This has been a long road trip…
Today was the start of a two-game series in Toronto against the Blue Jays. On paper, it looked like the struggles from Chicago would continue north of the border. Roy Halladay was the scheduled starter for the first game, and the Yankees counter with Sergio Mitre on Wednesday night. So, it looked to be advantage Jays in both games. Fortunately, Andy Pettitte continued to pitch very effectively as the Yankees downed the Jays 5-3 in the first game. Halladay went the distance, but he gave up 10 hits and 5 runs (4 earned) as he absorbed just his 5th loss of the season (11-5). No offense to Andy, but I didn’t expect him to go toe-to-toe to Doc. Taking the ‘glass is half empty’ approach, I would have expected Andy to tire in the later innings. He did, however, he only gave up 4 hits and 1 run in 6 2/3 innings. He had 6 strikeouts, and 4 walks as he picked up his 9th win of the season (9-6).
Jim Rogash/Getty Images
The A-Rod homerless streak continued, but the Yankees hit three home runs in the last two innings against Halladay (Johnny Damon and Mark Teixeira in the 8th inning, and Hideki Matsui in the 9th). Mariano Rivera, despite giving up a double that scored two runs in the 8th, earned his 31st save. According to Peter Abraham of the LoHud Yankees Blog, it was Rivera’s 100th save in 103 chances. I continue to be amazed every time Rivera touches the ball. I used to wonder what it would have been like to see Lou Gehrig, Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle play, but now I realize that the fans of the 30’s and 40’s probably would have loved to have seen Rivera (and Derek Jeter) play.
Chris Young, The Canadian Press/AP
Tomorrow will tough with Mitre on the mound, but for a night, the Yanks can enjoy what has been a tough road trip. Fortunately, the opposing guy is named Rumpelstiltskin or something like that so hopefully the Yanks have a chance! J
They are currently 4-4, and have a chance to emerge with a winning record if they can defeat the Jays for a second time.
Steve Russell/Toronto Star
Then, the road leads back to the Bronx as the Yankees begin a four game set against the Boston Red Sox on Thursday. Okay, I realize that the Yankees are 0-8 against Boston this season, but it is time for a reversal of fortune. Once again, I have accepted a wager from Julia of Julia’s Rants. She doesn’t realize that I am a sandbagger. The Yankees will be back with a vengeance, and I feel good about the team’s prospects in the upcoming series. For one, Sergio Mitre won’t be pitching! LOL!
Here is the terms of the latest wager. The loser must:
1. Attach a Red Sox (Scott) or a Yankees (Julia) flag to his/her car, and take photos of the car in at least three prominent locations near our respective homes. They should be easily recognizable by anyone (to ensure that they are locations which handle high traffic for the applicable flag viewing).
2. Write a Top 11 List with eleven positive statements about the winning team. This was Jimmy‘s suggestion, which I admit was a very good one.
3. I will take it one more. If the Yankees get swept, I will wear a Red Sox t-shirt and a pink Boston cap with the car photos. The t-shirt would be for the player who has the biggest series against the Yankees (to be determined by Julia). But of course, I am not going to lose so this really isn’t an option.
Since it is a four game set, there is the possibility that the team will split. Therefore, we have set two tie-breakers. The first tie-breaker is the most total runs scored. The second tie-breaker is the team with the most home runs for the series.
May the best Yankees fan win! J
Actually, it should be Yankees Universe, but who’s counting…
Okay, perhaps I wasn’t really ready to see the original Yankee Stadium fall. I was a bit startled when I saw some photos today. During my last trip to New York, I walked around the old stadium for old times sake. It didn’t quite feel the same since it was closed, however, it was the place where my idol Lou Gehrig once played and it was magical to think that the field once saw the likes of Babe Ruth, Gehrig, Miller Huggins, Joe DiMaggio, Casey Stengel, Allie Reynolds, Urban Shocker (I have always loved that name!), Thurman Munson, Billy Martin, Roger Maris and many others. Those footsteps can never be re-traced in the new Stadium.
Courtesy George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress)
Farewell to an old friend…
In other baseball news, the Cleveland Indians released former Yankees pitcher Jose Veras. I am not surprised but hopefully he’ll get another chance to catch on with another big league club.
The Red Sox lost to the Tampa Bay Rays tonight, 4-2 in 13 innings. Ah, I’m so sad. Um, not really! J Make that lead in the AL East 1 ½ games! Life is good. Game on, Julia!