I Can’t Just Write When News Is Good

Thankfully I had a good deal of work to do today, which kept me from the bulk of the sweep clincher that the Yanks suffered/self-inflicted, 5-4.  CC was excellent except for a four-run fourth, allowing the big inning which haunted the Yankees all series–against an undermanned Angels lineup, to remind.  He made few mistakes, but one–which I saw–was leaving a pitch up and over the plate to Kendrick, who smashed it over Hinske in right center for an RBI double.

The offense was on the whole decent, but wasted some prime opportunities.  For example, in the sixth the Yanks had first and second with one out, but Cano flew out to left and Hinske struck out to end the threat.  But the seventh and eighth were the real killers.  With the Yanks trailing 5-2 in the seventh and a run, the Yanks had the bases loaded with no outs–and scored no more runs when Teixeira fanned and A-Rod grounded into a DP–killer. The eighth was hardly better.  Again the Yanks loaded the bases with no outs and down 5-2 when Melky’s single drove in Matsui, 5-3, still no outs.  Jorge hit a sac fly to score Cano and cut the lead to a mere run.  But Swish, pinch-hitting for Brett the Jet, hit a rocket low and through the box that Oliver stabbed before it skipped off the mound, then doubled off Melky.  The seventh was poor execution, the eighth bad luck.  But they spelled the end of the Yanks’ best legitimate chances.

I liked Jeter back batting second behind The Jet leading off.  If he plays and JD does not, Brett the Jet should lead off instead of hit ninth.  He’s been too good and too dangerous to have at the bottom of the lineup, and with Jeter tearing the cover off the ball (.321), it’s a fine decision.

I’m not going to get all peaches-and-cream after the Yanks got swept in Anaheim, for I thought that, typical problems in Anaheim aside, two of three was attainable.  All three losses bothered me, for some of the same (blown leads and shoddy pitching in games 1 and 2; allowing the big inning) and some divergent reasons (blown opportunities in the third game).  That said, considering all the Yankees have weathered (injuries, inconsistent pitching and hitting, a team offensive swoon, occasionally trustworthy #3-5 starters), the team is a mere three games back, is fourteen above .500 and, as of now, is in the playoffs.  That said, this team is capable of more and, as I discussed with Frank the Sage a week ago, I still get the strong feeling that, for various reasons, we still have not seen the best that this team has to offer.  That’s saying a lot, especially considering how well they played on the road before the series in Anaheim, that they were 51-34 before this weekend, and they lead or are near the top of various batting metrics in baseball.  Yes, the Yanks could be better but, as we have seen last year and, at times this year, a whole lot worse off than they are now.

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Published in: on July 13, 2009 at 12:28 am  Leave a Comment  

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