Sunday, June 8, 2014

Cryin' Won't Help You. Prayin' Won't Do You No Good.

As I said yesterday, God answers every prayer, but sometimes the answer is "No."

Or, as Led Zeppelin put it, "Cryin' won't help you. Prayin' won't do you no good."

Last night, in Kansas City against the Royals, David Phelps started for the Yankees. Since he was not Masahiro Tanaka, or even Hiroki Kuroda, Yankee Fans began to pray that he would pitch like, you know, someone better than David Phelps.

And God said, "Thou art kidding, right? Thou shalt not get the result thee dost desire."

Phelps had nothing. In 5 2/3 innings, he allowed 7 runs, 10 hits, 2 walks. Or, as Tanaka calls it, "a month."

And yet, the Yankees entered the bottom of the 6th inning tied 3-3. In the top of that inning, they got an RBI double from Carlos Beltran and a 2-RBI single from Yangervis Solarte to tie it up.

Then -- cue the Mission: Impossible theme again -- Mr. Phelps self-destructed in 5 seconds: Walk, walk, home run, triple, groundout, flyout, single. That's 4 runs. Then, and only then, did Joe Girardi replace him with Matt Daley.

I guess the Binder needs to have at least one page rewritten. He couldn't have gotten somebody up in the bullpen after the first walk? Or at least after the second walk? Maybe this as-yet-hypothetical reliever (Daley or someone else) wouldn't have come in in time to prevent the homer, but it still would have looked better.

Each time scored only once more, but a Yankee rally fell short in the 9th. Royals 8, Yankees 4. WP: Aaron Crow (3-1). No save. LP: Phelps (1-3).

It is time to demote Phelps to the bullpen, and try someone else.

But I'll bet you any money you like that Girardi's Binder doesn't say to do that.

The series continues this afternoon (and concludes tomorrow night), with Kuroda starting against former Tampa Bay Rays ace James Shields.

Many people used to say that God is a Yankee Fan. But with the Rangers and Los Angeles in one Finals, and Florida and Texas in the other, it's clear that God doesn't care who wins a sporting event.

*

Hours until the Red Bulls play again: 5, this afternoon at 5:00, away to the New England Revolution, at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

Hours until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": See the previous answer.

Days until the 2014 World Cup in Brazil: 4, this coming Thursday. In other words, the tournament will be underway before I do this list again.
Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: Monday, June 16, at 6:00 PM Eastern Time, at Estadio das Dunas in Natal, vs. Ghana -- the team that knocked them out of the last 2 World Cups. This, before they have to
Last night, they played their final warmup match, beating Nigeria 2-1 in Jacksonville. They won all 3 warmup matches, but didn't look great in any of them, all of which, of course, were on home soil. Playing good teams in Brazil may be a very different story.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series begins: 19, on Friday night, June 27, at 7:00, at Yankee Stadium II. Under 3 weeks.

Days until Arsenal play again: Officially, not until the new season starts in August. Unofficially, it's this, and I'm just busting about it:

Days until the Arsenal-Red Bulls match at Red Bull Arena: 48, on Saturday, July 26. Under 7 weeks.

Days until the 2014-15 Premier League season begins: 69, on Saturday, August 16. Under 10 weeks. (I previously had this erroneously listed as being on August 9.) The fixture list is usually released on the 2nd Friday in June -- meaning this coming Friday, just after the start of the World Cup.

Days until the next North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham: Unknown. As I said, the next season's schedule, or "fixture list" isn't out yet. Derbies are rarely held that early in the season -- the 2013-14 season's September 1 match was unusually early.

Days until Rutgers plays football again: 81, on Thursday, August 28, away to Washington State, at CenturyLink Field, home of the NFL Champion Seattle Seahawks. (It had been listed as August 30, but was moved up.) Under 3 months.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 88, on Thursday, September 4, home to Woodbridge. It's on a Thursday night, rather than a Friday night, because of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year.

Days until Rutgers makes its Big Ten Conference debut: 97 days, on Saturday, September 13, time to be determined, against old enemy Penn State.

Days until Derek Jeter's last regular-season home game (barring injury): 108, on Thursday, September 25, against the Baltimore Orioles. Under 4 months.

Days until Derek Jeter's last regular-season game (barring injury): 111, on Sunday, September 28, against the Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Days until the Devils play again: 117. The 2014-15 NHL schedule has been released, and the Devils will open the season away to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday, October 3, at 7:00 PM.

Days until the Devils next play a local rival: 118. Their home opener will be against the Islanders on Saturday night, October 4, at 7:00 PM.

Days until Game 7 of the 2014 World Series -- the absolute latest you can ever again see Derek Jeter in a competitive game: 143, on Wednesday, October 29. Under 5 months, and no more Jeter -- not as an active player, anyway.

Days until the next East Brunswick vs. Old Bridge Thanksgiving game: 184, on Thursday morning, November 27, 10:00 AM. Under 6 months.

Days until New York City FC make their Major League Soccer debut: Unknown, but a new MLS season usually begins on the 2nd Saturday in March, which would be March 14, 2015. That's 279 days. A little over 9 months. Whether it will be a home game, and thus at the new Yankee Stadium, is yet to be determined.

Days until the New York Islanders' last game at the Nassau Coliseum: 304, on April 8, 2015, at 7:00 PM, against the Ottawa Senators. Just 10 months.

Days until the Islanders' first home game at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn: Unknown, but an NHL regular season usually begins on the 1st Friday in October, which would be October 2, 2015. That's 481 days. That's under 16 months. Or, to put it another way, "481 Sleeps Till Brooklyn." Until then, even with their 4 straight long-ago Stanley Cups, they're just a Small Club In Hempstead.

Days until the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: 789, on Friday, August 5, 2016. Under 26 months.

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