I figured everybody could use a laugh right about now. Sure, there was a meeting between Jeter and the Yankees yesterday, but there’s been nothing since and we’re still playing the waiting game. So tonight’s Jeter-related video is designed to elicit a derisive smile or two. It features two Boston Globe guys speculating about whether the Red Sox should jump into the melee and sign our captain. The young guy on the right doesn’t say much. The old guy on the left is long-time Globe columnist Bob Ryan. After you watch the video, tell me he’s not Andy Rooney on speed.
“What would happen if we got stuck with him?” Ryan asks. You should be so lucky, pal.
Moving on, I was not happy to read this afternoon that Alfredo Aceves, who spent all that time not being a productive member of the Yankees so he could rehab his back by not having surgery, had surgery….for breaking his collar bone in a bicycle accident. Sheesh. I realize we can’t keep players from leading normal lives, and riding a bike is not the same as playing basketball (I’m talking to you, Aaron Boone). But I sure wish we could encase them in bubble wrap or something.
Well, they were never really looking down. I mean the Yankees have been in first place for awhile now, but after tonight’s win they’re all alone at the top. Plus, most of the players’ ailing body parts are better.
Berkman’s ankle: Healed.
A-Rod’s calf: Probably fine.
Pettitte’s groin: Getting there.
Aceves’s back: Sounds okay.
Johnson’s wrist: Never mind.
Anyhow, Tex, Swisher, Posada stayed hot at the plate, and Granderson joined the party. Jeter? Am I the only one who thinks he’s not having a good time this season? He’s making the plays at short as gracefully as ever, but he’s missing that spark and I’m wondering if there’s something going on in his personal life. Or maybe he just needs a prescription for this.
As for Huuuughes, he got the “W,” thanks to his teammates’ offensive barrage, but it pains me to see him walk batters and pile up a lot of pitches. Doesn’t he remember that nibbling gets people in trouble?
I didn’t think the Yankees would end up winning this game. Not after Pettitte got pounded in the first inning and especially not after he came up lame and left the game after the second. If that makes me a bad fan, so be it. But considering that A.J.’s tantrum yesterday required the use of Robertson and Gaudin, I kept wondering how our much-maligned (including by me) bullpen would contain the Rays today. So how did they do it? They were really good!
Here’s a big, heartfelt shout-out to Robertson (huge game saver for him), Logan, Park, Joba and Mo. They let the hitters do their thing and kept a lid on the Rays’ scoring. And speaking of hitters, how about the bats today? David Price didn’t look sharp, but our guys took advantage. Just about everybody contributed. Loved the steals. Loved the sacs. Loved the RBIs. Loved that A-Rod is now at HR #598 and could very well get to #600 during this home stand. I was there in 2007 when he hit #500 against KC, and KC will be in the Bronx later in the week. Could we be seeing this?
Getting back to Andy, a grade 1 groin strain? Really? What are we supposed to do if he goes on the DL, which seems likely? Aceves isn’t around. Mitre and Gaudin don’t thrill me as starters. Hughes has an innings limit. All I can say is I wish Cashman hadn’t let this guy go.
Update: So Pettitte’s going on the DL and Mitre’s taking his place? For 4-5 weeks? Please wake me when somebody from the Yankees says, “Only kidding.”
I know. It’s only one day…in June. But first place is first place, and given all the injuries on this team it’s pretty satisfying for the Yankees to be where they are right now. What a game today, right? It had a little of everything – superb pitching by CC, a granny by Tex for his second homer in two days, a bunt by Swisher, an amazing catch by Gardner, a near-ejection by Posada (loved how Girardi had to clap his hand over JoPo’s mouth), another save by Mo, etc etc. What does it all mean as the Yanks head west?
It means that with the Rays, Red Sox and Jays all playing well, we’re in for a real dogfight.
(I decided to show kissing instead of fighting, but you get the idea.)
If A-Rod’s hip is OK and Tex gets hot and stays hot and Aceves comes back to help us out of the pen, I think we’ll be just fine. In the meantime, we’ve got Gardner. Seriously, I knew he was fast (duh) and could slap the ball around Damon style, but I never figured him to be this good. He’s hitting .312, for God’s sake. It seems as if he’s always on base and scoring a run. What a bargain he’s turned out to be.
Right now I’m in countdown mode. It’s only six days until I’ll be at Dodger Stadium watching the Yankees in person. Michael and I will be sitting with Twitter buddy @SunnySoCal, and lots of other friendly faces will be there too, including this blog’s Yankee she-fans, Peggy and Ladyjane, and our Dodger counterparts, Cat and Emma. And, of course, it’ll be a reunion for the players with Torre and Mattingly. I’ve gotten used to seeing Joe in Dodger blue, but not Donnie. Never Donnie.
When your cleanup hitter comes out of the game for Ramiro Pena, something’s wrong. It wasn’t until the Orioles were on their way to shutting down the Yanks when word finally came that A-Rod’s groin was acting up again.
Or should I say his adductor magnus. Sounds way more dignified. Anyhow, I’m concerned. I don’t want this injury to become, you know, nagging.
And I certainly don’t want it to be related to his hip surgery from last year. We already have Brett Gardner’s thumb to deal with, not to mention that Aceves’s back doesn’t seem to be getting better and Jorge still hasn’t been cleared to catch. (Why even bring up Nick Johnson and his wrist? No point.) It all makes me appreciate how lucky the Yankees were last year, injury wise. Sure, Wang’s loss was a blow, but once A-Rod came back in May the everyday lineup stayed remarkably healthy. Or am I “misremembering,” as someone famously said?
If Tex and Posada were hitting with any consistency, I wouldn’t panic about losing A-Rod for a few days (if, in fact, that’s all the time he’ll need to heal). Cano can’t do all the heavy lifting himself. Neither can Granderson. Speaking of whom, Melissa is an avid reader of Grandy’s blog and pointed out to me that he invites readers to ask him a question by emailing him here: firstname.lastname@example.org
So what should we ask him? If I were going to write to him about tonight’s loss to the O’s, here’s what I’d ask:
* Is it frustrating to watch A.J. hit batters and throw wild pitches?
* Was the O’s starter, Arrieta, really good or the Yanks’ offense kind of bad?
* Do you mind that Swisher seems to have taken the #2 spot instead of you?
* Did you get nervous when Kevin Russo was our only available pinch hitter?
* Were you mad at the third base ump for calling all those checked swings?
* Do you hate to lose as much as the fans do?
* Did you give A-Rod any medical tips for avoiding the DL?
Anybody else have a question for Grandy? He seems so nice I bet he’ll answer us.
As I’ve made clear on this blog many times, I’ve always thought this Yankee was God.
In fact, whenever he saves a game, as he did in tonight’s 6-4 win over the White Sox, I usually picture him this way.
But now along comes Ozzie Guillen, who spoke after the game in glowing terms of the Yankees captain, according to this MLB article. He said of Jeter:
“He is God.”
And Ozzie isn’t wrong. Jeet did have four RBIs, including a homer and a triple, and broke his tie with Junior Griffey for the most hits among active players. Not too shabby. But is he God and not Mo? Here’s more of what Ozzie said about Derek:
“The guy always has good-looking women around him too. I mean, God bless him.”
Now wait a second. How can Jeter be God if God is blessing him? I’m very confused. But here’s what I’m perfectly clear about — tonight’s win was a beautiful thing. Andy didn’t have it, but he didn’t fall apart either, and Aceves, Marte, Joba and Mo did the rest. Winning teams are all about somebody stepping up when needed. Tonight, we had several somebodys…and at least two Gods.
Not this way…
Or this way…
Or even this way…
Not tonight in Baltimore anyway. What a putrid game for the Yankees, wasn’t it? Especially after Hughes gave yet another gutsy performance? I was working while the game was on, so I had the TV on in the background. Every time the Yanks would do something stupid (walk a batter, hit a batter, make a throwing error, kill a rally), I would turn around to look and then do this.
Well, I felt like it. Maybe the players were tired from all their parading around Washington. Or maybe they ate some bad crab cakes in Baltimore. On the other hand, maybe the O’s were just due for a win, poor darlings. All I know is that it was as if the real Yankees had been taken over by little league Yankees.
I also know that we need Chan Ho Park to come off the DL…And for Nick Johnson to stop walking and start hitting…And for A-Rod, Tex and Grandy to be the mashers we know they are…And for Cano to ride this beautiful streak of his until the end of the season when he will surely win the AL Batting Crown.
Things will be better with CC on the mound tomorrow. How do I know that? Because there’s not much for the players to do in Baltimore, so they’ll get a good night’s sleep.
Before I sign off, I’d like to give a shout out to she-fans extraordinaire and friends of this blog, Serena and Lisa, whose own Traveling Baseball Babes is one of my favorite blogs. They’re organizing a terrific fundraising event in Hicksville, LI in June called “Fred K’s Cancer.” Both of their fathers are named Fred and both men are cancer survivors (and big baseball fans), so Serena and Lisa decided to educate people about their diseases in a very special way. They created a Fred K’s Cancer blog, so please check it out and read about their fab event!