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Series Wrap: @ Blue Jays
2007-08-09 07:13
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Offense: Six runs per game almost feels like a slump the way this team has been hitting, but it's still better than the season average of the best offense in the majors, which just happens to be the Yankee offense anyway.

Studs:

Melky Cabrera 7 for 12, 2 2B, 2 3B, RBI, 4 R
Robinson Cano 3 for 9, 2B, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 3 R, 3 BB, HBP, SB
Jorge Posada 3 for 9, 2B, 2 RBI, 2 BB, HBP
Johnny Damon 4 for 8, 2 RBI, 3 R, 2 BB, SB

Duds:

Andy Phillips 2 for 12
Derek Jeter 2 for 12, 2 RBI
Bobby Abreu 2 for 10, 3B, 4 RBI, 2 R, BB, 3 K
Wilson Betemit 0 for 4, K
Jason Giambi 1 for 5, R

Jose Molina went 0 for 1 after Joe Torre put the subs in yesterday's blowout finale.

Rotation: Just one quality start, though Andy Pettitte came close, getting the hook with two outs in the sixth in the opener. Roger Clemens was dominant, but also had a short outing lasting just six full (yes, he was ejected for throwing at Alex Rios, but he was at 90 pitches and knew what was going to happen). Chien-Ming Wang had the worst start of his major league career by far.

Bullpen: Despite turning over nearly half of the personnel, the Yankee pen still allowed ten runs in 11 2/3 innings. Lack of length on the part of the starters can be blamed to a certain degree, as can a pair of lopsided scores that allowed Torre to try out some of those untested arms. Still, that's unacceptable.

The Good:

Believe it or not, Kyle Farnsworth, who pitched a perfect inning, striking out one and throwing nine of 12 pitches for strikes in the finale. Of course, he did that with his team behind by 11 runs. Mariano Rivera struck out the heart of the Jays order on 16 pitches (11 strikes) to nail down a one-run lead in the opener.

The Bad:

Jeff Karstens has pitched twice since being activated from the DL. Both times he was brought in after a disaster start and asked to escape a jam and eat innings. Both times he escaped the jam without further damage and ate up three innings, but he also allowed a total of eight runs in those 6 1/3 frames. Last night he allowed five runs (though only two earned) in three inning on three hits and three walks and had to be pulled with two outs in the sixth. He has a 10.12 ERA on the season. He needs to go. Jim Brower needs to go as well, though he hasn't been nearly as bad in his two opportunities thus far. Brower allowed a run on three hits and a walk over an inning and a third in this series, also allowing an inherited runner (1B, no outs) to score. I think that's the best that can be expected of him. Ron Villone picked up where Karstens left off in the sixth last night allowing two runs on four hits and two walks over 1 1/3 innings and needing 51 pitches to do so, though he did strike out three.

Conclusion: Heading into the tough part of the schedule, I'm still concerned about the pitching, but the offense is so strong that even against the league's best it may be enough to compensate. Still, while the bench is suddenly the best it's been since the days of Darryl, the pen continues to be a work in progress. I'll have more on the overall state of the team heading into Cleveland tomorrow morning in a "Series Wrap" of the entire now-completed cupcake portion of the schedule.

Comments (107)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-08-09 09:05:26
1.   JL25and3
I would probably give Brower one more look. His last outing might not have looked so bad if Damon hadn't butchered Thomas's double quite so brutally (although, to be fair, it might have looked just as bad anyway).

But there's no reason to leave Karstens on the ML roster another day.

2007-08-09 09:34:08
2.   RIYank
Folks could use a little good news, I bet.

Here's Ian Kennedy's line from last night, against the PawSox:

6 ip, 5 h, 0 r, 0 er, 1 bb, 9 k

2007-08-09 09:34:12
3.   Orly Yarly NoWai
Joba&
Chris&
Edwar&
Mariano.
2007-08-09 09:48:53
4.   yankz
2 For an extended version of that glowing post, the SWB blog to the right is an absolute must read today.
2007-08-09 09:52:36
5.   markp
Time for Edwar et al to replace Villone and Brower. No more Torre guys who can't get outs.
2007-08-09 09:54:46
6.   Count Zero
1 Out of fairness, I agree -- otherwise we're acting just like JT does. But in all honesty, watching him pitch, he has a pretty good slider and that's it. He seems to be predicated on getting hitters to swing at that slider out of the zone...but he doesn't have anything to keep them honest with. His fastball isn't good enough to make hitters fear the gas and realize too late that it's the slider. (See Joba.)

Unless he has stuff he hasn't shown yet, he looks consistently ready to be lit up by ML hitters. I feel like he's been very lucky so far...

2007-08-09 10:01:38
7.   markp
Looking at Brower'a career, he had a couple of decent years in which he may have been overworked. Other than those two, he;s been pretty bad.
2007-08-09 10:32:34
8.   Yankee Fan In Boston
yesterday i posted a link to an article about mike lowell and the sox talking about an extension, and hoping that meant that boras would apply a little less pressure on alex rodriguez to opt out...

well, now mike lowell says that the reports are nothing but bologna.

http://tinyurl.com/2scbd4

...dang it.

the good news? david ortiz says that he feels old.

2007-08-09 10:47:16
9.   JohnnyC
yeah and he's ugly too.
2007-08-09 11:12:48
10.   ric
but he's a millionaire.... and we're here at our desks sitting in uncomfortable chairs ;)
2007-08-09 11:20:32
11.   3rd gen yankee fan
9 ...and fat... and has fans like ric.
2007-08-09 11:48:12
12.   ric
11

all players should be so lucky. oh, im sorry, were you actually being sarcastic?

2007-08-09 12:21:42
13.   Schteeve
10 I have a very comfortable chair, thank you very much.
2007-08-09 12:28:56
14.   pistolpete
8 A human being can only carry around so much extra weight before the joints start to suffer.
2007-08-09 12:32:35
15.   Shaun P
Since its so quiet, here's a fun link. Earl Weaver says "HA!" was OK by him:

http://tinyurl.com/2y4kvc

2007-08-09 12:40:49
16.   Shaun P
And, by the way, Tigers down 5-0. Tampa Bay is batting in the 7th, first and third, no one out, middle of the lineup up.
2007-08-09 12:48:23
17.   Shaun P
Now 6-0 Tigers down; first and second, one out.
2007-08-09 12:50:32
18.   Shaun P
Now its 7-0, Tigers losing to TB. First and third, still one out.
2007-08-09 12:50:48
19.   yankz
13 Leather and swiveling, biatch! HA!
2007-08-09 12:52:41
20.   Shaun P
Sorry, typed too soon. 8-0 Tampa Bay over Detroit, top of the 7th, but now two out (with a man on first).

C'mon Tigers, don't figure out your pitching woes for at least a couple of weeks . . .

2007-08-09 12:52:44
21.   Schteeve
19 Herman Miller Aeon(or whatever) Chair!
2007-08-09 13:11:45
22.   Bama Yankee
21 Like this one?
http://tinyurl.com/2u2usa
2007-08-09 13:13:49
23.   pistolpete
20 Wow, you mean we could be in first place for the WC by the end of the day without actually doing anything?!
2007-08-09 13:19:19
24.   ric
13

jesus h- it was a joke intended to separate we working stiffs from the rich athletes! no need to whip em out and see whos chair is the biggest ;)

2007-08-09 13:23:36
25.   RIYank
Let's face it, a lot of us are probably fat and ugly, too.

Uh, not me, of course.

2007-08-09 13:31:19
26.   Shaun P
23 If the M's lose and TB hangs on, yes. The Yanks will be tied for 1st place for the WC, with Detroit and Seattle. Technically, Seattle will be ahead by .001 (.553571 WPct vs .552632), but that's meaningless, right? =)
2007-08-09 13:35:16
27.   Bama Yankee
24 Here you go:
http://www.tardsite.com/largechair.htm
2007-08-09 13:36:10
28.   Shaun P
Off topic - when I post, or refresh, the page is a little too high, so the first line of the last comment (or whatever) is cut off, and I have to scroll up to see it. Anyone other Firefox users having this problem?
2007-08-09 13:38:18
29.   yankz
Tomorrow's game is a tough one. Hughes vs. Carmona? Yikes.

27 Tardsite.com?

28 Nope, normal for me.

2007-08-09 13:38:49
30.   RIYank
28 Yeah. But only with Firefox.
2007-08-09 13:42:43
31.   ny2ca2dc
nice fluff piece on Melky: http://tinyurl.com/yo3jda

some quotes:

Cabrera, who has worked hard to improve his English and now has confidence to engage reporters, said he will often be the thorn in Robinson Cano's side, urging the Yankees' other notable Baby Bomber to walk the concrete corridor and join Long in the Yankee Stadium batting cages.

Long says Cabrera, following part of Alex Rodriguez's workout regimen, has shed about 10 pounds from his frame, helping his swing be tighter to the ball.

"I told [Cabrera] one day when we were struggling, 'We need to get on base. If you want to win, we have to get on base,'" Cano said. 'If those other guys don't find anybody on base, that's a different game. When you've got men on base, you do your job, no matter what.'"

"We don't know how many home runs he's going to hit -- maybe 15 on a regular basis," Torre said. "But his ability to hit is just calm during key at-bats. I think that's pretty impressive. He showed us that last year, and I think he's doing a lot of that again."

2007-08-09 13:44:15
32.   Shaun P
29 30 I think I just figured it out. Let me post this and I'll let you know.
2007-08-09 13:45:26
33.   Shaun P
29 30 Bingo! RIYank, are you using Ad Block? I am, and when I turned it off just on the Banter, boom, everything lined up properly again. Removing the small google-based ads just at the end of the posts must have been throwing it off.
2007-08-09 13:47:06
34.   yankz
33 Haha, I'm using AdBlock and it works for me.
2007-08-09 13:48:20
35.   RIYank
Huh. No, I'm not using AdBlock.
But anyway there's no problem when I use Safari, so I'm just doing that now.
2007-08-09 13:49:38
36.   RIYank
What's up with the Tigers? Losing 7-1 and then 8-1 to the D-Rays?

Maybe we can do them a favor this weekend, though. I hope they appreciate it when they come to NY.

2007-08-09 13:49:55
37.   yankz
31 Nice, thanks. I'm glad to hear Cano listens to him, though I wish he didn't have to.
2007-08-09 13:50:23
38.   Bama Yankee
29 I believe it stands for "The Atlanta Roadways Digest" (good thing they are not based in Urbana).
2007-08-09 13:51:42
39.   yankz
31 And it's really cool how mature the C&C boys appear to me. I bet that most kids would be fine just riding the waves of the stars. But they weren't, and have really stepped up. I'm excited about the next few years.
2007-08-09 13:52:30
40.   yankz
38 Ah, ok. But seriously, they named their website TARD site?!
2007-08-09 13:54:03
41.   Shaun P
34 35 Hmm. Funky.

36 Indeed. Where is Jim Dean? I figured he'd be giddy that both Miller and Rogers are hurt, leaving just one lefty in the Tigers' rotation (Robertson) for the Yanks to face.

2007-08-09 13:56:04
42.   Shaun P
EDSP pitched two innings again and got his first Dodger win today. Good for him.
2007-08-09 13:56:53
43.   Vandelay Industries
37

Actually, he shouldn't have a choice in the matter.

2007-08-09 14:04:12
44.   yankz
43 What are you talking about? What I meant was, I wish Cano was motivated to take extra BP like Melky is. He's not, he has to be talked into it apparently.
2007-08-09 14:05:23
45.   Raf
On another topic, did Chipper Jones say anything out of line? I caught some of the ESPN interview yesterday, and he didn't say anything that I would deem offensive to Rodriguez.

Anyone else see the interview, or read the article stemming from the interview? The reaction at waswatching is a lot different from what I expected/anticipated.

To those who have no idea as to what I'm talking about, the gist of it is that Jones said if/when Rodriguez approaches/breaks the record, that he'll have some questions to answer due to the "steroid era" he is playing in.

2007-08-09 14:10:18
46.   yankz
45 I thought it was weird that he made Canseco sound way more credible than he really is. A simple "I don't know anything about it, so I'm not going to comment" would've worked best, IMO.
2007-08-09 14:13:38
47.   Vandelay Industries
45

Right, he's young and shouldn't have to be talked into it. As a young player he should be taken aside by some veteran and told what he is expected to do.

2007-08-09 14:13:51
48.   Raf
46 But it can reasonably be argued that all this started because of what Canseco said, right? Had it been said before Canseco's first book, fine. But after being proved "right," (at the very least in the eyes of the public) it would be difficult to completely dismiss Canseco now.
2007-08-09 14:19:45
49.   rilkefan
28 I use firefox, and when loading/refreshing I have to do a lot of scrolling to reach the bottom of the comments or the relevant point of conversation. I figured it was the length of the right sidebar. I complained about the problem a while ago at the time of the last page redesign, but oh well. During games it makes it difficult to keep up or comment in phase, but I'm supposedly working then anyway so I guess it's just as well.
2007-08-09 14:19:54
50.   Vandelay Industries
48

Well who knows, right? But I wouldn't say in the eyes of the public. I think Canseco was right about the players he named. One dissapeared, and one tested positive.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-08-09 14:20:51
51.   yankz
46 You know, I reread the original article, and that, combined with the update Was Watching has, is kind of making me agree with you. I still think what I said would've been best, but I guess this is the era.
2007-08-09 14:23:16
52.   rilkefan
44 - why aren't they taking extra dextra bp? Or extra dextra double-secret super bp?

Why don't we insist that all batters live in trailers designed to double as batting cages like that guy written up in the NYT a while ago?

2007-08-09 14:23:21
53.   Shaun P
48 As far as I'm concerned, Jose Canseco's credibility remains something close to zero, and so I wish Chipper had said, "C'mon guys, you're kidding, right? Jose is cuckoo, and A-Rod has never failed a test for anything, and he sure has not grown to gargantuan size compared to a few years ago."

But he didn't, so oh well. I don't think he said anything wrong, other than to lend any credence to the ramblings of Jose Canseco. Shoot, Ryan Howard got steroid questions last year, and he's played his entire professional career (majors and minors) under testing. Someone is always going to be compelled to ask, which is more a reflection of the press than anything else, IMHO.

2007-08-09 14:25:33
54.   Shaun P
48 Oh, and the disconnect between what Chipper said and the headlines of the articles is not surprising given the rags involved.
2007-08-09 14:30:29
55.   yankz
52 Um, I have no freaking clue what you mean. I'll hazard a guess that you don't think players should have to take extra dextra BP?

Is it that wrong to hope that your young stud, who was struggling mightily, practice a little harder? When you know how fantastic of a hitter he can be?

I mean, look what happened. He took extra BP with Melky, and now he's hitting like an MVP.

2007-08-09 14:32:04
56.   yankz
And it wasn't even "CANO MUST TAKE EXTRA BP!!!!" It was, "I wish Cano was self-motivated to work his ass off, instead of having to be bullied into it by Melky."

The quote I was referring to:

" Cabrera, who has worked hard to improve his English and now has confidence to engage reporters, said he will often be the thorn in Robinson Cano's side, urging the Yankees' other notable Baby Bomber to walk the concrete corridor and join Long in the Yankee Stadium batting cages.

Perhaps Cabrera should be credited with an assist for Cano securing AL Player of the Week honors twice in the last three award cycles. "

It doesn't bother anyone else that Cano needs a thorn in his side?

2007-08-09 14:34:34
57.   Vandelay Industries
53

With all due respect, Jose Canseco may be a little loopy, but I wouldn't say his credibility on this is close to zero. In fact, he's a whole lot more credible than any curent player, Bud Selig, or the media and beat writers.

I don't think it should simply be assumed that Alex Rodriguez is beyond reproach. This whole "he didn't grow" stuff is garbage. Anyone who knows how these PED's work understands that growth is but one indicator, and not in all cases. Look at the guys who have been caught. Very few of them grew to any noticable degree. Palmiero some huge Outside Tackle? Do Tour de France riders look like Barry Bonds. Steroids don't make you grow on your own. It's not majic. Differences in workouts will provide different physical results.

2007-08-09 14:36:33
58.   yankz
Pete has a post up relevant to everything we're talking about. I'm glad the younger Yanks have A-Rod to look up to.
2007-08-09 14:36:38
59.   Raf
53 I don't put much stock in what Canseco says either. But over the past few years, I've had people who normally don't ask about baseball, ask me for more information about the steroids issue in MLB.

When he first came forth, I thought he may be on to something, but I didn't think it was a big deal. If people were roiding up, it was legal in the eyes of MLB, so there wasn't any problem. Understand that I've read Ball Four, and I also remember the drug problem that MLB had during the 80's (Doc & Darryl in our own backyard), so I was pretty jaded by the "news" that 80% of MLB'ers were using.

I had no idea this would become as big as it has. And since Canseco was the one who "broke" the story (AP Reporter Steve Wilstein, I haven't forgotten about you, but Canseco's going to be the one who gets the credit), he has a little bit of credibility. Had his first book been a flop, you wouldn't be hearing about this one.

2007-08-09 14:40:19
60.   rilkefan
55 Extra dextra bp is just extra bp when you crank up plain pb to extra. You know, like those amps that go up to 11.

That's what's keeping this team from reaching 7 RS/game - not enough extra dextra bp. And if we make Cano live in one of those batting-cage homes, surely he'll make Barry Bonds look like Tony Womack.

2007-08-09 14:46:33
61.   yankz
60 OK, now I have to think you're being sarcastic.

Maybe you haven't been around all season, but the Yankees have not been tearing the cover off the ball all year. Their mean R/G is skewed by their recent explosion. And Cano has not been a good hitter all year.

Read my comment again. Cano sucked. Cano was pressured into extra BP. Cano took off.

Now eliminate the middle man. Maybe Cano takes off earlier, maybe not. Either way, I don't think there should be a middle man. Perhaps I'm spoiled by Jeter and A-Rod, but I think it's reasonable to hope that they've rubbed off on Cano.

Did you read 56 ?

As an aside, is anyone else having trouble selecting games on B-R's gamelogs? You know, when it turns blue and gives you the stats for the highlighted period of time.

2007-08-09 14:48:44
62.   yankz
Never mind, I figured it out.

Cano in his first 54 games (1/3 of the season): .272/.315/.417/.732.

2007-08-09 14:48:59
63.   rilkefan
56 Either the team ought to assign more bp, perhaps dependent on injury status or age, or not. I'm fine with Cano doing the work the team asks him to do; I'm fine with Melky convincing him to do more; I'm not ready to look at small-sample fluctuations or time correlations and stress about it.
2007-08-09 14:51:29
64.   rilkefan
62 What about last year? As I recall, Cano started slowly, then became a terror, with no magic extra bp involved as far as I know.
2007-08-09 14:55:07
65.   ric
Oh my!
http://tinyurl.com/2nd5ah
2007-08-09 14:59:08
66.   yankz
64 Who cares? Did you even read the article? Cano, despite sucking, had to be pressured into working his ass off. I think that's a shame.

Maybe you're content with him waiting for the weather to change. I don't think it's unfair to expect him to put in at least as much effort as Melky- without having to be pressured into it.

Who knows, I might be reading too much into it.

2007-08-09 15:00:26
67.   yankz
65 Read the 4th comment, then proceed to age twenty years (to 33).
2007-08-09 15:00:40
68.   yankz
4th comment on that oh so hilarious site you posted, I mean.
2007-08-09 15:01:34
69.   Vandelay Industries
65

That's silly, and I certainly hope it isn't true. I don't mind the coverage though. It's become an epidemic here in Los Angeles (not sure about the situation in NYC), although no one wants to talk about it, and I guess any public exposure to how fast the spreading has become is good for those who aren't aware of how serious an issue it is. I have certainly changed my dating habits as a result.

Clemens out five games. Just heard the news.

2007-08-09 15:24:17
70.   rilkefan
66 "64 Who cares?"

Well, it demolishes an important claim in your argument. You're right though, who cares.

"I don't think it's unfair to expect him to put in at least as much effort as Melky- without having to be pressured into it."

If the team doesn't ask him to?

You can only logically make this argument if you demand that every player work himself to death. As it stands, I'm sure Cano works hard - harder than I do; and while I applaud e.g. A-Rod's dedication to trying to perfect himself, I'm just not going to stress about Cano.

2007-08-09 16:15:15
71.   markp
According to Larry Bowa-a guy who doesn't mince words-Cano is one of the hardest working guys on the team. I'll take his word for it.
2007-08-09 16:53:23
72.   OldYanksFan
Melky mentioned about losing weight. We know both Posada and ARod remarked that they felt and performed better as 'slimmer' players.

My Ex is a nutritionist, and some years ago, one of her patients was Yankee Bob Tewksbury. She told me about the food spreads (that Bob told her) the Yankees laid out. Her only conclusion was that the caterer must have been on the Red Sox payroll.

Bottom line was that the spread was one that was designed to kill someone slowly, tended to make them sick on airplanes, and had all kinds of other negative side effects. A parent might be arrested for feeding their children what the team was fed on a daily basis.

My guess is the food is different now, but I am still stunned that a player's weight is not a prime concern of the team. I have been thin and fat my entire life, ending now unfortunately at being fat. Not to be rude, but anyone who is overweight and tells you it does not efect their performance, is lying.

The Yankees pay these guys pretty well to play. Why weight and programs like yoga, nutrition education many other practices are not instituted at a team level is beyond me.

2007-08-09 16:56:55
73.   JL25and3
6 , 7 Don't get me wrong. Obviously, over the course of his career, Brower hasn't been a good pitcher. Nor is he likely to be over any sort of future long haul.

But with few exceptions - Rivera, Hoffman - relievers are inconsistent from year to year. Each season is a small sample size for them. so in the same way that every BUC is said to have one really good year in him, relievers are likely to have a good streak in there somewhere.

Brower has the advantage of being able to pitch more than one inning, which is something the Yankees need. That was part of how their bullpen got so burnt early in the year - the pitchers were getting knocked out early, and it took 4 relievers to get through every game.

Britton and Edwar are going to be better pitchers than Villone and Brower, no question. But if you releast V&B, you're back to a bullpen full of one-inning pitchers - and, frankly, the starters haven't been all that reliable lately. I want at least one guy, even two, who can eat up some middle innings and (maybe) keep the game in hand. That's it; it's not a job for a genuinely good pitcher, just a serviceable grinder.

So as I said, I'd give Brower one more shot - just one. If he can get a little more oomph on his fastball, the Yankees may be able to get a few decent weeks out of him. If not, DFA him, end of story.

But I think that releasing both him and Villone would be a mistake.

2007-08-09 17:00:10
74.   JL25and3
66 It would be great if Cano was as consistently self-motivated as Cabrera is. But apparently he's not. Like a lot of us, Cano may do better with a little kick in the ass from time to time. If he's got a good friend who can help him with that, that's a good thing.

And I can certainly relate to needing a little push now and again. Cano's no more perfect than a lot of us.

2007-08-09 17:13:03
75.   Vandelay Industries
Tejada hits a GS to take the lead 5-4 in Baltimore, then poof.......rain delay.
2007-08-09 17:15:39
76.   Vandelay Industries
73

I actually thought they should have DFA'd Villone and kept Myers. Not only had he been more effective, I think it is a good idea to keep one guy with a funky delivery in your bullpen, expecially when you are facing younger teams who may not have much experience with his delivery.

2007-08-09 17:38:25
77.   OldYanksFan
65 The Jeter 'thing' is finding it's way across the internet. One site questions what fans at Fenway will chant when Jetes comes to bat. Man, what fun to be famous. I wonder how much coverage this will get.

Well, at least I'm getting to see some nice pics of Jessica Alba. What a babe!

2007-08-09 17:43:06
78.   OldYanksFan
http://sdp04.wordpress.com/
For 'TRUE' Sports fans, I call your attention to the 2nd item, 1st video on the page.
2007-08-09 17:45:11
79.   RIYank
Wow, the Mariners tied it, then in the bottom of the 4th Horacio Ramirez struck out the side on twelve pitches.

Who are these guys?

2007-08-09 17:55:33
80.   Vandelay Industries
White Sox up 2-0 in Chicago, bottom third, no outs.
2007-08-09 18:04:09
81.   Vandelay Industries
77

I do think it is interesting that the "source" that "broke" the story also assumes Jeter had sex with all three of the other celebrities cited. Personally I hope he did, as I have a feeling that Carey is a dirty dirty girl, but they shouldn't jump to that conclusion either. I do however think it is better to be a "serial dater" as he is called, than to get married and screw everything you can get your hands on on the road like so many players in the league.

I don't think the story has legs. I can see the hyberbole already: "would you get in the ring with Mike Tyson for $1,000,000?" "would you have have sex with Jessica Biel if you knew you would get Herpes?" NY Frat boys need something to argue about after all.

2007-08-09 18:23:21
82.   RIYank
The Seattle game got out of hand fast in the sixth: it's 10-5 and they're still batting...

Who are those guys?

2007-08-09 18:38:37
83.   Vandelay Industries
The Cleveland game is quite out if hand as well. 7-3 top fifth. Well, they aren't going to just give us the Wild Card now are they?

This just in: Seattle is better than most people think.

2007-08-09 19:01:43
84.   RIYank
83 I might be one of those 'most people'. I think they're a worse team than the A's, but they've been lucky.
2007-08-09 19:20:47
85.   Vandelay Industries
84

You es loco my friend.

2007-08-09 19:29:37
86.   RIYank
85 Yeah, maybe. They're handing it to the O's tonight.

But look at their Pythagorean record.

2007-08-09 19:30:02
87.   pistolpete
Seattle has the bases juiced with no outs and a 3-run lead already in the 9th.

Ugh.

2007-08-09 19:38:56
88.   RIYank
87 You can breathe easier. They don't have the bases loaded anymore.

The Orioles DH (Gibbons) has an OPS of .623. I've been kind of embarrassed about Damon, but man, that's mind-boggling. .623! They could pick up Miguel Cairo as an upgrade!

2007-08-09 19:40:24
89.   Vandelay Industries
86

I know, but I think Seattle is tricky. If Felix can pitch well, and they get the same good showing from middle relief, Putz stays solid, and Beltre et al. get hot, I wouldn't count them out. I actually think that if the Yankees don't win the WC, the Mariners will, not the Indians.

2007-08-09 19:45:11
90.   3rd gen yankee fan
oh

my

god

I just saw the seattle box score.

2007-08-09 19:47:18
91.   Shaun P
I'd really, really like to see the M's get to the playoffs by winning the West, because their starting pitching is awful. Its King Felix (when he's on) and a lot of crap. Jeff Weaver? Jarrod Washburn? Horacio Ramirez? Miguel Batista? Yes please, let the Yanks' offense face those guys in a 5 or 7 game series. The Cardinals' starting staff last year wasn't that bad.

Cleveland at least has more than one good starting pitcher. Ditto the Angels and (in theory at least) Detroit.

2007-08-09 19:48:21
92.   RIYank
89 Hm, I think Detroit is the main competition.

Whoa. With two out, bases loaded in the ninth, the Orioles bring in Kurt Birkins in relief! WHIP over 2, ERA over 10. Naturally, he retires Ibanez. Now that's what I call a closer.

2007-08-09 19:48:34
93.   3rd gen yankee fan
90 nvm, the yahoo box score is all screwed up. It says they scored 12 in the 9th!
2007-08-09 19:52:38
94.   Vandelay Industries
Man, it sure would be nice had we won just a handful of those close games in May and June. UGH!
2007-08-09 19:52:42
95.   RIYank
93 I was wondering why you were so excited.

I tried to follow the end of the Tigers game today, and Gameday, the ESPN thing, and the CBS thing all had different ridiculous problems. One said the score was 1-0 but also said the D-Rays had scored seven runs in the first inning. One (Gameday) was stuck on Carl Crawford's at-bat. And the third I can't remember.

2007-08-09 19:56:28
96.   Vandelay Industries
The Cubbies are up big. Going to pull within .5 of the Brew Crew. Go Lou Go!
2007-08-09 20:05:22
97.   JL25and3
76 I'd tend to agree. Unfortunately, I think they kept looking at Myers as a LOOGY, because that's what his delivery was supposed to make him. But if they'd thought of him as the guy I described above - a merely competent reliever who could give you a couple of innings - he's not so bad, and probably better than Villone. In fact, being effective against righties would be a good thing. (Besides, I think his lefty-righty splits might have evened out.)
2007-08-09 20:05:23
98.   RIYank
Did everyone see that Ken Tremendous (from firejoemorgan) has an article in SI? Very funny, too.

For a Bostonian, I mean.

2007-08-09 20:15:24
99.   JL25and3
85 As I see it, the Mariners' bullpen has been tremendous, the offense is mezzo-mezzo and the starting pitching is así-así. I can't get excited about that.
2007-08-09 20:29:32
100.   3rd gen yankee fan
96 The Cubbies are like a very sexy woman who will always lead you on and break your heart.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-08-09 21:46:27
101.   Mike T
I didn't see it mentioned on here yet, so I'll throw it out there that Clemens got suspended five games for retaliating on Alex Rios the other day.
2007-08-10 00:52:16
102.   Vandelay Industries
100 But you have fun along the way.

97 I agree. It is a bit punctiliuos to over-analyze the Villone vs. Myers situation given (I eat my words) how aggressive and competent Brian Cashman has been in putting the bullpen and bench in a position to compete with any team out there. However, as you said, if you just want a guy to get outs, Mike Myers is a better option in several ways. I don't mean to channel Tommy Lasorda, but righty or lefty, I don't care, so long as opposing players are making outs.

Myers actually said, "I didn't do the job they brought me here to do," meaning he wasn't getting lefties out. But he was giving up fewer runs than Villone, and no one else seemed to be able to get anyone out.

2007-08-10 03:46:14
103.   TokyoTom
99 and 85 Don't look now, but the Mariners are one game ahead of the Yankees in the Wild Card race. They just swept Baltimore and have won 7 of their last 10. They also have the best pure hitter (overall player?) in baseball, who happens to be on fire. One change that has helped them is the exit of Hargrove and the emergence of John McLaren as a leader. Positive evidence of his impact is his willingness to bench the god-awful Sexson and shuffling the order so that there's someone near the top (Vidro) to drive in Ichiro. Expect McLaren to give rookie phenom Adam Jones plenty of playing time as well.

Hargrove was simply clueless.

The starting pitching is still full of question marks, which makes the first 5 innings for the Mariners, kind of like the Yankees in innings 6-8.

I'm hoping the Yanks catch the Red Sox, because our WC chances don't look so good right now.

2007-08-10 05:05:43
104.   monkeypants
103

"They also have the best pure hitter (overall player?) in baseball..."

Surely you are not serious.

2007-08-10 05:36:14
105.   JL25and3
104 I think he is. And stop calling him Shirley.
2007-08-10 05:38:09
106.   ChrisS
104 I think he is serious, and don't call me Shirley.

I got into a heated argument with some of the folks at USS Mariner years ago that Ichiro wasn't much better than Chuck Knoblauch, and his best 3-4 years weren't any better than Chuck's best 3-4 , and in most cases Chuck out performed Ichiro except for BA. The only major difference between the two is that Chuck completely and utterly collapsed as a player after his age 30 season. But Chuck was never a mythical Japanese superstar with an MVP trophy.

If I remember correctly, they dismissed my claim because Ichiro could hit 40 HR if he wanted to and had great intangibles.

Player A:
.341/.448/.571 142OPS+ 140 R 98 BB 74 K 13 HR 72 RBI 45 SB

Player B:
.372/.414/.455 135 OPS+ 101 R 49 BB 63 K 8 HR 60 RBI 36 SB

2007-08-10 05:43:08
107.   RIYank
103 "I'm hoping the Yanks catch the Red Sox, because our WC chances don't look so good right now."

You mean you think we might catch the Red Sox but finish behind the Mariners???

The Sox have scored 589 runs; the M's have scored 557. The Sox have given up 460 runs; the Mariners have given up 544. So Boston's offense is significantly better, and their defense is much better.

I think we all know that Seattle is ahead in the WC, and sure, their excellent bullpen helps them play over their Pythagorean record. But it's hard to believe they'll play much over .500 the rest of the way.

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