For most of 2013, the Yankee pitchers have been bailing out the offense with strong performances that manage to conceal an utter lack of offense more often than not. Without the rotation being among the better ones in MLB, the Yankees would be in a world of trouble beyond already feeling like this is a ship rapidly taking on water like the Titanic. Andy Pettitte didn't have much tonight, and he failed to keep the game close after the offense scored him three runs in one inning without managing to score any of them via a hit.
In 6.2 innings, Pettitte gave up five runs on nine hits. The hits just seemed to keep coming and everything was solid contact. He was relieved by Joba Chamberlain, who gave up Evan Longoria's second homer of the game. Chamberlain has now allowed runs in four of his last five outings and seven runs in that time. Boone Logan was not much better, giving up a double and a two-run homer to Yunel Escobar that went into Monument Park. Unlike Joba, Logan has been very good this season, but he is there to get out lefties and he gave up two hits to them tonight.
It's sad that any deficit against this offense seems like it might be insurmountable, especially when they are facing a struggling pitcher like Matt Moore. Vernon Wells has not only plummeted back to Earth, but he is plunging through the outer core as we speak. He's a couple bad games (normal games?) away from 9 for his last 100. Really. Zoilo Almonte did pinch hit for Wells in the ninth and picked up his first big league hit. There weren't many bright spots in this game, so at least there was that.
Brett Gardner continued his hot hitting with two singles and a walk. He's picked up a hit in 22 of his last 26 games. Reid Brignac singled to snap his 0-18 streak, but he's just another black hole that gets put in the lineup far too often because of the lack of a real replacement. With the bases loaded against Moore in the sixth, runs scored on a ball that bounced away from Lobaton, who was probably stunned that Robinson Cano swung at a pitch that bounced in front of home plate. Cano drove in the next run on a sac fly and Travis Hafner got the last man in on a ground out. It was pretty ugly, but it was more than two runs, which seemed to be the ceiling for a while.
If there is a silver lining to be had, it may be that it's hard to imagine the offense being worse than it currently is. The goal is just to survive until hopeful reinforcements can arrive. As long as so many black holes remain in the lineup on a nightly basis, that will seem like an uphill battle.
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