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Won Yesterday
2007-10-07 20:47
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Baseball's other three division series ended before the Yankees came to bat last night, and, in the early going, it looked as though the Yankees would go down as meekly as the Cubs, Phillies, and Angels. Roger Clemens got two ground balls to start the game, but Derek Jeter threw the second past Jason Giambi for what was absurdly ruled an infield single by Asdrubal Cabrera. Clemens then fell behind Travis Hafner 3-0, eventually walking him, and, after a Victor Martinez fly out, gave up an RBI single to Ryan Garko.

Thus the Yankees came to bat already behind 1-0 in a game in which they faced elimination. Johnny Damon singled to start things off, but Jeter, fresh off his non-error, bunted foul then ground into a double play. The pattern repeated itself in the second when Trot Nixon, whom Eric Wedge devilishly started in right field against Clemens, homered to make it 2-0 Cleveland, and Jorge Posada ground into a double play to erase a leadoff single by Alex Rodriguez (yes, Alex Rodriguez, what of it?).

The key event of the second inning, however, came on the second pitch to Kenny Lofton, who was leading off the inning. Lofton bunted a ball foul down the third base line and, in breaking off the mound, Clemens felt his tender left hamstring grab on him. When Casey Blake ground out to second after Nixon's homer, Clemens made a move to his left and the leg, in Clemens' words, "locked up" on him. Following the inning, Clemens went back into the clubhouse to have the leg tightly wrapped, but he was unable to finish his pitches and started the third by walking Hafner again and going full on Martinez before getting him swinging on a lame 92-mile-per-hour fastball right over the plate. With that, Joe Torre and trainer Gene Monahan made their second visit to the mound of the inning and called on Phil Hughes. Roger Clemens, for the night, and possibly for his career, was done.

Hughes' bounced his second pitch past Posada to move Hafner to second, then gave up a bloop double to right by Jhonny Peralta that ran the score to 3-0, but got out of the inning without allowing Peralta to score. Whatever damage Clemens' leg was going to inflict on the Yankees' hopes of keeping their season alive had been limited by Joe Torre's quick hook.

In the bottom of the inning, Hideki Matsui led off by beating out a bouncing ball hit toward second base for an infield single and moved to second on a Robinson Cano groundout. Melky Cabrera then hit a ball straight into the dirt in front of home that rolled fair. Martinez pounced on the ball and threw to third as Matsui attempted to advance, but Matsui got to the bag just ahead of the throw, aided by an excellent hook slide to the outfield side of the bag. Despite having his knee drained a week ago, Matsui was running with the abandon of a man who refused to accept defeat. Johnny Damon followed by singling Matsui home for the first Yankee run of the series not scored on a home run. Jeter then hit into another double play to kill the rally, but the Yankees had life.

Things got even brighter when Hughes turned in a 1-2-3 fourth inning, striking out Nixon (fastball up and away, swinging) and Grady Sizemore (fastball at the knees, inside corner, looking) and pitched around a one-out single by Hafner in the fifth, striking out Garko (fastball inside, looking) to end that frame.

Jason Giambi struck out to start the bottom of the fifth, but Matsui again got things going by going the other way with a Westbrook pitch for a single to left. Robinson Cano followed suit, slicing a double into the left field corner to push Matsui to third, and Melky Cabrera did the same with an opposite-field single that plated Matsui to bring the Yankees within one. Johnny Damon then took a pitch in the dirt and another just low before launching the 2-0 pitch from Westbrook into the old Yankee bullpen in right for a game-changing three-run home run. It was like an instant replay of his back-breaking grand slam in the deciding game of the 2004 ALCS, except this time for the home team. It was a season-saving shot, and the Stadium absolutely exploded when it cleared the fence. Damon came out to take a full, Reggie-style curtain call and, though their lead was a slim two-runs, it suddenly felt like the Yankees were out of harm's way.

After another scoreless frame by Hughes in the sixth, the Yankee bats piled on Westbrook and reliever Aaron Fultz for three more runs. The inning started with an infield single by Alex Rodriguez, which chased Westbrook. Posada then singled off Fultz. Doug Mientkiewicz hit for Giambi and bunted the runners over, prompting the Tribe to walk Matsui. Robinson Cano followed with a single to right that, delightfully, Trot Nixon failed to scoop, allowing it to roll to the wall as the bases emptied and Cano raced around to third.

Joba Chamberlain came on in the seventh to retire the top three batters in the Cleveland order on 16 pitches, striking out Sizemore on a wicked slider and Asdrubal Cabrera on three pitches, a 99-mile-per-hour fastball, a 79-mile-per-hour curve that dropped into the zone, and an 87-mile-per-hour slider that dive bombed out of it.

Joba stumbled a bit in his second inning of work. He got the first two outs on seven pitches when a Garko double play erased a leadoff single by Maritnez, but he then walked Peralta and gave up a single to Lofton and an RBI double to Nixon before getting Casey Blake to fly out a little too deep to right field for comfort's sake. All totalled, he threw 38 pitches in his two innings, his major league high.

With a still-comfortable four-run lead, Mariano Rivera worked a ten-pitch ninth, striking out Cabrera (high heat swinging) and Hafner (fastball away looking) on a total of seven pitches to seal the Yankees' 8-4 victory and send them to a now-necessary Game Four.

Chien-Ming Wang will be the Yankee starter in Game Four, starting on three-days rest for the first time in his major league career. That's the right call. Wang is significantly better at home than on the road. What's more, sinkerballers tend to suffer when they're too strong, leaving the ball up. Being slightly less fresh usually works to their advantage as they get more natural sink on their pitch. Beyond that, with Hughes having been burned last night, starting Wang tonight allows the Yankees to reserve Mike Mussina for long relief duty, and would also allow Andy Pettitte to start a possible Game Five on normal rest. Not that anyone's looking beyond tonight, of course.

Chamberlain, unlike Hughes, will be available tonight, though he did seem to tire in the eighth last night (the three hits he allowed in that inning, as well as the scary flyout by Blake, were all on fastballs up in the zone that were clocked in the mid-90s, rather than his usual high-90s). It could be that Joba will only be available for one inning, or even just a portion thereof if he's needed to come in and kill a Cleveland rally, but Rivera, who threw just ten pitches last night, should be able to pick up the slack.

The Indians will stick with Paul Byrd as their starter tonght, perhaps hoping for a win that will allow them to reserve C.C. Sabathia for Game One of the ALDS. The Yankees aren't looking ahead. They'll stick with trying to win today.

Comments (134)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-10-07 22:41:19
1.   Schteeve
They will win.
2007-10-07 22:55:10
2.   weeping for brunnhilde
So explain to me again why Derek failed to bunt against Schilling?
2007-10-07 23:02:48
3.   weeping for brunnhilde
"Robinson Cano followed with a single to right that, delightfully, Trot Nixon failed to scoop, allowing it to roll to the wall as the bases emptied and Cano raced around to third."

"Delightful" indeed, Cliff.

One of the more delightful things I've seen in some time.

The same thing actually happened to me in softball today in center because in my haste to sprint in to field the ball, I neglected to actually field the ball and came up with a glove full of air. Nothing lonelier than having to turn around and run after a stray ball out there.

After my own failure on the diamond, it was especially gratifying and delightful, as you say, to see the same thing happen to Trot Nixon, of all people, at the Stadium as our guys just kept on running.

Nice hit, Robby!

2007-10-07 23:06:54
4.   weeping for brunnhilde
So many delicious tidbits tonight.

As you say, Cliff, Matsui's hustle was inspired.

And how 'bout Mo striking out his final batter on three (count them) identical pitches on the outside corner, not one of them even eliciting a swing.

Good God, but that was beautiful. Sent the frisson of bloodlust up my spine. Just carved him right up.

Have faith in the Yankees, my son, have faith in the great Rivera.

2007-10-07 23:11:11
5.   weeping for brunnhilde
"Chamberlain, unlike Hughes, will be available tonight, though he did seem to tire in the eighth last night (the three hits he allowed in that inning, as well as the scary flyout by Blake, were all on fastballs up in the zone that were clocked in the mid-90s, rather than his usual high-90s)."

What do we make of this? A mid-90s fastball still shouldn't be quite so hittable. Does this mean essentially that the fastball's straight and that Joba relies on setting up the fastball with the breaking stuff?

I was stunned that whoever that was got on top of that high and away fastball, managing (iirc) not only to hit it, but to pull it.

It was really high, out of the zone, even, yet still the guy got around on it. That made me feel a bit insecure.

2007-10-08 04:04:52
6.   unmoderated
5 It was Victor Borges Martinez.
2007-10-08 04:07:53
7.   nemecizer
Got tickets to my first post season game today. Section 301, Row C. Banters drop by for free beer! Just ask for the nemecizer.

GO YANKEES!!!

(And if my boss tries to say I can't go, well then take my job and shove it!)

2007-10-08 04:15:53
8.   rufuswashere
>>What's more, sinkerballers tend to suffer when they're too strong, leaving the ball up. Being slightly less fresh usually works to their advantage as they get more natural sink on their pitch.

I've heard this since the days of Stottlemyer pitching for the Yanks in the 1960s. Has anyone ever looked at this to confirm it's true? I hope it is, but just wondering.

But no doubt Wang is better at home.

2007-10-08 05:02:34
9.   The Mick 536
Frisson of bloodlust up my spine only occurs when the Yankees play the Sox.

Gotta go after them one at a time.

2007-10-08 05:32:17
10.   williamnyy23
8 I am not sure about all sinker ball pitchers, but Wang has pitched a little better with more rest, although the samples might not be big enough to draw a definitive conclusion (see below). Regardless, I think the more relevant split is that Wang will be pitching at home!

3 days rest - 3.86ERA / 4.2IP
4 days rest - 4.02ERA/ 326.2IP
5 days rest - 3.73ERA/ 130.1IP
6+ days rest - 2.66ERA/ 64.1IP

2007-10-08 05:32:58
11.   Jeb
Today doesn't "feel" like game 4 last year. Today feels like a win.

It's all about TODAY. Win one game. Just one. Don't even think about Wednesday. Don't check the "*if necessary" times for that game. That game doesn't exist. It's apocraphyl. Just focus on today. Today only. Almost time to put on the "EVIL EMPIRE" T-shirt. Inning by inning. Brick by Brick. I know in my heart that three things are going to happen today:

1. Arod's going to do something to lead this team.

2. Wanger's sinker will be dancing more at home.

3. The Yankees will win today.

Who's with me?????

2007-10-08 05:42:28
12.   3rd gen yankee fan
Win today too!!!!
2007-10-08 05:46:33
13.   Knuckles
I told Mrs. Knuckles as Mo was warming that I wanted to see a 10-pitch ninth inning from him. She asked why not 9 pitches? I said that'd be even better but 10 is a nice solid number. Ten Mo tosses later, the Yankees had a new lease on life.

They didn't make things easy in the regular season; why should we think they'd do so now?

2007-10-08 05:50:16
14.   rbj
11 I'll jump on that wagon.
2007-10-08 06:19:57
15.   AbbyNormal821
11 I'm with ya!
4 Frisson...oooh, good word there! (and yeah, I had to look it up!)
2007-10-08 06:48:23
16.   Bama Yankee
11 I'm with ya, Jeb (BTW, that post could make a nice pregame speech. Coach Bryant would be proud. Roll Tide and Go Yankees)
2007-10-08 06:52:39
17.   pistolpete
Today feels like we chase Byrd by the 4th (8 runs or more), Wang goes 6, gives up 1 or 2 but someone like Farnsworth or Veras gives back 4 in the later innings.

Yanks win in 2007 fashion, 10-7.

Back to Cleveland!

2007-10-08 06:54:40
18.   Bama Yankee
11 Hey Jeb, Suzyn Waldman is on line 2... She mentioned your name, but then she started speaking French... ;-)
2007-10-08 07:01:06
19.   wsporter
3 "Delightful" - "HA!"
2007-10-08 07:01:16
20.   seamus
3 not as bad as setting up under a flyball while backpedaling, only to trip on the outfield turf and fall on your ass and have the ball fall in front of you. As I did last week in my softball game. Luckily, I was backed up so we got the ball in pretty fast.
2007-10-08 07:05:26
21.   RIYank
20 Did you consider pulling a "Blue Jay"? You know, blame somebody else for making noise, or maybe there was a woman nearby in an inappropriately revealing outfit.
2007-10-08 07:07:37
22.   seamus
21 HA! :)

I just felt really stupid...

2007-10-08 07:17:33
23.   Dimelo
Finally able to watch some Yankee playoff baseball.

Man, you guys think some of the annoucers are bad on TNT/ESPN/FOX then you should try watching the ESPN Deportes feed that I'm getting here in teh Dominican Republic. They go into studio analysis after every 1/2 inning and they do it twice - before the commercial break and then when they come back from the commercial breaks.

The Dominican Republic is Red Sox country, I have met few Yankee fans and a whole lot of Red Sox fans.

I got a good chuckle at the cemetary yesterday when my cousin leans over to me and in Spanish says to me, "you smell that?". Smell what? The smell of the Yankees being buried tonight.

Red Sox fans are pathetic, even the one's in your own family. :-)

2007-10-08 07:24:07
24.   Jeb
18 Bama Yankee, if the Yanks can win again, I'll volunteer eat the peanuts out of Suzyn Walman's poo.
2007-10-08 07:24:35
25.   seamus
Last night's game was very gratifying, but I've gotta believe that we should not use Joba tonight. He looked exhausted and I'd worry that he would not come out firing on all cylinders. I suppose if we need to, we need to though.
2007-10-08 07:28:29
26.   Andre
how's the weather in NYC? It's pouring buckets in Mass.
2007-10-08 07:40:33
27.   NJYankee41
23 How come the DR is Red Sox country? I never realized that.

24 Uhh.....what?

2007-10-08 07:42:30
28.   Wait Til Next Year
I feel the same vibes everyone else does! This is not 2006! Yanks will win tonight and the bats will respond to CC in game 5! Bring on the Red Sox, another paper tiger!
2007-10-08 07:42:56
29.   seamus
26 forecast says 30% chance of rain today and tonight...
2007-10-08 07:45:28
30.   pistolpete
27 Big Papi, Manny.
2007-10-08 07:45:52
31.   Dimelo
27 It always has been, at least since Pedro went there. They have Manny and Ortiz, and the Yanks have ARod. They don't have a lot of love for ARod here.

When I was younger, I remember everyone loving the Dodgers here because they had Mondesi and Ramon Martinez at the time.

Dominicans don't follow teams, they follow select Dominican players and stick with that team.

2007-10-08 07:47:49
32.   Jeb
28 There is no red sox series looming. There is no CC, there is no game 5....JUST FOCUS ON TONIGHT...THINK ABOUT NOTHING ELSE...11 .
2007-10-08 07:48:08
33.   Bama Yankee
27 Before yesterday's game, Jeb said he would French kiss Suzyn Waldman if the Yankees won... Now I guess he's offering to take their relationship to another level... ;-)
2007-10-08 07:52:15
34.   Yankee Fan In Boston
33 dear lord, i hope this gets a chance to escalate into the WS... i can only imagine what jeb will be forced to do.

29 i'll take rain over a plague of locusts or whatever those things were any time.

if the yankees can't beat paul byrd in a do-or-die situation, they don't deserve to play on.

let's go, fellas. you can do this.

2007-10-08 07:52:45
35.   weeping for brunnhilde
32 Hear, hear!
2007-10-08 07:57:02
36.   Bama Yankee
32 Agreed. Although, every time I try to focus on tonight's game I keep seeing chocolate covered peanuts for some reason...
2007-10-08 07:59:14
37.   weeping for brunnhilde
20 :)

It's amazing how difficult it is to play outfield. I think it's far and away the most underrated skill in baseball, probably due to lousy camera work.

It's easy to see what the infielders do, but with outfielders, by the time the camera finds them, the hard work of tracking the ball has been done already.

You tend to see the guy after he's settled under the ball so it looks like all you have to do is get under the ball and wait for it to come down.

But the trick of being able to run to where you think the ball will land (rather than backpedaling) and then turning around (so as not to fall on your ass tripping over your own feet) is so extraordinary that it amazes me how skilled even the poorest outfielder is.

2007-10-08 08:00:58
38.   joejoejoe
Kudos to Joe Torre for doing his best Sparky Anderson last night and having a quick hook with Clemens. If Wang has similar troubles tonight I suspect we'll see Mussina and that makes me feel good. I really like these two-headed monster starter combos and wonder if that isn't a better way to construct a bullpen than having a gaggle of middle relievers.
2007-10-08 08:04:08
39.   yankz
No, please don't rain! Then CC can come back on full rest!

Baseball gods, you owe us one!

2007-10-08 08:04:44
40.   Rob Middletown CT
I play CF or LF for my rec league softball team. Tracking fly balls is a helluva lot of fun, but it's certainly not easy (the one right at you, but over your head, is particularly hard). I'm pretty good for our league, but I still muff a few each season.

Just like Trot Nixon! Har-har... ;)

2007-10-08 08:06:28
41.   Jeb
33 34 understand, I am NOT looking ahead 11 , but if the Yanks did win the series, I'd move to the Mystic Country region of Southeast Connecticut and marry Suzyn Waldman and pleasure her orally every day.
2007-10-08 08:13:22
42.   weeping for brunnhilde
40 Har har!

It is fun. The one right at you, but over your head. God. That's a special kind of hell.

You think you've actually got it lined up and at the last second it sails the fuck over your head and you feel like a circus clown.

I don't know what it's like for infielders, but booting a groundball is so straightforward and you've got the outfielders behind you to bail you out. Can't imagine it's quite as demoralizing/humiliating as miscues in the outfield.

Any infielders care to weigh in?

2007-10-08 08:13:29
43.   Yankee Fan In Boston
36 for a split second, i thought, "y'know.... i could actually go for some-- aw man..."

40 the line drive right at the CF is one of the hardest plays i've ever had to make. for some reason it is easier to do in RF or LF... for me anyway.

41 if there is a god, and that being possesses even the smallest sense of humor, i think you may have just locked this up, jeb.

2007-10-08 08:16:04
44.   bobtaco
41 just wow
2007-10-08 08:17:31
45.   yankz
36 Cue vomit. Thanks buddy.

42 There are few things as humiliating as having a ground ball go right through your legs when you're the SS. I mean, uh...so I've heard, you know.

2007-10-08 08:19:41
46.   Wait Til Next Year
Do you think it's funny to degrade women sexually on Banter? I don't.
2007-10-08 08:19:55
47.   weeping for brunnhilde
45 So you've heard.

ha hah aha!

:)

2007-10-08 08:20:41
48.   Yankee Fan In Boston
42 i am an outfielder in a hardball league. i can't hit, i have no arm, but i can track down a fly ball. that and the fact that i manage the team is all that keeps me in the lineup. but i am by no means an athlete.

that said, i have been forced into the infield a few times. SS and 3B. i can say that things happen so fast at 3B that if i was in any kind of position to make the play (a 50/50 chance at best), i could usually do it.

SS was torture. strange hops. judging whether you want to charge and take the short hop, or wait back and let the ball come to you... line drives off the end of the bat were curving around my head (only a slight exaggeration).

i have been absolutely humiliated in the infield. "taking off the glove, throwing it as hard as i can into the dirt, kicking said glove" humiliated.

it was more humiliating than any OF experience i have ever known... and i've made a real ass of myself out there, too.

2007-10-08 08:21:42
49.   AJOliver1
I'm hoping the Yankees blast the Indians tonight because a close game might be tough with Joba going two innings last night. Also, I hope Jeter shows up tonight. He has been terrible this series. I'd like to see him move over to 3B next season if ARod takes off.
2007-10-08 08:22:41
50.   yankz
48 Third base is nuts, I hate it. Not only is it way too close to a RH hitter, but I never really know what to do on bunts.
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-10-08 08:24:46
51.   Bama Yankee
48 "i am an outfielder in a hardball league. i can't hit, i have no arm"

Bernie, it that you? I wondered what you had been doing to keep in shape for a comeback... ;-)

2007-10-08 08:24:58
52.   weeping for brunnhilde
48 Ha hah ahah ah a!!

Fair enough. :)

Perhaps it's fair to say simply that baseball's a humiliating sport.

Hats off for competing, YFB. Hardball. That's serious business.

Must fucking kill to get hit by a pitch.

Do you hang in there, or are you constantly bailing out?

2007-10-08 08:25:28
53.   Yankee Fan In Boston
50 i didn't mind 3B as much as SS, but that is likely due to ignorance and less exposure to the position. plus, the fear of being decapitated kept me pretty alert and in the game.
2007-10-08 08:26:06
54.   weeping for brunnhilde
51 :)

Our dear Bernie. Oooh, hey, and right on cue, eh? Comment 51.

2007-10-08 08:28:13
55.   weeping for brunnhilde
53 "The fear of being decapitated."

Ha ha hah ah ah a ha ha ha!!

2007-10-08 08:31:27
56.   Yankee Fan In Boston
52 i usually get hit only once a year. when you bat a lofty .185, you owe it to your team to stand in the box and take your lumps.

anybody wanting to play in a boston area hardball league, let me know.

we're always looking for bodies.

(especially ptitchers.)

2007-10-08 08:31:39
57.   seamus
Yeah, third base is kind of intimidating. The balls come way too fast. I just started playing Rec Softball this summer and I played a game at third base and I was just awful. One of the most difficult things in the infield is knowing what to do with the ball as soon as you have it when there are runners on base. I hadn't played ball since little league so it took me a while, after much embarassment, to get on track.

I like outfield because I get to run. I mostly play center right now but I'm not athletic at all. I just like to run. And I do hustle. But the flyball I fell down on I was playing left and I definitely did too much backpedaling. When the ball is to my left or right or deep over my head i'm good at turning and running to it, but those high lazy flies over my head I tend to backpedal and have not kicked myself of that habit.

But at least in the outfield, for many mistakes in early judgement you sometimes have time to correct it. In the infield, no time to make mistakes.

2007-10-08 08:33:04
58.   Yankee Fan In Boston
51 i missed that one. i wish i could do half of what bernie will be capable of in a few years from now.

yes. i really am that bad.

2007-10-08 08:40:58
59.   Rob Middletown CT
I'm gonna agree w/Yankees fan in Boston:

Though I'm usually an OFer (also of the "no bat, no arm, but I can catch!" variety), I've played SS, and SS is worse. I'm always so concious of the lack of time. Not only must you make the play, you must make it quickly, or the runner will beat it out (well, not always in my league, but you get the idea). I also have to continually fight the tendency to lay back and "let the ball play me" which, as we all know, is a bad idea. The first game this year I had to play SS was awful. I'd been in the OF all year and we had no SS, so I volunteered. Sigh.

I prefer 3B for one reason: I'm oddly excellent at charging slow rollers & firing to 1st, and that probably happens at least 1 time per game in our league. I love that play. Not as much as I love running down a ball in the gap, but it's nice. :)

2007-10-08 08:41:56
60.   pistolpete
41 Ooh, can we all come to the wedding?
2007-10-08 08:43:29
61.   Rob Middletown CT
YFiB: we're ALL "that bad" in comparison to even the Ghost of Bernie.

I would probably be a bad hitter in LITTLE LEAGUE. I'm the guy who manages to go 1-4 with a single in a slowpitch rec. softball game. There's so much movement in my swing I jam myself.

2007-10-08 08:51:50
62.   Yankee Fan In Boston
61 "There's so much movement in my swing I jam myself."

you can work on that, though. it sounds like you at least have an idea of what you might be doing mechanically.

...again, this advice is coming from a .185 hitter... but still. a couple of trips to a batting cage could solve that.

channel your inner dimaggio.

2007-10-08 08:52:08
63.   weeping for brunnhilde
61 Just look away and out over the plate.

I was thinking about my own approach yesterday, how I'd pitch myself, and it occurred to me that I'm easy to jam. I seldom offer at pitches inside, even if they're strikes. I rarely pull the ball (and when I do, I don't even open up), but use right and center. I love going up the middle, which seems to be my natural swing.

So try maybe eliminating the inside part of the plate and just looking middle-out.

And of course, the trick in slow pitch is to just wait and wait and then wait a tad more and then BOOM!

:)

2007-10-08 08:54:04
64.   Yankee Fan In Boston
59 yes. nothing beats charging towards the plate, bare-handing the slow roller, and throwing it to first.

(whether or not the ball is within arm's reach of first is another matter entirely at that point... it is simply an amazing feeling.)

2007-10-08 08:58:20
65.   Jeb
60 you're all invited.

46 yes. But I'm not degrading her, I'm degrading me. Lighten up, Francis.

2007-10-08 09:00:31
66.   yankz
2B and 1B, on the other hand, are simply awesome.

WRT to not knowing where to throw, I always plan it out before the pitch is thrown. Then I boot the grounder because I'm thinking about where to throw it.

2007-10-08 09:04:32
67.   yankz
From Pete: "I know there are people with the Yankees who read this blog."

Oh dear god, please tell me they don't read the comments. I seriously hope they don't think that's what all fans want.

2007-10-08 09:10:50
68.   Yankee Fan In Boston
66 agreed. i love playing 1B and 2B, but i've only done so in practices. my feelings would probably change as soon as somebody yelled, "play ball."
2007-10-08 09:19:09
69.   seamus
68 Same here, I've only played them in practice. I like playing outfield too much. But also, there are other competent people who can play those positions in our games.
2007-10-08 09:26:32
70.   Bama Yankee
67 I have it on good authority that Karim Garcia reads this blog...

...and Suzyn Waldman has just hotlinked this thread on her MySpace page...

2007-10-08 09:27:31
71.   Yankee Fan In Boston
70 who?
2007-10-08 09:27:51
72.   rufuswashere
I played 2nd and 3rd in high school baseball (played 3rd when our 3rd baseman pitched), and 2nd was much easier with two big exceptions -- turning the double play and covering the bag on the steal. When you're looking to catch the ball and the runner is bearing down on you at the same time, it is incredibly frightening. I don't know how the pros make it look so easy.

Of course I was a lousy fielder, so everything was a challenge.

2007-10-08 09:28:30
73.   standuptriple
If I had a myspace I would totally add Suz to my "friends" list (purely platonic, Jeb).
2007-10-08 09:33:39
74.   yankz
Jeb, you'll get to come home to this every night:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fdtn0Z4o8cM

2007-10-08 09:36:27
75.   joejoejoe
65 46 I'm with Wait Til Next Year.

Random remarks that portray a woman broadcaster as lucky to get your sexual attention don't have much to do with last night's game. If there was some context to your remark I could understand your call for a sense of humor but since it's entirely gratuitous what you're really asking is to set the tone of discussion for everybody with no respect for their perspective. Good blog comments sections have a sense of community and I don't see what is gained by offending even a small minority of that community just for kicks. If you're going to say something crude at least try and have some context instead of being crude for it's own sake.

2007-10-08 09:38:32
76.   seamus
75 thanks and i agree.
2007-10-08 09:45:27
77.   yankz
I can't believe we've never discovered this before:

http://www.whoiskarimgarcia.com/

2007-10-08 09:50:43
78.   Rob Middletown CT
weeping for brunnhilde,

Me trying to hit to rf/rcf is comical. The result is almost always a popup to 2B. No, for me the very best is to concentrate on hitting a liner up the middle. Not closing my eyes during my swing helps too. Oh, and not swinging at total crap. And not overswinging. And...

It's like the golf swing. There's about a million things you can do wrong. I do half of them at any given time. :)

2007-10-08 09:52:24
79.   Bama Yankee
77 I stumbled onto that one back in June (no it's not my site):
bronxbanter.baseballtoaster.com/archives/685421.html

From that thread:
I especially like the quotes that they call "Karimisms". My favorite is "The greatest trick Karim Garcia ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist."

followed closely by:
"Do you believe in Karim Garcia? YES!!!"
and
"Now there's a steal by Karim Garcia! Underneath to DJ! He lays it up and in!!"

Who knew that Karim Garcia was mentioned in so many famous quotes... but then again, who even knew Karim Garcia in the first place?

2007-10-08 09:56:39
80.   Jeb
75 and 75 . Oh please. I mean WHATEVER. Seriously, I love how you guys are defending honor and all that, but if you're unable to read sarcasm + frustration over the Yankees problems (and literally being willing to do ANYTHING to change that), then you just need to go outside and have a smoke or something. Just chill out. Why does someone have to come on here and be so damn holier than thou?!

Ms. Waldman, if you read this blog, I assure you that I meant no offense to your honor, beauty or integrity. It was harmless and Constitutionally protected parody, but if you insist, I will be happy to move to the Mystic Country Region of Southeast Connecticut and we can go to that resort and casino that I always hear you trumpeting on XM. I will be happy to take you dancing.

By the way guys, if the comments offend you that much, then ignore them. We'll be talking about the game soon enough and it won't be about Ms. Waldman, it will be about Wang, Jetes, etc. Let me and Bama and Yankz (and whomever else) have our fun JOKING about something (while we're supposed to be at work) and don't try to suck the life out of us. Dammit.

It's a joke, it's a joke it's a joke. CHILL! OYE! Dear Lord, I can't believe that I'm having an argument on a blog. UGH!

74 Yankz, that's awesome. Whomever made that video was also using parody to mask their love, just as I was.

2007-10-08 09:57:15
81.   Bama Yankee
78 "It's like the golf swing. There's about a million things you can do wrong."

I had a guy tell me once that my golf swing had more moves than a belly dancer (no offense intended to any belly dancers we might have reading the banter).

2007-10-08 09:59:34
82.   yankz
Eh, I say we give Waldman a rest. I don't care one way or the other, but if people do, then whatever. There are funnier jokes to tell.

Like Papelbon's intimidation mask: O-face, or just gas?

2007-10-08 10:00:06
83.   yankz
79 Flipping fantastic movie reference.
2007-10-08 10:01:39
84.   Jeb
82 I don't mind giving her a rest. But I'll say this, If I read one more sanctimonious comment designed to show the writer's own purity, perfection and knight-like chivalry, then it's going to be all suzyn all night long!

As Ric Flair would say, "WOOOOOOOO!"

;o)

2007-10-08 10:06:33
85.   seamus
63 hitting in slow pitch is excruciating in its demand for patience. way too much time to decide to swing, not swing, swing, not swing. I did finally start using one of the bats with fatter heads which has helped my hit less flyballs (almost always an out) and more lines and grounders.
2007-10-08 10:08:22
86.   Yankee Fan In Boston
77 beautiful.
2007-10-08 10:10:32
87.   RIYank
82 From The Boston Globe:

"But that was nothing compared to the double dose of champagne Theo Epstein took from Schilling and Papelbon, an explosion of the sticky liquid sending him shooting across the clubhouse floor, with Schilling whispering a warning to reporters standing close to watch out."

There. Now that will make everyone beg for a return to the Suzyn Waldman talk.

2007-10-08 10:10:32
88.   Yankee Fan In Boston
84 hey, jeb, perhaps if you directed your desperate attempts to continue yankee victory towards john sterling... no one could accuse you of being sexist, yet you could still take one for the team.

just a suggestion.

2007-10-08 10:12:55
89.   yankz
87 Yeah, I've read that, thanks for the visual, asshole.
2007-10-08 10:20:23
90.   Yankee Fan In Boston
77 you've spent hours trying to uncover the dark, musty secret. now, wear your query on your sleeve... or... your chest, i guess.

the karim garcia t-shirt is available now.

http://tinyurl.com/ysmrqp

2007-10-08 10:31:10
91.   williamnyy23
31 I've been to DR and I am not sure I agree that it's Red Sox country. Because of the large Dominican population in NY and the cross migration, there is a significant Yankees fan base. Now, that base has shifted based on certain players (Alou and the Expos, Sammy and the Cubs, Pedro/Papi and the Sox), but I'd guess that the team with the biggest non-player based following is the Yankees.
2007-10-08 10:35:32
92.   Jeb
88 You know, I really like John Sterling. I like his corny homerun calls, his "Yankees Win...Theeeeeee Yankees win!" call and even his voice. In fact, after hearing the Cards and Chisox broadcasters, I could care less that he's a homer. I am probably the only Yankee fan on earth that likes Sterling.

Even my 5 year old runs around saying, "Bobby Abreu as sweet as candy!"

But, while I like Mr. Sterling, I don't "Like" him in that way if you know what I mean. LOL.

2007-10-08 10:37:24
93.   williamnyy23
37 I beg differ! As someone who has played and continues to play infield in a softball league (2B/SS), I think outfielders have it easy, especially when you aren't playing on professionally groomed fields. Having also played a little OF, the reaction time is what sets the positions apart. Also, there are so many more decisions to make on the infield.
2007-10-08 10:38:38
94.   Yankee Fan In Boston
92 i tried.
2007-10-08 10:43:29
95.   williamnyy23
37 Also, middle infield has the potential to be dangerous when turning the double play. There's seldom intended contact in the outfield, however.
2007-10-08 10:43:35
96.   Bama Yankee
82 Yeah, I'm with you. I'll let it go.

I'll take the blame for bringing the Waldman stuff up in this thread. If I offended anyone I am truly sorry (although, I have read a lot worse stuff than that on here).

Also, if our posts should only be on topic or concerning last night's game...well, I guess I'm usually outta luck. I just try to lighten the mood around here sometimes and try to help keep everyone loose. Man, life is too short to take things so seriously...

2007-10-08 10:50:43
97.   Orly Yarly NoWai
64 I've never played 3B, so I don't know how great that feels, but I'm not sure it can compare with the swinging strikeout.
2007-10-08 10:52:44
98.   Jeb
96 don't sweat it Bama, I got your back. I think that you can look around and see lots of comments that don't have much to do with the game. I will let it go for now too.

BUT, if the Yanks win tonight I am expecting you to post "Paging Suzyn Waldman to Jeb's room" or some such nonsense! [FN1]

;o)

[FN1] Again, this is pure parody between Me and Bama and NO OFFENSE is meant to anyone else, Ms. Waldman, any "true" Yankees or any Native American Tribes.

2007-10-08 10:53:30
99.   RIYank
92 Not at all. This issue has been well "researched" here at BB. A significant minority likes Sterling, though we all agree he has too many, uh, senior moments when he either has no idea what has happened on the field or he forgets that he has to tell the radio audience.
2007-10-08 10:53:45
100.   Yankee Fan In Boston
97 do you pitch? because actually getting someone to do that would be pretty amazing.

(as for the guy doing the swinging and missing, well, i am well versed in such matters.)

Show/Hide Comments 101-150
2007-10-08 10:53:54
101.   claybeez
I spent the morning reliving the game through last night's thread. It made me wish I'd been smart enough to DVR the game.

I was at the game last night and it was that loud and that amazing. It was my first playoff game at the Stadium, so maybe it does indeed get louder. Still, it may have been as much sweet noise as I've ever heard.

Clemens was definitely booed as he left the mound. It really irritated me. The vast majority of fans though made sure that their appreciation of his years of effort was the last and most resounding sound.

When Hughes came in everyone was excited. Even more importantly they were determined to boost his performance with two-strike claps, wild cheers and chants of "Huuuuuughes." The crowd clearly wanted to energize the Yanks, to remind them it was their house and they were not alone in this. It was special. So positive. Something as a non-native (born, but not really raised here) I often find lacking in NYC.

As for the Waldman thing, I asked the lady of my house. She agreed that it could be seen as offensive since such a large, diversified group read the blog. I must admit that I was not offended as I'm used to silly talk and sex being intertwined with sports. Personally, I find the near unanimous belittling of Suzyn's professional performance more damaging and offensive. Sexist. She's not the best. Not the worst. And I think she gets blasted more often for being a woman broadcaster. Somehow, that bothers me so much more.

2007-10-08 10:54:15
102.   cult of basebaal
93 i don't want any part of playing infield in softball, seen too many weird hops and screaming blurs that sizzle into the outfield before any of the fielders can react ... 3rd base, in particular, ought to come with a suit of armor, preferably full plate ... and that's in co-ed ASA leagues, god help you if you play the hot corner in u-trip or unlimited (or pitch ... pitching low-arc is a damn death wish)
2007-10-08 10:55:53
103.   yankz
96 Seriously, are we turning into Dodger Thoughts? Because I'm not sure I can handle that many rules. I've got too much Miguel Cabrera in me.
2007-10-08 10:58:23
104.   RIYank
103 I tell ya, it will be a sad day when we adopt "No Right on Red".
2007-10-08 10:59:02
105.   Yankee Fan In Boston
103 nice cabrera reference.
2007-10-08 11:03:33
106.   Bob Timmermann
104
We even take left turns on red lights in some situations out West.

Such is life on the New Frontier.

2007-10-08 11:07:50
107.   cult of basebaal
102 besides, there is no better feeling in softball than running down a shot into an outfield gap ... one of those where everybody thinks it's a sure extra-base hit or even a homer when it leaves the bat, but you know, as soon as you break, that you're going to run it down

well, either that or hitting a line-drive backspin homerun, those mythical creatures that seem like they could be caught in the infield but keep rising and carrying and carrying ...

2007-10-08 11:08:20
108.   cult of basebaal
106 dogs and cats, living together ... MASS HYSTERIA!!!
2007-10-08 11:14:30
109.   seamus
93 if the infield is poorly groomed, the outfield is often worse. We play at this weird field in Pittsburgh where there is like 6 feet thick of ivy vines on the outfield fence (there is a rule about not finding it in the ivy - ground rule double. One of our players accidentally found a 3 foot hole while fielding a ball in there once. He was ok, but suddenly got shorter). The outfield is horrible. Our best player had a ball bounce clear over his head in left field for an insidethepark homer last week.
2007-10-08 11:15:37
110.   seamus
107 I wouldn't know what a homerun is. The best hit I had was a triple, which was in fact a 3 base error.
2007-10-08 11:16:49
111.   cult of basebaal
109 yeah, ground squirrels and gophers are hell on an outfield ... there are a couple of fields i've played on that have left me with an appreciation for carl spackler's rage
2007-10-08 11:17:08
112.   Bob Timmermann
110
Was it a 3-base error or more of a Trot Nixon thing?
2007-10-08 11:18:48
113.   seamus
112 3 base error. Well, really two errors. Swinging bunt, 3rd baseman throws past first, right fielder misses cutoff. But it was still good fun!
2007-10-08 11:20:38
114.   seamus
111 the best part is the ground rule double in the ivy rule. If you can't find it you are supposed to raise your hand. But the problem is that we raise our hands every time it goes in there now. Kind of a big loop hole.
2007-10-08 11:21:12
115.   yankz
RIYank, the Fookin John thing was hilarious.
2007-10-08 11:28:13
116.   3rd gen yankee fan
Well, I suppose I have to put in for the "insensitive broads" contingent and mention that I didn't feel degraded.
2007-10-08 11:29:12
117.   yankz
The LoHud comments have hit a new low. It's not even amusing this time.
2007-10-08 11:30:46
118.   RIYank
115 Ha!

I asked a desk clerk at the hotel (Best Western or something like that) what was a good Chinese place in town, and she told me what street it was on. I asked what it was called. She refused to tell me. So, I figured I'd better not risk losing my DT privileges...

2007-10-08 11:31:51
119.   cult of basebaal
117 really, now what are they knuckle-dragging about?
2007-10-08 11:34:25
120.   williamnyy23
109 I don't know about that. Dirt is a lot harder to maintain than a grass oufield. Sure, some poorly maintained fields have rough spots in the outfield, but divots and debris in an infield can wreck havoc, especially when you consider many outfield plays never touch the ground.
2007-10-08 11:34:57
121.   yankz
119 They're basically just attacking each other and Pete. It's very personal.
2007-10-08 11:40:13
122.   seamus
120 oh, I agree. Poorly maintained infields can be hell. I've seen it both ways though, better outfield and better infield.
2007-10-08 11:41:04
123.   yankz
New thread up.
2007-10-08 11:42:14
124.   Rob Middletown CT
Re: Suzyn. I'm not a fan. I think she's terrible. It's not b/c she's a woman. She's just bad. I don't like Sterling either, but at least his voice is good.

Re: infield vs. outfield. Where we play, the OF is fine. The IF is often difficult. Tricky hops are pretty much guaranteed. The bases are often loose, too. The OF is just grass. Not as much to screw up there. There is one field that has a depression in left that I have to be careful with, but that's nothing compared to playing SS on baked dirt that plays like concrete.

2007-10-08 11:44:03
125.   Raf
120 I don't mind the rough spots in the OF, but things like manhole covers (Charles Young in Manhattan) and sinkholes (Parade Grounds in Brooklyn) can quickly ruin your day.

I'm glad NYC is changing some of their fields to turf, makes me feel a bit safer playing on them.

FWIW, in softball I play P, OF, C, 1B. Co-ed softball, add 3B & SS. Hardball limits me to P & 1B

BR/TL, been playing the game since '86.

Have Bat - Will Travel
Wire Raf
The Bronx

:)

2007-10-08 11:46:23
126.   Jeb
99 really? I stand corrected then. Good, then I can proudly salute Sterling! As long as I don't hear, "that ball is high....it is far...it is....caught by the rightfielder Nixon."
2007-10-08 11:48:43
127.   Raf
Oh, and I prefer infield to OF. My legs aren't what they used to be, I'd rather range a couple of steps, than sprint and pull something in the OF. I was a decent OF, solid if unspectacular.

And add DeWitt Clinton (Manhattan) to the list of atrocious fields. Small wonder no one has been killed playing there.

2007-10-08 11:53:18
128.   Raf
126 Those calls REALLY irk me.
2007-10-08 12:27:32
129.   weeping for brunnhilde
78 Ha ha aha hah!!

I know, so much to focus on.

And then there's the mental thing. I popped a ball up yesterday (after we were already wiping the floor with the other team, but still, don't give anything away, right?) because I swung at the second pitch. And I heard the fielders chatter about "This guy hits it hard..."

Somehow it made me more aggressive and I overswung at the second pitch. I had to explain to me son, "See what happens when you don't wait for your pitch?"

So, so hard to stay focussed each and every time up, especially after you've had success in the first couple of ab. Your head (my head) starts to swell, you take a King Kong swing and pop the fucker up in the air.

It's all half-mental, you know?

2007-10-08 12:28:36
130.   weeping for brunnhilde
81 Heh heh heh.

:)

2007-10-08 12:34:07
131.   weeping for brunnhilde
[102-106] You guys are cracking me up.

107 Nothing more pleasing.

I love that feeling. Full out sprint, snatching the ball on the run, hearing the groans of frustration from the opposing dugout.

2007-10-08 12:36:03
132.   weeping for brunnhilde
114 Ha ha ha hah ah ah aha!!!
2007-10-08 13:03:30
133.   Jeb
One more thing about Suzyn and then I'll shut up about her. A serious thing. Seriously. I don't care for her a whole lot doing color, but she's grown on me a bit. When she missed a couple of games for religious reasons, I missed hearing her. And, I do like her reports from the clubhouse after the game.

To be frank, and I don't mean this in a mean way, but when I turn on the TV in the morning there are these knock-outs doing the weather. I guess I don't mind that, but I've commented to my wife on a number of occasions, "wouldn't it be great if they got a fat woman to do the weather, so no one will think it's all about eye candy?"

Suzyn ain't pretty, but clearly she got her position because she's got some talent as a broadcaster. At the end of the day I like her. (I'd still take Steiner over her).

2007-10-08 13:34:42
134.   NC Highlander
Only reason I can think of for taking out Hughes so early is that maybe Torre is saving him for a few innings in one of the next few games?

Also like the decision to pitch Wang. He looks mighty good going against Byrd. Plus if we win he probably sets up for game 1 of the ALCS.

Joba does concern me though. I don't like our chances if it's a close game in game 5 and we have to go to Farnsworth.

I think I'm already getting an ulcer just thinking about it.

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