August 08, 2006
August 8th @ The White Sox
As soon as A-Rod did not catch that foul pop in the 11th, albeit requiring a long run, I knew the Yankees would lose the game in that frame. And, it happened on the next pitch.
It's a shame that A-Rod had an "event" (for lack of a better word) in the deciding inning of this loss as he had an awesome game at the plate today.
With the Yankees losing, 3-2, in the 3rd, Rodriguez hit a clutch two-out 2-run homer to give the Yankees the lead. Then, in the 8th inning, Rodriguez got a clutch single on an 0-2 pitch to load the bases - which led to the Yankees scoring and taking a 5-4 lead in the game. And, later, in the 10th inning, Rodriguez got a 2-out walk with the bases empty, and then had a clutch steal of second to put himself in scoring position (before Bernie Williams whiffed to end the inning).
Personally, if not for A-Rod's bat tonight, the Yankees probably lose this game by a score of 4-2 in 9 innings and then there never would be an 11th inning missed pop-up. Still, I bet that Alex gets questioned about not making that play.
This loss is a stinger - and not the best way to start this run of 21 games in 20 days. Plus, the Yankees had to burn their whole pen (Villone, Farnsworth, Proctor and Rivera) today. You hate to unload the whole clip when you're shooting at a shadow.
Oh, well, at least Boston lost to the Royals.
Posted by Steve Lombardi at August 8, 2006 11:59 PM
Instead of A-Rod, I would point the finger at Posada going 0 for 5 with an all-too-predictable double-play with the bases loaded and 1 out (but he had a great night behind the plate in throwing out guys), Cabrera going 0fer as well and stranding Cano at 3rd, and Giambi getting hurt and forcing Bernie to bat against Jenks, which was a slingshot against a shotgun-type situation.
And I swear I've seen every Rivera blown save this year, and I don't get to see many games. I know earlier this year he wasn't striking guys out, but I kind of assumed he was doing better--has anyone crunched his numbers lately? Just curious.
And I agree, Johnson needs to show up tomorrow, they need him in a big way. At least Boston lost.
Jeremy hit the nail on the head as far as I'm concerned: the thing that killed the Yanks tonight was Posada hitting into that double play with the bases loaded. Cotts comes in, hits Giambi to force in a run, he had to be a little rattled, and Posada helped him out. Posada was great behind the plate, but that double play pretty much killed the game (we could have broken it open).
The ump was also terrible tonight. His strikezone was all over the place. For both teams. It was about the worst job I've seen all year.
While Jenks definitely won't be available tomorrow, Farnsworth and Mo will be. And maybe even Villone.
No, you cannot kill A-Rod for not catching that ball, but Jesus Christ, isn't it so typical that he would have a huge night with his bat and then miss that popup? Of course the next pitch won the game. A-Rod has that kind of karma. Like Steve, I knew the game was over as soon as he didn't catch it.
The Red Sox kind of gave the Yankees a free pass by losing to the Royals. But it would have been much sweeter to be up three, and I would personally like to gain a few games before we play the Angels and then have to play those five in Fenway.
No losses feel quite as depressing as the ones Mo loses.
What did Arod have to do with this loss? It always come back to him with you , Steve. I enjoy this site, but the A-rod obsession is a little much. What about all the runners left on base? Mariano giving up the shot to Konerko?
Hold the phone, here, Steve!
I'd like to take exception to your statement: "the Yankees had to burn their whole pen...today."
IMO, the Yanks didn't have to burn the bullpen. But rather Torre opted to burn the bullpen. He pulled Villone to bring in Veras to pitch to lefties (?) in the 7th. Then he pulled Veras after 8 pitches and had Myers throw just 2 pitches. The Farnsworth and Rivera moves are fine, and Mo just left a bad one over the plate to a great hitter.
But I'm not so sure I like the idea of using three relief pitchers in one inning of what was then a tie game in Chicago. Ponson (and I guess Cory Lidle) were the only ones left in the bullpen after Proctor. That's not so hot.
Posted by: Benjamin Kabak at August 9, 2006 12:42 AM
This was just one of those icky loses... you can't exactly pin the blame on one guy. nor did the Yankees play all that bad or the White Sox all that great...
Posada went 0-5 but he also caugth 3 guys stealing... so it's really just difficult to blame anything in particular. Wang didnt have much but kept the ball game within reach, Proctor took the loss but he threw a incrediable 10th... etc... its just hard to pin the blame on one thing in this one. just forget about it and go on, Cano / Abreu / A-rod all had great games tonight at the box.
This was one of those games that you get a 'feel' for, happens several times a season. You know the team will win despite a big deficit or, like tonight, you know that when they don't get those guys in from third with less than two outs they'll lose. In spite of MO being ready, it just hits you out of the blue. This was true tonight.
I fear that Posada has commenced his patented second-half swoon.
>>>IMO, the Yanks didn't have to burn the bullpen. But rather Torre opted to burn the bullpen. He pulled Villone to bring in Veras to pitch to lefties (?) in the 7th. Then he pulled Veras after 8 pitches and had Myers throw just 2 pitches. The Farnsworth and Rivera moves are fine, and Mo just left a bad one over the plate to a great hitter.<<<<
I don't think the pen is burned at all. Yes, everyone pitched (sans Ponson and Lidle), but the very fact that only Proctor threw a lot of pitches makes everyone available tonight.
Of course, it would still be nice if Johnson could go 7 or 8 innings tonight.
Oh, and seriously, Arod is being blamed again? I'm gonna have to agree with Gabe about this.
Posted by: Jeteupthemiddle at August 9, 2006 07:38 AM
I turned the game off after top 11. Proctor is effective for only one inning at a time. In that situation, I thought Joe MIGHT go to Lidle. He was supposed to pitch today anyway. An inning or two wouldn't kill him.
That being said, this loss is Mo's fault. It's hard to blame him since he is amazing, but he didn't do his job. It's as simple as that. Alex was on base about 0509 times last night, how can it be his fault?
Nice to see Robbie back though. Melky needs to step up. Abreu looks great. Jeter had some tough luck. Giambi didn't show up. Damon should have gotten the runner in from third (insurance). All of these things are moot because Mo needs to end that game. Period.
You should get some lottery tickets because you'll definitely win the big prize tonight because your ability to predict results is uncanny.
You didn't think the Yanks would lose when Wang gave up the lead twice.
You didn't think the Yanks would lose the game when Rivera gave up the lead to Konerko.
You didn't think the Yanks would lose the game when Iguchi singled to lead off the 11th.
Nope, you "...knew the Yankees would lose the game in that frame. And, it happened on the next pitch."
Gabe's right, you're obsessed. That's not necessarily a bad thing since you seem to get more hits on your blog when you lead with Arod stuff and it's interesting enough to have people including me respond to your thoughts.
But it does spook me out a bit :-)
Tell the truth, was one out in the 11th the ONLY time you thought the Yanks would lose Tuesday?
Unless RJ shows up tonight, we're not winning this series. He's been lousy the last few weeks (since that day game vs. Seattle where he threw 130 pitches) and less than 7 IP from him today will be bad news. Which is why I don't understand Torre's thinking. Why not give RJ the extra day of rest?
Anyway, bottom line, last night's game stank. Melky had a lousy game at the plate, Rivera shit the bed, and the team didn't do its job in scoring runners from 3B with less than 2 outs. Those things kill you. Last night was not ARod's fault. The guy did everything he could for the team last night, drawing walks, getting hits in big spots. Bottom line, the game was in the bag and Rivera let it fly. I'm not blaming him because it happens; but facts are facts.
PS - Dunno what it is about the White Sox and Rivera this year but he hasn't been lights out against them. He nearly blew that Friday night game coming off the All-Star break and he got into trouble on that Sunday when he nailed down #400.
I blame A-Rod. If he would have hit 5 grand slams yesterday, we would have easily won the game. But he didn't, and we lost.
Mo blew a save. That's all it comes down to.
Why is it that whenever anyone mentions something negative about A-Rod, people go nuts? How do you go from Steve saying "I knew the game was over when A-Rod didn't get to that popup" to "We didn't win because A-Rod didn't hit five grand slams"? I know A-Rod fans are sensitive because of the way he was getting booed, but you seriously need to calm down.
Bailey - I'm sorry. You must have missed the memo.
It's my fault that A-Rod gets blamed for everything.
Didn't you know that?
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 10:04 AM
This was interesting. From the Times:
~~~~One pitch after a foul ball dropped between Alex Rodriguez and Melky Cabrera down the left-field line, Dye lined a pitch into center to score Iguchi and end the game.
Rodriguez said he missed the foul pop by 10 feet. “I can’t catch that ball, and probably Melky can’t, either,” he said. “You hit that ball 100 times, I can’t catch it 100 times.” ~~~~~
Ten feet? I saw the play live. It looked like the ball dropped right in front of A-Rod as soon as he stopped running.
But, of course, I'm the A-Rod hater!
Seriously, did anyone else watch the game last night? Did it look like ten feet to you?
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 10:17 AM
FWIW, here's a slightly different view:
~~~~Moments before the game- winning hit, Dye hit a high pop fly in foul territory that probably could have been caught.
"I was lucky to be presented with a second chance," Dye said. "When you get a second chance, you should do something with it. It was nice to get some good wood on the ball and win the game." ~~~~
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 10:20 AM
Mistakes happen but that 2-strike pitch to Konerko could have been a 2-seamer on the inside corner rather than a flat cutter over the plate. Konerko's a great hitter on anything out over the plate. Mo and Posada have to be more aware of hitters who've had success against Mo in the past. It's not inconceivable that Konerko set up Mo for that cutter with his two weak swings leading up to it. If the cutter does its job, of course, Konerko can only foul it off or take it for strike three. But it's clear he was looking outer half...and he put a good swing on it. End of game, really. The other turning point was definitely Bernie having to pinch-hit from the left side against a real hard thrower, Jenks. Oh, Aaron Guiel might have done better. Might have. We'll never know.
It's hard to say, but I would guess it was 2-3 feet in front of him - slightly further than an outstretched arm. He took a bad route to the ball. I think Cabrera had a better shot at getting to it, but he wasn't going all out.
For ther record, I don't think your an A-Rod hater. I just don't get how A-Rod running after a ball 150 feet down the 3rd base line becomes an "event" or a "karma" related loss. If I were to come up with the top 10 reasons why we lost last night, that pop up wouldn't make the list.
Yeah, but, for the record, Mo didn't lose the game, he just allowed it to be tied. Same as Posada with the DP grounder - the Yankees were ahead when that happened - his DP did not lose the game.
Proctor, on the other hand, well, he did set up the 11th. But, since Dye won the game, and he would have been out if the pop-up was caught, then you have to say that not catching the pop was an important part in losing the game, at least to me.
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 10:43 AM
Fair enough. What about Damon's inability to throw a baseball more than 100 feet?
saying Mo didnt lose the game because he just allowed it to be tied is a silly argument. If Mo doesn't give up any runs, there is no chance the white sox win (obviously). So "blame" for a loss goes only to the pitcher (or player) involved with the losing run. So let's say if Mo came in when it was 8-0 gave up 8 runs, and then the yankees lost in 11 innings on a sac fly, the pitcher who gave up the sac fly lost the game?
Gabe - there's a difference between a Blown Save and a Loss, no? Did Rivera get the "L"? No, he got a "BS" - because that's all he did. Mo did not "Lose" the game.
As far as Damon's arm, again, if A-Rod catches the pop-up that fell in front of him, then there's never a hit to CF and Damon's lack of arm is not an issue.
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 11:05 AM
And if Mo doesn't blow the save, A-Rod doesn't get a chance to miss the pop up. You're right - Mo didn't get the L, but A-Rod didn't get an E either. And even if A-Rod did catch it, it would have been the 2nd out and Proctor would have had some work left.
I guess we could go all day with chicken and the egg scenarios.
Bottomline - we lost a tough game, but it wasn't as bad as Boston spitting the bit against KC.
Okay, how about this: Posada's double play with the bases loaded; Giambi's grounder to Garcia in the first; Melky unable to get Cano in from third with less than two outs; Mo giving up the home run; Proctor giving up the winning hit; A-Rod not catching the popup; Johnny's noodle of an arm and his weak throw from center; Cotts hitting Giambi in the elbow, forcing Bernie to pinch-hit from the left side; Bernie striking out with A-Rod on second; Wang giving up that tying run to Crede; the horrible strikezone of the ump (that "walk" to Thome put the winning run on second, if I remember right) -- all of these things contributed to the loss against the White Sox.
Your forgot not starting Lidle and giving Wang an extra day's rest Bailey. [wink]
Posted by: Steve Lombardi at August 9, 2006 11:46 AM
look y'all, not getting the sac flies & the GIDPs hurt a lot, but when you give a lead to your closer in the 9th, the team has pretty much done it's job. that should be in the bag. rivera blew this game, plain & simple.
the only consolation is that beating chicago should not be expected, but beating KC should be.