Thursday, September 4, 2014

Yanks Give Kuroda Runs, Beat Sox

If you give a mouse a cookie, bad things can happen.

But if you give a good pitcher some runs, good things can happen.

Take last night, for example. The Yankees played the 2nd game of a 3-game series against The Scum at Yankee Stadium. Hiroki Kuroda started for the Good Guys, and over 7 innings, he allowed just 1 run on 4 hits and no walks.

That kind of pitching deserves run support. Thankfully, he got it. Brian McCann went 4-for-4 with 3 RBIs, including his 17th home run of the season. Jacoby Ellsbury and Brett Gardner also had RBI hits.

Dellin Betances pitched a scoreless 8th, and David Robertson pitched a scoreless 9. 5-1! We beat The Scum, 5-1!

WP: Kuroda (10-8). No save. LP: Ranaudo (3-1).

The Yankees closed to within 4 games of a Wild Card berth.

The series concludes tonight, with former Red Sock Chris Capuano pitching against his former team, who are sending out Brandon Workman.

Come on you Pinstripes! Beat The Scum again!

*

My Alma Mater, East Brunswick High School, opens its 54th season of varsity football tonight, home to Woodbridge. Why it's on a Thursday night, rather than a Friday night, I don't know; it's not because of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, because that's later this month.

And, yesterday afternoon (last night, local time), the U.S. soccer team played its first game since the recent World Cup, going to Prague, and beating the Czech Republic, 1-0. Alejandro Bedoya scored the goal. This is impressive, not just because it's a road win over a European team (and, while they didn't make the World Cup themselves, it's not like it's a "minnow" like Liechtenstein or Andorra or Moldova), but because it was against a team we had never beaten, and which embarrassed us at the 2006 World Cup (the latter, partly thanks to then-new Arsenal signing Tomas Rosicky).

Plus, we did it with, essentially, the next generation: No Landon Donovan or Clint Dempsey in attack, and no Tim Howard in goal. Even more, we were missing arguably our 2 best midfielders, Michael Bradley and Graham Zusi -- they didn't even make the trip. This was purely a "throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks" lineup by manager Jurgen Klinsmann. Even more amazing, we didn't get a yellow card until stoppage time.

*

Days until Rutgers plays football again: 2, this Saturday at noon, home to Howard University, the school that prides itself (with some reason) as "the Black Harvard."

Days until the Red Bulls play again: 2, this Saturday night at 7:00 PM, home to Sporting Kansas City.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again (after tonight): 8, a week from tomorrow night, away to Piscataway, a team we haven't beaten in 24 years. No, that's not a typo: Twenty-four years, nearly a quarter of a century.

Days until Arsenal play again: 9, a week from Saturday, home to Manchester City. The Gunners beat the Citizens 3-0 in the preseason Community Shield, the annual season lidlifter between the defending Premier League Champions (City) and the holders of the FA Cup (Arsenal). But neither side was exactly fielding its preferred starting lineup, and Arsenal have serious injury issues, and both teams struggled in their last League game. We'll see.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby": 9, a week from this Saturday, at 3:00 PM, away to the Philadelphia Union, at PPL Park in Chester, Pennsylvania.

Days until Rutgers makes its Big Ten Conference debut: 9, a week from this Saturday, at 8:00 PM, against old enemy Penn State.

Days until Derek Jeter's last regular-season home game (barring injury): 21, on Thursday, September 25, against the Baltimore Orioles. Just 3 weeks.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series begins: 22, on Friday, September 26, at 7:00 PM, at Fenway Park. It is the last series of the regular season, and will be Derek Jeter's last series against the Sox -- and probably his last against anybody.

Days until the next North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham: 24, on Sunday, September 28, at the Emirates Stadium.

Days until Derek Jeter's last regular-season game (barring injury): 24, on Sunday, September 28, against the Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Days until the Devils play again: 35. They open on Thursday, October 9, away to the Philadelphia Flyers. Just 5 weeks. They once again get screwed by Commissioner Gary Bettman and his schedulemakers, this time having to play 4 road games before their home opener, on Saturday, October 18, at 7:00 PM, vs. the San Jose Sharks.

Days until the Devils play another local rival: See the previous answer. The first game against The Scum is Tuesday night, October 21, at the Prudential Center. The first game against the Islanders is Saturday night, November 29, at the Nassau Coliseum. The Devils' last trip to Uniondale, before the Isles move to Brooklyn, is Monday night, December 15.
Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: 36, on Friday, October 10, at 7:00 PM, a friendly, home to Ecuador, at Rentschler Field in Hartford, Connecticut. The following Tuesday, they will play another Latin American team, Honduras, in a friendly at Florida Atlantic University's stadium in Boca Raton, Florida. There will be one more match in the calendar year, another friendly, against the Republic of Ireland at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin (built on the site of their former home, Lansdowne Road), on Tuesday afternoon (evening, local time), November 18.

Days until Game 7 of the 2014 World Series -- the absolute latest you can ever again see Derek Jeter in a competitive game: 55, on Wednesday, October 29. Under 8 weeks, and no more Jeter -- not as an active player, anyway.

Days until the next East Brunswick vs. Old Bridge Thanksgiving game: 84, on Thursday morning, November 27, at 10:00 AM. Only 12 weeks.

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 191 days. A little over 6 months. Whether it will be a home game, and thus at the new Yankee Stadium, is yet to be determined.

Days until Alex Rodriguez is eligible to play for the Yankees again: 209 -- presuming, that is, that 2015's Opening Day is on April 1, and wouldn't it just work out that way, that A-Rod is again allowed to play a regular-season game for the Yankees on April Fool's Day? Anyway, that's under 7 months.

Days until the New York Islanders' last game at the Nassau Coliseum: 219, on April 11, 2015, at 7:00 PM, against the Columbus Blue Jackets. A little over 7 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 394 days. That's under 13 months. Or, to put it another way, "394 Sleeps Till Brooklyn." Until then, even with their 4 straight long-ago Stanley Cups, they're just a Small Club In Hempstead.

Days until Euro 2016 begins in France: 646, on Friday, June 10. A little over 21 months.

Days until the next Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: 703, on Friday, August 5, 2016. Under 23 months.

Days until the next World Cup begins in Russia: 1,376, on Friday June 8, 2018. Under 4 years.

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