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The headlines for this game sound like an Onion article:

Astros snap skid, pound Andy Pettitte in rout of Yankees

Astros hit like major-leaguers, crush Yankees

Yanks embarrassed at home by Astros, lose 9-1

Andy Pettitte implodes in 9-1 Yankees loss to Houston Astros

There was a bunch of stuff that happened on the Astros' end (obviously) and not of lot on the Yankee's end (to be clear), which is maybe not as shocking as it initially appears.

How many times have we seen the Yanks completely BUCKLE against a pitcher they've never seen before? A sinkerballer, in particular?

A lot of times. A lot, a lot, a alot.

And how often do we see the Yanks give Also-Rans their day of glory?

I remember this series very clearly.

Regardless of whether it was totally mindblowing or whether it was unremarkably routine, tt wasn't a good game (for the Yankees. Since they lost.)

And it's a game that probably no one wants to rehash. But, you know, I do get a kick out of reading my journals from my formative years, ie the profound anxiety that would ensue over losing my dad's mesh Redskins cap. Or having to get my test signed because it was below 90%. Or--the worst--the "couple's skate" at the roller rink birthday parties.

And someday Andy will be inducted into the hall, and we'll dismissively wave away these ridiculous outings. Not unlike Joe Pesci does to the counteroffer hick dude in "My Cousin Vinny" at 0:17.

God, I love that part.

Andy gets bludgeoned to death, basically. In a little over 4 IP, he gets tagged for 10 hits and 7 runs. Which, I have to say, looks better than it did on TV--meaning those 10 hits were HIT hits. (Along the same vein as when you LIKE like someone.)

I mean, Corporan's shot in the 5th was just sad. No one even budged after the bat crack. A resounding "Well, that ball got outta here in a HURRY" spilled from the booth. (Even though it didn't really get out of there in a hurry. It was a normal speed, and not even that far of a shot, but it just like an outtake from the Natural, nonetheless.)

I was surprised Andy stayed in for as long as he did, actually. Girardi has been hanging on the coat tails of Lard and Andy's ace tendency to pitch deep in the game, and do it with sparkling results.

But I can't really wrap my head around how you could watch so much as 2 innings of this game and not think that Andy looked about as comfortable as the guy at a cocktail party who saunters up to a few people already in mid-conversation.

And Andy looked like that guy looks when no one stops conversing to acknowledge his presence, leaving him with nothing to do but stand there and hope for an introduction and/or a phone call.

Girardi was essentially the converser. He just let him stew and sweat it out, when a simple, "Oh, hey Andy! Join us in the dugout/dialogue" would have been more merciful.

(Or maybe Girardi is subscribing to the same principle that my mom applies when buying airline tickets. She thinks that if she keeps waiting out the rising prices, that eventually the price will drop to almost nothing. Almost always this amounts to her doling out $800 for plane tickets to Ft Lauderdale in the 11th hour, aka doling out 10 hits after waiting out more than 4 innings.)

Alright, I'm done belaboring Andy's TOTAL IMPLOSION AGAINST THE WORST TEAM IN THE LEAGUE. Even if he HAD pitched brilliantly, the Yankees played like they were in some of kind of Wife Swap-esque reality show with Houston. Except replace "Wife" with "offense."

Top of the order did work: GGBG, Cano and Wells all pitching in 2 hits each. Then 1 from Overbay, and another from Nunez.

I may or may not create a Word macro for this phrase:

"reached on Nunez's error."

Function key + Shift + Backslash key

With Cervelli out, Andy pitched to nubian Austin Romine, and then verrry subtly threw him under the bus. Not really. It was more of a pushing him in front a rollerblader, at most.

"He hasn't been back there, and I felt like maybe I didn't get into the rhythm I wanted to." There was also a ton of frantic waving for baseballs, which makes sense since the balls didn't really stay in Andy's possession for long before they darted all over the outfield.

It was also Andy's 18th anniversary of his very first pitching outing in the Show. He came in for relief, gave up 2 runs on 3 hits in 2/3 of an inning on April 29, 1995.

1995 ERA for the day: 15.36
2013 ERA for the day: 27.27

I wouldn't sweat it, Andy. The 18th anniversary is not a big deal, and I know this because I looked up what the appropriate present is for this, but it just goes from 1 to 15, then jumps to the 20th anniversary.

I guess you get something in between China and Crystal? Cubic Zirconia?

(I like what's listed for the 6th anniversary: Candy/Iron. Too many questions, but the first one is what husband opts for the iron when social mores sanctions giving his wife some Rolos and calling it a day?)

Tomorrow's another day, with Kuroda going up against the most recent member of the Perfect Post Mets club. The outlook would appear to favor our Yankees:

"Kuroda has never lost in seven career starts against the Astros while Humber has been hit hard in losing all five starts for Houston heading into Tuesday night's matchup."

Tomorrow is not only another day, but another ridiculous set-up for a game that everyone is going to think will "surprise" us again. They will surprise people who are expecting to be surprised. But for the realists, things are going to work out the way they should.

Spem praeter spem non posse.

Win. Win. Win. Win.

Look at that. The team to beat was beaten. 4 times in a row.

I apologize for the lack of coverage this weekend. Thursday night I just plain ran out of hours in the day. (Literally. I was still writing a manuscript for work when the sun was coming up, which gave me just enough time to shower, double check the manuscript for any sleepwriting mumbo jumbo that may have slipped in, and get to the office.)

And then this weekend I had to finally finally bite the bullet and paint the apartment. I mean, if I ever want to get a jump on the REAL paint job in my bed room, I'm going to have to knock the living area out of the way first (in terms of getting the paint done. I don't mean actually knocking down the living area.)

Since I wasn't allowed to take this with me when I moved out of my last apartment, I'm left with no other choice than to recreate this. (Actually, that's not true, since there are other choices available, such as subscribing to a more adult decor as opposed to painting my room like that of an 8-year-old boy. Semantics.)

HOWEVAH, I'm going to do the inside of the stadium this time.
Soon to be my room. Not "soon." But within a month.
I hate relative terms.
Which I have a feeling is going to be a little trickier than the last mural undertaking.  But, you know, any excuse to adopt a completely consuming project that will monopolize my attention and waking hours.

So, yeah. A weekend of painting and Yankee games and vodka lemonades.

(I did get to see fellow sports writer Matt Waters play guitar--slash, awe us, bring house down--in the Upper East Side. AND smoke cigars with the great Joe K. We were celebrating what, I'm not 100% sure, though that didn't stop me from shouting to any passerby that "It's a boy!")

Aside from the DL-entry of Cervelli and Nova, the Yankees had a good weekend made even better by the fact it was a 4-game sweep, and made even better than that by the fact it was against one of the infinite "teams to beat."

We got to see a lot of Jeter in the dugout, which was starting to get a little awkward after a while, since it sort of felt like watching the Academy Awards when the camera man darts over to the losing nominee's face after the winner in announced. And said loser is forced to contort her face into an even mixture of grace/expected disappointment/excitement for the winner/aloof yet attentive. It's impossible.

If it were me, I'd just immediately crawl under the table and start playing Snood on my phone until I was sure the cameras had moved on to the next loserface.

Obviously, Jeter didn't crawl underneath the dugout bench. Mostly because he didn't lose anything, and also because he probably has more social graces than me. (I think CarrotTop has more social graces than me, too, though, so that isn't saying much.)

But seriously, every time Nunez did anything (fielding-wise) or didn't do anything (he had like 1 hit for the whole series), they'd cut to Jeter, as if to try to uncover some moment of revealing his true feelings. Did they really think he was going to scrunch up his face in raw jealousy at the site of Nunez making outs at SS like a pro? Or that Jeter would do that gentle half smile of condescension when Nunez would whiff?

No. When it comes to job security, I will say that while Jeter has about as much to worry about as an undertaker in Detroit, the rest of the DL tenants should be as worried as long-tailed cats in a rocking chair store.

Everyone for some reason keeps saying, "Yeah, and imagine how much better they'll be when Grandy and Tex and Jeter and Arod are back!" Maybe not that last part, but you know what I mean.

For my money, I don't care how the Yanks do it so long as they win. And right now, they are doing just that. As such, I'm not chomping at the bit to mess with whatever weird pact with the devil the team obviously made.

Lyle Overbay and Travis Hafner had triples in back to back games.

GGBG went yard for the 3rd time this year.

David Phelps struck out 9 batters in 4 innings.

Joba Chamberlain is chipping away at an ERA that started out looking more like the ticket cost for main level seating, and now looks more like the "handling fee" on Stubhub for said ticket.
Now do the same trimming with your weight.
Who on the team is in desperate need of being relieved of his decoy duties? I mean, the only player who everyone is poking is Tubbo. Seriously. Just because his fastest pitch clocked in at 92 mph.

(I was imagining this being said not by Suzyn Waldman, but by the illustrious Moira Quirk of GUTS fame.)

Arod's decoy is doing a fine job at 3B, and so-so at the plate, but I can't say with any confidence that Arod would be doing much better.

Wells is a beast. I said it last week, and I'll say it again, that this guy is the Carl Crawford we always wanted, but managed to dodge a bullet when he went to Boston, and now we get the bizarro edition of him.

It'd be like if all of sudden my ipod mini (it's blue with a green screen, ~2004) started working again, and not only could it play music, but it could do shit that the ipod, iphone, ipad, and possibly even the government itself, can't do. Like..display flash media content.

And it's kind of odd, because even though all 4 games were close ones, come-from behind thrillers, was like the blood pressure remained at even keel. There's just this very comforting committment to execution, sans frenzied panic.

(Compare that the the Jays' manager who is a nutjob. Not really Bobby Cox/Ozzie Guillen kind of way. But more like a Jack Torrance kind of way.

Very inspired gems from him this weekend:

"Basically what's happening is we're playing good enough to lose, we're not playing good enough to win." (What does this even mean?)

"You want me to go out there and hit or something? I couldn't hit when I played." (Ah, talk about resounding inspiration from your fearless chief. If that doesn't motivate a last place team, I don't know what will.)

"It's frustrating. I'm giving you guys the same comments every stinking day and I'm getting a little bit tired of it. I've got no answers." (Is he tired of the stinking days? Or the same answers? We need more information, John.)

On the other hand, I think the Decoys are causing Girardi to veer into Maddon territory, on account of him being so confused about what's happening here:

On batting Hafner against a leftie: "I just thought today was a good day to do it and he made it work." (BULL. SHIT. Uh-uh. You had a hunch? Stop. You're better than that.)

So the Yankees play the next 5 at home, 2 vs Houston, 3 vs Oakland. I'll be back to daily recaps this week. I can't say it enough how much I love watching the Decoys.

Now they just have to overtake Boston (2.5 games up), but I'm all for pacing yourself. Don't overexert yourselves.

Even though the DL is apparently a mecca of hedonism and utopian pleasure based on its popular appeal, I don't think the Yanks should try their luck with a new crop of Decoys for the Decoys. Let's just keep playing the way they're playing.

Mutatis mutandis.

You know what's great about familiarity with a subject matter? The accompanying intuition that comes with it eventually. Most of the time, that and a subway card will get me uptown. Meaning that it doesn't do me a whole lot of good to know seconds before it happens that:

  • A project manager/traffic coordinator is about to come over to my desk to "see how that manuscript is coming along"
  • A girl is about to have a wildly graceless drunk/heels-induced slip/fall at Dorrian's
  • My dad is about to say, well, anything. We share a mind*
  • Someone's about to sing/play a wrong note
  • The cat is about to go from auditioning for a role as a stuffed animal, to doing suicide sprints back and forth in the apartment
  • AND I know when the panic button is about to be irrationally slammed for some partitioned out picadillo in the Yankees' clubhouse
That's any second now. The Yankees' hitting is going to be called into question within days, if not hours.

Oh my God, can't you hear it already? Vom dot com.

"The Yankees have been lucky so far this season, getting production out of players that are arguably past their prime. But how long can they expect to rely on offense from this line up? Without a young backbone, the argument can be made that the Yankees are arguably playing with a potential fire, one might argue."

No. No no no. This was a good game, except for the losing part. If for nothing else, the weirdness that is Eduardo Nunez is really quite disarming. He's like another Sneach, sort of. To take a line from the Girl Bathroom Banter Playbook: "I have NO idea what the hell this guy's deal is."

Last year, he was like a stock character in a Disney movie who always bungled, always tripped, made mistakes. Like Chunk in the Goonies.

This year, he's made 2 errors (allegedly. I could have SWORN he had a third one in like game 3 of the season).

Last year, he had 7 errors.

In 2011, he had 20.

GAH! I hate things that have no rhyme or reason. Give me iambic pentameter and tautologies any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

Eduardo Nunez is confusing. To say (next to) nothing of the fact he sort of resembles a Dominican  version of Nicholas Cage.
Last year I thought he looked more like a villainous frog from the Care Bears.
Moving up in the world, if "the world" means my head of endless comparators.
So Eduardo Newnez gets one of the 4 total team hits of the game (others came off Nix, Sneach, and GGBG).

And the error actually gets attributed to Bosh [sic], who looked like That Girl that gets put in right field for softball games.

The one hit of the game that inevitably heads her way is a homerun.

Because she will not catch it (if she could, she'd be playing a different position), and the ball will go beyond her (because scientifically, our depth perception is significantly inferior and we'll misjudge the ball to be closer than it is), and she'll chase it, and try to relay the ball back in from Pittsburgh, or wherever it's ultimately rolled off to, and by that time not only has everyone cleared the bases, but they've also updated their facebook statuses, checked their voicemail solely to get rid of the VM icon on their cells, and established democracy in a third world country.

Yeah, YOU, BOSH [sic].

2 runs scored. The Yankees lost 3-0, and none of those runs from the error are looming large etc, because it doesn't matter how many scored on how many errors, if you can't even put 1 run of your own on the board.

That needed to be said, to be sure. Not as an attack on the offense, but in defense of the defense.

SPEAKING OF defense...this.

Dayummmm. Jeter who. (Or I guess "Derek who?")

So this Alex Cobb guy really got the best of the Yanks. 106 pitches in over 8 innings. 7Ks. 2 hits. His full name also spells"Bed Bacon Relax" when you mix the letters up.

Although a full decade and a half his senior, Andy was no slouch, ether. 10Ks, only 3runs. At 40 years old.

(He's one of the best CURRENT pitchers, not just all time, stifling young bat after young bat. At 40 years old. Which is not old, but which is impressive considering I'm 8 years younger and get winded moving wet clothes from the washing machine into the dryer.)

Alright, yeah they lost, but it wasn't a bad game. It doesn't warrant concern or qusstions or examinations or analysis. They didn't beat the Rays. They lost because the Rays scored more runs. But they're coming home! Mercifully, especially the Yanks themselves since I don't think they like the Trop. Understandably.

I also have just about had it with these inane circus antics that Maddon's desperately trying to pawn off as a calculated psychological strategic move. First there was a magician. Then a cockatoo. And now:

Maddon concluded his homestand-long effort to keep his team loose Wednesday by having a pair of penguins, Cliff and Shelly, in the clubhouse before batting practice.

"It's a continuation of our attempt to get our players to chill out a bit," Maddon said.

Christ. Shut up, Maddon.

Same goes for any "argument can be made"-ers who make arguments challenging the Yankees' record, claiming it belies "greater issues."

No. We're 2.5 games from 1st. I'm into this team. A lot. And back home they go!

Si audier ungulis, equorum cogitare.

*I'd be remiss in not mentioning the time in early 2008, when I went home to watch the Green Bay/Gmen playoff game with my dad. Then I thought of something that happened 20 years prior--a memory that was 100% triggered by nothing. A moment that I don't think anyone else even was cognizant of at the time. And I said, "Oh my God, you know what I just thought of out of nowhere. This is completely random." And my Dad replies, "YES. That time after the softball game when the girl jumped out of the car in front of us and grabbed the chicken wire from the side of the street." Yes.

It takes me a long time to get on board with technology trends. I'm always 2 notches behind, ie I'm still listening to mix casettes when the rest of the world has moved on to CDs. I resisted the VHS --> DVD movement for so long that it wasn't until mp3s came around that I finally acquiesed. Same goes for digital cameras, ebooks, etc.

I usually catch up eventually, but not with the iphone. I don't care how many people say "You get used to the touch screen"...I still prefer the tactile joys of pressing keys.

HOWEVAH, now I may have a reason to convert.


I've been saying for YEARS that I wish there was an app, or a suite of apps, that basically help me avoid situations where I walk into a bar, survey the scene, and then have to pretend to get a phone call or pretend to use the bathroom just so I don't look like I'm walking in and out.

For example, when bouncers check IDs, the ages should be logged and then there should be an app that allows you to check the average age of patrons, so I'm not walking into a bar full of people who either are comparing drink prices to those of the Roaring 20's...or people who actually are still in their roaring 20's.

My coworker just told me about the FANATIC APP. Which is GENIUS.

Fanatic is a new social sports app that connects millions of fans and venues all over the world. Fanatic helps you follow your teams, find the best places to watch every big game and share the fan activity with your friends. Wear your colors proud!

Every check-in, plan and share earns you points, whether you’re at a sports bar, the stadium or even at home. Compete against your friends and fellow Fanatics for top ranking in your area.

•EXPLORE: Browse a list of local venues to see which games are being shown and where local fans are gathered. Fanatic ranks every venue by team affiliation so you know exactly the hot spots for your favorite team. For example, you can locate the #1-rated Real Madrid bar in New York City or the #1-rated New England Patriots bar in San Francisco.

•PLAN: Invite friends to watch with you, and share those invitations across social media. We will help you organize and track the best watch parties!

•COMPETE: Compare your points, ranking and fan activity with your friends. It’s all about winning!

It's like foursquare for sports venues!!! I mean, if I'm watching a game, I have NO TIME to mess around with bars, no time to explore the city, and no time to venture into a place only to discover they're showing cricket instead of the NBA playoffs, or--worse--they have a giant plasma tv that's used to just show animated fractals or something, and not Sportcenter.

I'm serious. These exist. It's like meeting a blisteringly hot, charming doctor who turns out to be gay--a stunning specimen but one that you will never be able to fully take advantage of.

Anyways, I need this to be available in noniphone-format asap. (The app. Not the hypothetical gay doctor.) Until that happens, I refuse to deviate from form. I will spend the rest of my sports-watching-days at Dorrians until someone proves otherwise that a better Yankee-support venue exists.

I'm okay with that. But I still want the Fanatic app. It's just really, really cool.

That was so much fun to watch! Maybe not for my neighbors, who have now been officially (or unofficially, since I don't know what differentiates the two) been introduced to the sporadic whoops and groans and staccato claps and spontaneous yeahs, characteristic of apartment 6B during the season.

The Yanks have had extra inning games already, so this wasn't the first "good game," so to speak. But you know how once in a while an unnotable will become notable based on the context? Like someone relinquishing his subway seat can be the most chivalrous gesture in the history of mankind, if you're coming off the heels of a browbeating day.

Similarly, I was real tired by the time I got home. And I wanted nothing more than to just turn on my9 and not use my brain anymore. I needed a pitchers duel, because any more runs than that would have been too much for my mind to compute. (This ability to process big numbers, however, isn't necessarily exclusive to exhausting days, so much as it is basically a hallmark of every day that I exist.)

So I came home sans work folders, avec bottle of wine and avec committed interest in dedicating my attention to nothing other than the game. Also, I came home prepared to watch an awkward mess spearheaded by Hughes and Price, both of whom I considered prodigies emeriti.

I was actually picturing something along the lines of a hockey game intermission when they have a bunch of middle schoolers play a mini scrimmage on the ice, while on dollies. (I swear I've seen this at a Ranger game more than once.) Or better yet, an episode of GUTS (do-do-do-do-you-HAVE-it).

Boy, was I am wrong! Price and Hughes, with a combined ERA that would've been allowed to go to a PG-13 movie unaccompanied by an adult, both pitched sick. (Sickly? I hate using adjectives when adverbs are called for, as much as the next person, but "pitching sickly" doesn't really get my point across.)

The point being: the pitches were stunningly on point. I was impressed. That goes for you, too, Price. Not that I REALLY care if you go the way of Oliver Perez, because, you know, you're not a Yankee so do whatever you want. But I will say that if you keep dismissing your indelible talent. And Maddon, tough love this kid, for God's sake. He's not an overweight sophomore trying on prom dresses, so comments like this probably aren't necessary:

"We don't score enough runs and he doesn't feel as good about himself. That's just how this baseball thing works."

Hey now. No one can make you feel inferior without your consent! Whatever, moving on to Hughes...

Actually, their line scores were nearly identical: 7-8IP, 5-6Ks, 0-2 BBS... both starter similarly nervous and apologetic and self-deprecating. If they were stray cats that I found and took in, I would say things like, "I bet they were kicked and abused in their last home."

The game starts out with the Yanks in a 1-0 hole because Zobrist hit a sac fly in the 1st, but Hughes held on the game. Wells picked him up (Wells!! Can't get over this) with a ribbie in the 4th to tie up the game.


TB pulls ahead, bleh, with Molina's single. But here's the thing I noticed during this play. Yeah, damn Tampa takes the lead, BUT Loney getting thrown at 3rd was kind of like a microcosm of the game, sort of. Meaning that, aside from the weirdly impressive pitching from the two neurotics, the thing that made this so great to watch was the whole Winston Churchhill-ness of it all.

Yeah, that is straight-up my dad's genes right there. (When I was 10 and playing little league, he said to me before every at bat, "Remember, tis far better to dare mighty things and risk failure than to live in the grey twilight that knows neither darkness nor dawn...oh, and level swing.")

This was a 2-out, behind in the count kind of game. Down by a run, Sneach gets on base, steals 2nd, makes it to 3rd on Nix's single, and then is driven home by GGBG's groundout. And in the top of the 9th with the game tied, and 2 outs, Sneach comes through again.

Drives in Cano and Pronk, and just to prove my long-standing contention that he has approximately ZERO idea of where he is, what he's doing, what team he's on, etc, at any given point, Sneach had this to say after the game:

"I just had a feeling I could make it there. It was a steal and I was just running. I didn't see where he hit the ball but I heard it, and luckily when I looked up I saw the ball in front of me."

I don't call him Sneach for nothin'.

Anyways, bottom of the 9th and Mo terrifies us by giving up a moon shot to Longoria in about .42 seconds. Damn. And also, yikes.

That's all, though. Pfft. Game over, save for Mo. Win for D-Rob. Self-esteem boost for Hughes. And more labor-intensive productivity from the Decoys.

Maddon, however, not to be outdone by, well, anything ever, brings this to the table:

Maddon's effort during the current homestand to keep his team loose Tuesday featured a cockatoo, which he had in clubhouse and later on his shoulder as he held his pregame media session. In previous games, Maddon had a DJ play music in the clubhouse and a magician do card tricks, and promised a big animal finale on Wednesday night when the homestand ends.

"Snakes are out," Maddon said. "I will not be in the clubhouse with a snake. Regardless of what people say, I'm not on board with that."
Snakes are out. Got it. You tell 'em! Let the administration know that YOU. MEAN. BIDNESS.

Or better yet, tell 'em this.

Reads like baseball Mad Libs or something. Christ, what's next, Joe? WE GET IT. You march to the beat of your own drummer. You do things YOUR WAY.

But I guess you could only play in the Trop for so long until you finally called a spade a spade and recognized the venue for what it really is, which is a big top circus tent. Girardi should respond in kind, and make a big ball pit in the bullpen.

Great win, Yankees. Thank you for that. Keep up the good work, Decoys!

Bigas ipsum non est realis. Sed uincit sunt.

I just spent the last 5 minutes trying to write an opening line that communicated the fact that this post will be more brief than normal, but every time I tried to construct the sentence, all I could hear were THATS WHAT SHE SAID! and PAUSE! in my head. "This is going to be quick." "This is going to be a short one." "Here's the quick and dirty version of the game." Grumble grumble.

You get the idea. I have to be up at 5am for a meeting in NJ, so I'm going to put a cap on how long I spend looking for obscure links to even more obscure movies that quasi-support a ridiculous analogy that only tangently is relevant to the game. I may or may not actually stick to this plan.

(Spoiler, sort of: Just finished. About to post. I did not stick to plan. I need to be more like Anthony Trollope.)

The odds are actually in my favor, since it was a loss, I guess, and not surprisingly, I'm not as keen on dwelling on it. Particularly this type of loss, which would be one in which our lovable Lard pitches like he just signed with the Mets. Also, it's a loss to the TEAM TO BEAT IN THE AL EAST. The list of teams who AREN'T considered "teams to beat in the AL East is considerably shorter, if even existant at all.

PS, they are all teams to beat, because winning > losing. By design.

So, yesterday I wrote about the Yanks' off day, and this performance from Round Boy was exactly the type of phenomenon that baffles me. How does such a talented athlete have a whole day of being off?

I mean, obviously this is not to say that I'm incapable of it. Far from it. But it IS to say that every time I DO have a bad night of beirut or softball or pop-a-shot (I really wish the list of competitive endeavors in my life had a richer scope)...well, it makes me crazy, because none of those games can be chalked up to aging. It just means I'm inexplicably bad for an entire day.

Anyways,'s off day was off from the get-go, as most off-days are want to be, otherwise they'd be off half-days (or on half-days, in a glass half full kind of way). The 1st inning seemed to last for and hour, and the homeruns off our ace weren't just homeruns so much as this.

The type of hits where the outfield looks likes it's playing some kind of game of Red Light Green Light One Two Three. Except they're all on the Red Light phase of the game.

Ok, SPEAKING of inertia, immobility, this, etc...Robinson Cano's homerun in the 4th inning--the only run for the Yanks of the game, and only one of the 2 hits of the day (both by Cano)--crossed into Manny territory.

I said this last week (during the #42 costume party) about a Cano bomb:

I will say that Cano was about half a second away (ok, 0.42 seconds away) from crossing into "Locking Up a High and In Fast Ball Next Time He Sees McCarthy" territory.

Which is to say..well, you know. Pause. Like, a real pause.

Yeah, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt because that stadium is so f'n annoying and weird and he probably got paralyzed while trying to track his shot (thought he really should just be taking off for 1st, no?) But it was a little much.

I only say this because if I were Cano, I'd want to adopt an "aw shucks, just trying to help team. Please. Thank you. Ma'am. Sir. Tiffany's Table Manners" type of attitude, in the wake of the whole "linked to Biogenesis" nonsense. For the record, I don't think Cano is on steroids. Seriously. I mean, I think almost everyone in the league is, but I don't think he is. His interviews are too candid. Really doesn't sound like he's lying at all.

Ah, whatever, he can pause at homeplate all he wants. He DID manage the only 2 hits off Moore, so live it up, big guy.

As for Moore: what the hell is your problem? 8IP, 9Ks, 2 hits. Go hang a salami. I'm a lasagna hog.

(Comparatively, our Fatso's line: 7 IP, 7 hits, 8Ks...3 homeruns. I'm not sure I would've kept him in for as long as Girardi did. He was struggling from the first batter. And ended up leaving game after 104 pitches. Just because our boy CAN go long into the game, doesn't mean we necessarily HAVE to have him do it, yeah?)

Alright, so it's after midnight, I gotta go force myself into bed so I can wake up in a panic every 15 minutes for the next 5 hours, for fear of not waking up.

The Devil Rays beat the Yankees, and I think we probably lost our right to quantifying the Yankees' recent success in terms of "won the last ___ of their ___ games."

Oh, also. Vernon Wells is a beast defensively. He's like the new Carl Crawford. YES! He is. Only he's old. I guess that's not irony so much as an oxymoron.

Jayson Nix=great job at 3rd. GGBG=great ABs, despite no hits.

It wasn't an off day for the Yankees, just Tubbo. The hits were hit hard albeit hit hard in the vicinity of ready fielders--mercifully, no one in the booth said, "Well, you can't ask for a better than that."

So, just as yesterday was a very Sunday-esque game, this was a very Monday-esque game. Which doesn't make an abundance of sense since both teams were playing on Monday, but only one team had a Monday-esque game. I don't care though. About the Monday-esque thing, not the loss. I care about that.

But it's Tuesday now technically, so let's move on. To the fallen prodigies. To Hughes v Price. Which doesn't even sound like a pitching matchup so much as it sounds like a court docket for a civil litigation suit or something. No plea deals. Just deal, Hughes. (See what I did there. Tuesday-esque.)

Est vicis pro Tuesday veneficus. Nullus postulo esse dramatic.

The whole concept of having an off day is weird to me. Not that I expect everyone to be on all the time. You can't hit a homerun every time you get up, etc. (Can you? Why is this impossible? Because it's never been done?)

But it's the idea of having a whole day where you're off. What happens to make it that way? And what makes Ivan Nova think that today was an "off" day for him? I mean, he hasn't had an "on" game since August of last year. So I'd venture to say that this game was very much "on" for him, and that his "off" day is whenever he deviates from form.

He is consistently inconsistent, I guess. I mean, AJ Burnett pretty much had the market cornered on on and off days. It was his thing. Fatso has off days sometimes but we're always sad and surprised to see them happen. A whole day of being off for a normal/non-athlete person can almost always be attributed to a hangover. What are athlete's excuses? Stress? GAH!

Nova was pitching like a little leaguer who will throw a strike and then the parents in thes stand give him encouraging claps and cheers etc, and then it'll take him another 12 pitches to be able to find the strike zone again.

The Jays scoring began with a throwing error from Nunez. There we go. I knew Nunez was going to roll a 7 any minute now. Then an inning later a sac fly from a Japanese player I've never seen or heard of before the 1st inning when he scored, puts the Yanks down 0-2.

Everything looks shaky. Well, except for the hitting. Almost everyone contributed a couple of hits. Except for Pronk, Sneach, maybe Nunez, too. I feel like Chris Stewart was the only one playing. And I don't mean that in a "he was the only one who showed up" or "he was the only one who played WELL."

I mean that in a "I feel like he was always up and always in the middle of a play and always on base." Which isn't true. Obviously. Actually, I think he had fewer ABs than everyone. Oh, you know what, probably because he had a homerun, which was surprising since he unequivocally assured us in the offseason that he would not contribute offensively.

Also, he had the dubious task of catching Nova's mess of pitches that reminded me of those guns that shoot out t-shirts at baseball games.

For my sister, however, the real standout of the game was Lawrie. "Did you see that go-ahead run for Toronto? That was THE most roided out player I've ever seen in the history of ever. He was like Popeye on steroids. With red eyes. And when he got to second, his celebratory gestures were honestly terrifying."

Ha. I DO remember how he acted after doing something good. And it escalated throughout the game, because by the time Melky drove Lawrie in to make it 6-4, Lawrie looked moments away from sounding his barbaric yawp over the rooftops of the world. That or pull out someone's heart from his chest with his hands, then rip telephone books in half.

Yankees scored with 2 consecutive runs walked in. Again. Second time this has happened this weekend. This is probably not significant at all.

(See? It's because it's the Decoys. If the Real Yankees had done this, it would be leveraged into a complete breakdown of BB vs BA etc, and Bill James would have already invented a stat for it that demonstrates how the Yankees' record belies its true talent. Every time I think the Yankees look good, someone writes an article about a little known stat that reveals the Yankees to be "the worst in the league.")

So, yeah, it was an off day, I suppose. Though, not for nothing, the Jays' starter was nothing to write home about, either. Both pitchers were making everything floppy. Except Toronto responded with realllly hard hits. Like bullets have left guns slower. Oh, and a lot of this came from the 2nd half of their lineup.

Melky Cabrera, who will never be the same to me again. hit well. But since he is not Arod, no one will attribute every single hit to a function of his sinister cheating and steroid use.

Seriously, everyone acts like the Yankees are Patient 0 in PED epidemic, but Toronto would be a more likely suspect, yeah? Especially since they're not even in America. They don't have the same regulations and/or difficulties when it comes to acquiring the stuff. And I don't know, but Jose Bautista may or may not have dabbled.

From 2006-2009, he hit around 13-15 HRs each season. In 2010, he hit 54. 2011, he hit 43. I mean, when the dumbest kid in the class scores a perfect score on his math final, you can't assume he just studied extra hard. That doesn't happen.

Whatever, everyone's on steroids. I don't really care. Let them eat HGH. ("Qu'ils mangent de la HGH.")

The bullpen was shaky. Again. But I say "again" in a "it has happened recently" way. Not in a "this ALWAYS happens" way. So Nova's so-so day was handed over to a couple of pitchers in the pen who were ALSO have so-so days. Which amounted to the game going from slightly under control to slightly out of control in the 6th.

A bunch of hits. Manufacturing runs. TORONTO IS SOOO THE TEAM TO BEAT IN THE AL EAST. They were shaky. So were the Yankees. Everything had all the trappings of a Sunday that was flying low to the ground. And the Decoys lost 4-8, but like I always say, I don't believe in playing 100% all the time. You get burnt out.

The other half of that sentiment, however, is that you should play just enough percent to win. Which they didn't really do, so I'm hoping the stuff they saved up can be applied to a nice and easy series against Tampa, who, like Toronto, is THE TEAM TO BEAT IN THE AL EAST. vs Matt Moore, who is very adorable until I remember his era is like lower than the legal BAC levels.

Alright, so things were a little off for the Decoys maybe, but it's just an isolated incident, as are all things that aren't the most favorable outcome. But tomorrow is today already, and yeah they wont 2 out of 3, won the series, and looked pretty strong doing so. And as for the Tampa series that begins Monday:

Id est valde on.

Win. Win.
It's not the A's version of Moneyball. They're not trying to get baserunners. They're getting Yankee Baserunners, which are people who run around the bases after they hit the ball and it goes over the fence.

You know what else is different about these games, aside from the fact it looks like a 2006 fantasy autodraft? The Yankees' wins and losses aren't portrayed as microcosms of bigger issues.

If anyone on the team puts up a donut for the day with the Decoy Yankees, it's a little blip in the boxscore, less jarring than an 8th grader's i's dotted with circles.

But if anyone on the Standard Yankees put up a donut for the day--hell, if anyone put up a 1-4, with 2Ks for the day--it gets parlayed into 3-part tv-movie about the Degradation of Talent, Morals, and the Yankees' Legacy.

Every Yankee win is a function of "buying their team" or "relying too much on the long ball" or "they suck." Every Yankee loss is a harbinger of their declining empire of greatness and the price they pay for not cultivating younger farm. Every time the Yankees don't make a play, it's the first symptom of their brittle aging bones.

Now? It's a win. Or it's a loss. There aren't theories or subtext or allegories. There are just very strange box scores, and there is a blithe excitement every time I check to see who the clean-up batter du Jour is. You know that one of these days we're going to see Gardner there. It's happening.

I really don't know how anyone (professionally) writing about these games can do it with a straight face. Or at least with some kind of paranthetical Editor's Note. It's like writing "Posada's suicide squeeze in the 11th was his 5th steal in as many chances." That's it. No comment? No anything?

No one is THAT objective that he can write about the fact Vernon Wells is the leading homerun guy in the AL. Or that the Yankees' longball tradition is being carried out by Lyle Overbay, Wells, and Travis Hafner.

Or that the Yankees are playing some strange iteration of what has been called "small ball," yet produces line scores like these:

The Yankees won 9-4, with 13 hits, while batting 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position. (Friday)

The Yankees won 5-3, with 11 hits, while batting 3 for 12 with runners in scoring position. (Saturday)

What the hell is small ball anyway. It's not hitting homeruns, yeah? It's getting base hits and bringing runners in with singles etc? How is that small? Everything about that is bigger. The number of hits. The number of runners. The duration of the game (usually). The overall team BA. Usually the number of opposing pitchers seen. The pitch count.

Everything is abbreviated in "long ball." The only thing long about it (pause) is the distance the ball goes.

So our long-small-medium sized game of ball is driven by the off-season pick-ups that threw most Yankee fans into a tailspin. Which makes me feel less stupid about flapping my arms and protesting their utility and overall relevance in the world.

Yeah, I will freely admit that at each of these acquisitions, I roared and exchanged, "I KNOW! Are they kidding me??" head shakes with all the other Yankee fans in the office, who--like most sports fans--spent the offseason using Hallway Hot Stove shorthand.*

*One to two word phrases or names said in passing, that substitute for long discussions that require coworkers to stop walking, come to full stop, engage in dialogue of indeterminate length. For example:

"YOUK." Doesn't skip beat in walk to Xerox.
"UGH." Continues walk to get purple pens.

This replaces an involved discourse on what both coworkers thought about the Youkilis acquisition.

Time is money.

And during my own HHSS moments, I had the same grunt response for the each of the "PRONK." "Wells." "Overbay?!" walk-bys.

But apparently, it's true. "Senior citizens, though slow and dangerous behind the wheel, can still serve a purpose."

34, 35, 36. Those are their ages. I turned 32 end of March and I was in bar bathroom, my sister being all "AHH! It's her birthday!", and all the other girls crammed in the bathroom were shrieking, "AHH! We love birthdays! Happy birthday!! How old are you??"


Brief hesitation. Then:

"Well, you go, girl! Seriously, I hope I'm still raging when I'm that old. God bless ya. Seriously, good for you for still going out at that age and just being like cool with it."

Soo..I guess I sort of do the same thing with baseball players, maybe. If you don't get a rookie whose voice is still in the throes of plummeting down a few octaves, then you're a moron of a manager. If you pick up someone who's been playing ball a few years and doing it pretty well, you may as well be playing Russian roulette.

You have the same chances of a 35-year old pick-up panning out on the favorable side, as you do asking a drunk person at the bar to watch your beer while you go to the bathroom.

I'm getting such an enormous kick out all of this. Not the winning, although it's true my tv would be getting all the kicks if they were losing, but the whole "Replacements" movie element of it all.

For some reason I've been hesitant to make that comparison, probably because I don't like it when motley crues of sports team beat well-oiled machine teams, in the movies or in real life. It just promotes irreverance and undervalues organization and cohesion.

Or maybe it's because nothing good can come out of an analogy that calls for weaving Keanu Reeves into the mix.

Whatever, too late now. No one is going to come out and say that they don't want Jeter/Tex/Grandy healthy and back to playing like they're capable of etc. (Ok, and if Arod wasn't Arod, everyone would want the great hitter and fielder that won us the 2009 WS. I don't want Arod back because he makes everyone angry, and because he's like a walking rheumatism.)

So while I'm not going to start hoping the DL starts doubling as a hospice, I like the Decoys. And I hope a movie is made out of them, with Gene Hackman as Girardi. And I want the janitor from Rudy to play some Yankee Stadium worker who pops in scenes once in a while, to have some kind of inspirational relationship with Cervelli or Sneach. He can even use the same lines as he did in Rudy.

Senescit justis modis essendi anni miris. Et ego intentio esse miris diu.

I'm going to have to get a restraining order against every sports site that sends me e-mail blasts keeping me posted in real time on approximately everything. And this whole Jeter Return Countdown Timeline thing is getting ridiculous, even by my obsessive standards.

Would have posted recap earlier if I hadn't
spend 3 hours making this. Been really killing
it lately in terms of "good use of time."
It feels like the days leading up to Sandy when every. single. channel. just gave the same "we'll keep you posted if we find out anything!" assurances, for 72 straight hours, as flash animated FRANKENSTORM logos menancingly zoomed onto the screen to remind us exactly what the central theme was behind all the media hype.

Anyways, so it has been a long f'n past two weeks, and though the Yankees lost in 12 last night, it was a good night. I eventually left work, under the auspices of the whole "Okay, I'll stay for just one drink."

Which, to be clear, I never condone because it's just setting you up for disappointment either way. Either you have one beer and stick to your guns and then you're mad you had to go back to the office. Or you never make it back to the office because you have more than one beer, and then you're mad you can't even stick a simple plan.

But who's going to leave the bar when you're drinking with coworkers on a balmy Thursday in early spring when the Yankees(?)* are making comebacks and stretching out the game into extras? Well, no one, really.
*This looney tunes Yankees roster will stop giving me pause in approximately never.

And so we all watched, and the Yankees were losing. Someone on Arizona whose name sounds more like it should be listed among rare grasshopper classification or phylum or something, hit a homerun on the first pitch he saw.

And the game as well as the night just got weirder and weirder from there. And despite the fact the Yankees night ended in a loss, and my night ended in inexplicably planting peas and sunflowers at 4:30am, I can't say† that I wasn't entertained.

†I don't not judge myself for that double negative. H/T to Alex and his "I don't disagree with that"'s.

Alright, it was exciting to see the 3rd game in a row where the Yankees were staging a bit of a comeback. And I'll admit it, that as much I love watching the Actual Yankees, as opposed to the Decoy Yankees, doing their thang, and being all 4-6 double-play-y, and eliciting the "damn, that line-up is unfair"'s from the booth, and the chemistry, etc.. as much I love inwardly and often outwardly smirking at the fact the Yankees' roster looks like the Steinbrenners discovered some kind of updownupdwonBABAleftrightleftrightselectstart of tricks to get the players they have.. as much as I love that..

..last night I got just as much out of, if not more, a game were the Decoys did their best impressions of the Yankees, in a losing effort.

Also, the game was really f'n weird. Seriously. Some dude in the stands caught like every ball, because he is a nut who is apparently a career homerun ball chaser downer. He wrote a book about it and everything.

(You know what, if you have the committment and patience to sit down and write a book about whatever crazy vocation you've decided was legit, then I think that validates you. Like the chick who claimed she was non-stop hiccuping for a year, who clearly was faking it. And my sister said, "Well, if she has the dedication to keep up fake hiccuping every day, all day, then maybe we shouldn't begrudge her this unconventional side interest.")

Fine, Jack Hemble, or Kemball, whatever your name is, you can be the guy who is good as grabbing baseballs.

2-0 game by the time the 6th rolls around, and still alot of baseball left to play. Though Glenn would always be quick to remind me that the Yankees were running out of tmie. No, that would be impossibe. Unles you're referring to some Yankee who could go at any time.

(Based on the amounf of medical upstates and clinical status involved in ankle PR, maybe the Yankees ARE running out of time. On their life clocks. Broken ankles are serious.)

One thing that has NOT been in short supply, however, is the egregious overestimation of the impact Jeter's return will make. Can't I just watch the Decoys for a while, and when they lose like 10 games in a row, I'll be right there on board with everyone who is doing dramatic falling-to-knees-and-shaking-fists-at-the-sky pantamimes. But until then, then I'd like to try to get on board with the Excitables.

And by excitables I mean Super Mario, who managed to jack another siren into the stands, barehanded. (I love that. Everything Super Mario does--on the field, anyway--he can say, "I did ___ with my BARE HANDS." I think this probably is an asset during Italian-type interactions.)

Super Mario also managed to get calls on catcher interference twice. I sympathize, guy. Sometimes when I'm waiting for the bus, I get impatient so I just start walking to the next street and the bus will ultimately always beat me to the train station, but at least I feel like I'm taking an active, aggressive role in point A to point B transits.

Since the Yanks end up losing imploding in a dud-firecracker-kind-of-way in the last inning, the Cano HBP-turned-K didn't get the whole "AND NOW THAT CALL IN THE 8th IS REALLY LOOMING LARGE!" posits from the booth.

Oh, but here's a good example of this Jeterian Lionization and Illusory Corrollary that's taking the headlines by storm:

From espn, of course:

"New York failed to complete a three-game sweep after learning captain Derek Jeter again fractured his left ankle and will be sidelined until after the All-Star break."

Horribly written sentence, yet still manages to sort of get a point across, which is nearly as torpid as the language itself. The Yankees in all likelihood did not lose on account of a pre-game chat with the captain that made them aware of his extended vacation.

So either the writer believes that actually IS the case, or he just doesn't know fundamental rules governing English grammar. Both are dumb. Neither are going to make me lose sleep. But I will indeed start twitching if someone tries to engage me in a "Shit, man, we NEED Jeter back if we want to hold it together this season. This ain't good." commiseration.

Hi, I! Kobe. Look at you.
And seriously, when you think about it, has there ever been a movie when a sports team, faced with the horrifying nightmare of having to push on when their star player is sidelined for the season, after being the heart and soul of every success for the team?

No. No movie has ever been made where a locker room speech from superstar emerirus doesn't inspire the rifrafs to go out there and give it all they got Nor does a movie exist where, despite giving it all they got, a team still comes up short, forced to accept the reality that they are useless without their star. That, contrary to the maxim, there IS an I in Team.

Alright, let's move on to tonight's game. Which begins shortly. There wasn't much of a dramatic deflation to cap off the game, since it was more a slow oh. "Hm. Yeah, this will be not easy to do." Phelps a little rusty. Rest of pen going smoothly.

Someone MAY want to brush up on the errors-making. Or not-making. Yankees have already punched in 10 errors. Highest this season is 14. In Washington, of course. Whatever, I like this team. I like seeing Vernon Wells in pinstripes, and seeing how awkward the dugout is without their BMOCs setting the tone.

Time for the weekend! "New York Yankees" has no U or I, in terms of vowel inventory. Which sounds like the makings of a missed-the-mark greeting card shoved in the "Romance-Funny" sections of drug stores.

Go Yankees--the Sometimes "Y" team who is not a registered "Permanent Y" class, as that has been largely run and owned by fanbases

Ok, giddy up. Let's go Pettitte. (Pretend I said something about Brendan Morow that was cleverly crafted into some kind of silvery parallel to any quote with the world "Tomorrow" in it.) Thank you..and finallly it's go time/game time.

Quae enim non sanare cum baseball potest nox, non est remedium.

I forgot about that, how the Yankees like to come back when down late in the game. It was awesome. Like when you're in some kind of logistical dilemma involving transport, and one of your friends is like, "Well, I can just drive." To which you respond, "Oh yeah!! Yes! I forgot all about the fact you had a car in the city! PERFECT."

It's exciting when you rediscover some great providence that's always been there. Like getting winter clothes out of storage.

And while I'll take a comeback win over a ride any day of the week and twice on Sunday, I'm going to call it a draw between the comeback and winter clothes. I spent 3 months post-hurricane trying to repurpose my summer clothes into 15 degree weather gear. "This sundress can be winter-y, right? Like if I wear it with a scarf? No?"

But, yeah, what a great game. I wish I had gone--weather was as good it gets for an April game, Fatso started, low-scoring game, tie-breaking/game-winning long ball late in game, to supplement runs "manufactured"* by way of base hits, during a 2-out rally.

*I hate this almost as much as "step up to the plate" and "must-win situation," and more than "insurance runs." All runs are manufactured. Some are manufactured by hitting the ball over the fence. Some are manufactured by driving in baserunners with base hits. It's like "walking distance" and "divisible by __."

Round Boy starts off the game with about 738 pitches in the 1st inning, including one that Paul Goldschmidt launched over the opposite field. It was opposite of encouraging, too. I hate when Lard struggles, not so much because of impact on game, but for sort of the same reason I hate it when Mo blows a save.

Non-Yankee fans never say, "One bad game, one bad inning, he's great at any age, any weight." They say the opposite of that, and it's ridiculous hearing people say, "CC is done! He's getting up there, you know. Yankees were f'n morons to sign him to such a big contract. You know, the Yankees buy their team. P.S.. Arod."

The less time spent listening to animated, empassioned drivel that lacks basic corroborating support and facts... the better, The best even. That's a big reason why I don't like Round Boy/Mo pitfalls.

HOWEVAH, no pitfall from either side last night! After the bomb to Goldschmidt, he was good ol' again. It bears mentioning (maybe), that every time I hear or write Goldschmidt (which is like n=11), he keeps popping up in my head as Pewtersmidt. Not only did that not bear mentioning, it needed even less picture cobbling:


After gorging himself on pitches in the 1st, Fat fasted, giving up only 3 hits rest of game (through 8th anyway), sac fly to A.J. Pollack. No powerpoint photo manipulation for him, though.

3-0 game, Yanks down in 7th, and from my memory of the stale, shapeless, and lackluster season last year, this was when --as we had sadly learned--was not a magic time for them. No mystique. Most just the Que? part of the word.

But then the NY Yankees, in all their weirdly Motley Crew-formed "glory," pulled it off. Ben Francisco (Like the city, only a BE instead of an SA. Cute! BESA! or BASE!) singles in the 7th with 1 out, after the Yankees were almost hitless against Miley Cyrus for the first 6 innings.

Super Mario struck out, 2 outs, 1 on. No runs. Brennan Boesch, whose name just isn't right, doubles. 2nd and 3rd, 2 outs.

(His name's not right! Where's the D? Why the E? It looks like one of the words I'd try to pass off during my brief Words With Friends stint, when I'd just throw all the letters on the board in every permutation possible until "Not a Word" didn't pop up after pressing submit.)

Then Nunez errs on the side of doing the right thing, which is walk, to load up the bases for Jayson Nix, who also walks. Miley is throwing the ball like he's playing Pop-A-Shot, arcade basketball, and he's just trying to get as many tosses up as possible to jack up the buckets before time expires.

So, if you remember from Tuesday's post, I did have a prediction about the game:

"Miley is going to be Rowny by game's end."

And look at this! Adding to the thematic silo of "missing letters in names," here is Rowny being taken out:

He is biting a towel.

Joe Girardi on Rowny:

"He's a good looking pitcher. He gets you to swing at that ball that's just above the waist and looks really tempting."


Yanks on the board. Tony Sipp comes in for relief, who sounds like he would make a nice ice cream truck operator.

In comes GGBG, whose numbers with bases loaded are pretty ridiculous(ly good) for someone who will never have the meanness and teeth grinding aggression of a big slugger. He looks like he should be working with the Geek Squad at Best Buy. But he came through. With a 2-run single that slipped through the fielders like a tomato seed under a nail gun. Tie game.

Then Hafner goes yard off Sipp:


Mo gets the save. Yanks take 7th game of the last 8. Keith texts me to say he's "liking this team!" I continue to be confused by things such as Vernon Wells being the Yankee to break up a hitless game through 6 innings.

Tonight we go for win #9. The pitcher match-up isn't as promising as the Tubbo/Miley Cyrus duel. It also looks like the Little League commissioner needs to step in and talk to the coaches about having lopsided teams. It's unfair to the kids.

Arizona: Corbin (2-0, 1.50 ERA)
New York: Hughes (0-2, 10.29 ERA)

Ignorantia non est beatitudo. Ita malum non est confusio semper.


I love how much this unintentionally speaks to the storied closer in pinstripes, and I love how it much frustrate Douglas Adams to have his sneaky ambiguity abused by misguided baseball fans. I'm sure he was sitting back all smug watching the literary world clamor over interpretting this, patently refusing to enlighten anyone. Mystery=value. And then someone probably said, "He's just a big baseball fan, dummies!"

Actually, that book had some pretty good lines, so I should ease up on this picture-painting-of-smugness. But before we get into the game:
There's also this "explanation" from the reputable wiki answers reference:

The Ultimate Answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything, however, is known to be 42.
How it was computed had to deal with 6 x 9 = 42. Now this does not make sense in the Base 10 number system (our common system). However, when computed in Base 13, the equation actually works out.
613 x 913 = 4213. Now 6 and 9 in Base 13 still are 6 and 9.
However, 42 is represented in groups of 13 instead of groups of 10, as would be found in the Base 10 number system.
So, instead of 4 x 13 = 52, 4 x 13 = 40 (since 13 is translated to 10). 2 x 1 is still 2.
The original equation shows 6 x 9 = 54. Which is (4*13) + (2*1).
Therefore, with the case of Base 13, it would mean (4*10) + (2*1) = 40 + 2 = 42.

I know it does not solve the question of "Why?", but it does solve the question of "How?"

Yeah, this is like in college when I'd get an essay question on some 800 page monster book of which I had read 200 pages, and all I could do was really just write down every single fact and detail I remembered from those 200 pages in the hopes that this would mask the fact every character in Middlemarch was referred to only by pronouns. Sometimes "it," even.

Anyways, thanks, Wiki, for giving us a valuable lesson on base numbers. (This is why I hate math. There's a Base 10 number system and a Base 13 number system? If I had known this in school, I would have started justifying every incorrect answer with this. "No, no. Yeah, it's wrong in our COMMON system. But this is..Base 42."

Back to 42. As I predicted, I was confused with all the 42s running around. This could be because I just finished watching the game about a half hour ago (6:12am). The taping of the game thing actually worked tonight, in the sense that the bar I was at didn't have a tv. It had victorian molding and big Ruben-esque paintings of fleshly women. But no tv.

I watched the game like it was live, and now it's over and there are so many 42s whipping around in my head. It was like that scene in Sister Act when the bad guys were chasing after Whoopi Goldberg but there were so many nuns in the casino that they didn't know which was the Whoopi nun.

Allllll the players had 42 on. 27 people in game. Watching McCarthy throw that many pitches to so many 42s was legitimately making me delirious.

Robinson Cano, named after the original 42, whose number 24 is to honor, was the star of the game with the 3-run bomb in the 4th to answer the 2-run lead the Dbacks staked in the 3rd. I will say that Cano was about half a second away (ok, 0.42 seconds away) from crossing into "Locking Up a High and In Fast Ball Next Time He Sees McCarthy" territory.

Which is to say..well, you know. Pause. Like, a real pause.

And then our #42 came in to get one two three #42s out in a row to get the save.

Nunez hit a sac fly to make the final score 4-2.

All in all, a pretty tidy game for our weirdo team, despite the unfamiliarity of the whole interleague play.

(It's POSSIBLE that all these things I keep putting on par with Sodoku, Raisinettes, Kreb Cycle, and these in terms of things I can't wrap my head around...are actually not that mindtwisting as I'm making them out to be. I should be able to handle seeing a couple dozen 42s, in an AL/NL matchup. No, I'm sorry, I'm still not there yet. I need the numbers otherwise I have no idea who these strange Yankees are.)

Nova wasn't super nova. But the pen did the job. Even Joba mustachioed his way out of the inning without giving up a hit. Which meant he didn't give up 6 runs either. Good show, I say.

Speaking of good, that is what tonight's match-up will be. Well, no future tense. It is. It is already good. Tubbo v Miley. 100% sounds like a brightly-colored-critters-from-space type of cartoon. Or maybe the final two contestants in a appeals-to-the-people-who-arent-here-to-make-friends kind of reality show.

I don't care. Miley is going to Rowny by game's end. Yes. That happened.

Also happening is thunder and lightening, both of which I love so, so much. So long as it stops by 7:05. But if it doesn't stop by 7:05, I don't want a YES network guy to relay the bad news. I want it to be some lifeguard who blows a whistle and yells, "OK EVERYBODY OUT OF THE POOL NOW!"

Tempore facere donuts. A calicem tea dedisset restituturum normalitatis mea.

Or this. Which I did not do in my head or on paper, but rather on a math translation site.


Probably should have mentioned I was going to be off the grid for a week.

(Sorry, J.C.)

But it was one of those weeks where you think 24 hours in a day is more than enough time to get everything done..until it's 6am and you realize you have so much left to do that you need to write a to-do list to keep from going crazy, except you don't have time to write a to-do list, and you're mad because if you DID have time, you'd put "write to-do list" on the list.

Yeah, it's not making any sense to me, either. Suffice to say that the Yankees took their first W on my sister's 30th birthday, and that night put me out of commission for the weekend.

Then Monday came, as it is want to do, and even though I've done 1,666 of them so far, this particular transition from weekend-to-week felt like it should have had one of those cartoon soundtracks where part II of the William Tell Overture abruptly screeches into Flight of the Bumblebee or soemthing.

Anyways, that's neither here nor there. It's purgatory. Normally scheduled blogging will resume tomorrow for the A's series. To recap* the last week:

*I just realized that the last time I recapped anything, by conventional "recap" definitions and standards, was probably circa SAT prepping. Now my version of "recap" is like the "throw-away-obviously-wrong" multiple choice option in a reading comprehension quiz.

"What is the best way to summarize last night's Yankee win?"
a.) The Yankees beat the Orioles on Sunday.
b) The Yankees shut out the Orioles in a 3-0 victory.
c.) The Yankees's 3-0 victory over the O's was fueled by Kuroda's 5th career shut out, and GGBG's 2-run bomb. 
d.) I have a love/hate relationship with starts that feature two Asians, because I love slash hate the post-game "said through a translator"s. Also, I just found out what YOLO stands for.

(It stands for You Only Live Once. Also, FOMO means Fear Of Missing Out. I don't like either of the terms, though I am pleased I can add them underneath "Intensive Purposes" and "touche" on the list of "Long Overdue Epiphanies About Words.")

Check. Here's what I got on last week:

Yankees avoided a sweep at the hands of Boston, and Mariano Rivera came out of the bullpen, and my heart leapt. And then I texted Hug because he bet me last year we've seen the last of #42. I was so happy, that the "fear-of-reminding-someone-of-a-deal-a-long-time-later-is-met-with-oh-you-were-serious-about-that-I-totally-forgot-about-it" was completely muted.

Yankees took off for Detroit, and the "fear-of-being-shut-out-ALCS-style" was not completely muted. Detroit terrifies me. I said it. 1st in BA and OBP...7th in SLG? Yeah, Detroit terrifies me because in my head they are how movies portray the Yankees: evil, powerhouses of invincibility. Run manufacturers don't scare me. But apparently that's what Detroit is. I need someone to check under the bed for HR stats before I go to sleep.

Two losses. Then a win. In terms of SAT questions, that is a pattern I could identify.
a.) WLW
b.) WWL
c.) LLW
d.) Turkey

Shows what I know! WWWW. 4 wins. (Oh, and speaking of run-manufacturing: Oakland. It's the 2013 Team That Begins With the Letter O That We Will Spend All Year Asking If They Are For Real Up Until the Point Where It Gets Ridiculous Because They Have Secured a Playoff Spot.

11-1 is pretty good, though. Admittedly, if I were an A's fan, I'd be already thinking about logo designs for the "161-1" trademark. (That sounded snarky, but I'm being dead serious.)

Whatever, as long as it's not the Royals. I am so, so sick of EVERY year some sect of "analysts" that analyze as well as I "recap," decide that the Royals are the team of which everyone should be scared. They're 7-5! Everyone is 7-5! Seriously, there's the Braves, the "7 and 5"-ers, and the Padres. That's the league right there.

The Padres got into a big fight with the Dodgers, and Greinke broke his collar bone. Matt from Finance: "WELL, HE WASN'T SO SHY THEN, WAS HE?" Ha. Yeah, Greinke's got to get his story straight about his aw shucks social awkwardness.

To boot, he acted like he could NEVER play in NY, when in reality Greinke was basically like, "Hi Yankees? It's Zach. We met at the Dresdin, uh, tonite. And um I just called to say I had a great time. And you should, uh, call me tomorrow. Or um, in 2 days. Or whatever. Anyways, my number is 555--" BEEP. And then 5 more calls later and Cashman picks up, and is like, "Zach? Don't ever call us again."

Moving on, the Yanks head to Cleveland, and Girardi has a shit fit about scheduling, a la Mike Mussina style, because two of the games were canceled, and the Powers That Be have some Goddamn nerve making the Yankees play in a cold climate at night so early in the season.

Here's what I don't get about scheduling complaints: it's not supposed to be easy. It's supposed to be hard. (Pause). As Jimmy Doogan said, "The hard is what makes it good." (Pause.)

On the other hand, Joe makes a pretty strong case for himself: "I mean, it’s snowing in Minnesota and the Mets are there. I don’t know who can make the best snowman."

Well...sure. I mean, really, there is nothing that boils the blood more than a snowman making contest that lacks a clear victor. That and this.

Two games played in Jacobs Field, both won, by a combined score of about 103-3. Cheers, Kuroda and Pettitte.

The Week Where the Time Continuum Got Lost in the Shuffle came to a close mercifully on Friday, aka MY FIRST GAME OF THE YEAR! First game with Matt from Finance Dept.!

Saw the triple play, and I love the other fans who erupted like we won game 7, and then frantically looked around pleading, "DID EVERYONE JUST SEE WHAT JUST HAPPENED?" It was pretty sick.


The play featured six throws and was ultimately scored a 4-6-5-6-5-3-4 triple play -- the first such play in Major League history. It was the first triple play for the Yankees since April 22, 2010, against the Athletics and the first at home since June 3, 1968, against Minnesota.

"That was awesome," said starter CC Sabathia, the main beneficiary of the triple play. "Any time you get a triple play, you're fired up."

Ha: the "first triple play since 2010." This is why people hate the Yankees. Because up until Friday, there were 3-year-olds walking around thinking they'd never get to see a triple play in their lifetime.

Yanks lose Saturday with Hughes, make it up on Sunday with the aforementioned 3-0 shutout. Bringing the Yankees to 6-5, but the most stellar 6-5 in the league. Because the way people talked about them, that's 6 more wins than everyone expected them to have. Actually, 8 more, really.

The team is being propelled by the spunk and youthful panache of Vernon Wells, Travis Hafner, and Youkilis. Yes, the Yanks' offensive stats are at the top of the AL, 3rd in MLB.

OPS: .756
Which is to be expected out of a lineup where your power hitting is coming from Piglet and Old Men River DHs. The Yankees, ladies and gentlemen. Lyle Overbay. Super Mario. Sneach. Cano. Bosh [sic].

It's like a mix tape you make a significant other in high school, where nothing belongs together, yet there was a method to the madness that may produce some harmonic fluidity.

But this is coming from someone who'd put Velvet Underground and Sinatra and Weezer in succession and not think twice about it.

And if I wasn't having a hard enough time already making sense of who I'm seeing play, tomorrow everyone will be wearing #42. This confuses the hell out of me every. single. time. Significantly more than it should.

(And to say nothing of the fact that I don't even know which of them wins in a snowball fight.)

I'm watching these games with my head cocked, with this perpetual dumbfounded expression of "Huh. Look at that." Good or bad. Look at that.

And in the middle of everything, I'll get these excited email updates from etc, like reminding me the hired guns still exist:


Tex says he's going to consider picking up a batting glove first week in May!

Granderson makes first steps towards cleats, predicts early June shoe tie!

Jeter says hi!"

Then a requisite follow-up mass email blast like, "Btw...Arod. What's up with that guy, right??"

So that's what I got. I mean, for tonight anyway. Interleague play starts against the D-backs, and I want to see something good happen with Nova. If I can pick him out of the scores of #42s running around all over the place.

Ok, irish exiting out of this post. Sort of. Til tomorrow night..!

Esse bonum. Incumbe. Facere rectum.

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