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Category Archives: 2010 Season

New York Yankees 2010 Season Blog

CC Sabathia’s Post Season Numbers

I know the thing to do in regard to post season numbers is to pick on A-Rod until there’s nothing left, so I thought I’d take a look at C.C. Sabathia‘s numbers instead.  Guess what?  Outside of 2009, they ain’t so good.

Why is this a problem?  It’s not, really – but it is the exact same argument everyone makes when they take A-Rod out back behind the shed and shoot him.

old-yeller

It was all fun and games until A-Rod didn't hit a home run in the ALDS...

Year Tm Series Opp ERA G GS IP H R ER HR BB IBB SO HBP BK WP BF WHIP H/9 HR/9 BB/9 SO/9 SO/BB
2001 CLE ALDS SEA 3 1 1 6 6 2 2 0 5 1 5 0 0 0 28 1.833 9 0 7.5 7.5 1
2007 CLE ALDS NYY 5.40 1 1 5 4 3 3 2 6 1 5 0 0 0 24 2 7.2 3.6 10.8 9 0.83
2007 CLE ALCS BOS 10.45 2 2 10 17 12 12 1 7 1 9 3 0 1 53 2.323 15 0.9 6.1 7.8 1.29
2008 MIL NLDS PHI 12.27 1 1 3.2 6 5 5 1 4 1 5 0 0 0 21 2.727 15 2.5 9.8 12.3 1.25
2009 NYY ALDS MIN 1.35 1 1 6.2 8 2 1 0 0 0 8 1 0 1 28 1.2 11 0 0 10.8
2009 NYY ALCS LAA 1.13 2 2 16 9 2 2 1 3 0 12 0 0 0 59 0.75 5.1 0.6 1.7 6.8 4
2009 NYY WS PHI 3.29 2 2 13 11 5 5 3 6 2 12 0 0 0 57 1.244 7.2 2 4 7.9 2
2010 NYY ALDS MIN 4.50 1 1 6 5 4 3 1 3 0 5 1 0 0 27 1.333 7.5 1.5 4.5 7.5 1.67
2010 NYY ALCS TEX 6.30 2 2 10 17 7 7 2 4 0 10 0 1 1 48 2.1 15 1.8 3.6 9 2.5
2011 NYY ALDS DET 6.23 3 2 8.2 10 6 6 1 8 2 11 0 0 1 41 2.077 10 1 8.3 11.4 1.38
6 Seasons (10 Series) 4.81 16 15 86 93 48 46 12 46 8 82 5 1 4 386 1.616 9.7 1.3 4.8 8.6 1.78
5 ALDS 4.18 7 6 32 33 17 15 4 22 4 34 2 0 2 148 1.701 9.2 1.1 6.1 9.5 1.55
1 NLDS 12.27 1 1 3.2 6 5 5 1 4 1 5 0 0 0 21 2.727 15 2.5 9.8 12.3 1.25
3 ALCS 5.20 6 6 36 43 21 21 4 14 1 31 3 1 2 160 1.569 11 1 3.5 7.7 2.21
1 WS 3.29 2 2 13 11 5 5 3 6 2 12 0 0 0 57 1.244 7.2 2 4 7.9 2

See?  2009 is sparkling, but the other years… CC is not really getting it done.  I guess way back in 2001 was a fine start, but recently, outside of 2009, the guy hasn’t done much of anything.  How many more years of this are going to be acceptable until the A-Rod haters turn on CC?  Maybe none – after all, Sabathia is the guy who gets the Yankees there during the regular season – but you have to admit, 2010 and 2011 have been a bust.

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Yankees head for the golf course

Today, I received the ‘Vote Yankees for the 2010 This Year in Baseball Awards’ email from MLB.com. Are they kidding? Sorry if I’m not in the mood to vote for anything for the Yankees right now.

Not after Friday night. I’m still a bit confused why Joe Girardi elected to flip flop Phil Hughes and Andy Pettitte in the starting rotation. Sure, Hughes had better road numbers than home numbers in 2010, but I’d think you’d want the better pitcher – this case, Pettitte – to pitch before Hughes. At least that’s how I’d do it.

The Yankees tied the game at 1 in the top of the fourth and Texas immediately answered: Hughes pitched OK through the first four inngs, but when the tough got going (and by tough, I mean the Rangers), Hughes got shipped to the clubhouse for David Robertson, who promptly stunk up the place as bad as Hughes had or worse. After putting up a 4 spot, the game was over, and so was the Yankees season. Everybody knew it. You could smell it, feel it in the air - the air had gone out of the balloon. The Rangers didn’t pop champagne in the top of the sixth, but they may as well have. The Yankees only had 3 damn hits and scored their only run on a wild pitch. Like the rest of the series, the Yankees sucked in game 6. They lost to Cloby Lewis twice, for cryin’ out loud!

But don’t fret: this isn’t the end of BomberBanter.com until next spring, it’s just the last post of the 2010 Season. I still have a ton to do around here:

Not to mention blog the off season – after the World Series ends, the hunt for Cliff Lee begins!

Yankees win first eliminatin game

Today was kill or be killed – and the Yankees responded.

CC Sabathia didn’t have his best stuff, giving up 11 hits but no walks and 7 Ks in 6 IP.  Kerry Wood did a great job with 2 scoreless innings and 3 Ks and no walks.  Even though the Yankees were holding a 7-2 lead, Mariano Rivera pitched a scoreless ninth – again, it’s an elimination game, and the rest of the bullpen has really faltered of late.

Finally, finally, finally the Yankees have responded with runners in scoring position, even if they were 2-11 and left 7 on base.  The Yankees collected 6 walks, which enabled them to score 7 runs on 9 hits, while Texas suffered 2 runs on 13 hits.  Nick Swisher and Robinson Cano hit back to back jacks and Curtis Granderson gave that extra run in the 8th with a solo homer of his own, so that’s getting it down with the power.

Friday’s elimination game 2 is a rematch of Phil Hughes and Colby Lewis.  Hughes can’t possibly pitch as bad as he did last time – right?

Yankees and Girardi stink up the place

new york yankeesImagine your team’s moral as a balloon:  before the game starts, your team is pumped.  As a manager, you do the best job you can to keep the balloon full of air as the slings and arrows of the opposition and circumstance do their worst to pop your shiz.

I’ve already been critical of Joe Girardi’s decision to flip flop Phil Hughes and Andy Pettitte in the rotation – I understand Hughes has better road numbers than home numbers, game 3 is usually considered the swing game of a post season series and the Cliff Lee vs Andy Pettitte match up gives the Yankees the best opportunity to win game 3, but I don’t think this was the best strategy towards winning the series.  I thought the Yankees should have managed and played games 1 and 2 like elimination games and thrown Phil Hughes in game 3 and take their chances, but it didn’t go down like that.  They stole game 1 and were lucky to do so, and when they came home knotted with the Rangers at a game a piece, I started to worry, and more than at any other time in his tenure, I started to question Joe Girardi’s managing style.

Down two games to one, I fully expected CC Sabathia to start game four on short rest, but it didn’t happen.  If they lost the game under this scenario, they would have had to of asked Phil Hughes pitch the elimination game on short rest, and I guess they didn’t want to do that, so AJ Burnett started game four last night.

new york yankeesIn the bottom of the fourth inning, A-Rod was hit by a pitch to lead off, then Robinson Cano hit a single.  With 1st and 2nd and no outs, I fully expected a bunt… which never came.  Nick Swisher ended up striking out.  I know Swisher is a great hitter and the Yankees were playing for the big inning, but they’ve been so bad at executing in this series that I thought Girardi would bunt for sure.  He didn’t.

The Yankees put more base runners on again in the bottom of the 5th and they failed to score again, but even more demoralizing was the injury to Mark Teixeira.  For current team moral after the bottom of the 5th, please see the balloon image at right.  Joe Girardi was going to need to take his balloon management to a new level to keep things from falling apart.

aj burnett

new york yankeesI think it’s fair to say that AJ Burnett exceeded my expectations for 5.2 innings.  When he came into the sixth inning, I thought he was clearly tired after just one batter.  Joba Chamberlain had been warming up for a long while, so after the intentional walk, I thought Joba was coming in for sure, but no such luck – and BOOM, home run by Bengie Molina – a guy you don’t necessarily expect to hit a home run, but a guy who was challenged by a tired pitcher who hadn’t pitched in three weeks who just walked a guy (intentional or not, I feel it’s a rhythm killer for pitchers) and hasn’t been great at locating the ball this year.  Why did he face Molina in the first place?  Awful managing.  It was pure divine providence that Burnett got any outs in the sixth in the first place – Girardi was already gambling with house money, he let it ride and he lost big.  After that home run by Molina, the game was over.  All the air was out of the balloon.

Tonight, the Yankees send CC Sabathia to the hill as they face elimination.  I honestly have no idea what to expect from tonight’s game – the Yankees could step up and hit with runners on base and Sabathia could turn in his first quality post season start and they could win the game.  Or they might get crushed.  Coming back from a 3-1 game deficit is a tall order, and with the way the Yankees have been playing in this series, I don’t think they can do it.

I hope they prove me wrong.

Rangers take series lead

Nothing went the Yankees way last night.

Brett Gardner beat Cliff Lee to 1st base and missed the bag during his head first slide by maybe an inch. Derek Jeter’s first inning home run bid fell just short. Cliff Lee was dominant all night long. When Gardner lead off with a single, the Yankees couldn’t get him around. The Yankees bullpen, which was dominant in games 1 and 2, was beat last night – every ground ball found a hole.

There’s not much else to say about game 3 – Cliff Lee had what, 12 Ks last night? That’s dominant. The Yankees just couldn’t hit him, and they worked his pitch count pretty well, too, and he still wouldn’t relent. Besides the first inning, Andy Pettitte pitched well, but it was all for nothing. It’s hard to complain much about the bullpen when the offense gets shut out.

All things considered, the Yankees should be happy they’re down by only one game, considering how the Texas Rangers have outplayed them in all three games. As far as I can tell, the Yankees are still going with AJ Burnett in Game 4, which I think is a mistake of disastrous proportions.

Joe Girardi is open to second guessing for flip-flopping Andy Pettitte and Phil Hughes in the rotation – I think he liked the Pettitte vs Lee match up (I did too), but given that Lee pitched exactly how he was expected, and so did Pettitte, it seems like they would have been better off with Pettitte in game 2 and Phil Hughes in game 3. Pettitte isn’t the sort of pitcher who implodes in big games and neither is Lee, so you figure maybe starting Pettitte in game 2 gave you a better chance to win a game you had any chance of winning in the first place.

Also, Game 5 starts Wednesday at 4 PM. Way to go, MLB – I don’t have anything to do on Wednesday, anyway… oh wait, I have to work, like everybody else.

Well, I guess they’re really going to send AJ Burnett to the mound tonight. I still think they’re nuts, or the Yankees think they’re that much better than the Rangers. When they play like it, I’ll believe it.

Yankees vs Rangers ALCS game 2 review & 3 preview

I can’t talk about game 3 until I get game 2 out of my system. The idea that Joe Girardi started Phil Hughes in game 2 of the ALCS becaues he has a 15 1-3 scoreless innings in Arlington streak is ridiculous – he started him there because he decided he’d rather have Andy Pettitte go head to head with Cliff Lee instead of Hughes, and that makes sense – relying on a 15 1-3 scoreless innings streak in an away ballpark that dates back to way back in… uhm what year was that? 2007? – is insane. (Joe Torre was managing the team when Hughes was pitching a perfect game in Texas before he heard a pop in his hamstring that pretty much derailed the rest of his season.) So to all you folks who were pushing that angle as the storyline to this game, you’re idiots. Isn’t a playoff game enough of a storyline for you knuckleheads?

The Yankees lost game 2 because Hughes straight up stunk; he just didn’t give his team a chance to win by virtue of his nonexistent fastball command. And if somebody knows the reason why Jorge Posada would throw through to second base with a runner on third, I’d love to hear it.

Tonight, Andy Pettitte and Cliff Lee will square off. I know everybody has written this game in the books already as a Rangers win (including me), but that’s a bit premature. Andy Pettitte is nearly unbeatable after Yankees loses and the game is at home, after all – and the Yankees have hit Cliff Lee before. But, if they do lose this game, I think the whole world expects CC Sabathia to start game 4 on short rest.

In fact, I feel good about this game tonight and I’m going to reverse myself – I say the Yankees take this one!

Yankees comeback against Rangers seals the deal

brett gardner alcs

the beginning of the end

If you read my ALCS picks, you’ll see I had the Yankees winning in 6 games, but I’m probably wrong, and Michael Kay is probably right – Yankees in 5 games.  But after last night’s late inning collapse by the Rangers, it’s almost difficult to expect them to win any games at all. 

I mean, what else do the Rangers need to go right for them to win a ball game?  CC Sabathia was terrible (again), CJ Wilson pitched a great game and they had a 4 run lead to start the eight inning.  Then it all came undone, starting with an infield single by Brett Gardner, during which he slide into first base.  I still have no idea why guys do this – again, to invoke Michael Kay, if sliding was faster, then Olympic sprinters would slide over the finish line, right?  I guess it did make him more difficult for C.J. Wilson to tag, and it turned out to be the start to a great rally for the Yankees.

Following Wilson was a parade of relief pitchers who just couldn’t get anybody out.  This isn’t all that shocking to me – although the Rangers have a zillion relievers that throw 95 MPH, none of them seem to be that great.  Darren Oliver, Darren O’Day, Clay Rapada and Derek Holland all combined to stink up the joint – not that they got clobbered, but the Rangers needed these guys to come in and restore order against the Yankees best hitters, and the blew it in spectacular fashion, with walks and singles for anybody who wanted one. Holland was able to stay on after he gave up a run and he did keep Robinson Cano from scoring, but that’s all the praise one can heep on him.

And speaking of Robinson Cano, I think he gets our ‘keep hope alive’ award for the lazer beam home run off Wilson in the 7th, which was the first home run Wilson has allowed to a left handed batter since June of 2008!  That’s some streak, and a fantastic way to end it.  Derek Jeter doubled Gardner in, then Swisher walked, Alex Rodriguez singled in a pair, then it was Cano time again for another RBI and Marcus Thames singled in the winning run.

But without Joba Chamberlain and especially Dustin Moseley giving the Yankees a chance after Sabathia’s bad start, this never would have happened.  The bone head award of the day goes to Ian Kinsler for getting picked off by Kerry Wood after he walked him on 4 pitches.  He didn’t even move as Wood fired the ball to Mark Teixeira, he didn’t even try to dive back to first, he just conceded to a run down.  Was Wood’s move that good?  It sure was fast, but Kinsler can’t allow himself to be put in that situation.  Suddenly, Wood had things going his way after a tough start.  The Rangers might have thought they had a chance against Mariano Rivera since they got to him in August, but honestly, that was Mo being crappy, not the Rangers being great.  Mo got it done, and there it is – an improbable Yankees win.  But that’s what great teams do – beat inferior teams.

Quick ALCS Picks

yankeesGame 1:  CC Sabathia vs CJ Wilson

Shock of shocks,  I like the Yankees in this one because I believe  the odds are in their favor:

  1. the Yankees are 2-0 on the road so far this post season
  2. the Rangers are 0-2 at home so far this post season
  3. CC Sabathia pitched poorly in his first outing and it’s unlikely he’ll pitch poorly again
  4. C.J. Wilson is good, but he’s not Cliff Lee

yankeesGame 2:  Phil Hughes vs Colby Lewis

Again, I like the Yankees in this one because I believe  the odds are still in their favor:

  1. the Yankees are 2-0 on the road so far this post season
  2. the Rangers are 0-2 at home so far this post season
  3. Phil Hughes pitched well in the ALDS against the Twins, and I don’t think the Rangers offense is that much better than the Twins
  4. Colby Lewis‘ first name is Colby.  Seriously?  I assume he spends a lot of time shopping at the Gap during the off season with Jacoby Ellsbery

rangersGame 3:  Andy Pettitte vs Cliff Lee

Ah, the plot thickens, as the kids like to say.  Given Cliff Lee‘s dominance against the Yankees this season (and against everyone else – ask Tampa Bay), it’s hard to expect the Yankees to suddenly give him a beating.  But Andy Pettitte could toss a gem… and still lose.  It’s a tough one.  I think the Rangers win this one.

rangersGame 4:  AJ Burnett vs the World

OK, maybe it’s not that bad, but I can’t expect the Yankees to play with any confidence behind A.J. Burnett, but AJ could surprise us and not get annihilated, but I’ll believe that when I see it.  The Rangers take this one, too.

Suddenly it’s tied at 2 games a each.  How’d that happen?

yankees

Game 5:  CC Sabathia vs CJ Wilson

CC pitches his humongous butt off – Yankees win.

colby lewisGame 6:  Phil Hughes vs Colby Lewis

Phil Hughes knocks Colby’s monocle off – the Yankees win.

Yep, Yankees in 6, folks. You heard it here… probably not first.  Also, if the Yankees are trailing in the series after the first 3 games, the entire world expects the Yankees to go to Sabathia on short rest – and I’m sure they’ll keep going that way until they win, which will screw them up in the World Series against the Phillies (yeah, the Phillies are winning the NLCS; seems pretty obvious when their opponent couldn’t a run to save their lives), but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.

Oh How Sweep It Is!

That’s a delicious pun, right?  Pretty sure that being the guy that uses ‘Oh How Sweep It Is!’ as his title goes hand and hand with using ‘delicious’ as an adjective…

But to the games…  Thursday night’s ALDS game 2 was relatively stress free for Andy Pettitte and the Yankees against the Twins.  Sure, Pettitte had that one inning that he had the bases loaded, but he got through it while only allowing one run.  I admit, I was pretty concerned with what he’d come back with after that inning, but he was good to go.  The only thing that kept that game from turning into a laugher was the Yankees inability to drive up the score.  Still, a win is a win, and in the playoffs, all that matters is you win the game without any of your best players getting hurt.

Now Saturday night’s game turned into a laugher.  I had the most unusual experience watching the game…  I was on vacation at Disney World, and our hotel TV does not seem to have any of the Turner stations… well, we have CNN, but no TNT, and most unfortunately, TBS.

Fortunately, the 21st Century provides other options, so we fired up ye olde laptop and went to MLB.com and purchased that playoff.tv package that lets you choose from eight different camera angles and watch up to four at once.  I should point out that I have a half dozen years experience as a media services professional before I start complaining that I could barely get this shiz to work.  I tried Internet Explorer, I tried Firefox and that didn’t seem to be an issue.  I wasn’t using wifi, so  even tried a different Ethernet cable to the same shizzy results.  Finally, I reduced the video quality to its lowest level and restarted the machine a few times before I finally got the desired effect – that is, video playback with minimal skipping.

Watching a game from one angle is totally impossible because different camera operators are supposed to cover different things, so a minimum of two angles is required.  This doesn’t seem to help the processing side of things.  In any case, it worked and we were able to watch the game and listen to the TBS broadcasters (unlike that product they sell with game day, you can’t choose different audio options, which is weak), and that wasn’t always so great – they were getting bored as the game went on.

Phil Hughes dominance over 7 innings made life pretty sweet for Yankees fans and seemed to irritated the broadcasters as the Yankees offense ran up the score and Hughes shut out the Twins.  Kerry Wood got into some trouble in the 8th and a run scored, but Boone Logan and David Robertson nailed the 8th down and efforts against Mariano Rivera in the 9th were futile.

Between Phil Hughes and the home run Marcus Thames hit, the game felt over quickly.  That’s all there was to it.  The Twins can’t handle the Yankees and the next round is looming.  Who will it be?  Who would you want it to be?  Tough questions, and maybe tougher answers.  It’s going to be hard for the Rays to come back against the Rangers, but we’ll have to wait and see.

In Praise of A-Rod

Alex Rodriguez is a truly amazing ball player.  You can say whatever you want about the steroids, but he’s great.  Even this year, when he’s battled injury, he’s still an amazing producer.  You don’t have to believe me – the numbers will make it clear.

Ask any Yankee fan who had the best year on the Yankees this year and they’ll say Robinson Cano nine times out of ten.  He did have an amazing year and did everything he was asked.   Before the season, people speculated that he couldn’t handle hitting 5th, and he did a great job.  When A-Rod was hurt, he hit clean up like he’d been doing it his whole life.  Here are his 2010 numbers  in 160 games:a-rod

  • .319 avg
  • 200 hits
  • 29 home runs
  • 109 RBI

Now here are A-Rod’s numbers in 137 games:

  • .270 avg
  • 141 hits
  • 30 home runs
  • 125 RBI

How amazing is that?  Cano was out there every day, playing in 23 more games in 2010 than  A-Rod, and they virtually tied in home runs and A-R0d beat him in RBI.  How amazing is that? He passed him in homers (just barely) and drove in more runners playing in fewer games.  I just can’t get over it.

I think a lot of the A-Rod hating Yankee fans went away after he played so well in the 2009 post season, and the drug thing will follow him around forever, but love him or hate him, you have to admit that A-Rod is great.  Even with the hip thing and whatever damage the PEDs may have done to his body, I’m glad he’s going to be with the Yankees for a long time to come.

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