Yanks have no answer for Lester in loss to Sox

O'Brien homers again in rare Staten Island win
Mailbag: Trading Curtis Granderson

Source: FanGraphs

Losing a game is one thing, but losing a game because of Pedro Ciriaco and Nick Punto is another matter entirely. It doesn’t help that the Yankees put the leadoff man on-base in four of nine innings and failed to bring him in all four times. So it goes. Let’s recap…

  • 5-3: Jon Lester pitched very well for the Red Sox after skirting around some jams early, getting 14 outs on the ground compared to three in the air. Eight of those 14 were ground balls to Punto at third base, who made every play — routine, spectacular, or other. That got annoying in a hurry.
  • Phelpsie: David Phelps pitched well enough but not as well as his pitching line — 6.2 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 7 K — would lead you to believe. There were a number of hard-hit balls right at people, and frankly giving up extra-base hits to Punto is about as inexcusable as it gets. Don’t get me wrong, Phelps certainly did the job. Giving up a homer to Adrian Gonzalez is nothing to be ashamed of, but I thought he was more impressive in his start against the Rangers for sure.
  • NOffense: The Yankees went a cool 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position, the kind of RISPFAIL we haven’t experienced in a few weeks now. Nick Swisher (three singles) was a one-man army, but the 3-4-5 hitters went a combined 0-for-10 with three strikeouts. Robinson Cano is in a serious funk, a 1-for-23 kind of funk. At least Curtis Granderson — who doubled and accounted for the team’s only run with a solo jack — is showing some signs of life.
  • Leftovers: It seemed very odd that Joe Girardi went to great lengths to matchup in the eighth inning but left Cody Eppley in to face two lefties in the ninth. That led to an insurance run … Eric Chavez pinch-hit late and doubled, so at least these two days on the bench haven’t cooled him off … seriously, figure out how to get Ciriaco out. Dude has a .299 OBP in over 3,500 minor league plate appearances. Just for the sake of pride at the point, figure it out … the Yankees drew only two walks, the fifth time in their last seven games they drew two or fewer. That’s not Yankees baseball, get back to working those counts, fellas.

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, FanGraphs some additional stats, and ESPN the updated standings. The Orioles won and the Rays are getting pounded by the Angels, so it’s safe to assume both will be six back in the loss column when you wake up. and the lolworthy Angels blew an eight-run lead to the Rays, so they are now six and five games back, respectively. I hope they kept the receipt for Zack Greinke. Anyway, Hiroki Kuroda gets the ball against Josh Beckett in the rubber game on Sunday night, so make sure you check out RAB Tickets if you’d rather watch the game in person than listen to ESPN act like the Red Sox are still in contention.

O'Brien homers again in rare Staten Island win
Mailbag: Trading Curtis Granderson
  • Rob

    Yeah sometimes these guys are perplexing in their ineptitude. I would have to chalk this one up to just not really being too concerned about winnning. Kind of a lazy Saturday afternoon where nobody could get it done. It definitely highlights a common shortcoming in an otherwise excellent season. Unfortunately this RISP thing is going to play a huge role in whether the Yankees are a World Champion or jsut another first round exit this season.

    • Real Siskel

      I agree w Rob. My gut tells me this team will not get past good 1 and 2 starters in the first round.

      • JohnnyC

        So is Scherzer is a 2, 3 or a 4? Because it was Scherzer not Verlander who stymied the Yankees last year. Good narrative. Just not particularly true.

        • Kramerica Industries

          104 pitches in five innings, I believe.

          That was such a frustrating game.

        • Big Members Only (formerly RI$P FTW)

          Your trying to say someone’s gut has a narrative for a future and you’ve disproved the future? Stop trying to brown nose.

      • Real Ebert

        Thumbs down.

        Plus you’re dead.

    • JohnnyC

      Interesting narrative. However, they’ve hit over .300 with RISP since the end of June.

  • Kramerica Industries

    Pedro Ciriaco is 15-29 against the Yankees this season, with two four hit games, and two GW hits as well.

    This is Howie Kendrick-type shit right now. And Howie Kendrick is a much better player than Ciriaco.

    • JohnnyC

      It’s a flaw in scouting when a scrub hits your entire staff. It’s more than reasonable to expect one or two pitchers to get killed by any particular hitter but an entire staff?

  • Kramerica Industries

    C.J. Wilson was given an 8-0 lead to work with.

    And then he gives up 7 in the 5th inning.

    I swear, if the Rays win this game tonight…

    • YanksFanInBeantown

      Let’s focus on what’s really important here: Wilson just effed up my fantasy team this week.

      • Kramerica Industries

        Reminds of the game in Chicago last year when Burnett couldn’t get through 5 innings after being spotted a 13-1 lead.

        Except the Angels have a legit chance at losing this game.

        • CUYanks

          Longoria might play the field in a week or so, they report. If I were them I’d just keep him at DH.

          • Kevin

            I watched the game online,C.J. Wilson forgot how to throw strikes. Not even our free swingers would have swung at the stuff he was throwing.

    • DT

      holy fuck, Angels pitching is complete shit against the rays.

      • Kramerica Industries

        And this comes on the first night all season where their offense has actually had any success against Rays pitching.

    • Kramerica Industries

      …and now it’s tied.

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

        They Angels aren’t going to just blow this lead, they’re going to lose by about six runs.

        • Kramerica Industries

          Sounds about right.

          At least this absurd Rays offensive tear will come to an end very soon.

        • CUYanks

          But Alfredo Aceves isn’t pitching?

    • Pasta Stumbling Sojo

      Definitely rooting for the Rays to lose, but if they win, at least it’s against the Angels and their supposedly unbeatable pitching.

      • Kramerica Industries

        C.J. Wilson’s WHIP is over 1.3.

        The Rays and Nationals have excellent pitching staffs. The Angels only compare in terms of name value. I’m starting to wonder why we all feared that team after they got Greinke, myself included – navigable offense aside from Trout, honestly, a really shitty BP, and the most overrated rotation in MLB.

        Other than the fact that they’re the Angels.

        • CUYanks

          Downs and Frieri had been lights out, and I don’t consider Albert Pujols as navigable. Other than that, though, they have a good top few in the rotation but then a really bad back part. I still think they’ve gotten a bit unlucky with their record.

        • DT

          Trumbo has fallen back to earth

    • Kramerica Industries


      10-8 now.

    • Kramerica Industries

      …and ballgame.

      Go fuck yourselves, Angels.

  • Edmond

    It upsets me to no end, to see a team with this much talent to lose to bunch of zoo infested v(alentine)ermins! I keep seeing the same type of lineup from joe, move up grandy, sink Martin to 9, move up Ichiro to 6! Dude, try to cluster players who are hitting! Joe wake up!

    • JohnnyC

      It’s clear Joe and Cash think they have a decent cushion for the division. A lot of utting down their decisions are based on biding their time until the reinforcements arrive. It’s a dangerous philosophy. But when your team is basically old and infirm (the bench is even older than the starting lineup), you’ve painted yourself into a corner. I’m surprised he doesn’t rotate his coaching staff as well to give them a rest. I hear they’re shutting down Rob Thomson for 7 days in order to rehab the arm he uses to wave runners home.

      • Len S.

        Okay, I get that Jeter, Ichiro, and who ever plays third base is kinda old. But the rest of the starting lineup is in their prime ages of their career. Plus Jeter and Chavez are having great offensive seasons. Age isn’t slowing them down. Chavez has always been made out of glass. I agree that Ibanez and Jones are up there in years as far as the bench is concerned. Kinda don’t get the whole “old’ thing overall.

        • Heisenberg’s Hat

          Andruw Jones isn’t actually old. He’s just been around forever. And his career fell off a cliff before he turned 30.

        • Havok9120

          Pretty much this. Our old guys have been playing better than any alternatives that exist, and playing pretty darn well overall. I’m not sure how we can argue age has been the problem this season.

  • CUYanks

    And maybe it’s about time for a moment of silence for any baseball pitched to Giancarlo Stanton in Colorado.

    • The Real Greg

      He did it again, huh?

  • Robinson Tilapia

    He may be having a nightmarish season, but Jon Lester is still an excellent major league pitcher. If you face him enough times in a season, he’s bound to get you at least once. No shame in this loss. Nice effort by Phelps. It’s a nice luxury to have him stretched out. The team may consider having Nova get his stuff back in the bullpen (or not – still one start removed from an excellent start), or allow Joba to try to get his stuff back in a less intense environment.

  • CUYanks

    Rangers and Red Sox are good offenses. Have to be happy with what we’re seeing from Phelps.

  • JohnnyC

    Brad Mills has been fired by the Astros. Put him on the shortlist to replace Bobby V. The media wants Varitek but can’t see either Cherington or Lucchino handing job over to someone with no coaching experience whatsoever.

    • CUYanks

      Brad Mills hit one HR in his entire career, but can you name his claim to fame?

      • Bunt Gardner

        Nolan Ryan’s 3509th strikeout.

      • Havok9120

        Is this a trivia question or are you trying to make a point?

        The former would be awesome, because its Brad Mills and you have a trivia question about him. The latter would be really, really silly.

    • rogue

      Luccino is taking heat from the Boston media/fans since he overruled Cherington and hired Valentine.

  • Rich in NJ

    Phelps is being forced to surmount his learning curve as a ML starter pretty quickly, so under the circumstances, he has done a good job. Unfortunately, this may be his last start for now.

  • CUYanks

    Brent Lillibridge just hit his 3rd hr in his last 6 games. Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

  • Kevin

    The Rays will now be five games back after tonight..what a chokejob by the Angels.

    • JLC 776

      Tampa now officially worries me…

      • The Real Greg

        If they get by their two series against Texas and they are still in this range, then I will start to worry about them.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Tampa should always worry you.

  • Darren

    Do you really think the RISPfail is because the Yankees just weren’t trying today? And that the failure to get out Ciriaco is because of a failure in scouting and/or a lack of focus? The analysis for both of these issues seems ridiculous – emblematic of the whole “the Yankees better win or I want my money back and the season was a failure bullshit.”

    In light of the RISPy success of the past few weeks/months, isn’t this nothing more than the SSS there is?
    And Ciriaco is just pulling some Geronimo Berroa type badassery. Nothing you can do. For contrast, the failure to pitch Big Papi in or to hit him/make him uncomfortable for so many years seemed like a failure in Yankees approach. this is more some “you cant predict baseball” stuff.

    • jjyank

      I agree. Any notion that the Yankees “weren’t trying”, or “weren’t concerned about winning” is absolute bullshit. Same thing with a “failure of the scouting department”. If it were that cut and dry, no marginal player would every go on a hot streak. Yeah, Ciriaco has been a pain in the ass that should have never happened, but like Darren said, explaining that is right up John Sterling’s alley.

      Shit happens. Not everything that happens in baseball (or any sport, really) has to be defined by concrete successes or failures with specific people to credit or blame. Sometime shit just happens. Move on to the next game and hope Kuroda has his A game.

  • RetroRob

    Pedro Ciriaco is hitting .343 on the year, with 15 hits against the Yankees, 21 hits against all other teams. Back out the Yankees, and he’s hitting .276, with barely a walk or an extra base hit.

    His career right now is hitting against the Yankees. End this nonsense starting tomorrow.

  • rogue

    Yes, it sucks that they lost to Boston. It’s not the end of the world. And no, the Yankees won’t win out the remainder of their games.

  • Edmond

    Yeah! The yanks aren’t expected to win the rest of their games, but if anyone has noticed, the rays are doing just that…I thought this west coast trip will sink them,but other than that no hitter, didn’t they win the rest of the games

    • The Real Greg

      No they lost 2-3 to the M’s and have taken the first 2 against the Angels.

  • Mike

    Spring training lineup from the Yanks for the past two days…….spring training crowd……spring training intensity…….spring training results

  • Andy Pettitte’s Fibula

    Crazy story about Melky’s attempt to pull a Braun and weasel his way out of a positive steroid test. I also don’t believe for a second that his agents weren’t well aware of what was going on. He really should get a full year suspension, not 50 games.


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

      Braun didn’t “weasel” his way out of anything. MLB broke the rules.

      • Andy Pettitte’s Fibula (formerly Manny’s BanWagon)

        Bullshit he didn’t.

        There are only 2 possible scenarios, either he used Testosterone or the urine collector added synthetic testosterone to his sample.

        Anyone with any common sense can choose which one is far more likely.

    • Jose M. Vazquez

      If this is true, then we have not heard the last of this affair.

  • The Real Greg

    Holy shit, I just saw the Stanton homer. If I were the Rockies, I would consider trading Cargo and some prospects to the Marlins for him.

  • The Real Greg

    Next 12 games after this series

    Rays: Royals and A’s at home, Rangers and Blue Jays on the road
    Yankees: White Sox and Indians on the road, Blue Jays and Baltimore at home.

    Fairly similar schedules: 2 division leaders, 2 winning overachievers,
    2 doormats, and the Blue Jays