Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Yanks Wait Until 10th Inning for Bullpen Meltdown

In the last few games, when the Yankees have had bullpen meltdowns, at least they did it in the regulation 9 innings, so we didn't have the additional hope ruined.

Last night, home to the Oakland Athletics, who currently have the best record in the American League, they did it in the 10th inning.

It shouldn't have gotten to that point. Scott Kazmir, whom the Mets let go in one of their more boneheaded trades, and 4 relievers held the Yankees to 2 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks over 10 innings. This included 3 strikeouts each by Alfonso Soriano (surprising nobody) and Brendan Ryan (a mild surprise).

The Yankees scored their runs on a Mark Teixeira single in the 1st, and a Teixeira home run in the 6th, his 10th "Teix message" of the season.

But there were plenty of stranded runners. To wit:

* 1st & 3rd, 1 out in the 1st.

* Man on 1st, 1 out in the 4th.

* Man on 1st, 2 out in the 6th.

* 1st & 2nd, nobody out in the 7th.

* Leadoff walk in the 8th, gets to 2nd with 1 out.

* Man on 1st, 1 out in the 9th -- the potential winning run.

None of those runners scored.

Hiroki Kuroda pitched well into the 7th, but, for the first time this season, Dellin Betances showed he was human, allowing the tying run. Joe Girardi did with David Robertson what Joe Torre rarely did with Mariano Rivera: Bring him in to pitch the 9th with the scored tied.

Unfortunately, Girardi's Binder didn't tell him to leave D-Rob in for the 10th. He brought in Adam Warren.

Forgive the use of a technical term, but Warren went kablooey. Brandon Moss hit his 2nd home run of the game to give the A's the lead. That was bad enough. But this was followed by walk, RBI double, flyout, RBI single.

Girardi saw enough, and brought in Preston Claiborne to put out the fire. Right, after the barn had already burned down and taken the horse with it. Even then, Claiborne was shaky, getting a flyout but then allowing a single and a walk before getting another flyout to end it.

The Yankees went down meekly in the bottom of the 10th. A's 5, Yankees 2. WP: Dan Otero (5-1). SV: Sean Doolittle (6). LP: Warren (1-3).

The series continues at 7:05 tonight. Jesse Chavez starts for A's, and Vidal Nuno for the Yankees.

Somebody that I follow on Twitter said, "Thank God Nuno starts tomorrow." I told them, "If you're looking to God for Nuno starting for the Yankees, you're looking in the wrong direction!"

Translation: This game could well go kablooey well before the bullpen has a chance to melt down.

No comments: