It’s ok

It’s OK, really! I am not happy, don’t get me wrong. I wanted to be done with the ALDS on Friday! And we SHOULD have swept them. But, like I said, it’s OK. Verlander was the one pitcher I thought could slow down the bats, and he did. Aside from Johnny Damon, he ruled the Yanks. Well, Matsui got 3 hits, which gave us one of the runs. A-Rod missed a big opportunity to redeem himself with the bases loaded and 2 outs. But Verlander should get more credit for the K, then A-Rod should be condemned for it. The Yanks threw away opportunities throughout the game. Including the last up, Johnny Damon, with Melky pinch running off Matsui’s last hit on 1st.

Has anyone ever heard the best defense against great hitting is great pitching? Well that’s what happened today. Verlander is the man today, and deserves all the credit. The Yanks had a great inning (the 4th) and 8 poor innings of offense.

Mike Mussina pitched OK, I can’t say he was bad at all. Normally, 4 runs would be just fine when you consider the Yanks average nearly 7 runs a game. Which brings me to Brian Bruney. His inning may well have been the brightest spot of the afternoon for Yankee fans, at least after the 4th inning. Struck out the 1st two batters, and fielded the 3rd batters shot to throw him out at 1st. 1-2-3, nice and fast and efficient. He looked great!

OK, so on to Motor City for the Big Unit Friday Night. I still don’t know how I feel about him pitching Friday. OK, that’s not true. I’d rather he did NOT pitch Friday. I think we can do better without him! If he pitches, we will probably need 8 or 9 runs to win… I hope I am completely wrong. I hope his back is better, and he is the Randy of…. well the Randy that is GOOD would be fine. He doesn’t have to throw a shutout, but he can’t be giving up homers like hot dog vendors.

So the series is tied at 1. Nothing is surprising in this ALDS so far, for any of the teams. The Yanks were the only home team that didn’t lose Tuesday! We must move on, we are champions. We will move on, and we will conquer, of this I have no doubt. But I still did not want to lose today!!! This is too good of a team to have the offense shutdown. Did I mention Verlander deserves some credit here? I think we lucked out not having him in game 1, since he probably won’t be available for game 5 if needed.

We face Kenny Rogers on Friday. Too bad he wasn’t pitching in the boogie down, we know how that works for him! But lets face it, he has 17 wins this season, and a nice ERA @ 3.84. On paper he looks better than most of our staff. He’s got more wins than Moose, and certainly a better ERA than the big unit. If stats do make predictions, this should end with the Yanks winning 7-4. Again, lets pray for The good unit to show up.

Till next time,

Spags

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View from M15 ALDS Game 1

Wow. This is embarrassing! Almost TWO MONTHS since I have posted anything at all! This was not my intention when I signed up for this blog at all. I have been so busy I have not had time for anything. I watch what games I can, when I can, usually after they are over via mlb.tv. But with the new baby, the other baby, and working tons of overtime, I just haven’t been able to get on here and type. So I apologize to all the people who follow my blog; both of you!

I have been following all along the last two months of course. What a September to remember! I won’t bore you with a retake. But let me summarize with this: JETER=MVP.

I decided I needed to commit more time to Baseball, and my sanity, so I splurged and bought a ticket to the ALDS Game 1 Yesterday. Got the ticket from stubhub for about $145 for a really decent seat! I went alone, something I have never done before, so I could really concentrate on the game. I really had a good time overall, the fans around me were really nice. My seat was on the main level by 1st at the back wall, so I had nobody behind me except the elevated section, which allowed me to stand as much as I wanted. Plus I had an end seat. I really would not mind these seats all the time! Section M15 Row E Seat 23. The guy next to me was an ex Yankee employee who shared some stories, but I am not a small guy, and he was even bigger. I was really glad I had the ability to stand because it was QUITE cramped trying to sit.

Here is what my view was like:
Pict1661_sm_4 

The game did not disappoint, nor surprise. My call before the start was 9-3 Yanks, not far off the 8-4 final. Abreu, Giambi and Jeter shined the brightest, but everyone did well. Wang did not have his “best stuff” it seemed, but he sure got the job done. It seemed like he left a few pitches a little too high. The home plate ump must have been on valium. It seemed to take him forever to make a strike call, especially when it was a 3rd strike. And this seemed to get worse through the game. When A-Rod struck out, I’m not sure anyone realized what had even happened! Then he couldn’t see anything but balls when Farnsworth came out. Like 7 balls called in a row! When he finally called strike three again, it was another long delay, but he finally gave Kyle the K.

The stand out was of course, El Capitan,  Derek Jeter. FIVE FOR FIVE!!! The fifth coming in the form of a solo Homer into the black bleachers. Unreal, seriously. Abreu? How’s about 4 RBIs. 2 more came from Giambi, 1 each from Jeets and Shef. The lefties did great against the mediocre Nate Robertson, who wasn’t so mediocre against lefties most of the year. In fact he was lights-out against them in 2006, until he faced the YANKEES in OCTOBER. He only gave up two homers to lefties in 2006, one of them was to Giambi last night! In fact he has only given up 35 TOTAL HITS against lefties, including what he gave up last night. I understand why they gave him the first start, but it just didn’t work out. I really like the guy though, so I almost feel bad for him.

Shef at 1st? Awesome! He had a nice stretch, and really surprised me with how well he played. With Shef back in the lineup….. well look at it this way, our weakest hitter in the lineup now is possibly Jorge Posada, which is really saying something. I’d want Jorge up in the clutch over most players in the league! I have said it before, but it bears repeating. The opposing pitcher has nobody to pitch around, nobody to walk, NO BREAKS in the lineup from 1 through 9!

Look at the lineup from Tuesday night:

  1. Johnny Damon
  2. Derek Jeter
  3. Bobby Abreu
  4. Gary Sheffield
  5. Jason Giambi
  6. Alex Rodriguez
  7. Hideki Matsui
  8. Jorge Posada
  9. Robinson Cano

Our number NINE was 3rd in the AL in BA! How many #9s hit .340??? Is there ANY batter there that a pitcher would feel good about facing? That lineup may ALL end up in Cooperstown. This IS the MURDERS ROW of the new Millennium.

Well this may be a fairly lame post, but it is the best I can do with the time I have to do this today. Hopefully I can get a little better for the next 10 October wins the Yanks will have, before achieving #27.

Until next time!

Spags

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3 up and 3 down

As in, The Yanks are 3 games up in 1st place, or the Red Sox are three games down. Sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good. The Yanks are lucky the Red Sox got swept, while the White Sox had their way with them. It’s not like there were any blowout games. All three of the Games in the windy city could have gone either way.

I had written a long post on the rubber game that somehow got lost during the publishing process. This really upset me. I had put a lot of time in it. Mostly it was about Randy Johnson. But now I have had more time to think about it. I don’t know WHAT to do with this guy! Good thing it isn’t up to me, huh? I think it just comes down to age. Sometimes he’s got it, and sometimes he don’t. When he does, he is awesome, when he doesn’t, it’s REALLY bad. So what will Joe do come September or in the playoffs??? He should not be #1, I have said that before. Moose, then Wang, then Johnson. That should work OK for September. But come playoffs, I just don’t know if we want him in AT ALL! OK, here come all the "With that salary?", "He’s a post-season veteran!", "It’s Randy #*@*^ Johnson!" replies. Yeah, I know that. I supported the Johnson trade when it happened to, hoping we would get "the old Randy", not the OLD Randy. We can’t afford to give away games in playoffs. But Randy may be a great PEN pitcher for the playoffs! "huh?" Yeah, I said it. Why not? **** lets face it; the guy has a real temper. He might get so pissed off that he comes out and shells every batter he faces. Warning to camera men: keep cameras out of Randy’s face during this time period.

Someone please play catch with A-Rod.

Kudos to the new guys! Abreu finally got a homer, and has been a great addition to the team thus far. So has Wilson! Lidle has still only had the one start, we will see how he does tonight against the Angels. Good Luck Corey!

Robbie Cano: WELCOME BACK! You wouldn’t know he was ever injured from his swing. Since his return, he has gone 5 for 9, and his defense has been good to great. Had to love that over-the-shoulder Jeter/Mantle style basket catch.

It was a big relief (could that be Randy’s new name?) to see Johnny Damon and Jason Giambi both back in the game. I was worried we were going to lose one or both of them for a few games, glad they were mild injuries.

That’s all for now. What do you expet before 5 AM? :-)

Spags

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We are watching history in the making

Pict1402_1 The history of World Championship #27! We are watching it right now. I’m not the kind of guy who claims every year that this is our year again. But I really believe it this year.

Steady pitching will be the key! First off, the rotation should not be starting with Johnson anymore. The Yanks REAL ace is Moose! Johnson is not even a #2 at this point. Rotation should be Mussina, Wang, Johnson, Lidle, Wright, with the later two swapable. Lidle looked GREAT 1st time out, but still a question mark. Wright has done real well his last two outings. Not hit by any balls OR bats, but still only giving 6 innings. With the pen the way it’s been, 6 is OK, as long as we are in the game. That’s all our pitchers need to do though, is keep us in the game. They don’t need to throw shutouts, although you won’t hear anyone complain when it happens. The bats will pervail more times than not. Game 2 of the recent Baltimore series was the exception more than the rule, that’s a fluke. All year the Yanks have bounced back WELL when shut down offensively. In fact whenever they get shut down, I almost feel bad for the team they play next game.

Lidle was, in my humble opinion, a much bigger acqusition than most people seem to say. He was a footnote on the Abreu trade deal. Wilson was almost a footnote to his own trade, barely mentioned. These trades were huge, hats off to Cash again. But we needed that #5 pitcher so bad. Our combined #5 (Chacon, Ponson, etc) up until Lidle on a scale of 1-10 were a 10, 10 being their ERA! If Lidle brings an ERA down the stretch of what seems a very doable 4.5, the bats should win most of the games.

I can’t say enough lately about the pen! Primarily Scott Proctor, but Farnsworth deserves his due for sure. That Mariano Rivera guy seems to be working out well too. Not sure why Joe isn’t using Mike Myers more. Sure he is only a LOOGY, but use him that way! Plus he was great in all the Austin Powers movies. I think we will see him more down the stretch though. We will see how Joe manages the pen when playing Boston in all those key games coming up. I don’t see Joe pulling Proctor or Farnsworth when big papi comes up, but Myers could make for a good transition from one to the other, if the timing is right.

So why this year? Well the stars are aligned right now! Boston got the big injury hit now. NOT as bad as the Yanks had, but bad. All year long, we have been on Bostons heels. That was WITH all our big injuries. Think about it. We did what we did with Matsui, Sheffield, and Cano out, not to mention Pavano, Dotel, etc. Boston was at 100% strength that whole time! Now the tables have turned a little, and we gained ground, passed, and are currently holding. Boston picked up Javy Lopez to help with the hurt captain. BTW, I don’t wish injuries on ANYONE, but if it had to happen to a Sawk, couldn’t happen to a nicer guy than Varitek. OK, so Boston was healthy, we weren’t. We got some new blood, and that made us better now. The young blood had stepped up NICELY during our injured time, especially Melky and Cairo (now He’s hurt!). But we STILL don’t have Matsui, Shef, and Cano!!! Give us back our other 3 all-star players in September, and I believe we are TRULY unstopable this year. Throw Dotel into the mix, and maybe even Pavano, on a 40 man roster, and we have a fearsome pitching rotation, and pen. The defense has not been a real problem at all.

The bats? Fahgitaboudit! The only team that is close, as usual, is Boston. But really only the top of their order. We will have it all the way through! The Yanks were in 2nd place in total runs scored most of the year WITH ALL THE INJURIES! We will no doubt rise to 1st, and stay there. We will have hitting, power, baserunning, stealing, everything!

The lineup could look like this:
Damon
Jeter
Abreu
Giambi
A-Rod
Matsui
Cano
Shef
Posada

That’s like having TWO SETS of "top of the lineup" lineups! Numbers 5-8 could be the top 4 on ANY team, and do well. The opposing pitchers will have NO easy outs, no "breaks". Who you gonna walk to get to? Everyone is protected, and it doesn’t really matter WHAT order you put these guys in. Although i am very curious to see how Joe does that. I would assume it will depend more on the other teams pitcher than anything else. Nobody in baseball will have a batting lineup like this! Have they ever? This will be the new Murders Row! I can’t wait. My Birthday is September 1st, my gift will be the lineup mentioned above. Happy Birthday to me!

Just watch, and enjoy the rest of the year, ’cause we will be looking back on this as (another) historical year.

LETS GO YANKS!

Spags

Tommy John Enters the World

Tj600_1

OK, I’m exhausted, but excited, so I had to post this real fast before I go to bed.

TOMMY JOHN has entered the world tonight. Obviously I don’t mean the old Yanks pitcher here. Thomas John Spagnolo.

My Wife gave birth on August 4th at 9:37 PM. TJ weighed in at 8 Lbs. 7 Ozs @ 20". Mom and Baby are doing great. What can I say, I’m a proud Papa, again. So I had to brag a little.

Way to go Yanks! Five in a row, and 1 game up in first! Can’t comment on the game, only saw the score. Nice outing Yesterday too, boy am I falling behind! I was real glad about what I heard of Lidle’s 1st outing, and Mr. Wilson sounds like he is fitting in fine. love the new trades so far!

Spags

August 2nd, 1979

It was a hot day the way I remember it. Not as hot maybe as it is today, but it was hot. I was at my friends house, hanging out with a few other friends. I was 15 years old. The Yankees had one of the best teams they ever put together, and they meant more to me than almost anything in my life at that time. They were a VERY special group to me. I had baseballs at home with ALL their signatures on them. Some singles, some with the whole team, some with 5 or 6 of the players, scribed with sayings like "to a chip off the old blockhead – your Dads kinda ugly, but your alright" #15 – Thurman Munson.

My Father was a drunk. He isn’t any more, he has been sober for years now. But most children of alcoholics look back at horror stories of their parents. I had my share of them too, but my Father was a HAPPY DRUNK, and very well liked. He hung out in a bar called "The Orangeburg Pub" back then, quite often. So did the players after games! So he brought me a few times. Sometimes we would stop on the way home from a game. The first time, I was BLOWN AWAY. I walked in, and there are all of my idols, sitting around having beers, waving ME and my FATHER over. Thurman Munson. Catfish Hunter. Sparky Lyle. etc….

I don’t have any of the balls I got signed over the years, or any of the programs or shirts or my old glove with all the sigs. My house burned down in the early 80s, and all that stuff with it. I don’t remember what the last day was that I went with my Dad to The Orangeburg Pub, or what day was his last trip. But I know neither one of us ever went again after August 2nd, 1979.

Back to that hot day with my friends, we were just hangin out, not doing much. It was too hot to play ball, we were probably just talking about girls, or how much disco ******, or how our sideburns were coming in. Or maybe we were talking about the racial tension that seemed to be back in NY the worse I had seen since the first year they did bussing. I don’t really know what we were talking about. I do know we had the radio on, but not what song had just finished. It was Probably Pink Floyd: Another brick in the wall Part 2. That song was on pretty much around the clock then. I can’t even recall exactly what the guy on the radio said, but it didn’t much matter how he said it. The message was very clear.

282munson_cover
Thurman Munson had crashed in his plane on landing, and was killed. Thurman Munson was dead! Our Yankee Captain! The best player I knew of in my generation. Dead! This can’t be! Gotta be some sick joke WPLJ was playing on us! Turn on a news or sports channel! We switched over to AM, it didn’t take much scanning on the dial to find someone else talking about it. We just stood there looking at the radio, or the ground. There were no Mets fans among us, and certainly no fans of any other teams. Every one of us in that group had lived in the Bronx (although at that point we all lived in Westchester). We bled Pinstripes. It was different back then, too. We all played baseball growing up, watched it whenever we could, and went to games all the time. We all went with our parents, and we went on our own when we could get a few bucks together for a bleacher ticket. I think it was like $1.50 back then. $5.00 would get us TO the game, into the game, a soda, and home.

We lived and breathed baseball. Not on video games, we actually played the real game. Along with stickball, stoopball, run the bases, wiffle ball, and half ball. If it was anything LIKE baseball, we played it. Kids today, I am sad to say, are different. My own Son knows the players from playing on Playstation. Not from watching the games, having baseball cards, or going to games.

15_1
So when I say we were DEEPLY affected by this, I mean it. My Son could never understand this. He’d be upset, or shocked if it happened to a current player, but it wouldn’t do what it did to us, or at least, to me. When my Father came home, he had tears in his eyes when he saw me. That was the second time I ever saw my Father cry. The first time was when his Father died. I was upset with my friends, we were all upset. We got depressed talking about it, and decided to all go home. But when I saw my Father, thats when the  tears flowed. We weren’t real close any more, to be honest. But this was a tragedy, and Family Tragedies always bring Family back together, at least for a little while. It was like a dream, but it was real, too real. This was a great man! I know "cmon, he was a ball player". NOT TO ME. And ask any Yankee that played with him if he was "just a ball player". Take a look at the video here that Guidry did, talking about Thurm on the anniversary of his death.

Thurman Munsons last words: "Are you guys okay?". The following is from a story in the Daily News, published July 4, 2004 read the whole story HERE. It’s worth reading!

He was also a hero in the last moments of his
life, says Jerry Anderson, who survived the crash and believes he owes
his life to Munson’s poise and tenacity.

 

"He flew that plane right to the ground," Anderson says. "He never gave
up. The same attitude that he took to the plate in the ninth inning of
a 3-3 game is what saved my life."

I wish I could express my feelings better with words. I wish I was a better writer, at least for this one story. I go to Yankee Games still to this day, almost always wearing a #15 jersey. I have other players jerseys, but they don’t mean anything more than just a Yankee Shirt. Just like wearing a Giants Jersey, no big deal, I am just showing my favorite teams. NOT when I put on a #15 Jersey though. That’s a tribute to the man, not the team. Thurman probably would have resented that.

Cap, you will never be forgotten, just like it says on your plaque in Memorial Park.

Sign a petition to put Thurman Munson in the hall of fame!

Visit the official Thurman Munson Site, ThurmanMunson.Com.

Or visit a blog named for getting the cap into the HOF.

Spags

Chase’s Chase

Utley Subtitle: Uterley Amazing!

I have to comment on this now. As a baseball fan in general, you gotta love this guy. Chase Utley hit in his 33rd consecutive game tonight! This is truly outstanding. If his streak ended right now, he could be really proud to add that to his already all-star year. That number ties him for 17th place in all-time hitting streaks. But that doesn’t really tell you how great this is. In the 2000′s, only ONE other guy has had a longer streak. In 2002, Luis Castillo did it for 35 games with The Marlins, which placed him in a tie for 10th, with a guy named Ty Cobb, way back in 1917. Cobb also had a 40 game streak in 1911. in 2003 Albert Pujols went for 30 games, making Chase only the third player in this century to go 30 games or more.

Only 6 players EVER went past 40 games, with number two, Willie Keeler with 44 for Baltimore back in 1897. Of course, the gauntlet was set by The Yankee Clipper, Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio with 56 in 1941. Some people say that is the one record in baseball that will never be broken. I disagree, to the extent that I don’t think it is IMPOSSIBLE. I do think it is highly unlikely. And I don’t feel that way for the fact he was a Yankee. It’s just an AMAZING FEAT. The only record in baseball I say is IMPOSSIBLE to beat is complete games pitched, by of course Cy(clone) Young with 749 COMPLETE GAMES. For a Pitcher to BEAT that, he would have to Start in 30 games a year, for 25 years, and complete ALL THOSE GAMES. I just don’t see that being possible, ever. Oh yeah, Cy (Denton True Young) also had 511 WINS. I think that record is pretty safe too. but I am getting way off subject here. This is why I failed English all the time.

But nobody is chasing 13th place, or 10th. A NICE number to make would be 40, I mean, to be one of only 7 players EVER to do it for 40 games straight would be phenomenal! But nobody is chasing (the tie for) 6th place either. Anyone who is on a hitting streak has one number in mind.
57.
57 is the magic number Chase is Chasing, and everyone else in the Majors who gets up into the high 20s. They start thinking about it at 27 games or so. The writers start talking about it big time at around the same point. By the point Chase is at, Fans everywhere are watching, waiting, every game, to see if he keeps it alive. Every at-bat at every next game is a nail biter for the batter and his Family, and his team, and his fans. And for the Pitcher who is dealing! He wants to be the one to END his roll. But unless the batter in question is hitting against YOUR team, you are rooting against the Pitcher. Even if he IS going against YOUR team, something deep inside is saying, well, let him get a hit, just not something that wins the game!

This is what every player dreams of from little league on up. Chase is now living that dream, feeling that rush, dealing with that pressure. I for one, wish him all the luck in the world. I’d like to see him get to 57! Not because I wanna see Joe’s record broken. That would actually upset me in many ways too. BUT, to SEE it done, in MY lifetime (My father wasn’t even born yet when DiMaggio did it) would be AWESOME. It would be worth that Yankee record going to another club. Besides, everyone knows Jeter, or maybe even Cano, will eventually make the 60 mark. :-)

Good Luck Chase, and anyone else who comes close!

Other MLB Honerable Mention today: Tiger Carlos Guillen hit for the cycle tonight!

Spags

Toronto @ Yankees 8/1/06

Abreu_pinstripped_2_2 Firstly just for fun, take a look at the video of Abreu taking BP here from Yes. He found the bullpen without a problem.

This post will be updated through the game, live.

Jaret Wrong takes the mound tonight. I will be happy if he leaves with more than 5 innings AND the Yankees still IN the game. I hate to be so harsh on the guy, but he has got to start burning some innings! He must see the writing on the wall with Lidle. Hopefully that pressure will make him improve. Wright has a 10.75 ERA against Toronto!!!

1st Inning: We got out of the top of the 1st with only one hit, a double by Catalanotto. They stranded him on third thankfully. Burnett gets a 1-2-3 to finish the 1st inning.

2nd Inning: Wright walks Overbay, and then drills Hill. Then w/2 outs, McDonald smacks a dub to score Overbay. 1-0 Jays. Reed Johnson JUST misses a Homerun. Thankfully it was just a loud strike. Will Jaret make it past the 3rd? He’s been out there forever in this heat, and not fairing well. Abreu records the third out.
For the Yanks, A-Rod strikes out looking… (Boos)…. ABREU IS UP! And back to the dugout.. NICE HUSTLE on a little dinker, he almost made it! In the end, ANOTHER 1-2-3 for AJ Burnett. He’s got good stuff.

3rd inning: NICE catch by Damon to get Catalanotto out. Wells pops up to Miggy. K for Wright! Glaus swings at 3. Finally a 1-2-3 for us!
Bernie lines out. Melky out on a broken bat to Hill. Cairo Doubles! Nice shot to the right corner. JD is up with Cairo ready to come home on 2 outs. Called 3rd strike with Johnny watchin…

4th Inning: Overbay flies out. Hinske hits a rope to center for a hit. Zaun strikes out looking, another K for Wright. But over 80 pitches, only in the 4th inning… This is why he never gets past 5 innings. Hill lines one to Center, moves Hinske to 3rd. McDonald is up. Over 85 pitches now, they already called the bullpen… McDonald grounds out to Jeter, who will lead off.
Jeter walks. Then steals 2nd. That’s #22 for #2, and caught only 2X. I gotta play 2222 tomorrow! The Giambino swats one to right, moves Jeter to 3rd. 1st and 3rd, no outs for A-Rod. Now would be a good redemption time Alex!!! Yes! A-Rod doubles with a nice shot to the right corner and brings home Jeets on the 3-0. Runners at 2nd and 3rd, ABREU up. Lets go Bobby!!! Abreu pulls pitch #8 from AJ for the 3-2. on TEN pitches, Abreu walks. THAT is what his strength is, even when he doesnt hit. Its an arguable check swing, the second for that at-bat, but it was called ball 4 regardless. posada up with the bases loaded. He hits .312 with bases loaded and has 12 Grand Slams! OUCH, struck out. Nice job AJ. BUT, we still got 2 outs to go as Bernie steps up. YES! DOUBLE By Bernie Williams to drive in everybody, 4-1 Yankees! THAT double TIES Bernie with Don Matingly for 2nd on the all-time list of Yankees, only behind the Iron Horse, Lou Gehrig. Congrats Bernie! Melky Cabrera flies out. Boy did Jaret need an inning like this. AJ  should be getting tired now. Abreu’s at-bat got the Yanks an extra run, and a very tired opposing pitcher. That’s more valuable than a solo homer on the 1st pitch. Cairo grounds out to third, end of a LOOONGinning.

5th Inning: Reed johnson leads off, and singles. Catalanotto hits into a 4-6-3 DP. Wells Ks for out #3. Michael Kay was saying earlier "why doesn’t Jaret Wright uses his fastball more often?". Which makes me ask, well, the same thing! I think it’s his best pitch, and at 95, nothing to laught at.
Top of the order for the Yanks. AJ Burnett is OUTTTTTTTTA there. Jeremy Accardo is in from the pen. Who? Ah, doesn’t matter. Damon grounds out. Jeter (who by the way, can "do it all" according to kayleexxx@aol.com :-) ) grounds out to 2nd. Giambi does the same, Mr. Accardo did just fine for the 1-2-3.

6th Inning: Jaret Wright is OUTTTTTTTTA there too now. Hot night, I can’t blame either tonight. But this is par for the course for Jaret. BUT, this is the best outing I have witnessed by him all year. I take back the Jaret Wrong comment! Ron Villone takes over against Glaus. Glaus pops out to Bobby. Overbay pops out to Melky. Alex Rios is in to pinch hit for Hinske. Didn’t help, flied out to Damon for a 1-2-3 from Villone.
A-Rod leads off, with a single. Then steals 2nd. Abreu flies out to center, A-Rod tags, but then stays at 2nd, resepcting Wells arm. WOW. Posada sends a shot to right and Rios makes a **** of a throw to Zaun at home, who makes a **** of a scoop and a tag to get A-rod out at home. That shouldn’t have happened, but gotta give Toronto credit for good play. Bernie gets walked. Accardo is getting the hook for Brian Tallet. Melky singles, bases loaded! BUT, Cairo flies out, and leaves all the boys on base.

7th Inning: Greg Zaun leads off. The 3-2 gets dealt and sent BACK to Villone faster than it was delivered. Luckily, it landed in his glove, and he held it. You gotta see that one live, wow. GREAT snatch by Ron, but i think it was more about self-preservation than getting an out. :-) Aaron Hill takes the 1st pitch for a pop-out to Bobby, then McDonald gets hit by Villone. That will bring in Doctor Proctor. johnson singles to right, 1st and 2nd, 2 outs, Catalanotto up, flies out to Bobby Areu. Damon leads agin, and pops out to short. Jeter singles to bring Pitcher Brandon League in for Brian Tallet. Andy Phillips enters the game, Jeter steals AGAIN! Phillips singles, moving Jeter to 3rd. A-Rod steps up to the plate and grounds out, but Jeter scores! 5-1 Yanks! Abreu grounds out to second. :-( Don’t disregard what he has done tonight just because he didn’t get any hits! 0-3 but with a run, and he had those great long at bats that wear down pitchers.

8th Inning: Wells leads off and singles to left, only to have Glaus hit into a double play; A-Rod-Cairo-Phillips. Overbay grounds to 1st to retire the side.
Posada leads off and grounds out to 1st. Bernie flies out to left. Cabrera flies out to Wells for the 1-2-3. I can atually hear them in the audio booth cueing up Metallica’s Black Album: Track? Enter Sandman of course….

9th Inning: BUT NO, NO SANDMAN! Kyle Farnsworth enters the game to close it out! Due up? Rios, Zaun, and Hill. Rios grounds out to Jeter. Zaun gives Jeter a little more action, with a little blooper for the 2nd out.Aaron Hill comes to the plate for their last chance, and Farnsworth strikes him out!

The Yankees Win! THEEEEEEEEEEEE Yankes Win! Final score 5-1 Yankees.

The SAWKS lost! that means……..  THE YANKEES ARE IN FIRST PLACE!
Lets hold on to it a little while boyz.

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Yankees Player of the Game: I gotta give this one to the guy I thought at the start of my post could hurt us tonight, JARET WRIGHT! Congrats Jaret, and I’m Glad you were the WRIGHT guy tonight, and not the Wrong one. Nice outing.

Runner up: Bernie Williams. The more I think about it, it should have probably gone to Bernie. But I felt so bad for putting down Jaret so hard, I had to give it to him.

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Better backstop for October

Jorges_mas_2

Jorge Posada may find his Maserati easier to drive with his knees hurting less. When I saw him leaving the parking lot a couple weeks ago (photo above), I couldn’t help but notice what a beautiful car it was! Why would his knees hurt less? Well, we will have to see how the last minute deal will play out, but here is how it went. Chacon goes to Pittsburgh. Craig Wilson comes to NY. That’s it! Straight up trade, and a no brainer. AGAIN, Cashman deserves credit.

What’s this gotta do with Jorge???

Wilson Wilson is an outfielder, right? Well yes, he is. But talk about a nice utility player, he also plays 1st base, and CATCHER! I’m not saying I want to replace Georgie, no way! Still in my mind one of our best clutch hitters. Ignore his .avg, it just doesn’t mean much. And honestly, how many Catchers can you name in MLB today that are really BETTER??? A few come to mind that are very good, but all could be argued they are not as good, or maybe better in one category or another. But not better OVERALL. Pudge-rod and (fill in first name) Molina come to mind. What is it with all the good Catchers being Latino? Oh wait, most of the best players are from latin countries nowadays, not the US… But that’s a subject for another day.

Kelly Stinnett was no help to the offense when giving Jorge a break, so we got Sal Fasano. Well that WAS an upgrade to Stinetts bat, but who wouldn’t be? Fasano has actually performed REALLY well so far in pinstripes, but the sample is so small I won’t even post his numbers. Now with this most recent trade, we add a THIRD backup Catcher, or a 2nd big moustache, depending how you look at it. We don’t need to use him as the backstop every day, or even every week. But having him AND Fasano there means Posada should get some REAL days off. And he NEEDS them! He plays SO much better when rested. But the big difference should show up in October, when it will count. Last year, and the year before…. Jorge was just WORN OUT by playoff time. Having a utility player to stand in at 1st AND the OF, AND the plate makes this trade a great deal.

Chacon_dumbfounded Chacon: THANKS FOR LAST YEAR! You were amazing. Between Chacon and Small, WOW. Who’d a thunk it. Chacon was 7-3 with a 2.85 ERA in 14 games, 12 starts! But Chacon has not performed well this year at all, I am sorry to say. For 2006 he was 5-3 with a 7.00 ERA in 17 games, with 11 starts. And those stats actually make him sound better than he looked. So sending him to Steel City, especially after acquiring Lidle, won’t hurt anything.

I hope Torre USES his backup backstops as much as possible for the next 4-8 weeks. Let Jorge be the player he can be when rested will add runs, and WINS when we will need them the most. As far as I am concerned, with our "new" lineup now, until Matsui and Shef come back, we just need to tread water until September. Stay atop the wild card, and right on Bostons heels. But we need to make the most of our games Vs. the Sox. We have 9 to go against them, they will make the difference. We take most of them, and bring in a STRONG Shef, Matsui, and well rested Posada, we will have the most feared batting lineup in MLB come October. And should be sitting in 1st place.

Note to rest of the team: Stay Healthy!!!

It ain’t 4:00 yet!

Abreu_pinstripped_24:00 (eastern) is the end of the trade deadline. So it ain’t over, well, to use a Yogiism, till it’s over.

The more I thought about the trade, the more happy I am about it. It’s a total win for the Yanks. We kept everyone I was afraid were going to get traded. I would have cried if Cano got traded! Melky going would have hurt bad too. Even Cairo, I’d hate to see him go. There are so many good YOUNG future players we can NOT afford to get rid of. Abreu? YES! GREAT! But he isn’t going to help us win the 2009 World Series. Well, it’s highly unlikely anyway. Cano is a "JETERESQUE" type player. HE MUST NOT BE TRADED! Out of everyone "on the block", he should be the #1 priority to keep, at least out of our players in the Majors currently.

From down on the farm, Phil Hughes has got to be retained. He really looks like the real deal. He might even be ready for the bigs now, but personally, I would not want to rush him. I wish I could beg and plead to Cashman directly, but surely he must know, right??? I recall some bad trades in the past, we all know them, right? Some guys you just gotta find a way to keep. I know, I know; "we gotta win NOW!!!"

Did the Jay Beuhner trade years ago help us win that year? Did it cost us wins in later years? It’s like playing solitaire. You can think back and say "if I had moved the K off the 4th row instead of the 6th, I would have won because I would have uncovered that ace earlier. Well maybe if it was at the very end of the game you could see that, but to think that way about a move you made early on in the game, well the move you made changed so many things you don’t know what it might have gained or lost you. Not uncovering that ace might have been what cost you the game, but it might have been some other card (or multiple cards) had you turned the other King. But one move in solitaire you never hesitate to make is moving an ACE UP. You don’t have to think about it. You see an ace, you move it up. It will never hurt you. It’s a no brainer. Cano is an ACE. It appears Hughes is as well, but nobody is proven in the majors until they play in the majors. But WE need to give him that chance, not some other team.

The point of this post is that we have not gotten the one thing we really need. A "KNOWN" starting, winning, pitcher. Someone we can bring in that you KNOW will be unhittable, like we did with Randy Johnson (muted snicker). or a "known" bullpen helper. We can’t be sure what Lidle will bring. But who’s on the block that we would WANT? Only two names pop out at me.

Barry Zito. WOW. That would be AWESOME. Getting a GOOD LEFTY starter? But NOT worth, say; Hughes, Melky, and Cano. And that’s about the only way I see something like that happening is with 2/3 TOP players/prospects. I DON’T like it at that cost. if we can do it with MONEY alone, or a few "maybe" prospects along with the cash. If you can do it just for money, BUY AWAY GEORGE!

D-Train. How cool would it be to get Willis??? But I simply don’t see the Marlins giving him up. the fans would probably perform a coup on the front office. Or would it be a mutiny? Either way, I don’t see it happening at any cost.

That’s it for this installment. I will wait by with my fingers crossed, for 4:00 to pass. Then wait with like a kid on Christams Eve, for tomorrows game seeing Bobby in (blue) pinstripes.

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