Tagged: New York Yankees

9/27 – Hold Your Breath

The American League Wild Card race is getting real interesting right now. With a Baltimore win over the Red Sox and the Rays downing the Yankees, the Rays and Sox are now tied atop the AL Wild Card standings. It looked for a while like the Red Sox may be able to hold their ground and continue this dominant season but the Rays have really come on strong and can smell the playoffs.

Josh Beckett pitched well against the Orioles last night but the Baltimore offense has decided to play the role of Major Spoiler and give the Rays some help. Chris Davis and Robert Andino were the unlikely heroes in Baltimore’s 6-3 victory over Boston, Davis driving in a pair and Andino scattering three RBI throughout the game.¬†Tonight the Red Sox will send veteran southpaw Erik Bedard (1-2, 3.63 ERA) to the mound against rookie and fellow left-hander Zach Britton (11-10, 4.44 ERA).

The Rays needed a big inning to bust through against the Yankees and that’s what they got in the bottom of the third. With the score at 2-0 Yankees, a two-run double off the bat of B.J. Upton and a Johnny Damon RBI single put the Rays up for good. Having James Shields on the mound gave the Rays that extra boost of confidence to overcome the Yankees as Shields pitched eight and two thirds innings of six-hit, two-run baseball. Kyle Farnsworth recorded his twenty-fourth save of the year. Tonight young righty Jeremy Hellickson (13-10, 2.90 ERA) will go against journeyman righty Bartolo Colon (8-10, 4.02 ERA) in a chance for the Rays to hop into first place in the Wild Card.

It’s Veteran vs. Youngster for the Sox and Youngster vs. Veteran for the Rays in what could be the biggest game of the season for both of these two playoff-bound teams.

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4/28 – Game 4 @ Yankees

Alright, well! That happened.

Good game, guys. If only the series were a three-gamer like I thought it was. We could’ve been spared this humiliation. 
Everyone out of the bullpen gets one point for effort. Wasn’t really much we could do against the Yankees tonight. 

Bullpen Points Leaderboard
1. Sergio Santos – 15 points
2. Jesse Crain – 10 points
2. Will Ohman – 10 points
4. Chris Sale – 8 points
5. Tony Pena – 6 points
6. Jeff Gray – 5 points

7. Matt Thornton – 3 points

Next game is tomorrow night against the Baltimore Orioles. Jake Arrieta (2-1, 4.94) will go against John Danks (0-3, 3.27). I’m hoping we don’t give up 12 runs to Baltimore. 

Go Somebody. 

4/27 – Game 3 @ Yankees

Curse Robinson Cano and his talent.

One piece of good hitting from the New York second baseman was all they needed. Little Debbie Cakes pitched eight fantastic innings of one-run ball, striking out six batters… I just don’t understand it. The guy was 3-6 with a 4.19 ERA when he pitched for us! What gives!? HE’S TWO HUNDRED SEVENTY POUNDS!! 
Wow, sorry about that.

Adam Dunn had a nice run-batted-in for us tonight, so that was cool. He’s being rather productive lately and I’m a big fan of production. I thought all of those foul balls that Pierzynski was fighting off in the ninth inning was going to lead to some sort of production but then I saw Mark Teahen in the on-deck circle and I knew I was going to be disappointed even if he came to bat. I really don’t like Mark Teahen. 
Mariano Rivera has 567 career saves for a reason: he’s the best in the game. You’re not gonna do much off of the guy and when you do you better ask for the baseball cuz it doesn’t happen very often. 
Great inning by Jesse Crain outta the bullpen – he’ll get two points. I’m going to start boldifying the guys who appeared in the game even though I’ll mention them before I give out the points. It’ll just be aesthetically pleasing and a quicker way to see who pitched. 

Bullpen Points Leaderboard
1. Sergio Santos – 15 points
2. Jesse Crain – 10 points
3. Will Ohman – 9 points
4. Chris Sale – 8 points
5. Tony Pena – 5 points
6. Jeff Gray – 4 points

7. Matt Thornton – 3 points 
Are you kidding me? Will Ohman was in there twice and nobody told me? Come on, you guys =P (Oh crud, that’s an emote in a post… I think I can do that. Act casual.)
Because, yet again, I didn’t realize this was a four-game series (does it seem like there are a lot of those so early in the year?), it turns out we are facing Cap’n Crunch tomorrow at 6:05. But we have Edwin Jackson going for us… so… that may be a good thing, I dunno. We’ll see.
Go Sox!!

4/26 – Game 2 @ Yankees

Man! Dude! That’s two in a row! I feel like an absolute loser for getting this worked up over a little two game winning streak (even the Pirates get one of those every now and then – imagine how they must feel) but it’s been too long since we’ve won two in a row. 

The offense is still struggling a bit and you can really see it on the faces of most of the players. Everyone looks really lost, like they’re over-analyzing what could be the simplest problem in their swing. Except for the occasional Gift Pitch we just can’t get any good wood on the ball and that’s why we aren’t scoring any runs. Konerko skied that homer into the left field seats, it was a real thing of beauty and exactly what we needed. 
How about Brent Lillibridge with some fantastic defense in right field? That guy is coming in for Quentin in the later innings (after Quentin’s “last” at bat of the game or to pinch run for someone and replace CQ in the outfield) and I’m really digging how talented he is. He’s our own little Sam Fuld. The plays he’s making are really good plays so I feel like I should give him a grown-up nickname like… The Bridge… or something. What do you think? We need a nickname for this guy. 
As good as his two plays were, though, I really feel that Hawk overreacted a little bit on the first one. It didn’t really deserve a “LOOK AT THE PLAY BY *PLAYER’S NAME* MERCY!” as much as Dewayne Wise deserved his, but I guess, in the moment, Hawk couldn’t come up with anything better to say. Understandable. They were still HUGE plays that undoubtedly saved the game for us. Well done, sir. 
The Pitcher of Mystery had a fantastic outing, going eight innings, striking out ten and allowing two runs on four hits. Then Thornton and Santos out of the bullpen – they’ll both get two points. (Thornton got a hold and Santos logged his second consecutive save.)

Bullpen Points Leaderboard
1. Sergio Santos – 15 points
2. Will Ohman – 9 points
3. Jesse Crain – 8 points
3. Chris Sale – 8 points
4. Will Ohman – 7 points
5. Tony Pena – 5 points
6. Jeff Gray – 4 points

7. Matt Thornton – 3 points 
15 points for Santos. Wherever you are, bro, high five to you. 
Next game will be tomorrow at 6:05 again, Mark Buehrle (1-2, 5.40) vs. Little Debbie Cakes Colon (1-1, 3.50). Thank goodness we didn’t have to face Cap’n Crunch Sabathia during this trip. 
Go Sox!!

4/25 – Game 1 @ Yankees

So I guess it’s okay to be a White Sox fan again? Phil Humber took a no-hitter into the seventh inning against the New York Yankees… that’s gotta be a good thing. And our offense played some good “Get ’em on, get ’em over, get ’em in” baseball… so that’s gotta be a good thing. And that bullpen! Best outing of the year from those guys… so that’s gotta be a good thing. 

Maybe everything is okay? 
Seriously, great job tonight by Phil Humber. This kid has come out and proven that he can be a big league pitcher and frankly we needed that tonight. The Yankees are the epitome of a professional ballclub and Humber mowed through them like something that mows through professional ballclubs.
Alex Rios finally busted his 0-for-21 slump with a single in… whatever inning that was. It was awesome, during the first inning they showed Adam Dunn kneeling on the top step of the dugout and he had a huge smile on his face. My sister looked at him and said “He seems awfully chipper for a big fat loser.” Then he drives in the Sox’s first run since the seventh inning of that Friday night game back in 1997. (It felt like that, anyway.) 
As I mentioned before, huge appearances out of the bullpen by Chris Sale and Sergio Santos. They’ll both get three points for their clutch performances. 

Bullpen Points Leaderboard
1. Sergio Santos – 13 points
2. Will Ohman – 9 points
3. Jesse Crain – 8 points
3. Chris Sale – 8 points
4. Will Ohman – 7 points
5. Tony Pena – 5 points
6. Jeff Gray – 4 points
7. Matt Thornton – 1 point

Santos is showing no signs of coming down from the top of this leaderboard. I’m extremely proud of this guy so far this year and I’m hoping beyond hope that he doesn’t let me down like Thornton has. 
Our next game will be tomorrow against these same New York Yankees. Gavin Floyd (2-1, 4.00) will go against Ivan Nova (1-2, 7.63) at 6:05 Central time. 
Hopefully tonight’s win was a sign of good things to come. Stellar starting pitching, solid fundamentals on the basepaths and on defense, and two much-needed (especially in the situation) shutdown innings out of the bullpen. 
Don’t stop now, boys!
Go Sox!!

Christmas Eve

I’m completely serious when I say this but to me this feels more like Christmas Eve than Christmas Eve does. I got my Sports Illustrated preview issue in the mail today and I knew we were close. When the Sporting News preview issue is released to stores I know that Spring Training is on it’s way, but when SI comes in the mail… it’s soon.

I’m sitting here listening to the Dodgers-Mariners game on Gameday Audio (my birthday present three years running) and I’m counting down the minutes until March 31 (115 at the moment). 
Sports Illustrated has the White Sox coming in third place behind the Tigers and the Twins. While I think the Tigers made some good improvements, I highly doubt they’ll finish higher than the Sox. I’ll be watching the Tigers-Yankees game tomorrow afternoon to do some scouting before the Sox take on the Indians on Friday. 
So Merry Christmas Eve to you! I’ll most definitely post again tomorrow, but I’m so excited right now that I had to write something, you know?