Heaven of Hogs.
Providing HH involves my bed, an obligation-free Saturday night, a stim machine, and the company of my cat. That was all I needed. It was like the MLB schedulers were trying to make up for the weeks of west coast games that got the ball rolling on my undoing. And so to make nice, they had today's game at 7:05 instead of the expected 1:05.
I mean, don't get me wrong, I like lazy day games as much as the next guy. But when I wake up in the middle of the day, I hate knowing that I've already missed the beginning of the game. It also is like a barometer of how useless I am, the number of innings I've slept through. But when I can watch the whooole game, I feel like a productive member of society.
Yeah, I don't know.
2 sac flies were the first runs of the game, for both teams. Meh, it's kinda like having field goals start a football game. Kinda boring in the opening minutes, very exciting in the closing ones.
Arod commented that the Yanks basically "stole" the game, and I'd agree with that. "[The Rays] were pretty much in control the whole game," he said. It's weird because I got the same impression, and I couldn't figure out why.
My buddy wasn't in YES coverage region, so I texted him that he was lucky he wasn't watching because the Yanks were letting the game get away from them. I don't know why I thought this. It was 3-1, but it felt like 10-1.
I blame the Trop, that place is terrible.
Tex's 2-run blast tied the game, but Matt Joyce's 2nd homerun in as many days (Where the hell did this guy come from??!) quickly erased the tie.
Swish homers to tie it up again, and I was pretty excited. I thought it was gonna go into extras and we'd see some fireworks. (It's funny because Kay was saying, "how every game with these 2 teams feels like a playoff atmosphere." Which is TOTALLY preposterous because there is no atmosphere in the Trop, let alone one of the playoff persuasion.)
Arod let Dare-to-be-Great Opportunity #1,209 slip away when he struck out in the 9th. Luckily for him, Cano was there to bail us all out with his solo shot that put the Yanks ahead. Cano is just unbelievable. His swing is poetic, it's probably one of the best I've ever seen.
Kay made some comment about how Leiter and O'Neill have texted him about Cano's swing, but it made no sense.
Arod had some choice words to say about his own cut:
"The way I'm swinging, it's probably going to take a while. Everybody get comfortable," Rodriguez said, smiling. "It's nice to be out there and helping the team somehow. Scored a run. People are asking me about home runs, I'm asking for hit by pitch, infield hit, bunt single, error. The home run will come, I hope. I'm going to be just fine. I think it's nice to contribute. I'm not just not swinging well right now."
Um, Kevin Long, can you please get on that? Arod's one fluid swing that resembled a dophin diving with perfect grace into the ocean, barely rippling the surface, now looks more like Whitney Houston swinging Kevin Coster's samurai sword around in "The Bodyguard." (I know, I know...TWSS.)
Garza, coming off his no no in his last outing, was pretty solid tonight (9Ks), but only slightly more so than Javy, who won big points in my book for going so deep in the game and for not letting stuff get to his head. He looked poised up there. Classy, and battling. I respect that resolve.
"This one falls on me... I had these guys beat, and I just gave it away."
"These guys"? Show some respect, small fry. These guys are the NY Yankees. Geez. Who the hell are you?
Hey, you know who ELSE won big points? THE BULLPEN!
After Javy was taken out...NO HITS EXCEPT FOR THE ONE HIT MO GAVE UP. Yeah, no kidding. Boone Logan (I don't know why, but I'm always confused when I see him coming in. I just never actually accepted him as a real roster addition. He just always seemed more like a guest bartender or freelancer or something), and D-Rob and Mo.
D-Rob got the win, and worked a perfect 8th with 2Ks. That was really nice. Not like generous or sweet nice, but nice in the sense that that's how it should be done. Maybe "neat" is a better word.
A set-up guy who sets up Mo. Not a set-up guy who makes it so the opposing pitcher's closer doesn't even have a real save opportunity anymore because the game has gone from tied to a 492-run difference.
Speaking of bullpens, Balfour is out because he got hurt "wrestling" with the Rays pitching coach Jim Hickey. Or "horseplay" as Maddon described it. This story confounds me. What pitching coach is his right mind puts a pitcher's arm at risk like that? Is he like the Amy Poehler character in "Mean Girls"?
"Hey girls, I'm not like a regular mom, I'm a cool mom. Right, Regina?"
Maybe Hickey's the "cool" pitching coach he lets his boys run amok? I don't know. The Trop is weird, shady stuff going on by the devil ray acquarium tank.
Balfour's replacement is going to be Chad Qualls, which means that the new plan of attack for anyone playing TB is "just get to the bullpen." Qualls is terrible.
(Though I suppose no bullpen acquistion is as detrimental and ridiculous as the Braves getting Kyle Farnsworth. Hehe. Really, ATL? Really? I just don't understand. It's like hiring Madoff to do your taxes.)
And my FAVORITE move in the wake of the Trade Deadline wasn't even a trade or acquistion, but rather a DFAing.
The DFAing of one Chan Ho Park.
Now if they could just do that to Justin Chamberlain, and I'll be sated.
Now would be a good time to mention the people the Yanks DID get at the deadline, which are Austin Kearns, Lance Berkman, and Kerry Wood.
The Yankees are such weirdos sometimes. Berkman I get. Wood, sort of. Kearns? Well, no one can accuse of buying trendy players this year!
So tomorrow Round Boy takes the mound against Big Game Shields. (Why is Shields called that? Also, why is Berkman's nickname Big Tuna? I love this, LOVE this about him, because it brings to mind images of Andy Bernard sauntering into the clubhouse randomly assigning nicknames to players.)
GREAT game tonight, Yankees! Way to rally and take control of the game and win and be awesome. What, I'm happy. Positive reinforcement, etc. WAHOOOO!