Results tagged ‘ Brian McCann ’

Game 159: Captain Clutch.

Orioles Yankees BaseballI’ve called Derek Jeter “Captain Clutch” many a time, and it’s never been more appropriate than right now.  It was only fitting that Derek Jeter should score our first run of the night, then our last in the bottom of the 9th.  It was his last home game, the last time he’d ever wear the navy blue and white pinstripes in the Bronx, and in an almost scripted fashion, just like his 3,000th hit being a home run, he wins the game for us.  On the first pitch, no less.  When he announced his retirement before the season started, I reflected on the fact that I became a fan in 1994, before he joined the team.  In those 20 years, I’ve only known one Yankees shortstop.  It’ll be strange as hell to see someone else taking the field next year, no #2 hovering in the on-deck circle, but I suppose that’s what goes through the minds of baseball fans when their favorite players decides to hang up their cleats.  BTW, how extremely emotional and awesome was it for him to be greeted afterwards by Joe Torre, Jorge Posada, Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera, Bernie Williams, and Tino Martinez?  They were all key cogs in the dynasty era, and they were all there to usher the last one in.  I won’t lie, I teared up.  I also found it incredibly classy that the Orioles were applauding the whole time.  They’re going to the playoffs, so this loss didn’t affect them, but they still lost….yet they all stood at the top of the dugout, clapping.  Class acts, those boids.

I don’t even care that David Robertson blew the save.  DO NOT CARE.  It’s probably the only time in the history of my baseball fandom that I’ve ever been happy to see such a scene practically dropped into a hitter’s lap.  Good on you, D-Rob, that was marvelous.  If I was a more cynical sort, I’d say you did that on purpose.  He also lucked into the win as well, so there you have it.  Hiroki Kuroda pitched a masterful eight innings, giving up only 2 ER on 3 H, walking none, and striking out nine.  Everyone deserves a steak dinner, yes, even David Robertson.  He allowed Mystique and Aura to take the stage one final time.

The game was all about Derek from the start, so we’ll lead off with him – he went 2-5 with 3 RBI.  Brian McCann, interestingly enough, got 2 RBI without a hit.  That can be done, you know.  Jose Pirela went 2-4.  There’s your offense.  It wasn’t much, but who the hell cares?

On a personal note, I’m going to miss Derek Jeter.  He’s a great guy, a class act all around, he was never embroiled in scandals and bad press.  He’s the kind of player professional sports need more of.  Enjoy retirement, Jetes.  You’ve earned it.

Game 157: Let down.

Well, we made a game of it, and I suppose in the end, that’s what counts.  We had been down 5-1 early, but managed to storm back in the later innings, but we fell a bit short.  Our elimination number from any and all postseason activity is now 1, which, well…..I can’t say I’m all that upset about, really.  I knew it would take an act of nature or something else wildly unlikely for us to make the playoffs this year, so I’ve always had that in the back of my mind.  It makes it hurt less when it becomes an eventuality.

What can I say about Brandon McCarthy?  At least he didn’t walk anybody?  He struck out eight?  If only the front half of his line (11 H, 5 ER) looked as good as the back half.  He also pitched into the 6th, so that’s something else too.  Rich Hill, Esmil Rogers, Dellin Betances, and David Robertson all pitched in relief, giving up a further six hits, but no runs, no walks, and they struck out three.  If only they’d pitched the entire game.

Our offense went back to being woeful, with yet again, barring a couple of exceptions, all of the offense coming from the first third of the batting order.  Brett Gardner went 1-4, Derek Jeter went 1-5, and Brian McCann went 2-4 with 2 RBI.  Both Chris Young and Stephen Drew collected RBIs, but they had no hits.  We were 0-8 with RISP and had 7 LOB.  You can’t win games that way.  I don’t even think the 1927 Yankees could win a game like that. There’s two more games to this series, one this afternoon, and then Derek Jeter’s last home game tomorrow night, and if we’re going to win either of them….please win tomorrow night’s game.

Game 155: Welcome back, Tanaka.

If you sang that to the tune of “Welcome Back, Kotter,” give yourself a hand, because that’s what I wanted you to do.  Masahiro Tanaka made his first start in what felt like ages, after sitting out with an injury.  We could have used him a few months ago, but it’s better to have him healthy now so he’ll be 100% for next season, instead of pitching through it anyway and being useless by February.  As you know, I want the team to finish above .500, so every little bit helps.

For coming off an injury that had him out for a while, he did a fantastic job — 5.1 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K.  He’s really going to be an incredibly solid part of the rotation next season, if we can just keep him encased in bubble wrap the whole time.  Warren, Betances, and Robertson pitched in relief, with D-Rob picking up his 38th save of the season.  They did a great job, and since I seldom have opportunity to praise them, I’m doing it now.

Well, one thing I can say for the offense is at least we didn’t leave 11 men on base or go 3-13 with RISP.  We went 2-8, but that’s still better.  Brett Gardener went 2-5 with 1 RBI, Brian McCann went 2-3 with 3 RBI, Derek Jeter went 2-4 with an RBI, and Ichiro went 2-4.  Unfortunately, with the exception of Ichiro, all of our offense was concentrated in the first three batters.  Gardy leads off, Jeter hits second, and McCann hits third.  No one after him, except for Ichiro, got a hit.  That’s pretty damn depressing.  I’m glad we won and all, don’t get me wrong, but that’s a whole lot of nothing from literally everyone else.  We start a series against Baltimore next, and the last game of the series on Thursday will be Derek Jeter’s final home game — we close the season against the Red Sox in Boston, and won’t that be a delight.  So, four more home games for Mr. November.  Where does the time go?

Game 154: Well, that was nice while it lasted.

The Yankees could only manage three in a row, I’m afraid.  Any more and they’d all be liable to blow up or something.  We’re only four games above .500, so my challenge for them is to finish better than 82-82.  Even if it’s 83-81, I don’t care.  Just finish above .500.

Chris Capuano didn’t have the best night, lasting only 5.2 innings, giving up 4 ER on 5 H, walking four while striking out only two.  At least he didn’t give up any HRs, yeah?  Our bullpen was okay, they didn’t completely sh!t the bed, but they did give up a further 2 ER and 5 H, so it wasn’t a sparkling performance by any means.  There were other reasons we eventually ended up losing that had nothing to do with the pitching, as poor as it was.

The offense has been stagnant all season, so that in and of itself wasn’t shocking.  I expect us to barely do anything at the plate anymore.  What annoyed me is we managed 11 hits, a feat for this team, and yet we scored only three runs.  We were 3-13 with RISP and left 11 men on base.  That’s not going to win you ballgames, whether you’re a good team, a poor team, or a middling team.  When are we ever going to clock that many hits during one game?  You need to capitalize on that.  Brett Gardner went 2-5, Derek Jeter went 2-5 with an RBI, Brian McCann went 1-4 with an RBI, Ichiro went 2-4, and Francisco Cervelli went 1-4 with an RBI.  Let’s win today if we can.  That’s IF we can.

Game 153: Wow, three in a row!

I’d like to think the Yankees secretly read my blog, thus understanding just how pissed off I’ve been at them all season, and now they’re trying to butter me up by playing smart baseball and winning games.  I’m on to you, fellas.  *taps side of nose*  It’s just too bad they’re figuring this out in the last two weeks of September, instead of several months ago.  Imagine how different our playoff outlook would be then?

Hiroki Kuroda pitched tonight, kicking all kinds of Blue Jay ass, lasting 6.2 innings, giving up 2 ER on 7 H, with 0 BB and 7 K.  Outman, Rogers, and Warren pitched the remaining 2.1 innings, giving up a combined 2 H and 0 ER, walking one and striking out three.  Warren picked up his 3rd save of the season, as well.

As far as offense goes, it wasn’t great, but it got the job done, which in the end is all that’s really important.  Jacoby Ellsbury went 2-3 with 3 RBI before leaving the game with a strained hamstring, but since it’s September 19, it’s not as crushing a blow as it otherwise would have been.  I still hope he’s alright and won’t have any issues come Spring Training next year.  Derek Jeter went 2-4, and Brian McCann went 1-4 with an RBI.  On a personal note, I can’t honestly say I know why Carlos Beltran played tonight, given the fact his wife lost their unborn child.  If ever there was a time when it was perfectly acceptable to sit the rest of the season, it would be for that.  My good thoughts and positive vibes are with them both right now.

Game 148: We should have been swept.

Yes, you read that right.  We had no business winning the one game that we did, so really, we ought to have been swept.  Doesn’t feel good saying it, but the truth hurts sometimes.  We were outplayed in Saturday’s game, but managed to squeak by for who knows what lucky reason, but that kind of luck doesn’t tend to stay with us, so here we are.

It’s a shame that when our starters turn in really excellent performances, the offense sh!ts the bed and renders them moot.  Kuroda threw 7.0 innings, gave up 1 ER on 6 H, walked none and struck out five.  Fast-forward to the bottom of the 9th, and David Robertson, usually a very reliable pitcher, promptly blows the save, then gets the loss, by giving up 2 ER on 3 H.  Thanks for nothing, D-Rob.

That said, it’s not entirely the pitching’s fault that we lost.  The offense did nothing, as they’re wont to do anymore.  Martin Prado and Brian McCann accounted for our runs, each going 2-4 with an RBI.  As we only had six hits to speak of, that’s 2/3 of the offense right there.  Two people.  You can’t win games with that, no matter how well your pitching might be.  Depressing.  Just absolutely utterly depressing.

Game 147: We couldn’t do that yesterday?

Hey, we won.  I’d get excited, but it wasn’t much of a victory.  Not that I begrudge the Orioles anything, they’re clearly a great team.  They’ve more than earned the success they’ve achieved this season.  I may hate other teams, but I can admit when they’re better than us, and a whole lot of folk are better than us this year.  At least winning this afternoon meant we can’t get swept, which I’m accepting as the victory we can take away from this series.

Shane Greene was our starter today, lasting 5.1 innings, giving up 2 ER on 7 H, while walking one and striking out nine.  I would have liked to have seen him last the entire 6th inning, if only for it to register as a “quality start,” but he got the win, so it all came out the same in the end.  David Robertson picked up his 36th save on the season as well.

Chris Young stole home today, proving that not all things that come from the Mets are bad.  He’s been downright fantastic for us in the short time we’ve had him thus far.  Richardson and McCann clocked our other two runs.  We only had four hits as it was, so it’s not like we did a whole lot today.  Going 1-5 with RISP and leaving six men on base certainly didn’t help, Baltimore’s outstanding pitching aside.  Let’s hope we can at least force a tie tomorrow evening with a win.

Game 143: Come from behind victory.

I was going to leave the title as is, but minus the word “victory,” then thought about how absolutely filthy it sounded, regardless of the fact I wasn’t talking what it might look like I was talking about, and thus opted to leave the word in.  If any of you reading this managed to follow that sentence, you get a gold star.  So do the Yankees, who managed to shock and awe me by falling behind early, but clawing ahead to take the lead and ultimately win the game.  We haven’t done that all that often this year.

Chris Capuano didn’t exactly have the best game.  That’s putting it mildly of course, he lasted only 0.1 innings, or basically one out.  He lasted one out.  He gave up 4 ER on 4 H, walking two, which is a great line if you pitch 7 or 8 innings…..not when you’ve only recorded one out.  Thus, our bullpen had a yeoman’s task ahead of them, trying to hold the Rays to four runs so we could maybe possibly I don’t know find a way to win the game.  They managed to do it, and all of them deserve a steak dinner and a cold beer for it, so Jeter should get on that.  I picked him because he’s arguably the richest guy on the team, so he could afford to drop a few quid for it.

Unfortunately, Derek had no hits last night, which is another reason why he should be the one to pay for the steak dinners and beer.  Those that did have a good night at the plate include Brian McCann (2-3, 3 RBI), Chris Young (3-4, 2 RBI), Chase Headley (2-3, RBI), Mark Teixeira (1-3, RBI), and Ichiro (1-4, RBI).  As you can see, varied production from the top and the bottom of the lineup, which is something I’m always bitching about seeing from them game after game after game.  I hope we try and build upon this and win tonight.

Game 137: WE WON!! WE WON!! WE WON!!

You’ll have to forgive the possibly over-jubilant response to last night’s victory; after Tuesday’s game, I held out no hope that we’d beat the Red Sox, much less by more than one run.  I hate playing the Red Sox, not just because they’re the Red Sox, but every game gives me a quasi-ulcer.  Not to mention, not a single Yankees/Red Sox game can be played in under three hours.  If they’re on ESPN on a Sunday night, no chance it will be less than 3.5 hours.  It’s just one of many reasons watching these games (or in my case, listening to them) is incredibly nerve wracking.

Hiroki Kuroda did what he’s mostly been doing all season, and that’s pitching his ass off.  He’s one of the few pitchers we have that are very reliable and can be counted on to give you a quality start each time out, even if we don’t end up winning the game.  He pitched 7.0 innings, giving up only 1 ER on 4 H, while walking none and striking out eight.  Dellin Betances and David Robertson pitched the last two innings, giving up 0 ER on 2 H while striking out four.  If only we got pitching performances like this all the time, against good teams as well as the crappy ones, we’d be in a lot better shape.

Our offense was also surprisingly on target tonight, tagging Boston pitching for 5 runs on 11 H.  Brian McCann is our Offensive Star of the Game, as he went 4-4 with 3 RBI.  Runner-up is Brett Gardner, who went 2-4 with an RBI, and 2nd runner-up goes to Jacoby Ellsbury, who went 1-3 with an RBI.  Everyone in the starting lineup except Beltran and Drew got at least a hit, so it was nice to see the offense spread around a bit, at least in terms of that.  Tonight’s game better go in much the same vein.

Game 136: I totally expected that.

The Red Sox are arguably one of the worst teams in the American League, if not all of baseball, so naturally we lose to them.  I called that to myself before the game even started.  I really wanted to be wrong, and hoped that when the Red Sox jumped to an early lead we’d snap out of it, but alas, ’twas not to be.  As a side note, I read that the Yankees will be wearing a patch in honor of Derek Jeter, and what I’d like to know is why.  He’s not dying, he’s retiring.  I’m not taking anything away from his legacy, he will rightfully go down as one of the greatest Yankees of all time, not to mention one of the greatest shortstops in all of baseball, but the somewhat overwrought reaction he’s getting whenever the Yankees play in someone else’s ballpark is just a bit….maybe not ridiculous, but a little over the top.  I love him, and I’ll miss him, but he’s not moving to a colony on Mars, people.

Now, on to the pitching last night, which was in a word, abysmal.  Shane Greene started but didn’t stay long, lasting only 2.2 innings, giving up 6 ER on 6 H.  He walked three, struck out three, and gave up two HRs.  Lovely line.  It’s not like our relievers did that much better, giving up a combined 3 ER on 6 H, with 3 BB and 9 K.  The only good part of any of that is the 9 K part, and that was all of relievers put together.  It was a sh!t-show from start to finish.  There’s really nothing else that can be said about it, it was that bad.

To make matters worse, it wasn’t like the offense was any better.  Brian McCann went 2-4 with an RBI, Martin Prado went 2-3 with an RBI, and Derek Jeter went 1-4 with an RBI.  That was pretty much the extent of our vaunted offense.  You can’t win games if you don’t score runs, though it helps if your pitching doesn’t give up nine of them, but if we had any urgency in us whatsoever, we could have pulled this one out.  Hopefully tonight’s game goes much better than this one did.  Hopefully.

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