Oct
12

Offense a no-show as Orioles force Game Five

By

For the first time in baseball history, all four LDS matchups will go the full five games. Unfortunately that means the Yankees lost Game Four to the Orioles on Thursday night, a 2-1 game that featured an awful lot of offensive failures on both sides.

(Al Bello/Getty)

St. Philip of Hughes

Pitching in his first game action in nearly two weeks, Phil Hughes put up a light version of Hiroki Kuroda‘s Game Three outing but dancing around danger early before settling down to put up a representative start. He walked the leadoff man in three of the first four innings but pitched out of the jam each time — first and second with no outs in the first, second and third with no outs in the second, first and third with two outs in the third. Phil’s only mistake was a solo homer to Babe McLouth leading off the fifth.

All told, Hughes threw 95 pitches in 6.2 innings of one-run ball. He retired nine of the final ten batters he faced after the homer and allowed just four hits overall. He also walked those three leadoff men. The Orioles swing and missed 15 times as part of eight strikeouts, a strong number for Hughes after struggling to miss bats a bit in September. This start was awfully reminiscent of Game Three of the 2010 ALDS, when Phil scuffled in the second half but came out and held the Twins in check. Unfortunately the offense did not support him like they did that night.

Set Up To Fail

(Alex Trautwig/Getty)

Joe Girardi made the gutsiest call of his managerial career in Game Three on Wednesday, lifting Alex Rodriguez for pinch-hitter Raul Ibanez in the ninth inning of a one-run game. It was the right call and not just because it worked out — A-Rod has been abysmal against right-handed pitchers lately and he simply did not give the team the best chance to win in that spot. Instead of following the same script in Game Four, Girardi left Alex in the game to face righties with the go-ahead run in scoring position on not one, but two occasions.

Now just to be fair, A-Rod did reach base in his first two at-bats. He drew a leadoff walk against Joe Saunders in the second inning, but his teammates failed to advanced him any further. He also singled with one out in the fourth only to be erased on a double play. That came off Saunders as well, a left-hander. The situation changed in the sixth, after Robinson Cano tied the game with an RBI ground out. Mark Teixeira was on second base with two outs and rather than leave Saunders in to face Alex a third time, Buck Showalter lifted him for hard-throwing righty Tommy Hunter. Five pitches later, the inning was over after A-Rod swung through a fastball for strike three.

Fast forward to the eighth, when the Yankees blew their biggest opportunity to take the lead. Ichiro Suzuki and Teixeira singled to open the inning, putting men on first and second with no outs. Cano advanced the runners to second and third with a ground out, which wasn’t exactly ideal but better than nothing I suppose. Robbie’s ALDS disappearing act is something we can discuss at another time. So now the go-ahead run is on third base (and an insurance run is on second) with one out. Showalter lifted the lefty Brian Matusz for the side-winding righty Darren O’Day, who has crushed same-side hitters for years. He struck out A-Rod on four pitches with three swings and misses. Nick Swisher flew out to end the inning.

Ibanez, the Game Three mega-hero, was not used in the game until there were two outs in the bottom of the ninth. The score was tied and no one was on-base. It was homer of bust, basically, and Ibanez grounded out to end the inning before being replaced by Eduardo Nunez defensively the next inning. No one is expecting him to hit pinch-hit homer every game, no one reasonable anyway, but it’s very clear that Ibanez is one of the team’s more productive hitters at the moment. Girardi opted to let A-Rod bat in two situations in which he had so little chance of succeeding — he’s 0-for-12 with nine strikeouts against righties in the series — and his faith was not rewarded. The team’s hottest and most dangerous hitter was given one at-bat with no one on-base. With that many underperforming hitters in the lineup, they were destined to fail.

If Joba didn’t have bad luck, he’d have none at all. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

All Hail The Bullpen

The Orioles have scored exactly one run after the seventh inning in this series, and that was the game-winning run in the 13th inning in Game Four. J.J. Hardy doubled in Manny Machado to win the game. The bullpen, and really the entire pitching staff in general, was not at fault for the loss however. After Hughes went the first 6.2 innings, a total of seven relievers combined to allow four base-runners and one run in 6.1 runs. Two runs and 12 strikeouts in 13 innings, and that wasn’t good enough for a win. Think about that.

Anyway, Boone Logan was first in line and he retired McLouth with a soft liner to second to end the seventh. David Robertson dazzled in an eight-pitch eighth inning, then Rafael Soriano chipped in scoreless ninth and tenth innings. Joba Chamberlain threw a perfect 11th and started the 12th, but a Matt Wieters’ broken bat hit him in the elbow and forced him from the game. X-rays were negative and he’ll be re-evaluated tomorrow. David Phelps took over and escaped the inning before giving up the run in the 13th. Clay Rapada and Derek Lowe got the final two outs without incident. The pitching staff has allowed nine runs in 42 innings this series. Nine runs in 42 innings. That’s a 1.93 ERA, and it wasn’t good enough to avoid a decisive Game Five.

Leftovers

(AP Photo/Kathy Willens)

We’ve already talked about A-Rod, but let’s count all the other ways the offense failed. Derek Jeter went 2-for-6 and scored the only run, and he has multiple hits in all four games of the series. He also struck out looking on a Luis Ayala fastball with two men on to end the seventh. Ichiro went 1-for-5 with a sacrifice bunt and Teixeira reached base four times in his six plate appearances (single and three walks). The quartet of Cano, Swisher, Curtis Granderson, and Russell Martin went a combined 0-for-20 with one walk (Martin) and four strikeouts (three by Curtis). The Yankees went 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position on the night with Jeter, A-Rod, and Cano taking 0-for-2s in those spots.

Jayson Nix played shortstop while Jeter nursed the bone bruise on his left foot, making him the first player to start at the position other than the Cap’n since (who else?) Tony Fernandez in Game Five of the 1995 ALDS. Nix was actually the team’s most productive offensive player in the game, going 2-for-3 with a double. He was replaced by Ibanez in the ninth.

Fieldin Culbreth’s strike zone was a disaster, which I guess isn’t a surprise. It was bad for both teams but I don’t want to blame it for anything, I’m just making an observation. It’s made even more noticeable and annoying by the little permanent strike zone sidebar on the TBS broadcast.

Box Score & WPA Graph

MLB.com has the box score and video highlights. Outside of the final six outs of Game One, these two teams have never been separated by more than one run in the series.


Source: FanGraphs

Up Next

Either the Yankees or the Orioles are going home tomorrow when they play Game Five. The winner will advance to play the Tigers in the ALCS, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. CC Sabathia and Jason Hammel will square off in a Game One rematch at 5:07pm ET. Yes, a 5:07pm ET start on a Friday. That’s actually a thing that will happen.

Categories : Game Stories, Playoffs

111 Comments»

  1. eric k says:

    I’ve seen this movie before….

  2. DT says:

    So when does Grandy, Swisher and Cano get chewed out by the Media along with Arod? Maybe one of the 4 useless guys will show up tomorrow.

    • forensic says:

      It’s amazing that in this series, they are sending out there 4 straight (or at least 4 out of 5) offensive players with OPS’s in the .300′s or lower. OPS!!!

      Granderson is at .181!!! I don’t even know how you do that without trying?

      A-Rod: .347
      Swisher: .355
      Cano: .380

      I almost expected them to lose the series because of their offense, but this is even beyond anything I could’ve imagined.

    • CT Yankee says:

      It’s a shame that this string of incredible pitching has been negated by this absolute failure of a line-up. I also disagree 100% with having Ichiro bunt after Jeter’s lead-off double. That’s a wasted out. But Girardi is not to blame. They had 38 other outs and managed just 1 run. Has to be the worst performance ever.

    • ARod, King of Choke says:

      Grandy gets a partial pass b/c this dismal display is something new as a Yankee. Swisher’s playoff woes are unforgivable, but no one ever accused him of being a star. Cano carried the team to the playoffs, so it’s hard to get on him.

      A-Rod has been pulling his disappearing act for years. I’m willing to bet he’s around .220/.320 with RISP in the playoffs as a Yankee. He’s the ultimate goat. In over 25 years of watching Yankee all-stars I have never seen a star consistently wilt under pressure like A-Rod. He deserves to be run out of town.

      • Conor says:

        At age 37 and still recovering from a hand injury, Rodriguez is not a star. Even when he’s healthy he’s a slightly above average player. Cashman probably should plan for him being a very good utility player over the next few years. But I would think that several game winning home runs in an awesome playoff run to lead the team to a World Championship would end the “consistently wilt under pressure” criticisms. No way we win in 2009 without him. Rodriguez wouldn’t get so much criticism if other hitters carried him when he had a bad series in the same way that he carried the 2009 team.

  3. Rich in NJ says:

    I just heard a WFAN update with some audio of Swisher saying that tomorrow, they “would be ready to go.” I’m not sure why the media bothers to talk to him, but the only place he should be ready to go is to the bench.

  4. Dino says:

    Girardi has to sit A-Rod and Granderson tomorrow. Alex has no chance against righties and Curtis has no chance against anybody.

    • DT says:

      Sit Swisher and Cano while we’re at it.

      • MannyGeee says:

        Bat Ichiro, Martin, Jeter & Nix in a rotation…. over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.

        if you’re gonna bench everyone that’s not hitting, no one would hit

  5. Buhner's barber says:

    I think I would honestly rather get waterboarded than watch the Yankees offense get shut down by the likes of Joe Saunders, Wei-yen Chen, Miguel Gonzalez, and Jason Hammel.

  6. RetroRob says:

    Either both of these teams have the greatest pitching going ever, or neither are prepared to advance to the next round.

    All the media focus can remain on A-Rod, but the fact is pretty much the entire lineup has been MIA, with a couple exceptions. Time for Cano to step up.

  7. RetroRob says:

    BTW The fact that for the first time ever all five LDS matchups are going the full five games means that it is almost certain that the 2-3 format will remain.

  8. BigBlueAL says:

    Sad part is even w/o Mo this is the best pitching staff the Yankees have had in the playoffs since 2003 (Id say better than 2009 because they have 4 good SP). They have allowed 9 freaking runs in 4 games and are tied 2-2. Its insane.

    Also at the end of the A’s game the fans gave them a standing ovation and the players came out of the dugout and waved to the fans. Safe to say that wont happen tomorrow if the Yankees lose Game 5 lol.

    • Derek says:

      Just goes to show how pathetic the offense has been. You’re probably, well definitely, right about this being the best staff the team has had since 2003. Under normal circumstances this series would have been over after three games given the pitching.

    • Rich in NJ says:

      Which is why the idea that pitching wins is false.

      • Need Pitching & Hitting says:

        Are the Orioles winning with their hitting?

      • dalelama says:

        That is a really stupid statement.

        • Cris Pengiucci says:

          Not entirely. You could argue that neither team seems capable of winning due to their inept offenses. Without an offense that can produce (like the Yankees have now), wht good is great pitching? 1 run in 13 innings? You’ve got to be kidding me. And if you take away the 5 runs in the 9th of game 1 (and Ibanez in game 3), the offense has been horrible.

    • Goyanks5202 says:

      And don’t forget it’s not only 4 games they’ve only allowed 9 runs in 4 games + 7 more innings. I think this is the best pitching I’ve seen in over a decade from the Bombers in the playoffs. I would really love to just show up and win this game 5 7-2 so I can maybe not be full of grey hair by the end of this series.

  9. forensic says:

    It’s not really there, but its almost at the point where it’s easier if they lose tomorrow and put the offense, and us, out of its misery rather than having to deal with more games of Comerica with Scherzer, Fister, and Verlander again.

    It’s sad that they’ve even pushed me to the point of thinking about this, similar to what they did at the end of the regular season where I thought about if it’d be better to miss the playoffs if it might lead to some leadership changes (though that was apparently more wishful thinking than potential reality).

    • Chris says:

      Well, I hope you’re wrong about that sir. I really do.

    • Cris Pengiucci says:

      I have the same feelings as you. Is it time for them to revamp this team by getting into the off season as quickly as possible? Would the consider not picking up Granderson’s option?

      This series is extremely frustrating to say the least.

      • DF says:

        Would you want them making personnel decisions based on 5 games? I really hope that’s frustration talking, because that’s a bad idea. Really bad.

        Not picking up Granderson’s option might be the right way to go. He was close to useless for large portions of this season. He’s a pretty flawed hitter. But that assessment should be be made based on as large a sample as possible, not because he looked (admittedly) terrible for 5 games.

        • Cris Pengiucci says:

          I’m not advocating making a decision based on this series. However, as you’ve pointed out, Granderson’s flaws are showing. He’s more than usefull in CF, but his strikeout rate is bad. Will he be worth his option price next year? Quite possibly, but if he doesn’t show up in the playoffs after the regular season (provided they make it next year), and he’s surely gone. Would it be better to use his money elsewhere? What about swisher? Does his regular season production outway his playoff failures? Should the Yankees consider keeping him over Granderson? Tough questions that I’m sure the front office is pondering.

  10. NYCSPORTZFAN says:

    I honestly didn’t think there was a decison to be made when Giardi kept AROD in the game to face O’day.. I thought 100pct Ibanez would be in there, and when i seen Arod in the On deck circle, i dang near had to pick my jaw up off the floor.. It stinks that our manager is even capable of makin such a poor choice.. Its amazing a guy who makes that much money to simply play the best chance to score and win games , found it ok to hit AROD in that situation with ibanez available and chavez on the bench to go to 3rd… WOW!

    • BigBlueAL says:

      Girardi said after the game he figured Ibanez would be IBB and setup the double play. He figured Arod up with the infield in was a better chance of scoring a run than Swisher with the bases loaded with a double play ending the inning a possibility.

    • Need Pitching & Hitting says:

      PH Ibanez there would have been a waste. He would have been IBB’d and then taken out of the game. He should have PH Chavez though. Still probably IBB, but certainly better than a K.

  11. ANSKY says:

    I remember Torre platooned Boggs and Charlie Hayes and also Tino and Cecil Fielder in the playoffs. So why can’t Arod be PH for in late game situations? I mean seriously, aside from 2009, what’s he done in the playoffs to make him so untouchable? He’s not Reggie Jackson.

  12. stuart a says:

    i know arod sucks but why not some grief for Swisher, or granderson who is helpless etc..

    the problem is they have no replacement for grandy right now, with gardner coming back from the injury etc….

    their offense is even worse then my worst nightmares..

    they are so horrible it is staggering, the pitching has been great.. there playoff pitching has been bad for years. 4 good starts, pen has been great, etc…

    • Need Pitching & Hitting says:

      They do have a replacement for Granderson.
      GARDNER.

      Even coming back from injury, he can’t possibly hit worse then Granderson has, and he adds better defense.

      • FIPster Doofus says:

        And speed. He needs to play tomorrow. Granderson is lost right now; he’s no more useful offensively than your average RAB poster would be.

        • ArchStanton says:

          Exactly! At least Gardner might tap out an infield single or something. Granderson is doing nothing.

          • Gerald Williams' Hairline says:

            Gardner can get a bunt down as well…. Gardner is superior to Granderson in CF. Joe just hates white guys…

  13. BENICIO DEL TORO says:

    FUCK NATE McLOUTH

    that is all…

  14. stuart a says:

    2 extra base hits in 13 innings for the bombers..

    2 doubles… swisher, arod, grandy, tex(he does not get off the hook), ichiro, etc.. no power, no hard hit balls etc..

    jeez……

    • DT says:

      How does having a near .500 OBP not get you off the hook? He got on base 3 times this game, and had the game tying hit in game one. The worst you can say is that he didn’t come through ONE time with RISP so far.

  15. Andrew says:

    Bad time for Cano to go cold. Granderson and Swisher are facing quality pitching and they are coming up short every time. It’s bad news when it’s a victory if they don’t strike out. Swisher has 120 mill dancing in his head. A-Rod? Even when he was good he folded in the playoffs. It looks like he stabs at the ball. How many more years of misery is left on that contract? If he isn’t done yet he’s definitely at the medium rare stage. I hope Girardi puts Ibanez and Chavez in the starting lineup. Don’t think that playing Swish and Grandy will help them break out of their slumps. It’s all on C.C’s shoulders, he’ll need a big outing. Start Gardner and Nix.

  16. tipsie says:

    Buck would have walked Ibanez in the 8th, to be sure. The better move, then, would have been to PH Chavez there (who has not been as hot as Ibanez). He PH Chavez for ARod later in the game anyway, so why not then?

    • BigBlueAL says:

      Yup, and if they did walk Chavez and Swisher pops up like he did w/o scoring a run you couldve then pinch-hit Ibanez for Martin.

      Still though Giardi had a point, I mean the infield was freaking in all Arod had to do with hit a freaking blooper or a well-place cheap grounder and gotten most likely both runs in. Cant necessarily blame Girardi for thinking that way.

      • Fin says:

        Ya you can. I was sitting in my living room, thinking that arod wouldnt even foul a pitch off, he would go down swinging without making any contact. I’m sure I wasnt alone in thinking that, that includes Girardi. He just didnt have that confidence that PH’ing for Arod in that spot would work out like it did last night. Therefore, he chose not to do it to Arod two nights in a row.

  17. Just too disappointed right now says:

    And people thought that the offense was gonna catch fire because of what happened against the red sox…

    • Fin says:

      So tomorrow the lineup has to be:

      Jeter
      Ichiro
      Tex
      Cano
      Ibanez
      Swisher
      Chavez
      Martin
      Gardner

      Right? Right? It wont happen, and I have no idea how capable Gardner is to hit, health wise. HOwever, besides for swapping out Granderson for Gardner, its hard to see an argument for another lineup to start the game. I know Arod will be starting over CHavez, as just pinch hitting for him was a monumental task, let alone sitting him in a game 5.

  18. Fin says:

    How bout this lineup:

    Ichiro
    Tex
    Jeter
    Ibanez
    Swish
    Cano
    Martin
    Chavez
    Granderson

    Get the 4 guys who can do something up, and if the back of the lineup does something…great. LOL, I know it wont happen outside of Tampa but it would be something to see.

    • Cris Pengiucci says:

      We all know this won’t happen as it’s too dramatic of a change. However, the biggest flaw is having the slow-running Tex batting in front of Jeter, the ground ball machine. While Jeter has been the best hitter on the team (not including the limited at bats Ibanez has taken), I’d never have him batting behind a runner that can’t move. More double plays than we can count!

  19. Kosmo says:

    just a few ideas-if Jeter has to DH tonight then Nix will probably get the start at SS. If Jeter is DHing then Ibanez gets the start in LF with probably Ichiro moving over to RF and Swisher sitting. If Jeter plays at SS then of course Ibanez is the DH. I would be inclined to give Gardner the start in LF moving Ichiro to RF sitting Swisher. I would start Chavez at 3B sitting A-Rod. As much as I dislike Granderson the ballplayer I have the feeling he´s got a jimmy jack in him tonight.

    • Fin says:

      Have to figure that Jeter was running fine and will playing SS tomorrow, leaving the DH spot for Ibanez. There is no real replacement for Grandy so he will be playing CF. No one on this board is qualified to even bring Gardner into play as we have no idea what his capabilities are with his health. They havent even brought him in to pinch run yet. Nix was really good tonight but there is a right hander on the mound tomorrow so he wont play. I think everyone wants to see Chavez at third to start the game tomorrow but I think we can all agree that the odds of that are slim to none.

  20. Wil Nieves Number 1 Fan says:

    Nice to see this powerhouse team get diddled by mighty Joe Saunders. This could probably be on the list of my top ten least favorite Yankee game. Sadly, tomorrow will be twice as painful.

    • Fin says:

      This Yankee team has been my least favorite to watch since the loosing days of the 80s and early 90s. Its just been a very frustrating team. They leave men on base every inning and hit alot of solo homers. Every game is close, even when there is no reason for a game to be close. Its been a waste of, what is, a very good pitching staff when healthy.

      I have to say though, some of this offensive ineptitude, for both teams, maybe because of the umps. I cant see how any one can know what a strike is, except everything is a strike as the zones have been friken huge. It seems the low pitch just below the knees is a strike, the high pitch above the letters is a strike and 2 inches outside or inside off the plate is a 50/50 strike.

      • Warfield42 says:

        Fin, in every sport today the umpires/referees have altered the integrity of their respective games to give the fans more offense (or so the rumor is). Give Babe Ruth a strike zone like today’s (that is generally much smaller than this playoff zone, absolutely nothing called above the belt), armor-all to wear so no fear of getting plunked, pitcher’s that fear coming inside or getting tossed (aka – no chin music), a lowered mound, and today’s information & workout knowledge – he’d have hit 1,000 HR’s.
        Every ump has his own zone (regodamndiculous).
        Watch the NBA lately? Thats barely even basketball anymore.
        The NFL? What constitutes a hold or pass interference & who washes the QB’s dresses?
        For shame…..

        • Fin says:

          I didnt really mean to start a debate about umping or refs in general, just making an observation about this specific series as opposed to what is generally called a strike in MLB.

          But to answer what you have written…I dont watch the NBA any more because of the refing and my love of the NFL has greatly diminished because of the reffing. In regards to the NFL is not the way they protect the QB’s, they had to. QB’s were getting destroyed and none of them were lasting through the season. Its really pass interference thats ruining the NFL. If a ball goes up in the air and there is good coverage, the odds are there will be a call. The scoring in the NFL is completely dependant on judgment calls from the refs, and its hard to keep watching it.

          PS…to be honest I wasnt surprised at all when the NBA ref was on the take. I think there were alot more of them involved but it was covered up…That sport is unwatchable because of the refs.

          I think MLB refs have the easiest job of them all and still are the worst. However, the fact remains that baseball is the least effected by refs. There are very few judgement calls except balls and strikes. Either a guy is safe or he is out, a guy caught the ball or he did not. Though balls and strikes are a judgement call, they usually are so unpredictable that it rarely affects one team more than another. It maybe noticed in a crucial situation but, for the most I see balls and strikes being pretty much a neutral outcome at the end of the day.

          At the end of the day, I can see a time when I only watch MLB because the refs have the least outcome, day in and day out, on how the game is played and who wins and loses of all sports. Once they finally implement instant replay the only guy ump on the field who will have any impact on the game will be the guy calling strikes and balls.

  21. Warfield42 says:

    This current group may have set a futility record for RISPFAIL this year. They’ve STUNK all year w/runners in scoring position. This is nothing ‘new’. A-batross, UnGranderson & S-misser all are horrendous post season historically. I haven’t disliked a Yankee more than Pay-Rod since Roger Clemen’s pin cushion azz. They are an embarressment to pinstripes. Never been a Girardi fan, regardless if he pulled a rabbit out his (hat?) Wed. night.
    All that said, I may not like the constitution of this current team but I do think they have back against the wall panache & will find a way tonight. Not lookin’ forward to 5 more years of A-batross, or a re-signing of the UNGranderson (he has a bigger hole than Soriano ever thought of) – I can’t understand why anybody throws that guy a strike, EVER. Over the plate, in the dirt – he’s flailing & FAILING.

  22. JonS says:

    @keithlaw: Buck could take the night off and still say he outmanaged Girardi.

    • Monterowasnotdinero says:

      Girardi is an average manager at best. We all know that. The team could not win for him in an emotional night. Why doesn’t Pena whisper some suggestions in his ear? Don’t want him to be our next manager when Joe’s contract ends.

      We are getting beat with hits by Machado and Flaherty. 8 and 9 hitters yet somehow we can’t play Nunez or Gardy to replace our pitiful HR hitters.

      I am worried that CC will not have good control tonight and give up 3 runs early. happened before. Hope I’m wrong.

  23. Monterowasnotdinero says:

    Melky Mesa on the roster next year looking better and better. Cheap, can fly, occasionally touches the bases, and has a cannon arm.

    Spend $wisher money on pitching.

    If there is such a thing as a AAAA player than Swish is a regular season player only. The sample size is big enough now for me.

    Does anyone really think giving him 3 years will make him a better post season player? This is his contract year folks. Ain’t happening.

  24. Monterowasnotdinero says:

    2 road teams win game 5′s yesterday….

  25. LarryM., Fl. says:

    I read all the comments this AM. To see If you guys were as angry as me. I saw the same inability to play basic baseball on the offensive side of the game. I sensed a loss when Joba was injured. Not because Phelps was called in to pitch. I like the kid and he has improved with each appearance. But I felt he may not respond to the warmup especially in front of 50,000 fans in the respect to being properly warmed up. But he did well. He gave the Yanks a shot but we know the end story.

    While watching this lack of baseball ability and fundamentals of the game. It struck me that Swisher should not be given more than the qualifying offer. In hopes of his contract being written by a different team. Granderson traded in the off season. Cano is not worth 6 years at 20-30 million. If he can’t do it year after year in the playoffs in his prime then we should move on without him.

    My anger has some reasonableness but I’m sure Cashman will overpay Cano so we can watch him mosey on down to first or get high fives for 2 ground outs to the second baseman for moving up the runners.

    Lets hope for a normal game of 9 innings and Arod watching from the bench.

  26. Mick taylor says:

    Last year I wanted Carlos Beltran to replace swisher for the next 2 years instead cashman keeps that clown swisher I truly believe thathad dickerson replaced swisher in this playoff he would have done better

  27. Effthisnoise says:

    Watching the end of the game, the one thing i noticed was how unexcited the O’s looked to have just forced a game five. I saw the same thing when the Phillies won game 5 in 09. Like they knew they were just delaying the inevitable. Yanks will win tonight and i really dont think it will be close. But, the same problems will still be there against Detroit and beyond. Yanks have overcome a ton of obsticles this year, just hope the tank isnt completely empty.

  28. Bavarian Yankee says:

    Cano, Swisher, A-Rod and Granderson better bring their bats today, they’ve been borderline useless so far.

  29. DZ says:

    It’s hysterical that this is the exact team that went what like 50 games during the regular season without getting shutout/scoring at least 3 runs per game! They were amazing those 50 games and now we have the inability to score in the playoffs.

  30. Brian in NH says:

    Just a few thoughts….
    The MSM is not even mentioning that the Orioles hitters have been basically just as dreadful (or that the Yankees pitching staff has been quite good).

    I just don’t understand how a team that was the best in the AL can be striking out so freakin much. How the hell can Joe Saunders, he of a 5.77 K/9 (5.13 for his career) STRIKE OUT THE SIDE (Jeter, Ichiro, Tex) in the third inning after Jayson Fucking Nix leads off with a double??

    Lastly, the TBS strike zone thing was actually pretty terrible last season, but its definitely improved this year, and you can clearly see how awful the ump’s strike zone was for both teams.

    • MannyGeee says:

      ironically, the TBS strike zone has gotten better, the umpires are getting worst

    • not that mike says:

      The O’s are supposed to “crack” in the Playoffs – no one has any experience, and they are a young team facing the Yankees with their star-power and payroll.

  31. DZ says:

    I want to see gardner for granderson tonight, if it gets late, put in grandy for a late ph hr, nunez at dh as well.

  32. Andy Pettitte's Fibula says:

    CC’s gonna need to pitch a shutout today for the Yanks to win.

    Granderson has turned into 2011 Adam Dunn, all or nothing and mostly nothing and Swisher has pulled his usual October disappearing act. Arod sadly is just a shell of what he used to be, done in by age and injury.

    If Girardi had a pair, he’d start Chavez at 3rd, Gardner in CF, Ibanez in LF and DH Nunez leaving Arod, Swisher and Granderson on the bench.

  33. trueblue says:

    6 more years of Arod, 4 more years for Tex.. You need to let Granderson walk after next year and Swisher walk after this one. With 2 absolutely awful contracts holding down the corner IF spots, you can’t clog up the OF with big $$ for little meaningful production. This team has construction issues that will really get ugly over the next few seasons.

    • Bavarian Yankee says:

      it will get even get uglier when they extend Cano’s contract.

      btw: I don’t think Tex will be much worse in 4 years than he’s been this year. He’s still above average and the numbers still suggest that there’s lots of room for a rebound. Give him a healthy season and he’ll be fine.

  34. NePa Yankee says:

    Stop respecting Flanny!!!

  35. JLC 776 says:

    Watching Jeter wave his bat at a ball two feet out of the strike zone was kind of the breaking point for me.

    Two teams of professional ballplayers that just don’t seem to care. Terrible baseball.

    • MannyGeee says:

      or 2 complete pitchers duals, which from a baseball fan perspective is fucking awesome!

      that said, hit the goddam ball Yankees

    • Yankee Fan 1 says:

      Jeter has multi hit games every game this series and scored the only run yesterday. Really don’t think he’s the problem

  36. Robert says:

    Good pitching stops mediocre hitting. Get Ready for a Boston Red Sox colapse next year………

    Only chance for recovery find 3 new outfielders and a catcher that can hit!!

    Today its up to CC to do what Verlander did and I think he will…

    AROD”s body has betrayed him he never recovered from hip injury,he never will,look for Yanks to eventually release him and pay him basically to stay home. All his money is guarenteed!!!

  37. rolling thunder says:

    Buck Showalter vs. Joe Gump with the season on the line?

    I’m not liking this. Not one bit.

  38. Hall and Nokes says:

    If Joba isn’t available tonight (or for a couple of days but not long term), would you burn him for an extra position player tonight and take your chances without him in the ALCS?

  39. Pink Shirt says:

    If Girardi is going to pinch hit for ARod in the bottom of the 13th why not just sit him to begin with? At this point they are pretty much equal defensively and Chavez might be able to hit a fly ball when the Yanks need it.

    • not that mike says:

      Girardi couldnt have Arod strike out and end the game – SportsCenter had the whole segment on Arod’s “last outs” – adding to that would be even worse

  40. Eddards says:

    If CC can’t pitch a shutout tonight he will lose. And if we lose the whole team should be blown up. Girardi should be shown the exit along with Kevin Long. Rothschild can be retained for the next regime, he ain’t doing nothing wrong this postseason.

    Girardi- Fired
    KLong – Fired
    ARod – DFA – Take the salary hit just to get rid of him
    Swisher – Let walk
    Cano – Don’t re-sign
    Granderson – Trade

    The only way Girardi can win tonight is if he sits Granderson and ARod and CC throws a shutout. He won’t though because those are his guys and Girardi would rather go down with his guy than win a World Series and that’s why Joe should be fired. ARod should not hit against Darrin Oday with the game on the line, ever.

  41. Eddards says:

    People keep saying well PH Ibanez in the 8th would have been a waste because Buck would just walk him. Sorry, but isn’t that better than ARod striking out which he’s done every AB vs Oday? All they needed was a fly ball and Swisher had actually been hitting some deep ones. ARod isn’t even making contact vs right handers, especially Oday. Even if Swish hits a groundball, if it’s in the right spot it’s a run and the ballgame. Awful strategy by Girardi.

  42. JJ says:

    So sick and tired of the Swisher love affair in the Yankee blogosphere. I got ripped a few days ago for saying he is one of the worst postseason hitters in MLB history and that he’s incapable of performing … Still want to bang that drum? If you do, then you’re honestly just ignorant.

    And save me the SSS load of crap – because all of you who use this as his defense are the same people who rip into Granderson who has much less playoff ABs in a Yankee uniform.

    It’s ridiculous how he gets a free pass. Why? Because he says dude a lot, acknowledges the bleacher creatures, and does dumb s*** in the OF?! The yuck it up frat boy routine is OK if you’re performing and we are winning games. Now, he just looks like a tool.

    • Eddards says:

      Yeah, and how many times can he fail before we stop using SSS as an excuse? He’s awful and shouldn’t be re-signed unless he turns it around this postseason. At least he was hitting fly balls to the outfield though. ARod and Granderson can do nothing but strike out.

    • not that mike says:

      i sat in RF for the first time got Game 3 ( ususally im in the infield area) and never really saw Swisher’s act in the field….I am annoyed at him because he cannot hit in the post-season, but his prancing around is borderline disrespectful.

      If he wants to be fan-friendly and half-a-clown, go play for the Mets or the Brewers- Yankee Stadium is the big leagues, and perhaps if he worried less about him image and working off nervous energy and concentrated on the game he could drive in a run occasionally

      • JJ says:

        Agree. It seems mind blowing that someone could play so well during the regular season and yet be incapable of duplicating this production in the postseason, but that’s just how it is with Swisher. The fans and the organization needs to accept that and just move on.

  43. Chris says:

    Where’s Minnesots when we need them?

  44. Gerald Williams' Hairline says:

    Todays Line-up:
    Gardner CF
    Jeter DH
    Ibanez LF
    Cano 2B
    Tex 1B
    Martin C
    Chavez 3B
    Nix SS
    Ichiro RF

    This line-up would score atleast 5 runs….

  45. Eddards says:

    ARod is a platoon player and should be treated as such for the rest of the postseason. If they advance, are they really going to trot him out there against Fister, Scherzer, Verlander? He’ll come up 12 times and strike out 8 times. Gonna trust him vs Benoit and Valverde? There’s another 5 strikeouts. And the only one who will top him in strikeouts is Curtis Granderson who has struck out 9 times this series. Just atrocious.

  46. Wayne says:

    Even if we beat Baltimore had we won last night we would have had our best shot of beating Detroit since cc would have pitched game 1 against Detroit and verlander would face us once on full rest. Now if we win we will have the same problem with cc against Detroit. I think Baltimore if they beat us will get beat by Detroit. Looks like its detroits year to win world series. Verlander wins his 1st world series ring .

    • Eddards says:

      I think Verlander will be on full rest in Game 3 and 7 of the ALCS. To match him, CC would have to go on short rest in Game 3 or go on full rest in Game 4 and then short rest in Game 7. Girardi may have lost the ALDS last night, but even if CC bails him out tonight he may have already lost the ALCS before a pitch is even thrown. He really blew it sending ARod out there to hit vs Oday.

  47. milt mankoff says:

    Isn’t it the case that in every completed playoff series this year the team that had the poorer regular season record beat the team with the better one. Atlanta lost to St. Louis, Detroit beat Oakland, SF beat Cincy so far. I think maybe Orioles and Texas had identical records, but runs scored/runs scored against favored texas by a mile and yet Baltimore won. This pattern would predict a Baltimore victory tonight. Of course, I don’t believe in such paranormal narratives as being predictive in any other spehere of life, but if St. Louis beats Washington I might change my mind only because trivia contests thrive on this sort of thing and they always need fresh material.

    If I was an Orioles fan I would be bemoaning their even more indept offense. No one has mentioned that forcing a game 5 means that CC, even if tghe yanks won, would pitch twice in the next series only if he could go on three days rest vs. Verlander in a game 7. Wouldn’t bet on that matchup even on regular rest.

  48. Goyanks5202 says:

    Kate Hudson, where are you?

  49. mick taylor says:

    an earlier post made the excellent point that torre pinch hit for tino martinez in the world series even though i think he hit 40 home runs that year. as bad as a rod and grandy have been swisher is worse because he came up at the crucial points in the game and could not deliver. people forget that in the second inning we had arod on first. if swisher can drive him in or at least move him over and we score the first run, i think the orioles would have folded. but instead he does the worst possible thing by hitting into a double play. in defense of arod, in that at bat against o’day, he is very hard to hit if you are right hansded batter. but swisher had the advantage of batting left handed and choked. tonite swisher will again choke i say play gardner in right or ibanez. if not swisher will look like bill veek’s midget up there if he is hitting in a crucial spot

  50. not that mike says:

    The entire world is upside down…Hughes having people swing and miss for a strikeout??

  51. mick taylor says:

    if hammels has a brace on his knee would his ability to field a bunt be impaired

  52. Joe says:

    Am I missing something how do all 5 LDS series go 5 games aren’t there 2 ALDS and 2 NLDS no one else caught that?

  53. rogue says:

    …and another sombrero for Senor Granderson.

    O-lay!!!

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