Yanks can’t overcome Orioles, Girardi in loss

Tampa ends their season with a shutout loss
Fan Confidence Poll: September 3rd, 2012

Source: FanGraphs

As nice as it was for the Yankees to squeak out a win on Saturday, the Orioles completely outclassed them again on Sunday afternoon. The Bombers looked pretty much exactly like they’ve looked for the last few weeks, meaning lackluster, overwhelmed, and without answers. Let’s recap the latest loss…

  • Late Fade: Phil Hughes threw the ball really, really well … until the wheels started to come off in the fifth. He surrendered the requisite solo homer to Mark Reynolds early on, but otherwise escaped a fifth inning jam unscathed. One run in five innings is fine, but Phil didn’t record an out after that. The first four hitters of the sixth reached base, capped off by a three-run dinger from Reynolds. Hughes struck out six and walked one in his 5+ innings, allowing five runs on eight hits. He looked great early on, but it all came apart in a hurry. The Yankees rearranged their rotation so Phil would start this game and he didn’t respond.
  • Disaster Bullpen: Middle relief has been a problem all season, and it forced Joe Girardi to pull off the rare five-pitcher inning in the eighth. Cody Eppley (one hit, one walk, four outs), Clay Rapada (struck out the only man he faced), Joba Chamberlain (walk, hit, one out), Justin Thomas (struck out the only man he faced), Derek Lowe (walk, hit, no outs), Boone Logan (allowed a hit to the only man he faced), and Cory Wade (retired all five men he faced) did the damage this time. Rapada, Thomas, and Wade get passes, and I’m willing to forgive Boone since he threw two innings on Saturday and the hit he allowed was just a ground ball through the hole. Either way, the relievers provided nothing resembling relief again.
  • Asleep at the Wheel: There were a ton of just weird managerial choices in this game, none as bad as leaving Hughes in to face Reynolds in the sixth. Six of the previous nine Orioles had reached base and a) the bullpen didn’t start warming up until Reynolds was on deck, and b) no one even bothered to visit the mound during the inning. How do you not even send Larry Rothschild out for a chat? After that, Eppley was allowed to face lefties Chris Davis and Nick Markakis despite three left-handers in the bullpen. Both reached base. Rapada was saved for Nate McLouth. Really. Girardi also didn’t bother to pinch-hit for Raul Ibanez or Ichiro Suzuki (three times each!) but he did for Chris Dickerson against Baltimore’s left-handers. Biggest game of the season (to date) and the manager had his worst. Brutal.
  • Leftovers: Dickerson was all of the offense, clubbing a two-run dinger to right and coming around to score on Nick Swisher‘s single following a leadoff walk to immediately answer Reynolds’ dinger in the fifth. He also made two great catches in center, the kind of stuff that gets players pinch-hit for, you know … the Yankees put the leadoff man on-base in the fifth, sixth, seventh, and ninth innings and managed just one run … other than Dickerson, the only hitter to reach base twice was Russell Martin (two walks). The top five hitters in the order went a combined 3-for-19 with a walk.

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights, ESPN the updated standings. The Orioles are two back in the division and the Rays are four back after wrecking the Blue Jays. The Yankees are now headed down to Tampa for three games, who will start Jamie Shields against CC Sabathia on Monday afternoon. It sounds like Alex Rodriguez will be in the lineup for the Labor Day matinee, and it would behoove the rest of the team to stop sucking as well.

Tampa ends their season with a shutout loss
Fan Confidence Poll: September 3rd, 2012
  • IPK for Tim Reddings (formerly Brian S.)


    • IPK for Tim Reddings (formerly Brian S.)

      :: dons flame suit ::

    • Mike

      Don’t forget:

      Buck > Joe

      • 123

        Green > Red

  • Kramerica Industries

    I’m stubbornly sticking to a 6-4 expectation for this ten game stretch of games.

    Just because the Yankees continue to look like shit is no reason for me to alter what I expect them to do. Just means I look like I expect way too much with a team that couldn’t hit its way out of a wet paper bag right now.

  • Cano fan #1

    Girardi should be fire

  • Cy Pettitte

    This was seriously the worst managed game I’ve ever seen, anyone watching saw Phil running out of gas in the 5th and shouldn’t have come out for the 6th. After he gave up the walk in the 6th there’s no excuse for leaving him in when everyone was available in the pen and leaving him in to face Reynolds was basically forfeiting the game. You have the 8th/9th taken care of with DRob and Soriano, so what, Girardi didn’t think Boone, Wade, Eppley, and Rapada couldn’t get 6 outs in the 6th and 7th and Phil had to go 6? that’s ridiculous. I have to hope there’s some kind explanation like Joe was suffering from post concussion symptoms of in some kind of dayquil induced haze and he didn’t actually make these decisions in a lucid state.

    Hopefully they can take 2/3 from the Rays and at least split the 4 game set with the O’s.

    • Kevin

      Girardi was an idiot but in his defense..over the past couple of weeks other than a game or two,the bullpen has shown that they CAN’T get outs.

      • Anthony

        Agreed. With Phil Hughes pitching I’m always on edge, but Kevin makes a good point. The middle relief has been pretty crappy as of late. Before that big 3-run bomb I thought it was the right decision to keep him in. On the other hand, you could make the argument that Girardi should have picked up on Hughes getting fatigued.

        • Rocky Road Redemption

          I’m with you and Kevin. The Reynolds HR was bad but before that point I would have left him in.

          • Anthony

            Yeah. Hughes was actually doing a pretty good job those first few innings. Things just went downhill in the 5th.

      • JohnnyC

        There is no defense for how Girardi managed today. None.

    • forensic

      He actually didn’t even want 6. He wanted 5 1/3. He said if it’s one out then it’s a different story on how he handles it.

      He also said he didn’t want to do it because then he’d have to mix and match and use too many pitchers in one inning. Good thing he side-stepped that landmine…

    • Reverse Mormon

      Of course if he takes him out and the pen gives up the 3 run blast you would be saying “why did he take him out? The bullpen sucks and he should have know this would happen.”

  • BigBlueAL

    Looking for any sort of positives heading into this week (its hard I know):

    CC starts twice this week (of course so does Garcia). Arod should be back tomorrow and Grandy only 2-3 more days out if that much. Maybe even Tex can play in Baltimore. Also the Yankees dont face David Price.

    Other than that I really dont have much else to give me any real hope that the Yankees will still be alone in 1st by the end of the week. At this point I will gladly take them going 3-4 this week. Hope they prove me wrong and go 5-2 this week though.

    • Anthony

      The way the Yanks have been hitting lately… I feel like not facing Price isn’t all that big a plus… sad but true. The offense right now is getting shut down by the likes of Miguel Gonzalez in the first game this series… not exactly a Cy Young contender as Price is…

    • 123

      Arod hasn’t played in awhile. Really don’t expect much out of him this week until he starts his rhythm.

  • Rocky Road Redemption

    Hey guys: Before we call for Joe’s head, can we finish the season first please? Or even be out of first place?

    He managed one hell of an awful game but I think we all need to take a big step back from the ledge and breeeeaaaaattttthhhe.

  • mark

    Girardi is a horrible manager…but, that hasn’t changed. He’s always been awful. Imagine the Yanks with Joe Madden.

    • forensic

      A lot of Maddon’s little playing around with the lineups and stuff wouldn’t fly well in a large market on a team with veterans, and he’s even admitted that himself. He wouldn’t be able to do a lot of the things that people praise him for there with all his low-priced/interchangeable players.

      • Kramerica Industries

        I remember an old local asshat here in Tampa, Dan Sileo, who talked about how the Yankees would win “120/130 games with Joe Maddon”.

        I never understood what that fat bastard was thinking, since he claimed to be a Yankee fan, of all people! I think he jumped ship around ’08, I never heard it, and was left in a lurch for the rest of the time he had a show.

        Not to detract from your point, however.

        • 123

          The manager really doesn’t have that much impact. Sure there are a few moves here and there where they may lose a game, but a good manager won’t win 25-35% more games over a average manager.

          • Ben

            Who ever chooses Madden’s in game managing over Girardi’s is nuts. You can’t rip Girardi and praise Madden in the same sentence. The guy once intentionally walked the winning run onto first while forcing in a run, Axisa’s head would have exploded. Also how many sac bunts do the rays give away???
            Did he do a great job with the rays? absolutely. but if you disagree with so called shit Girardi does Maddens wouldn’t fly with you either.

      • Reverse Mormon

        Agreed. That stuff is so overrated anyway. Maddon has the good fortunate of having an excellent rotation. The Rays are are a below average offensive team (11th in the AL in rusn scored)so whatever he is doing juggling hthe lineups isn’t working. Kind of like all the people who think Billy Beane is a genius because of the success of his moneyball A’s back in the early 2000s. He had Hudson, Mulder and Zito. That is the primary reason why those A’s teams were successful.

    • JohnnyC

      Or even Joe Maddon.

  • Need Pitching & Hitting

    Yankees last 14 games: 5-9 record, 18-101 wRISP (.178), averaging 3.21 runs/game

    The last extended RISP slump came in May/June and lasted about 50 games.

    Hopefully this one doesn’t last as long.

    • forensic

      They can barely hit right now without RISP, so I can’t even get overly concerned about that.

      Unfortunately, with the guys making up the lineup it’s not like it’s even just a little slump that will turn around or something (outside of Cano and arguably Granderson when he was playing). That still leaves 5 spots occupied by older players and part-time/AAA players who may just be too fatigued, flatout bad, or way over-exposed. Not to mention that their manager fails to put them in a position to succeed by leaving half of them in there against pitchers they are very unlikely to hit.

      Sadly, many of those things won’t change. A-Rod will come back (I think possibly rushed and too early, especially after two apparently bad rehab games) but he has struggled for extended periods after long injury breaks. Tex will be back but that won’t be for another week or so and these nagging injuries seem to be showing up more and more for him, especially at the end of the season. There’s also the matter of having two swings to get right after having not swung for maybe two weeks.

      Jeter’s not the kind of guy who can carry an offense, especially from the leadoff spot and Swisher has dropped into a bit of a slump the last week or so.

      Just a look at the lineups screams trouble. Jones batting cleanup? Pearch batting cleanup?!? Nix DH’ing?

      I hope I’m vastly wrong, but right now I can’t be optimistic about this offense with only a month left in the season.

      Sorry to hijack your post with my rant, but I couldn’t stop myself after starting.

      • forensic

        Obviously Pearce, not Pearch…

      • Need Pitching & Hitting

        The current lack of quality depth in the lineup is definitely an issue, but it doesn’t explain being this bad. Nobody in the lineup is a true talent .178 hitter (though Jones and Martin may be close). Virtually everybody in the lineup is in a slump, even accounting for modest expectations for the injury fill-ins. Cano is 3 for his last 21(.143), Jeter 4-28 (.143), Ibanez 2-32 (.063), Swisher 4-24 (.143), Chavez 7-34 (.206), Jones 1-18 (.056), Stewart 1-11 (.091), Ichiro 4-20 (.200). There is no reason any or all of those hitters can’t or shouldn’t improve upon their recent performance. There is plenty of room for improvement from even the current cast of misfits, and perhaps more if others (Dickerson, Nunez) are allowed to actually play in place of some of the non-contributors.

        • Rocky Road Redemption

          Nice post, my man.

  • IPK for Tim Reddings (formerly Brian S.)

    Dewayne Wise is already fourth on the White Sox in WPA. Ichiro is already second to last on our team in WPA.


  • River Ave Bipolar Disorder

    So three different relievers shit the bed, Gardner-Granderson-Teixeira-Rodriguez are injured, and…GIRARDI CAN’T MANAGE!

    Yes. It’s all his fault that professional hitters don’t hit, and professional pitchers can’t get an out when they need one.

    But better call up Montgomery and Mustelier just in case.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting

      Not all his fault, but it is his job to put players with limited abilities in the best possible position to succeed. That would entail not letting platoon LH batters bat 3 times each against LHP, or not allowing a ROOGY to face two LH hitters when there are still 3 lefties in the bullpen, or not use mop up men (see Lowe, Derek and Chamberlain, Joba) in a close game except as an absolute last resort.

      • Anthony

        Michael Kay mentioning how Ibanez is in a pretty major slump right now… no doubt his batting against LHP is contributing to that. Raul must have really pissed Joey G off… there’s really no other explanation for how many times he’s had to face LHP..

  • Big Members Only (formerly RI$P FTW)

    Someone has a hard on for Girardi.

    • forensic

      Greg’s here?

  • Deep Thoughts

    So who you do DFA first, Lowe or Jones?

    I vote Lowe, by a fraction.

    • forensic

      I have to vote Jones. Lowe’s appearances don’t necessarily lead to more Jones appearances, but if they replace Jones with someone who might actually get a hit once in a while and it puts the offense in a better position, maybe Girardi won’t be so tempted (or at least easily excused from) to use Lowe. Therefore, maybe you kill two birds with one stone.

      Sadly, we know what the team will do in this situation…

  • hornblower

    Silly reactions to a tough loss. Right now the Yanks have one of the worst lineups in the bigs. You can put a uniform on a someone but that doesn’t make him a player. Jeter left men on base all day. That is not Gerardi’s fault. If you can’t score, you can’t win. Mgr. talk is just talk show nonsense.

    • forensic

      No, the manager can’t control what happens when a player in on the field. But, the main job of a manager is to put his players in a position to succeed. Letting lefty platoon bats face lefties and righty platoon bats face righties isn’t doing that. Letting LOOGY’s face righties and ROOGY’s face lefties isn’t doing that.

      And that doesn’t even touch his other decisions of when to ignore pitching changes or go overboard on them and where he’s placing batters in the lineup.

      • Ben

        If something, Girardi gets killed for his constant bulpen changes…. it’s lose lose for him sometimes with all the managers.. um i mean fans on this board. If something he has been an extremist in setting up platoon advantages for his players, you can not kill him over one game, as awful as it might have been.

  • Dan in Athens

    So if Girardi pulls Hughes after the first or second baserunners of gthe fifth, doesn’t this bullpen still give up several runs? The offense put up a 3 spot and didn’t execute again. Hanging an 8-3 loss on the manager doesn’t make much sense.

    Yankees are playing without a lot of guys and not surprisingly it is showing.

  • Rich in NJ

    At this point, there are no good answers other than getting healthy and then hoping that some wins breed confidence.

    But no matter how this season plays out, ownership may need to consider if the current people are making the most out of the available assets in terms of trades, free agent signings, and mL development.

    The same people have run this team for a long time. At some point, new people, especially those who have had success with a smaller payroll, may be worth considering.

    • Kempire Strikes Back

      Hmmmmm, interesting proposition. Although I like Cashman’s overall body of work, he’s made some glaring mistakes. I don’t see the Yankees’ front office rushing him out the door unless something catastrophic (among their impossibly high standards) happens.

      Randy Levine on the other hand? Well he can leave any time he likes.

  • Tom

    Chris Tillman for his career
    Lefties: .781 OPS, 4.39 FIP, 6.9K/9
    Righties: .835 OPS, 5.83 FIP, 5.2 K/9
    (the splits I think are more pronounced this year)

    What kind of hitters would you put in the lineup? Well clearly you have to find out what hand he throws with as that is really the only thing that matters.

    Is it so hard to look up the splits? (2nd game this series Girardi missed this) For a guy who supposedly uses stats, Girardi has some ridiculous blind spots when it comes to platooning. It will be interesting to see the lineup he puts out against Matt Moore

    I know I sound like a broken record but this robotic lefty = righty lineup and righty = lefty lineup is absurd without looking at the actual performance #’s, pitch mix and the strengths/weaknesses of your hitters.

    Thankfully Tex and Arod will put an end to some of this and give Girardi fewer chances to mess up the platoon decisions. This will also hopefully have a cascading effect as with more platoon bats on the bench Girradi shouldn’t need to “save” the bat for a late in the game situation that may never come and stop giving away AB’s or even innings in the middle of the game.

    • Tom

      By the way it was the same thing with Hughes… if Reynolds was lefty is Girardi calling for the LOOGY in that spot? I’m obviously just speculating but I would not be surprised if Girardi was thinking keep him in to get the righties and when a lefty comes up then go specialist

      Hughes vs lefties: .593
      Hughes vs righties: .969 (yes the average righty against Hughes this year hits like Miguel Cabrera)

      Some of it may be a bit of a sample size issue, but a split that massive is probably more than just that.

      In a high leverage situation the time to get Hughes out of the game is against a righty, not a lefty. The specialist you want warming when Phil gets in trouble should be right handed. My guess is Girardi is thinking the exact opposite because Phil happens to be right handed so clearly you want to take him out when a lefty comes up.

  • dkidd

    of all the things going wrong right now, the bullpen worries me the most. hard to imagine a serious post-season run unless something dramatic happens (joba stops sucking, aardsma saves the day etc)

    I know starters >>> relievers, but right now i want phelps in the bullpen

  • Rocky Road Redemption

    Seriously though Mike-Snap out of it! I mean, in the other thread you said the Ichiro trade was “pointless”. Judging in hindsight, much? You sure seemed to like it at the time, and in this thread:


    you referred to him as an upgrade on the fifth of situation-not a big move, yes, but it was an upgrade.

    And then when we mentioned that the Rays had two good hitters you said “One more than the Yankees”. I mean, really? Jeter, Swisher, Cano-all better. There. Three. Plus we might have A-Rod playing.

    Sorry Mike, you’re doing a great job and you run a terrific blog but you need to take a deep breath just like everybody else, because you’re starting to sound like a ledge-jumper, and we’re two games UP in the division, not down.

    • http://riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      I’ve had a shitty week and the Yankees aren’t exactly making me feel any better. I was wrong about Ichiro though, he’s played way more than I expected (partly due to injuries) and sucked pretty bad.

      • Jose M. Vazquez

        Unfortunately, I too thought that Ichiro would help, but I was wrong. He no longer has the legs and can only serve as a defensive replacement. We are caught in a trap with an old team trying to do what it used to do years ago. Win or loose, we have to get younger. Did I say this beore?

      • Rocky Road Redemption

        Late now, but understandable. Still, I think EVERYBODY needs to chill now about the Yanks. Let’s at least wait until they lose first place.

  • Rob

    Girardi is awful! He stood by and let his pitcher get racked without even sending out his pitching coach to stall for the bp to get ready. It was almost like he didn’t care if they won or not. The team needs to wake up or we’re going to have a lot of time to watch the Giants this October

  • DT

    If losing the division/ no making the play offs means they finally can ire Girardi…you know what I’ll call it a consolation prize. Getting rid of this guy would benefit the team much more in long run. It’s been 4 years and he does the same shit over and over, and for 4 years it’s proven to be more detrimental to the team.

    • Mike

      I’d replace Girardi with Francona in a heartbeat

      • TomH

        Francona might well pull a Cliff Lee type that-team’s-too-old refusal.

      • Jose M. Vazquez

        Cashman put too much faith in old “has been” players. Definitely Jones, Martin, Ichiro, Lowe are done. Old George Weiss brought in veterans (but only one or two ) toward the end of the season. As I said, too many past their prime players. The other teams in the division have slowly but surely gotten younger and better while we have been going the other way.

  • Frank

    I don’t see this team in first place a week from today the way they are playing. The RS crashed and burned; Yanks may not be far behind.

  • Christopher

    They can win this division and they can beat the Orioles. They had a crappy weekend, and a crappy stretch. Baseball seasons tend to even out over time – it’s part of the beauty of the season, the 162 games, the averages, the numbers all you nerds crunch endlessly. Here’s a number to look at – how many teams actually win a baseball season by 10+ games?

    I’d like to say this, though – Showalter is one hell of a manager – as long as the players are young and the organization bends to his will. I can’t imagine that guy managing the Angels or the Rangers or the Yankees, or the Sox, White or Red.

  • Burn Girardi’s Binder

    Girardi really needs to get his freaking act together. This entire series he managed like a complete assclown and he has had 0 tact for turning this team around since the 4 game sweep in Oakland in late July. The team has never responded since.

    Also, as a frame of reference, Robin Ventura had DeWayne Wise hit 3rd (!) last night because he didn’t want to shuffle around the rest of his lineup…hint hint Joe. His tinkering is doing us no good and the team is suffering because of it.

    With Alex back tonight, the lineup SHOULD (but not necessarily will) look like this:

    Jeter SS
    Swisher RF
    ARod DH
    Cano 2B
    Chavez 3B
    Jones/Ibanez LF
    Dickerson CF
    Martin C
    Ichiro RF

    Good luck hitting the actually very hittable Big Game James tonight. This team was manhandled by Miguel Gonzalez and Randy Wolf this week. What a nightmare.