Yanks/Sox Game 1: Bummer

I don’t know which I find more disheartening: losing a close game that was there for the taking or getting humiliated in a blowout.

O.K. I do know. I hate both with identical passion.
As for tonight, while I never take anything for granted when we play the Sox, especially at Fenway, I thought we’d win this one. Joba got the double plays when he needed them. Coke and Alba did their jobs. Ortiz struck out with surprising frequency. And we were still ahead 4-2 in the ninth. Then the unthinkable: Mo blew the save.
Yeah, I was shocked too, because he’s usually lights out. But the guy is human. The NESN announcers reported that he has 12 blown saves against the Red Sox – the most against any team – and I had to laugh. That would give him an average of one per year over his 12-year career as a closer. Hardly a disaster.
Much more troubling, in my opinion, were the runners the Yankees stranded on base. A recap:
* First inning: Jeter led off with a single, and Damon, Tex and Posada stranded him.
* Second inning: Melky and Molina walked, and Ransom stranded them.
* Third inning: Damon and Tex singled, and Posada and Swisher stranded them.

* Fifth inning: Swisher doubled, and Cano stranded him.
* Sixth inning: Molina singled, and Ransom stranded him.
* Eighth inning: Ransom walked, and Jeter and Damon stranded him.
* Ninth inning: Tex got hit by a pitch, Posada and Swisher walked, loading the bases, and Cano (GIDP) and Melky (pop up) stranded them.
* Tenth Inning: Molina singled and Damon walked, and Tex stranded them.
* Eleventh inning: Posada walked, Gardner laid down a lousy bunt, Cano singled, and Melky stranded them (GIDP on a pitch way out of the strike zone).
Any way you look at it, that’s a lot of stranding.
Then, there was the use of the bullpen. I understand that Bruney was hurt and unavailable. But what was up with bringing Mo in during Ellsbury’s at-bat in the eighth with an 0-and-1 count? Was Girardi in the clubhouse watching a rerun of “Friends” when he suddenly remembered he wanted to call for his closer?
And finally, I must make mention of Joe’s use of Marte. I was thrilled to see Damaso have a 1-2-3 tenth, but that should have been enough! He’s never good for two! What was he doing on the mound in the 11th with Edwar and Veras rested and ready? It was puzzling.
But oh well. It was an exciting game (if you like the sensation of your stomach churning and your palms soaking with sweat), and we’ll try again tomorrow. I miss having A-Rod, Matsui and Nady in the lineup. Maybe there would be less stranding if they were.


  1. latinyankeerebel

    I see a trend…. Ransom… Ransom… Ransom… Ransom… the kid can make a few plays here and there but we need those bats to wake up!!!…(We need ALEX and we need him NOW!)

    I feel sooooo bad for Mo’. Yes, he’s not God, but unfortunately many people think he is not human and that he is not allowed to make mistakes. In this case, I don’t blame him it was Girardi’s fault, I think he was watching that Friends episode were Ross continuously says “We were on a break!” he (Girardi) got confused, and for some odd reason remembered Mo’ and called him in.

    I think I can bat better than Ransom, either that or i can use the bat to hit Papsmear and Youcankillhim on the head.

    A bad joke: I wouldn’t pay a ransom for Ransom…

    You know Jane, I actually remembered you and the fact that you are not very fond of blow outs, you see, in cases like this series its fun!

    Well, is 330am over here on the east coast. I better get off to bed.

  2. steve_t

    The Sox get to Mo every year and it does stand out–only because he’s usually untouchable. Of course, it’s never news if he racks up five or six saves against the Sox in the same given year. Nevertheless, it was an exciting victory following what I thought to be a fairly ho-hum game until the ninth.

    Steve T.

  3. juliasrants

    It was a great Red Sox-Yankees game! And you can never, ever count the Red Sox out! The real turning point of the game? The Yankees having the bases loaded in the top of the 9th with no outs and they were unable to score! I am looking forward to the game today!


  4. letsgoyankees

    This game was like a Twilight Zone episode.
    Still, I’m quite confident we’ll win the next two, just like in Tampa.
    By the way, I prefer blowouts.

  5. Jane Heller

    Latinyankeerebel, Ransom is now on the DL. (Did you see him get hurt stealing second? He looked like he was in real pain.) He’s out with a strained quad, so now we’ll be seeing Pena at third. And they’re probably calling up Berroa.

    Both sides left runners on and missed chances, Steve. But you’re right – walkoffs do tend to wake things up. Talk about a jolt!

    I don’t think that was the turning point, Julia. I think the Yankees blew it in the fourth when they had an opportunity to score more than two runs off Lester and didn’t.

    What a stat, Greg. Crazy is right. Have fun working the game today.

    I’m excited about the Burnett/Beckett matchup, Canuck. The fact that both B boys are former teammates as well as great pitchers adds a little something.

    I wish I had your confidence, Letsgoyankees. As I said in a previous post, part of me wants to hide under the bed during these games.

    I think we left about 15 men on base, Denyankfan, not 31. Still, we need A-Rod.

  6. letsgoyankees

    Ah, I’m confident, but the Sox have proven they can take al the stats and thing that’re supposed to happen and throw them out the window time and again.

  7. raysrenegade

    I think the fact that the Yankees and Red Sox fought back and forth for all those ends shows the emotion and the intensity in that rivalry this year.
    they know that every series has to be considered a playoff series this year, because the loser in the yearly series might not make the playoffs.
    That kind of pressure can either produce a bummer of a game, or an instant classic match-up.
    Let’s hope the next two have the same energy and vibe that last night had in it.
    If they fight like this in April, what kind of battles will they have in September……….

    Rays Renegade


  8. Jane Heller

    That’s the beauty (and the scariness) of this rivalry, Letsgoyankees. Anything can happen and usually does.

    Every Yankees-Sox game is like a playoff, Renegade, no matter when it is. There’s an article in today’s NY Times about how the players on both teams are friendly and how it’s really just the fan bases that hate each other. But everybody acknowledges that the intensity is always there. It’s exhilarating and exhausting at the same time.

  9. rrrt

    All those stranded baserunners are a real killer. IF I were a Yankees fan, the top of the ninth would have been particularly frustrating – bases loaded with no outs, a chance to put the game away, and nothing..nada..zip. Won’t be home tonight to follow the game’s progress, but I’ll be thinking about you and Julia for sure!
    Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

  10. PAUL

    I’m about to go into a bit more detail about this on my site, but it appeared that since Girardi had told Rivera that he might need him for a two inning save, he then made the decision to do it no matter what; even if he didn’t REALLY need to. Very bad.

  11. americansoldier

    I love your writing and humor…even in frustrating situation. The Hindenburg photo and sheep surrounding by flooding waters are golden, along with the surprised Rivera photo.

    Your writing is funny as well.

    By the way, how are Yankee fans feeling about Girardi’s job as the Skipper?

    One more thing – if you can help, please? Do you include all the names in your writing as “Tags?” Or…is that done automatically?

    By the way, my oldest son, Will (17), is a Yankees Fan, 1st and foremost; his favorite player is Derek Jeter. I took Will, along with the rest of my Family, to Kansas City in 2007 to watch them play the Yankees. We were rooting on the Yanks, of course. I remember it began with several young people taking the Oath in their first start to becoming Army Soldiers before the game even began. Roger Clemens won his 350th career game, Jeter had an RBI Single in the first, and I think I remember AROD hitting a HR – it was late July. The Yankees won overwhelmingly, as well.

    Thanks, take care, and Good Luck to the Yankees in 2009.

  12. missmynewyawk

    That game was heart breaking- but what’s worse is finding out our man Bruney is now on the DL. Ughhh. I’m just wondering who did we piss off in the baseball universe that we constantly have to deal with these huge injuries? A-Rod, Wang (the good one, not the ’09 version), and now our terrific setup man. **sigh**

  13. Jane Heller

    I’m watching the game right now, Sue, but I almost didn’t get to see it. I’ll blog about why later.

    Will check out your epic, Kaybee. Sounds exciting.

    I don’t mind a two-inning save, Paul. But so weird about when he brought Mo in. I’ll go read what you have to say on the subject.

    Thanks for the kind words, Americansoldier. I can’t speak for all Yankee fans on the subject of Girardi, but the jury is still out for me. He seems unnecessarily attached to lefty-righty match-ups and I’m not wild about his bullpen management, but he’s made adjustments in how he deals with the players and media since last year. He seems like a good guy. On the tags, you type them in yourself in the box labeled “Tags.” Great story about the game you took Will to in KC. Sounds like it was a great experience!

    I was surprised to find that pic of Mo, Jeff. He so rarely shows any emotion – one of the reasons I love him. No fist pumping when he wins. No pouting when he doesn’t.

    It was heartbreaking, missmynewyawk. And now Bruney. SIGH. He was throwing so well too. Well, they brought up Melancon so I hope he’ll be as good as everyone says.

  14. letsgoyankees

    This is heartbreaking. My confidence is wasted.
    I am emotionally drained. What a disgraceful job by A.J. and the bullpen.
    A.J., why the grand slam to Varitek? Why? Please?
    My optimism is being sapped.

  15. Jane Heller

    Hang on, Letsgoyankees. Don’t give up and don’t let it get you down. I just finished watching a replay and will write a post soon. Maybe it’ll cheer you up.

  16. flairforthedramatic

    LOL.. hilarious pic of Mo..
    Didn’t get a much better result today.. another ugly game.. Grr..
    – V [http://flairforthedramatic.mlblogs.com ]

  17. YankeeYears2009

    Oh, How can this be Jane?! Twice in a row they break our hearts:( Giradi is sure making many wonder about his ability to manage this team. Maybe he belongs in the N.L.
    Anyways, thanks for taking time to post even after such a bad weekend.

  18. Jane Heller

    Grrr is right, V. Just finished my post. I’m sure you have something great over on “Flair,” so I’ll go check now.

    I’ll post in good times and bad, YankeeYears. But don’t let these games break your heart. They’re tough to take, but we’re looking pretty good considering we’re missing a two-time MVP. On the other hand, the bullpen is scary.

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