Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
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2008-04-13 06:32
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

Well, that sucked. Tough 4-3 loss for the Yanks. A long rain delay helped prolong the agony for the Yankees but the crucial moment in the game was when manager Joe Girardi let Mike Mussina pitch to Manny Ramirez in the sixth. This is Manny we're talking about.

Jonathan Papelbon finished the Yankees off.

Ugh.

Both teams are now 6-6. Phil Hughes goes against Dice K tonight. Are you ready for some Joe Morgan!

Comments
2008-04-13 06:48:19
1.   Shaun P
NO!

Though I'll watch the game anyway. But maybe I shouldn't be so hard on him. Morgan's first chat at ESPN was earlier this week, and his responses were generally OK, sometimes even a little insightful. Maybe he'll be OK tonight, too.

2008-04-13 06:52:29
2.   monkeypants
I just hope that ESPN picks up where FOX left off--there just so many stories about the Boston Supermen that need to be told, I just want to hear them all.

OK, that's my last one of those childish posts for the day (at least until the game starts and we are subjected to Gammons' spittle-flecked excitement).

2008-04-13 07:09:59
3.   Shaun P
2 Without having read most of yesterday's game thread, I'm getting the feeling that I was lucky to miss the FOX broadcast yesterday. And not because the Yanks lost, or played poorly.
2008-04-13 07:21:07
4.   joe in boston
The only good thing about yesterday's loss was the comedic banter on this site. I was lurking/laughing all night.

A bad loss indeed. Let's face it - everyone knew Moose was NOT going to Manny out.

And I hate Papelbum too

2008-04-13 07:26:36
5.   joe in boston
4 oops ... not going to get manny out
2008-04-13 07:32:29
6.   monkeypants
4 5 Again, the announcers on the Canadian channel Rogers Sports Net have started calling Manny "Man-Ram." I think we should follow suit...
2008-04-13 07:48:47
7.   joe in boston
I did hear about that. It's getting to the point where everything about Sox-Yanks is just ridiculous.
2008-04-13 07:54:20
8.   Jeb
I hate Papelbon so much that I'm rooting for an injury. I know that's wrong and karma doesn't deal well with those feelings, but I just can't stand the way he goes about his business. I guess it's the way he turns and faces the batter that I loathe most -- that and that we couldn't hit him yesterday.

Maybe having him yo-yo'd and throwing 27 pitches will prevent him from pitching tonight. After all, we've got a fresh Ross, Traber, Joba and Mo. They've got a fresh Timlin.

2008-04-13 08:17:05
9.   Sonya Hennys Tutu
I can't take looking back through the in game threads, but when Joe G didn't have Moose intentionally walk Manny, or yank Moose outright, it left me scratching my head big time. And that was before Manny hit the double...
2008-04-13 08:27:20
10.   Zack
I personally am looking forward to another long and definitive conversation where all of the ESPN announcers assert, as fact, that the Yankees simply cannot make Joba a starter this year and that he should be the "8th inning guy" for two more season, in fact, until Mo is done so he can take over. Because "he is just to valuable NOW, and you simply can't find electric stuff like that, which NEEDS to be in the bullpen."

I find it fascinating if not quite alarming to see this movement to further define bullpen roles and place more importance on it. We've watched the artificial category of the save destroy the way a bullpen is used and force people into this notion that the 9th inning, no matter what, is by far the most important inning there is and that only certain people can pitch it, no matter what. And you're going to tell me that the 8th inning is somehow so important that only specific people can pitch it?? We are truly heading for the day when bullpens are rigidly set from the 6th inning on, so as long as there are certain conditions, managers will automatically default to their "6th innings" guy...

Its like the Media, well, the mass media, is deliberately trying to push for this for some bizarre, self important reason

2008-04-13 08:27:37
11.   3rd gen yankee fan
9 This is a very good question. Why not pull Moose and put in Joba? Was he "too warm" from the night before?

Given that Girardi asked Moose how he felt, it's akin to Grady letting Pedro continue pitching when he was obviously gassed.

I'm not too upset about it, just curious... guess this new manager does things differently.

2008-04-13 08:31:09
12.   3rd gen yankee fan
10 Advertising sales. When one inning is more important than another, more $$$ can be charged for one than another, if they can support a claim that more people will tune in at a certain time. They'll kill baseball in the meantime.
2008-04-13 08:45:56
13.   monkeypants
11 There were some posts on this last night. the handling of the inning was screwy. Moose had thrown fewer than 75 pitches and just K-ed Papi. He didn't seem to be out of gas. The main decision to be made was whether or not Moose 9tired or not) could handle pitching to Manny...I mean, Man-Ram.

If he could not, then you either pull Moose or intentionally walk Man-Ram (even though this loads the vases). If you think he can face Man-Ram, let him pitch..this was the route they took and we know the results. But then why pull Moose immediately after the double? Was he out of gas then? If so, why let him throw one pitch to Man-Ram?

I think Girardi got caught napping and he didn't have a pitcher ready in the BP in case Moose got into trouble. Especially with the heart of the lineup due up soon, someone (Joba?) should have ben warming.

Oh well, hindsight is always 20-20.

2008-04-13 08:47:03
14.   cocorn
"I hate Papelbon so much that I'm rooting for an injury."

You stay classy yankee fans!

2008-04-13 09:00:51
15.   monkeypants
BTW, I just noticed that Waswatching has a new post with the startling conclusion that there is only a small chance Phil Hughes ends up in the HOF. I love that site...it's a laugh riot.
2008-04-13 09:04:18
16.   Shaun P
12 Interesting theory. It does fit the facts.

10 I have two thoughts. Mass media likes to take a storyline and run with it. Jon Miller: "The New York Yankees have not lived up to their promise in a while, Joe. What's the story?" "Regular season success, Jon, but postseason failure. To win in October, you need a great bullpen. The Yanks have known this Mo Rivera was John Wetteland's setup man extraordinaire in 1996. But the Yanks have struggled to win it all since 2000 because they just don't have the same kind of set up guys they used to have in front of Mo Rivera." Keeping Joba in that role fits the now 6-year-old storyline perfectly.

The second is that there's been a ridiculous focus on closers and setup guys in the postseason for years now. Gibson beats Eck. "The Nasty Boys". Carter homers off Wild Thing. Mo-Wetteland (Wetteland was the first closer to be Serious MVP, wasn't he?). Mesa blows Game 7. Mo dominates 98-00. Mo fails, 01. K-Rod and Percival in 02. Foulke in 04. Jenks and Lidge in 05. Wainright in 06. Papelbon in 07. Joba the reliever fits this storyline much better than Joba the starter.

2008-04-13 09:04:37
17.   Bagel Boy
10 I was sad he didn't bring in Joba. But I'm also hopeful they'll stretch him out to three or four innings by June/July. That's exactly the game where that workload from him could have meant a win. Of course, then he's out for two or three days.

Also, with Jorge's AB in the ninth, that was another example where, had he gotten on, having Gardner on the bench could have been huge but not having him meant there was no one to run for Jorge. In Scranton, Gardner is now SLGing .800 (1 2B, 3 3B, 1 HR) with 2 SB.

What's really sad is that they were in a one-run game and the only way the bench was going to help was if Matsui pinch hit for Gonzo (and Betemit to come in and play SS). There is still no real use for Ensberg.

2008-04-13 09:24:40
18.   Zack
14 Yeah, that doesn't work if you don't read the whole post, and if you are a troll. Nice talking to you though...
2008-04-13 09:40:32
19.   Beth
@ Jeb, funny, that's almost exactly how I feel about Joba Chamberlain.
2008-04-13 09:45:13
20.   skybluestoday
Re: 14

Ugh, you don't want to beat the opposition because they're injured, you want to beat them because you played better BASEBALL than they did. Sigh.

Isn't that obvious?

2008-04-13 09:48:08
21.   Shaun P
Off topic - I see there is some more frustration going on in Dodger land over Mr. Kemp's lack of playing time, in favor of Mr. Pierre.

While I think we've all been very frustrated over, as the guys at RLYW call it, the "Worst Offense Ever", at least the Yanks are tied for second place right now behind the Orioles. We all know the O's won't be in first all season.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers have their own offensive woes, but are stuck looking up at the Diamondbacks. And Arizona might run away with the NL West, especially if the Dodgers frequently sit the one big home run hitter they have.

I wonder if Matt Kemp right now feels like a right-handed, more athletic version of Big Papi from his Twins days?

2008-04-13 11:31:19
22.   Bags
12 For the most part, the networks don't sell time that way. The Super Bowl is an exception (advertisers will sometimes negotiate a lower price for a spot late in the game) but baseball doesn't really work that way.
2008-04-13 12:15:56
23.   Zack
And to add to my previous point, I'm sure Mccarver and Morgan et al will forget to point out that despite Joba's incredible importance as the 8th inning guy, neither game thus far has factored him at all...
2008-04-13 12:21:29
24.   Dimelo
0 I really appreciate Girardi having the gall to letting Mussina make that decision in a game in APRIL.

It wasn't a tough loss, it was a learning experience for all involved. I think you have to show a player that you are willing to let them make their own decision (early on in the season to see what they got) and I think that's why, early in the season, managers give players more say and the players in turn feel they are part of something together.

Girardi asked a question, Mussina answered and Girardi turned around and basically said, "OK, now show me". Mussina had a great pitch sequence against Papi, why not have faith in him against Manny?

Yeah, yeah, I know all about the homerun but you have to see how players deal with adversity. I loved the decision.

8 I'm with you. I'm wishing awfully bad things to happen to Pap-Smear. It is bad karma, but so what? Just help a few more old ladies with their bags, help a kid to learn how to read and write, and hold the door open for your mistress when you go out to eat. That shit takes care of itself in the end, the karma balances all out.

Let's go Yanks!!!

2008-04-13 14:08:42
25.   OldYanksFan
We know in general, Youk is a high OBP guy. While Manny is a far more dangerous hitter, this year Youk's OBP is .400 to Manny's .320.

If we walk Manny, Moose has to throw Ks to Youk. Youk won't chase and is happy to walk with the bases loaded.

In pitching to Manny, a walk 'doesn't matter', so Moose can throw junk and hope Manny chases or hits the ball weakly. The problem was Manny was looking outside (after hitting an inside pitch 500') and Moose threw a hittable pitchright where Manny was looking.

I don't think the problem was JG's decision as much as Moose's execution.

Detroit loses again, now at 2-10. It's early, but since they are WC competitors, I can't say I'm unhappy with the crappy start. Mutts loose, KC wins again, TB wins to get to .500.

The White Sox look good so far. Are they real? Can they compete against Detroit and Cleveland?

2008-04-13 14:21:56
26.   3rd gen yankee fan
22 Right, but I think we were theorizing.
2008-04-13 14:27:08
27.   ChrisS
Eh, it's all April baseball and every team is fiddling with their approaches.

I dislike the media narrative that Joba has to close. But I trust in Cash to do the right thing.

And, kinda neat, at this respective in their careers - through the age 33 season - Jeter has more career hits than Pete Rose (2,356 to 2337). Granted, Captain started a year earlier than Charlie Hustle, but still.

2008-04-13 14:32:33
28.   SF Yanks
I can't wait for Joba to start and throw a gem of a game. Someone should then go back and find all the nitwits who are on record saying he should relieve, and make a video montage of them saying it, follwed by the highlights of the gem. It would be classic.
2008-04-13 14:38:13
29.   wsporter
27 Yeah Ca$h is king and I trust his judgment as well.

This Joba has to close nonsense is just that; they're like a dog with a bone, an annoying little yappy dog that won't shut the 'f' up that is. I suppose if J. Morgan wants to cause heart attacks over at FJM he'll proclaim that "Joba's value would be maximized as a successful front line starter" . . . Well we can always hope!

2008-04-13 14:50:19
30.   JL25and3
27 Jeter will also probably not hang around for the kind of extended decline Rose had. For his last 2+ years in the majors, Rose played for the only manager who would still put him in the lineup.
2008-04-13 14:53:50
31.   JL25and3
6 Man-Ram is hysterical.

Having said that, this whole style of nickname - hell, it's not even really a nickname, I don't know what to call it - has to stop. Either that, or make it mandatory: J-Po. D-Ort. P-Hugh (which would actually be pretty good, at least for Red Sox fans). H-Mats. R-Can. And so on...

2008-04-13 15:01:03
32.   Andre
going to the game tonight. GO YANKS
2008-04-13 16:24:22
33.   OldYanksFan
Weather conditions tonight at Fenway should have balmy 32+ temperatures with a 10-15 mph 'breeze'. Maybe even a few showers so it shouldn't be too dry.

Freakin' ESPN. Couldn't have a day game when there were tropical temperatures in the mid 40's.

Have we ever played 2 weeks into the season with such constant cold and wet conditions? So much for the Boys of Summer....

2008-04-13 16:47:01
34.   monkeypants
33 Don't blame ESPN--that's their deal, Sunday Night Baseball. Blame MLB for starting the season in March and ending in October. If the season started at a normal time, like April 15, then the game tonight would be played around May 1, and the chances of freezing rain would be rather diminished.
2008-04-13 16:50:02
35.   OldYanksFan
34 You want a 150 games season?

Melky out, Matsui in LF. I applaud Girardi for his lineup and trying to keep everyone fresh, but Matsui in LF scares me no end. Maybe it less worse in Fenway, but nonetheless...

2008-04-13 17:01:30
36.   monkeypants
35 They managed not to start so early or play so late, and to play 162 games, in the 1980s. Perhaps they could chedule a few day-night double headers. The players don't like them, but then again, they probably don't like playing in the snow or having to make up rainouts late in the season by playing 28 straight games with no off days.

But all things being equal, with additional playoffs and playoff teams, yes, I would have no problem with a 150+ game schedule. But that is another discussion.

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