What. A. Game. That was freaking amazing. I don't care what anybody thinks. Nothing compares to postseason baseball. Nothing. Tonight's game was a nail-biter. I was literally on the edge of my seat for the last few innings. My heart is still racing. Wow. I'm still in disbelief. The Twins have the bases loaded with no outs and don't score. Mark Teixeira then delivers a Yankee Stadium special and gets a pie in the face for his troubles. You gotta love it. The Twins must really hate playing the Yankees. 4 losses on 4 walkoffs. Unreal.
God, where to start? I don't even know. There's so much to discuss. I guess will start with the night's hero, Mark Teixeira. Talk about coming through in the clutch. Mark's ALDS was not exactly off to the best of starts. Then he singles to set-up A-Rod's game-tying jack in the 9th and that apparently opened the flood gates. Next AB, game over. Those were 2 clutch ABs. He also came through huge with the leather. Woo. Welcome to the party Teix.
Teixeira's heroics wouldn't have been possible if not for A-Rod. Alex is having a monster series. A-Rod is 4-8 with 5 ribbies in the 1st 2 games. I think it's safe to say that his postseason slump is over. He came through in the biggest of spots there in the 9th. Wow. Unbelievable. As I wrote the other day, I think Alex is going to have a huge postseason. Did I write that? I think I did. Let me check. Yup, I did. And I'll restate the reason again. I think Alex is feeling no pressure. Not sure if you caught his postgame interview he did with Michael Kay, but Alex in a roundabout way alluded to that. As he said, the Yankees have a great cast this year. A-Rod no longer has to be "the man." I think that's huge for him. Expect a lot more from A-Rod this October.
I still have no idea how the Yankees escaped the 11th inning without giving up a run. That was some magic right there. Marte started the inning and stunk up the joint. David Robertson came in and somehow wiggled out of the jam. I thought the only way D-Rob was getting them out of that inning was if he picked up a K. He's been so good at doing that this season. No Ks but there was some clutch heads up defense. Thank God for Mark Teixeira. I'll be shocked if he doesn't win the Gold Glove this year.
Damaso Marte. Why is he on the roster? Oh yeah. It's to get out the lefties. FAIL.
Brett Gardner. He has to be smarter than that. It made absolutely no sense for him to take off on Damon's liner. If the ball made it through, he could have trotted home. How does he not make sure that the ball hits the ground? I just don't get it. That could have ended up costing the Yanks the game. Epic fail.
A.J. Burnett pitched a pretty good game. He allowed way too many walks though. A.J. issued 5 free passes. He also hit 2 hitters. He's got to have better control. That could have gotten real ugly, real fast. Teams usually score more than 1 run when they have 10 guys reach base. But as I've said before, the good pitchers always seem to find a way to wiggle their way out of trouble. A.J. was pretty good at that tonight. He has dominant stuff. He just needs to keep it over the plate. Overall, a really solid postseason debut for Burnett.
Walks almost killed the Yankees tonight. Two of the three Twins runs were scored by guys who walked. The 2 runs the Twins scored in the 8th started with a 2-out walk. Phil Hughes had a rough go of things tonight. I think he'll be fine though.
Finally, some thank yous.
- Thanks Joe Nathan for again imploding against the Yankees in the postseason. The Yankees own you. They own you all around. In his career, Nathan's is 0-4 with a 4.64 ERA and 3 blown saves against the Yankees.
- Thanks to the LF umpire Phil Cuzzi for blowing that call in the 11th. Mauer's hit was about 2 feet fair. I'm not sure how he missed that since he was right on top of it. That was a game-changer.
- Thanks to my wife for being a trooper. She was standing on our stairs when A-Rod went deep. So I made her watch the rest of the game from that vantage point. Talk about uncomfortable. But hey, you don't want to mess with the mojo.
The Yanks are now off to Minnesota with a commanding 2 game lead. Any momentum the Twins had is gone baby gone. Phew. I was a little worried before game 1 because of how hot the Twins were. Teams that hot are scary. I guess I had nothing to worry about. Game 3 should be very interesting. The Yanks are scheduled to face.....wait for it.....wait for it.....Carl Pavano. Oh man this should be fun. I don't see how the Yankees would let Carl Pavano beat them. That would be a tough pill to swallow, wouldn't it? I don't see it happening and quite frankly I'll be shocked if it does.
2 down, 10 to go.
Peace, love and Pinstripes,