Alright, THAT'S more like it.
I didn't leave work til around the 3rd inning, and as I was watching the game cast on my computer (I just didn't have the energy for the CBS booth tonight), I said to my coworker in my office, dejectedly: "The Yanks are already losing. 1-0. The 1st inning. And Tampa Bay is winning."
"Are you kidding me?"
We briefly turned our attention to work, about concepting, about something other than the flat game on my computer screen.
"Wait, nevermind. It's 2-1, Yanks."
"How'd they score?"
"Jeter, GGBG, Cano.. singles, walks, Swish base hit in 2 of em."
When did watching the Yanks become such a struggle? And I don't mean like, it's a struggle in the sense that it's a pain in the ass to watch them. I mean a struggle in the sense that, nothing is ever comfortable. Or easy.
I HATE admitting this, but lately I've been thinking, This must be what it's like to be a fan of a team that isn't the Yankees.
I don't have that sense of obnoxious entitlement that Yank fans once had the market cornered on.
We used to be able to watch 5-run deficits knowing that even with 2 outs in the 9th, the game was still ours to lose.
Or we could watch 5-run leads and accidentally dose off for 3 innings and wake up to a 10-run lead.
Now, I feel like I once was someone with telekinetic powers. I used to be able to bend spoons and have the remote control levitate towards me when I didn't feel like getting up. Or, more realistically, I used to be able to play the piano like a prodigy. When I was 10 years old, I could play this song like it was cream cheese. I'm not kidding. It was so so so easy for me.
Now? I practice and practice and practice, and I just can't physically get my fingers to move that fast anymore.
I can't bend spoons, I can't levitate inanimate objects (or animate ones, but you know what I mean. I was never telekinetic, just go with the metaphor, please.)
And now I have to do everything the hard way. I have to get up find the remote control. I have to tirelessly practice each singular bar of Chopin, learning each hand of music through rote repetition. I can't just pick up the sheet music and whiz through it.
In short, this is how the other half lives, I suppose.
And unfortunately, I think I'm gonna have to get used to it.
Arod's bat is gone, indefinitely. He hurt his calf, and is it me, or has the entire league as a whole suffered just a complete onslaught of debilitating injuries this year??
Tubbo.com carried them, though, giving up 5 hits and 2 runs in 7 innings. 115 pitches. Ok, I totally support everything Girardi does. He proved himself last year of course, and as such I will not start back-seat-managing or anything. (Like I even could.) But I WILL express profound confusion over his logic.
There was a point earlier in the season when Girardi had every intention of removing CC during a no-no (until he gave up a hit and made things a little easier for the manager). But Joe said even if he hadn't given up that hit, he was planning on yanking El Chunko no matter what, on account of the number of pitches he had thrown.
But tonight, it was approximately 23,101 degrees out, CC was clearly being fat and sweaty and tiring, and he had thrown well over 100 pitches. And Girardi kept him in. What's more, our bullpen has been absolutely stunning as of late. Why so reluctant to hand the game over to the relievers? Why push it in the 7th inning, when we have the lead, when Fatso's facing the W?
I just don't understand it. Someone, please, explain this all to me.
Verlander was ok tonight, and there's another confusing entity to me. I feel like every single time I end up at Dorrian's when Jason is bartending, we end up in a heated debate about Verlander. (Or Joba. Or Javy. Or Angel Pagan. Or Kelly Shoppach. Or the Cincinnati Reds' bat boy. Doesn't really matter. He'll find something to adamantly disagree with me on. Or adamantly agree with me on. In a rather aggressive fashion.)
And, I can't remember what the verdict we land on is. Is Verlander good or not? Consistent? Valuable fantasy wise? I can't keep up. He's like the polished AJ sometimes.
Tonight he was AJ-esque, for certain. 5 walks. 5K's, 4 of which were in the last 2 innings. However, HOWEVAH, this is by no means horrendous, so I'm wondering if Verlander is PMS-ing or something, because his response to his outing was a little, uh, dramatic:
"The only thing I can say is that this is probably the worst I've felt on the mound as a professional baseball player," Verlander said. "Nothing was any good."
Pump the breaks, man. It wasn't THAT awful.
Another weird pitching nuance: D-Rob's scoreless 8th was his 16 2/3rd consecutive scoreless inning. How is this possible? I mean, I'm thrilled with this. But I feel like every time he's coming in, he's threatening to blow a lead. Mo obvi worked the 9th for the save, because he's Mo.
GGBG realllly picked up his game tonight, 2 hits, 2 runs, and a SB in the lead off spot. Jeter in the 2 spot concerns me because of his penchant for double plays, but he looked great: 1 for 3 with 2 walks and an SB of his own.
But perhaps the SB action tonight, while admirable, is somewhat cheapened by the fact Posada stole a base. As my sister argues, there should be some other kind of ruling:
"That's impossible. Seriously. There's no such thing as a Posada stolen base. The ONLY way a 'stolen base' by Posada can accurately termed is 'defensive indifference.' Like, automatically....wait, actually, no. That's not right either. If Posada steals a base, it should be ONLY be called 'defensive incompetence.' That's the only way it can be accurately marked it the books."
Ha, actually the game she made that comment on was also against the Tiggers, a game last April.
Whenever Laird unsuccessfully tried to throw a runner out, his expression upon seeing the ump's call was just priceless. Like it morphed from "OH COME ON!" indignance to "Dammit, Gerald" disappointment to "Yep, looks about right" resignation.
Grandy and Cano both went yard, and it's funny because I think the Yankees almost play better when faced with seeming adversity, such as the absence of Arod. Maybe a few years ago, you could chalk this up to some kind of Arod Curse (vomit), but at this point, it should be accepted that Arod indeed is a well-liked, respected pinstriped brethren, and his absense is something to overcome, not relish.
Just making sure this is clear..
Tex struck out 3 times, maybe the baby is keeping him up. Maybe his batting stance is too ephemeral though. I'm telling ya, he doesn't look comfortable at the plate. Maybe Kevin Long's working with him, but I really don't think they've landed on anything solid, because from where I'm watching, it looks like his stance changes ever so slightly with each AB. Just saying..
Neither team was particularly dazzling tonight, but the Yanks won the way the rest of the civilian teams have been winning: any way they can.
20Ks between the 2 teams, 13 BBs (again) and the Tiggers' 0-4 with RISP was only slightly worse than the Yanks' 2 for 11.
NY's 10 men left on base? Yyyeccch.
Something's a little awkward here. Can't put my finger on it. Am I just comparing it too much to last year's excitement and power surging and unstoppableness? Or is it an actual palpable feeling of stilted play? Hard to tell, really.
But the fact remains that we had to work to scrape out this win, even though it was a 4-run/not-really-close one. The score belies the effort.
TB and Sux both won, so standings are status quo.
We still got 2 more games against the boys from Detroit, and now is as good a time as any to get on a roll. We all know so well how sinister the Yanks have been in the 2nd half of the season HISTORICALLY, but right now, the team tied in first place in the AL East that isn't the Tampa Bay [Devil] Rays is playing 7-9 in August.
Boston and TB are both 9-7.
Our division is embarrassing us.
Act like champions, Yankees. Focus.
And finally, here's the advice I gave my sister when she started Georgetown (right after, "If you're behind a cop car in a drive thru, put the car in park if you're not moving):
Decide what's important...disregard everything else.