Sweet Christ. I kind of thought I’d have a little bit of buffer time before one of These Games came into the mix.
Like, “Oh yeah, you’re the new copywriter, right? Ok today is just gonna be orientation-type stuff, setting up your password, IT policy, etc. Tomorrow, you’re going to be the Key Note Speaker at ASCO. Sound good? Great! Here’s my extension if you need anything.”
That’s sort of like what just happened. ROARRR. Where do I even begin with this one? You know what? This is exactly why bulleted lists came into mainstream play.
(Are you allowed to say that anymore? Seriously, take note: it’s going to be a situation like this. Or this. Pretty soon, my beloved bulleted lists are going to become “M-dashed-Lists.”)
Til then, giddy up:
- This game started at 7, and social was fueled by the rampant Yo Momma-esque jokes (“Yo, this Yankee game so old, it’s social security is ONE. WHAT WHAT!” “Yo, this game so long, there’s some automated woman’s voice blaring an estimated hold time.” I’m fairly confident it was only yesterday that I was extolling the virtue of the expedited pitch rule.
Ah, little did I know that the expedited pitch rule is only a thing if the delays of game are related to the pitcher. Not, for example, related to the lights on the façade that just went out mid game. How does that even happen?
- No offense, Crew Over There, but lightbulbs going out mid-game is probably someone’s fault. My dad never believed in getting mad at a situation. If something makes you mad, there is a human being‘s choices behind it. Thus, you should direct rage at said person. FIND THE LIGHTBULB MISCREANT THAT ADDED 16 MINUTES TO THE GAME. NOW.
- Which leads me to my next point: you’d think I’d be all enraged at this game, but here’s this thing: I’m NOT. At first I thought it was because I was so tired, but then I realized it was because it was sort of the same way I felt, minus the exuberance, after the Giants lost to the Pats on December 28, 2007 (35-38).
It was fought tooth and nail every second of the game, for no reason other than to prove a point. The Giants could have rested, they already were in the playoffs, the game wasn’t going to decide anything.
Similarly, the Yanks could have gone the sensible route and remembered that they have a game in less than half a day, and maybe they don’t want to deplete everyone. No, they fought.
- They lost, and I hate losing, but they didn’t go down without a fight. If this was a 48 Hours Episode, Keith Morrison would be interviewing a detective who would be saying, “No, no, yeah, this one was a fighter. She fought for her life, and that’s why we got the DNA under her fingernails to nab the guy.”
I think we got the Sux skin cells under our fingernails.
In terms of game recap, in the conventional sense of the word “recap,”…uh..
- Well, the Yanks were down by 3.
- Then they scored 2. Headly tied it up with a homerun (what a lovely creature this one is. Odd, but lovely). Ortiz juiced out one to make it 4-3, and it took forever because he never moves out of the batter’s box after a bomb, until he counts in his head “one Mississippi, two Mississippi.”
- But lo, then Tex goes deep to tie it up at 4 (and people were realllly excited about the fact it was his BIRTHDAY and he hit a HOMERUN! On his BIRTHDAY! Of all days!) 4-4 game, until Pablo Sandoval’s supreme lack of metabolism drives in Pedroia in the 18th.
- Only for the Yank’s to come back with Beltran (who I’m pretty sure wasn’t in the game when I was first watching it, but that was nearly 10 hours ago at this point, so who knows.
- All of a sudden it was like he was the only person ever at-bat, and all he did was this.
- But then he drove in a run, and the game is tied once again, and it’s the 19th inning, and it reached the point in the night when I realized that there weren’t going to be enough hours in between going to sleep and waking up that would make going to sleep a worthwhile endeavor.
- Mookie Betts hits the game winner for the Sux, and the Yanks can’t cobble anything together in the bottom of the 19th. Game over. At 2:16am. But here’s the thing: the game was nip and tuck or whatever, but it 100% did not have to be. For either side.
- I’m happy the Yanks raged against the dying of the light (literally and figuratively) with every last breath, but I’m tempering this with the acknowledgement that they squandered away a number of REALLY good scoring opportunities.
I mean, it’s one thing to do the whole leaving-runners-stranded thing. It’s another all together to take said runners off the basepath all together.
- GGBG got picked off. GGBG GOT PICKED OFF. SERIOUSLY. He also got caught stealing! He’s like the worst stealth ever now!
Ok, it’s easy to say this now, but what the hell. GGBG doesn’t get removed from the basepath on those plays, and the Yanks and their fans are already in bed, spooning the memory of their sweet W over the Sux.
Ah, but GGBG took the basepath less travelled. And that has made all the difference.
- Cone’s pitching analysis was really sparkling tonight. I gotta say, there wasn’t a lot of fluff given that it went into 19 F@#$ing innings. I wouldn’t have blamed him for trailing off into a monologue about powdered milk or something. But his shit was on tonight.
- On Headly’s game-tying ding: “Wow. Yeah, with all due respect, what was he thinking with that pitch?” Awesome reaction from the booth.
- Pablo Sandoval is so goddamn fat that it’s uncomfortable. There’s CC. There’s Prince. And then there’s this.
Ok, clearly I could talk about this game for twice as long as it actually lasted. And honestly, if the next one wasn’t at 1, I would. I’m very interested to see how this next one plays out.
Cheers to kicking off the rivalry in style, if not substance, Yanks. I found the entire evening “encouraging.” And that’s the last time you’ll hear me go all communist everyone-wins-no-matter-what-the-score!-mentality.
Oh ps, the pitching was excellent. EXCELLENT. On both sides. No kudos to Dickey, since, well, he’s a knuckleballer. That’s like showering the plaudits on when a chick has long luscious hair. Yes, technically she grew it herself, but it’s not like it took anything out of her to do so.
So, yeah, aside from that lay-z-bones, I was suitably impressed by the majority of the 627 pitches thrown tonight. It’s almost 5am. See you in a few hours, Yankees! And don’t forget:
Numquam salve quid pro reditu.
Which is a big deal because when you’re almost 7 ft fall, to have that much class density is quite an accomplishment. Seriously, show me a pipsqueak stature who was the picture of social graces—and
I’ll show you an unimpressed face.
The Yankees lost their first series of the season, and that’s ok, because even I, a card-carrying member of the “If You Say Baseball Doesn’t Mean Anything Until July, I’ll Stab You to Death and Play Around in Your Blood, Because EVERY Game is Important” Society
(IYSBDMAUYISY2D&PAIYBBEGiI-S), can’t get too flustered over this.
I attribute a lot of this to David Cone, who entrenched himself firmly in the belief that this was, in fact, an “encouraging” outing from Fatso. He kept saying that to Kay, and here’s the thing: Coney isn’t one of the Pollyanna YES announcers.
He unapologetically calls ‘em like he sees ‘em, which is just one of the reasons he’s cooler than us. The Yanks were down 6-3 in the 8th and Cone is going on about how awesome Tubbo.com’s start was, and Kay is all, “Yessiree, the Yankees have Toronto RIGHT. WHERE. THEY. WANT ‘EM.” And I said, “I love you, Yes Network. You’re perfect.”
The Yanks lost in a very Yankee-lose-to-Jays way, in the sense that they once again played a similar game. You got most of the line up making it to base at some point (EXCEPT HEADLY. Man, what has THIS GUY done for us lately, you know?). And you have the big guys coming up with big hits. (Not necessarily “big” as in “clutch,” to be sure. But big as in big I guess?)
For example, (I’m SOL-ing right now) A-rod. A-ROD! He had a homerun! Remember that guy? He had a big hit to put the Yankees on the board and then right after than Tex did the same thing! And you’re thinking, he come the Yankees!
But then the inning ending, and the scoring ended, too. That tends to happen when you go 1-9 with RISP. Yeah, it should be noted that the game between the Yanks and the Jays was comparable (isssshh) with the very significant exception of the Jays going 3-6 with RISP.
Hey, you know what else? I’m gonna venture to say with an N of 3 that Toronto has a pretty decent pen. Maybe Toronto will be the “sleeper” team this year for a change. It’s weird how they’re always tagged as this unsuspecting dark horse in the running, when from where I’m standing, they should really be the Hawks, not the Ducks.
So, the NEXT game for the Yanks is against the BIGGET RIVAL IN THE HISTORY OF SPORTS. And don’t care if everyone rolls their eyes when they say that, because for the rest of my life, I will always get giddy about baseball ESPECIALLY when it’s a weekend, and ESPECIALLY when it’s against the Red Sox.
If you watched the game tonight you could see that it was not a great crowd in the stands, and for good reason since it was raining and cold. It’s hard to get fired up about shit in that type of situation. But when you got a weekend game, you have the luxury of drinking yourself into that kind of fever pitch.
And when you’re playing YOUR BIGGEST RIVAL, you have the perk of being fueled by rage.
We’ll get ‘em next time boys. I have a feeling the Yanks will be making handiwork of the Sux this weekend.
Magic number is 161! Right? 1st win of the season. First time also I had to compete with a Mets fan in a household for game watching privileges. Whatever, they lost, and the Yanks won!
And so the season starts.
I’ll go ahead and say it right now that it wasn’t exactly a seamless trip to the W. It was less like an Acela trip from NYC to DC, and more along the lines of any flight that goes through O’Hare—it’s a maddening experience, angering, depressing, deflating…but then all of a sudden, you’re on the plane and en route home, and you’re happy because no matter where you’re flying to, it’s not that long a flight.
And you wonder why you ever got so agitated in the first place. I mean, look at all the dining and shopping options O’Hare has to offer. You got a whole slew of shit in the 8-hours it took for the plane to finally take off, and now you’re able to get the ball rolling on your journey. So you shake it off and concentrate on that.
The box score belies the reality of the game, in that you’d think a 4-3 game with such an anemic Hit Column would be indicative of some pretty sharp play. I’d go ahead and say it was kind of the opposite of that.
I didn’t see a WHOLE lot of defensive pearls there, but then again, the Web Gems on MLB Tonight are galatically amusing this time of the season. (Oh wait you know who had a good play? GGBG. Of course. A nice neat sliding catch that he made look zippy and fun.)
But for most part, in league as a whole, everyone is playing like they just got called into a meeting that they weren’t planning on attending. You can throw in a couple of “Wait, can we go back to the last slide for a second?”’s and get some gold stars, but when it comes down to it, you’re gonna have reacquaint yourself with the agenda. Sooner rather than later.
You know how I know this? Because none of the Yankees really scored in way that wasn’t akin to scratching on the 8 ball. This means their runs were “manufactured” by some a fell-off-the-back-of-a-truck supplier, aka a wild pitch, a HBP, and an infield single by Headley.
Even that third one counts as a ridiculous way to score, because really? Headley? Didn’t this guy teeter around in San Diego for a middle-management-accountant esque of a career? Sure, why not. Welcome aboard, Headly. Don’t let it go to your Headly. Yes, I said it. Sigh. Whatever, if Teixeira’s allowed to be all “What, I don’t hit until June, that’s just who I am, man!” then I’m allowed to ween into baseball recap writing pun exploration.
That said though, Tex HAD a hit today, along with Drew, Jacoby, and this Headly guy (who had 2, a big RBI and a palpably surprised interview on the YES post-game.) Pineda looked as shady as he ever did. You know how AJ was our token wild card, whose tats and blithely trailer trash essence made for some uncomfortable viewing experiences?
And by that I mean that any time the ball left his hand, even if he had been pitching a scoreless game til then, I’d still anticipate the likelihood that the ball would somehow end up somewhere it shouldn’t be. Whether that place is over the left field wall, or in the visitor’s dugout, or wedged in some fan’s ear canal somehow.
Ok, so yeah, you know that feeling?
Well it’s sort of similar to that with Pineda, only instead of having the expectation of toothlessly piercing wild pitches coloring the outing, there’s more of a sense that Pineda is like a pet tarantula. “You can hold him! He doesn’t bite!” Yeah, as far as YOU know. He seems awesome, but I don’t know if I now or ever will trust Pineda to not go all rogue on me. Oh yeah, ps he did a good job today.
A smattering of hits, but it was good enough to lead us to Andrew Miller. I gotta say though, I like this guy. He’s not half bad. And the best part is, he’s not anywhere near good enough for Mo comparisons to come out. Not that anyone is, but I couldn’t stomach the thought of another year of hearing things like “Who will be the next MO? Robertson? Betances?”
Yeah. Betances. He’s on track to pick up exactly where Mo left off. Delin Betances.
I shouldn’t make fun, he got the W today. He followed Chris Martin, and the Coldplay jokes notably ebbed. As far as the Jays go, well, they played almost the same game as the Yanks, except with 1 less run. Seriously. Think about it. I bet some Canadian blogger somewhere is writing the same things as me right now, except more politely and with more focus on metrics. And hockey.
So there you go. WIN 1. The start of big things for this team, yeah? It sort of feels like the sequel to any sports movie, in the sense that if there’s a sequel, that means that the first one was dynamite, which means the good guys probably won it all in the end.
But then the sequel comes out, and since they can’t get the entire cast to come back for the sequel, you’re looking at an almost completely new team that tries faithfully to retain the spirit of competition and tenacity that characterized the first movie’s Sport Team That Went All the Way.
Here’s the good news though:
Sequelam fere desinit bene.
Another piece of good news is that this shortened time between pitches thing is moving the game along pretty swimmingly (based on an N of two of course). Another game that went under 3 hours. On the one hand, I kind want this to attract people who are all “Baseball’s boorrring” but on the other hand, I think, “To hell with you. You can’t beat the clock. You can’t beat baseball. You can’t be my friend.”
See you Thursday night, when ROUND BOY TAKES THE MOUND!!! (on a side note, Fatso took over Jeter’s locker a la a coworker takes over the mini fridge of a coworker who quits. No surprise here, he wanted the locker closer to the player’s lounge. Oh my God, can you be any lazier? Amazing. I like his style.)
Well, ok, so there were a few kinks in the game. But nothing I wasn’t totally unprepared for.
Actually, the biggest surprise to me was the A-Rod reception. It was almost like the judges on American Idol or something, right before the token Susan Boyle/Paul Potts/homely plain jane opens up to shower the cynics with their golden pipes.
So it was the first opener in a loooonngg time without one of the Core Four. And for the first time in, like, ever, I felt a twinge of the apologetic subscription to the Seinfeld theory.
C’mon, let’s call a spade a spade, here. When you watched today’s game (or listened to Sterling/Waldman, as the case may be), tell me you didn’t feel this stymieing mix of hope, confusion, and nostalgia. Then, maybe because I’m Catholic, maybe because I’m a chick, I felt guilty about that, because “CMON! THIS IS YOUR TEAM! FORGET ABOUT THE GUYS WHO AREN’T ON THE FIELD ANYMORE, AND LET’S PLAY BALL.”
The Blue Jays didn’t seem to skip a beat, seeing as they’ve been inexplicably knocking the ball all over the continental United States for the last 3 seasons. Encarnacion and Travis both went deep, which actually wasn't THAT bad, but since for the last few months, I've seen no one take anyone deep (because there was no baseball), 2 seemed like a lot. Plus, every fan has carte blanche to overreact to everything on Opening Day, and I'm taking that privelege and running with it.
I mean, Tanaka actually seemed pretty sharp in the beginning, but doesn’t everyone? No one shows up on your first day of work dressed like a slob. You put your best foot forward and wear a suit and tie. Tanaka just switched to creative department attire a little more quickly than we would have hoped.
He got taken out after 4 innings, which was probably about an inning and a half too much. 6Ks, 2 BBs, 5 hits, 5 runs. It was superbly lackluster. Not terribly blow-you-away knocked around, which for some reason made it even worse. Like, if you’re gonna ruin opening day, at least be epic about it.
To add insult to injury, the Yankees were getting whiffed by a fetus. A-Rod came to the rescue by getting on base, and boy was he happy about this. Good on you, buddy. Keep up the strong work!
McCann finally got a hit off Hutchinson, and then a rally looked like in was in the works, but then it cartoonishly was over before it began. I say cartoonishly because when you see play like that, the only things that come to mind are: tuba decrescendo noises, anvils, balloons popping, bodies deflating, and things running full speed into brick walls.
Gardner funly enough went yard, and I’d love to just bite the bullet and put him in the 4 spot. Why not? Arod’s in the 7 spot, and pound by pound, I’d have given a LOT to be a fly in the room of that talk. “NO POUTING THIS TIME. Ok? Are we clear? Say, ‘Yes, Joe, we’re clear.’”
In terms of non-hitting items, our SS Gregorious was caught stealing, our 3B had an error, and the team as a whole took 37 fewer pitches than the Jays, and scored 5 fewer runs than them. Toronto scored 6 runs on 6 hits and 167 pitches. Also, the Yankees reliever was named Chris Martin, and the booth let the Coldplays on Words go on a touch too long.
You know what though, I think we should all embrace the new Yankee squad in the same optimistic gusto that Sterling is. He’s not looking at it as a team that lacks the Core Four, he’s looking at it as a whole weekend’s worth of brainstorming Homerun calls!
Welcome back, baseball. It was the longest winter of my life, but it’s beyond comforting to say and embrace the same words I do on this day every year.
Yankees erit vincere patrocinium.
So, yeah, I’ve been about as prolific as that elf in Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer who wanted to be a dentist. (Not for nothing, but Hermey had a decent labor suit in his back pocket if the whole med school thing didn’t pan out.)
Yep, you guessed it, I’ve been using this time to study orthodontics!
And still, never ceases to awe me (as evidenced by the fact he took 15th out of 150 in a poker tourney at Foxwoods last week. WHAT WHAT. I like to brag about my dad because he makes me proud to know him.)
Okay, that said...But I digress (ah, I missed typing that.) From what I'm digressing, I'm not quite sure, but historically, if I'm blogging, I'm digressing, so I'm playing the odds here.
I figured I’d poke my head in, amid the Non-Yankee-Playoff, since I made a field trip to the Mothership today. It was sort of like making a pilgrimage to the old drinking haunt that you havent frequented since, oh I don’t know, the manager skipped off to sail the high seas. And you’re thinking, “man, I wonder if anything’s changed in my absence.”
Yeah, I entertained the notion that the Yankee Clubhouse changed in my absence. ßeither I’m rusty, or that sentence is impossible to construct with the connotation of sarcasm I’m aiming for.
(HOWEVAH, they don’t sell the worn in blue fitted Yankee caps no mo’! Double U Tee Eff, How is anyone supposed to establish him or herself firmly in true fandom if his or her hat is impossibly color-saturated?? Also—apparently using “impossibly” to modify color made a dominant showing in the Pollina punnet square.)
|Not impossibly brown, Mom, since they exist.|
My trip to the Yankee Clubhouse was not without incident as the entire freaking block was taped with crime scene tape. You can imagine my excitement since my first thought was Dear Diary, I’ve finally walked onto a Law & Order set! Love, Kris. As my fellow traveller Marty rightly noted, “Yeah you need a lot of juice to be able to shut down Times Square in themiddle of the day.” True dat.
I don’t think even Mariska Hagartay has that kind of clout, but someone threatening to jump off the top of Madam Toussad’s Wax Museum does. Yeah, that’s right. The tourists for once had their cameras aimed as an actual thing, as opposed to a skyscraper. And as a result, there was no way to get to the Yankee store. After all my years of toiling away in Zelda labyrinths, even I couldn’t find a way around the crime scene tape.
(Crime scene tape has been like the red rose petals of American Beauty…seems to keep quasi-poignantly popping up. And by quasi-poignantly, I mean an N of 2. Today, and also a few weeks ago when I tried to scare whoever was breaking onto my roof with this well-thought out ploy.)
The guy on the roof didn’t jump. He was up there for about 2 hours, and he was talked down. That was good.
|Excitement like a monkey in jello.|
Hopefully, I’ll be back in action in about 4 months, but until then...
Novi Eboraci , vix potest ad consilium ante.
Interdum non mihi molestus.
Interdum non mihi molestus.
The Yanks win by a hair, thanks to some clutch plays from Beltran (a homerun), Nova (outstanding outing), Sneach (who sneached a ball out of the air when Ortiz hit a long shot and did a premature obnoxious pause at the plate), and Cervelli (who SuperMario'd to first and drove in what ended up being the winning run).
Farrell got thrown out for breaking the rules when he argued the replay ruling. I mean, c'mon guy, everyone knows this.
Jacoby made a great, albeit possibly unnecessarily embellished, catch to end the game. Shawn Kelley struck out Carp with bases loaded to end the 8th, and Girardi made more walks to the field mid-inning to check out hurt players.
Even the announcers were like, "Yeah, how many times do you think Joe's done that in the last few years?"
And then, "Now he's just gotta hope that McCann stays unhurt, since he's down to 1 catcher."
Cut to a few innings later when McCann gets a zinger in the hand, probably broke it, who knows.
The announcers then something along the lines of "And unbeknownst to Dean Anna, he's the emergency backup catcher."
Ha! Is this like a surprise clause in his contract? Like "Heretoforth signer agrees to an undisclosed clause of emergency situation nature e pluribus habeas corpus mens rea etc ad nauseum. Fin."
I would have loved to see a "DEAR ANNA! THROW ON SOME GEAR AND GET BEHIND THE PLATE AND DON'T ARGUE BECAUSE YOU'RE THE EMERGENCY CATCHER EVEN IF IT UNBEKNOWNST TO YOU BECAUSE LISTEN UP BUDDY, IT'S NOW OFFICIALLY KNOWNST."
That didn't happen though.
So, the boys pull out a W and get the day off tomorrow, and I hope they use it productively, ie doing trust exercises and ice breakers and other assorted games of "getting-to-know-you" ilk.
Because as funny as it is in movies to watch a group of unrelated misfits band together to overcome the odds and realize the sum is greater than the parts or whatever...I'm not on board unless I see a montage.
Da mihi montage, aut da mihi mortem.
The whole game was sort of like watching a movie or something. Or a Central Park softball game.
|John Lackey/Gomer Pyle/Terrifying|
Unless I said something like "It's nice that the Yankees got rid of his lazy ass." But that doesn't sound like a sentence I'd say, so I'm sticking with my original claim.
The Yankees went old school and won with the long ball. 5 bombs--2 from McCann, the rest from Beltran, A-So, and Kelly Johnson.
(Kelly Johnson can now be added to the list of players whose name is for some reason always said using both first and last names.)
Only one Sock went yard, and it just really wasn't their day.
Farrell tried to overturn a call in the 8th, and I'm sorry, but when I was trying to wrap my head around the whole instant replay thing, I thought you weren't allowed to use a challenge after the 6th inning?
Don't you lose your challenge in the 7th inning? I'm almost positive that's what I read somewhere.
Or they remembered that there was no challenging after the 6th?
Whatever, it was a good day for the Yanks. The only real glitches were A-So dropping an easy one in the first play that came his way. Also, I hate to stay this, but I wish there was a little more team chemistry. I never understood when in business it's cited as a bad thing to not have team chemistry. I get that it's desirable, but if the work's getting done right, who cares?
But now I get it. Sort of. I'd rather have the Yankees even if they don't really know all the names of their teammates yet, than have the Red Socks who equate idiotic irreverance with victory.
Tomorrow, the Yanks pit Nova against Felix, and based on their performance so far this year, it could be a little like watching a WNBA game..
Ego vellem vincere quam ut aut excitant.