Friday, June 12, 2009

Fenway Failure

Yankees in Fenway - Fail

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
NY Yankees
0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0 0
3 10 1
0 1 0 0 0 0 0 3 X
4 8 0

WP - Saito (1-0) SV - Papelbon (16) LP - Sabathia (5-4)

When Nick Green singled off CC Sabathia to start the 8th inning last night, an ominous sense came over me. The feeling got stronger when Sabathia couldn’t put away Dustin Pedroia, after being ahead of him 1-2, and ended up walking him in a 10-pitch at-bat. The feeling became overwhelming when Joe Girardi left an obviously cooked Sabathia in the game. The end result was a 4-3 Red Sox win and a 2-game Sox lead in the AL East. It also gave Boston victories in all eight games the two teams have played this season.

The Yankees had rallied from a one run deficit to take a 3-1 lead in the 7th. Francisco Cervelli doubled down the left field line to score Melky Cabrera from first base with the tying run. Four batters later Alex Rodriguez ripped a 2-run double to the gap in left-center off Manny DelCarmen to give the Bombers their only lead of the night.

But things fell apart for Sabathia in the 8th. He had pitched an outstanding game, having just allowed a solo home run to David Ortiz (Yes, Papi did take a curtain call) in the 2nd inning. But as YES announcer John Flaherty prematurely praised Sabathia’s game, things went to pieces for the big left-hander. After Green and Pedroia walked, Sabathia hung an 0-1 breaking pitch to J.D. Drew. The right fielder laced it into center field for a run scoring single to cut the Sox deficit to one. Girardi finally pulled his starter after 123 pitches and sent for the normally reliable Al Aceves. He was anything but reliable last night.

Kevin Youkilis greeted Aceves will a soft single to right to load the bases with no one out and Jason Bay followed with a line drive to left that short hopped Johnny Damon for a game tying single. The Yankees lack of arms in the outfield hurt them on the very next play when Mike Lowell lofted a fly ball to medium left-center field. Take your pick, center fielder Brett Gardner or the even weaker armed Damon. Gardner made the catch and made a throw that was nowhere near home plate nor had any zip on it.

Just like that, Boston had the lead back. Jonathan Papelbon retired the side in order in the 9th, with Mark Teixeira making the only noise- a line out to Youkilis to end the game.

Game Notes

Red Sox’ starter Brad Penny hit Alex Rodriguez in the lower back with a pitch in the 1st inning. After all four umpires conferred, both sides were given a warning. If the umpires felt Penny had purposely thrown at A-Rod he should have been tossed from the game. Otherwise, no warning should have been issued until the Yankees had the chance for some payback.

Nick Swisher deserves to be benched for tonight’s opener with the Mets. One night after being doubled off first base on a soft liner hit right in front of him, Swisher was doubled off second base on a fly ball to the wall in left. Both plays killed potential rallies.

Chien-Ming Wang will get one more start and Girardi will take things from there. The Wanger is set to face the Florida Marlins on Wednesday.

The current Red Sox joined the 1912 Red Sox and 1990 A’s as the only teams to win their first eight games in a season against the Yankees.

The first part of the Subway Series starts tonight at Yankee Stadium. The Mets are coming off a series loss to their division rivals, the Philadelphia Phillies.

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