Sunday, July 15, 2012

Yankees Snatch Defeat From the Jaws of Victory

Cano's nap cost the Yankees dearly - courtesy of
No, that's not really how the saying goes, but it's apropos considering the way Sunday's Yankees-LA Angels game turned out. If I told you prior to the game that the Yankees would score eight runs and you knew Jered Weaver was starting for LA, you would know for sure that the Yankees would come away with a sweep of the three game series. Only that's not what happened.

The Yankees ran themselves out of a pair of innings and the end of the bullpen let the game get out of reach. The final was a 10-8 hitter's duel that came out in the Angels' favor. The Yankees did indeed get to Weaver, who entered the game with a 1.96 ERA, for five runs in seven innings, but the All-Star right-hander won his 11th game.

Yankees' starter Ivan Nova was far from his beat (6 IP, 6 ER), and the Angels tacked on three more runs against recently acquired reliever Chad Qualls, and and another against youngster D.J. Mitchell. The Yankees still had a chance to come back in the 9th inning despite being down five runs.

Angels' closer Ernesto Frieri had not allowed a run in 26 appearances since being acquired from the San Diego Padres on May 3. But in a non-save situation in the series finale, he got his first taste of the Yankees' power lineup.

Robinson Cano, who had extended his hitting sreak to 18 games earlier in the day, drew a lead off walk and Mark Teixeira followed with a 2-run home run to cut the deficit to 10-7.  Mike Scioscia pulled his young closer in favor of lefty Scott Downs after Frieri walked Nick Swisher. The Yankees had rallied from three runs down on Friday night against Downs and it appeared they would again when Raul Ibanez ricocheted a single off of Downs to bring the tying run to the plate.

Downs came back to strike out Andruw Jones and got Russell Martin on a fielders choice to put the game in the hands of Derek Jeter. The Yankees' captain walked to load the bases for Curtis Granderson,who put up a great eight pitch at-bat. The Yankees centerfielder had homered earlier in the game, and just got out in front of a Downs' pitch and pulled it foul before he walked to force in a run.

That turned things over to Alex Rodriguez, who had quieted some of his critics with a pair of hits on Saturday and his 14th home run of the season in the 1st inning on Sunday.  But right-hander Kevin Jepsen  got A-Rod to pop out to Albert Pujols to end the ball game.

The Yankees, perhaps, would have had a lead entering the 9th inning had Cano been awake earlier in the game. With A-Rod leading off third, Cano got caught napping at 1st base in the 3rd inning. Weaver picked him off and Cano was quickly tagged out in a run down. Rodriguez tried to score on the play, but shortstop Erick Aybar gunned him down at the plate for a very ugly double play and huge rally killer.

Evidently, Russell Martin didn't get too much confidence back in his bat after Friday night's game winning hit. He tried a bunt in a pair of at-bats, one of which he popped in the air and turned into a double play when Eric Chavez was doubled off base.

Chavez continued to show though that when healthy he can still drive the ball. After he hit just two home runs in 2011, Chavez smacked his eighth of the year on Sunday.

Nova was victimized by three home runs - Aybar and Pujols in the 1st inning and Maicer Izturis in the 6th. Mark Trumbo added another off Mitchell in the 9th.

Mike Trout had just another day at the office- two hits, an RBI, and a run scored. Shockingly, he didn't steal a base.

1 comment:

  1. I get the NY Daily News and looked to see how the Yankee hot streak would be handled Sunday (today).
    What do we get. Yet another column by Yank-hater, Wilpon-Mets mouthpiece Mike Lupica about A-Rods salary, PED use, a knock on Yankee front office..blah blah.
    How about a piece about the great Cano, Yank’s super bullpen, Soriano, the 8 game lead after dire predictions post-Rivera and Pettitte..etc..
    But nooooo. More negative hate from bitter Lupica.
    I can’t stand Lupica.
    He’s best buddies with Fred and Jeff Wilpon and a Boston College grad, main reasons he’s been trashing the Yankees for the last 20 years.
    But we have a chance to get back at him with immediate gratification.
    He has a radio show on ESPN (1050 am and 98.7 FM) every weekday from noon to 1 p.m. EST. You can also listen online at
    And of course, he continues to bash the Yankees – always mentioning payroll, killing A-Rod, saying the Mets are the best New York team etc..blah. blah.
    Let’s all call him at 1-800-919-ESPN (3776) as much as possible and get on his Yankee-hating!
    He’s been flustered by some angry Yank fan calls. We can get him good! Let’s do it!