I was going to go see the Scranton Yankees take on the hometown Buffalo Bisons tonight but it was raining and about 40 degrees outside. And the stadium is downtown which is about 10 degrees colder there because of the lake. So I opted to skip the game and watch the big club work for a series split. Had Shelley Duncan still been with Scranton, I'd have been there. You have to love Shelley. I was bummed, yet happy, when he got called back.
I thought Mike Mussina pitched OK. Not good, not great, but a pretty solid outing. He kept the Yanks in the ballgame and that's what he needed to do. The offense gave him no kind of support which shouldn't surprise anyone. I really think Moose is going to be an integral part of the Yankees rotation this year. As long as he can keep a 20 mph difference between his fastball and change, he'll be fine. He totally had Dellucci fooled with that change. Good stuff. He really only had 1 bad inning. It looked to me like the Tribe were just starting to figure Moose out. It was probably a good thing that his pitch count was up there. It gave Girardi a good reason to take him out. I'm glad the offense picked up some runs for him to put him in line for the win. Congrats on career win #253. Keep climbing that ladder.
The Yankee "rally" in the 6th was on for the ages. Infield single, infield single, single to LF, HBP, ground out to 1st, ground out to 1st, infield single to the pitcher, ground out to the pitcher. It's hard to believe in all that they picked up 4 runs. Not exactly knocking the cover off the ball are they? But whatever gets the job done. If you can't get timely hits, you might as well get timely outs. Surprisingly, there were no double plays. Not surprising, there were no hits with RISP. I know Ensberg's single to the pitcher was a hit w/RISP, but come on? That could be the weakest hit with runners in scoring position ever.
I was petty nervous when the Yankees had to go to the bullpen. With a 2-run lead the last guy I want to see out there is Kyle Farnsworth. I still can't get by all of his recent mishaps. And by recent, I mean going back to when he joined the Yankees. He's way too inconsistent for my liking. Much to my shock, and delight, he pitched a 1-2-3 7th inning, sending the Tribe's 2-3-4 hitters down in order. Keep pitching that way K-Farns and you'll be back in my good graces. Kyle's great outing withstanding, I was very happy to see Joba warming up. And Joba did what Joba does. Well what he does most of the time. 1-2-3, down you go. Mariano is automatic right now. Greatest. Closer. Ever. The bullpen was great tonight. 4 innings of shutout ball. Definitely one of their finer performances.
Robbie Cano had an absolutely dreadful road trip at the plate. I think I heard Kay say he was 4-32 on the roadie. This offense really needs Robbie to start heating up. Hopefully a little home-cooking does him some good.
If anyone in Cleveland reads this, preferably a youngster between the ages of 10-15, please do
me a favor and if you see that kid that spent the whole game dancing in those "dugout seats" or whatever they are, punch him right in the nose. Watching that kid dance inning after inning was one of the most annoying things I've ever seen. It was 100 times worse than your typical d-bag waving to the people at home while talking on their cell phone. If you ever catch me doing that, you can kick me in my giblets.
Thank God this road trip is over. That was one long stretch away from the Stadium. 18 road games in 21 days. Not fun. I'm sure the boys will be extremely happy to get back to the friendly confines of Yankee Stadium. It certainly won't hurt that they're on a 2 game winning streak. A 14-13 record is pretty darn good all things considered. They ended up going 9-9 on that roadie and they didn't really play that well. The short outings from the SPs. The taxed bullpen. The injuries. The lack of timely hitting. Yeah, I'm pretty happy with where they are right now. Things could be a lot worse.
Peace, love and Pinstripes,