Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Yanks Give Suzyn Waldman a Birthday Present

After a 4-hour rain delay, the Yankees and Baltimore Orioles played a baseball game last night. It took so long that, before it was over, WCBS broadcaster Suzyn Waldman said she was a year older.

Happy Birthday, Suzyn. "Ma Pinstripe" turns 65. Why reveal her age? Well, she was born in Newton, Massachusetts, outside Boston. She grew up as a Red Sox fan. She says she's changed. Maybe, but I still don't feel guilty about revealing her age. Besides, she doesn't look bad for her age. Surprisingly, she's older than broadcast partner John Sterling, a.k.a. "Pa Pinstripe." Theeee broadcaster's age, 63.

(The nicknames "Ma and Pa Pinstripe" were given to them by Bob Raissman, the sports-media columnist for the New York Daily News, who also gave ex-WFAN voice Chris Russo the nickname "Mad Dog," Dog's ex-partner Mike Francesa "the Sports Pope," and Bob Costas "Rappin' Roberto.")

When the game did get underway, Phil Hughes -- whose uniform number happens to be Suzyn's age -- continued to fight for his spot in the rotation, going 6 innings, 2 runs, 5 hits, only 1 walk, 5 strikeouts. But he did not factor in the decision.

This is because, in the top of the 7th, between them, Hector Noesi and Boone Logan blew the lead. Don't look so surprised. John Sterling is wrong: Sometimes, you can predict baseball.

This enabled Cory Wade to come in and put out the fire, and he became the winning pitcher (4-0) when, in the bottom of the 7th, Francisco Cervelli (4th of the season) and Brett Gardner (7th), not exactly a part of Murderer's Row, hit back-to-back home runs. Jorge Posada (13th) had already hit one out in the 3rd, off Baltimore starter and loser Tommy Hunter (3-3).

Yankees 5, Orioles 3. Mariano Rivera nailed down his 39th save of the season. Getting closer to that record. The Yankee winning streak is now 6.

The Red Sox won, so the Yankees remain 2 1/2 games ahead of them, 3 in the loss column. The Magic Number drops to 20.

The series concludes this afternoon, weather permitting. A.J. Burnett goes against Zach Britton. Who will show up, Good A.J. or Bad A.J.?

Jeter hits 3068 DONE
Rivera saves 598 4
A-Rod homers 628 135
A-Rod hits 2768 232
Magic Number 20 (to eliminate Scum and win Division, 12 to eliminate Rays and clinch Playoff spot, 4 for Jays, O's done)


Hats off to Stephen Strasburg. The Washington Nationals' great hope for the future, the man called the "most-hyped pick in draft history" by ESPN and the "most hyped and closely watched pitching prospect in the history of baseball" by Sports Illustrated, returned to the majors last night, a year and change after Tommy John surgery, when we thought he might not pitch again until next season.

He pitched 5 scoreless innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Washington, limited by a pitch count. The Dodgers went on to pound the Nat bullpen and win, 7-3.

The Nats got 29,092 fans for last night's game, in spite of dodgy weather. That's about 5,000 above their season average so far. This is the excitement that Strasburg brings. He's good for the game.

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