One of the weirdos in my ignominious dating resume was a guy who sat in the right field bleachers and refused to stand up for the 7th inning stretch. Not the "God Bless America" part, which he was on board with. But the "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" part, which incensed him with the same degree of heated passion and fervor that most people reserve for things like stem cell research or Eagles fans.
"It's NOT 1, 2, 3 strikes you're out! It's NOT. It's 1, 2, 3, strikes AND THE CATCHER DOESN'T DROP THE BALL OR IF HE DOES HE THROWS IT TO FIRST, AND YOU'RE OUT. GOD."
So, that's what I was up against.
But today, for the first time, his completely insane stance on the Most Pressing Issue Facing The Game, actually holds some merit. Because twice a strikeout was not a strikeout.
And that's how bad today's game was, that I'm attributing any modicum of credibility to a guy who wanted to start an awareness campaign about the pitch in the MLB logo. ("People need to understand it's a ball and not a strike.")
In today's game, the Yankees dropped their second straight to the Angels, losing 8-14 and doing nothing to debunk rumors of their powerlessness against this team. To really drive the point home, the Yanks have posted almost identical box scores for the last 2 games, while still trotting out dramatically different run output. In fact, the game bore a striking resemblance to last night's game, which is too bad, since the things they did last night didn't work out too well and probably shouldn't have been applied again.
Andy Pettite started for the Yankees, not before having some of the "Less IP is More" Kool Aid that the rest of the club's been buying in buik. Over 4 and a third, he got tagged for 6 runs and 7 hits. Which begs the question what the hell is going on with the pitching conditioning? When you have Andy going 2 bad starts in a row with the same butchered line score, Phil Coke giving up 4 runs on 3 hits in just 1 IP, and Joba enrolled in some kind of 401(k) plan that takes 2 mph out his fastball every 2 weeks, I'm wondering at what point Dave Eiland is going crack the whip and think about being a little more authoritative than a beached walrus.
What can you say about the offense? In the last 2 games, they've banked 23 hits to the Angels' 29. Alex Rodriguez had his 53rd multihomer game, with a 2-run blast in the 1st and a solo in the 8th. Same goes for Eric Hinske, who ponied up 3 RBIs off his own multihomer day. The Yankees could have taken this one. Despite Jered Weaver's strong 9K outing over 6 innings, the Yankees' slugging worked him hard. Robinson Cano was the other notable bat in the game, going 2 for 3 with an RBI.
The problem with that is that the Angels' lineup is just as brutal, even without Vladimir Guerrero and Torii Hunter terrorizing pitchers. And the aggressive offense may scare the cornbred Twinkies, but the Angels, once again, didn't back down after being in a 4-0 hole.
Trailing 4-1 in the bottom of the 5th, the Angels responded with 7 runs, with every gluttonous batter hemorrhaging RBIs. Brandon Wood knocked out a 2-run homer, Howie Kendrick contributed a 2-run single, Mike Napoli- a 2-run double, Erick Aybar- RBI triple. Bobby Abreu must have had 2,092 RBIs (3), and he also apparently learned how to play RF.
How the Halos even had baserunners was a mystery to me, every base hit seemed like it was a base-clearer. But no, somehow they managed do the inverse of the Yankee Trademarked Strategy and capitalize on RISP, instead of waiting til the bases are empty. I don't know, maybe the Yanks are agoraphobic and don't like to be on the basepath when anyone else is. Just throwing some ideas out.
Despite our spotty yet productive offense, the amorphous totem pole of pitchers is what the Yankees are impaling themselves on. I won't waste any energy reiterating what every fan unfortunately already knows and even more unfortunately has to bear witness to every other night. Putting aside any issues of skill, talent, control..(the luxuries), the Yankees need to first give them some structure! I feel like a principle whenever I watch them. "Look at them! They're just running amok!"
Somebody needs to discipline them and tell them where to sit on the bus, or there's total anarchy.
David Robertson came in and imploded for a healthy 4 runs. Brett Tomko was next up, and when Tomko's boasting the best showing of the game because he only gave up 1 HR, then it's horrifying. Phil Coke did his best Sean Henn impression, tacking an error on the board, and then joining Robertson and my ex in the, "1, 2, 3 strikes you're NOT out" faction. God, I hate that. It's like the NFL's safety. A delightful unexpected treat as long as you're not on the other end of it.
And then there's your ball game. See you tomorrow with CC Sabathia going up against John Lackey. I have faith roundboy's too averse to extended periods of time without food, for him to allow another slugfest. I predict the Yanks pull out a W, 6-2 final.