Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Tanaka Melts Down vs. Mets... In A-Rod's Yankee Finale?

The Yankees had won 7 of their last 9 against The Other Team. Well, nothing lasts forever, not even with Masahiro Tanaka as your starting pitcher.

Hiro took the mound at Citi Field last night, and did not have good stuff. He (and the bullpen) held the Mets' much-hyped new acquisition, the All-Star former Cincinnati Red right fielder Jay Bruce, hitless. But that, along with Didi Gregorius' slight consolation of a home run (his 12th of the season) off Jon Niese to get the Yankees on the board in the 9th inning was the extent of the highlights. Jacob deGrom pitched well as the Met starter, which shouldn't matter, because the Yankees should be able to hit anybody.

Tanaka allowed home runs to Alejandro de Aza in the 3rd inning to fall behind 2-0, and to Travis d'Arnaud in the 5th to make it 3-0. But Joe Girardi let him pitch into the 7th.

Ordinarily, I would be in favor of that, because it would be a sign that Girardi finally trusts his starters to do what they're paid to do: Pitch. But, as we all know (but some of us are too damned stupid to admit), Girardi now has to trust his starters, because Brian Cashman traded away Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman, and now half the shit in Girardi's binder is no longer applicable. Girardi can't trust his 7th inning possibilities, and, as a result, he had to leave Tanaka in. And, as a result of that, the Mets tagged Tanaka for 4 runs in the inning before Girardi finally took him out.

In the 9th, with the pitcher's spot in the order coming up, Girardi sent Alex Rodriguez up to pinch-hit. Not that it mattered at this point, but A-Rod treated it like a clutch moment: He hit a lazy fly ball to short right field, a typical A-Fraud pop-up. This time, Luis Castillo wasn't there to drop it and futz things up for the Mets: Bruce made an easy catch for the final out of the game.

There's already a rumor going around that it might end up being the final appearance for A-Rod in a Yankee uniform, that he might be outright released, and his roster spot taken  by a rookie callup from Scranton, as part of the Yankees' new youth movement.

I guess, now that he really can't hit anymore, and the Yankees are only on the hook for another $28 million of The Contract From Hell, it's safe to release him.

Catcher Gary Sanchez has been called up from Scranton. Whose place does he take on the roster?

At any rate, the final score of last night's game: Mets 7, Yankees 1. WP: deGrom (7-5). No save. LP: Tanaka (7-4).

The series continues tonight, moving over the Triboro/Robert F. Kennedy Bridge to The Bronx. Rookie righthander Chad Green starts for the Yankees, Steven Matz for the Metz.

Come on you Pinstripes!


Days until the 2016 Olympics begin in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: 0. They're already underway, although the official Opening Ceremony isn't until this Friday.

Days until the New York Red Bulls play again: 3, this Sunday night at 9:30 PM Eastern Time, away to the Los Angeles Galaxy in Carson, California.

Days until the next Yankees-Red Sox series: 6, next Tuesday night, at Fenway Park.

Days until The Arsenal play another competitive match: 11, on Sunday, August 14, home to Liverpool. Under 2 weeks. Their California was a success, as they beat the Major League Soccer All-Stars 2-1 in San Jose, and Mexico's Club Deportivo Guadalajara, a.k.a. Chivas, 3-1 in Carson.

Days until the Red Bulls next play a "derby" (after tonight's game, that is): 18, against D.C. United on Sunday night, August 21, at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium in Washington. The next game against the New England Revolution is on Sunday night, August 28, at Red Bull Arena. The next game against the Philadelphia Union is on Saturday night, October 1, at Red Bull Arena. There are no further games this regular season against New York City FC, although Metro could face them in the MLS Cup Playoffs.

Days until the U.S. national soccer team plays again: 30, on Friday, September 2, in a CONCACAF Qualifying Match for the 2018 World Cup, away to St. Vincent & the Grenadines. Just 1 month. They should win, especially since they took on the best that Latin America had to offer in the Copa America, and reached the Semifinals before being knocked out by Argentina. This will be followed 4 days later by another Qualifier, at EverBank Field, home of the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars.

Days until Rutgers University plays football again: 31, on Saturday, September 3, away to the University of Washington, in Seattle.

Days until East Brunswick High School plays football again: 37, on Friday, September 9, probably away, since, while the 2016 schedule hasn't been released yet, the Big Green opened last season at home. A little over 5 weeks.

Days until the New Jersey Devils play again: 71, on Thursday night, October 13, away to the Florida Panthers in the Miami suburb of Sunrise. Just 10 weeks. The home opener is 5 days later, on Tuesday night, October 18, against the Anaheim Ducks.

Days until the 2016 Presidential election: 97, on Tuesday, November 8. That's a little over 3 months. Make sure you are registered to vote, and then make sure you vote!

Days until the next East Brunswick-Old Bridge Thanksgiving game: 113, on Thursday morning, November 24, at the purple shit pit on Route 9. Under  4 months.

Days until the New Jersey Devils play another local rival: 130. Their 1st game this season with the New York Rangers will be on Sunday night, December 11, at Madison Square Garden. Their 1st game this season with the Philadelphia Flyers will be on Thursday night, December 22, at the Prudential Center. By a quirk in the schedule, the New York Islanders, a team they usually play several times a season, don't show up on the slate until Saturday night, February 18, 2017, at the Prudential Center.

Days until The Contract From Hell runs out, and Alex Rodriguez' alleged retirement becomes official as far as the Yankees are concerned: 454, on October 31, 2017 -- or at the conclusion of the 2017 World Series, if the Yankees make it, whichever comes last. Under 15 months, unless Yankee management finally decides that they've had enough of his sorry ass and buys him out.

Days until the next World Cup kicks off in Russia: 680, on June 14, 2018. A little under 23 months. The U.S. team will probably qualify for it, but with Jurgen Klinsmann as manager, particularly in competitive matches such as World Cup Qualifiers, rather than in friendlies, you never know.

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