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It's Only Seventeen
2008-09-02 21:29
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Xavier Nady hit a ball to the moon in the fourth inning of last night's game. Well, it would have gone to the moon, but the catwalk suspended from the Tropicana Dome roof got in the way. That bomb gave the Yankees a 3-1 lead they wouldn't relinquish. The Bombers added two in the fifth, one in the sixth, and capped it off with Alex Rodriguez's 30th homer of the year leading off the eighth. Meanwhile, Mike Mussina scattered ten hits, allowing just two runs over six-plus innings, struck out ten and picked up his 17th win of the season, leaving him with five chances to get the three more wins he needs to set a career-high in that category.

Joba Chamberlain and Dan Giese both made strong returns from shoulder tendonitis. Chamberlain needed one pitch to kill a Rays rally in the seventh and working around a walk and a single for a scoreless eighth. Giese worked a 1-2-3 ninth, striking out Carlos Peña to seal the 7-2 Yankee win. Chamberlian's velocity was a bit down, but he said after the game that his mechanics were a bit out of whack from the time off and that he expected everything to fall into place in his subsequent outings. Most importantly, his shoulder felt just fine.

B.J. Upton made the play of the game on a drive by Rodriguez in the top of the second. Running full speed toward the wall in center, Upton snow-coned Rodriguez's line drive in the webbing of his glove before taking one step up the wall to slow his momentum. In the bottom of the inning, Eric Hinske made the boner of the game (in a game that had its share) when he raced around the bases for a triple while watching Nady and Johnny Damon chase after the ball in left center. Hinske slid safely into third base head first. Only then did he discover that Willy Aybar, who had singled before him, had been held up at third. Forced to vacate the base, Aybar was throw out easily at home. Hinske then failed to score on a subsequent groundout by Jason Bartlett, leaving the game scoreless entering the third inning.

Rodriguez's homer tied him with Mike Schmidt for 12th in major league history. Barring injury, he'll be chasing 600 this time next year.

Comments
2008-09-02 23:29:55
1.   thelarmis
a-rod's homer that tied schmidt, was also his 1,000 extra base hit, which is pretty amazing.

moose moving up some charts, too.

7 games is looking like a mountain : /

nice win though! glad joba's back : )

let's hope pavano goes 3-0 (i can't believe i just typed that!)

2008-09-03 03:28:58
2.   williamnyy23
Right now the Yankees have five potential future hall of famers (Pudge, Jeter, Arod, Mussina, Rivera [and maybe even Posada]). The 1927 Yankees had 7; the 1998 team will probably end up with 3 at the most. I am not sure what that means, but at least there are milestones for which to keep watching.
2008-09-03 05:00:42
3.   Mr OK Jazz TOKYO
2 that's amazing..just wish they were all in their prime right now!

following A-Rod go for the HR record is going to be fun..wonder if Jeter will go for Pete Rose? anyone know where to find the odds on that if he remains healthy?

2008-09-03 05:32:16
4.   ChrisS
3 According to Bill James "Jeter has a 91% chance of reaching 3,000 hits and a 7% chance of reaching 4,000 hits."

http://tinyurl.com/57nkat

I'm pretty sure James had a tool somewhere online that you can plug in ages and career-to-date stats and get odds, but I can't find it.

It would take divine intervention, I think, for Jeter to come close enough to break Rose's record. Rose, as was pointed out to me, had the advantage of being a player-manager in his baseball dotage. He could plunk his name in the line-up regardless of his production (and he did to the tune of 194 hits over two and a half seasons) Considering this is Jeter we're talking about, it's not out of the realm of possibility he gets the keys to the team in his advanced years. Rose also put up 1,360 hits from age 34 through his age 40 season (170 hits/season).

It's an awfully tough record to even approach, let alone break, considering that only five players in the history of the game even broke 3,500 career hits and only two went past 3,800.

2008-09-03 06:00:43
5.   williamnyy23
3 You can plug in the numbers for any milestone here: http://tinyurl.com/2qhmfk

Jeter has a 4% chance of 4,000 hits, assuming he gets 30 more hits this year.

Arod's chances of hitting 763, assuming he hits 7 more HRs, is 51.8%.

Mussina's chances of reaching 300 wins, assuming 2 more wins this season, is 25.8%.

2008-09-03 06:46:24
6.   Just fair
Jeter is less than 10 hits away from passing Ruth. He is also less than 10 hits from passing Gehrig for hits at Yankee Stadium. I think those are pretty cool milestones.
2008-09-03 06:52:02
7.   Raf
4 IIRC, I think Rose was the last player-manager. That's something else we don't see in baseball anymore, not that it was ever a frequent occurrence that I can remember.
2008-09-03 07:59:33
8.   JL25and3
7 I believe that's correct. Before him, Don Kessinger was briefly player-manager of the White Sox, but before Kessinger I think it had been quite some time.
2008-09-03 08:32:43
9.   ChrisS
8

"There have been 10 managers in the last fifty years that were still active players in their debut year as major-league managers:

Pete Rose 1984-1986
Don Kessinger 1979
Joe Torre 1977
Frank Robinson 1975-1976
Yogi Berra 1964-1965
Gil Hodges 1963
El Tappe 1961-1962
Hank Bauer 1961
Solly Hemus 1959
Harry Walker 1955"

http://www.stevepinto.com/Baseball_Knowledge/Baseball_Player/15216.html

Huh. Joe Torre did it all, I guess.

2008-09-03 09:10:21
10.   Schteeve
..but it's old enough, old enough for me.

reb beach guitar solo

2008-09-03 09:19:53
11.   unmoderated
i looked up Nady's homer on hittracker, only 425 feet:

http://www.hittrackeronline.com/hrdetail.php?id=2008_3027

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