Yanks-Rays Round 1: Yankees By A TKO

Tonight’s series opener felt like it might be yet another seesaw battle between the two teams, but Curtis Granderson (or Grandis Curtison, as I called him in a moment of excitement) delivered the knockout punch with his second homer of the game. Whatever he and Kevin Long did to his swing worked, and his improved offense couldn’t have come at a better time. With Tex clearly ailing and flailing, Grandy is key to the Yanks’ success. Jeter looked a lot better at the plate too, and Cervelli seemed rejuvenated.
Ivan Nova continued to impress – until he kind of fell apart again. I guess he just runs out of gas.
Was I about to stick my hand into the TV and slap Logan and Gaudin when they couldn’t throw strikes? Uh-huh. But it all ended happily, if shakily, after Mo closed it out. As for Garza, maybe he should take Pedro Martinez’s line and call the Yankees his daddy. It was nice not to have to play scoreboard baseball during the game. The Yanks kept the Rays in the rearview mirror for another day. Whew.
And now a few words about the pre-game activities. Am I the only one who got choked up? What a ceremony, as only the Yankees can do ceremonies.
Watching the entire Steinbrenner family come out onto the field, including Mrs. Steinbrenner whom I’d never seen before, was touching, as was the procession of players past and present (Roy White is such a class act) who followed them to Monument Park, and the return of Torre and Mattingly who both got rousing receptions. After The Boss’ monument was unveiled, I was mesmerized by the sight of Mo crouched all by himself staring at it, as if he really was saying goodbye for the last time. Sob!
And how about Steinbrenner’s granddaughter and her rendition of “God Bless America?” I wasn’t expecting much, figuring she got the gig because of nepotism, but she was awesome. Bring her back, please! And speaking of anthems, how spooky was Frank Sinatra, Jr.? He not only sounded like his father but has aged the same way (well, maybe a little more jowly).
Anyhow, I’m sure it was a great night to be in the Bronx. I’m grateful I was able to see it all on TV way out here in the boonies of California. Speaking of which, I’ll be on a writers panel at the local Borders store in Goleta tomorrow night if anyone’s in the ‘hood. Stop by and say hi.


  1. seindsfeld@aol.com

    The opening ceremony was great. Not too long, not too short, just right, just like our Yanks. I of course being a man didn’t get too choked up ๐Ÿ˜› and made fun of some of it (Like when Mo looked on at the Boss’ Plaque and I got chills, only for Tino to walk right in front of him, looking awkward. I also thought it was funny that by the time the family got in the golf carts, they could have just walked to the monument.) But I guess some of them were pretty old. Seeing Posada give Torre a hug was pretty cool though and it’s great him and Mattingly were were able to come. As for the game, TKO is a good way to call it. It wasn’t a knockout, since the Rays came back (of course they did, why not?) but the Yanks never seemed defeated. How great was it for JETER to get the runs rolling again? The Boss was smiling and clapping I bet. But Jane, omg…I was about to jump into the TV and kill the umpire when he called a pitch by Wood a ball when it was literally…right-down-the-middle. Mo looked a little shaky again, but now on to the pitchers that the Yanks can’t hit. Though, as you said, it’s nice having Garza in their left pocket…whatever that means, isn’t that an expression? It’s funny how the first game after the Boss passed away we beat the Rays and this one was no different… he really did it His Wayyyy! ๐Ÿ˜€

  2. raysrenegade

    This one definitely had the highs and lows of a truly emotionally filled night. And the analogy of a prize fight is so correct it hurts just thinking about it.
    Like the “Thrilla in Manila” this one just went back and forth with both teams teetering on the edge of getting knocked out.
    Was a great way to start off four of the most important games for both teams before things get extra crispy on October 6th. Think I will need smelling salts to revivie the Rays after this one!

    Got something ” too cool for school” for you to see:
    http://www.adamofficial.com/us/news/florida-glam-nation-review .

    Rays Renegade


  3. YankeeCase

    His granddaughter really was great, Jane. I hope they bring her back for the playoffs (i’m still crossing my fingers to make the playoffs. can’t ever be too presumptuous).
    The game was typical Yanks-Rays this year. All the way to the last pitch. Can someone remind Tim McClelland you don’t have to swing and miss to call a strike? I don’t know how much more a pitch can be a strike than that one from Wood! Clearly over the plate, and clearly between the letters and the knees! And then he didn’t even have the decency to call another close pitch a strike as a make up call! Hey Tim, it’s gonna be hard enough to beat the Rays, all we ask is for you to put your glasses on…
    Is it just me, or did that monument seem a little too big? I’m all for getting The Boss his own monument (not just a simple plaque on the wall), but jeez! Does his really have to be like five times that of Babe Ruth’s?! And DiMaggio, and the rest? That thing is huge! Guess his family really wants everyone to remember him…

  4. ooaooa

    Nobody does ceremony like the Yanks. I also was choked up to see that procession of the past and the present along with the young future stars who have been called up for September. I agree about Roy White. I spent some time talking to him a couple of years ago and he is a real gentleman. Seeing the Yanks rebound from that 6th inning funk is encouraging. McClelland is the worst umpire in the league. Aside from his terrible strike call visability he is blind and old. My kids and 2 friends are going to the game tonight. I told them to look for Flaherty and ask him politely to go away, far far away. Can’t stand him. Kids and wife and I are going Saturday vs Sox. Michael I will think of you when I bite into a Lobel’s sandwich!

  5. christy.guzzetta@gesservices.com

    It doesn’t matter what anybody says.
    It’s the 7th game of the World Series, 9th inning, up by one run – the guy I want on the mound more than anyone else in the history of the universe is Mo.
    The only and only Mariano.
    Naysayers go away!

  6. bklyntrolleyblogger

    In the end, George is My Dude. There’s few of those in the world. An angry adolescent (that would be me) didn’t have any good things to say about him…(80’s). Now I’m just an old softy. But I didn’t just decide one day to be all forgiving and….”you know.., nice and stuff”. He earned every bit of change in my attitude. My view of him swung long ago. And I’m glad my opinions changed while he was still very alive. I would have loved to’v watched the ceremony last night but I’m just getting in from the last 27 hour$ cha$ing cabbage. No one knew better than George, Money makes the World go-round. So I’m glad to have one more opportunity to say, “Be Well My Friend” on your Blog. And now…, my pillow is calling my name! “Good Morning” ZZzzzzzzzzz……….

  7. Jane Heller

    I laughed when Tino walked in front of Mo too, seindsfeld. LOL. It sort of broke the moment, but then everybody started coming by so it was over anyway. Jeter has been hitting better lately, but he did seem to be jazzed to play one more for The Boss. I agree on the umpiring. There were so many times, besides the Wood pitch, when I’d yell, “Are you kidding?” It was a groaner in that respect.

    Hey, levelboss. Where have you been? We’ve missed you.

    I think we’re both gonna need smelling salts before this is all over, Renegade. But on to your big news. Check out Renegade’s link, everybody! He’s a concert reviewer AND a baseball blogger now! Congrats to you, Cliff, and I hope they paid you for that international recognition!!!!

    Loved Haley Steinbrenner’s voice, YankeeCase, and the fact that she didn’t try to do too much with the song. Just perfect. I’d love to see her back for the playoffs (should we be lucky enough to get there – no presumptions from me either). Ugh on Tim McClelland. On the monument, I have to agree that it dwarfed “scrubs” like Ruth and Mantle. LOL. But would you really expect The Boss to have it any other way? Just seemed fitting.

    Seeing little Yogi, who gets tinier and more frail every event, is always a treat, John. And Mattingly seemed really excited to be back, waving and smiling at the crowd in a more animated way than I’ve seen him before. Not sure why they invited Wells over, say, Cone or Guidry or others and I wonder if he and Torre spoke since they weren’t on great terms after Torre’s book. But it was a great night. Looking forward to the report after your kids go to the game tonight – and, of course, from you after the Sox game.

    Yeah, Jeff, the Boss’ statue is probably barking orders and firing the other statues! LOL. No question about it. If you put your ear next to its mouth, you can probably hear him.

    Amen, Christy! I agree wholeheartedly. Mo is allowed to go through his little shaky periods now and then. I only hope he’s not playing with bruised ribs like last year. He’d never tell anybody if he was hurt.

    Glad you made peace with George while he was still alive, Mike. Hope you had a good night’s sleep too!

  8. pennylane_1976@yahoo.com

    You know Jane, after your beautiful gush post about Nick Swisher last week, I started thinking about Curtis Granderson. He is another guy that I feel privileged to watch. He is such a class act. I was thrilled when the Yankees traded for him and, even when he wasn’t hitting well, I loved to see him in the pinstripes. I love him as a person; I love his diving catches in center field; I love how committed he was to improving that he allowed K. Long to alter his swing.
    Have you ever read his yahoo blog? He wrote a fabulous piece after Alex’s 600th homerun. You should check it out. It says a lot for Grandy that so many Tigers fans still love and miss him. They root for him because he is just a wonderful person. We are lucky that he is on our side now!

  9. Jane Heller

    I feel exactly the same way about Granderson, pennylane. Every time I watch him, even when he doesn’t play well, I feel lucky to have him as a Yankee. Yes, I’ve read his blog and saw the post about A-Rod’s 600th. He’s just such a classy guy in every respect that it’s even more exciting to see him have a night like last night. His second homer really was the knockout punch.

  10. diane.anziano@gmail.com

    The tribute to Steinbrenner was amazing – we cried from beginning to end. I had never seen his widow before either, Jane, she is adorable. The whole family was so moved and so in the moment. His grandkids are obviously missing him terribly. Yogi was adorable as he always is. I felt kind of cold seeing Torre, especially after hearing about his willingness to talk to the Mets — what’s he going to do for that team; hit clean up?

    Mariano scared me a little again last night but in the end a W is a W. That umpire had a ridiculously small strike zone – although he was equally strict to both teams it made the game horrible to sit through. I’m not even going to blame Logan or Gaudin because some of the pitches they threw were strikes that weren’t called.

    The team knew they had to win for George last night, but they have to know that the 28th W.S. this year is just as vital to his memory. GO YANKEES!!!

  11. dschaub@gpo.gov

    Grandis Curtison. Love it. Almost sounds BETTER! And, you know, if he keeps in this groove, it’s all I’ll call him now…
    So much has been so well said already by The Bloggers that it’s hard to add any on everyone & everything there. Just so glad that it went so smoothly, AND that we got a big W out of it.
    Of course, plenty still to worry about. The way that Joyce guy swung the bat his last two times up (deep fly to RF and game-ending one-hop shot to Tex), I’d be VERY careful with him today (among about, oh, eight others)…and that pitcher Shields, according to ESPN, is the opposite of Garza…he’s held our boyz to 3 earned runs or less in EVERY start against us this year. So we’d better GET all three tonite (and an unearned run or two would be nice), or it could be Splitsville.
    A little bitty bit worried about Mo? Yeah. But Christy’s so right; there simply ain’t nobody else!! ALL the Core Four has shown some real mileage this year — let’s hope there’s still some good traction on all four tires — because, looking at 2011, the AL East could be RIDICULOUS. So, let’s not. Savor all our moments right now. Keep on keepin’ on…!!

  12. Jane Heller

    It was great to see the whole Steinbrenner family together, Diane, including the grandkids. Also, I didn’t realize Jennifer (or is it Jessica) reconciled with Steve Swindal? After reading Torre’s book and the scene where Swindal is screaming at people from his boat, I have a vivid picture of him now. Speaking of which, I did feel a chill when I saw Torre. Then I read today’s Times about how he and Cashman hugged and tried to smooth over what Torre wrote about Cash in the book. If they’ve worked things out, good for them but somehow I doubt it.

    Shields. Oh. Do I really have to think about him right now, Dave? LOL. I guess I do. He’s not Garza. We don’t hit him very well. But maybe tonight will be different. I’m not worried about Mo. Yet. So let’s hope for a big win that doesn’t require a closer at all so he can have a night off!

    I didn’t hear Kay attacking Torre, Paul.

  13. yankeefansarah

    LOL, I really laughed out loud when i read ‘Grandis Curtison’. Is it just me or is Curtis Granderson one of the coolest names in baseball? There’s so many things you can do with it!
    The ceremony before the game really got to me. I lost it when I saw Mo staying out in front of the monument longer than everyone else. You’re right, the ceremony the Yankees put together was incredible. It made me proud to be a Yankee fan, seeing how classy it was done.
    And as for the game, it was a nice win for us. Always good to get the opening game of the series. And as I’ve said so many times before, I love Granderson, and I love seeing him do well. So if he’s going to help us win games, that just makes me like him more! ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. Jane Heller

    It is definitely one of the coolest names in the game, Sarah. And I totally mangled it last night! But now I’ll probably keep saying it that way. Yeah, that scene with Mo lingering in front of the monument was something. He’s such a spiritual guy who doesn’t take events like last night lightly.

  15. raysrenegade

    I wish they would of thrown something my way for that article, but they didn’t even push photo credentials for me to shoot the concert.
    Guess my love for the music outweighed the dollars and common sense (lol).
    Anyways, we do not write for the paychecks, we write for the love and inspirations of the game.
    I am looking for some solid inspiration tonight….Should be another great battle tonight.

    Rays Renegade


  16. Jane Heller

    Not even a photo credit, Renegade? Sheesh. Well, at least you got incredible exposure for your blog and your writing. Maybe it’ll trigger more gigs. Another great battle tonight? That’s what I’m afraid of. LOL.

  17. yankeesfan27

    Roy White is a class act, Jane. I met him at an auto signing about a year ago… some junky store in the mall… who knew?!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s