Tagged: Johnny Damon

Interleague play isn’t fun

The Yankees must be getting tired of interleague play this season. They lost to the Marlins, 2-1, dropping their interleague W-L record to 5-6.

Facing his former teammates, A.J. Burnett lasted 6 and 1/2 innings, giving up just 2 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits with 3 walks and 8 strikeouts. Unfortunately, Josh Johnson outpitched Burnett, going 7 innings and giving up 1 run on 3 hits with 2 walks and 5 strikeouts. Overall, the Yankees offense was anemic, and the defense wasn’t exactly stellar either. Angel Berroa and Johnny Damon had errors, but neither error led to Marlins runs.

Once again, Alex Rodriguez was not in the starting lineup. He did, however, enter the game in the 8th inning as a pinch hitter, drawing a walk. It was his first regular season at bat against the Marlins in his hometown. The crowd cheered through his entire at bat.

Of course, part of the reason for all those cheers may have been because of the large contingent of Yankee fans who once again filled the seats at Land Shark Stadium. (Is that not one of the worst names for a ballpark in the major leagues?!) The Yankees fans usual chants were answered by Marlins fans with the cow bells that were handed out at the gates. Attending this game probably required several Advil…particularly for Yankees fans, considering the final score.

headache.jpg
Current AL East Standings:

                    W       L       Pct      GB
Boston Red Sox      41      27     .603      —
New York Yankees    38      30     .559      3.0
Toronto Blue Jays   37      33     .529      5.0
Tampa Bay Rays      36      34     .514      6.0
Baltimore Orioles   31      37     .456      10.0

Nationals 3, Yankees 2

Umm…WHAT??

OMG_shocked.jpgNationals starter John Lannan pitched just over 8 strong innings, giving up 2 runs on 4 hits, and despite giving up 2 home runs, Lannan — a Long Island native who was a Yankees fan as a youngster — got the win as the Nationals defeated the Yankees, 3-2. Adam Dunn hit his 18th home run of the season, former Yankee Nick Johnson got his 2nd triple of the season and had 2 RBI, and former Yankees prospect Cristian Guzman was 3-5.

Yankees starter Chien-Ming Wang had his best start of the season, surrendering just 3 runs on 6 hits over 5 innings. Johnny Damon was 2-4 with a home run, and Robinson Cano hit a home run. The Yankees pulled within one run in the bottom of the 9th, but it wasn’t enough to pull out a win.

(This is where my split personality with regard to baseball kicks in……)

The Yankees lost to the Nationals?! Are you kidding me?? The freakin’ Natinals?!?! Those guys suck so bad, they can’t even spell the name of their team! Who the hell is John Lannan, and why couldn’t the Yankees get more than 4 hits off of him? They got 9 hits and scored 9 runs off of Johan Santana but could only manage to score 2 runs off Lannan. Once again, the Yankees managed to make a nobody pitcher look much better than he really is. And Cano was the hero last night, but he was a different story tonight, grounding into a double play to end the game. It’s humilating to lose to a 17-46 team…the Yankees should have blown these guys out. Worst of all, the Yankees lost ground to the Red Sox, who defeated the Marlins tonight.

OMG OMG OMG!!! The Nats beat the Yankees?! Are you kidding me?? I’m definitely a Lanna-fan, and I knew Lannan would pitch well…I just didn’t think he’d pitch as well as he did tonight. He had took a no-hitter into the 5th inning! How exciting must this game have been for him, with his family there at the Stadium to watch him pitch. Cristian Guzman had a great game, and I thought Nick Johnson was going to need oxygen after his triple. Thank goodness I suck at prediciting the outcomes of games. LOL

Two down, one to go…….

yanksnatsbigapple.gif

Happy ending to the Subway Series

The Yankees took 2 out of 3 games from the Mets in the 2009 interleague Subway Series. Andy Pettitte gave up 12 hits and got the loss as the Mets won Saturday’s contest, 6-2.

Also on Saturday, Yankees’ reliever Brian Bruney had a hissy fit against Francisco Rodriguez, publicly expressing his dislike of the Mets’ closer. Rodriguez responded with his own comments; both players pretty much sounded like

cryinggirl.jpg

However, in game 3 of the series, the Yankees beat the living snot out of Johan Santana, 15-0. The Yankees got 9 runs on 9 hits and chased Santana from the game after just 3 innings. A.J. Burnett, David Robertson, and Phil Hughes combined to shut the Mets down and out, allowing just 6 hits; the Mets left 23 men on base. The Yankees scored 9 of their 15 runs in a very busy 4th inning, which included home runs from Hideki Matsui and Robinson Cano, and doubles from Johnny Damon (now decaffinated) and Melky Cabrera.

During batting practice before this game, Mets closer Francisco Rodriguez yelled something at Brian Bruney in left field, continuing the hissy fit of the day before. The two had to be separated by teammates. Just more of

cryinggirl.jpgSheesh. Kids these days!

0-8

0-8 is the Yankees record vs. the Red Sox this season. 0-8 is also the Nationals record in extra inning games this season.

I am not happy about this state of affairs.

Yankees:

I can’t help but wonder how long Chien-Ming Wang will remain with the Yankees after his latest ineffective performance in a Yankees uniform in Wednesday’s 6-5 loss to the Red Sox. Throwing 69 pitches in less than 3 innings, Wang gave up 3 runs (including a home run) on 8 hits. Wang wasn’t the only reason that the Yankees lost, of course — the fact that the Yankees left 19 men on base also had a little something to do with it. But Wang’s performance was certainly disheartening, to say the least. I don’t know if it’s a mental issue, or if his foot is still bothering him. Whatever the issue is, it doesn’t seem like something that will be “fixed” by keeping him in the starting rotation.

At least Wednesday’s game was close, unlike Tuesday’s 7-0 rout by the Red Sox. The Yankees pulled within 1 run on 2 home runs, by Johnny Damon and Mark Teixeira, in the 7th inning, but that was as close as they got.

In tonight’s game, the Yankees were leading the Red Sox in the 7th inning, 3-1. And if the game had ended there, they’d have been fine. But the 8th inning had to be played, and the Red Sox fought their way back to take the lead in that inning. After a single by Nick Green and a walk to Dustin Pedroia, J.D. Drew singled, scoring Green. Then Kevin Youkilis singled to load the bases. Jason Bay singled, and Pedroia scored. Mike Lowell drove in the game winner with a sacrifice fly, scoring Drew. And that was the end of that. Final score: Red Sox 4, Yankees 3.

0-8.

cursing.gif


Nationals:

On Wednesday night against the Reds, the rain began to fall at Nationals Park in the bottom of the 9th inning as the Nationals were attempting to rally and possibly win the game. Over 2 hours later, the game resumed, and the Nats managed to tie the score, sending the game into extra innings. Unfortunately, they performed the way they’ve done all season in extra innings  — poorly — surrendering 2 runs in the 12th inning to lose the game. Entering the game, Ron Villone had pitched 17 scoreless innings for the Nats, and he picked a crappy time to give up his first run of the year! Jay Bruce walked, then Alex Gonzalez was safe at 1st base on Villone’s error, sending Bruce to 2nd base. A passed ball enabled Bruce to go to 3rd, and Jason Bergmann replaced Villone. All would have been well if Bergmann hadn’t given up a double to Jonny Gomes (scoring Bruce) and a single to Jerry Hairston, Jr. scoring Gomes. The Nats did not get a hit in the bottom of the 12th and fell to 0-8 in extra inning games this season.

0-8.
screeeeeeam.jpg
Wonder of wonders, the Nationals managed to pull out a win in today’s game against the Reds, 3-2. Down 2-1 in the bottom of the 8th, with the bases loaded, Ryan Zimmerman hit the ball to Alex Gonzalez, who got the force at 2nd. Alberto Gonzalez slid hard into Brandon Phillips at second, as Phillips was trying to get Zimmerman out at first for the double play, and Phillips’ throw to 1st was off-target.  Anderson Hernandez and Cristian Guzman scored to take a 3-2 lead. Joe Beimel pitched a perfect 9th inning to preserve the win and get his first save in a Nationals uniform.

The save was the Nationals’ first since May 24th.

The Nationals are 3-7 in their last 10 games, and 2-3 in their last 5 games. Those numbers are a lot better than 0-8.

Yankees vs. Orioles

UGH. Yesterday’s game was UGLY!!

ugly.gifWhat a game. I mentioned here that I hoped Phil Hughes would pitch in Baltimore the way he did against the Tigers rather than against the Red Sox. Had he pitched Saturday the way he pitched against the Red Sox, the Yankees would probably have had a much better chance of winning. Hughes was unable to get out of the 2nd inning, sending 13 batters to the plate while throwing 40 pitches and giving up 8 runs (including a home run to Aubrey Huff). The Yankees did hit 3 home runs (Damon, Teixeira, and Swisher), but they hardly mattered. It was just an ugly game.

I realize that Phil Hughes is only 22, so there’s certainly a good chance that he will improve and be a good pitcher some day. A young team building for the future, such as the Nationals for example, that has little/no hope of contending this season, would have the time and the patience to wait and see Hughes improve. The Yankees, however, don’t have that luxury. They have few alternatives right now.

Of course, the Yankees won today’s game, 5-3. Joba Chamberlain pitched 6 innings, giving up 3 runs on 9 hits, and did not allow a run after the 1st inning. Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, and Johnny Damon hit home runs, and Phil Coke and Mariano Rivera teamed up to keep the Orioles off the scoreboard after Chamberlain’s exit. It figures that the Yankees won on Friday and today but lost yesterday when I was there. *sigh*

Rays 8, Yankees 6

Despite a 4-5 performance, including 4 RBI, from Johnny Damon, the Yankees lost to Tampa Bay. This is the second straight 2-game series sweep of the Yankees by and AL East opponent. The Yankees have now lost 5 straight games and have won only 1 game so far this month. Pitching continues to be a concern, not just with the bullpen now but also the starters. Andy Pettitte wasn’t particularly impressive tonight, giving up 5 runs on 9 hits in 6 innings, including 4 home runs. Even Mariano Rivera, who most Yankee fans believe could walk on water without getting his feet wet, gave up 2 home runs. Only the Cleveland Indians have a higher team ERA than the Yankees…even the Nationals have a better team ERA than the Yankees (5.26 vs. 5.77, though that could change after tonight’s game). As someone stated on my message board:

This is the toughest division in MLB and it’s possible to be out of the race by Memorial Day.

Indeed. If the Yankees don’t get their crap together soon, that may be their fate.

If you have read the first few entries in this blog, then you know that I became a Yankees fan when they signed Mike Mussina. Now that Moose is retired, I really thought I’d miss him a lot in this first season after his retirement…but I gotta say, I’m glad he’s not a part of this train wreck.

Only one home run at Yankee Stadium tonight

Only one home run was hit at Yankee Stadium in tonight’s game vs. Oakland. Fortunately, it was hit by a Yankee (thank you, Johnny Damon). Andy Pettitte gave the Yankees 7 strong innings, allowing 2 runs and 9 hits, and the Yankees beat the A’s despite a 4-4 night from A’s catcher Kurt Suzuki. Oh, and in his return to New York, ex-Yankee Jason Giambi was 1-4.

The Yankees are now just a game and a half behind first place Toronto. They start a 3 game series with the Red Sox in Boston on Friday.

Good news about Xavier Nady — per the Associated Press:

NEW YORK (AP)–Xavier Nady will try to rehab his elbow injury without surgery, giving the New York Yankees right fielder a chance to return this season.

Nady has a partial ligament tear in his right elbow and originally was told that he’d likely need a season-ending operation. But after additional tests and exams, doctors recommended a program of rest and strengthening exercises rather than Tommy John surgery, a procedure Nady had in 2001.

“Obviously, I wanted to avoid surgery if possible. You’ve got to do what’s right. I hope going this route ends up working out,” he said….

Not so good news about Chien-Ming Wang — according the the NY Daily News, CMW will be dropped from the starting rotation for one start and will not face the Red Sox. This move isn’t exactly unexpected. I just hope it doesn’t do any further damage to his self-confidence, which must already be at an all-time low anyway.

Opening Day recaps and miscellaneous thoughts

*cough* *sniffle* *groan*

Not only am I trying to deal with my teams’ two losses yesterday, but I’m also fighting off a cold. I definitely need to work on feeling better ASAP, so I’m completely healthy by the Nats’ home opener next Monday.

chicken_soup.jpg

As for yesterday’s games…ugh…what a way to start the season……….

Orioles 10, Yankees 5

CC Sabathia was horrible in his official debut in pinstripes, giving up 6 runs (all earned) in just a little over 4 innings of play. He didn’t give up any home runs, but he didn’t strike anyone out either, and he surrendered 5 walks. The two wild pitches in the first inning were a preview of things to come.

Teixeira was 0-4 in his official Yankees debut. He also left 5 runners on base. And he was booed unmercifully by Oriole fans, who were angry because Tex chose to sign with New York instead of Baltimore. If he keeps having 0-4 games, he’d better get used to being booed.

Derek Jeter may not be the 24 year old phenom that he once was…but at least he got off to a decent start by getting 3 hits in 5 at bats.

Two players who were sorely missed last year hit home runs in this game – Jorge Posada hit a solo HR in the 6th inning, and Hideki Matsui hit a 2-run HR in the 7th inning.

There was an interesting bit of irony in 8th inning, when Johnny Damon nearly robbed Cesar Izturis of a home run. The play could have been ruled fan interference because, as the replay clearly showed, a fan hit Damon’s glove as he attempted to make the catch. Damon didn’t protest very much, presumably because the ball was over the wall, but he did momentarily gesture in the direction of the fan while looking towards the umpires. Although this was just opening day and not a playoff game, it reminded me of the Jeffrey Maier play at Yankee Stadium during the 1996 ALDS. Definitely ironic, since the Yankees opponent in that game was the Baltimore Orioles.

The game was sold out and drew a crowd of 48,607, which is the largest opening day crowd in Oriole Park history. How many of you think the crowd was so big because Baltimore fans are so excited about their Orioles? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Raise your hand if you think the crowd was so big because of all the Yankees fans wanting to see Sabathia’s official debut in pinstripes!
raiseyourhand.jpgTo bad those fans had to leave the game disappointed.

 ===================================================================

Marlins 12, Nationals 6

John Lannan’s first opening day start of his career was anything but memorable. Unable to throw strikes, he only lasted 3 innings, giving up 6 earned runs, including 2 home runs. He also had one strikeout. At least he didn’t walk anyone…he didn’t have time for that, since he was too busy giving up runs!

Adam Dunn was 2-4 in his official Nationals debut, with a 3-run HR in the 6th inning. He had 4 RBI in the game and scored twice. His performance was one of the few highlights of the game for the Nats. Cristian Guzman was also 2-4 and scored 2 runs, while striking out once.

Ronnie Belliard had an error in the first inning (when is Anderson Hernandez coming off the DL?), and Lastings Milledge proved once again that he is not a center fielder, nor, apparently, is he a competent leadoff hitter. Emilio Bonifacio, who was thought to become a fixture at second base for the Nationals before being traded to the Marlins last fall, was 4-5 with a home run and 2 RBI against his former team. He also stole 3 bases. Bonifacio’s inside-the-park home run should/could have been caught but instead sailed over Milledge’s head.

Other than Dunn’s home run, the only other even remotely positive things I can say about this first game are (1) the Nationals didn’t give up after being down 6-0 (last year, they probably would have given up), and (2) no one got hurt.

===================================================================

Debuts

CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira were both decidedly less than impressive in their official Yankees debuts. Adam Dunn’s official debut for the Nationals was much better, even though it didn’t help his team to win the game. At least CC’s ERA (12.46) wasn’t as high as Nats’ starter John Lannan’s (18.00), which wasn’t as high as Yankees reliever Brian Bruney’s (54.00)

22-13

The Yankees played split squad games today — the big boys beat the Astros, 3-1, while the kids beat the Pirates by a field goal…I mean 3 runs, 13-10.

Vs. the Astros: Starter A.J. Burnett is 2-0 this spring after pitching 4 scoreless innings with 3 strikeouts. Johnny Damon hit a home run and A-Rod’s replacement Cody Ransom was 2-3 and scored a run.

Vs. the Pirates: In 3 innings, starter Phil Hughes gave up 2 home runs and three walks, and stuck out 2. The offense scored a touchdown and two field goals. OK, not really, but the Yankees scored 7 runs in the 7th inning to break a 3-3 tie and then added 3 insurance runs in the 9th.

As for the Nationals, they were being shut out by the Mets until the 9th inning, when they scored 6 unanswered runs to win the game, 6-2. Starter Shairon Martis gave up just 1 run, along with 4 hits and 2 walks, but no other runs in 4 innings.

My teams won their three games today by a combined score of 22-13! LOL

More problems for A-Rod

As if the steroids thing wasn’t bad enough, now Alex Rodriguez has to deal with a hip injury…a cyst. It’s just one more roadblock for him this season and one more distraction for the Yankees.

At least the hip issue is something that’s out of A-Rod’s control…it’s not his fault. His problem with diarrhea of the mouth, however, is his fault. Good thing his teammates are used to it by now.

A-Rod’s teammates unfazed by words

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — When word of Alex Rodriguez’s gushing praise for the Mets’ Jose Reyes traveled back to Yankees camp, Johnny Damon didn’t wince.

Before leaving the Dominican Republic club to have his right hip checked out in Colorado, Rodriguez told reporters on Tuesday in Jupiter, Fla., that he wished Reyes and his fleet legs were on the Yankees’ roster.

Of course, what appeared to be an innocuous compliment would complicate the Yankees’ mix, were it to become reality. Not only is Reyes a shortstop, playing a position manned by Derek Jeter, but he’d also probably overtake Damon as the club’s leadoff hitter.

“I don’t take offense to it,” Damon said. “I know how great of a player Jose Reyes is. We have different playing types. I’ve been around and done some pretty good things in this game. I feel like I still can. Hopefully, I have five more [years] in me, but barring injuries, he probably has another 10-15.”…

Checking in at his George M. Steinbrenner Field locker before playing in Team USA’s exhibition against the Blue Jays in Dunedin, Fla., Jeter issued a quick no-comment.

“I’ve got nothing to say, man,” Jeter said.

Sometimes I really wish A-Rod had nothing to say, man.