It was a tough day for Jon Lieber as the Yanks and Texas pounded them on a cool and overcast day in the Bronx. Forgettable is another word. Emily and I were in the house, and it was great to be out at the game together. There was another big crowd at the Stadium in spite of the threatening weather—it never did rain—and nobody seemed too upset that the Yanks took one on the chin. I think I was more glum than anyone else I saw. There were plenty of kids around, and even in the ninth inning they were making much noise. (The most memorable moment came early in the game when I heard the high-pitched encouragement of a little boy sitting several rows above us, "Come on Bernie, you can do it!")
Jon Lieber was hit but hard. Mark Teixeira launched a bomb into the upper deck in right, and Brad Fullmer, the Rangers' muscle-bound DH, had himself a birthday-worthy afternoon (just not mine), going 3-4 and scoring 4 runs. The Rangers got nine excellent innings from Juan Dominguez, who was making his first major league start. I couldn't tell what he was throwing from our seats, but he seemed to have a slider, or some kind of breaking pitch, that was working very well off of his fastball.
Bernie Williams and Jorge Posada both went 0-4 and looked bad in the process. However, Godziller Matsui also went ofer, but hit the ball hard in three of his four at bats. Ruben Sierra's solo homer into the right field bleachers accounted for the Yankees' lone run. Alex Rodriguez continued his streak on reaching base with a base on balls and a single, and Gary Sheffield—dhing again—had two hits. Down 6-1 with two men on in the sixth, Sheffield absolutely scorched a line drive to left. Only trouble was that he hit it so hard, it didn't have time to drop in for a hit and Eric Young made a nifty sliding grab. Sheff did beat out an infield single in the ninth; down seven runs, it was good to see that he was still hustling.
The game was marked by the passing of Ronald Reagan. When Hank Blalock lead off the fourth inning, a fat guy a few rows down from us, made the announcement. There was a moment of silence during the seventh inning stretch. When Bob Shepard informed the crowd of his passing, there was a collective gasp in the crowd. I was nine years old when Reagan was elected president and I spent my adolescence as a classic Reagan-hater. I used to dream about the day he'd pass away. But I didn't feel much of anything upon hearing the news yesterday. I suspect it's because he seems as if he's been dead for several years now. Regardless, this isn't the appropriate forum for political ranting, so I'll leave it at that.