Angels 11 Yankees 4: Giese Great But Bullpen Implodes

When I think of implosions, I now have two prime examples upon which to draw–the 1898 implosion of the USS Maine [a picture of whose wreckage is above] that was erroneously blamed on Spanish forces, leading to the Spanish-American War, and today’s bullpen meltdown hereafter known as The Great Bullpen Implosion. After Giese gave a tremendous effort, allowing but a solo home run to Teixeira in the sixth inning in his excellent three-hit stint, Veras, then Edwar, and finally Robertson gave it all back and then some today in a crushing 11-4 loss. Veras, Edwar, and Robertson simply could not have been any worse. What a colossal waste.

Conversely, Giese could not have been any better, matching Angels ace John Lackey scoreless inning for scoreless inning through five. The Yanks got on the board in the sixth with back-to-back solo homers from A-Rod, his 26th this year and 544th of his career, and Giambi, his 23rd this year and his 387th of his career, 2-0 Yanks. But Teixeira struck back in the bottom of the sixth, blasting a solo homer of his own to cut it to 2-1. Otherwise, Giese was truly outstanding, allowing only three hits, the solo shot, walking one and fanning five on 83 pitches/58 strikes. He fanned Vlad three straight times and, at one point, fanned Teixeira, Vlad, and Hunter in succession. Giese was amazing and will certainly start again. I sure hope Giese Kennedy [OOPS, thanks Mike S.] was taking notes during today’s game.

The problems began for the Yankees in the seventh. Pudge led off with a single, Melky executed a perfect hit-and-run, singling him to third, and JD’s RBI single made it 3-1, getting the run right back. Jeter sac bunted them to second and third, one out. I had fewer problems with this than usual. While Jeter should hit, he’s grounded into 18 double plays. Plus, with the Yankees in control of the game to this point, Abreu or A-Rod should have been able to deliver a hit for the runs. Should have, but didn’t. Abreu’s ground ball nabbed Melky at home, and A-Rod fanned to end the inning. Anderson then led off the bottom half with a solo shot and, after Veras got Kendrick and Rivera quickly, Napoli also hit a solo shot to tie the game. Veras blew it, yet it only got worse.

Cano’s hot shot in the top of the eighth deflected off Shields and started a 4-6-3 DP. Then BOOM! the implosion came in full force. Vlad tattooed Edwar’s first pitch to give the Angels the lead 4-3, Hunter doubled, Anderson singled off Edwar’s first pitch to him scoring Hunter, 5-3, Kendrick reached on Cano’s throwing error and promptly stole second, BOOM! Rivera’s double made it 7-3, ending Edwar’s atrocious no-out stint. Robertson came in and poured more gas on the fire. Napoli singled, Figgins singled 8-3, Figgins then stole second and a wild pitch scored Napoli 9-3, Izturis scored Figgins with a single 10-3, and Teixeira’s 4-3 was the first out as the Angels batted around. Vlad’s single scored Izturis, 11-3. BOOM! BOOM! Jeter’s sac fly in the ninth provided the final score.

So much for the bullpen being a strength–2 IP, 11 hits, 10 runs 9 earned, 1 walk, 3 K’s, 3 homers. So much for Giese’s excellent start. So much for the 2-0 and 3-1 leads the Yanks had. So much for holding it down for Marte and Mariano. So much for the possibility of winning the series in Anaheim. So much for that. Hey, maybe Veras, Edwar, and Robertson can shrug at their shoddy performances as Ian E. Neumann did, Mr. “What, me worry?” and perhaps Girardi will cover for them, too.

Disgraceful. 2-4 on the road trip, 7 back before Tampa plays tonight, back to only nine games above .500. Let’s put the Yankees recent woes into perspective. The Yankees started the second half five games above .500 at 50-45, six games behind Tampa. They’re now 63-54, seven behind Tampa. In 22 games, the Yankees have moved four more games above .500 while losing at least a half-game in the AL East with 45 games to play. One-third of the way through the second half, the Yanks have lost ground. Their pitching has abandoned them the last couple weeks, the bullpen couldn’t have been worse, and I doubt many Yankees fans could feel worse than they do right now about the Yankees’ prospects. At least Kennedy is hanging loose.

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Published in: on August 9, 2008 at 7:34 pm  Comments (6)  

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. remember the maine…

    kennedy hanging loose…

    thank you…i needed a laugh.

    i resigned myself to a yankee-free october when we couldn’t beat the rookie with the 7.40 ERA the day after joba went down…

    worst yankee team i can remember.

  2. I think you meant that you hoped Kennedy was taking notes, which is EXACTLY what I wrote on my own blog before checking yours out. Like you, I wrote Implosion. Great minds think alike 🙂

    Mike, I’ve seen worse. FAR worse. 1990. 1967. nothing more needs saying….The 1990 team was 0-12 that year vs. the A’s. Ouch.

  3. I’m glad you got a laugh out of it, Mike. Ah yes, Matt Harrison, last week’s anti-Yankees Koufax. Not a good sign.

    Thanks, Mike S. I did a spell check but not a context check. Then again, unlike Kennedy, I’m sure Giese took notes on his own start. Implosion had to be the theme of today’s post. Sterling was–as we are–right on the money in characterizing it as such, and was unusually–and rightly–harsh during the broadcast. I ended up briefly relaying the story of the USS Maine to GLG during the broadcast as a result. I’m not sure I deserve being thought of in your class of baseball mind, Mr. Sommer.

    I have to agree, 1990 was the worst I’ve seen. 1967 was before my time. So many low points in 1990–Andy Hawkins’s complete-game no hit loss, Mattingly hurt and fading, Alvaro Espinoza at short, Balboni at DH, no steady starter with a winning record, averaged well under four runs a game. One gigantic wretch of a year.

  4. yeah I’m sure you have, but I haven’t.

    Except for the couple of nice winning streaks it just hasn’t been a lot of fun this year

  5. No, this year hasn’t Mike. I’m glad to have been discussing it and other things with you. But it would be infinitely more fun with the Yanks about 15 more games above .500. One of these years…

  6. You do have to give the Angels credit. They are really good and on top of that, you have to give Giese credit for holding them to 1 earned run. Kennedy laughing after getting destroyed might be the single worst thing of his career and if he doesn’t turn his career around, that might be the thing Yankee fans remember him for, laughing after getting his butt kicked.


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