So does this count as a late-inning comeback? Technically they weren't trailing in the 8th, which is what that hideous stat is all about. The Yankees haven't won all year when trailing in the 8th. But they were trailing in the 13th.
Or are they still stuck with the dubious distinction of being the only team in baseball without a 8th/9th inning rally?
You know what, even if they are, they are also the only team in baseball with the distinction of being 1st in the AL East.
The Yankees won in 14 innings, no thanks to the starting pitching, a good amount of thanks to the basehits across 75% of the line-up, a lot of thanks to the As' 3 errors, and a heaping helping of thanks, a la the mashed potato bowl being passed around the table, to Raul Ibanez.
Nova was not good.
"Oh my God, another double! What's the record for most consecutive doubles in a game?"
"6 is statistically impossible. Google it. 5 sounds more right."
"Ok, yeah it's 5."
"That's what I said! I said 5. That's so funny."
Dad was right, because he usually is.
Glenn and I exchanged emails marvelling about the excitement of it all. Well, he marveled on the excitement, I thought the game was making my head spin. I had to transition from watching the game on tv to following it on Gameday while in transit. The game stayed at 5-5 for a while, until it wasn't 5-5 anymore, and it was 9-5.
I'm en route to this concert and I get off the train, walk by a bar, and see that the game isn't over. The Yankees had NOT, in fact, lost the game sometime while I was losing reception.
On the contrary, the rallied. 4 runs in the bottom of the 13th to tie the game at 9.
In my cocktail dress and Yankee hat, I slipped into Triple Crown to watch the Yankees finish off the A's. I know this sounds like an easy assessment to make, but did anyone else just feel like that, despite a season of NEVER coming from behind, that this game was in the bag?
The Yankees have broken our hearts a bunch of times this year, and there have been games when we thought it should be locked up, but they find a way to blow it. And sadly that's happened enough to the point where I stopped thinking the Yankees were going to find a way to win.
But last night, you felt it. Something was different. THIS was the Yankee team we know and love.
Ibanez is the best pick up of the year. Why is that not an award at season's end? There's the all-infuriating MVP award which should 100% be changed to "Overall Excellence Award" since it's never actually given to the player who is most indispensable to the team. So why can't we have a "MBftB award" for Most Bang for your Buck?
This would help all the other "small market teams" (like the Red Socks, right Boston?) get some recognition.
Ibanez jacked 2 yesterday, (pause), the second one being the all-important 2 run bomb that tied up the game after a passed ball and a sac fly put the trailing Yankees within 2 in the 13th inning.
Other game notes:
Sneachiro continues to be all "American Rabbit" badass. Until he stops doing amazing things, I'm going to put a clip of that weirdass movie up. Here's today's helping:
He hits a homerun, and this is why everyone hates the Yankees. Because they take a player hit a little above the Mendoza line, put pinstripes on him before actually deciding what to do with him, bench him or bat him last, and then wait while the pinstripes soak in and take effect. Within 1 month he's batting over .300 and changing lives.
That's what Sneach is doing for NY. Good boy. 3 for 5 on the day.
Of course, as I had mentioned to my dad, no one will mention anything about Arod, despite the fact he went 3 for 6 on the day, and had a HUGE play on the plate, where he somehow managed to make it home safely from second, on a single hit on a line to left field.
"You know, Arod is really a team player," says my dad.
"YES! THANK YOU! HE IS!!! NO ONE WILL BE TALKING ABOUT IT THOUGH TOMORROW."
I mean, why should they? Jeter extended his hitting streak to 16.
For all the talk about the value of being a "team player," this characteristic gets somewhat tempered when you spend so much time lionizing individual records and stats.
Grandy was 0 for 4. He's really not doing well, he's hanging out in the same tugboat as Sub-par Nova right now.
The game was won in a way that say to Brandon Moss, "Shame on you, Brandon, for hitting the ball so hard yesterday and tying the game when R-So should have been untucking his shirt."
Ball bounces off Moss' glove, Nunez scores, game over, thuhhh Yankees win, Nunez beams about how he's never hit a walk-off before. Uh, buddy? I don't mean to be a spoilsport, but you still haven't hit a walk-off. Unless you could an E3 a hit?
As for the pitching, Nova gives up 1023 doubles in a row, lets 3 runs in. Color Swatch lets in another, D-Lo another. But after that, I gotta say I was pretty impressed with the bullpen effort. I mean, even D-Lo and his run-letting-upping didn't bother me TOO much.
I, uh, can't say the same about what Sweaty Freddy did, though. What an idiot. 3 runs? He's on the wrong planet. 2 homeruns. He was pretty consistent in the 3 innings he pitched, though. Average of a run per inning. Yeah, I tried. Sorry, Freddy. Nothing good can be said of your outing.
The Yankees' overall bullpen ERA is pretty atrocious, which is weird, because how do you have a bad pen and still retain 1st place? Guess that's another reason why everyone hates the Yankees. That, and because they have a Japanese guy on their team who does magic tricks where he makes hit balls get lost in the pitcher's shirt. David Blaine-type shit.
Oh Sneach. Then he somehow ends up at 3rd base, and you didn't even know he had had an AB.
The O's, of course, won, despite the Socks putting up a good fight (cannot believe I'm rooting for Boston this weekend. I just threw up in my mouth).
The A's matched the Yanks tit for tat (hehe. tit.) but it wasn't enough. It was enough to pretty much deplete the boys' resources for today's game, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.
Oh, and it bears mentioning that if your name is "Melky," you're not going to have an auspicious start with the Yankees.
But you'll also probably eventually morph into a surprisingly stunning defensive asset.
Someone should point poor Melky Mesa to this.
Outstanding effort, Yankees. You know what that was? EXCITING. That walk-off error was exciting, that win was exciting. The game was trying on the heart muscles, but that moment when the game is yours? That's why we love the game.
I live for this, for MLB,
The rapture and sublimity.
The tension that drenches a full count with two out,
The 9th inning rally that dismantles a rout.
The low-scoring game, the battle of aces,
The 12th inning jam, the loading of bases.
I live for the rush when baseball arrives.
The heart-stopping moments we feel most alive.
The highs, the lows, I’ll take it all,
I live for the sound of the words, “Play ball!”