A well deserved day off while the Yankees head to Seattle…
Speaking of Seattle, I am always appreciative of the fact that Tom Paciorek no longer plays baseball. For my generation, he was the original Yankee killer. I know that there were many before him and many since, however, he was the first player that I personally witnessed as a single-handed destruction force against anything pinstripe-related.
It was an interesting week. Monday saw the Yankees defeat their nemesis, the Los Angeles Angels, in a makeup of the May 3rd rainout.
Tuesday was a mess. A brawl left Jorge Posada and Shelley Duncan with three-game suspensions. Posada, who had taken exception to an earlier pitch, threw an elbow at Jays pitcher Jesse Carlson, while scoring on a double by Brett Gardner. There were several bench clearing moments, and the latter occurred following the elbow by Posada. Hitting coach Kevin Long and pitcher Edwar Ramirez were also fined for their involvement in the fracas. Any way you slice it, it was an ugly representation of baseball. The Yankees dropped the game, 10-4.
Wednesday, the teams were more amenable to each other. The Yankees fell behind the Jays early and trailed 4-2 in the 7th inning. I had started to become concerned that the Yanks were on the verge of their second consecutive loss, but Hideki Matsui allayed my fears with a two-run homer in the 8th to tie the game. At that point, I had confidence that the team would mount yet another walk-off win. I was not denied, although I was a bit surprised by the source. I will first start by saying I love watching Brett Gardner work the base paths. Following a lead-off single in the 9th inning, he stole second. Derek Jeter grounded out to short, but it advanced Gardner, the winning run, to 3rd. That brought catcher Francisco Cervelli to the plate. His single to left scored Gardner, and the Yankees had a new recipient for the pie of the day…
Ron Antonelli/New York Daily News
This morning, I was looking at the AL East standings, and was surprised to see that the Red Sox were only 5 games behind the Yanks in the loss column. Boston has been playing very well lately as evidenced by the 7-game winning streak. Julia is quick to note that this team reminds her of the 2004 and 2007 World Championship clubs, and the way they’ve been playing, I do not necessarily disagree. Nevertheless, I have confidence in my guys and their ‘no-quit’ determination. Given that the Texas Rangers have performed the baseball equivalent of hara-kiri, there is no much mystery left regarding whether the Yankees and Red Sox will make the play-offs. The only question is who will take the AL East crown, and right now, the Yankees have the advantage. The Yankees continue their quest for the best record in the AL, but they cannot lose sight of the team in their rearview mirror. I learned long ago not to underestimate the Red Sox.
The Red Sox did see the end of their 7-game winning streak tonight, as they were clipped by the Angels, 4-3. The Yankees magic number has been reduced to 10, although the Angels were able to pick up a ½ game on the Yanks.
The Scranton/Wilkes Barre Yankees were unable to defend their International League crown. They were swept in the finals tonight by the Durham Bulls with a 3-2 loss in the third and final game. The Yankees did pick up championships in two other minor leagues. Class A Tampa won the Florida State League, while the Staten Island Yankees won the New York/Penn League. I’m thinking “three’s company”, so let’s go big league Yanks!
In a somewhat shocking announcement, Peter Abraham of the Yankees LoHud Yankees Blog announced that he will be moving to Boston to work for the Boston Globe. His blog has long been one of my personal favorites, and I will miss his Yankees insight. I am sure that he’ll provide Red Sox fans with the same robust and reliable information that we Yankee fans have been accustomed to, not to mention the quick wit. Pete Abe made a comment that some will call him a traitor, but I will not. He is a class act, and his decision was made for family reasons, which is a very admirable trait. I would like to thank him for his work over the years, and I wish him the very best in Boston. Of course, he’ll miss out on writing about the 2009 World Series Champions…
My fantasy football team faces a huge dilemma this weekend. My starting QB is Tom Brady, while my defense is the Jets D. So, I have one player working against another since the Patriots face the Jets this weekend. Who do I pull for? Yikes! As an 0-1 team (thanks to LaDainian Tomlinson’s ankle), I have to hope that best case scenario plays out.
I will close with a photo of my pride and joy. She has been the master of self portraits since she was very small, and has developed a great sense of humor (despite her dad)…