Friday, April 19, 2013

Breaking News, Breaking Streaks, Breaking Bones


The Yankees started this season 1-4, and every Yankee Fan's greatest fear -- and every Yankee Hater's wet dream -- seemed to be coming true: This is going to be the year the Yankees finally fall apart.

Then the Yankees won 7 of their next 8.  Oh well, normal service has been resumed.  And all without Derek Jeter, Mark Teixeira, Curtis Granderson, and ol' what's is name, Alex Rodriguez.

Except now we hear that Jeter's ankle has sustained a second break in his training to return.  Like Teix and Grandy, we thought he would be back in May.  Now, like A-Rod, he's probably going to be out until at least the All-Star Break.

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On Wednesday night, the Yankees played the 2nd game of their 3-game home series with the Arizona Diamondbacks.  The Snakes got 2 in the 1st inning off CC Sabathia, and we all got worried.  But CC settled down and pitched pretty well after that.

It was 3-0 D-backs going into the bottom of the 7th.  With 1 out, Ben Francisco singled to left.  After  2nd out, Brennan Boesch dropped a looper into left, getting to 2nd while Francisco scooted over to 3rd.  Eduardo Nunez walked to load the bases -- not intentionally.  And Jayson Nix worked a walk to send home  Francisco with the first run.  After a pitching change, Brett Gardner singled home Boesch and Nunez.  Tie ballgame.

In the 8th, Travis Hafner pinch-hit for Francisco.  Now, what could Joe Girardi's Binder possibly have said to tell him, "Pinch-hit for the guy who started the rally that tied the game"? Well, it must have said something that told him that "Pronk" could hit against new Arizona pitcher David Hernandez.  It worked: Hafner homered to right-center.  That produced the final score.

Yankees 4, Diamondbacks 3.  WP: Sabathia (3-1).  SV: Mariano Rivera (4).  LP: Hernandez (0-1).

*

Then came last night.  Phil Hughes was on the mound for the Yankees, and he pitched well enough to win: 7 innintgs, 2 runs, 6 hits, no walks, 6 strikeouts.  But we didn't hit for him, scoring only 1 run over the first 8 1/3 innings: A home run by Robinson Cano, his 5th of the season.  Cano got off to a horrid start, but he's been smoking the ball lately.

In the bottom of the 9th, the Diamondbacks brought in some Putz to close it out.  Former Seattle Mariners closer and Mets setup man J.J. Putz.  He got Boesch to fly out, but then Francisco Cervelli hit one out to tie it up.  After Ichiro Suzuki grounded out, Nunez singled, and the winning run was on 1st.  But Lyle Overbay grounded out.

This game was like the end of last season, when, except for home runs, we would go 9, or even 12, innings scoring nothing except home runs.  Epic RISPfail.

Between them, Boone Logan, Joba Chamberlain (yes, those two), and David Robertson pitched 3 innings, allowing 3 hits, no walks, no runs.  Nice job.  But the Yankees went down 1-2-3 in the 10th, and wasted 2 singles in the 11th.

Then came the top of the 12th.  David Phelps had gotten out of a jam in the 11th, but in the 12th, well, as they might say on Mission: Impossible, Mr. Phelps self-destructed in five seconds.

Double to Gerardo Parra.  Flyout by Martin Prado, getting Parra to 3rd.  Then, just as Cervelli giveth, Cervelli taketh away, being called for catcher's interference, allowing Paul Goldschmidt to reach.  Then Phelps hit Miguel Montero with a pitch to load the bases with only 1 out and the potential winning run on 3rd.  Then a single to Cody Ross, scoring Parra.  Then a double by... a guy the Yankees let get away, Eric Chavez.  Bases cleared.  6-2 Diamondbacks.

The Yankees went down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 12th.

WP: Heath Bell (1-0).  LP: Phelps (0-1).

Don't blame Phelps: The game never should have gotten that far.  In 12 innings, home runs aside, the Yankees got no runs on only 5 hits in 12 innings.

Off to Toronto.  They better paste those new pitching acquisitions the pesky Blue Jays got.

*

The Devils, on the other hand, ended their 10-game losing streak, beating the Philadelphia Flyers, 3-0.  Goals by Ryan Carter, Matt D'Agostini and Adam Henrique.

The Mulberry Street Marauders are still very unlikely to make the Playoffs, but at least that streak won't be hanging over them until the start of the next season.

Have you seen 121 live NHL games? Martin Brodeur has 121 shutouts.

Henrik Lundvist, the goalie for the Rangers, just turned 31, and has 1 shutout and a GAA (goals-against average) of 2.06.  Martin Brodeur is about to turn 41, and has 2 shutouts and a GAA of 2.16.  Oh yeah, Brodeur has 3 Stanley Cup rings and has been to the Finals 5 times.  Lundqvist has never been to the Finals. "King"? Bullshit.

*

What's been happening in Boston and the surrounding area keeps getting sadder and stranger.  After Wednesday's reporting debacle on CNN, which bills itself as "The Most Trusted Name in News," I don't know what to believe anymore.

The best thing anyone can do right now is stay out of law enforcement's way, and let them do their job.

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