easy one, Scripps – s-h-u-t_t-h-e_f-u-c-k_u-p_.

      • pat

        Can you use it in a sentence?

  • forensic

    So glad I was wrong in my expectations of Kuroda. I thought his first 8-9 starts was about what I expected of him this year (though those were even a little worse than I thought). But, he’s been absolutely terrific since and if they can get him on another 1 year deal, you have to do it. Hell, I may even risk a 2 year deal, though that cringes into the 2014 budget.

    Terrific first two games. Can’t ask for better results than that.

    The highest seasonal ERA for the 4 starters these games was Harrison’s 3.31, coming in. The lowest ERA for the 4 starters in the next 2 games is Feldman’s 4.64. Might see some offenses take off these next two games now.

  • CUYanks

    Mariners up in the bottom of the ninth. Down, but at least with a fighting chance.

    • forensic

      At least that’s something from a Smoak-type bat…

      • CUYanks

        Have to love the 5 infielders alignment.

  • Pasta Stumbling Sojo

    Anyone else watching the Rays game? Fernando Rodney, muhahaha.

  • Roger Maris’s Adopted Stepson

    If you ever watched WWF wrestling in the early 90s, Todd Pettingill of Scott and Todd hosted the Saturday morning clip shows on USA. He also sometimes interviewed wrestlers for the bigger Monday show and the Pay-Per-View events. He might also have sometimes done ringside announcing. Occasionally he got beat up, which was the only good part.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I was going to get to the Scott & Todd comment. Pettingill was the precursor to Michael Cole and was, somehow, much more annoying.

  • Rey22

    I think it’s time to start calling Kuroda the staff co-ace rather than just the de-factor fill in ace, no?

  • Need Pitching & Hitting

    Eric Thames!!

  • Get Phelps Up

    Well done, Mariners.

  • forensic

    And Thames shoots the arrow into Rodney’s…

    Well, you can guess the rest…

    • Pasta Stumbling Sojo

      Nuts?

    • Heisenberg’s Hat

      Why can’t WE do that to him?

  • Kramerica Industries

    With a little help of a Carlos Pena miscue, and Fernando Rodney pitching for the 4th straight day…

    M’s score 2 in the 9th to walk off the Rays 3-2. That’s fantastic.

    • forensic

      4th straight day? That almost reeks of desperation for a team that seemingly shouldn’t have any.

      And ironically I thought Pena was the strong point of that K-prone team posted earlier. Thank you for tonight though, Carlos.

      • Kramerica Industries

        Trusting what I saw from the Sun Sports’ telecast myself.

        Besides, I know he pitched the last two nights for certain. The fact that he pitched in a close game Saturday doesn’t surprise me at all.

        I hope this was the kind of loss needed to knock the Rays back to reality. I’m much more comfortable with the O’s being in 2nd place.

        • Get Phelps Up

          4 straight days is right, although in one of them he only threw 4 pitches.

          • Kramerica Industries

            He did have to warm up, though.

  • Rocky Road Redemption

    Okay, see the phrases good and bad manager thrown around a lot, so I’m going to use this opportunity to get something off my chest now.

    There is absolutely no way, at all, to prove if you’re a good or bad manager.

    Think about it. My impression has always been that RAB hated Torre. When asked, “How did he win all of those championships and make the playoffs all those times?” the response is always along the lines of, “With those teams he better have done that well!”

    I mean, the dude won 4 WS and went to 6. He managed the best dynasty since the Big Red Machine.

    Now take Buck Showalter. He has the reputation of being a good manager, and from what I’ve seen of him I agree. Yet I can recall just a couple of days ago people who were annoyed he was being called a good manager because he didn’t win any championships!

    So what then? Was Casey Stengel a good manager? Or Miller Huggins?

    How ELSE are we supposed to judge whether a manager’s good or not except for wins and championships? It’s a classic catch-22. If a manager wins a lot, he didn’t do much because his team is awesome. If his team doesn’t win, well, how can we say if he’s a good manager?

    Well you know what? I’m going to judge managers on the objective data we actually have-wins and championships. So yeah, I think Torre is a pretty good manager. And I think that before I put Girardi on his level he’ll have to win a lot more games than he’s won right now.

    /End rant

    • http://fendersonandhampton.com Cuso

      So you won’t call Girardi a good manager because he “only” won one, and you’re going to reserve judgment.

      But Torre “is” good because he won 4?

      And you agree that Buck is a good manager because he’s won zero.

      So you’re claiming objectivity on the basis of who you like. Is that about the gist of the rant?

      • Rocky Road Redemption

        Fair enough about Buck, I worded it badly. Let me change my wording to, “And from what I’ve seen of him maybe they’re right”.

        My criteria is wins and championships. Flawed? Yeah. But at least I HAVE criteria. Torre is bad because he only wins with good teams, Buck is bad because he doesn’t win even though he has the reputation of being good…basically what I see is that whether or not a manager is judged as “good” or “bad” is based on nothing.

        I think wins aren’t necessarily a be-all, end-all stat (I still don’t think Buck is a BAD manager, but when judging managers I’m going to look at what wins and championships. There’s some leeway but with four world championships, 6 appearances, and 12 straight playoff appearances, I’m think it’s safe to say that Torre was a pretty damn good manager.

        So yeah, jury is still out on Girardi. I think he’s one of the better managers in the league, of course, but here at RAB I see this idea that he’s this massive upgrade on Torre. I don’t buy it yet, sorry.

      • Rocky Road Redemption

        And wait a minute-I never said I wouldn’t call Girardi a good manager. I said I wouldn’t put him at Torre’s level. Big difference.

        • Steve (different one)

          Whenever Girardi does something nutty, I just take a moment and think about Clownshoes Valentine, and think “at least the players didn’t meet with ownership about how much they despise Girardi and that Girardi literally sleeps on the job”….low bar, I know.

    • Brian S.

      A team is only as good as the players on it. Managers don’t mean much.

    • Brian S.

      A team is only as good as the players on it. Managers don’t mean much.

    • forensic

      Short-term: I judge a manager based on him putting players in a position to succeed, which is why I think it’s difficult to judge without watching a team on a daily basis.

      Long-term: I think wins/losses can be a good general guideline.

      As an in between, I would also judge the trendline of a team as to whether someone has passed their time, which clearly Torre did towards the end.

      • Heisenberg’s Hat

        Yep. A good manager makes the right moves as much as possible. I think Girardi does this, for the most part. He can be infuriating when he does stupid shit, like in the 2010 playoffs when he was issuing intentional walks every game. I believe most sensible fans recognize this and call him on it.

        Yet there are some managers who I think are flat out terrible, like Mike Scioscia and Bob Brenly, and they’ve both won championships. If that doesn’t prove the “the playoffs are a crapshoot” theory, I don’t know what does.

        • Kosmo

          Brenly was terrible, he was lucky to inherit Buck´s team with the 2 -headed dragon of Schilling and Johnson. I´ll always believe NY lost the 2001 WS not that the D-Backs won it. Bad D did them in.

          • Heisenberg’s Hat

            The Yanks had NO offense that year. You have to remember that. Brosius was terrible, Justice was terrible, Tino wasn’t very good, O’Neill was retiring, Soriano hadn’t come into his own yet. Posada, Jeter and Bernie had good years, but none of them did anything against the Diamondbacks (other than Jeter’s homer off of Kim). The D-Backs were clearly the better team that year, sadly.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      I agree with the overall point, but not the logic you’re putting behind it, or even how the Showalter stuff went down a few days ago.

      • Rocky Road Redemption

        Late to the party, but what is your logic then?

  • Rocky Road Redemption

    At what point are we just going to call Kuroda our Ace, full stop?

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      October 31.

      • Rocky Road Redemption

        Hopefully by then we’ll still be playing!

        • Need Pitching & Hitting

          Yeah, that’s what I meant. October 31 will be the day of Kuroda’s Series clinching Game 6 win.

          /dreaming

          • Kramerica Industries

            Go for the sweep!

          • Evan3457

            If they can win a title with a rotation of CC, AJ, and Pettite, I’d think they can win one with CC, Kuroda and Pettitte and whoever.

            /injuries ignor’d
            /offense differences also

  • Dino Velvet

    We need to start a petition asking john Henry to extend Valentine’s contract.

  • Jimmy McNulty

    Wow, awesome start by Kuroda. Probably the best start a Yankee’s had all season. Hell of a game. Nice to see Teixeira getting some work done with the wood, hopefully him Granderson and Cano will get 30HRs. This team’s definitely flawed, but they’re playing pretty well in spite of that.

  • Nathan

    Darn! The night that my friends could find a sitter for their kids to go out to a nice dinner and Kuroda throws a gem…oh well, at least the Yankees won!

    Man…if Hiroki keeps it up, the Yankees are going to probably have to give him a nice raise if they expect him to sign another one year deal!

  • Jimmy McNulty

    Drive Time radio seems to be a place where unbearable assholes are granted permanent asylum.

    • Heisenberg’s Hat

      If you have the time to call in to a radio program, and wait on hold for two hours, just so Mike Francesa can yell at you, you got problems. Spending that much time desperately trying to talk to some morons on the radio? Desperate cry for help.

      • Jimmy McNulty

        I was referring to those who talk on Drive Time radio, but this is also true.

        • Deep Thoughts

          Agreed. I can’t believe this is the same Scott Shannon who was so annoying all those years ago with Ross Britton on the Z Morning Zoo on Z100.

  • forensic

    Mike, earlier today in your Chavez post you mentioned an article involving quotes from Billy Eppler. Could this be the article you were looking for?

    http://www.nj.com/yankees/inde....._is_a.html

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

      I think so, thanks.

  • Mark

    I can be your Hiro baby
    I can kiss take away the pain
    I will stand by you forever
    You can take my breath away

    Would you swear,
    That you’ll always be mine? (at least for another one year contract)
    Or would you lie?
    Would you run and hide? (into retirement)
    Am I in too deep?
    Have I lost my mind?
    I don’t care…
    You’re here, tonight

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Gracias, Enrique.

  • ADG

    Hiroki KO’d ya!!

    anybody?

    • Brian S.

      Not bad

  • captain kiwi

    just got in – missed the game and the thread but SO happy to see my boy hirok did work. AWESOME win.

  • RetroRob

    This HR approach will never work in the postseason when the Yankees won’t be facing teams like the Rangers or pitchers like Dempster and Harrison.

    On second thought…

    • Evan3457

      Do you mean “oh, wait” rather than “on second thought”?

  • LarryM.,Fl.

    Great game by Hiroki and Nick, it was a pleasure to watch. The Yanks have a strong bench with the left side being all bench players last night, Nix, McGehee and Jones. Then Ichiro comes in and replaces Jones in the field.

    As far as Washington replacing Harrison with Oganda. This was a question for me. Especially without stats the Yanks have had success against Ogando in the past. Throwing a heater at 97-99 is impressive but when its straight, the Yanks are fastball hitters the equation falls out of line to our favor.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I was wrong about you too, Hiroki Kuroda, at the star of the season. So, so, so wrong.

    I wanted the team to acquire him last year and jumped up and down when he was signed this year. I was then so down on him for a while. He’s now exceeded every expectation from me.

    Now, for the important stuff….

    Really, Axisa? Not knowing Scott & Todd? Scott Shannon’s been on the radio in NYC since I was a kid. He did the Z Morning Zoo on Z-100 before Elvis Duran took over. Sometime during my exile to South Florida, he moved to WPLJ. Jim Kerr is a carbonite chamber somewhere, apparently.

    Maybe they sucked in the booth, and probably did with the fake drawwwwl, but I find them hysterical on the radio, and this is coming from someone who wanted to kill Todd Pettingill as WWF stooge in the 90’s.

    • Kosmo

      interesting stuff !

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Not really. :)

        • Kosmo

          this !

    • Darren

      Yikes. You might want to keep the fact that you find Scott and Todd hysterical to yourself. You just lost about 90% of your credibility.

      • Deep Thoughts

        I have to admit, Scott and Ross were hilarious when I heard them in middle school.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          Ross was the other guy. I had forgotten.

          I remember back when they had the weekly birthday giveaway and would give away, like, 10K if you were the first caller when they announced your birthday. I’d practically be late to school just waiting for them to say my birthday. Finally, they did one day and I immediately picked up the phone, Scott answers, I yell out “that’s my birthday!” and Scott replied….”That’s nice. You called the request line.”

          We used to hound the afternoon guy, Magic Matt Allen, every day just to get on the air. We did a few times.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        I didn’t realize I had credibility.

  • Eddard

    These past two ballgames show why the Yankees are still the team to beat in the AL. Texas don’t have any pitching. Paulie said yesterday Harrison would be their #1. They don’t have CJ, they don’t have Yankee killer Colby Lewis. We crush Derek Holland every time we see him. Dumpster is an NL pitcher, like AJ. I think I’ll put Hiroki as the best FA signing Cashman has ever made, Chavy a close 2nd.

    • Kosmo

      Right now NY projects as the best team in the AL. The Rays can ride with their pitching staff into the playoffs. The Angels if they can catch fire would concern me more than Texas. Still a month and 1/2 left to the season.

  • maniv

    I have been reading your blog daily for about 3 years and I have to give you guys a lot of credit for beleiving in Kuroda and his possibilities in pinstripes for a long time. He is a very good pitcher. I just hope the Yankees owners get some advice from you from time to time…

  • The Real Greg

    Best of all, the Rays lost in walkoff fashion to the M’s which increases our division lead to 6 games. And they are going to face the King before going to L.A., so the pressure is off us for now.

  • Deep Thoughts

    Yesterday was a lot of fun, but it’s a good time to remind everyone how important luck and timing are in a short series like the playoffs.

    Phelps, Lowe, Kuroda, and Harrison all had good enough stuff to win. Last night’s game came down to a couple of good at-bats and/or a mistake pitch. The night before, who knows what happens without the pickoffs or if the great-hitting Rangers lay off some balls out of the zone.

    It’s just as crazy to be overconfident after taking a series from the Rangers as it is to be borderline-suicidal after a losing streak.

    “To get into the playoffs you have to be good. To win in the playoffs you have to be lucky.” –Jeter’s favorite baseball cliche