Game 156: Red Sox 2, Yankees 4

Needing just one win to clinch the AL East crown, the Yankees had the opportunity to do so, not only at home, but by sweeping bitter rival Boston with their 100th win of the season. After being pushed back an hour due to rain, the Yankees and Red Sox took the field and locked into a close battle. Both pitchers kept the offenses limited, but in the end the Yankee bats came through with the 4-2 victory and some champagne to pop open.

Pettitte got a quick two outs to start the game, but gave up a double to Jason Bay and walked Kevin Youkilis. After walking Ortiz, the bases were loaded for Mike Lowell who sent a hit back at Andy, which deflected off his foot and let Bay score, giving Boston the 1-0 early lead. Pettitte found himself in trouble again in the third, with Bay and Youkilis singling and Ortiz walking. Lowell grounded into a double play, but Bay scored and Boston had built a 2-0 edge.

The Yankees got that run back quickly, as Melky Cabrera started off the bottom of the third with a solo shot to right field. The Yankees had a chance to pick up another run in the fifth, when Swisher led off with a double. He got to third on a pop fly, but the umpire called him out for leaving early. Replays showed the Swisher had definitely not left early. Melky followed with a single, which would have scored Swish, but instead the Yankees remained down 2-1.

In the bottom of the sixth, the Bombers finally broke through. With two outs, Teixeira singled to center. Alex Rodriguez followed with a great at bat. He made Byrd throw ten pitches before he drove a single to center. The Red Sox then pulled Byrd for Takashi Saito. A wild pitch by Saito allowed the Yankee runners to move up and Matsui slapped the ball into right, dropping right in front of J.D. Drew and plating Teix and Alex, giving the Pinstripes the 3-2 lead. Teixeira would start off the eighth by sending a solo homer to right for some insurance, but Mo wouldn’t need it. Despite giving up a single and getting another runner on due to a fielding error by Cano, Mo closed the game out, getting Ellsbury to ground back to him for the final out of the game.

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Continue reading Game 156: Red Sox 2, Yankees 4

Joe Mauer: Dream or Reality?

From Charley Walters (TwinCities): Joe Mauer, despite catching regularly for the Minnesota Twins and missing the first 22 games with a sore back, still has 179 hits this season — without steroids. That’s just two fewer hits than Barry Bonds had in one season during his 22-year major league career. The most hits Bonds had in one season was 181 in 1993 for the San Francisco Giants. Mauer is not only leading the American League in batting average (.371), but in on-base percentage (.442) and slugging percentage (.606). Mauer, 26, can become a free agent after the 2010 season. When Continue reading Joe Mauer: Dream or Reality?

Let the clutch debate begin…

From R.J. Anderson (FanGraphs): With that in mind let’s address the topic before the headlines do.Alex Rodriguez does not hit well in the playoffs His career wOBA in the regular season is .412. His career post-season wOBA is .368. Relative to his standards he doesn’t hit well in the playoffs. He’s been the invisible man with the Yankees Let’s drop wOBA for a moment and simply look at his playoff series lines in pinstripes: 2004 ALDS: .421/.476/.737 (21 PA) 2004 ALCS: .258/.378/.561 (37 PA) 2005 ALDS: .133/.381/.200 (21 PA) 2006 ALDS: .071/.071/.071 (14 PA) 2007 ALDS: .267/.353/.467 (17 PA) You Continue reading Let the clutch debate begin…

Your 2009 AL East Champs: The New York Yankees

Although part of me was hoping the Yankees would clinch tomorrow so I could watch it live, I must say it felt great to finally take the division back. And to do it by sweeping the Red Sox, locking up 100 wins, and the best record in baseball, well, that just makes it even sweeter. I think it’s safe to say that, with consecutive series wins against the Angels and Red Sox, not to mention their domination this year of the Tigers and Twins, the Yankees are in the heads of the other playoff teams (and not, as we often Continue reading Your 2009 AL East Champs: The New York Yankees

Joba Will Rise to the Occasion

Do I know for sure what the heck is going on with Joba Chamberlain?  No.  Let’s get that out of the way before I pretend that I can actually predict with any strong degree of certainty, what the young man is going to throw from start to start.  That being said, however, I just happen to have a crystal ball in my desk drawer here, somewhere…. ah, here it is!  Actually, it’s a paperweight-snowglobey thingie, but it will have to do in a pinch.  Oohh magical, snowglobey, fortune telling, future predicting, prognosticating, pretty, christmasy snowglobey thingie, will Joba Chamberlain give Continue reading Joba Will Rise to the Occasion

Bring on October!

The Yankees swept the Boston Red Sox this weekend, and in doing so clinched the AL East title for the first time since 2006. After settling for the Wild Card in 2007 and missing out entirely in 2008, the Yankees are back where many believe they rightfully belong. It was not an easy win–Andy Pettitte struggled early, even having the bases loaded with no one out in the early innings–but as has so often been the case this season, the Yankees grew stronger as the game went on. The Yankees received their offense today from a Melky Cabrera home run, Continue reading Bring on October!

Game 156: Red Sox @ Yankees

Here are the lineups, courtesy of PA (LoHud): YANKEES (99-56) Jeter SS Gardner CF Teixeira 1B Rodriguez 3B Matsui DH Swisher RF Cano 2B Cabrera LF Molina C Pitching: LHP Andy Pettitte (13-7, 4.15). RED SOX (91-63) Ellsbury CF Pedroia 2B Bay LF Youkilis 1B Ortiz DH Lowell 3B Drew RF Varitek C Gonzalez SS Pitching: RHP Paul Byrd (1-2, 6.04). TIME/TV: 1:05, ESPN. The Yankees could very well clinch the division today, weather permitting. UPDATE – The game will start at 2:05.