Sunday, May 31, 2009

Cleveland Walks-off With 5-4 Win

(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
NYY 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 2 0
4 10 0
CLE 0 0 3 0 1 0 0 0 1
5 9 1

Winning pitcher
- Kerry Wood (2-2)

Losing pitcher - Phil Coke (1-3)

Phil Hughes started for the Yankees today and started off very well, but ran into some trouble in the third. With one out Trevor Crowe doubled into the right field corner, and Asdrubal Cabrera followed with a cheap bloop single into shallow center to put runners on the corners with one out. Ben Francisco then walked to load the bases for Jhonny Peralta, who lined the first pitch he saw for a two-run single to right. Following a hits batsman Mark DeRosa hit a sac fly and the Tribe were up 3-0 after three.

Hughes then had a quick fourth and may have had a quick fifth too if not for a Brett Gardner miscue in center. Cabrera led off with a line drive to center, but instead of going back on the ball Gardner broke in and couldn't recover in time and the ball went over his head for a double. He would later score on a Shin-Soo Choo sac fly.

The results weren't there and once again he threw too many pitches (like a lot of young pitchers), but his stuff was very good and he threw a lot of strikes. His fastball was sitting at 92-94 and his slider and curve ball were very good too, and he threw 95 pitches on the day, 66 for strikes. He was just killed by that one bad inning, but nonetheless it was a step back for Hughes coming off his great performance in Texas earlier in the week.

Someone who took a step forward today was Chien-Ming Wang. He pitched three scoreless innings in relief and had by far his best sinker of the season. Not only did it have great movement by the velocity was back at 93-94 mph. He also had a very good slider today. In three innings he allowed no runs on three hits, walked one and struck out three. He threw 42 pitches, 28 for strikes. After the game he said this was the best he's felt since before the foot injury last year. I don't think they should bump Hughes out of a starting job just yet, but if Wang keeps throwing the ball like he did today they're going to have to figure out a way to get him back into the rotation.

For the second time this year Carl Pavano kept the Yankees bats quiet. He kept them off the scoreboard completely until the top of the sixth when with with two out Johnny Damon singled, and Mark Teixeira followed with a two-run homer, his 16th of the year. The Yankees maybe should have scored more, though, but once again the umps blew a call. With one out Derek Jeter hit a slow roller to short and clearly beat the throw to first, but first base umpire Mark Carlson called him out. The umpires all around baseball are terrible, so I'm not surprised anymore when one of these idiots blows a call, I just wish it wouldn't happen so often.

In the seventh Pavano started off the inning by striking out Jorge Posada and then Jeter hit another slow grounder on the infield and this time Carlson actually made the right call, and Jeter was on with a single. And then, for some reason, Indians' manager Eric Wedge took Pavano out of the game after just 89 pitches. After the game he said something about not wanting him to face Damon, but either way it was a stupid move and it did come back to haunt him, at least for a little while. Rafael Perez came in and Damon greeted him with his 12th double of the year to put runners on second and third with one out. That was it for Perez. Now it was Rafael Betancourt's turn out of the pen to pitch to Teixeira, but he injured himself after just three pitches and was replaced by Matt Herges. Herges then allowed a two-run double deep off the wall in left-center and the game was tied. Teixeira drove in all four Yankee runs today and now has 44 RBI on the season.

With the score still tied in the ninth the Yankees had a golden opportunity to take the lead. Hideki Matsui led off with a walk and Ramiro Pena pinch ran for him. Nick Swisher then followed with a nice sac bunt and Brett Gardner reached on an infield single and the Yanks were set up, runners on first and third with one out for Jorge Posada. This was where the Yankees let the game slip away. Kerry Wood was on the mound for the Indians and he's a hard thrower who's pretty slow to the plate. The obvious move was to have Brett Gardner steal second to keep the Yankees out of the double play. And if Cleveland decided to walk Posada to load the bases - which they probably would have - I'll take my chances with Jeter at the plate in that situation any day of the week. But Gardner never moved and inch and Posada eventually grounded into an inning ending double play. Joe Girardi was asked about the play after the game and all he would say was that the situation had been dealt with. I take that as him saying I wanted Gardner steal and he screwed up by not going. Gardner said after the game that "They did want me to steal and I didn't go. I should have. Another mistake, I should have gone. I was worried about (Kerry Wood) picking to third, picking to first, and getting me in a rundown. I didn't go and it came back to get us." Gardner also admitted his mistake in the field and said that he cost the team the game, which is pretty much true, but there were others who also deserved some blame, like Phil Coke.

Coke came on to pitch the bottom of the ninth and walked the leadoff batter, and you know how those leadoff walks always come back to kill you. Asdrubal Cabrera then laid down a sac bunt and the winning run was on second base. David Robertson then came out of the pen and he too had control issues. He walked Ben Francisco, which may have been one of those unintentional intentional walks, but then fell behind the next batter, Jhonny Peralta 3-1. Peralta then lined a 3-1 fastball down the line scoring the winning run.

The Red Sox won today so the Yankees are now just a half game ahead in the division. On the positive side, the Yankees did not commit an error for the 17th straight game tying them with the 2006 Red Sox for the MLB record. The Yankees will look to make it three of four from Cleveland tomorrow night at The Prog. Joba Chamberlain will start for the Yankees and he will face Indians' left-hander Jeremy Sowers.

Jeter, SS 4 1 2 0 0 0 0 .306
Damon, LF 4 2 2 0 0 0 1 .301
Teixeira, 1B 4 1 2 4 0 0 1 .281
Rodriguez, A, 3B 4 0 1 0 0 0 2 .260
Cano, 2B 4 0 0 0 0 0 2 .314
Matsui, DH 3 0 1 0 1 1 0 .263
1-Pena, PR-DH 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .246
Swisher, RF 3 0 1 0 0 2 1 .229
Gardner, CF 4 0 1 0 0 0 2 .270
Cervelli, C 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 .286
a-Posada, PH-C 2 0 0 0 0 1 2 .310
Totals 34 4 10 4 1 4 11

a-Struck out for Cervelli in the 8th.
1-Ran for Matsui in the 9th.

2B: Jeter (12, Pavano), Damon (12, Perez, R), Teixeira (12, Herges).
HR: Teixeira (16, 6th inning off Pavano, 1 on, 2 out).
TB: Jeter 3; Damon 3; Teixeira 6; Rodriguez, A; Matsui; Swisher; Gardner.
RBI: Teixeira 4 (44).
2-out RBI: Teixeira 2.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Rodriguez, A; Cano.
S: Swisher.
GIDP: Gardner; Posada.
Team RISP: 2-for-8.
Team LOB: 5.

CS: Cano (2, 2nd base by Pavano/Shoppach).

Hughes, P 5.0 5 4 4 1 6 0 5.45
Wang 3.0 3 0 0 1 3 0 16.07
Coke (L, 1-3) 0.1 0 1 1 1 0 0 4.79
Robertson 0.0 1 0 0 1 0 0 2.45


PLAYER OF THE GAME: Jhonny Peralta (3-for-4, 3 RBI, Walk-off single)

HONORABLE MENTION: Carl Pavano (7.1 IP, 7, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 K)

GOAT OF THE GAME: Brett Gardner (cost the Yankees a run on defense with misplay in the fifth, and failed to even attempt to steal second base in the ninth.)

Tomorrow's Game

Yankees @ Indians
Game Time: 7:05 p.m. | TV/Radio: YES, ESPN, WCBS 880
RHP Joba Chamberlain (2-1 3.70) vs. LHP Jeremy Sowers (1-2, 7.71 ERA)


Yankeeboy98 "B-Boy" said...

Peter Abraham jsut emailed me and said he likes my blog! Holy crap!

Also, let's just shake off the loss and look forwrd to tonight.


Margo said...

We should take that starter who goes 5 innings, what's his name, oh right Joba and PUT HIM IN THE PEN ALREADY!!!!

Mike B. said...

I'm starting to agree with Margo....


daneptizl said...

You guys make no sense. Joba should be a starter until his career ends. Why aren't you advocating Hughes to the pen... he's throw his share of 5 or fewer inning starts.

I don't get why Coke was even in the game considering he would have faced 4 straight righties...

I want robots as umpires soon so we can get all the damn calls right... plus it'd be funny to see managers trying to argue with them... maybe in 40 years... but probably not...

Kevin said...

i just do not understand why gardner did not run in the 9th...he is by far the fastest yankee and we have the slowest yankee at the plate...he steals 2nd and who knows what happens...

Anonymous said...

Too bad for Gardner he really has been playing well lately. He had a tough game yesterday.