Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Kuroda Messes With Texas

So while the Mets held the team with the 2nd-best record in baseball, the Cincinnati Reds, to a scoreless tie until the bottom of the 9th, and then saw the Reds walk off 3-0 winners on a Jay Bruce home run, and the Red Sox' meltdown continues... See Lisa Swan's take on The Real Housewives of Boston for Subway Squawkers...

There was a ding-dong pitching duel at Yankee Stadium II last night. Hiroki Kuroda took a no-hitter into the 7th inning against the Texas Rangers, but Matt Harrison likewise held the Yankees scoreless for 6.

Then, in the bottom of the 7th, the Yankees decided they'd had enough of this. Derek Jeter singled -- career hit Number 3,244. Then Nick Swisher crushed one, his 16th homer of the season and his 2nd in as many nights. Then Mark Teixeira hit a Teix message to make it, as John Sterling likes to say, "Back to back, and belly to belly!"

That was all the scoring in the game. Kuroda went the distance in a brilliant shutout: 9 innings, 2 hits, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts. Yankees 3, Rangers 0. WP: Kuroda (11-8 -- which doesn't reflect how he's been fantastic lately). No SV necessary. LP: Harrison (13-7).

Whoever came up with the saying "Don't mess with Texas," the Yankees aren't listening.

Baltimore won, and Tampa Bay lost, so the Yankees are now 6 games ahead of both of them, and a game and a half (one in the loss column) ahead of the Rangers for the best record in the American League.

Elimination numbers: Toronto Blue Jays 32, Red Sox 33, Orioles and Rays both 40.  The countdown continues.  At this rate, the Yankees should clinch the AL east on Sunday, September 23.


Hours until the U.S. National Soccer Team plays again: 10, tonight, 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 the next Yankees-Red Sox series begins: 2, this Friday night, August 17, at Yankee Stadium II.

Days until Arsenal play another competitive match (not counting preseason friendlies, which are already underway): 3, this Saturday, August 18, home to Sunderland, a.k.a. the Dirty Monkey Mackems.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": 14, going down to Washington to face D.C. United on Wednesday night, August 29.  2 weeks. They travel to Foxboro to face the New England Revolution on Saturday, September 22, and to Chester to face the Union on Saturday, October 27.

Days until Rutgers plays football again: 17, 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 a little over 2 weeks, will begin the Kyle Flood Era. Good luck... 

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 23, on Friday, September 7, home to South Brunswick. A little over 3 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: 58, opening the season on Friday night, October 12, away to the Washington Capitals. Under 2 months. The home opener is the next night, against the Boston Bruins.
Days until the Devils play another local rival: 63, 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: 78, on Thursday, November 1, against the now actually crosstown Knicks. Just 11 weeks.

Days until the 2012 Presidential election: 83. Just 12 weeks. Register to vote... and on November 6, vote!

Days until the next North London Derby: 94, 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: 99. A little over 3 months. Come on you Boys in Green! Beat those Purple Bastards!

Days until Alex Rodriguez collects his 3,000th career hit: 382 (estimated around September 1, 2013). This is taking his current injury into account. You'll notice that, even though Derek Jeter is only 1,012 hits short of Pete Rose's record of 4,256, I'm not doing a countdown to that. Or even to 4,000. While 763 homers is within reach for A-Rod if his current injury is his last of any significance, breaking Rose's hit record isn't likely to happen for Jeter, or anyone else, in my lifetime. But I'd love to be wrong about that.

Days until Super Bowl XLVIII at the Meadowlands: 536 (February 2, 2014). Under 18 months.

Days until the 2014 Winter Olympics: 541 (February 7, 2014).

Days until the 2014 World Cup in Brazil: 666 (June 12, 2014). Under 22 months.

Days until Alex Rodriguez hits his 700th career home run: 761 (estimated, around September 15, 2014).

Days until the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: 1,451 (August 5, 2016). Under 2 years.

Days until Alex Rodriguez hits his 756th career home run to surpass all-time leader Hank Aaron: 1,507 (estimated -- I'm guessing around the end of 2016, around September 30).

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: 1,750 (estimated -- estimating 28 home runs a year, taking his current injury into account, I'm guessing around April 30, 2017, at age 41). Under 3 1/2 years -- if he can.

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