Monday, July 16, 2012

Stat Sheets

Baseball is a funny game.  Sometimes you score at least 5 runs in back-to-back games and you win them both. And then sometimes you score 8 runs in your next game and it's not enough.

Ivan Nova took the hill for the Yanks last night, and didn't have his good stuff.  Which might not have mattered much, except that Chad Qualls, whom the Yankees recently acquired from the Phillies for a player to be named later and had done all right in his 1st 4 games in Pinstripes, also didn't have it.

Alex Rodriguez homered off Jared "Brother of Jeff Fucking" Weaver" in the 1st inning, his 14th of the season.  Curtis Granderson hit his 25th, Eric Chavez his 8th, and Mark Teixeira, who's ripping the ball lately, his 18th.

But the Yankees allowed 8 runs in the last 4 innings, and couldn't catch up.  After Teix's 2-run homer in the bottom of the 9th made it 10-7, there was still nobody out. Nick Swisher drew a walk. Raul Ibanez singled him over to 2nd. Andruw Jones struck out. Russell Martin forced the runners over. The Yankees were down to their last out, but the tying run was still at the plate.

Derek Jeter walked to load the bases. Granderson walked to force home a run. Bases still loaded.  A-Rod popped up.

File this one under "Typical A-Rod Game": He homered when it wasn't a big deal; when the chips were down, he blew it: He popped up with the bases loaded to end the game.

Angels 10, Yankees 8. WP: Weaver (11-1).  SV: Kevin Jepsen (1). LP: Nova (10-4).

It could be worse, I suppose: Yesterday, the Mets sent The Great Johan Santana out against the Atlanta Braves, and he got out-pitched by Ben Sheets.

In case you've forgotten, Sheets was a decent pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers, and is, in fact, the club's all-time leader in strikeouts. He started the 2008 All-Star Game at the old Yankee Stadium. But he was already injury-prone, got hurt late in the season, and missed the Playoffs. He missed the entire 2009 and 2011 seasons due to injuries, and wasn't all that effective in 2010. Until yesterday, he hadn't pitched in almost 2 years.

He pitched 6 innings, allowed just 2 hits and 1 walk, struck out 5, and was the winning pitcher as the Braves beat the Mets, 6-1.

I'm glad I don't work for the Mets and have to study stat sheets. Or Sheet's stats.

Tonight, the Yankees begin a series with those pesky Toronto Blue Jays. Phil Hughes starts against Henderson Alvarez. The Mets have the day off, and start a series in Washington tomorrow, against the Nationals, who have surprised all season and are still in 1st place in the NL East.


The 2012-13 NHL and English Premier League schedules have been released -- but not, as yet, that of the NBA.

Days until the Red Bulls play again: 2, on Wednesday night, home to the Chicago Fire. They drew with the Seattle Sounders last night.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": 5, this Saturday afternoon, July 21, at Red Bull Arena against the Philadelphia Union. They go down to Washington to face D.C. United on Wednesday night, August 29; and travel to Foxboro to face the New England Revolution on Saturday, September 22.

Days until Chelsea play Paris Saint-Germain at Yankee Stadium: 6, this coming Sunday night. Although the old Stadium hosted plenty of soccer games, concluding with the North American Soccer League's New York Cosmos in 1976, this will be the 1st match in the new Stadium. In order to fit a "football pitch," they're going to run it the same direction the gridiron ran at the old Stadium, from the 1st base dugout out to left and left-center field.

Days until the 2012 Olympics begin in London: 11, on Friday night, July 27. A week and a half.

Days until the Red Bulls play Tottenham at Red Bull Arena: 15, on Tuesday night, July 31. I won't call this preseason match a "friendly," because it's The Scum. At least I won't have to watch Harry Redknapp twitching in shorts, like I did when they visited for the 2010 New York Football Challenge.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series begins: 20, on Friday, July 27, at Yankee Stadium II. Under 3 weeks.

Days until AC Milan play Real Madrid at Yankee Stadium: 23, on Wednesday night, August 8. Unlike Chelsea vs. PSG, I really would like to see this one, but will so many Italian-Americans in the Tri-State Area, and probably more of them being fans of Milan than of any other Italian club, this may be tough to get a ticket for.
Days until the U.S. National Soccer Team plays again: 30, on Wednesday night, August 15, against arch-rival Mexico at the Estadio Azteca in Mexico City, a house of horrors for the Stars & Stripes, as we have never won there. And as long as Jurgen Klinsmann is still the manager, I don't expect that to change, because he cannot pick a lineup! Sack him, Sunil Gulati!
Days until Arsenal play another competitive match (not counting preseason friendlies, which are already underway): 33, on Saturday, August 18, home to Sunderland, a.k.a. the Dirty Monkey Mackems. Under 5 weeks. I had been under the impression that it would be the preceding Saturday.

Days until Rutgers plays football again: 47, on Saturday September 1, at the Superdome in New Orleans against Tulane University. Not exactly a rivalry game, although Tulane was founded by a Princeton man. And thus, in 7 weeks, will begin the Kyle Flood Era. Good luck...

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 53, on Friday, September 7, home to South Brunswick. Under 8 weeks. I'm glad it's a home game: It's always good to open the season at home, and South Brunswick is particularly tough to get to: Despite the distance, it's not close to public transportation. But that's the only thing I have against them: Though they are neighbors, they are not rivals. 
Days until the Devils play again: 88, opening the season on Friday night, October 12, away to the Washington Capitals. Under 3 months.  he home opener is the next night, against the Boston Bruins.
Days until the Devils play another local rival: 93, on Wednesday night, October 17, the 3rd game of the season, the 2nd home game, at the Prudential Center, against the Rangers, the 1st meeting between the teams since Adam Henrique put The Scum in their place. The 1st meeting with the Philadelphia Flyers will be on Thursday night, November 1. I'd say the game will be at the Wells Fargo Center in Philly, but that's dependent on the arena's name not being changed... again. The 1st meeting with the New York Islanders will be on Saturday night, November 17, at the Nassau Coliseum. Barring a big change, there will be only 3 seasons left at the Coliseum -- and possibly only 18 more Devils-Islanders games, unless the Isles build a new arena, move to the Barclays Center, or somehow make the Playoffs in the next 3 seasons.

Days until the 1st Nets game in Brooklyn: Unknown, as the 2012-13 NBA schedule has still not been released. The season usually starts in late October, so we're talking about 100 days or so. A little over 3 months. 
Days until the 2012 President election: 110, on Tuesday, November 6. Under 4 months. Register to vote... and on November 6, vote! 

Days until the next North London Derby: 122, on Saturday, November 17, at the Emirates Stadium. The return fixture will be on Saturday, March 2, 2013, at White Hart Lane.

Days until the next East Brunswick-Old Bridge Thanksgiving clash: 129. A little over 4 months. Come on you Boys in Green! Beat those Purple Bastards!
Days until Alex Rodriguez collects his 3,000th career hit: 380 (estimated around August 1, 2013). Presuming he doesn't get hurt, a little over a year.
Days until Super Bowl XLVIII at the Meadowlands: 566 (February 2, 2014). Less than 19 months. 

Days until Alex Rodriguez hits his 700th career home run: 658 (estimated). 

Days until Alex Rodriguez hits his 756th career home run to surpass all-time leader Hank Aaron: 1,493 (estimated). 

Days until Alex Rodriguez hits his 763rd career home run to become as close to a "real" all-time leader as we are likely to have: 1,538 (estimated -- estimating 28 home runs a year, and he might get it by the close of the 2016 season, maybe around October 1, at age 41).

No comments: