Thursday, September 3, 2015

5 Homers Lead Yanks to 2 of 3 in Boston

Much has happened today, so I'm going to start with the good stuff, since the rest is bad stuff.

The Yankees have 4 home games against the Red Sox at the end of the month, but won't have to go back to Fenway Park until at least next April.

Which is good, because, in the words of the immortal Obi-Wan Kenobi, You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy.

They finished their Boston series yesterday afternoon, a rare 4:00 weekday start. Masahiro Tanaka has now started 3 games against the Sox this season, and won them all. He pitched into the 7th inning, allowing 4 runs on 6 hits and just 1 walk, striking out 5.

But the big story of the day was the Yankees finally unloading with the bats at a convenient time. The Sox took a 1-0 lead in the 1st inning, but in the top of the 2nd, the Yankees pretty much ended it. Observe:

* With 1 out, Chase Headley drew a walk.
* Greg Bird hit a home run (his 3rd of the season) down the right field line, giving the Yankees the lead.
* John Ryan Murphy hit a home run (his 2nd) over the Green Monster.
* Didi Gregorius singled.
* Stephen Drew doubled. (He finished the game batting .211.)
* Brett Gardner walked to load the bases.
* Chris Young singled home Gregorius, although Gardner was thrown out at 2nd.
* Alex Rodriguez singled home Drew and Young.
* Carlos Beltran hit a home run (his 14th) over the Green Monster.

8 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks. That's what I like to see when the Yankees play the Red Sox.

That should have been enough to beat The Scum. Believe it or not, it wasn't.

Fortunately, the Yankees got more. Bird led off the 3rd with a walk, Gregorius also walked after a flyout by Murphy, and Drew hit a home run (his 17th) to make it 11-1 Bronx Bombers.

That was enough, but the Yankees weren't finished Gregorius hit a home run (his 8th) in the 5th, and a Jose Pirela single in the 8th made it 13-5 Yankees.

The Sox got to 5 because, when Tanaka tired in the 7th, Joe Girardi sent in Andrew Bailey, whom injuries had kept out of the game for 2 years. He wasn't ready, as he pitched to 4 batters: Walk, walk, RBI sacrifice fly, RBI single. Justin Wilson got out of the jam.

The Sox got 2 more in the 8th, because Bryan Mitchell had nothing, and Dellin Betances had to bail him out. It was 13-7 going to the bottom of the 9th, and Girardi decided to trust a 6-run lead to Caleb Cotham. But he allowed back-to-back doubles, and Girardi knew the door had to be slammed: Although it wasn't a save situation, in came Andrew Miller, who finished it off.

Yankees 13, Red Sox 8. WP: Tanaka (11-6). No save. LP: Henry Owens (2-2). We took 2 out of 3 from The Scum.

The Toronto Blue Jays also won, so the Yankees remain a game and a half behind.

The Yankees have today off, and come home to face the Tampa Bay Rays.


Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: 1, tomorrow night, in a friendly with Peru at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium in Washington.

Days until Rutgers plays football again: 2, this Saturday afternoon, home to Norfolk State.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 8, a week from tomorrow night, home to Piscataway. Not the best opponent to line up for your season opener: Not only are they the elite football program in Middlesex County, but we haven't beaten them in 25 years. No, I'm not exaggerating: It was October 1990.

Days until the Devils play another local rival: 45, on Sunday, October 18, away to the Rangers.

Days until the next North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham: 65on Saturday, November 7, at the Emirates Stadium. A little over 2 months. (Most likely, at least the time -- currently 10 AM U.S. Eastern -- and possibly the date of this game could be moved to accommodate television. It could be moved to the next day, Sunday.)

Days until the next East Brunswick vs. Old Bridge Thanksgiving game: 84on Thursday morning, November 26, at 11:00 AM, at Jay Doyle Field in East Brunswick. Just 12 weeks.

Days until Euro 2016 begins in France: 281, on Friday, June 10.

Days until the next Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: 337, on Friday, August 5, 2016. Just over 11 months.

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