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The Detroit Tigers
2007-08-16 12:38
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

This is it. The make-or-break part of the Yankees' season has arrived. The team's next fourteen games all come against playoff contenders, six against the division leading Angels and Red Sox and, starting tonight, a whopping eight games against the Tigers, who are currently tied with the Indians atop the Central. After that, the Yanks have just three in Boston, three at home against the Wild Card-leading Mariners amid 21 more games against the cupcakes (though that 21 does include six more matches with Baltimore). Two weeks from tonight the Yankees will either be heading toward the playoffs or reeling from a harsh dose of reality.

The good news is that they've played contenders well since flipping the switch in July, going 5-1 against the Indians and Angels with an addition 3-1 against the pretending Twins. The Tigers, meanwhile, have been heading in the other direction.

The Detroit Tigers' high water mark came at the conclusion of a three-game sweep of the Twins in Minnesota on July 19 when they were 21 games over .500 and held a two-games lead over the Indians in the AL Central. Detroit hasn't won a single series since then and counts among their loses two of three at home to the Royals in which their only win came in extra innings, six of eight to the White Sox, four of seven to the A's, and a four-game split at home against the Devil Rays. In total, the Tigers have gone 9-18 since leaving Minnesota and have fallen into a tie with the similarly slumping Indians atop the Central and a game behind the Yankees in the Wild Card race.

Whereas the Indians problem of late has been scoring runs, the Tigers' problem has been preventing them. Over those last 27 games, Detroit has allowed 6.70 runs per game, this despite 21 of those contests occurring in the typically pitcher-friendly Comerica Park and the even more pitcher-friendly Oakland McAfee Coliseum. Curiously, Comerica has been and oddly neutral park this season, and the Tigers have been better at preventing runs on the road, where they've allowed 4.79 runs per game as opposed to 5.52 runs per game at home. As a result, they've been a much stronger road team, but that hasn't held true over the last 27 games, as the Tigers have been equally terrible at home (5-9, 6.86 R/G allowed) and on the road (4-9, 6.53 R/G allowed).

The reason for the Tigers' pitching struggles throughout the season has been injuries. Ace set-up man Joel Zumaya hasn't pitched since May 1 following surgery on the middle finger on his throwing hand (he's due back soon, but not for this series). Kenny Rogers, who was a huge part of their pennant-winning season last year, had offseason shoulder surgery and was active for just about a month beginning in late June before landing back on the DL with elbow inflammation after posting a 9.98 ERA in the last three of his six starts. Andrew Miller, the team's top pitching prospect and 2006 draftee who was promoted to fill the rotation spot vacated when the struggling Mike Maroth was traded to St. Louis, strained a hamstring in his August 3 start against the White Sox and landed on the DL. Filling in for those three are 33-year-old journeyman Tim Byrdak, who didn't see major league action from 2001 to 2004 and had his own DL stint in July due to elbow tendonitis, journeyman Chad Durbin, who last started in the majors in 2004, and rookie Jair Jurrjens, who made his major league debut in a loss to the Indians last night.

Further complicating the issue, remaining starters Nate Robertson and Jeremy Bonderman have underperformed. Bonderman was expected to have a break-out season, but has been merely average, spending some time on the DL himself in May due to a blister, and posting a 9.20 ERA over his five starts since that Minnesota series. Robertson pitched over his head last year, but has gone too far in the other direction this season and was actually DLed in June due to what was termed a "tired arm." Similar things can be said about incumbent set-up men Fernando Rodney, who was awful earlier in the season and spent all of July on the DL with shoulder and elbow tendonitis, and Jason Grilli, who's been overused as a result of the injuries to Zumaya and Rodney and has seen his performance suffer as a result.

The Tigers can't even count on 2006 Rookie of the Year and current staff ace Justin Verlander to hold the wolves at bay. Verlander, who starts tonight, has a 5.14 ERA over his last eight starts despite solid peripherals, has lasted more that six innings in only one of his last five starts, and has turned in quality starts in just two of his last six and three of those last eight. To all of that you can add the flu, which has been going around the Tiger clubhouse of late and could impact Verlander's performance tonight.

On the flip side, the Tiger offense is second only to the Yankees in runs per game this season. The key difference being that, unlike the Yankees, the Tigers have some soft spots in their batting order, specifically third baseman Brandon Inge (.239/.316/.391), 35-year-old catcher Ivan Rodriguez (.278/.288/.426), and left fielder Craig Monroe (.222/.264/.373). Monroe has been so bad, in fact, that he appears to be losing his job to the recently reactivated Marcus Thames, starting only when Thames shifts to first base to spell Sean Casey against lefties.

At the same time, the tough spots in the Tiger order are very, very tough. Gary Sheffield, Curtis Granderson, Carlos Guillen, Placido Polanco, and especially Magglio Ordoñez are all having outstanding seasons. Sheffield's season is a dead ringer for his two healthy seasons in New York except he's been far more active on the bases, stealing 18 of 22, and even harder to strike out. Granderson appears to have made the leap at age 26. The most remarkable thing about his season isn't necessarily his 18 triples, but the fact that 12 of them have come on the road. Polanco is enjoying a career year with a performance that's a dead ringer for what he did over the remainder of 2005 after being acquired from the Phillies. Guillen is merely playing to his usual high standard. Finally, Ordoñez is a legitimate challenger to Alex Rodriguez's MVP hopes, matching Rodriguez in the cumulative total-performance stat VORP despite fewer plate appearances. In third place in the AL: Jorge Posada. In fact, the Yankees and Tigers combine to employ ten of the top 22 VORP totals in the American League. The five Tigers are the men just discussed. The three Yankees after Rodriguez and Posada are Jeter, Matsui, and Cano.

The man who will try to tame those Tiger bats tonight will be Mike Mussina. Moose has been on a roll of late, posting a 2.84 ERA over his last four starts, all wins. He's not walked a batter in his last 22 innings pitched. He will, however, have to cope with Jason Giambi at first base tonight, as G'Bombi will get the start at first for the first time since May 3. Hideki Matsui will DH, Johnny Damon's in left, and the Yankee lineup is utterly seamless. Wow.

Detroit Tigers

2007 Record: 2007 Pythagorean Record:

Manager: Jim Leyland
General Manager: Dave Dombrowski

Home Ballpark (2007 Park Factors): Comerica Park (99/99)

Who's Replacing Whom?

Gary Sheffield replaces Dmitri Young, a chunk of Marcus Thames' playing time, and a smidge of Craig Monroe's
Sean Casey replaces Chris Shelton (minors)
Mike Rabelo replaces Vance Wilson (DL)
Ryan Raburn replaces Alexis Gomez
Chad Durbin replaces Kenny Rogers (DL)
Jair Jurrens replaces Andrew Miller (DL), who replaced Mike Maroth, who took over the starts of Wilfredo Ledezma and Zach Miner, the last of whom is still in the bullpen
Tim Byrdak replaces Joel Zumaya (DL)
Bobby Seay replaces Jamie Walker
Aquilino Lopez replaces Roman Colon and Chris Spurling

25-man Roster

1B - Sean Casey (L)
2B - Placido Polanco (R)
SS - Carlos Guillen (S)
3B - Brandon Inge (R)
C - Ivan Rodriguez (R)
RF - Magglio Ordoñez (R)
CF - Curtis Granderson (L)
LF - Marcus Thames (R)
DH - Gary Sheffield (R)

Bench:

R - Craig Monroe (OF)
R - Omar Infante (IF)
R - Ryan Raburn (OF)
S - Mike Rabelo (C)

Rotation:

R - Justin Verlander
L - Nate Robertson
R - Chad Durbin
R - Jeremy Bonderman
R - Jair Jurrjens

Bullpen:

R - Todd Jones
R - Fernando Rodney
R - Jason Grilli
L - Bobby Seay
L - Tim Byrdak
R - Zach Miner
R - Aquilino Lopez

15-day DL: R - Joel Zumaya, L - Andrew Miller, L - Kenny Rogers
60-day DL: R - Vance Wilson (C), S - Tony Giarratano (IF), L - Edward Campusano
Restricted List: S - Neifi Perez (IF)

Typical Lineup:

L - Curtis Granderson (CF)
R - Placido Polanco (2B)
R - Gary Sheffield (DH)
R - Magglio Ordoñez (RF)
S - Carlos Guillen (SS)
R - Ivan Rodriguez (C)
L - Sean Casey (1B)
R - Marcus Thames (LF)
R - Brandon Inge (3B)

Comments (146)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-08-16 15:01:04
1.   yankz
GIVE EM HELL, BOYS
2007-08-16 15:13:49
2.   cult of basebaal
jair jurrjens

i bet JL's already counting the yankees out of the team-wide-best-baseball-name contest like a cheese-eating-surrender-monkey because of that one ...

2007-08-16 15:41:52
3.   Shaun P
2 I was just looking the roster over on the sidebar to see if there were any "good" names I'd forgotten when I saw Cliff has already added Brackman to the 40-man listing. Bravo! You'll also want to take Kevin Reese off the 40 man, and move Jose Veras on (and off the 60 day DL), as Reese was DFA'd to make room for Veras (according to River Ave Blues). I didn't find that out until I went there today to read more about the draft picks who signed.
2007-08-16 15:56:58
4.   Cliff Corcoran
3 Thanks for the heads up, Shaun. I knew Veras was pitching in the minors, but didn't know if it was a rehab assignment (meaning he was still on the 60-day) or what.

2 Who's JL?

2007-08-16 16:02:24
5.   Cliff Corcoran
3 Curiously, the official site has 40 men on the 40-man, including Brackman, but also including Basak who was DFAed to make room for Brackman. It also has Veras still on the 60-day, but does not list Reese. Very confusing. Of course, the official site listed Hughes on the 40-man for most of last season, despite the fact that he wasn't added until being brought up this season.
2007-08-16 16:15:07
6.   bartap74
Nice to see Sheffield get the booing he so richly deserved. I just hope he doesn't make us pay for it.
2007-08-16 16:17:45
7.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Great, an error. What's up with the fielding lately?

Let's hope Moose doesn't crap the bed over this.

2007-08-16 16:18:35
8.   bartap74
Not looking like the good Moose so far.
2007-08-16 16:19:44
9.   Chyll Will
4 JL --> JL25and3...
2007-08-16 16:21:19
10.   bartap74
FUCK.

This does not bode well.

2007-08-16 16:22:03
11.   Zack
I hate Moose
2007-08-16 16:22:57
12.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Well, at least the pitching matchups favor us the next 3.

What is it w/ Mose and errors? He simply can't deal with bad fielding behind him.

2007-08-16 16:23:08
13.   glennrwordman
8 I believe that is the smell of one bed being be-shi**ed.
2007-08-16 16:23:25
14.   glennrwordman
I meant 7
2007-08-16 16:24:28
15.   randym77
Well, that was a black hole with dire gravitational powers of suckage.
2007-08-16 16:25:07
16.   Zack
Well, a little late to settle down there Moose...
2007-08-16 16:26:53
17.   Zack
Alright, A-Rod grand slam, lets go
2007-08-16 16:27:09
18.   OldYanksFan
It ain't near over. This team made the A's look like the '27 Yankees. We're just going to have to work a little higher.
2007-08-16 16:28:34
19.   bob34957
Time to make a statement at the bottom of the first!!!!
2007-08-16 16:31:31
20.   randym77
Why does Gameday say "in play, outs" if Jeter singled?
2007-08-16 16:32:34
21.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
18 Unfortunately, Verlander won the game he pitched in that series. 2 er over 6ip.
2007-08-16 16:34:57
22.   rufuswashere
Was the E5 a tough play?
2007-08-16 16:36:57
23.   Zack
Uh oh, he threw near Hideki's head, now hes gonna go into a prolonged slump...
2007-08-16 16:38:47
24.   bob34957
Matsuiiiiiiiii!!!!!!
2007-08-16 16:40:19
25.   hensley
Wow, that fan totally saved the inning on Matsui's pop-up in the stands. Tipped it right out of the glove.
2007-08-16 16:42:17
26.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Ok, 30 pitches for Verlander. And we got 1 back.

Now if Moose can just hold them until we get into their Z-less pen . . .

2007-08-16 16:45:48
27.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Sigh.
2007-08-16 16:46:06
28.   seamus
moose needs to throw strikes here. And less pitches would be nice.
2007-08-16 16:46:40
29.   OldYanksFan
SHIT!
2007-08-16 16:46:47
30.   Zack
Have I mentioned I hate Moose...
2007-08-16 16:46:54
31.   OldYanksFan
What a meatball
2007-08-16 16:47:01
32.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Bullpen please.
2007-08-16 16:47:09
33.   Zack
Sooo, who's the long man today? Villone?
2007-08-16 16:47:12
34.   bartap74
I've always liked Mussina, but I'm starting to think that he may be done.
2007-08-16 16:47:36
35.   seamus
looks like moose just doesn't have it tonight.
2007-08-16 16:47:38
36.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Maybe Moose thinks it's the playoffs and that's why he's pitching so crappy?
2007-08-16 16:48:09
37.   seamus
34 he had four good starts before this. He isn't as good as he once was, but how would he now be "done"?
2007-08-16 16:51:01
38.   OldYanksFan
While he has maintained his average, it APPEARS to me that Jetes is not swinging the bat well. Like last inning, he magically gets average groundballs through the infield.

The other night, he gets the winning RBI on a check swing on a terrible pitch.

Can anyone remember his last liedrive double into the LF gap. He's hardly ever getting around on the ball. Anyone else see this?

Man... ARod's glove has gone limp.

2007-08-16 16:53:25
39.   Jim Dean
Dear all,

I'm really sorry to disrupt the Yankees discussion with somber news. I just wanted to let you know that Jim passed away on July 27th in the middle of the game with his laptop open to this site. I was upstairs and when I came down, I thought he had fallen asleep. It was an undetected heart defect that led to massive heart failure.

Thank you to all of you for providing a nice distraction for Jim. He loved the Yankees and I know he really enjoyed chatting with you all. For me, it's nice to read his old writings here and remeber his argumentative side. I really miss him.

Kate Dean

2007-08-16 17:03:27
40.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
Requiem æternam dona eis, Domine, et lux perpetua luceat eis.
2007-08-16 17:08:37
41.   seamus
39 oh my. My condolonces to you and your family. Jim's contributions will be missed.
2007-08-16 17:08:59
42.   Simone
Kate, my sympathies to you and your family. Rest in peace, Jim.
2007-08-16 17:13:59
43.   OldYanksFan
Dear Kate,
You have stunned the Banter into silence.
You might know that Jim's intelligence and strong point of views made him a bit famous here, and he left an impression on all of us.
I really don't know what to say other then to convey my deepest condolences to you and Jim's family.

I will tell you Jim's biggest gripe here was the Yankee Bench. Someone, magically, in the last 6 weeks, our bench has turned 100% around from possibly the worst in baseball to one of the best.

I can only think Jim put in a good word for us. Again, our most sincere condolences.

2007-08-16 17:16:56
44.   Benjamin Kabak
Jim was a good man around these parts, Kate. My sincere condolences.
2007-08-16 17:21:14
45.   seamus
43 all very true.
2007-08-16 17:22:01
46.   Dan-el
Kate -- my sincerest condolences in what must be an extremely difficult time.
2007-08-16 17:23:11
47.   cult of basebaal
wow ... my sincerest condolences ... jim and didn't always see eye-to-eye on things, but it is a sign of the impact he has had in defining this site this season that i had genuinely missed his presence here the last couple of weeks

my prayers are with you and the family

2007-08-16 17:23:17
48.   3rd gen yankee fan
Kate, thanks for telling us. I'm stunned. We'll miss him a lot. All my best to you.
2007-08-16 17:23:24
49.   spufi2007
A 2-run HR for Jim Dean.

Amazing how our moaning about the Yankees becomes completely meaningless in the scheme of things.

2007-08-16 17:24:36
50.   OldYanksFan
Wow... pretty surreal. The siilence here is deafening. The July 27th game was the quasi-double header with Baltimire, with 2 inning completion of the suspended game.

Scooter's passing was close to all of us, but Jim was right here with us at the time. He was so passionate about the Yankees, I wondered what could keep him away.

Very sad. I do hope he can see our bench now.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-08-16 17:29:06
51.   Shaun P
39 Kate, I am so sorry for your loss. Your husband and I argued quite a bit in these parts, good-naturedly, but I always admired his passion for the Yanks.

He has been, and will continue to be missed. God Bless.

2007-08-16 17:33:25
52.   cult of basebaal
c'mon moose ...hold 'em here
2007-08-16 17:33:57
53.   bartap74
39 My sincere condolences as well. Jim was a strong advocate for the things that he believed in, always willing to duke it out with any number of detractors. I'm sure that extended well beyond baseball.
2007-08-16 17:41:59
54.   OldYanksFan
In the future, I will refer to our bench as the JDMB (Jim Dean Memorial Bench). His last comment, #218, was made at: 2007-07-27 19:32:18, late in our 4-2 loss to Baltimore. I'm weirded out.
2007-08-16 17:42:32
55.   Shaun P
Verlander has 77 pitches already? A long inning here could keep him from coming back out for the 5th.

I can't believe Jim is gone. A bunch of us were just talking about him earlier today.

2007-08-16 17:45:17
56.   bartap74
I just had a strange idea. Is there any way someone could contact the YES broadcast booth and have them send out condolences on the loss of a big Yankee fan?
2007-08-16 17:45:49
57.   Yankee Fan in Chicago
I suspect some of you might have as well, but I went back to the archive for the
game(s) on 7/27 to reread Jim's comments.

Two things stand out. A very spirited, typically, criticism of Sterling, especially his home runs calls, on which Jim was, imo, dead on, and, in what seems to be his last comment, he wondered, given Abreu's abysmal slugging against lefties, whether we could get a rightfielder who could hit lefties.

Shelly Duncan appears to be the answer to that problem, and has already subbed for Bobby at least once, iirc, against tough lefties.

If Sterling gets fired, we really have to begin to fear the power of Dean!

2007-08-16 17:47:23
58.   Shaun P
56 Will Weiss might be able to, if he happens to be reading this. But the way he wrote his last comment in today's "Yankee Panky" thread makes me think he was going to be busy tonight.
2007-08-16 17:48:30
59.   williamnyy23
I logged onto the Banter all ready to vent and then I read the awful and sad news about Jim. Like everyone else, I offer my condolences to the Dean family. I'd also like to think that Jim is now enjoying the Scooter do play by play of tonight's game and not the least bit worried about the Yankees BUC.
2007-08-16 17:50:53
60.   OldYanksFan
57 For anyone interested:
http://bronxbanter.baseballtoaster.com/archives/743436.html#comments
Jim's last night with us.
2007-08-16 17:53:54
61.   Zack
Wow, didn't expect to check back into the Banter and read that. So sorry for your loss, and all of our loss really. I'll miss the banter he provided...
2007-08-16 17:54:48
62.   OldYanksFan
With JD and Jason seeing so little playing time, I wonder how effective they will be the remainder of the season. While I prefer Giambi over JD at DH, I wonder if either of them would be better on an everyday basis over this platoon.

I hate to throw Giambi under the bus, but maybe like today, we should start Jason at 1B until he get's injured, or asks a days off?

2007-08-16 17:57:06
63.   williamnyy23
62 I think that if Giambi plays a lot of 1B, it's not if, but when Giambi gets injured.
2007-08-16 17:57:50
64.   williamnyy23
It looks more and more like Mussina simply is no longer good enough to beat a good team. If the Yankees make the post season, he has to be the odd man out.
2007-08-16 17:58:42
65.   spufi2007
Took a full hour and 1 minute for the bitching to start up again.
2007-08-16 18:03:28
66.   JeremyM
There's no question Moose isn't what he was, but he's been pretty good for the last 6 weeks or so. Hopefully this is just a blip.
2007-08-16 18:06:29
67.   OldYanksFan
Moose is still 'tricky' enough that when he can spot his pitches, he can still be very effective. But when he misses, he gets hit hard.

Looks like it's not worth using Joba tonight to try and stay close?

2007-08-16 18:07:24
68.   bartap74
I think we're in for a Farnsworth sighting.
2007-08-16 18:07:27
69.   williamnyy23
Yankees have swung at a bunch of 3-1 pitches despite being down by a lot...very odd.
2007-08-16 18:10:42
70.   OldYanksFan
Gotta love Farnsy
2007-08-16 18:11:17
71.   Yu-Hsing Chen
god damn, can we not lose 2 in a role becuase of errors? Moose was actually sharper than Verlander today, but that big error and the umps not letting him expanding the zone at all is killing him
2007-08-16 18:13:07
72.   spufi2007
If he loses -- Moose will be 8-8 with a 4.76 ERA.

Couldn't Ian Kennedy do that? Maybe Jack Kennedy?

2007-08-16 18:16:06
73.   Yu-Hsing Chen
looks like we finally figured out how to use Farnsy... now lets score some runs damnit
2007-08-16 18:17:30
74.   Shaun P
65 Life does go on. Jim would probably prefer it that way, right? =)

At least there's no way Verlander comes back out, having thrown 110 pitches already. And the Tigers' bullpen is awful.

2007-08-16 18:19:18
75.   Yu-Hsing Chen
72 1. he go off to a terrible late start, 2. he's actually pitched better than Verlander this game in a lot of ways, but the defense and luck is totally betraying him
2007-08-16 18:20:06
76.   Shaun P
I stand corrected! Maybe Leyland will do us a favor and let Verlander run up a 120+ pitches game, making him likely very ineffective for the next go-round with the Tigers.

You keep taking Giambi!

2007-08-16 18:21:18
77.   Shaun P
OK Robbie, how about a 6 pitch AB?
2007-08-16 18:23:09
78.   Yu-Hsing Chen
I'm not sure if i should alaud Verlander for being able to throw 120 pitches in less than 6 inning while under the flu or question Jim Leyland's apparent faith in him being a total rubber arm.

he was used a ton last year too, time will tell, but i have a bad feeling about his health going foward

2007-08-16 18:24:34
79.   Shaun P
78 You're right, this was risky for Verlander, but Leyland doesn't have a good bullpen to rely on, and the Tigers are in a fight for the Central. IIRC, they usually are good with their pitchers.
2007-08-16 18:27:24
80.   williamnyy23
Winters has been awful all game...unfortunately for Moose, his style wasn't compatible with Winter's awful zone.
2007-08-16 18:28:53
81.   Shaun P
Melky!! C'mon guys, get something going.

80 Its a shame the Yanks can't rig Moose's starts to match up with umps who actually call a proper, consistent strike zone.

2007-08-16 18:29:48
82.   Yu-Hsing Chen
COMMMON SHELLY SPENCER!
2007-08-16 18:34:14
83.   williamnyy23
Not to make an excuse for Moose, but he simply can't survive with an umpire who squeeze the breaking ball, but gives 4 inches off the plate on the fastball.
2007-08-16 18:36:42
84.   Yu-Hsing Chen
ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRAGH
2007-08-16 18:37:11
85.   williamnyy23
Torre got schooled there...the Duncan against a RHP was the weaker matchup. That was a small example of Leyland helping his team move closer to a win.
2007-08-16 18:38:15
86.   Shaun P
83 He shouldn't have to, as such an ump is not doing his job. I can understand why Moose gets so annoyed.
2007-08-16 18:38:33
87.   bobtaco
Villone? Now?

Rest in peace Jim, I can't believe he is gone.

2007-08-16 18:38:50
88.   JeremyM
Seriously, Farnsworth threw 12 pitches, he can't go another? What is with this clown?
2007-08-16 18:39:43
89.   Shaun P
Ah, Ron Villone. Are you a placeholder for Chris Britton, or will you pitch well tonight?
2007-08-16 18:40:25
90.   OldYanksFan
85 Anybody else on the bench with a better shot at a 3 run HR?
2007-08-16 18:41:32
91.   williamnyy23
I am glad Villone is living his dream. I wonder what Chris Britton's dream is.
2007-08-16 18:41:39
92.   JeremyM
85 I don't mind the move by Torre, Damon's struggles this year are well known.
2007-08-16 18:41:59
93.   Yu-Hsing Chen
why throw anything over the plate against a guy who has less than 10 freakin walks this year?
2007-08-16 18:43:13
94.   Shaun P
90 Nope.

89 Placeholder, I see.

2007-08-16 18:43:47
95.   williamnyy23
90 It was the sixth inning, so I don't think you have to play for a 3-run HR, especially when the matchup doesn't favor it.
2007-08-16 18:44:19
96.   Yu-Hsing Chen
85 he could have pinch hit Betemit for Duncan maybe, but that's burning 2 guys on the bench for one AB. while albeit small in sample size, Shelley Duncan is hitting 292 /.370 /.667 against RHPs anyway.
2007-08-16 18:44:25
97.   Shaun P
Given Farnsworth's effective banishment, if the Yanks will just replace Villone with Britton, the bullpen will become a better place.
2007-08-16 18:51:15
98.   spufi2007
Paging Chris Britton....
2007-08-16 18:53:30
99.   williamnyy23
Another 3-1 swing!!! I just don't get it.
2007-08-16 18:54:42
100.   williamnyy23
That's an awfuL AB by Abreu. He swings at ball four on the 3-1 and then K's meakly. The Yankees approach has been pretty bad for three games now. I think my Colorado effect from the Karstens give away is being realized.
Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-08-16 18:57:11
101.   williamnyy23
Winters sucks.
2007-08-16 18:58:59
102.   bobtaco
What the hell kind of swing was that for Matsui? Bleech.
2007-08-16 18:59:19
103.   JeremyM
Seriously, this is the most bipolar team I've ever seen.
2007-08-16 19:00:44
104.   Max
When you think about how awful our starting pitching has been at times -- with just about every starter having spit the bit in spectacular fashion at some point recently...and this doesn't even take into account the bullpen failures, including Mo --it's amazing that the glass can still be considered half-full being only a game out of the WC.
2007-08-16 19:01:37
105.   Yu-Hsing Chen
tommorrow they'll suddenly put 10 spots on the board for 3 strait game and have awsome pitching at the same time ... meh
2007-08-16 19:09:18
106.   yankz
39 Kate,

Thank you very much for trusting us with that. I can't add anything to 43 , but, as others have stated, Jim Dean was a really valuable member of this board, and we'll all miss his passion. Thanks again.

2007-08-16 19:14:30
107.   williamnyy23
I would love to read Winter's QuesTec readout for this game.
2007-08-16 19:16:15
108.   Shaun P
107 This might be a dumb question, but is Yankee Stadium a QuesTec park?

C'mon Yanks, this is the time to break it open!

2007-08-16 19:16:57
109.   seamus
108 yes. and those bad strike calls are causing yanks to make bad swings.
2007-08-16 19:17:56
110.   yankz
Oh, and REMEMBER CLEVELAND!
2007-08-16 19:18:07
111.   Yu-Hsing Chen
funny, Joe's making all the good moves today(maybe except Villone) but very few of it is working out
2007-08-16 19:18:11
112.   fansince77
It's amazing to me how much one call...just one umpire call can totally change the tenor of an inning and maybe even squelch a comeback oppotunity. That first strike to Melky wasn't anywhere near the zone- would have been the sixth straight ball and could possibly have resulted in a big inning for the Yanks. By calling that a strike- Not even close - it changed the whole inning!
2007-08-16 19:18:31
113.   3rd gen yankee fan
This game makes me want to curse. A lot.
2007-08-16 19:19:55
114.   Yu-Hsing Chen
YS is a questec park, and i'm pretty sure Winter will get some bad feedback this game, not consistent, both ways.
2007-08-16 19:21:25
115.   williamnyy23
Why Vizcaino? Torre is a lost cause.
2007-08-16 19:24:51
116.   williamnyy23
114 I think umpires should have their QuestTec evaluations made public. Players are accountable to their stats, so there is no reason why umpires shouldn't be as well.
2007-08-16 19:30:36
117.   Yu-Hsing Chen
115 Vizcaino BABIP this year is under .250 and his HR/FB is around 5%, both suggest luck... a lot of it. he's getting better stuff wise, but still isn't as good as he's shown lately. if he's a type A FA, the Yankees really should let him walk.
2007-08-16 19:34:14
118.   yankz
I'm remembering Cleveland...
2007-08-16 19:35:20
119.   thelarmis
wow, what a sad week it has been. first Scooter dies. the last coupla days, i have felt like i lost a piece of my childhood and that hurts.

just a coupla hours ago, i'm teaching a drum lesson and i get a text message from a student of mine informing me that the drumming community lost one of our biggest legends today - Max Roach died at 83. for the drumming world, he loomed larger than Rizzuto; this one is more like Lou Gehrig dying, if he had lived a full life. Max was an innovator and along with Kenny "Klook" Clarke, invented Be-Bop drumming. he was also the 1st player to ever play a melodic drum solo and he invented soloing over an ostinato. all of that can be heard in the famous "The Drum Also Waltzes." some of his best work was with Sonny Rollins...

i come home to check the score, to find out we're losing big. carp.

then i scour some comments and see Jim Dean died. wha?! uy yuy yuy. this is terribly saddening. Kate, if you're still reading comments, my heart goes out to you and yours. he was intelligent and passionate. take good care.

on the flip side, a buddy of mine is about to welcome his 2nd child into the world and the yanks still have these 2 weeks to make a statement.

there's too much sadness this week... : (

2007-08-16 19:35:21
120.   yankz
Swinging bunt!
2007-08-16 19:36:51
121.   yankz
Cleveland!

119 Sorry to hear all that, man. Let's hope the Yanks add some good feelings to the mix.

2007-08-16 19:39:00
122.   yankz
Please come back. It would hurt to see a rally get snuffed.
2007-08-16 19:40:23
123.   yankz
Well, that sucked.
2007-08-16 19:41:34
124.   Yu-Hsing Chen
unfucking believable, the Yankes lose 2 strait games due to error (if Hughes made that play at first the Duncan HR woulda been a walk off, if A-rod didn't bobble the ball in the first the Yanks woudla walked off on the Posada hit)
2007-08-16 19:42:01
125.   3rd gen yankee fan
Sucked all around! What a sucky day!!!
2007-08-16 19:42:45
126.   Shaun P
123 Yes it did. The Yanks don't just owe the Scooter a win (or 3), they owe Jim Dean too.
2007-08-16 19:46:11
127.   OldYanksFan
Bad timing. Plenty of hits, plenty of opportunuties. The only time we hit with RISP was the 9th inning.

And ARod is cooling down big time. Dinky ground balls, not too many screaming flys.

2007-08-16 19:51:44
128.   Max
119 Max Roach was one of the true greats in all of music, not just jazz. Along with Phil earlier this week, that makes me very sad.

I still can't really process the news about Jim -- it just seems surreal. Funny, when our roster started improving (better bench, better pitchers) and the team started winning consistently...when Jim disappeared, I swear he willed himself into Cashman's mind. That's how passionately he came across in his arguments online...I never felt he was really gone, even when he disappeared from the comments.

I didn't really see eye to eye with the way he argued certain points over and over, but he was definitely a Yankee fan. My condolences to Kate and his family and friends.

2007-08-16 20:00:22
129.   thelarmis
128 here's an article on losing Max today.

http://tinyurl.com/2rqa2j

i'm very non-confrontational, so i didn't always like jim dean's tone, but i am very passionate, so i was able to understand that side of him. he loved the yankees and was very good w/ numbers. as a drummer and baseball fanatic, i adore numbers. i don't post a lot about 'em here, 'coz so many folks here are on top of everything and know more than i do, but i study stats and as much sabermetrics as i can wrap my little brain around.

i always felt i was one of those jim was 'attacking' when he would say things like he skips over most comments 'coz no one has anything productive to say. i never took it personally. i know my place - on this site and elsewhere. i'm generally doing 17 different things at once, whilst i'm checking the scores and following this site, so i can't scour for #'s very quickly. plus, my little laptop freezes up!

cult of basebaal was recently in atlanta and we had a great hang and talked some about this. he is a wonderful baseball mind! bronx banter really is a true family and it's really great to make honest to god friends from here, like cult. it doesn't matter if it's 1-sentence comments or 3 paragraph stat-filled arguments. we all love the yankees and none of us wants to hear news like the fate of Mr. Dean.

rest in peace, fellow Yankees fanatic

2007-08-16 20:03:06
130.   yankz
129 Amen, and very well said. Post of the year nomination.
2007-08-16 20:11:19
131.   Bama Yankee
Wow, I am stunned to hear the news about Jim Dean. I had a bad feeling that something might have happened. It was not like Jim to be away for so long. Even though a lot of people argued with Jim about several topics here on the Banter no one could argue that Jim had a passion for the Yankees. Things will not be the same around here without him.

The thing that I love most about this site is that it is not only the best place on the net to get Yankee news it is also a place where passionate fans can come together and have spirited discussions. In some ways it is like a family. We share in the good times and bad. We celebrate weddings and births and days like today we all share in the sadness. Jim Dean was part of this family and he will missed.

My prayers go out to Kate and the family. May God bless you all during this difficult time.

2007-08-16 20:23:27
132.   thelarmis
bama - are you anywhere near Montgomery? i'm performing there in 2 weeks...

thankz, yankz. and i always am sure to read all of your commentz! : )

2007-08-16 20:42:52
133.   Max
129 Beautifully said, and thanks for the link to the article about Max...I see the NYT has their obituary up as well. I remember being very partial to "Percussion Bittersweet" with Dolphy and Little (played the LP for many years before it got damaged with our basement flooding). I also fondly remember the Double Quartet stuff with his daughter.

If I can add some levity in the middle of a sad time, thelarmis, you've got me spending serious money this summer. :-) Beefed up my Sun Ra CD collection based on our earlier discussions, and now I'll be remembering Max Roach. I know I shouldn't have waited until this sad news to renew his acquaintance, but at the very least, it will be good to keep his memory alive. There are worse ways to overcome sad times than keeping that master drummer's spirit pulsing through reexperiencing the amazing diversity of his recorded output.

2007-08-16 20:52:07
134.   thelarmis
133 thanks, max! oh, and sorry about your wallet ; ) um, i think i'm about to make you drop some more coin though : O

you need the Dolphy box set!!! up until today (!!!), it was the most expensive purchase i had made on cd's. it's a 9cd box set on Prestige and is essential...

i can't listen to Dolphy every day, but to me, he was the most unique, distinctive, fiery, passionate performer on any instrument in any genre. you can listen to Andrew Hill's (he just died recently, too...) Point of Departure - track 1, all these great soloists, and then BAM!, dolphy plays one - ONE - stinkin' note and you have to drop everything you're doing and stare at the speakers. he's mesmerizing...

similarly, for 20th century classical stuff, it sounds like you have big ears and great taste, so you'd probably dig Krzysztof Penderecki's Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima.

sorry to keep spending your money, but the gift of music is the greatest and at least it's safe! plus, i can write it off ; )

btw, the crazy coin i just dropped was on a 9cd Joe Jackson box set of mini-lp cd's. VERY cool stuff : )

2007-08-16 21:29:24
135.   Mattpat11
I was at this monstrosity.

I don't know how it appeared on TV, but live, I really thought Verlander was horrible. Three balls on everyone and we just couldn't capitalize.

2007-08-16 21:55:58
136.   Mike T
Scooter dies, Jim Dean dies, and the Yanks get their heads handed to them three games in a row. Great week.
2007-08-16 22:03:08
137.   Vandelay Industries
I too want to offer my thoughts and condolences to Kate, and Jim Dean's entire family.
2007-08-16 22:14:11
138.   Vandelay Industries
As for the Yankees, what can you say? I read the usual Moose is "done" posts above, and am about ready to agree. I don't think it is that he doesn't have the stuff to get guys out, he just doesn't have the stones to pitch to good clubs. He is scared to death to throw strike one, and just keeps nibbling and nibbling no matter who is calling balls and strikes. He shouldn't be pitching to Boston, Seattle, Detroit, or even Anaheim. I know Joe would never move the rotation to accomodate such things, but there really is no sense in starting him against clubs with more than one or two big bats in the lineup. Moose isn't done, he just can't get his head out of the game so to speak, and throw strike one without fear, and that makes him a number five at best.

A tough three games to be sure. With Wanng clearly not right, Hughes unable to give lenghth (without mentioning his age), and Moose a head case, we have three of every five games where will likely need to score seven or more runs to win, and when we don't, we will likelly lose. It is even more fruststating when we get an ace off his game like we did tonight, and do nothing with it. As much as we all hate Steve Phillps, he is right on this, if we don't score some runs and win when Clemens and Pettitte give us good outings, and score a ton when the other three are out there, we have little chance of going anywhere this season. We just don't have the pitching to win the games in which our offense is shut down. A game like tonight for instance, with a quality pitcher out there, was winnable. With Moose, Villone and Farnsworth pitching before the seventh, we will lose more often than not.

Here is hoping for a better performance tomorrow.

2007-08-16 22:34:21
139.   Vandelay Industries
107 What they need to do is simply have it removed. There was at least one club, which I cannot seem to recall at this moment, which flatly refused to allow it to be installed. They said no to the request, MLB fought them, and untimately relented. MLB has absolutely no recourse other than to force a club to install it, which could once again land the antitrust exemption in the public eye when the club takes the dispute over whether MLB has such a power to the masses, which MLB does not want. The Umpires Union would most assuredly support a club asserting its right to refuse installation, and the Players Association would likely throw its support behind the team. I don't believe this is a battle MLB would like to fight, and it is only a matter of time before a club simply rips it out.

George would never do such a thing, fighting the powers that be (good little Republican that he is), but it is certainly a thought.

2007-08-16 22:38:39
140.   Start Spreading the News
39 My condolences to the Dean family. Jim's presence will be missed.
2007-08-17 00:57:32
141.   Yu-Hsing Chen
Here we go again with the Moose bashing.

ridiculas , I saw the whole game, and it was far from poorly pitched, he just ran into some terrible luck. first A-rod booted a inning ending double play, then he faces two very tough out , now gased, Guillien poked one out of the short porch, and that was the difference of the game. the rest of the game saw a lot of slappy singles or well done hit and runs that really had little to do with how Moose pitched. not to meantion seeing the ump continue to give nothing off the plate to him while giving the Tigers 3+ inches.

If anything, Verlander pitched much worse this game, he couldn't locate his breaking balls at all, while his fastball was pretty wild too, but that's expected from a guy pitching with the flu, we just didn't capitalize enough (and got robed by some nice plays)

Moose is doing just fine . he's not what he use to be, but he's far from unable to putting up a decent season in the AL.

2007-08-17 05:12:29
142.   Sliced Bread
39

Kate,

I'm very saddened to hear about Jim's passing. My condolences to you and your family.
Jim Dean was a bright and spirited Yankees fan, which made him such a fun and interesting contributer to the Bronx Banter.
He will be missed.

Tip of the Yanks cap to ya, Jim Dean.
Rest in peace.

2007-08-17 05:38:35
143.   rbj
Wow, my deepest condolences Kate. Sorry about Jim's passing -- far too soon. Not only did God need a shortstop and a drummer, he needed a Banterer too.

As for the game, I'm just glad I went to Aikido and then out afterwards.

2007-08-17 07:21:38
144.   dianagramr
Kate ....

My thoughts are with you during these difficult times.

Jim added so much to this community.

2007-08-17 08:30:50
145.   Chyll Will
Dear Kate,

I could not believe what I read here last night, and I couldn't think of anything worthy of saying that would describe what your husband meant to us. Though I never met him in life, I consider him family. As he once said to me, "we're not that much different after all!" And as much as he would infuriate people at times with his argumentive and tempermental rantings, I think I speak for all in saying that we have a lot of respect for him.

I do have something more to say, but I haven't figured out how to say it until I "speak" with him first. From what I've known, he's a good man and will always be remembered as such, and for my part I will remember him as family and a friend.

With Much Respect and Blessings,
Chyll Will

2007-08-17 14:42:48
146.   Jay Jaffe
To Kate Dean:

My sincere condolences on your loss. Like most of the others here, I didn't know Jim personally, but I enjoyed his presence as part of this community, and the passion he brought to our debates here. I have fond recollections of a few threads where we interacted directly, either on the opposite side of a topic or sharing the same one.

I wish you and yours the best in these difficult times.

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