Game 76 Quick Recap: HOU 3 NYY 1

The Yankees did themselves a huge favor by coming back to win yesterday afternoon’s game.  They’ve blown more than a few games like that already this season and the failure to win those games is what has them in second place in the division.  The offense no-showing today made yesterday’s win all the more important and allowed them to leave Houston with their heads held at least at normal head-holding position after dropping the series finale to the Astros.

The Yanks jumped out to the early lead in the top of the 3rd, thanks in part to some bad pitching (Stephen Drew walk), worse pitching (wild pitch in the next at-bat), and clutch hitting (Brett Gardner RBI single).  That was all they would get off Houston starter Colin McHugh, however.  He held them to 1 measly hit over the next 5 innings and set the stage for his team’s comeback.

That comeback came slowly and methodically against a pretty solid Michael Pineda.  …

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Game 75 Quick Recap: NYY 9 HOU 6

Well that was an interesting way to win a game.  The Yankees looked like they were going to cruise to a second straight victory after going up 6-0 early.  But Masahiro Tanaka‘s struggles to throw the ball anywhere but the middle of the plate continued and the Astros came storming back before some late-game heroics by the offense pulled the Yanks back ahead for good.

The Yanks have been beasts in the 1st inning this year and they kept that trend going yesterday.  A leadoff double by Brett Gardner and back-to-back walks loaded the bases with nobody out.  After Mark Teixeira popped out to first, Brian McCann took a hanging 1-0 changeup from Houston starter Brett Oberholtzer and crushed it into the right field seats for a grand slam.  Oberholtzer left another change up to Chris Young with Gardner on first in the 2nd inning and Young hit it for a 2-run home run.  Just like that, 6 runs on the board before 6 outs were recorded.…

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Game 74 Quick Recap: NYY 3 HOU 2

Young HR vs HOU

Chris Young, righty masher. Courtesy of Getty Images

There was a large portion of the Yankee fanbase that wasn’t happy when they re-signed Chris Young early in the offseason, myself included.  But Young has been their best bench player by far this year and last night he was the sole reason they came back late and stole a close win to tie this 4-game series.

Early on it looked like the Yanks were headed for the wrong end of a second straight shutout.  They generated a mere 3 hits and 1 walk against Houston starter Vincent Velasquez (great name, BTW) over the first 6 innings and only had a baserunner reach second once (Brett Gardner‘s doubled in the top of the 3rd).  They weren’t swinging and missing as much as they were against Keuchel, but it was a pretty sad showing.

Thankfully Nathan Eovaldi gave them a good start to keep the game close.  Houston got to him in the bottom of the 3rd on a Hank Conger double and Carlos Correa single and in the 6th on a single, stolen base, and bloop hit by Evan Gattis, but other than that Evo was solid.  …

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Game 73 Recap: Astros 4 Yankees 0

Joe vs HOU III

Yankee manager Joe Girardi applauds Joe West for an excellent called strike 3 during last night’s game. Courtesy of Getty Images

The Yankees did end up 5-3 on their latest homestand, which is pretty damn good when you consider that 3-game stretch of butt kickings they took.  They were out in Texas to take on the Astros last night, and Joe decided it would be the perfect opportunity to rest a bunch of hot hitters and play his B-squad against Dallas Keuchel.  Almost impossible to think that that strategy wouldn’t work out.

The game got off to a very ominous start for the undermanned offense.  Leadoff hitter Chris Young (not a typo) singled to open things up, and the next 3 hitters (Headley, A-Rod, Teix) struck out in succession to end the frame.  That was bad enough on its own, but the strike 3 calls on Alex and Teix by home plate umpire Joe West were bogus.  So Keuchel had his A-game working and Joe West was going to make sure the game was another episode of The Joe West Show.  …

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Game 72 Recap: Yankees 10 Phillies 2

Nova vs PHI

The return of Super Nova. Courtesy of Getty Images

The Yankees had gotten WHOMPED heading into this afternoon’s series finale against the Philadelphia Fightin’ Amaros.  Like “34 runs allowed in the last 3 games” type of whomped.  And they had Ivan Nova returning to the mound to make his first Major League start in over a calendar year today, which didn’t spell good things for their chances of ending that trend.  Coming back from TJS is always a tricky process, and typically it’s a pitcher’s command rust that causes the biggest problems early on.  So of course Nova came out and threw 6+ shutout innings.  Of course he did.  That’s just how this season has gone for the Yankees and the offense showed up to support him in a big way to drive a blowout, wrong-side-of-the-sweep-saving win.

Cole Hamels was the Phillies’ starter, which spelled even worse things for the Yankees’ chances coming into the game.  But he was not at his best today and the lineup jumped on him early and often.  …

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Game 71 Recap: Phillies 11, Yankees 6


Are you there Girardi? It’s me, Stacey. You guys lost again last night, but you know that because you were in the dugout watching the horror unfold right before your eyes.

I have something to say, and I am a little scared to say it, but I think it is something that you really need to hear.

Please stop pitching CC Sabathia every five days. He is killing this team and it is time to take him out of the rotation. Actually, the time to take him out of the rotation was probably a couple of weeks ago, but I get it, he’s your “ace” and you probably feel bad about having to call him into your office to give him the news. If you’re worried about doing it, your predecessor Joe Torre, had to do it a few times. Two big examples of former aces who had to be removed from the starting rotation are Mike Mussina and David Cone.…

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Game 70 Quick Recap: PHI 11 NYY 8

Pineda vs PHI

Courtesy of Getty Images

The Yankees lost last night.  They lost because Michael Pineda was terrible and got knocked around by one of, if not the worst lineup in baseball.  None of that is good, but the last time I checked none of us non-MLB players have a great day at our jobs every single time we go to work.  Pineda didn’t have it yesterday and even the crappiest professional hitters are going to tee off on a guy when he doesn’t have it.  Oh well.

So how bad was Pineda’s night?  He gave up multiple hits in every inning he pitched, including the lone scoreless frame in the top of the 2nd, and 11 in 3.1 innings.  5 of those hits came with 2 strikes, so just like Tanaka the other night, the issue was Pineda’s inability to command in the strike zone or locate with 2 strikes rather than throw strikes period,  Still, it’s not a good look to be giving up that many hits to such a terrible lineup, and Joe had no choice but to pull the plug in the 4th.  …

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Game 69 Recap: Tigers 12 Yankees 4

Tanaka vs DET

Hair still looks fantastic. Courtesy of the AP

Apologies for the delay in this recap.  The family is out for a few days to visit and see The Rolling Stones on Tuesday night, so my afternoon was spent entertaining.  Not that you really need a detailed description of what happened yesterday if you glanced at the final score.  Masahiro Tanaka was way off, the Tigers hitters crushed him (particularly the Martinezes), and they put a sour note on the end of an otherwise positive series.

It didn’t take long for Tanaka’s command issues to surface.  With 2 outs in the top of the 1st, Miguel Cabrera singled to keep the inning going.  Tanaka left a 2-1 splitter up in the zone to Victor Martinez in the next at-bat and Martinez took it for a ride over the fence to give Detroit a quick 2-0 lead.  A Didi Gregorius error gave the other Martinez a chance to hit, and he copied his namesake with a 2-run shot of his own on a non-sinking sinker.  …

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Game 68 Quick Recap: NYY 14 DET 3

Didi HR vs DET

Best shortstop in New York. Courtesy of Getty Images

The Yankees were starting to heat up on Friday night when they smacked Justin Verlander around a little bit on their way to a series-opening win.  They not only finished heating up, they straight up boiled over on poor Alfredo Simon last night.  They hammered him for 7 earned runs on 8 hits before the end of the 3rd inning and kept the onslaught going on their way to a laugher of an Old Timers’ Day victory.

The scoring started off harmlessly enough, on a run-scoring fielder’s choice error by Andrew Romine in the bottom of the 1st.  Then it snowballed from there.  Didi Gregorius hit a solo home run and Alex Rodriguez a sac fly to make it 3-0 in the 2nd.  Carlos Beltran and A-Rod each homered in a 5-run third to make it 8-0.  Beltran went yard again and Chris Young singled to make it 10-0 in the 4th.  …

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